Recipe for Brown Buttermilk Rusks – absolutely delectable with a big cup of tea or coffee

1kg self-raising cake flour
1kg Nutty Wheat flour (or an equivalent light brown flour)
4 tsp baking powder
2 cups sugar
1 cup sunflower seeds
1 tbs salt
2 extra large or jumbo eggs
2 cartons buttermilk
4 tbs milk
500g butter

How to
Making these buttermilk rusks is so easy, my cat can do it. Simply… Preheat your oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Spray two large breadpans with Spray ’n Cook (or smear lightly with butter).

Mix all the dry ingredients, including the sunflower seeds, in a large mixing bowl. In a separate bowl whisk the eggs with the buttermilk and milk. Melt die butter in another bowl – I just pop it in the micro, but you can of course melt it on the stove.

Add the egg/buttermilk mixture to the dry ingredients and stir through. Now add the butter and knead very lightly just until everything is mixed through. (If you’re squeemish you could try doing this with a spoon, but hands REALLY do work better!)

Now you can divide the dough between the two pans and just sort of pat it in. But my gran (bless her cotton socks) would turn in her grave. No, the proper way to do it and get nicely rounded rusks on top, is to make large balls (about the size of jumbo eggs) and snuggle them in next to each other until your pan is full.

Pop the pans in the oven and bake for 50-60 minutes or until cooked through. (As with a cake, you test it by inserting a thin sharp object like a paring knife. If it comes out clean, it’s ready. If dough sticks to it, bake it a bit longer.) Once done, remove and cool in the pans. Now slice the loaf (like bread) into thick slices of 3-4cm. Then cut each slice into three or four fingers. Voila, perfect rusks! Place them on baking trays and dry out in a low 80 degree Celsius oven until rock hard. It takes quite a few hours. Store these buttermilk rusks in airtight containers and get yourself over to the shops for more ingredients, because your family will demolish these puppies in no time.

If you prefer, you can use only Nutty Wheat flour, but then you’ll need another 4 teaspoons of baking powder. You can add sultanas if you like. And if you loathe sunflower seeds, simply leave them out.

Recipe by Lizet Hartley, courtesy of Melkkos & Merlot, a bilingual blog about food.

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