Gluten-free Allergen-free Amaranth Soda Bread and Sesame-free, Garlic-free Baba Ganoush recipe


It is ironic that although amaranth is my least favorite of the gluten-free grains or pseudo-grains that I’m eating, I’ve managed to come up with a fair number of recipes using the flour that I actually like. Maybe it is all part of that necessity being the mother of invention thing… however that saying goes. This particular recipe for an allergen-free soda bread is based on one I found floating around the internet without a clear author, but which I’ve modified to suit my tastes. It is crunchy and has a earthy flavor that I find pairs beautifully with a hearty, vegan soup or a creamy, dairy-free dip like my latest riff on baba ghanoush. Unlike most dips, this dip is bean-free, dairy-free, soy-free and even sesame or tahini-free. The fresh cilantro gives it a light, herb note while roasted eggplant gives it body and soul… and homemade sunflower butter stands in for sesame paste. I enjoyed this bread and dip with some luscious kalamata olives and considered myself a pretty lucky gluten-free, allergen-free breastfeeding mama.

Gluten-free Allergen-free Amaranth Soda Bread Recipe
Ingredients
2 tablespoons boiling water
3/4 teaspoon unbuffered vitamin C crystals
4 tablespoons coconut oil or other oil
3/4 cup warm hemp milk (or other dairy-free milk)

2 1/4 cup cups amaranth flour
1/4 cup additional amaranth flour
3/4 cup arrowroot starch
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon caraway seed
2 teaspoons baking soda

kosher salt flakes
herbal blend like Penzey’s Provencal herb mix

Directions
Preheat oven to 400F. Cut a circle of parchment paper to cover the bottom of a round cake tin.

Put your vitamin c in the boiling water. If it doesn’t dissolve, whisk it in.

Combine 2 1/4 cup amaranth flour, arrowroot starch, salt, baking soda and caraway seed in a large bowl. Add your water with vitamin C, hemp or other dairy-free milk and oil, and stir with a big wooden spoon. Sprinkle with the additional 1/4 cup of additional amaranth flour and fold it all together. You can mistreat this dough a bit. Beat it up, fold it up until it seems thoroughly mixed and your arm feels tired. Plop the dough onto your cake pan and shape it into a circle about 1 inch high. You can dampen your hands to shape it or use a cake frosting knife to smooth out the edges. Sprinkle with kosher salt and a nice herbal blend and cut an X in the top, just because it is fun and makes it seem more authentic. Pop in the oven. Lower oven temperature to 325 and bake for 55 minutes or until the center is done to your taste. (I like it pretty done and not doughy in the middle so I put it back in sometimes.)

Cut into triangles and enjoy with some soy free margarine, super yummy lemon olive oil, or baba ganoush.

Notes
Surprisingly addictive.
Garlic-free Vegan Baba Ghanoush Recipe
Ingredients
1 American style eggplant
drizzle olive oil

2 scallion bulbs
2 tbsp sunbutter (I ground roasted unsalted sunflower seeds with a drizzle of lemon olive oil)
Olive oil (basil or other flavored oil is lovely)
1/4 tsp of salt (or more to taste, especially if using homemade unsalted sunbutter)
handful of fresh cilantro
1 fresh lime
1 tsp agave nectar (optional)
fresh ground black pepper

Directions
Cut eggplant in half horizontally and place in baking dish with freshly cut side up. Drizzle with olive oil. Roast on 425 for 20-30 minutes or until flesh is golden brown. Turn over and bake ten more minutes. Then remove from oven and cool.

If making your own sunbutter, grind your seeds and olive oil first in a small food processor or blender. (I have a small powerful food processor that I love for this.) Then scoop out the flesh of your roasted eggplant and add it to the food processor. Add the green onion bulbs to the processor with only a little of the green top if desired. If desired, add a drizzle of your favorite olive oil. I used a Basil Olive oil. Blend until you have a creamy sauce. Then add salt, cilantro, lime, agave and pepper and blend, blend, blend.

Notes
Sunflower seed is no tahini, but did you know sesame is a rising allergen, especially in countries where it is part of the national cuisine? This is also garlic-free.

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9 Responses to “Gluten-free Allergen-free Amaranth Soda Bread and Sesame-free, Garlic-free Baba Ganoush recipe”

  1. This bread looks excellent! I’m curious what the purpose of the unbuffered vitamin C crystals are for though. Obviously they add nutrition, but do they have any baking purpose? I’d never heard of it, I’m intrigued! :)

    ~Aubree Cherie

  2. No yeast or any gums in the bread! (1) I’m impressed and (2) thank you!

    The bread looks like it doesn’t rise too much. Is it a very dense bread?

    Also, interesting point on the sesame seed allergen. I don’t eat them (or tahini) too often, so don’t find I have any problems. I suppose it is like the high number of peanut allergies in the U.S. that you don’t find in other places in the world.

  3. Hi Aubree,
    Thanks! :D Actually, the unbuffered Vitamin C isn’t for nutrition- it is for leavening! It chemically reacts with the baking soda similarly to baking powder. Baking powder is a problem for corn sensitive folks because it often contains corn starch.

    Hi Metta,
    You are welcome! This bread recipe has become a favorite of mine on amaranth days. It is dense- but in a special way, kind of like a less-fluffy corn bread that has been toasted. I think of it as a kind of “hard tack” bread and I find that I enjoy the texture.

    I adore sesame seeds, tahini, etc. but am taking a break from them for baby yum because I ate TONS (craved it) while I was pregnant and soon after her birth.

  4. I’m not a big fan of amaranth, either. does it have the usual funky amaranth taste, or do the herbs cover it up a bit?

  5. Cheryl, For me, the caraway really helps smooth out the flavor… and salt is important too. The herbs are good too- especially if you use a blend with strong flavors, and lots of rosemary. I like it, but it is a savory “brown” sort of flatbread.

    -Sea

  6. That combo looks really good, Sea. As far as amaranth, I still haven’t tried any, but I think some ingredients just have certain characteristics that work better even if you don’t think you’re a huge fan of them. I’d be happy to have a little party sampling these two treats. :-)

    Shirley

  7. Amaranth and quinoa are two very intriguing grains with distiinctive flavors that I find difficult to incorporate into recipes. Savory sounds like the way to go. Thanks for posting this – it goes in my ‘recipes to try’ queue!

  8. Where do you find unbuffered Vit. C crystals?

    I love amaranth. My favorite way to cook it thus far is simply to boil lightly in water until done (it’ll be sort of soupy), then add sea salt, oil of choice, a very little cayenne, turmeric, ginger, and a cut-up whole or half banana. I could eat several bowls of this for breakfast.

  9. Hi Shirley! Thanks!
    Hi Mom at the GF edge- yes, savory works well for amaranth. I think any strong flavor will do, though. I am currently working on an amaranth cinnamon-sugar scone.

    Hi Anna, You can find unbuffered vitamin c crystals at any health food store in the vitamin department. Your breakfast recipe sounds interesting. I’m intrigued by the combination of spicy and savory flavors… especially the banana. I may have to try it!

    -Sea

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