Wednesday, 31 October 2012

Easy grain free five seed bread (coconut flour and psyllium seed husks) Thermomix recipe

One of our daughters has been suffering from intestinal problems for a couple of years. She suspects that it's linked to gluten. So that and my steadily increasing weight gain inspired me to read The Wheat Belly. Even though I don't agree with everything he says, I've decided that restricting wheat, grains and sugar from our diet is worthy of an attempt. Here are some in depth reviews of Wheat Belly; 1234, which outline the pros and cons of Davis's weight loss premise.

In the last few weeks I've tried several gluten and grain free bread recipes. After many so-lah-lah attempts from recipe books and web sites, I decided to convert one of my favorite recipes (it's the Five Seed Bread in the Aussie Everyday Cooking.... for every family book) to a grain free bread. And after a few trial and error masterpieces, I've come up with a recipe that works. The amount of liquid may vary slightly depending on the type of coconut flour you use. I found my coconut flour, coconut milk, coconut oil and coconut sugar in Alnatura in Weil am Rhein, Germany. If you're in Kanton Aargau, you'll find the psyllium seed husks at Bio-Peter in Lenzburg.

The recipe below makes 3 to 4 small'ish loaves, I usually freeze 2. The crumb of this bread is perfect for sandwiches and it also toasts well.

Coconut flour


Psyllium seed husks

Seedy grain free bread

IN RED: changes/improvement 


80g  (1/2 cup) Coconut flour
60g (3/4 cup) Psyllium seed husks (for a softer bread, grind the husks speed 10, 1 minute to a POWDER)                                                          
25g Chia seeds
25g Sesame seeds
25g Pumpkin seeds
25g Linseeds
25g Poppy seeds
10 to 20g Coconut sugar (or honey) (OPTIONAL)
2 Tablespoon Coconut Oil
400 g water  or coconut water/milk  or almond milk. / After lots of experimenting I prefer to use water, it makes the bread lighter.
3 large eggs
2 tsp baking powder / NB: for lighter fluffier bread, use up to 4 tsp baking powder. (1 pkt)
1 tsp salt (if you like salt, add 1.5  to 2 tsp)

  1. Pre-heat oven to 200 C.
  2. Grind the Psyllium seed husks for 1 min, speed 10. 
  3. Add all dry ingredients into the Thermomix bowl, 
  4. Mix on speed 6, 10 sec.
  5. Add the liquid ingredients, work as quickly as possible here.
  6. Mix for 15 sec on speed 7.
  7. Add more water if necessary, the dough should not be too dense and dry, the amount of liquid needed does depend on the brand or type of coconut flour being used.
  8. Knead for 2 minutes
  9. Shape in loaves or balls for rolls, Loaves: sprinkle with seeds. Rolls: roll in seeds (e.g., sesame seeds)
  10. Place on a paper lined tray and bake in the oven for 30 to 35 minutes (depending on the size of the loaves). Allow to cool completely on a wire rack before cutting.

This was day 4, toasted and served with guacamole and baba ganoush.
Bon app!

Update Feb 2013:

This is how the bread looks if you double the amount of baking powder (see changes to the original recipe in red above). I also omitted the poppy seeds, and increased the other seeds.

Sunday, 14 October 2012

Green smoothies

Green Smoothies

I'm usually most productive if I start my day with a green smoothie. I'm not a big breakfast person, but I've found that if I drink a smoothie before I leave the house, I can resist having the morning "Gipfeli " on my way to the lab. I make enough for breakfast and to sip on during the day when my energy levels are low. Here's a recipe that I adapted from various books and web sites:

Green Smoothie


2 Tbs Chia seeds
2 Tbs Linseeds
1-2 cm piece of ginger, peeled 
2-3 dates (seeds removed) or any other sweetener such as erythritol or coconut nectar  (optional) 
Frozen pineapple, (about 1/4 to 1/3 of a whole pineapple, cut into 2 cm pieces before freezing)
1 orange, peeled and cut into eighths 
1-2 large handfuls of greens (baby spinach, kale, bok choy or romaine lettuce)
1 tray of ice cubes (filtered water)
100 - 150 ml filtered water or coconut milk
1-2 tsp coconut oil 

  1. Place the seeds in the TM bowl, and process on speed 10 for 10 sec
  2. Add ginger and dates, and process on speed 10 for 5 sec
  3. Add remaining ingredients and process on speed 10 for 1.30 to 2.00 minutes.
  4. Pour into a glass and enjoy. Keep the remainder in a Thermos for a boost for later.

Note: Any fruit can be used, apples, peaches, berries are great. To limit the morning stress, I try to prepare my fruit in advance. Just wash, peel, cut and freeze the fruit in zip-lock bags. You'll also have a stock for Fruity Dream (Sorbet).

 A green smoothie and a cup of Crio BrĂ¼ - the perfect way to begin the day!