Hello friends! I’m still here, alive and cooking. Apologies for disappearing these past few weeks, but my focus has shifted off food and I’ve been a little preoccupied, with this…
Meet the newest addition to our family, and my nephew, Charlie Squire. All well-cooked 4.6kgs of him born on Wednesday, April 17 at 5.17pm to my little brother and his champion wife, Anna. I’m finally an Aunty, a real Aunty!
I’m still in awe looking at these pictures. I could sit with him, like this – totally enamoured, drinking in his intoxicating new-baby smell – for hours.
But the universe saw all of this coming.
I had my tarot cards read at a hens night a few weeks ago and the second card that was turned over was the Ace of Cups; A seed of emotional awareness has been planted in your life although you may not yet recognise it.
“You have a new love in your life”, Perianne, the tarot card reader said. “You haven’t met him yet, but already the love you have for him is over flowing, just like the cups. He will change your life”.
She was talking about Charlie.
And oh my goodness, over flowing and overwhelming was right. I’ve been beyond excited about his impending arrival but the emotional flood gates were opened as I made a mad dash to the hospital to meet him – just hours after he was born – before visiting hours ended.
Of course I cried (but you know that of me by now), the happiest of tears. It’s what this is all about; it’s the point of being here on this earth and he’s half of my little brother – seeing them like this, how could I not?
And that seed of emotional awareness – now I may get in to some trouble for saying – is realising that I’m not one of those career driven women who want a high-powered job and hugely successful career to come home to at the end of the day (sure that would be nice). And don’t get my wrong, job satisfaction and other creative outlets is paramount for us slightly-mad artistic types – but ultimately, my dream job is to be a mum. I really do look forward to making school lunches, baking slices for school fetes and elaborately fun birthday cakes.
So being the best Aunty in the whole world is the next best thing right now. And I’m taking this new job very seriously because, little Charlie – you don’t even know I exist yet, but you are just the love of my life (so far).
So in the spirit of life changing events, I thought I’d share with you this recipe for a Life-Changing Loaf of Bread. It can’t really compare to life creation but it has changed my life – ok slight exaggeration, I feel good eating it and it makes me happy – that’s good enough.
I’ve never made proper bread and it’s one thing I’d really like to master one day – especially my favourite, sourdough. But this recipe is beyond easy – there’s no needing, no rising and not even a bowl. Every slice looks so pretty speckled with yummy grains, seeds and nuts. It’s high in protein and fibre, gluten-free and vegan friendly. Check out the original here for all the other health benefits.
I made this loaf on the weekend – I make one every couple of weeks and keep slices of it in the freezer. I eat it toasted with a drizzle of olive oil for a cheats dinner or with soup or baked beans or eggs. The flavour and texture really make it a meal in itself.
So go and have babies or make bread – it’ll make you feel good and happy and maybe just change your life.
The Life-Changing Loaf of Bread (My New Roots by Sarah Britton)
Makes: 1 loaf; Prep time: 2 hours (inc. resting); Cook time; 1 hour
1 cup sunflower seeds
½ cup flax seeds
½ cup hazelnuts or almonds
1 ½ cups rolled oats
2 Tbsp chia seeds
4 Tbsp psyllium seed husks (3 Tbsp. if using psyllium husk powder)
1 tsp fine grain sea salt (add ½ tsp. if using coarse salt)
1 Tbsp maple syrup (for sugar-free diets, use a pinch of stevia)
3 Tbsp melted coconut oil or ghee
1 ½ cups water
– In a flexible, silicon loaf pan combine all dry ingredients, stirring well. Whisk maple syrup, oil and water together in a measuring cup. Add this to the dry ingredients and mix very well until everything is completely soaked and dough becomes very thick (if the dough is too thick to stir, add one or two teaspoons of water until the dough is manageable). Smooth out the top with the back of a spoon. Let sit out on the counter for at least 2 hours, or all day or overnight. To ensure the dough is ready, it should retain its shape even when you pull the sides of the loaf pan away from it
– Preheat oven to 175°C
– Place loaf pan in the oven on the middle rack, and bake for 20 minutes. Remove bread from loaf pan, place it upside down directly on the rack and bake for another 30-40 minutes. Bread is done when it sounds hollow when tapped. Let cool completely before slicing (difficult, but important)
– Store bread in a tightly sealed container for up to five days. Freezes well too – slice before freezing for quick and easy toast!