Posts tagged gingerbread
Gingerbread Loaf Cake

My second Daring Bakers Challenge reveal has arrived. 

This months challenge...Quickbread. 

The Daring Bakers’ February 2012 host was – Lis! Lis stepped in last minute and challenged us to create a quick bread we could call our own. She supplied us with a base recipe and shared some recipes she loves from various websites and encouraged us to build upon them and create new flavour profiles.

You can see the challenge details hereIt was a very versatile challenge in which we had to come up with a recipe for a loaf, muffin or popover (i’d never even heard of that word before!) that didn't use yeast but instead used baking powder/soda as the raising agent. I fancied making a loaf, and as much as I love a good old banana bread (and was very tempted), that is something i’ve made many times before and my veganised banana plantain loaf was even one of the first recipes on my blog.

So, I had another think and a riffle through my folder of scribbles, notes, cutout, printouts of various recipes from all over.  I came across a gingerbread loaf that I had already written a few notes against with ideas for veganising.  I went a little further than this to bump up the healthy factor and used grated pureed carrot to sub most of the oil. The result was amazing, not at all dry but also not at all gummy as i’d sometimes found previously when just using agave nectar as the sweetener. It wasn’t too sweet and was a cross between a cake and a delicate bread with its fine texture.

I baked the ‘mixture in three mini loaf tins so I could vary the toppings. The other reason for this was to reduce the risk of any issue with the loaf browning on the top before being cooked in the middle. Judging by the texture of the loaf I think this may not have been an issue anyway, but I would still suggest using mini loaf tins or alternatively a shallower cake pan if you have them.  

For the tops I kept one loaf plain, decorated the second with chunks of crystalized ginger prior to baking (ok I accept that does have a little refined sugar), and covered the third in a thin sticky layer of chopped up crystalized ginger and agave syrup once baked but whilst the top was still warm.....all three options were delicious!

I served the loaf warm with a dollop of soy youghurt.

Recipe: Gingerbread Loaf

Makes 3 mini loaves (or 1 large)

Ingredients-

  • 1 ½ cups wholemeal spelt flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • ¼ tsp baking powder
  • 1 tbs ground ginger
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • Pinch salt
  • 1 tbs ground flax/chia and 2 tbs hot water
  • 2 tbs molasses
  • ½ cup agave syrup and ¼ tsp stevia
  • 1 tbs freshly grated ginger
  • 1 tsp oil (I used rapeseed)
  • 2 carrots grated/pureed
  • 1 cup soy milk
  • Chopped crystallized ginger for top- optional

Method

Mix together the wet ingredients. Mix together the dry ingredients in a separate bowl and then add to the wet. Mix through lightly and then pour batter into three mini greased/lined loaf tins (approx. 15cm length).

Sprinkle finely chopped crystallised ginger over the top of the loaf if desired.

Bake at 180C for approx. 30 mins. Check with a skewer to see when done.

Note: I used 3 mini loaf tins to eliminate any potential issue of undercooking/gumminess in the centre. In the past when I have used larger loaf tins the centre has not cooked before the top begins to brown.  This cake crumb was very light and so may not present any problem with a larger pan.

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‘Twelve Days’ day 8: Gingerbread parcels

Photo shoot complete before breakfast… so then these became breakfast!

I really wanted to put together a healthy gingerbread recipe. I love gingerbread and typically I would cut out the dough into gingerbread men, but gingerbread men are everywhere at Christmas and as cute as they are I really wanted to do something a little different from the norm this year.

I wanted to combine the idea of gingerbread with something equally as Christmassy…. Enter the Christmas gingerbread parcel, packed full of sweet and spicy mincemeat!

Mmmm, a crisp and chewy gingerbread cookie shell with a soft and juicy fruity centre. These are so moreish, rich and filling but not so sickly sweet. Using homemade mincemeat makes such a difference, as I mentioned yesterday in this post, I never used to like mincemeat at all….please give it a try!

I’d originally tried to create a gluten free gingerbread dough which tasted great (in dough form) but rolling it out presented an issue as the dough was quite crumbly. I think it would have been fine for a flat cookie, but these really needed the extra elasticity to allow them to be folded up into the individual parcels. So, I opted for the tried and tested spelt version as I am still quite a novice when it comes to GF baking. I’d be interested to know of any tips or comments other may have!

Of course this dough could be used for traditional gingerbread men if you prefer!

Recipe: Gingerbread parcels

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ cups mix of whole and white spelt flour
  • ½ cup arrowroot
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1tbs ground ginger
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tsp nutmeg
  • 3tbs coconut oil- melted
  • 1 tsp flax and 2 tbs hot water mixed
  • 1/3 cup agave nectar plus ¼ tsp stevia
  • 2 tbs molasses
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • Half a jar of mincemeat- bought or (ideally) homemade

Method

Preheat oven to 180C. In a large bowl mix together dry ingredients. Mix the wet ingredients in a separate bowl.  Slowly mix the dry ingredients into the wet until you get a stiff dough. I didn’t feel that the dough needed time to chill, but feel free to chill for a short while if you feel it will make it more workable, particularly if a little sticky.

Roll out the dough using lightly floured parchment paper. Roll out to approx. 5mm thick and cut into squares approx. 8cm wide. Spoon a teaspoon of mincemeat mixture into the centre of each square and pinch the corners together sealing them at the top  to form a parcel (it’s simpler than it sounds!)

Bake for approx. 8-10 mins until they begin to colour at the edges. Cool completely and decorate with a dusting of icing sugar if desired.


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‘Twelve Days’ day 2: Christmas in a gingerbread cube!

On the 1st of December it was my brother’s birthday and to celebrate I decided to surprise him with a little package in the post- mini ‘smoosh’ bar cubes. A delicious seasonal selection of chocolate-orange cubes taken from this original recipealong with a new gingerbread version just in time for the Christmas period. 

I wanted to share the gingerbread recipe with you to kick your mid-morning elevenses up a notch! These cubes are pretty spicy and warming so feel free to cut back on the ground ginger if you prefer a slightly more subtle flavour. I have also included cacoa nibs to give a subtle chocolate hint but this is optional and the cubes are just a good without.  Oh... and one other thing, make some choc-orange cubes too and put one of each in your mouth at the same time....

....Mmmm...Christmas in a cube!

These cubes would also be great served in a little snack bowl with some raisins, nuts and dark chocolate buttons… addictive… but remember its ok because they are good for you! Remember they are raw and GF too.

Recipe: Ginger spiced cubes

Makes quite a lot of mini cubes (or about 10 small bars)

Ingredients

  • 120g dates
  • 25g almonds
  • 35g cashews
  • 20g raisins
  • 40g ground oats
  • 30g buckwheat flour
  • 10g chia seeds
  • 1tbs sliced fresh ginger
  • 1tbs ground ginger
  • ½ tsp mixed spice
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • 20g cacoa nibs or coarsely ground dark chocolate chunks- optional

Method

Very simply- add everything to your food processor and whirl until you have a fine sticky meal. To form into bars/cubes I pressed the mixture into a small tin lined with baking parchment and use the flat end of a rolling pin to firmly pack the mixture down. Chill the ‘slab’ for a while before lifting out of the tin and cutting into pieces (I cut some cubes for my borther and some bars for me). Store them in the fridge or cupboard. They will easily last for a couple of weeks maybe longer although the intensity of the flavour may deteriorate.


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