Superfood fruit and nut loaf

The Gold Coast Marathon was on this morning and I wanted to bake something portable for breakfast so I could cheer the runners on. I took a slice of this loaf and an almond milk latte down to the race and was very content!

This superfood fruit and nut loaf was beyond what I had imagined it to be. It’s quite dense and is full of good fats, fibre and flavour.

Soon to be applesauce!

By cooking the apples down they turn into an applesauce which provides a natural sweetness to this loaf.

Dry loaf ingredients

The chia seeds and flaxseed meal are binding agents which keep the loaf together.

As I used spelt flour this loaf isn’t gluten or wheat free. However, spelt is an ancient grain with quite a nutty flavour and the way that it’s processed generally enables those who are allergic to wheat to tolerate it.

Chopped nuts and fruit

The best part about this loaf (besides the taste) is that the ingredients are easily interchangeable. As long as you use the same quantities you can change the type of nuts and fruit you use. However, I would recommend keeping the dates as they too add a natural sweetness.

Applesauce

This is what the applesauce looks like once cooked down and whisked.

Ready to be mixed in

Be sure not to over mix the loaf as the gluten in the spelt flour breaks down fairly easily meaning your loaf will become crumbly in texture.

Baked loaf

It’s so tempting to cut the loaf fresh from the oven and taste your delicious creation but allow it to cool for 3-5 minutes. This cooling time ensures your slices do not crumble and fall apart.

Muffins

As I made a double batch I decided to make muffins instead of another loaf.

Portable breakfast!

This photo was taken right before I headed downstairs to cheer on the marathoners!

The loaf and muffins will keep in a sealed container in the fridge for up to three days.

Superfood fruit and nut loaf

Makes 1 loaf and approximately 7 muffins or 2 loaves

Ingredients:

  • 2 apples, washed and diced
  • 2 cups spelt flour
  • 2 cups oat flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 TBSP cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup flaxseed meal
  • 1/4 cup chia seeds
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cups nuts, chopped (1/2 cup each of brazil, almond, walnut and macadamia)
  • 10 dates, pitted and chopped
  • 1/2 cup prunes, chopped
  • 1/2 cup goji berries
  • Pumpkin seeds/pepitas for topping the loaf

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 180C/350F and line a loaf tin with baking paper.
  2. Place diced apple in a small saucepan with a dash of water. Simmer with lid on for 10 minutes, or until soft enough to whisk together to make applesauce.
  3. Mix spelt flour, oat flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, flaxseed and chia seeds together in a large bowl.
  4. Add water and carefully mix until well combined.
  5. Fold in the nuts, dates, prunes, goji berries and applesauce.
  6. Spoon into prepared tin, top with pumpkin seeds and bake for 40-45 minutes.
  7. Cool for 3-5 minutes, slice then enjoy with a tea or coffee!

Notes:

  • To make oat flour blend/process 2 cups of oats until a flour-like consistency.
  • If you don’t have flaxseed meal and chia seeds you could just use 1/2 cup flaxseed meal or 1/2 cup chia seeds instead.
  • You can top the loaf with extra chopped nuts if you don’t have pumpkin seeds.
  • If you’re making muffins bake for 25-30 minutes.
  • Halve the mixture if you don’t want to make two loaves.
  • You can toast a slice of this loaf then spread it with some nut butter!

How did you start your Sunday morning?

Spelt pita crisps

I believe everything tastes better and fresher when made from scratch, which is definitely the case with these pita crisps. They are the perfect addition to a middle eastern meal, served with dips or taste amazing just by themselves.

Some people have the perception that making your own pita crisps is difficult. However, this couldn’t be further from the truth. I have included photos of practically every step so you are able to be guided through.

Activating the yeast

When adding the warm water to the yeast, little bubbles should appear. This means it is activating and will ensure your dough rises.

Ready to knead the dough

It is really important to knead the dough until it is not longer sticky. This helps the pita bread to become elastic which in turn helps it to expand and rise.

Finished kneading

Your dough should be smooth and easy to handle once kneaded.

Dough has risen

It’s important to let your dough rise for 90 minutes as it enables the flavours to develop.

Ready for rolling

Break the dough up into eight portions as they will not only cook quicker but are easier to manage.

Rolled and set for cooking

I actually prefer all the pita bread to be different shapes and sizes as this gives the dish a rustic feel.

Last step!

The macadamia oil and salt add flavour to these pita crisps. You could add spices such as cumin, paprika, dried herbs or pepper as well.

Now enjoy!

These will keep in a sealed container in the pantry for up to four days. Either reheat them in the oven at 180C/350F for 5 minutes or enjoy straight from the container!

Spelt pita crisps

Serves 6 generously

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups wholemeal spelt flour, extra for kneading
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, extra for topping
  • 1 TBSP honey
  • 2 1/2 tsp yeast
  • 1 1/4 cups water, at room temperature
  • 2 TBSP macadamia oil, extra for bowl

Method:

  1. Combine the flour, salt, honey and yeast in a large bowl.
  2. Stir in the water and macadamia oil until well combined.
  3. Knead on a floured surface for 5 minutes, or until smooth.
  4. Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl and cover with a cloth or plastic wrap.
  5. Let dough rest and rise until doubled in size, approximately 90 minutes.
  6. After the dough has doubled, punch down to release some gas then divide into 8 portions.
  7. Roll each potion into a ball then cover and rest for a further 20 minutes.
  8. Preheat oven to 180C/350F and line a tray with baking paper.
  9. Roll out one portion of the dough.
  10. Place rolled dough on lined tray and bake for 3-4 minutes.
  11. Take out of oven, cut into wedges and drizzle with salt and macadamia oil.
  12. Bake for a further 5 minutes, until crisp. Serve and enjoy!

I’d love to hear if you’ve have you made pita bread before?!

Vegan spelt pizza

I love having pizza nights. There’s something so enjoyable about getting friends together, making pizzas and watching movies.

This spelt pizza is a healthy, vegan alternative to the traditional pizzas. Please don’t let the term ‘vegan’ deter you from making it. Vegan basically means it does not contain any animal products e.g. eggs, honey, chicken, goat cheese, etc. However, feel free to add some chicken or lamb as toppings if you’d like some animal protein!

Mixing the wet and dry ingredients

What I really like about spelt flour is it’s very filling, but surprisingly doesn’t make you feel heavy.

Finished kneading, ready for rolling!

It’s important to knead the dough as this helps it to come together and makes it easier to roll out.

Ready to be baked

I baked this before adding the toppings as this ensured it was properly cooked.

All toppings on

I love the combination of earthy basil pesto and zesty cashew cheese – they really complement each other.

Dinner is served!

This pizza will keep in the fridge for up to four days in a sealed container. Reheat in the oven at 180C/350F for 10 minutes or enjoy cold!

Spelt pizza

Makes 1 large pizza

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups wholemeal spelt flour, extra for flouring surface
  • 1 TBSP baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons macadamia oil
Toppings (feel free to adapt to suit your tastebuds)
  • Basil pesto
  • Cashew nut cheese – place in a ziplock bag, cut off one corner and squeeze to pipe the cheese on top
  • Red onion, washed and chopped
  • Zucchini, washed and chopped
  • Spinach leaves, washed
  • Asparagus, washed and chopped
  • Pumpkin, washed and chopped
  • Mushroom, washed and sliced
  • Broccolini, washed and chopped
  • Red capsicum, washed and chopped

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 180C/350F. Line baking tray or pizza tray with baking paper.
  2. Place the spelt flour, baking powder and salt into a large bowl.
  3. Make a well in the center and add the water and oil. Combine ingredients gradually, be careful not to over mix.
  4. Transfer the dough to a clean, floured surface and knead for 5-6 minutes, until smooth.
  5. Roll the dough out to your desired thickness and place on prepared tray and into oven.
  6. Bake spelt base for 10 minutes then removed from oven.
  7. Place pesto, then toppings of your choice, finishing with cashew nut cheese.
  8. Place into oven for 15-20 minutes, until golden on top.
  9. Slice to serve and enjoy!

What are your favourite pizza toppings?

Vanilla pear spelt muffins

Saturday mornings can’t get much better than a freshly baked healthy muffin, an almond milk coffee and the sun out! This was my indulgence and a great start to the weekend.

Dry mixture with pear and dates

I have used spelt flour as the base for these muffins. Technically, these aren’t wheat free (so if you’re gluten intolerant substitute it for gluten free flour!). Spelt is an ancient form of wheat that has quite a nutty flavour. It also makes the muffins dense and very filling.

I find spelt a lot easier to digest than normal wheat flour. Obviously I don’t eat it all the time but it’s nice to have every now and then.

Ready to be baked

The sliced pear on top adds a decorative element to the muffins. However, be sure that the muffins are completely cooked underneath the pear before serving.

This mixture can be made the night before. Then in the morning, spoon the batter into the tray and bake!

Final result!

Vanilla pear spelt muffins

Makes 12

Ingredients:

  • 5 cups wholemeal spelt flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 TBSP cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup desiccated coconut
  • 3 pears: 2 diced and 1 thinly sliced for decoration
  • 10 fresh dates, pitted and diced
  • 1/2 cup walnuts, roughly chopped
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 350mL water
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp coconut palm sugar, for caramelising the pear on top

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 180C/350F. Line muffin tray with baking paper or patty papers.
  2. In a large bowl, combine spelt flour, baking soda, cinnamon and coconut.
  3. Add pear and dates. Mix well.
  4. Add walnuts, honey, water and vanilla extract. Mix until all well combined*.
  5. Spoon into prepared paper. Top with sliced pear and sprinkle palm sugar on top.
  6. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until skewer comes out clean. Enjoy!

*Note: be sure not to over mix the muffins as the gluten in spelt breaks down fairly easily meaning they will have a crumbly texture.

How do you like to start your Saturday?