Date almond loaf and Erythritol
Erythritol kinda sounds like a science experiment doesn't it? It's not though, it's a natural, almost zero calorie sweetener that isn't produced using chemicals (they ferment the sugar with yeast!). Here's more about it not in my words:
Erythritol is a natural sugar alcohol which has been approved for use in the United States and throughout much of the world. It occurs naturally in fruits and fermented foods. At the industrial level, it is produced from glucose by fermentation with a yeast, Moniliella pollinis. It is 60–70% as sweet as table sugar yet it is almost non-caloric, does not affect blood sugar, does not cause tooth decay, and is absorbed by the body, therefore unlikely to cause gastric side effects unlike other sugar alcohols. Under U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) labeling requirements, it has a caloric value of 0.2 kilocalories per gram (95% less than sugar and other carbohydrates). Source
I was very excited when Emerald Forest asked if I wanted to give this product a try. I know my current "fake" sweetener is eyeballed unapprovingly by a lot of people, so this was a great thing to try. The first recipe I tried was my go to whole wheat chocolate chip cookie recipe that I've been experimenting with. They came out just as delicious but a little less sweet (makes sense since it is less sweet than table sugar). So if you are going to use this to totally replace your sugar you will want to use more. For me most recipes have too much sweet, so using this and not upping the amount would work out perfectly.
The next thing I made was a date and almond loaf I was inspired to make on What Would Cathy Eat? She used walnuts, but in all truth I'm not a huge walnut fan, so I went with almonds, YUM!
I did a half batch and came up with two mini loaves. And they came out amazing! The perfect amount of sweet and a great texture. Like the birch sugar I experimented with recently, this stuff has a similar texture to sugar, it's not airy light. Also good to know, it doesn't have a weird aftertaste.
Whole Grain Date Walnut Bread
adapted by me from What Would Cathy Eat?
1/2 cup chopped dates
1/2 cup boiling water
1 egg white
1.5 tablespoons organic canola oil
1/3 cup Erythritol (she would have used 1/4 cup sugar in the raw)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
3/4 cups whole wheat flour (she used ww pastry flour, I didn't have any)
1/4 cup oats (she used oat flour)
1 tablespoons ground flax
1 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup slivered almonds (she used walnuts)
Preheat the oven to 350. Combine the dates and boiling water in a small bowl and let stand for 15 minutes.
In a medium bowl, vigorously whisk together the egg, oil, sugar and vanilla.
Combine the flours, flax, baking powder, soda, salt and cinnamon in a large bowl. Stir in the dates with their liquid, along with the egg mixture and stir just to combine. Fold in the walnuts.
Pour into two lightly oiled mini loaf pans and bake for 30-35 minutes, until a toothpick or knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Let cool thoroughly before slicing.
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