Crunchy seeded granary plait

Crunchy seeded granary plait

How to Cook Bread
1 large plaited loaf
Peter Cassidy

Don’t feel daunted by the prospect of using unusual seeds, and in such volume. The idea of this loaf is to provide as much crunchy texture and toasty, nutty flavour as possible, from a good variety of seeds. Experiment with the seed mix until you find your favourite combination. Marmite may seem an unlikely addition, but it lends a satisfyingly savoury flavour. You can use a mixture of milk and plain yoghurt in place of the buttermilk.


Quantity Ingredient
150ml whole milk
55g butter
2 teaspoons marmite, (optional)
150ml buttermilk
20g fresh yeast
1 teaspoon caster sugar
225g granary flour
225g strong white flour, plus extra to dust
1 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
oil, to grease
2 tablespoons sunflower seeds
2 tablespoons golden linseeds
1 tablespoon pumpkin seeds
1 tablespoon flax seeds
1 tablespoon chia seeds
1 tablespoon poppy seeds, to finish


  1. Pour the milk into a small saucepan and bring to scalding point over a medium heat. Remove from the heat, transfer 2 tbsp to a small bowl and set aside to cool to tepid, about 38°C.
  2. Cut the butter into small dice and add to the milk in the pan. Add the Marmite, if using, and stir until melted, then leave to cool until tepid. Stir in the buttermilk. Add the yeast and sugar to the tepid milk in the small bowl and stir to dissolve.
  3. Mix the flours and salt in a large bowl. Break one of the eggs into a small bowl, beat lightly and add to the flour, along with the yeast mixture and the milk and Marmite mixture. Use a cutlery knife to distribute the liquid evenly and bring the ingredients together into a dough. When the dough is beginning to form, use your hands to bring it together.
  4. Turn onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 5–8 minutes until smooth and elastic. Put the dough in a very lightly oiled bowl, cover with lightly oiled cling film and leave to rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
  5. Transfer the risen dough back to the work surface and pat it out with the palm of your hand into a rough disc. Scatter all the seeds, except the poppy seeds, over the dough, leaving a clear margin, then gather the edges to encase the seeds.
  6. Knock back the dough by kneading until the seeds are distributed evenly throughout the dough, about 1–2 minutes.
  7. Divide the dough into 3 equal pieces and shape into a plait. Place the plait on a lightly oiled baking sheet, cover with lightly oiled cling film and leave to prove in a warm place until risen to at least half its size again, and if you press the dough lightly with your finger, it leaves only a small indentation. Meanwhile, heat the oven to 200°C.
  8. Beat the remaining egg with a fork and sieve it. Brush the risen plaited loaf with the beaten egg and sprinkle over the poppy seeds.
  9. Bake in the top third of the oven for 25–30 minutes until golden, then transfer to a wire rack; it should feel light for its size and sound hollow when tapped on the underside. If not, return to the oven to cook for a further 5 minutes, upside down. Leave to cool on a wire rack.


  • To make a crunchy seeded cob rather than shape the loaf into a plait, you can simply form it into a tight ball. Flatten it slightly on the oiled baking sheet before glazing and baking as above.
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