This wholemeal molasses seed loaf was possibly the first thing I ever learned to cook from my mom.
Not as a kid when we’d bake scones, biscuits or chocolate cake every Sunday, but as a teenager when I was doing my unofficial apprenticeship in her restaurant kitchen and I was learning the building blocks of authentic, nutritious, delicious food.
Every table would get a basket of this bread with fresh farm butter as they sat down, and our baker churned out upwards of 40 or 50 loaves a day as standard.
Sundays are still a designated baking day in our house, and this bread is still probably number one on my list of go-to recipes.
If you’ve never made bread before this is a great place to start as the effort to results ratio is off the charts.
Believe me when I say that this bread will elevate everything to the next level, from PB toast to cheese & tomato sarnies, and anything you can think of in between. After all, a sandwich is only as good as the bread it’s made on.
- 1 Tablespoon (15ml) dried active yeast
- 1/2 teaspoon (2.5ml) brown sugar
- 1 cup (250ml) hand hot water
- 4 cups (1 litre) plain wholemeal flour
- 2 cups (500ml) spelt flour
- 1/2 cup (125ml) wheat flakes or wheatgerm
- 1 1/4 cups (310ml) combined seeds. These can be made up of any combination of sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, poppy seeds and crushed linseeds
- 1 Tablespoon (15ml) sea salt or Kosher salt
- 1 Tablespoon sunflower oil
- 2 Tablespoons molasses
- 3 Tablespoons (45ml) of brown or molasses sugar
- 4 cups (1 litre) warm water
This recipe will make two standard size loaves. Before you start make sure you have two very well buttered tins ready.
- Combine the yeast, 1/2 teaspoon of brown sugar and a cup of hand hot water in a bowl. Stir and set aside to activate.
- In a large mixing bowl combine the flour and wheat flakes.
- Add in the seeds reserving about 2 Tablespoons each of pumpkin seeds and sesames seeds.
- Roughly mix the dry ingredients and make a well in the middle to add your wet ingredients to.
- Add the salt, the oil, the brown sugar and the molasses.
- Add the frothed yeast mixture.
- Add about a cup of the warm water.
- Start to mix the dry ingredients in by slowly drawing them into the well.
- Slowly add more of the warm water (you may not need to add it all) until you have a sticky and somewhat sloppy dough mix with no dry patches.
- Use your hand to scoop into your two loaf tins.
- Top with a line of pumpkin seeds down the centre and sesame seeds down the sides. (Any seeds can be used here, but you need at least two different kinds for the distinctive Cape Seedloaf look)
- Cover with a clean tea towel and leave in a warm place to rise for 30-40 minutes.
- Meanwhile pre-heat the oven to 200*C (or 180*C in a fan oven)
- When the dough is nearly at the rim of the tin, place in the centre of the oven and bake for 45 minutes to an hour.
- The bread should be coming away from the side of the tin, a skewer inserted into the centre should come out clean, and the bottom of the loaf should be fairly hard.
- Allow the bread to cool for 10 minutes before turning out of the tin and cooling completely on a rack.
Allow to cool before cutting
The crust can be very crispy so turn upside down to make it easier to slice.
This is a quick bread meaning it uses yeast and not gluten to rise, so it goes stale more quickly. If not eaten by the second day (which is unlikely) it still makes delicious toast.
This bread is very filling and one or two slices go a long way. If you are a small household you can slice the second loaf and freeze it straight away. It toasts beautifully straight from frozen.
I work in interior and brand design for the hospitality sector. My blog explores #slow living and a sustainable lifestyle in the modern world.