Vegan walnut loaf for a happy start of New 2017

It is time to celebrate the end of another year. I am positive that we will make a good progress in the New 2017, there are many challenges and I decided to be positive about the outcomes.

This walnut loaf is a remake of my grandma’s old recipe. It adds a bit of sugar, I allowed myself to eat, to the New Year’s potluck. The loaf is great since it keeps fresh and one can eat it nicely even after the party is over, for the next few days. Perhaps avoid making too much of it.

I have to be extra careful about what I eat because of my condition (Hashimoto’s), I am off dairy and some other random foods by necessity and off the chocolate by choice. I reduced eating cakes to once every couple of months at most. But what would the life be without an occasional sin. And New Year’s celebration is an ideal excuse for it.

What goes in the loaf?

500 g flour

100 mL of sunflower oil

300 mL oat milk (feel free to test other vegan variants, I did not try them so far)

Zest of one lemon

10 g fresh or dried yeast

1 tsp salt

1 tsp sugar

200 g walnuts (you can substitute with hazelnuts, or poppy seeds)

50 g sugar (it will be just enough, if you prefer more sweet, add more sugar)

100 mL oat milk

75 g raisins (I like to have an extra raisin or two, if you don’t reduce the amount)

Zest of one lemon

How to make the loaf?

Set your oven to 55C |130 F (when I was a kid, we used to put it on the heater, but now we have floor heating, and our dog eats everything she finds on the floor, so we use our oven).

Mix yeast and 1 tsp of sugar and add pre-warmed oat milk (should not be boiling, but nicely warm, if you burned your toungue by trying it, it was too warm). Leave to raise for 10 minutes.

Add the yeast mix to the flour. Add oil, salt and lemon zest. Knead the dough. It should be firm, and not stick to your hands. If it is too dry, add a bit more of the oat milk (be careful not to overdo it).

Put the dough in the bowl and leave it in the oven to rise for 30 min.

Knead it a bit (if you have the time, put it again in the oven and leave to rise for another 30 min. Two times will make the dough a bit airier).

Increase the oven temperature to 200C |390 F.

For the filling: heat up the oat milk and mix with walnuts. Add sugar, raisins and lemon zest. It should have consistecy of a jam.

Roll the dough out on the baking paper, it should be about 1 cm|0.5 in thick and the size of 40 cm x 50 cm (15 in x 20 in).

Spread the topping on top of the dough, roll it together and put in the baking tray that will support the rolled form. Let it rise for about 10 min outside the oven. Put in the oven and bake for about 30 min.

When done, wait until cooled off and cut into 2 cm|1 in thick slices.

It is good with tea / milk / rum; as breakfast, dinner, desert or for the afternoon tea. Its good for the hangover too ;)

Enjoy it responsibly and a Happy New 2017!

Vedrana Högqvist Tabor