Happiness Bread {gluten-free}

Happiness Bread is a soft savoury paleo bread, perfect for kick-starting your day, nay your year. It is also pretty much summing up the January I am having so far, I am feeling so positive and sunny that I really don’t recognise myself.

Happiness Bread is a soft savoury gluten-free and paleo bread, packed with sweet potato, nuts, seeds, coconut and turmeric. Perfect for kick-starting your day, nay your year.

I feel like I have changed drastically since giving birth 18 months ago. Not just because I have become a mother and all that entails but I have become less tolerant, more irritable and my sense of humour has drained dry. Also since my downtime is non-existent I never really relax. Basically I am joy, hey come and meet me.

But the major thing that has changed about me is my appearance. There’s no discreet way to approach this but I have put on a lot of weight. Okay so I have never been a size zero. I have always fought a vicious battle with my body and only have to think about a Cadbury’s Caramel to put on another kilo. But since I ballooned during the first sleep deprived months of motherhood my body has been resolute in its new- found magnitude. Despite what my clothes size will tell you I am actually quite a healthy eater. Salads are an obligatory part of my day, I avoid gluten, I only drink in moderation and I don’t eat junk or processed food. So why have I been rolling around North London like a beach ball this past year?

Happiness Bread is a soft savoury gluten-free and paleo bread, packed with sweet potato, nuts, seeds, coconut and turmeric. Perfect for kick-starting your day, nay your year.

Well, okay my food choices have relaxed slightly and I am eating more. Way more to counteract my everyday exhaustion and I do eat more cake than I used to due to baking for a living and recipe testing. Although what’s really changed is my fitness which has take a drastic nosedive. I am not a natural keep fitter but I have taken pride in the fact that since taking up training 8 years ago I have strived to subvert my tendency to curl up on the sofa with my cats by going for a run or doing a crossfit class. However after giving birth I have had two minor but significant setbacks. My back pain, caused by residual pregnancy issues, became so severe that I struggled to pick up Cole at all and I have a Morton’s neuroma which has meant running, jumping or any form of using the ball of my foot during exercise has been excruciatingly painful. I completely lost confidence in exercise as my body hurt too much, I stopped training and went downhill.

Happiness Bread is a soft savoury gluten-free and paleo bread, packed with sweet potato, nuts, seeds, coconut and turmeric. Perfect for kick-starting your day, nay your year.

Well these past couple of months have seen a little improvement, thanks to the amazing work of my physio, osteopath and personal trainer. My back has finally begun to loosen up, my Morton’s neuroma, although not gone, has become more manageable with a rigid exercise plan and I have just started doing cardio and actually working out again. As my body has been feeling better I have had more energy. So much so that I am now taking control of my diet; meal planning, mindful shopping and food prepping at weekends for the coming week. Plus it has helped that Cole is currently happy to stand on a stool and watch mummy make dinner, as opposed to running around the kitchen ripping the knobs off the oven and turning the dishwasher on and off. With this small change I have been able to eat better, eat less and have given up drinking, caffeine and sugar this month. I feel almost terrific and vaguely saintly.

Having a loaf of Happiness Bread helps me out immeasurably during the week. Baking it is a two-step process as the sweet potatoes need to be cooked before you can begin. I have started making sure I chuck a few sweet potatoes in the oven every few days if I know I am going to be at home for the next couple of hours. Cole thinks sweet potato is the best food invented so it’s a must to have some for him on dinner standby and then if I have the baked sweet potato on hand it only takes about 10 minutes to get this loaf mixed and in the oven.

Happiness Bread is a soft savoury gluten-free and paleo bread, packed with sweet potato, nuts, seeds, coconut and turmeric. Perfect for kick-starting your day, nay your year.

Happiness Bread is hearty and filling, packed with protein in the form of nuts and seeds and full of goodness thanks to the sweet potato, coconut oil and turmeric which is incredibly good for you. Tumeric is an antioxidant and has strong anti-inflammatory effects and is a great ingredient as you don’t need a lot of it for it to be beneficial. Plus the colour makes this bread so beautifully sunshiny. The coconut and turmeric flavour really come through and it is so delicious just slathered with butter or piled high with turkey and avocado – my current favourite way to enjoy it.

This is a paleo bread as well so ideal for anyone following that lifestyle and that means it is also gluten-free. The texture is almost cake like so cannot be used the same way you would use a sandwich loaf but it’s a great start to the day and will satiate you until lunchtime.

Happiness Bread is a soft savoury gluten-free and paleo bread, packed with sweet potato, nuts, seeds, coconut and turmeric. Perfect for kick-starting your day, nay your year.

Since introducing this bread to my morning routine I have felt very happy, it’s not just about the bread but having an easy and filling breakfast has definitely contributed to my general feeling of well being. Plus to cap it off I have even just finished reading a book, a trashy thriller mind, but a book nonetheless – so take that no downtime!

Happiness Bread is a soft savoury gluten-free and paleo bread, packed with sweet potato, nuts, seeds, coconut and turmeric. Perfect for kick-starting your day, nay your year.
Print Recipe
Happiness Bread
A soft savoury gluten-free and paleo bread, packed with sweet potato, nuts, seeds, coconut and turmeric. Perfect for kick-starting your day, nay your year.
Happiness Bread is a soft savoury gluten-free and paleo bread, perfect for kick-starting your day, nay your year.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 55 minutes
Servings
10 slices
Ingredients
  • 400 g cooked sweet potato*
  • 4 eggs
  • 140 g cashew butter
  • 60 g coconut oil melted to liquid state
  • 75 g coconut flour
  • 30 g tapioca flour
  • 75 g walnut halves
  • 30 g chia seeds
  • 25 g flaked almonds
  • 25 g pumpkin seeds
  • 20 g sunflower seeds
  • 20 g sesame seeds
  • 15 g ground flaxseed
  • 1 tablespoon ground turmeric
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ¾ teaspoon sea salt
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 55 minutes
Servings
10 slices
Ingredients
  • 400 g cooked sweet potato*
  • 4 eggs
  • 140 g cashew butter
  • 60 g coconut oil melted to liquid state
  • 75 g coconut flour
  • 30 g tapioca flour
  • 75 g walnut halves
  • 30 g chia seeds
  • 25 g flaked almonds
  • 25 g pumpkin seeds
  • 20 g sunflower seeds
  • 20 g sesame seeds
  • 15 g ground flaxseed
  • 1 tablespoon ground turmeric
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ¾ teaspoon sea salt
Happiness Bread is a soft savoury gluten-free and paleo bread, perfect for kick-starting your day, nay your year.
Instructions
  1. Pre-heat oven to 170°C and line and grease a 9 inch loaf tin.
  2. Beat the sweet potato, eggs, cashew butter and coconut oil in a large mixing bowl or food mixer.
  3. In another mixing bowl combine the coconut flour, tapioca flour, walnuts, chia seeds, almonds, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, sesame seeds, flaxseed, turmeric, baking powder and sea salt.
  4. Tip the dry ingredients into the sweet potato mixture and beat until well combined.
  5. Pour into the loaf tin and bake for 50-55 minutes or until an inserted cocktail stick comes out clean.
Recipe Notes

*To prepare the sweet potato I bake my sweet potatoes by wrapping them individually in tin foil then placing them in a baking dish. I then bake them for between 1-1½ hours depending on how big the potato is. I then leave the potatoes to cool a little then unwrap the foil and peel away the skin with my fingers which comes away very easily. Then I refrigerate the potatoes until needed.

Bacon Jam and Bread

Sometimes all that will do is a bit of jam and bread. Usually when I’ve had a bit of a Sound of Music singalong and can’t get that damn lyric out of my head. It’s a sign. But I’m doing a gluten-free month and jam and bread isn’t totally on board with that.

Unless… it’s gluten-free bread. Now, I don’t know if you have ever tried supermarket sold gluten-free bread but the word cardboard springs to mind. It’s really only good for emergency toastings with lashings of butter to moisten up the arid texture. So when I spied this little number at a farm shop in North London I bought it on a whim, unconvinced it could bring me round to gluten-free bread.

gluten free bread flourActually I’ve been pleasantly surprised, I was convinced it was going to be an inedible disaster but this bread it really works. I started out with a quick soda bread recipe which has been tried and tested in my kitchen many times. Gluten-free breads have a tighter texture so benefit from eating on the day of the bake but since it only takes a few minutes of stirring around with a bit of buttermilk and then 45 mins in the oven, it really is a cinch to pull together.
Gluten Free Bread | Stroud Green Larder
gluten free bread
gluten free soda breadI may have spoilt myself slightly with the jam but I know you’ll understand. About a year ago I attended a bacon masterclass held by Niamh Shields of Eatlikeagirl where we learnt how to make bacon jam, bacon brownies and bacon fudge. It was pretty intense and I absolutely fell in love with the bacon jam. In fact anybody who tries it falls it love, it’s the Ryan Gosling of jams. There is a reason why it swept the internet by storm last year so my inclusion of it here is a bit of a last ditch attempt to join the party.  The umami hit of maple syrup candied with salty smoky bacon and a hint of bourbon is just out of this world and then sweet chilli kicks in at the end to make you go cor blimey. If you try any recipe this weekend and you haven’t eaten bacon jam, then go for it and I promise you will not be disappointed. You must buy the best bacon you can get hold of and I recommend you make as much as you can as it lasts for ages in the fridge and used in dozens of ways. You can eat it cold straight from the jar or warmed up which is how I prefer it. Add a couple of teaspoons to spaghetti bolognaise, winter casseroles or run some through fine beans or mashed potato for outstanding side dishes.
For my jam on bread, I also added a layer of mashed avocado which added a cool creamy texture underneath the jam, it was absolutely heavenly. I’ve had it two meals in a row and am planning it for a third.
Bacon Jam on Gluten Free Bread | Stroud Green Larder
Gluten-Free Sunflower Soda Bread

Adapted from Rachel’s Allen’s Bake

450g Gluten-free bread flour
1 tsp caster sugar
1 tsp salt
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
350-425ml buttermilk
1 tbsp sunflower seeds

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 230°C.
  2. Sift all the dry ingredients together.
  3. Make a well in the centre of the dry ingredients and add 350ml of buttermilk. Bring the mixture together with one hand. The dough should be soft but not sticky. Add more buttermilk if you need to.
  4. Without kneading, as this will create a heavy loaf, pat into a large circle then place on a baking tray. With a sharp knife draw a cross in the centre then scatter the sunflower seeds over the top.
  5. Bake at 220°C for 15 mins then turn the oven down to 200°C for 45 mins.
  6. Eat warm straight from the oven.
gluten free white soda breadBacon Jam

Makes about 500ml

450g streaky bacon, diced
1 large onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, crushed
60ml cider vinegar
185ml freshly brewed coffee
50g soft brown sugar
60ml maple syrup
60ml bourbon
2 tsp chipotle in adobo
½ tsp cumin

  1. Put the bacon in a large saucepan and cook on a medium heat until the bacon really crisps up, stirring all the while to keep it from sticking. Remove from the heat and set aside.
  2. Add the onion to the pan and cook on a very low heat. After 5 mins add the garlic then continue cooking until the onion begins to caramelise, it should take around 20 mins.
  3. Pour in the vinegar to deglaze the pan.
  4. Add the bacon back in, as well as the coffee, brown sugar, maple syrup, bourbon, chipotle, cumin and some black pepper.
  5. The heat should be on the very lowest setting and cook for about 2 hours for the jam to reduce.
  6. When it’s ready, turn off the heat and pour into a sterlised jar. Keep the jam in the fridge ready for whenever you need it.