Hello, friends! A lot's happened since I last blogged. I've had a surge of celebration cakes for people which I've loved making as each new design challenges in me in so many different ways. Then we spent a month eating our way around New Zealand! It was a fabulous trip with family and friends which was passed in a LOT of restaurants and cafes and bakeries eating the most amazing tapas, brunches and sweet treats. I found inspiration in all corners of the country! And I've been reading and consuming cookery books and magazines and recipes. I've come back feeling fresh and with lots of wonderful food ideas. Instagram continues to be my microblog and food journey but my favourite recipes to share with you are here :)
When I'm not making celebration cakes, my days are often a whirlwind of chores, studying, networking and meeting up with friends - all of which are great and I feel important for my mental wellbeing. I fit these in around baking and photographing. I don't always eat well. I'd love to tell you that I make all our food from scratch and I never indulge in the treats I find in everyday life. But time doesn't always allow for these things.
So I love having recipes in my repertoire that are easy to make, delicious and versatile. Something I could make in the morning and eat for my lunch (and as lunch for the following few days) as well as a super brunch or lunch recipe for weekends with friends and family. I originally stumbled upon the recipe for this Brunch Loaf from Kelly Gibney (based in New Zealand) who has written her first cookbook, Wholehearted. It's gluten free and is packed with flavoursome ingredients like olives, cheddar cheese and sun-dried tomatoes whilst the gluten free part comes from a mix of almonds and sweet potato. There is a small amount of chopping and grating and then this is a one-bowl recipe!
The resulting loaf is packed with flavour, great texture and looks stunning. I enjoy it served slightly warm with some olive butter but it's also a great accompaniment for salads or an Italian platter of meats and cheeses. Whilst you need to be conscious of the timings (it takes slightly less than an hour to bake and then needs another forty-five minutes to rest), it's quick to assemble and the oven does most of the hard work.
What I really love about it is that I feel like I'm making a conscious effort to eat more healthily (being gluten free) but that doesn't compromise the taste in any way. And that they are ways to customise this for each and every baker. I love the idea of adding roasted peppers and/or feta cheese to my next loaf. And anything that makes you think about the next time you're going to bake it, must mean it's a winner!
I hope you enjoy it as much as I do and I'd love to hear what ingredients you'd put into it too to tickle your tastebuds.
Wishing you all a wonderful weekend - and if you're also in London, let's hope the sun makes an appearance for us! xxx
Brunch Loaf with Sundried Tomatoes and Green Olives
adapted from a recipe from Kelly Gibney's Wholehearted
- 15 green olives (jarred)
- 5 sundried tomatoes (jarred)
- 135g sweet potato, peeled and coarsely grated
- 100g cheddar cheese, coarsely grated
- 5 large eggs
- 250g almond meal
- 1 tsp (rounded) baking powder (gluten-free variety if required)
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- sprinkling of sea salt
- cracked black pepper
- selection of pumpkin seeds, chia seeds and a few additional sliced green olives for the top (or other seeds like sunflower seeds as you prefer)
- basil leaves to dress
- loaf tin, greased and lined (I use a 23cm loaf tin)
- Preheat the oven to 150 degrees (fan)
- Grease and line your loaf tin
- Start by slicing each of the green olives into three and each of the sundried tomatoes into thin strips
- Grate the sweet potato and cheddar cheese
- Crack the five eggs into a large bowl and then whisk them lightly together
- Mix in the almonds and baking powder
- Add the rest of the ingredients and mix through until they're well combined
- Fill the loaf tin with the mix and smooth the surface with a spatula or spoon
- Sprinkle your toppings across the surface of the loaf
- Bake it for around 45-50 minutes - you're looking for it to be lovely and brown in colour and for a skewer to come out clean from the centre
- Allow it to cool for 45 minutes
- Best enjoyed with a light salad and a spread of olive butter :)