Almond Pumpkin Bread or Apple Sultana Spice Bread – same formula, different variations
Do you ever wish you had a few simple recipe formulas that you could learn, so that everyday meals and baking are so easy you hardly have to think about them? Basic formulas that can be changed around to use whatever ingredients you have on hand?
This is how I mostly cook. I have a basic formula in my head for a meal (or bread, smoothie, etc), then I ‘tweak’ it to make it a bit different every time. It really simplifies your cooking – and as you may know, ‘Simplify‘ is my word for the year!
A couple of weeks ago I was a speaker at The Wellness Breakthrough, and I taught a workshop called “Simplify Your Cooking”. I divided everyone into 5 groups and gave them each a basic formula for a simple recipe, with lots of possible variations: a one pot meal, a smoothie, a salad and dressing, a grain free bread, and chocolate. Each group had a tray of ingredients and either a Thermomix or a burner with a pot, cutting boards, etc. And they had 30 mins to make their recipe. The results were great, and it was awesome to see everyone thinking up different variations of the recipes! (And we had a lot of fun!!)
Photo credit: Total Capture Photography
Photo credit: Total Capture Photography
So in my newsletters I’ve been sharing some of these ‘Recipe Formulas‘, with lots of tips for ways to change them around. And since this Grain Free Bread recipe is very popular and I get asked about it a lot, I thought I’d better share it on the blog as well.
(If you have a suggestion for a recipe formula you’d like help with, just comment on this blog post, and then keep an eye on my newsletters, and you might see your suggestion pop up!)
So here it is – a recipe formula for making all sort of grain free breads, both sweet and savoury, muffins, loaves, fritters, fruit or veggies, nuts or seeds, with or without dairy, paleo, gaps, fodmaps… The possibilities of variations are endless! Have fun!!
Almond Pumpkin Bread Muffins; Toast; Pumpkin Fritters; and Apple Sultana Spice toast
- 230g activated nuts or seeds (or a mixture)
- 150g raw veg or apple, peeled and cubed (see notes)
- 3 eggs, separated
- ½ tsp sea salt
- spices/herbs (optional)
- 60g fat/oil, plus extra to grease loaf tin (see notes)
- optional additions (seeds, dried fruit, etc)
- Preheat oven to 170C. Grease loaf tin with fat of choice and set aside.
- Mill nuts or seeds 10 sec/speed 8. Remove to a bowl and set aside. Clean and dry bowl.
- Place egg whites into bowl and insert butterfly. Whisk 3 mins/speed 4. Remove to a bowl and set aside. Remove butterfly.
- Return almond/seed meal to bowl, add cubed veg/fruit, egg yolks, salt, spices/herbs if using, and fat/oil. Mix 10 sec/speed 5.
- Scrape down sides of bowl with spatula. Mix another 5 sec/speed 5.
- Add 1/3 of the egg whites and mix 30 sec/speed 5. Turn batter out into a large bowl, and gently (but thoroughly) fold through remaining egg whites, and any additions to batter you'd like.
- Place batter into greased loaf tin and cook in preheated oven, 40-50 mins at 170C, or until skewer inserted in centre comes out clean. Or cook in greased muffin tins, 20 mins at 170C.
- Mill almonds/seeds in a food processor until finely ground, or use bought nut/seed meal.
- Add veg/apple, egg yolks, salt, spices/herbs (if using) and fat/oil and chop and mix until veg/apple is finely ground and mixture is like a thick batter.
- Whip egg whites in a clean bowl with an electric mixer.
- Add 1/3 of the whipped egg whites to the food processor bowl and mix until combined. Turn batter out into a large bowl, and gently (but thoroughly) fold through remaining egg whites, and any additions to batter you'd like.
- Cook as above.
- Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week, or wrap well and freeze for up to 4 months. Don't leave out at room temp or bread may go mouldy within a couple of days.
- Nuts & seeds: Use almonds, macadamias, cashews, pecans, or a mixture; or pepitas or sunflower seeds (or a mixture) for nut-free. Activated means soaked and dehydrated, to make the nuts/seeds easier to digest. If you want to use raw, increase weight to 250g. (Activated nuts/seeds are lighter.)
- Raw veg or fruit: Use raw pumpkin, sweet potato, zucchini or cauliflower for a veggie bread; or raw apple for a sweet bread. Butternut pumpkin is also great with spices and sultanas for a sweet bread.
- Fat/oil: Use ghee, butter, coconut oil, duck fat, lard, macadamia oil or avocado oil.
- Apple Sultana Spice Bread: add spices (2 tsp cinnamon, 1/2 tsp nutmeg, 1/4 tsp cloves) and a cup of sultanas, using apple, sweet potato or pumpkin for the fruit/veg. (Stir sultanas in after blending.)
- Savoury Breads: add 1 tsp mixed herbs, and fillings like olives, sun-dried tomatoes, cheese or chives for a savoury bread/muffin. (Stir in after blending.)
- Seed Bread: add 50g activated (or 60g raw) seeds at the end (stir in after blending) if you'd like a bit more texture.
- Veggie fritters: make batter with pumpkin or zucchini, then stir through cooked/leftover chopped veggies, and some cooked bacon or leftover meat if desired. Fry spoonfuls in frying pan in some ghee or macadamia oil, over med-low heat.
- Egg free: I haven't tried an egg free version yet, but you could probably use "chia eggs" (3 Tbspns milled chia seeds mixed with 6 Tbspns water) plus 1 tsp baking powder. Or try your favourite egg replacer, but remember that egg whites help this bread to rise, so any egg replacers will result in a heavier bread.