Since embarking on La Vida Locarb, what most people know as bread has been off the table for me and it is one of the foods I miss the most. Mind you, I’m not talking about the pillowy concoctions that pass for bread in the supermarket aisles, but my own homemade bread made from whole grains freshly ground minutes before being transformed into dough. Sigh. That was my daily bread in every sense. It wasn’t only the eating of the bread that satisfied, but the enjoyment of the process of engineering the transformation from wheat berries to sticky mess in the mixer bowl to springy dough to fragrant loaf.
Now I have Almond Bread. It is tasty and satisfying and does make a good stand-in for the old yeasted wheat breads in my diet. As for the transformation, it’s not so much the actual baking of the bread that satisfies since it’s easy and not much can go wrong there, but it’s the preparation of the ingredients that has taken the place of the complex process required to produce a good loaf of yeast-raised whole wheat bread. Making this bread has lead me to the making of one of the primary and costliest ingredients: Fromage Blanc, and that transformation from milk to cheese is very similar to the one from flour to loaf. However, you do not need to go so far. The recipe for making the bread is really quite simple once you procure the ingredients:
- 17 oz. finely ground almonds or purchased almond meal
- 14 oz. Fromage Blanc or Dry-Curd Cottage cheese, or if you must, ricotta cheese.
- 3.5 oz. olive oil
- 2 tsp. baking soda
- 1/2 tsp. Celtic Sea Salt
- 2 Tablespoons Hulled Hemp Seed
- 2 teaspoons ground flaxseed
- 6 eggs
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees
- Grease 2 ceramic loaf pans WELL. I use a release agent I make myself of canola oil and lecithin, but Pam will work if you are generous enough with it.
- Combine all ingredients in mixer bowl and beat at medium speed for 2 minutes
- Divide batter evenly between the 2 loaf pans
- Bake in 350 degree oven for 50-60 minutes, all ovens are different and you don’t want to under (gooey) or over bake (too dry) this bread although it’s best to err on the side of doneness. Some experimentation will be required until you settle on the optimum time. For me, it’s 50 minutes.
- Allow to cool for 10 minutes and then loosen loaf with a knife around the edges of the pan.
- Remove the bread from the pans and allow to cool completely before wrapping in waxed paper and storing in plastic bags in either the refrigerator or freezer. To thaw, place in refrigerator overnight.
- To serve, slice thin and reheat in the microwave or conventional oven, or like me, devour in cold slices directly from the fridge. Butter optional.
Be aware that while this bread is a low carb food (around 3-4 per slice, I think) it is NOT a low calorie food. It is dense and nutritious, packed with protein and fiber and yes, calories, I have no idea how many. Also be aware that since it contains no sweetener, it isn’t sweet in spite of its uncanny resemblance to the oh-so-sweet Banana Bread in texture and visual appearance. That first bite is a surprise!