Bread and Pumpkins

In response to correspondence from my last post. Thanks so much for the feedback.

I buy a special variety of pumpkin seed called "Austrian Oil Seed"pumpkin from Kings seeds in Auckland. I think their catalogue might be available to Australians too. These pumpkins have no hulls on their seed so you simply scoop out the seeds, dry them in the sun and they are ready to use as in my last post. I'm too lazy to shell regular pumpkin seed so we feed that to the animals. My Dad use to roast them in the old coal range then we'd all sit around cracking them open with hammers. A good activity in downshifting I suppose? The flesh of the Austrian oil seed pumpkins is not to my liking so we cook it up for the chooks and that's how you turn pumpkins into eggs! The reason I don't save my own pumpkin seed but buy fresh each year is that pumpkins cross pollinate so easily that within a few years the fruit would no longer be true to seed and I'd be back to pumpkin seed with hard shells. It can be done though, you have to get the whole neighbourhood to grow only one variety and then save seed from it or you have to hand pollinate then tape up flowers and mark the pumpkin. Koanga Gardens in Northland describe the technique well in their Garden Centre Guide by Kay Baxter, which I currently have on loan from a friend. It is a skill I aspire to master but will leave it until I have time for such activities.

I base my bread recipe on Alison Holst's basic white bread recipe. At the kneading stage I add approximately 1/2 - 1 cup of cooked brown rice. This keeps the bread fresh and moist longer. At the end of kneading I add seeds and sprinkle extra on top. I'm a beginner bread maker too and am just experimenting with what I can add. I often add some wholemeal flour too but it doesn't rise as big and the kids won't eat it as enthusiastically. I'm introducing it slowly.

Here's Alison Holst's basic recipe:
1-1@1/2 tsp Surebake or similar yeast
2 tsp sugar
2 cups warm water (as warm as a babies bath)
3 cups high grade white flour
2 tbsp oil or melted butter
2 tsp salt
2-3 cups of extra flour
My additions cooked brown rice and seeds, experiment with quantities.

Put the first three ingredients into a big bowl and mix well. When the yeast has dissolved, stir in the first measure of flour. Cover the bowl with a plate or glad wrap and put in a warm place for 30 mins. ( In the warming cupboard or near the fire. It needs to rise to about twice the original size.
Stir the mixture to deflate it then stir in oil or butter, salt and as much flour as you need to make a dough which is firm enough to form a ball (add rice here). Turn it onto a floured bench to knead. Knead dough for 10-15 mins add flour to stop sticking on bench and hands. You know it's ready when it kind of starts to spring back and it looks different, kind of satiny.(add some seeds here.)
Halve dough and put into buttered loaf tins with room to rise to twice it's size. Press seeds on top you might need to brush loaf with melted butter first to make them stick better. Stand bread in warm place again till risen to twice it's size. Bake at 200 C for about 30 mins or until lightly browned.


ElisabethB said...

Thank you for your answer . I thought that you eat seeds from your own pumpkins !!! So, I will try to find some seeds in my organic shop which didn't came from China ;-))) We bought too pumpkins seeds oil like saisonning and we love it !

Gillybean said...

Sorry If I wasn't clear. YES we eat seeds from pumpkins we grew. They come from a special pumpkin, "Austrian Oil Seed" as above. Gilly

Christy said...

nice to stumble on a gardening related blog from the same part of the world, i do find the opposite hemisphere ones quite confusing sometimes! you've inspired me to grow our own pumpkin seeds next year - thanks for sharing, christy

Jannelle said...

Love the photograph! Very organic! Jannelle / Heart Felt / www.teatodtoad.typepad.com