As the leaves keep on falling down, so does the desires for all the fruity punches of Summer Salads and light eating. My body is starting to draw its energy inwards and I am already starting to notice the cravings it is showing me every time I go for a shop.
I just found chestnuts yesterday and I realised how I am starting to get naturally drawn to earthy toned foods to prepare for the nesting of Winter and the lighting of the fires within. I like to use food to create space within my body that blends the Microcosm with the Macrocosm.
Because of the need for grounding, as the air cools and the trees turn, I've started whipping out some of my recipes from last year to get super prepared for these coming months! Living in one of the coldest cities in Australia means I no longer have a choice! Melbourne influences so much of my way of eating and I really appreciate its seasons that reflect to me the true cycle of life and the journeys that we go through each year when grounded into one, solid place enough to see them turn.
Enter my all time grounding and nourishing favourite, The Love Loaf!
The Love Loaf is a potent and pretty malleable recipe that can become a fruity, seedy little number or be paired with a bunch of delicious savoury toppings for an epic afternoon snack.The key of this recipe is a good supply of whole foods and a keen imagination. It's again one of those 20 minute wonder foods, that really goes a long way and freezes super well, too.
Adapted from the Life Changing Loaf over at one of my favourite girl crushes, My New Roots, the Love Loaf is a bit quicker to create and a little denser, focusing on a good cleaning out of the system with the fibrous friend, Psyllium Husk. Psyllium is a natural known laxative that within the right quantity can help clear out the pathways for a cleaner and clearer digestive tract. Paired with the soaked Chia and Flax seeds that make up a majority of this recipe, The Love Loaf makes for a good colon cleanser, thats for sure! Psyllium also has the blessing of being a pre-biotic, a substance needed for healthy colonies of probiotics to grow in the gut.
This is a high fat recipe that includes all the GOOD fats and omega's that you need to stay nourished. The Loaf is so dense that a little will fill you up for hours. This is an amazing snack for mum's who are breast feeding or an afternoon brain food snack for dad in the office.
I like to make mine with a good mix up of crunchy nuts and soft sweetness of dried fruits. I add cinnamon and cardamon powder in for a delicious flavour twist of going sweet or fry up some cumin and caraway seeds for a more savoury hit. My favourite topping is to lather coconut oil, tahini, honey and slices of banana or strawberry on top. Its so fulfilling to eat this but I really only need two slices and I am super full! Enjoy with a cup of tea, like I am, right now!
1 cup Sunflower Seed kernels (not in the shell)
1 cup Pepita
1/2 cup Flax seeds, soaked
1/2 cup Chia seeds, soaked
1 cup Psyllium seed husks, soaked
1 teaspoon fine grain sea salt (add 1/2 teaspoon if using coarse salt)
1 tablespoon Brown Rice Syrup/Honey
2 tablespoons melted coconut oil or ghee
1/2 cup hazelnuts or almonds
1 1/2 cups rolled oats
1 cup Turkish Apricots, diced
5 dried Figs, diced
1/2 cup Cranberries
1/2 cup Inca Berries
1/2 cup Goji
3 tablespoons of Sesame Seeds
Cinnamon & Cardamon powder
Cumin & Caraway
A tablespoon of Dukkah
1. In seperate bowls, soak your Psyllium, Chia and Flax for 30 minutes. Cover the seeds with enough water that they become gooey but are not over soaked.
2. Line a flexible, silicon loaf pan or a standard loaf pan with baking paper and coconut oil.
3. In a big bowl, combine all dry ingredients including spices. Now add in your soaked seeds and mix the dough together with your hands. Add in your coconut oil and sweetener. Things will get messy here! Just keep mixing with your hands until it starts to distribute evenly with all the yummy bits. Take the dough and put into your pan. Smooth it out on top so that its all even. Let it sit for at least 2 hours, ideally all day or even overnight.
4. Preheat the oven to 175° C/ 350° F
5. Place loaf pan in the oven on the middle rack, and bake for 15-20 minutes. Not much longer as the oils from the nuts and seeds can release and turn rancid. It needs to be slightly toasted on top but not much more. Let it sit and cool for 30 minutes and bring out of tray to finish off.
6. Store bread in a tightly sealed container for up to five days. It freezes well, also!