This is a rather personal recipe for me and an emotional one too as so many wonderful memories crop up from my childhood. My great grandmother waking up at the crack of dawn to prepare the dough, the proving, the baking and the smell, oh my the sweet smell of cardamom and saffron…you just know it meant sheermal. So, how can I describe it? Well, It’s a slightly sweet, golden and soft sweet bread you bite into enthusiastically ! You can slather I with butter and jam but I just love it on its own or with a drizzle of honey. Here is the recipe, I hope it gives you great memories, too.
A small pinch of ground saffron steeped in 50ml of boiling water
4 tablespoons of water
400g of gluten free plain flour
70g of stevia
50ml of olive oil plus extra for glazing
150 ml of almond milk
4g of fast action dried yeast
Pinch of sea salt
1 teaspoon of black sesame seeds or nigella seeds
Some jam of choice, to serve
1 To start off, add all of your dried ingredients in a large mixing bowl and mix well. Now add your olive oil, milk and saffron and mix again to form a dough, don’t worry it will be sticky at this stage but it will come together. Cover your bowl and leave somewhere warm for about 2 hours.
2 Now preheat your oven to gas mark 6 and line a couple of baking sheets with greaseproof paper, set aside.
3 Once your dough has proved, knock it back gently with your hand and divide it into 6 equal portions. Dust your worksurface with flour and roll out each portion gently. Transfer the rounds to your baking tray and brush with olive oil and the sesame seeds. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown and eat warm…with lashing of jam and honey!