Saturday 1 January 2011

Sweet Potato Cornbread (GF)

I’ve tried cornbreads in the past, but never been a particularly big fan of them. I have found them to be a bit gritty, dry and crumbly unless submerged in soups or stews. However, my opinions of cornbread changed when I saw, made and tasted this recipe. It’s based on a recipe I saw on Karina’s blog - Gluten Free Goddess. This blog has become my new go-to blog for any gluten free recipe inspiration I require. All her food looks amazing and the minute I saw this cornbread I instantly thought ‘I have to make this.’

This cornbread is a sort of cross between a cake and a bread. It’s both sweet and savoury and uses a combination of mashed sweet potato, brown sugar and spices to add extra depth and flavour. It’s made using half fine cornmeal and half buckwheat flour, whose nutty sweet flavour complemented the other ingredients beautifully.

Sweet potato may sound like an odd ingredient to use in bread, but it adds a wonderful sweetness and autumnal orange colour. It also ensures the cornbread stays beautifully moist, soft and springy – no more dry crumbly cornbread here! I was also impressed how light it was, not dense or heavy in the slightest.

I adored the flavour of this bread. I reduced the sugar content quite substantially as I intended using it in a savoury dish, meaning the natural sweetness from the sweet potato was the underlying flavour which complemented the spices with delicious result. As it was not too sweet, I found it went well with both sweet and savoury dishes from breakfast to dinner. It’s definitely going to become a regular on baking list. Gluten free or not, I encourage you all to give it a go.

P.S. Happy New Year to you all! Hope it’s a good one.

Sweet Potato Cornbread (GF)
(Recipe adapted from Gluten Free Goddess blog)
3 eggs
100ml vegetable oil
175g mashed sweet potato (250g raw)
55g light soft brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
½ tsp cinnamon
1 tsp mixed spice
120g fine cornmeal
120g buckwheat flour
½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
1½ tsp baking powder
Pinch of salt

Start by making the sweet potato puree. Cut a large sweet potato into quarters, leaving the skin on. Place into a glass bowl and cover the base with 2cm of water. Cover the top in clingfilm and microwave for 7-8 minutes until soft.
Allow to cool for 10 minutes before scooping out the softened flesh using a spoon. Mash with a fork until fairly smooth, but a few lumpy bits are fine. Weigh out 175g and set aside.
Grease an 8inch/20cm deep springform pan and line the base with greaseproof paper.
In a large bowl, whisk the eggs until frothy, then slowly drizzle in the oil, still whisking. Add the sweet potato puree, sugar, vanilla, salt and spices and whisk well to combine.
Scatter the cornmeal, buckwheat flour, baking powder and soda over the surface and fold in gently using a spatula, turning the bowl as you go.
Pour the batter into the pan and smooth the surface. Bake for 40-45 minutes until springy and firm to the touch.
Allow the cornbread to cool in the pan for 10 minutes before releasing and leaving to cool to room temperature or just warm before serving.
Makes 1 20cm/8inch cornbread

Tastes great on its own when freshly baked but also works well with both sweet and savoury dishes as it’s not too sweet. I’ve used it to accompany soups, bean stews or as stuffing as well as serving it for breakfast with yogurt and stewed fruit or warmed with Nutella. The sweet potato, sugar and spices complement each other beautifully.

I used some of this cornbread in a fruity stuffed acorn roasted squash that I had for my Christmas lunch. It’s another recipe inspired by Karina from the Gluten Free Goddess blog. I used a mix of fresh cranberries, apple, red onion and sage which I sautéed off first before combining it with the sweet potato cornbread crumbs to stuff inside an acorn squash. The squash was roasted for an hour first before adding the stuffing and roasted again for a further20minutes. Delicious! (Photo of the squash before the final roasting)


Chele said...

Oh that does look good. Hubby loves cornbread but none of the ones I've made have ever met with the seal of approval so I may need to test the recipe out on him ;0)

Johanna GGG said...

sounds delicious - there is a recipe for sweet potato and buckwheat groats burger on diet dessert and dogs that I have liked the look of so I am quite prepared to believe this is an excellent combination

Beth (jamandcream) said...

All of previous efforts have been below par - they are always underseasoned! This looks delicious

Monica H said...

Oh nice! I like a sweet cornbread and I bet this was killer. I've never seen cornbread with sweet potato, but I am intrigued.

Crepes of Wrath said...

This is a beautiful looking cornbread! I love that it's gluten free - I've been trying to expand my baking into that spectrum. Thank you for the recipe!

Lish said...

This sounds really interesting - and I think it would be good for my tummy - I think I have a slight gluten intolerance!!

Choclette said...

That sounds really delicious and interesting with the sweet potato. I use buckwheat flour a lot in my baking and really like it - PLUS it's quite a nutritious flour, so even better. Just made a cake with squash and buckwheat and that worked really well.