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Little Ellie's Spelt and Wheat loaf.

My 9 year old granddaughter was recently advised to "avoid wheat and dairy", pending a visit to an allergy specialist. She loves bread so I tried various gluten-and wheat free flours with minimal success at tasting time ("yeuk!"), before we discovered accidentally that she showed no reaction to my baking when I use "ordinary" Shipton Mill products. The only challenge was to find something that passed the taste test and sparked no alllergic reaction. I have a spreadsheet of all the different combinations we tried before we lit upon a loaf that ticks all the boxes.

Please note:After originally posting this as "Ellie's loaf", I found that there was already a contribution from an "Ellie". As she got here first I have retitled this as "Little Ellie's", with apologies to the original!



50 grams wholemeal spelt flour

50 grams white spelt flour

10 grams dried yeast

300 mls water (I use it straight from the tap)

Pinch of sugar


Half tsp salt

2 tbsp "Pure" soya margarine (or other dairy-free alternative)

50 grams stoneground wholemeal flour

250 grams strong white flour.


For the starter, place the spelt flours in a bowl with the sugar and yeast, pour in the water and whisk. Then cover with clingfilm and leave.

Once the starter starts showing signs of vigorous activity, add the remaining ingredients and mix to a rough dough. At this point I generally cover and leave to "rest" for 5 minutes. Turn out onto a floured surface and knead for about 10 minutes until you have a smoothe dough that "springs back" to the touch. Oil your mixing bowl (I'm a fan of "one-Cal" olive oil spray), return the dough to the bowl, cover with clingfilm and leave to rise.

Once your dough has doubled in size, turn out onto a floured board and knock back to remove all the bubbles. Shape the dough into a tight ball with floured hands, and then to your final preferred loaf shape.

As "Ellie's loaves" are primarily used for school packed lunch sandwiches, she prefers "tin" shape, so oil a 2lb loaf tin, shape your dough into a rectangle the same width as the tin, roll tightly and place in the tin. Cover and leave to prove. In the meantime set your oven to maximum.

Once your loaf has proved (doubled in size) set the oven at 250C, carefully slash the top of the loaf diagonally 3 times with a very sharp knife (I know someone who uses a razor blade) and place in the oven.

I usually cook for 5 minutes at 250c, 10 minutes at 230c and judge the final 5 minutes, depending on the the colour at 190c or 180c (Ellie doesn't like it too dark).

When done turn out onto a wire rack to cool.

At this point I put my feet up and wait for the next call "Grandad....."

Tip: Depending on the brand of spelt used, the initail dough can be very wet, but I find a handful of wholemeal flour renders it more "manageable".