Following on from my article on ‘Fueling for Ultra Endurance Cycling,’ I received a lot of interest around the home made nutrition options that were mentioned. These being:
- The Banana Bread;
- The Rice Cakes;
- The Organic Sourdough Bread.
As promised, I’ve put together a series of recipes so that you too, can enhance your performance on the bike and save some money whilst doing so.
1. David Bryant's ' Bravo Banana Bread'
Makes 1 loaf (10 slices)
- No butter or oil
- 2 eggs
- 3-4 medium ripe bananas
- 200g pot set yoghurt
- 250g wholemeal self raising flour
- 100g pitted dates
- 1tsp cinnamon
1. Preheat the oven to 180'C (Bottom heat, fan forced) and line an 11cm x 21cm loaf tin with baking paper. Coles sell a brilliant silicon baking 'tin' that requires no baking paper or butter/oil. Upon completion of baking, it can be placed into the dishwasher safely and cleaned without fuss.
2. In any large blender (I'm lucky enough to have a thermomix - stole it from my folks…;) ), add the dates and chop on a high speed so that they are broken into smaller pieces.
3. Add the remainder of the ingredients and combine at a high speed (theres nothing worse than a chunk of flour thats not properly blended upon biting into a piece of fresh banana bread.)
4. Spoon into your pre-prepared loaf tin and bake for 40-45 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean.
5. Allow to cool for 30minutes before turning out and cutting into slices.
6. Tear off 10 pieces of alfoil and wrap each slice of banana bread individually.
7. Pop into the freezer and enjoy on your next ride.
Each slice takes about 1hr to thaw when in your rear jersey pocket. Perfect for your next mid-ride snack.
2. Rice Cakes
Makes 16 Rice Cakes
- 8 cups (uncooked) of Japanese style sticky rice
- 3 cups of mixed berries
- 3/4 cup of chocolate chips
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1/2 cup coconut milk
- 10g salt
1. In a rice cooker, cook 8 cups of Japanese sticky rice. Upon completion, the rice may still appear 'wet' however this is what you want and this will assist in binding the rice cakes.
2. In a large bowl, comine the cooked rice along with all other ingredients and mix thoroughly.
3. Line 2 x muffin trays with 'patty pans' and scoop the combined mixture into the 'patty pans'
4. Allow to cool for 30min before placing into the freezer. Leave overnight.
5. Remove from the freezer and wrap each 'rice cake' individually in alfoil.
Voila, the perfect mid ride snack for your next long day on the bike.
Experiment with different ingredients, there are a range of ideas on the internet. I find this is the best mix for me, as I enjoy the mixture of berries and chocolate and find myself looking forward to eating on the bike as opposed to it feeling like a chore.
3. Organic Sourdough Loaf
Makes 1 loaf (I generally make two loaves at a time.)
- 450g strong organic bakers flour
- 300ml filtered water (the chlorine in tap water will kill the bacteria in your starter)
- 150g of sourdough starter
- 7g salt
- Nut & Seed Mixture
1. In a large blender, gently combine the flour and 290ml of the filtered water.
2. When combined, spoon the mixture (which will be quite stiff) into a plastic bowl. Cover with glad wrap and allow to rest for 45minutes
3. Add the flour/water mixture that you combined earlier to a well floured surface and add 150g of sourdough starter, the remaining 10ml of water and 7g of salt. Knead the mixture thoroughly to ensure that it is well combined. The mixture will be quite sticky at this stage.
4. Add the dough to the plastic bowl and cover with glad wrap. Let rest for 45minutes.
5. Following the 45 minutes of rest, knead the dough for another few minutes and add back to the plastic bowl.
6. Let rest for a further 45 minutes before popping into the fridge for 4hrs.
7. After resting for 4hrs, remove from the fridge and add the dough to a well floured surface. Knead for a further 5 minutes and then form into the desired loaf shape on a baking tray on a piece of grease proof paper. I tend to form my loaves into a large ball and bake them 'free form' (not in a tin). Let the loaf rise for 45minutes
8. Preheat oven to 235'C (bottom heat, fan forced)
9. Pop into the oven and bake for 15min. Drop the temperature to 215'C and bake for a further 30-35minutes.
10. Remove from the oven and let the loaf sit on a wire rack for about 1hr. (As tempting as it is, try not to eat the whole loaf in it's cooling phase...Im guilty of this!)
11. Slice into the desired thickness and add to the freezer until required.
- Experiment with different nut/seed additives and flour types. Rye flour will produce a slightly different flavoured bread, as will the type of nuts and seeds that you add.
- Always use filtered water, never use standard tap water
- You will find that this bread is far more filling than any store bought loaf.
- Because there are no preservatives added, it will not last as long as your store bought loaf. I slice and then freeze all of my loaves to ensure nothing gets mouldy and goes to waste.
- You will likely find someone on gumtree selling a sourdough starter (heck, they will generally be happy to give some to you for free!)
- Ive never made my own starter from a kit and so can't comment on the process involved in doing this. I was lucky enough to inherit a 15 year old starter from an old work colleague of mine.
Caring for your starter
Your starter is essentially a living organism and this is one of the reasons that sourdough bread is in fact so good for you. As such, you need to look after the starter. My 'care regime' is as follows:
- Once a week, add a cup full of plain white flour to your starter along with enough filtered water to form a slightly runny consistency. This is often referred to as 'the feeding process.'
- Following the removal of starter for your loaf, carry out the same 'feeding process' as above.
- I keep my starter in the fridge at all times. The only time I remove it from the fridge is just prior to forming a loaf (1hr before hand.)
- If you go away for long periods of time and are unable to feed your starter, don't stress! You will likely find a layer of mould has formed on the starter when you return. Fear not, I generally scrape the mould from my starter, feed it and voila, its as good as new.
So there you have it, three simple recipes that require minimal ingredients and minimal time in the kitchen. The beauty of preparing your own food, is that you know exactly what it contains and this allows you to eradicate any nasties.
The trend in cycling seems to be moving more and more towards ‘custom’ and this can only be seen as another form of ‘custom’, that will lead to performance gains (at a fraction of the cost of a new bike!!) Again, a big thank-you to my Nutritionist and fuelling expert, David Bryant.