Pure Maple Sugar Candies

I found these delicious maple candies at my local Fred Meyer last December.

I was impressed that they are made from pure maple syrup. Maple Grove Farms also has other candies with blends of maple syrup and cane sugar, so choose carefully.

Of course this company also sells maple syrup, although not at the great prices of Amazon.com or Trader Joes.

To find a retailer in your area, you can check this page on the Maple Grove website.

Baking Sucess: Date Nut Bread

Mmm . . . my family’s traditional holiday bread, in a gluten free, cane sugar free version. It’s just as yummy as the original.

Date Nut Bread

1 and 1/2 cups dates (pieces rolled in oat flour)
2 and 1/4 cups boiling water
1 TBS soda
Cover dates and soda with boiling water; set 30 minutes.

1 and 1/2 cups tapioca flour
1 and 1/2 cups brown rice flour
1 and 1/2 cups sorgum flour
1 TBS xanthan gum
Whisk flours and xanthan together with a wire whisk.

3/4 cup honey
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup xylitol (if you don’t have xylitol, you can substitute another 1/4 cup maple syrup)
3 TBS butter
2 pastured eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp fine sea salt
Cream sweeteners, butter, eggs, vanilla and salt. Add part of date mixture, then alternate between flour and date mixture until it is all incorporated.

Then add:
1 cup chopped walnuts, preferably soaked and dried

Pour into well greased loaf pans. Bake at 300 degrees. For smaller pans (mini) bake about 1 hour, and larger (normal loaf size) pans about 1 hour 20 minutes. After removing pans from oven, allow to set about 5 minutes before turning onto a baking rack to cool. When cool, wrap in food wrap, and store in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks. It is delicious served with either cream cheese or butter.

This batch was my remake. Want to read about my first batch, and see what happens if you bake the larger pans for only an hour? See Baking Failure: Holiday Bread. It’s not pretty. 🙂

Sweet Treats: Unrefined Sweeteners

It’s holiday time again, and if you’re like me, you’re thinking about making some sweet treats for family and friends.

Surprisingly, there are a bunch of great recipes which can be successfully made (and enjoyed!) with honey and maple syrup (and other whole food options) as the sweeteners, rather than white sugar. I have several which are my favorites . . . I’ll have to share them in time. For now, I’m excited to tell you about a blog my friend Krista writes: http://thenourishingapron.blogspot.com/ .

Every recipe on her blog is made without cane sugar, and she does a beautiful job of presenting her methods, always with a picture to get your mouth watering!

I just made her Protein Bars yesterday. They were super easy, no bake, and gluten free. Were they good? Well, they’re GONE! (Answer: Yes.)

Happy treat making!