Jane's Delicious Garden
“To forget how to dig the earth and to tend the soil is to forget ourselves.”
One late summer we stayed with our friends David and Gill in southern England. We went for long walks in forests, picked wild brambleberries and ate plenty of pub lunches. David loved making bread and every morning we would wake up to the smell of a freshly baked loaf. This bread is adapted from one of his recipes for an apple and cheese loaf.
I tried it one year when the summer squash harvest grew completely out of hand. The squash makes the bread moist and flavourful and the cheese adds a scrumptious crunchy crust. This bread is not only delicious but is also very quick to make.
500 g cake flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
60 g chilled butter
4 cups grated squash (deseeded if necessary)
125 g grated cheddar cheese
2 eggs, beaten
toasted sunflower seeds for sprinkling
Preheat the oven to 180° C. Grease 2 medium loaf tins with oil. Sift the flour, baking powder and salt together into a large bowl. Quickly rub the butter into the flour with your fingers until well mixed – it should resemble breadcrumbs.
Stir the grated squash and cheese into the flour. Add the beaten eggs and mix well.
Spoon the batter into the loaf tins, pushing it into the corners and smoothing the top. Sprinkle with sunflower seeds and bake for 1½ to 2 hours until it is golden brown. It is ready when a skewer stuck into the middle comes out clean. Turn onto a wire rack to cool.
The bigger the squash the more watery they are. If your squash are smaller and drier, you will need to add a little liquid to the mixture after adding the eggs.
Try buttermilk or yoghurt and add a little at a time until it reaches a sticky consistency - you don't want it too wet.
Try adding chopped fresh herbs such as oregano or rosemary.