Christmas and cranberries. The two go together like Beatles and Sunday. Brad and Angie... er, whoops. Um. Oh well.
So I was imagining a tea bread that might work for gluten-free French toast. The sort of breakfast you'd like to wake up to on Christmas morning. Something warm with melting butter and cozy cinnamon. Something festive. Special. Not your average grab-on-the-go with coffee nosh. A gluten-free bread worthy of a holiday.
That's how it all started.
When it dawned me. Cranberry bread. Why not? It's simple. And not too sweet. It flirts magically with maple syrup. So I started daydreaming about the tart little berry that is a bog's ruby jewel.
And a gluten-free cranberry bread recipe was born.
Karina's Gluten-Free Cranberry Bread Recipe
Recipe posted December 2010 by Karina Allrich.
You can make this tender gluten-free cranberry bread with or without nuts, and with or without eggs. It's flexible. I like that in a recipe. Don't you?
Preheat your oven to 350º F. Line a 9-inch loaf pan with a piece of parchment paper. I cut the paper so it rises up the longer sides of the pan. This makes it super easy to grip and remove the whole loaf for complete cooling.
1 cup sorghum flour or brown rice flour
1 cup tapioca starch or potato starch (not potato flour)
1/2 cup almond flour or millet flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon xanthan gum
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1 cup brown sugar, packed
1 cup applesauce or plain yogurt
1/3 cup light olive oil or vegetable oil
1 free-range organic egg white, or egg replacer (1/8 cup liquid)
2 teaspoons bourbon vanilla
1 cup of fresh or frozen cranberries (thawed), chopped
1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans
In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the sorghum flour, tapioca starch, almond flour, baking powder, baking soda, xanthan gum, sea salt, cinnamon and nutmeg. Add in the brown sugar.
Add the applesauce (or yogurt), oil, egg white or egg replacer, and vanilla. Beat to combine and continue to beat on medium high until the batter is smooth- about a minute or two.
Add in the chopped cranberries and nuts, and stir by hand to distribute evenly.
Scrape and spoon the batter into the prepared loaf pan and using a small silicone spatula, even out the top of the loaf.
Bake in the center of a preheated oven until the top is golden and firm, yet feels slightly springy. This may take anywhere from 55 to 60 minutes. It took 60 minutes for my cranberry bread to bake- I think it was because the cranberries were still quite cold. Test with a thin sharp knife or a wooden pick- either should emerge with no crumbs or stickiness.
Note on the pan: I use a ceramic loaf pan- if you are using a metal bread pan, you may need to adjust baking time- check sooner for doneness. Dark metal pans bake gluten-free breads faster on the outside.
Place the pan on a wire rack to cool a bit. When the loaf has cooled enough to handle (and not too fragile) loosen both ends from the pan with a thin knife and using the long sides of the parchment paper, grip and lift the loaf up out of the pan and set it on the wire rack to continue cooling. This keeps it from steaming in the hot pan and getting soggy.
This cranberry tea bread is delicious slightly warm with a dab of vegan butter- but I also like it cool. The texture improves with cooling, I think.
As always, I wrapped leftover slices in foil, bagged and froze them for future breakfast treats. I bet this bread would fabulous lightly grilled in a little vegan butter.
Makes 8 to 10 slices.
Recipe Source: glutenfreegoddess.blogspot.com
Karina's Recipe Notes:
If you are using frozen berries, their chill will cool the batter down, so the bread may take longer to bake through.
As mentioned, I think this bread would be fabulous as French toast. I'd soak the slices in the egg mixture only briefly.
If you don't care for cranberries, try blueberries.
One lovely reader reports she made this recipe as muffins- and they rose beautifully.
For substitutions, please see my guide to baking with substitutions here.