One of the best things about living in Canada in the fall, other than the fabulous hauls from the farmers market, is that other reason why we appreciate the almighty maple tree.
The nectar of nature, maple syrup is truly a spring gift, however delicious, a simple autumn walk can be just as spectacular. The colourful displays the scarlet and rusted orange maple leaves screaming their last vibrant shrieks before plunging to their deaths is always enough to get my heart racing back to life.
When I recently took part in a detox diet, I realized my longing of food. No, I didn’t crave fatty snack food or sugar, per se, it was the bread. Neglected of fruit, sugars and wheat among (many) other things, it was the bread I craved.
Always a creative person, by mid-diet, I was determined to solve my dilemma.
Only restricted by wheat, gluten and yeast, I set out to find any alternative.
Scanning the aisles of the health food store, I found various root and bean flours which met my specific diet requirements. Knowing that some of these new flours would lend an undesired new flavour twist to my creation, I found the most mild; brown rice, cranberry bean, arrowroot and soy flours then set off to work.
Next having to go sugar-free, I knew I wouldn’t get the sticky, sweetness of that super Dutch snack, but it didn’t matter. I wasn’t looking for cake, I wanted my bread back. Something to clean my plates and dip in my soup. Something just to finally eat and feel satisfied again. The maple syrup was perfect in this regard. Not the same sweetness as sugar and just a hint of smokiness – perfect.
What I ended up with made me feel like I was cheating, isn’t that terrible? Great on it’s own and with the Roasted Vegetable Soup, I finally I felt like this diet was really working for me. I had my bread, I felt whole again.
MAPLE PUMPKIN QUICK BREAD
1 1/4 Cups Soy Flour, may be substituted with unbleached flour
1/2 Cup Cranberry Bean Flour, may be substituted with whole wheat flour
1/4 Cup Arrowroot Flour, may be substituted with whole wheat flour
2 teaspoons Baking Powder, gluten-free
1 teaspoon Baking Soda
1 1/2 Cups Pumpkin Purée
1/3 Cup Molasses
1/2 Cup Maple Syrup
1 Cup Soy Milk
1 1/2 teaspoons Cinnamon, ground
1 teaspoon Ginger, ground
1/2 teaspoon Freshly Grated Nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon Salt
Cooking Spray or oil for greasing
Preheat the oven to 300ºF.
Sift the flours, baking powder and baking soda into a large bowl.
Combine the pumpkin purée, molasses, maple syrup, milk, spices and salt in a large, 1 litre measuring cup.
Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and stir to moisten, do not over mix.
Once all the flour has been absorbed, lightly spray a loaf pan with cooking spray and levelly pour in the dough.
Bake for 55 – 60 minutes or until a cake tester can cleanly be removed.
Allow the bread to cool in the pan completely, if you can resist the aroma.
Bake this and other doughy delights and celebrate World Bread Day 2007.