I walked down to the kitchen yesterday and was a bit too late- my mom prepared a gluten-free loaf of oregano bread. It was sitting in the plate for 30 minutes to rise, so I had time to get her exact recipe and write it down.
Oregano, known as za’tar, is a very healthy herb. It’s full of Vitamin K, iron, fiber, and even calcium. It’s usually eaten dipped with Olive Oil and bread, and this bun recipe put a twist on the traditional. Thanks mom. :))
This week for my health advice column in the newspaper, someone asked whether 35 calorie toast was a good idea. I emphasized on the misconception of calories in this country, and how people are so desperately trying to eat “low-fat,” sugar-free,” and “low-calorie” foods- parallel to the obesity epidemic we see.
Food is meant to give us energy, and calories are energy. If we are trying to replace these calories with scientific lab made chemicals in order to make them low-calorie, fat-free, and sugar-free, while retaining their flavor, texture, and not to mention shelf-life, then we have a problem. Not only are these chemicals and preservatives unnatural, some are very hazardous to our health. Bread is meant to be made of a few ingredients, water, flour, yeast, salt, and sometimes milk. The addition of 30 preservatives and unpronounceable chemicals is unnecessary. Obviously, corporations are not looking to feed us well, not if it means a tighter wallet for them. Don’t be fooled by a bag of bread advertising itself to you.
At the end of the day, there’s nothing like the smell of fresh baked bread in the house. So these buns could be made with gluten-free all purpose flour, or organic unbleached flour. If you plan to use whole wheat flour instead, be wary that it may change the texture of the dough.
1 cup warm water
3 teaspoons dry active yeast
1 pinch organic coconut palm sugar (any sugar will do)
4 cups organic unbleached flour or gluten-free all purpose flour
1 organic cage free egg
1 organic cage free egg yolk
1 teaspoon Himalayan Salt (feel free to use any salt you’re used to)
1 cup whole Oregano leaves (za’tar) soaked and drained
1 cup organic goat cheese
1 cup organic feta cheese
1/3 cup fresh or dried parsley
1 tablespoon Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2 organic cage free eggs, beaten
¼ cup Organic whole Sesame Seeds
1/8 cup whole black seeds
1/8 cup Organic whole Flax Seeds
1 tablespoon chia seeds
- Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Prepare two flat cookie sheets.
- Place the warm water in a cup with yeast and sugar. Allow to sit for several minutes.
- Place all dough ingredients (including the water/yeast mixture) in your food processor and pulse until dough-like texture forms. It shouldn’t take too long.
- Place tough in a glass Pyrex and cover with wax paper for about 20-30 minutes, or until it rises well.
- Meanwhile, beat the eggs (toppings) in a separate bowl.
- In another bowl, mix all the seeds (toppings) and set aside.
- In a large bowl, mix all the cheese filling ingredients well.
- When the dough rises, take a small round in your palm and flatten just a bit. Fill with a scoop of the cheese filling and close with your fingers pressing together the edges well.
- Dip the top of the bun with the egg topping, followed immediately by the seeds topping. Place on the baking dish.
- Follow step 8 and 9 for all the buns until you run out of dough.
- Bake in the oven for 10-12 minutes or until golden brown. Don’t mind if the cheese pops out from one side or the other- it’s what makes them look great. ;)
- Serve warm with a cup of hot tea.