Almond, Lemon and Thyme Bread with Fig and Lemon Jam
January 29, 2012
Quick breads many times are full of oil or butter, sugar and white flour. I’m attracted to the “idea” of these breads but then get turned off by the ingredients. Not that I don’t use white sugar and white flour when making my Italian cookies as I like to keep to the traditional recipe. But during the rest of the year, I prefer to enjoy all I eat while knowing that I’ve tweaked it to be healthier for me…and that means enjoying what I eat without any guilt!!
I do see more recipes around switching out the butter or oil for applesauce or yogurt, white sugar to raw sugar or agave and white flour to wheat or a blend of flours. While I don’t have a gluten intolerance, I do try to lessen the gluten I consume. This bread could be completely gluten free by replacing the 3 tablespoons of white/wheat flour with gluten free flour. I personally just don’t like the smell of gluten free flour!
This bread can be served for breakfast, tea, as a side with dinner or a light dessert. I prepared a jam of sorts as I don’t can I make just enough to last me for a week. Figs and lemons simmered with orange blossom honey, cardamon and cloves provided just enough sweetness and taste to compliment this bread.
Almond, Lemon and Thyme Bread
3/4 cup plain yogurt
3/4 cup raw sugar (turbinado)
Zest of one organic lemon
3 large eggs, room temperature
1 cup stone ground yellow cornmeal
1/4 cup almond flour
3 tablespoons white/wheat flour (replace with gluten free flour for a gluten free bread)
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Spray a 9×5 inch loaf pan. Combine the cornmeal, flours, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl. Set aside. In a large bowl of an electric mixer, blend the yogurt and sugar until well combined. Add the lemon zest and eggs, one at a time, mixing well. Add in the flour mixture, blend to combine and stir in the almonds until just combined. Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake for about 50-55 minutes or until lightly golden and toothpick tested clean. Let cool completely on wire rack.
Fig and Lemon Jam
3 small lemons
8 dried figs, chopped small
1/4 cup raw sugar
1/4 teaspoon cardamon
1/4 teaspoon cloves
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon orange blossom honey
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon citrus sea salt or Kosher salt
Prepare the lemons by slices off both ends to allow the lemon to stand flat. Using a paring knife, cut the peel and pith off by following the curve of the lemons. Cut the lemon segments out and chop into small pieces. Place lemon segments and any juices into a small saucepan. Add in the remaining ingredients and allow to simmer gently for about 30 minutes or until thickened. Allow to cool, refrigerate for up to 5 days.
I love being in the kitchen. Early mornings, soft music, a hot espresso. Easing into the preparation of delicious meals. Glancing through cookbooks, gathering inspiration and planning my day. I look forward to the cycles of the seasons, the pleasures of tasting and savoring and sharing this with those dear to me. Weekends are special to me as my week days are often rushed, but still I create the ambiance, light the candles, set the table and uncork the wine.