Friday, October 22, 2010

Healthy Pumpkin Bread!

Fall in Missouri is beautiful...changing leaves, clear blue skies, crisp breezes....and that means it's definitely that time of year again: time for pumpkin-y baked goods!! I modified this recipe from a Babycakes NYC recipe for banana bread, since I wanted to make a pumpkin bread that was free of refined sugars, refined oils, and refined flours. I think I succeeded--it tastes amazing! Especially slathered with homemade apple butter and/or almond butter!

I processed my own pumpkin that I got at the farmers' market (see how to do it yourself here!) but you can use canned pumpkin if you like...try to get organic if possible, though!Super Healthy Vegan Pumpkin Bread (gluten-free, soy-free, sugar-free)
Modified from Babycakes NYC recipe

2 1/2 cups gluten free all-purpose flour (or whole wheat pastry flour if you like)
2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp sea salt
1 tsp xantham gum (use tapioca or arrowroot if unavailable)
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp allspice
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp cloves
1/2 c coconut oil, melted
2/3 cup agave nectar
2/3 cup almond milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 Tbs ground flaxseed + 2 Tbs warm water
1 1/2 cup pumpkin puree

Preheat oven to 375 F. Lightly oil a loaf pan.
In a large bowl, sift together the dry ingredients (flour through cloves). Create a well in the center of the bowl and add in the wet ingredients. Whisk the wet ingredients together and incorporate into the dry ingredients, until completely mixed. Fold in the walnuts.
Pour into the oiled loaf pan; the batter is thick, so use a spoon to press the batter all the way down into the pan and ensure all air bubbles are pushed out. Smooth the top and sprinkle with extra cinnamon and walnuts if desired.
Bake for 30 minutes, rotate pan 180 degrees in the oven, and bake 20 more minutes, until an inserted toothpick comes out clean and the bread springs back slightly when touched.
Let cool in the pan at least 30 minutes before removing.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Maple Apple Scones

I went apple picking this week and thought scones would be the perfect outlet for my abundance of sweet and juicy apples! These are lovely for an autumn afternoon with tea, slathered with plenty of Earth Balance, of course. They would probably lend themselves well to a nice helping of homemade apple butter as well! I wanted to make a scone recipe that was sweetened only with maple syrup, and it is made with whole grain flour, so they're pretty good for you, too! Maple Apple Scones (makes 12 scones)
5 cups whole spelt flour (or gluten free baking flour)
1 tsp sea salt
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp allspice

1/2 cup vegan margarine, cold
1/2 cup vegan non-hydrogenated vegetable shortening, cold

3 cups apples, diced small

1 cup soymilk + whisked with 1/4 cup cornstarch or arrowroot powder
1/2 cup pure maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp maple extract
1 tsp apple cider vinegar

1 Tbs oil or melted margarine

Preheat oven to 375 F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and allspice.
Cut in the margarine and shortening with a strong fork or pastry cutter until the mixture is crumbly and the margarine/shortening are in tiny pieces.
Fold in the diced apples, stirring to coat with the flour.
Add in the soymilk-cornstarch mixture, maple syrup, extracts, and vinegar. Stir until just combined, being careful to not overmix.
Turn dough out onto a floured work surface. Form dough into 2 separate rounds, about 2 inches tall and 6 inches across. Slice each round into 6 wedges. Place wedges onto prepared sheet pans, allowing for about 1" between scones. Using a pastry brush, brush tops of scones with oil or margarine. Place in the oven and bake for 30 minutes, checking halfway through to ensure they are rising properly and not burning, etc.
Remove from oven when tops are golden and scones are firm to the touch. Allow to cool on the baking sheets for 10 minutes, and then transfer to a cooling rack to finish cooling, or serve warm. Store uneaten scones in an airtight container until ready to use.
*If you don't necessarily want to keep these sugar-free, feel free to sprinkle each scone top with some turbinado (or other unrefined) sugar after brushing with oil, before baking.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Summer Projects and Such

So I haven't blogged in a while. A long while! I decided to kinda take the summer off of blogging (I think I posted, like, twice!) and just cook stuff and eat stuff and relax and whatnot. Ha. But now summer has turned into fall and I'm ready to start blogging again! I'm excited to get back into the groove of blogging and updating and taking pictures and all that jazz!

A lot of my cooking over the summer was done for cookbook testing, for Carla (of The Vegan Year blog) for her upcoming One Dish Vegan cookbook, and for Bianca (Vegan Crunk blog) for her Cookin' Crunk cookbook.

Here's some pics!
First, from Cookin' Crunk (I only remembered to take pics of one thing! boo!):
PB Oatmeal Cream Pies
Then, from One Dish Vegan:
Banana Spelt WafflesRaspberry Balsamic Glazed Seitan, Cabbage and Pistachio Rice
Peanut Potato Salad, Mango Orange Tempeh with Ginger

Gringa's Tacu Tacu

Fennel and Rosemary Polenta

Tofu with Olives and Basil

Mojito-Inspired Tofu

Roasted Red Pepper and White Bean Hummus

Lemon Sour Cream Dressing, on greensCorn Slaw
Sweet Chipotle Tempeh with Berry Glaze

Ok, cool! Now I'm all ready to go for the awesomeness of fall food blogging! See you on the flipside!