Friday, June 10, 2011

Adventures in Baking

Hola muchachas. I hope that was appropriate.  I don't speak Spanish.

I baked you some bread yesterday, but I'm kind of afraid to share it because...well it's not that good.  I mean it's not bad.  I like it.  I just think you might be a little disappointed.  Give it a try though.

Basically I tried to healthify a recipe from Joy the Baker for zucchini-sweet potato bread.  If you have no visited Joy the Baker's blog, I HIGHLY recommend it.  That girl is hilarious, and the recipes look all types of delicious.  Next on my personal docket of things to try is the cinnamon sugar pull-apart bread and the honey beer spice cake.

My kitchen.  With that awesome Anthro towel.

But this time I made zucchini-sweet potato bread.  Here is the original recipe from Joy's blog:

2 cups all-purpose flour (she used 1 cup all-purpose and 1 cup whole wheat flour)
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon cloves (the nutmeg and the cloves are optional)
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 cups sugar (she used 1 cup granulated sugar and 1 cup brown sugar)
3/4 cup vegetable oil (she used 1/2 cup oil and 1/4 cup apple sauce.  Less fat.)
3 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cup grated zucchini
1 1/2 cup peeled and grated sweet potato
1 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 cup dried cranberries (optional)
And this is how I changed it:
2 c flour (1 c all-purpose and 1 c whole wheat)
2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp allspice
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 c sugar
about 1/2 c - 1 T flax meal
3 eggs
1/2 c applesauce
1/4 c honey
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 heaping c grated zucchini
1 c grated sweet potato
about 1/3 c grated carrots
about 1/3 c finely chiffonaded (sliced in ribbons) baby spinach (seriously)
1/2 c dried cranberries
Same baking instructions applied:  mix dry ingredients; beat wet ingredients, then add veggies; combine the two and fold in cranberries.  Then bake in a buttered, floured bread pan at 350 for about and hour or until toothpick comes out clean (Joy said an hour and 20 minutes).
Looks good, right?

My bread isn't actually bad.  It's a little nutty and dense, which I like, but not a whole lot of distinctive flavor, I think because I cut back so drastically on the sugar.  All in all not a bad breakfast bread, and it clocks in at about 150-170 calories per slice if you get 12 slices out of the loaf.  Here's a summary of the changes I made, and what worked and what didn't:
  1. Swapping the oil for flax meal (more protein, less calories) and applesauce (less fat).  I would do this again.  As a vegetarian (did I mention I'm a vegetarian?) I need all the protein I can get, and flax meal is full of really healthy omega-3's.  Applesauce adds more fruit to the bread, and I am constantly trying to cram fruits and veggies into my diet.  The flax also contributes to that denseness I like while still keeping the bread moist.  I read the rule is a 3:1 ratio when swapping flax meal for oil, but I did a little less because I was also subbing some applesauce.
  2. Cutting waaayyy back on sugar and using some honey.  I think I would up my sugar next time I make this bread; I reduced it my more than half.  Maybe just another 1/4 cup of sugar.  I'd keep the honey though, I love honey and I'm sure it helped keep the bread moist.
  3. Changing the veggie amounts and adding spinach.  I guess I went into this wanting to shove more vegetables in the bread, but I don't think I actually added much more than the original 3 cups in Joy's recipe.  In the future I would keep the zucchini and 1 1/2 cups and maintain at least 1 1/2 cups of a sweet potato/carrot combo.  I'd keep a little bit of spinach - you can't even taste it and it's healthy...ish.  It might be a negligible amount for nutrition, but I feel better eating the bread.  Bottom line: still lots and lots 'o veggies.  
  4. Subbing allspice for cloves.  This was done out of convenience because I don't have cloves.  No matter.
  5. Not including walnuts.  This was optional anyway and I didn't have walnuts on hand, plus I figured I already had some nutty flavor and healthy fats with the flax.
Yeah that green thing is spinach.  I went there.

Soooo.  That's what's up.  I still don't know why I messed with the veggie measurements so much when I should have just added stuff on top of the original recipe.  Oh well.  That's why it's called an experiment (or rather, I am now calling this an experiment).  Next up I'll try some baller cinnamon bread!

No comments:

Post a Comment