I love bread, especially wholewheat with lots of seeds. Really good bread tastes best with only olive oil and salt, some salted butter or even just as it is.

At my daughter’s kindergarten, they bake bread with the kids every day. As soon as my daughter comes in, she is handed a piece of dough and she starts rolling her bread of the day herself. It is such a beautiful sight to see all the 2- and 3-year olds knead their own little buns and make all kinds of shapes (snakes ans snails are favorite). It really calms them down as well. It’s nice to knead. That’s still true for grownups, by the way.

I felt inspired to start my own starter dough for sourdough bread. I spend a lot of time in Germany, where bread is still made with sourdough in stead of yeast and ‘bread enhancer’ (yuk!), as has unfortunately become practice in The Netherlands. But this is not meant to be rant.

I started a sourdough as soon as we landed in Germany for a couple of months, enjoyed the delicious bread here for a week or two or so, then checked my belly and – oh. Bread. I love bread, but it really makes me bloat. No idea why. I am not convinced gluten are bad per se, nor carbohydrates, nor yeast or sourdough bacteria – I just know that bread makes my belly grow and I look like I’m 5 months pregnant.

Exit sourdough. Not worth the effort of feeding a dough every couple of days and keeping the bacteria balance in check, if I end up never eating the bread.

But I still love bread, and will bake my own every now and then. I use ready made, store-bought wholewheat bread mix. Perfect for the occasion and my lifestyle. Thank you, Koopmans & co.

This bread is sweet, rather healthy and very special due to the banana surprise. Really delicious!

Wholewheat bread with pumpkin seeds & banana

For 3-4 big buns

Cut 2 bananas in the middle once lengthwise and once crosswise, so that you have eight long pieces of banana.

Mix and knead the bread as indicated on the box.  Add raisins to taste (I like to add a lot). Divide into 3-4 portions and let the dough rise. Then roll out the dough portions and fold each in three (as indicated on the box), but add a banana piece in each fold and sprinkle with pumpkin seeds and cinnamon (again, I like to add a lot 🙂 ) before folding over. Each bun is now folded in three and has two pieces of banana folded in.

Leave to rise again and bake in the oven as indicated.