Bread plays an important role during the long winter months, be it as part of a comforting door-stop sandwich or simply to accompany a hearty bowl of soup. As such, it’s important to keep your choice in bread fresh and varied; five months of white bread isn’t entirely appealing. In this situation it’s best to bring a little extra flavour and texture to the mix. This recipe for Seed and Honey Bread delivers in spades on both counts.
With recipes like this, it is a real shame to use only white bread flour, and I often find wholemeal to be a little ungainly and unpleasant to work with. It is far better to replace around a quarter to a third of the total quantity of white flour with that of an older, more rustic grain like spelt or rye. Using just a little of either grain gives homemade bread a more complex, enjoyable flavour and a slightly improved texture, without weighing down the final product.
There’s nothing more comforting than waking up to a frosty morning and slathering a thick slice of toast with a generous portion of good quality honey. Adding a tablespoon of honey to a loaf has a very similar effect, serving to sweeten, develop depth of flavour and even preserve your bread. You’ll find that any honey will do, though if there are options available I’d suggest choosing a relatively mild example, as it shouldn’t be given the chance to dominate the subtle flavour of the seeds. For the ultimate in comfort eating, why not toast a slice of this bread and spread it with a set honey of your choice. Heaven.
Seed and Honey Bread
Makes 1 medium boule
• 300g white bread flour
• 100g rye flour
• 1 tsp salt
• 50g mixed seeds + extra to roll
• 260ml tepid water
• 7g sachet fast-action yeast
• 1 tbsp honey
• 3 tbsp olive oil
1. In a measuring jug, gently whisk together the water, honey and yeast – set aside.
2. Take a large mixing bowl and thoroughly combine the flours, salt and seeds.
3. Make a well in the centre of the flour and tip in the yeast mixture and olive oil. Bring together into soft dough – you may have to alter the amount of water to achieve this.
4. Knead the dough on a floured surface for 8-10 minutes and return it to a lightly oiled bowl. Cover with a cloth and set in a warm place to double in size (~1 hour).
5. Turn the dough out on to a floured surface and knock back. Shape into a boule, roll in a handful of seeds, place on a lightly oiled baking tray, cover and return to a warm place to prove.
6. Once springy to the touch and roughly doubled in size, heat your oven to 220C/200C(fan) and bake for 30-35 minutes until dark brown. It should sound hollow when tapped on its base. Set aside to cool before slicing.
Cost: Good quality honey may cost a fair whack, but it does go a long way – particularly in bread. Indeed, though this loaf does have a few added ingredients it should set you back no more than £1.50. Far cheaper than an equivalent loaf at a supermarket or bakery!
30 replies on “Seed and Honey Bread”
That looks a wonderful bread.
Thank you, Kay!
Love the sound of this – I totally agree there is nothing better than starting the day with a toasted slice of bread topped with honey (although in my case you also add a little butter underneath and a sprinkle of sea salt on top). We have been going through a fair amount of homemade bread as well – it just goes so well with everything! Might have to try a seed and honey version like yours next time I am baking!
Thank you, Sophia. I like your way, it sounds gourmet :D. Please do!
That looks like a very tasty recipe. My toast topping of choice at the moment is almond butter. It is quite expensive (and therefore not very frugal) but it is so delicious.
Do you think this recipe would work in a bread machine? I enjoy making my own bread but when I don’t have time, the bread machine is great!
Thank you, Grace! Almond butter sounds yum. Yes, I think it’d work fine in a machine!
That is some gorgeous bread, Nick! Looks like the perfect accompaniment for soup!
Thank you very much – it was indeed!
Looks like a perfect loaf. In my opinion, the seedier, the better! I really do need to start trying my hand at baking bread!
Seed and bread go together wonderfully – I agree! Thanks 😀
This sounds delicious, I tried some pumpkin and honey bread on Monday and it was lovely. Might give this a go over the weekend!
Oh yum – that sounds really nice!
Now I’m off to find rye flour, this loaf looks great and sounds easy enough to prepare.
Glad to hear it – rye is delicious!
I made it and loved it! (even without the seeds – those come next time;) I’ve baked it in a simple loaf pan and even this way turned out great, thank you for the recipe!
Fantastic! Yes, give the seeds a whirl. I probably would have baked it in a loaf pan if I had a suitable one!
[…] Simple flavours, quality ingredients and the economic use of both, pretty much sums up my attitude to food. Though not always appropriate or achievable, an effective way to maximise the enjoyment of whatever delights may be lurking within your pantry is simply to place them in the general vicinity of one another and let your mouth do the… chewing. Unfortunately, there appears to be a tendency in “food” to perform awfully clever tricks, when all that needs to be done is provide exceptional combinations of food with a meeting place. Truly, there can be no better surface on which my recipe for Poached Eggs with Anchovies to converge than a slice of my homemade mixed seed and honey loaf. […]
Gorgeous loaf! I couldn’t agree more about adding spelt or rye to your dough.
Thank you! I love interesting flours – they add an extra dimension.
I make a huge loaf of sourdough every few days but i really need to try out a few different breads – I love this kind of loaf…so tasty and filling. I will promised myself that I’ll buy some interesting flours and seeds this weekend!
I’ve still not made a sourdough. I feel like I just want someone to come and guide me through it to make it seem less… long. I know I’m just being a weak foodie! Interesting flours make the world go round.
This looks amazing! I am definitely going to have to try it!!
Please, please do!
Bread baking is the best and yes I agree the cold weather does warrant for more bread eating! Rye flour is a good substitute for the regular whole wheat flour. Adding seeds is always a plus. Love it!! 🙂
Indeed it does – which is bad in terms of weight :D. Need to do more exercise to make up for it! Seeds ARE a must.
[…] 2. Remove the thyme and bay leaves from the pot. Tip in the peas and chickpeas and blend until smooth. Bring back up to temperature, season to taste and serve with a side of homemade bread. […]
Looks so yummy