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Like all of you, I'm a number of things to a number of people...Navy wife, homeschooling mama, educated woman and aspiring writer. Read my thoughts on all of it here. Please feel free to leave your thoughts on all of it too!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Primal Bread Substitutes

Bread.  In the past I've been known to eat it as part of a sandwich, dip it in soup, smother it with butters, jams, anything!  I have been a lover of bread.  But, honestly, I haven't thought about it much now that I'm primal.  It must be true that once I broke that addiction to carbs and gluten, I no longer had cravings for them.  Cool, huh?

However, I'm the only one in the family who doesn't eat bread anymore.  Tyler has "toast jelly" every morning.  Gracie is working on getting on the primal wagon, but still eats toast probably three times a week.  Jace is doing really well, in part because he loves primal cereal with almond milk, and only has toast once or twice a month.  Scott doesn't eat bread during the week, unless he goes to Subway.  He's not committed enough to order a salad there.  When he goes to the galley for lunch, though, he forgoes the hamburger bun and has just the meat and cheese.  And, of course, everyone loves pizza!

So, as a mother/wife who's not willing to deal with the aftermath of simply not buying anymore bread I've turned to sprouted loaves of bread from the store and trying to find homemade substitutes that the kids, at least, will enjoy.  Here's what I've got so far:

Pizza
I've tried two different crusts.  Here are links to them: almond flour crust and cauliflower crust.  And I just came across a third variation that I haven't tried yet, but I will.  I'll share it here so you can take a stab at it if you'd like.  If you do, let me know how it goes! 

Dessert/Snack Breads
Bananas always seem to get gobbled up until there are one or two left.  I've always been certain that it's because everyone loves banana bread!  So now, instead of pulling out my flour, oatmeal, and whatever else went in the old recipe, I open the cupboard and grab my almond meal.  Here are my two favorite recipes:  Carrot Banana MuffinsMoist Banana Bread

Soup and Sandwiches
I just made some really tasty ham bone soup with sweet potatoes, summer squash, carrots and mushrooms this weekend.  Scott doesn't like warm liquids and has made this very clear on several occasions.  However, I do.  Mom used to make left over soup and it is one of my favorite food memories from childhood.  I love kitchen sink soups, you know...where you through in whatever's left over from the week and let it all cook together and maybe, if you're good, you can drink it out of a mug instead of having to use a spoon.  You know that one, right?  Well, if you don't you should get acquainted.  It'll warm you inside and out, and I love it.  So, every so often I make it and Scott gets a little broth and a lot of whatever else is in it.  In the past I've always tried to have a hearty sandwich (who doesn't love dipping) and maybe a salad to round it out.  Now that we're not eating bread I had to find something to replace the sandwich.  I made two somethings to try out.

Spinach Bread

This recipe is directly from Mark Sisson's Primal Blueprint Cookbook

What you need:
3-4 eggs, whisked (for a firmer version, add a few more eggs)
16 ounces of frozen spinach, thawed
2 Tbsp butter
1/2 cup pine nuts
2 cloves crushed garlic
small bunch of basil (about 15 leaves)
1/4 tsp salt (optional)

What you do:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.  Squeeze as much moisture from the spinach as possible, set aside.  Melt butter over low heat and add pine nuts and garlic, toasting until golden brown.  Pine nuts burn easily, so watch closely.  When browned, put into a food processor with basil and pulse a few times until the nuts are broken up but not completely smooth.  Add spinach and salt and pulse for ten seconds.  Stir in the eggs.  Scrape into a buttered pie pan or a 7"x11" baking dish.  Bake 20-30 minutes until set.  Let cool, then cut and enjoy. 

Mark notes that this can be used to make sandwiches is you need something for that purpose.  We tend to just roll our meat, cheese, and veggies up and call it a day.  But this could work too!

Spinach Bread, ready to go in the oven
Onion Crisps

This recipe is from my new cookbook, Grain-Free Gourmet: Delicious Recipes For Healthy Living, by Jodi Bager and Jenny Lass.

What you need:
3 cups almond flour
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup finely chopped parsley
1 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1/4 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
3 eggs
1 cup plain yogurt
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 small onion, finely diced

What you do:
Heat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.  Combine the almond flour, cheese, parsley, oregano, thyme, basil, salt, and baking soda in a bowl.  In a second bowl, combine everything else.  Add the dry ingredients to the wet and mix well. 

Onion Crisps, ready to go into the oven the first time!

Pour the batter into a loaf pan lined with parchment paper and bake for 40-50 minutes.  Cool the loaf completely and refrigerate to make slicing easier. 

Once cool, heat oven to 170 degrees Fahrenheit.  Cut the loaf in half length-wise and slice each half into 1/4 inch thick pieces.  Place on a cookie sheet and bake for two hours, or until they are very hard.  Turn off the heat and let the crackers cool in the oven.  Store in an air tight container to maintain crispness. 

Onion Crisps, ready for their second baking

So, what did we think?  Jace loved the spinach bread.  Scott and I thought it was OK.  If I'm yearning for a sandwich I think I'd make it to use for that purpose, but it didn't dunk well.  And, surprisingly, it tasted like spinach! 

The onion crisps smelled incredible when they were baking and tasted pretty good, too, I thought.  None of the kids liked them, though.  They dissolved in the soup, so weren't so great for that, but tasted good just to eat along side it.  I didn't bake mine long enough at some point, though.  I think I should have left them in their longer the first time, at least.  They were pretty soft going into the second baking.  Even after more than two hours in the oven with the second baking, they never got crisp.  I'm still eating them, though...yum!


salad, spinach bread, and onion crisps

What do you do when you want bread?  Just dig in or look for something a little different?  If you're looking for something new...try these recipes and see how your family likes them.

1 comment:

Athena said...

Thanks for posting these. The spinach bread reminds me a little of spinach cornbread, and makes me wonder if replacing the cornmeal with almond flour would work. There is the Brazilian Cheese Bread which is easy and yummy, it's made with tapioca flour, not sure if that's primal (I'm mostly just avoiding wheat myself).

Thx