It seems that I always end up writing posts later at night…at least if there is nothing on TV, you have something to read.
With Thanksgiving just around the corner, I’m prepping to fix some dishes that are Paleo, since my husband’s family has a “Cuban” Thanksgiving. Their Thanksgiving meal, which I do love, consists of either a Cuban-style turkey or a pork leg, white rice, black beans, yuca (a root vegetable), and avocado with olive oil and vinegar. To the Paleo people, all you can eat is the meat and the avocado. Well, the yuca too, but I have tried a little bit every year and every year I remember why I don’t like it. It’s a food you either LOVE or HATE (though that’s a strong word), and I am in the latter category. Not much to fill up on any way you slice it.
SIDE NOTE: Now, don’t get me wrong – I can eat some gluten and I don’t have any immune-mediated or health issues that are the reason why I eat the way I eat. Cow’s milk and some cow’s cheese give me headaches and make me congested, so I have stopped drinking/eating it, but eggs and goat’s and sheep’s milk cheese are just fine! I love to have my Go Lean cereal some mornings (weird, I know), but pasta and rice give me stomach aches and headaches so I stay away. Overall, I am mostly Paleo with a few splurges here and there, but I find the challenge of making gluten- and grain-free foods taste just like their gluten- and grain-laden counterparts exciting!
All right, back on track…
As the white girl, or gringa, in the family, I have definitely incorporated some of my family’s holiday meal traditions into their feast, such as stuffing/dressing, cranberry sauce, and pumpkin pie – all homemade of course. I particularly love my family’s stuffing recipe (called stuffing because we usually stuff our turkey, but in this case, it should be called dressing since it is being made separately). Sadly, stuffing requires bread cubes and that means that it’s full of gluten and grain. Thank goodness Danielle Walker of Against All Grain created the recipe, Grain-free Sandwich Bread. This is what I will be baking tonight, so I can use it as a base for my stuffing.
In the stress of getting it baked tonight, and my husband bugging me in the kitchen, asking questions about what I was doing, how long I was going to be using the LOUD mixer (AKA interrupting important shows on TV), and to not let his chocolate chip cookies burn, I forgot to take a lot of pictures….but you’ll get to see a whole other side of the cooking/baking process….the dirty dishes!
This recipe is fairly straightforward, and while you do have to use a decent amount of dishes, it’s not fairly complicated. I made my own cashew butter with the raw cashews I had on hand. I just blended the heck out of them using my Vitamix. I then mixed the cashew butter, egg yolks, vinegar, honey, and coconut milk using the whisk attachment and my Kitchenaid mixer (what a life-saver). Sadly, I don’t have a second bowl or whisk attachment (though I made it known tonight that it would be so great if I could get a second set…Christmas gift maybe???), so I had to put this mix into a bowl, clean it, and whisk my egg whites. I whisked them until they were forming stiff peaks and then I had to put those in a separate bowl. You can imagine the dirty dishes piling up. Finally, I measured out the dry ingredients in a third bowl.
As the recipe clearly states, you must have your oven preheated to 300 degrees Fahrenheit with a dish of water inside, your loaf pan oiled (using coconut oil) with a piece of parchment on the bottom, and your ingredients on hand. Once certain ingredients combine, the rising process begins so you don’t want to be fussing around and losing all that precious air that is being created.
I put the cashew butter mix back in my mixer, added the dry ingredients and whisked them together. Then I added the egg whites, mixing until everything was incorporated. Before placing the mix into the loaf pan, I scraped the whole bowl, incorporating anything that may have gotten stuck at the bottom. Clumps won’t work in this bread recipe. Once smooth, I put the mixture into the pan and quickly got it into the oven.
Also clearly stated is NOT to open the oven before 40 minutes is up, so I didn’t open the oven door until the bread was done.
A picture through the glass on the oven door…
I had a little nibble and it tastes a little like a brioche…YUM! I will definitely be making this recipe many more times as I love to have toast with my eggs at breakfast. Next time, and the thought floated briefly through my mind tonight, I will make a double batch so I can get a larger, taller loaf, but this will work for my purposes for now. I will update with my Thanksgiving menu items and let you all know how this bread works in my stuffing. Until then, enjoy your bread, Paleo-style!!!