Monday, November 22, 2010

Vegetarian Holiday Baking: Almond Bread

Here's a scrumptious dish that will satisfy any palette this Thanksgiving.

buttermilk (4 Tbl milk alternative + 1 Tbl vinegar)
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp almond extract
2 c. whole wheat flour
4 tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp salt
1 c. almond butter 
2 bananas
1 c unsweetened applesauce
1 c powdered sugar
1/2 c vegetable shortening
1/2 c honey
1 c diced almonds

Preparation:  In small mixing bowl or glass, combine milk alternative and vinegar.  Let sit for at least 5 minutes (components in milk will appear to separate; it will still bake up right).  Next, combine flour, baking powder and salt in large mixing bowl.  In a separate bowl, combine almond butter vegetable shortening, honey, powdered sugar, applesauce, and bananas and beat until blended with an electric mixer. Add baking soda to buttermilk.  Add buttermilk/soda mixture and almond extract to wet ingredients.  Stir in 2/3 c. diced almonds.  Fold dry ingredients into wet mixture.    Pour dough into 9" loaf pan and sprinkle remaining 1/3 c. diced almonds on the top.  Bake at 350 degrees for an hour and 10 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.

I'm telling you, the smell of almond extract is one of my absolute favorite things.  It's sweet aroma fills up your home and it's one of those wonderful little ingredients that just makes friends and family say, "Ummmmm…  What's in this?"  Great words to hear when they're accompanied by a smiling mouthful.

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