Sprouted buckwheat crepes

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Before we get to the actual crepe recipe, we have to sprout our groats.

sprouted-buckwheat

Sprouting takes a nut or seed that is dormant and brings it to life. You can watch as a food that has been sitting in a bag on a shelf for months begins to grow a little sprout and transforms. One of the easiest foods to sprout is buckwheat. Buckwheat becomes packed with live enzymes and vital nutrients when sprouted.

Sprouted buckwheat is an amazing food because it tastes like a grain but is actually gluten and wheat free and not a grain at all. It is one of the most complete sources of protein on the planet, containing all eight essential amino acids. This makes it perfect for diabetics and those who want to cut down on their sugary carbohydrates and to balance their blood sugar levels. It is also known to lower high blood pressure.

Sprouted buckwheat also cleanses the colon and alkalizes the body. Buckwheat is a wonderful super food for people who have varicose veins or hardening of the arteries. One of the reasons is that it is full of rutin, which is a compound that is known as a powerful capillary wall strengthener. When veins become weak, blood and fluids accumulate and leak into nearby tissues, which may cause varicose veins or hemorrhoids.

This healing food is also rich in lecithin, making it a wonderful cholesterol balancer because lecithin soaks up “bad” cholesterol and prevents it from being absorbed. Lecithin neutralizes toxins and purifies the lymphatic system, taking some of the load off of the liver. Sprouted buckwheat is also a brain boosting super food. 28% of the brain is actually made up of lecithin. Research suggests that regularly consuming foods rich in lecithin may actually prevent anxiety, depression, brain fog, mental fatigue and generally make the brain sharper and clearer.

Buckwheat is high in iron so it is a good blood builder.
 It also prevents osteoporosis because of its high boron and calcium levels. Sprouted buckwheat is high in bio-flavonoids and co-enzyme Q10. It contains all of the B vitamins, magnesium, manganese, and selenium, as well as many other health giving compounds. 

How to Sprout Buckwheat

Place 1 1/2 Cups of buckwheat groats into a bowl and cover it with 2- 3 times as much room temperature water. Mix the seeds up so that none are floating on the top. Allow the seeds to soak for about an hour. Drain the water in a colander and let them stand, rinsing 3 times per day with cool water for 2 days. You will notice a gooey substance on the buckwheat, which is starch. Make sure that you wash this off thoroughly. Spouts will form after a day or two.

RECIPE

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups sprouted buckwheat groats

1/2  – 3/4 cup milk, non-dairy if you prefer

1 Tbsp sweetener of choice (agave nectar, coconut nectar, honey, stevia, etc.)

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 whole egg

1 tsp coconut oil

Method:

Place all of the above ingredients except coconut oil in a high speed blender and blitz until you have a creamy batter.

Melt the coconut oil in a hot pan. Pour a 1/4 of your batter in the pan and swirl it around to create a nice round crepe.

Fry until the batter seems all firm and the edges of your crepe are starting to turn golden brown.

Flip your crepe. Fry until the other side is golden brown.

You probably made enough batter for 4 big crepes.

Now for the yummy filling.

I had a honey-sweetened greek yoghurt, strawberries and a mango. That’s what I used to fill my crepes this morning.

But you can try a savoury filling if you feel like it. Just omit the vanilla and the sweetener from your batter mix.

Add creme cheese or avocado, maybe a cucumber, tomato, radishes. The choice is yours.

Enjoy!

Salmon and egg phyllo parcel

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I’ve been MIA for a while. That’s why I made this New Year’s resolution: at least one post a month, recipe or otherwise. Will see how I go.

So here we go, first post for 2014

Just enjoyed this light lunch on our patio, perfectly paired with an Australian Sauvignon Blanc Semillon and a home-grown rocket salad.

I made this recipe previously on many occasions, following Laura Calder’s recipe Baked Tuna and Egg Phyllo

This time I had some hot-smoked salmon fillet leftover so I used that, equally as good as tuna.

INGREDIENTS

1 grilled fillet of salmon (250-300g), cooled

Cup of grated Gruyere cheese

3/4 cup of chopped parsley and/or coriander (cilantro)

2 scallions, chopped

Salt and pepper to season

6 to 8 sheets phyllo pastry

Melted butter, for brushing, about 50 g

2 eggs

1. Heat the oven to 425°F/220°C. Cool and flake the salmon up in a bowl with a fork. Add the Gruyère and the chopped parsley, coriander and scallions.
Season with salt and pepper. Mix well.

2. Brush one phyllo sheet with butter put another sheet on top. Cut into three long strips. Using two pieces of the pastry drape one over the other making an “X” formation. Lay the third piece of pastry right down the middle over the “X” formation, it should then look more like a circle or wheel. (You may want four thirds.)

3. Make a ring of filling, like a flat doughnut in the middle of the pastry where the layers cross. Crack an egg into the ring. Season. Pull the phyllo edges into a parcel and set on a baking sheet. Make the remaining parcel.

4. Brush the parcels with melted butter. Bake 5 minutes for a runny egg inside and 10 minutes for a firm egg. This is nice with a simple rocket salad with balsamic vinaigrette.

Best Home-made Bread

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This recipe was given to me by my Slovakian auntie. She bakes her own bread on a daily basis.

For a long time I had missed the taste of  bread that I was used to from home  so I asked her to send me her recipe.

When I moved to Australia it took me a good couple of years to get used to the white fluffy, cotton wool-tasting bread you buy in the supermarket. And toasting the bread – that’s not the practice at home.  At least it wasn’t when I was growing up. You don’t really toast rye bread.

Rye bread with caraway seed is the most common variety in the Czech Republic.

One day I used my aunt’s recipe and tried to bake my own bread that tasted like the one from home. And I succeeded.

Don’t get me wrong, there are some wonderful bakeries here in and around Melbourne baking the most amazing sourdough I’ve ever tasted. For example The Red Beard in Trentham that we visit quite often.

But still, the first thing I go for when I get home to Prague is bread. Fresh, not toasted, plain, just like that, yum…

Or with a spread of home-made lard and thinly sliced onion and lots of salt. Not so good for my waistline though 🙂

Try baking your own bread. It’s quite easy. And the reward? Two loaves of preservative – free goodness. The better quality flour you use, the better the quality your bread will be.

I use white bakers flour, organic white spelt and organic wholemeal flour in a 2:1:1 ratio.

You can use just white flour, if that’s what you have at home.

I tweaked my auntie’s recipe a little.

Here is my latest version.

INGREDIENTS:

This recipe yields two loafs.

500 g strong bread flour

250 g white spelt flour

250 g wholemeal flour

3 tsp salt

1-2 tsp caraway seeds, whole or crushed

3 Tbsp vinegar ( I use organic cider vinegar, but white is fine)

3 Tbsp olive oil

200 g cooked potato, grated (3 small or 2 bigger potatoes will do, cook them in their skins, peel and grate finely)

200 ml tepid water

YEAST STARTER

1 Tbsp dry active yeast (my Tbsp is 20 ml, that’s 5 ml bigger than a standard US Tbsp)

3 tsp granulated white sugar

300 ml tepid water

METHOD

Mix the starter ingredients and let them ferment for about half an hour – until bubbly.

Put all remaining ingredients (except the 200 ml water) in the bowl of a stand mixer or a large mixing bowl if you don’t own a mixer.

I use my stand mixer fitted with a dough hook, makes the kneading so much easier. If you knead by hand, that’s a bonus exercise for you.

With the mixer on minimum speed start adding your fermented starter. Also add bit by bit the 200 ml of water.

Dough ball will start forming. Let the mixer knead the dough for about 5 minutes on minimum. It’s a lot of flour, we don’t want to overheat your machine.

Dough should be elastic, smooth and not too wet. Keep adding water if the dough feels too dry. The ball should pick up all the flower off the sides of the bowl. If the dough feels too wet and sticky, add more flour.

Let the dough rise in a covered bowl for an hour or until the dough doubles in size.

1st rising

1st rising

after 1 hour, dough has more than doubled in size

after 1 hour, dough has more than doubled in size

Punch the air out of the dough, roll and knead for a minute, return it to the bowl, cover and let rise again for another hour or until the dough doubles in size.

Meanwhile prepare the tins for baking.  I butter mine and dust them with some corn meal (flour).

Punch the dough again and divide in two equal parts. Shape the dough according to your tin. I use rectangular high bread tin.

3rd rising in the tins, I’m using meat loaf tins

Let the bread rise one last time.

Meanwhile preheat your oven to maximum, mine gets up to 250C.

Make a couple of slits (with a thin sharp knife) in the top of your bread and brush it lightly with some milk, sprinkle with coarse salt.

Bake in the middle of your oven for 15 minutes then reduce to 150C for 45 minutes.

When finished baking remove the bread from the tins and cool on a wire rack.

I slice mine and usually end up with 12 -15 slices per loaf.

This bread has no preservatives so it won’t last a week like the supermarket kind, but I promise you it tastes much better.

I usually put mine in a zip-lock back and freeze.

We toast it straight from the freezer.

marketa