Posts Tagged ‘Nancy Silverton’

Wordless Wednesday: Sweet Potato Sourdough Bread

August 28, 2013

 

smallyamsourdoughtext

 

This sourdough bread, made with roasted sweet potato and pumpkin seeds is from Nancy Silverton’s Breads from the La Brea Bakery. I like how the breads sort of look like split sweet potatoes.

If you would like to see a detailed photo tutorial with a recipe, take a look at this Hoppy Okapi blog post (and also take a look at Farine’s post).

The only change to the recipe that I would make is to eliminate the ground cumin. The spice does complement the sweet potato flavor, but is, I think, a bit too definite. Every bite I took, I thought: This is cumin flavored bread and I’m not sure how I feel about eating cumin flavored bread.¬† The bread flavor would have been subtler and more versatile without the cumin.

Advertisements

Maida’s Famous Bran Muffins and a Variation

February 15, 2012

At the risk of gross oversimplification, there are basically two ways to make bran muffins: (1) with unprocessed wheat bran, and (2) with bran cereal.

You would think that cereal would be the more expensive option, but an 18 ounce box of All Bran Cereal costs about the same as a 14 ounce box of Hodgson Mills Unprocessed Bran. Some cereals have additives, like artificial sweeteners, but the above cereal is just bran, sugar, malt and salt. Comparing the nutritional information on the boxes, I figured out that 93 grams of cereal (about 1 1/2 cups) is the same as 75 grams of unprocessed bran (about 1 1/4 cups). So pricewise and nutritionwise, there isn’t too much difference.

The bran cereal is pre-cooked, which is a disadvantage is certain applications, but I think an advantage with something that is so briefly baked (muffins bake for 15-20 minutes). In fact, in doing a side by side comparison of bran muffins baked with cereal and unprocessed bran, I toasted the unprocessed bran before adding it to the batter to add some deeper color and flavor.

One more advantage in using cereal rather than unprocessed bran: you can readily eat up the leftover cereal for breakfast (well, over the course of many breakfasts), while the rest of the box of bran might linger in the freezer for a while.

Is there a taste advantage of one versus the other? I’m not sure. I made two batches of muffins and compared them side by side and the flavor was fairly similar.

So, the choice is yours. The below recipe¬† (adapted from Maida Heatter’s famous recipe) lets you choose either raw bran flakes or cereal. And, by the way, if you think bran muffins are dry and tasteless, you must try this moist, deeply flavorful muffin.

(more…)