Hippy bread. That’s what my mum would probably say if I told her what the loaf of bread sitting beside me was called.
Maybe it should be called superfood bread? Both chia and quinoa seem to be happily sitting under the superfood umbrella at the moment. Basking their superfood bodies in the healthy food spotlight. Rightly so, as this loaf certainly feels good and healthy on eating. I’d picked up some locally grown quinoa in Tasmania and already had some chia lounging in the back of the fridge. I was ready to jump back into the sourdough making after being away and these two super heroes had their names written down for my upcoming loaf.
After we had got back from Tasmania, checking the sourdough starter in the fridge was one of the first things I did. Actually I checked both of them, as I had put two in different bowls in different positions to try to make sure something was still happy when we got back.
Why so pedantic?
It all started a few weeks back. There I was on an everyday Monday, with a head full of things that left very little room for much else. I needed to make bread and while in my whole heartedly distracted state, I used all my starter. Yes. Allll my starter. My starter that I had been gently nurturing for over a year, providing my family with abundance of loaves of bread, and I had just used it all.
A sharp intake of breath, a slight sweating of the brow, and a quickened heart beat. Oh, oh, oh….
It’s ok! I’ve got a frozen bit for back up. I had recently used another frozen portion to see how the whole bringing it back process actually worked. I’d also written a draft post on it. It was going to be fine. It was going to be fine…
But it wasn’t. It wasn’t fine. I gave that little frozen starter so much love it clearly didn’t know what to do with itself. An encouraging one teeny tiny bubble a day kept my hope alive. Come on little thing, you can do it, I softly whispered.
It turned grey. I changed bowls. I added more water. I added more flour. I added honey. I added rye… It smelt funny.
I suspected death was around the corner and in a last attempt before quietly putting her in the bin, I turned it to three different bowls with three different ways of encouraging the starter to grow to her old bubbly self. One bowl died immediately, and two decided to give themselves one more go. Two bubbles…three bubbles, four bubbles. Frog spawn! Oh the joy! Thank you, thank you, thank you.
Yes, I could have got some starter back from friends who have now embraced the sourdough pilgrimage. I could have made another, and I could have just let it rest awhile and played with commercial yeasted bread. I could have, but I didn’t want to. I wasn’t the only one who had despaired at the thought of no sourdough. Mr Chocolate had looked on with horror when I had explained what had happened on that first distracted day. Horror again at the thought of his lunch going to have to come from shop bread…
So that’s what happened. But now, the old girls back. She was clearly itching to get cracking with some loaves of bread this time around, as it didn’t take long for those reassuring bubbles to come back at all, (thank goodness.)
Chia Quinoa Bread
2 tbls chia
450g strong bakers flour
300g cooked quinoa and chia (I had a bit left over)
1 1/2 tsp salt
In a pot add the quinoa, chia and water. Cook for about 10 minutes or so. When the water is all absorbed and grains have softened, cool a little. Add starter, flour and water. Mix together and then I left it for about half an hour. Add the cooled quinoa and chia, mix well (I used a dough hook) then add the salt. A 30 second knead/fold on lightly floured surface and back in the bowl for an hour or so. Another 30 second knead/fold and then back in bowl, covered and into the fridge for a cold sleep for about 12-ish hours. Back out, getting a tight knead together, than into the banetton for about 4 hours.
Out on to tray, slash, steam, and bake at 240 for about 40 minutes.
*This post submitted to the lovely yeastspotting