This farro cornbread is a healthier version of the classic recipe and is made without refined flour or sugar.
The thing I love about the holiday season is the food; the thing I hate about the holiday season is the highly caloric and fatty dishes that fill up the dinner table. I’m not against splurging occasionally for a special day, but holiday feasting isn’t just a one-day event. In America it kicks off on Thanksgiving :: giorno del ringraziamento and lasts through the 1st of January. There is over a month of holiday parties and happy hours with friends and family. There is over a month of eating and drinking way more than we normally would and eating way more unhealthy foods because we continue to tell ourselves that it’s a special occasion. Does this ring a bell? It does for me. This past year I’ve worked really hard on maintaining a healthy lifestyle and I don’t want to pick up the bad habits that I’ve worked so hard to kick.
I say bring on the holiday cheer by eating good healthy food that won’t leave you feeling guilty afterwards. And, why does healthy food :: cibo sano get such a bad wrap? There are so many ways that you can still get the same flavor in a classic dish but lighten it up by using healthier substitutions:
Baked goods: swap the oil and butter for apple sauce, bananas or prune purée.
Refined sugars: search for recipes that use all natural organic sweeteners like honey, maple syrup, molasses, agave etc.
Refined flours: look for recipes with ancient whole grains (farro,Khorasan Grano (kamut®, spelt etc.)
Sour cream and mayonnaise: use plain Greek yogurt. It has a similar taste and texture.
Not long ago I met a few American gals living nearby here in Italy and have been so kindly invited to their Thanksgiving party this Saturday. One of the recipes that I was asked to bring is cornbread. I found this whole grain skillet corn bread recipe from Martha Stewart that looked delicious and went about experimenting to make it even healthier and vegan friendly by cutting out the sugar, substituting flax seed + water for the egg and using a soy milk :: latte di soia. The result? A fluffy and delicous cornbread that you feel good about eating.
- 1 slice lemon, squeezed
- A little less than 1 cup soy milk
- 1 tablespoon (10g) ground flax seed
- 3 tablespoon hot water
- ¼ cup plus 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 cup (130g) medium grind cornmeal, preferably stone ground
- 1 cup (130g) farro flour
- ½ teaspoon (3g) baking soda
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- ¾ teaspoon (6g) unrefined salt
- Honey*, as needed (For a vegan version don’t include or you can brush with a little bit of maple syrup or molasses)
- Put a round 10-inch (26cm) pan or cast iron skillet in the oven and preheat 400°F (200°C).
- In a 1 cup measuring cup, add the lemon juice then fill to the top with soy milk. Let sit for 2-3 minutes.
- In a small bowl whisk together the ground flax seed, hot water and ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil.
- In a medium bowl combine the cornmeal, farro, baking soda, baking powder and unrefined salt.
- Add the soy and lemon mixture to the wet ingredients, stir well, then fold it all into the dry mixture and stir until just combined.
- Add 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil to the preheated pan and swirl the pan around to evenly coat the bottom. Pour in the batter and smooth it out so it fills the entire pan. Bake for 16-20 minutes or until slightly golden brown and a toothpick comes out clean when poked in the center.
- Brush lightly with honey, let cool, then cut into wedges.
- Recipe adapted from Martha Stewert