Bread is essential. I’ve been told so countless times. In case you disagree, watch the Michael Pollan’s Cooked episode on yeasted breads. But finding a decent gluten-free bread can be really difficult, and finding one where the protein to carb ratio is equal has proven to be impossible. Even Ezekiel’s bread which uses sprouted wheat and seeds, and thus is not gluten free, has about 3 to 4 grams of carbs for each 1 gram of protein. And as far as I’m concerned, “Paleo bread” is not even bread. A slice of our bread has 11 grams of protein for 10 grams of carbs if made as directed; if ground almonds are substituted for protein powder, the bread will have 11 grams of carbs and 10 grams of protein.
Friends have asked for a bread that butter can be melted over out of the toaster, one that will hold up to an egg on top, or smeared with avocado and harissa. Many of you may have a weekend tradition of starting the day with peanut butter on a piece of toast. If you’re going to eat a nutritious bread though, it’s got to be satisfying which means good flavor and texture. This bread does both–the flavor is enhanced with the seed variety and spices, and the texture is complex yet not too dense because the addition of yeast and baking powder creates more air pockets.
Don’t be discouraged by the list of ingredients–most of the items can be purchased at Trader Joe’s and kept on hand in the refrigerator. The other items (Chai spice–as in chai tea not chia seeds–and black sesame seeds can found at PCC, Ballard Market, Whole Foods, or a health food store; baharat can be purchased at a spice shop (or make it yourself with the recipe below). Once you have these staples on hand, you can put this loaf together in 20 minutes, 25 minutes tops. Baking time is only 40 minutes for a two-pound loaf because the bread goes in the oven as soon as the yeast is activated. Freeze half for later, or share with a friend. Our protein and carb measurements are based on a 12-slice loaf.
NOTE: Store your sesame seeds in the refrigerator–they can become rancid fairly quickly compared to other seeds. I actually store all my opened seeds and nuts in the refrigerator.
Turn oven to 375 degrees.
Grease loaf pan with butter and sprinkle with coconut flour, shaking away excess.
Measure one cup of warm (not hot) water and sprinkle package of yeast on top to activate.
Add flours, baking powder, seeds, protein powder (or ground almonds), and spices (all of the dry ingredients) to a large bowl and mix with a fork. Add oil, tahini, 3 eggs, vinegar, and beets (if you are using). Then pour in activated yeast in water (it should be bubbly) into the bowl with the other ingredients. Stir by hand until the all the ingredients blend together smoothly. I use a large metal spoon.
Pour into prepared pan and place in center of oven. Cook for 38-40 minutes. You should be able to smell the bread when it is ready. Test for doneness with a toothpick. Cool on wire rack for 15 minutes before removing from pan.
Wrap securely and place in a large zip lock bag in the refrigerate. The bread also freezes well. Cut in fairly thick slices if toasting.