By Andrea Cullen
12th July 2014
A few months ago we did a big shop with Real Foods UK and since then all their flours have been sitting safely packed away WAITING. Today I decided to have a play and get creative with some of the ingredients. The results were Potato, Thyme and Turmeric bread and Carrot and Caraway bread. I didn’t use a recipe so I was pretty astonished at how well they turned out.
This bread has no added fats or sugar, is gluten, egg and dairy-free and made from healthier flour choices that are higher in healthy fats, vitamins, minerals, fibre, and protein than your regular flours. Also due to the addition of psyllium husks the bread has a higher fibre content and is has a fluffier consistency by virtue of this addition.
I expected the bread to fall apart given there was no egg or protein powder but it has held together well, sliced well, and also froze well.
I am thrilled that the addition of turmeric worked so well as turmeric is an amazing spice; every month more research comes out to document its multiple effects on the immune system, cardiovascular system, neuromuscular system, liver, gallbladder and gastrointestinal system. Turmeric is a potent anti-inflammatory, cell detoxifier, and antioxidant and has cancer preventative effects. The Worlds Healthiest Foods webpage gives a wonderful summary of the health benefits of turmeric.
Here also are two abstracts from PubMed the go to online medical research library:
Plant-derived health: the effects of turmeric and curcuminoids.
Plants contain numerous polyphenols, which have been shown to reduce inflammation and hereby to increase resistance to disease. Examples of such polyphenols are isothiocyanates in cabbage and broccoli, epigallocatechin in green tee, capsaicin in chili peppers, chalones, rutin and naringenin in apples, resveratrol in red wine and fresh peanuts and curcumin/curcuminoids in turmeric.
Most diseases are maintained by a sustained discreet but obvious increased systemic inflammation. Many studies suggest that the effect of treatment can be improved by a combination of restriction in intake of proinflammatory molecules such as advanced glycation end products (AGE), advanced lipoperoxidation end products (ALE), and rich supply of antiinflammatory molecules such as plant polyphenols.
To the polyphenols with a bulk of experimental documentation belong the curcuminoid family and especially its main ingredient, curcumin. This review summarizes the present knowledge about these turmericderived ingredients, which have proven to be strong antioxidants and inhibitors of cyclooxigenase-2 (COX-2), lipoxygenase (LOX) and nuclear factor kappa B (NF-kappaB) but also AGE. A plethora of clinical effects are reported in various experimental diseases, but clinical studies in humans are few.
It is suggested that supply of polyphenols and particularly curcuminoids might be value as complement to pharmaceutical treatment, but also prebiotic treatment, in conditions proven to be rather therapy-resistant such as Crohn’s, long-stayed patients in intensive care units, but also in conditions such as cancer, liver cirrhosis, chronic renal disease, chronic obstructive lung disease, diabetes and Alzheimer’s disease.
Curcumin as “Curecumin”: from kitchen to clinic.
Although turmeric (Curcuma longa; an Indian spice) has been described in Ayurveda, as a treatment for inflammatory diseases and is referred by different names in different cultures, the active principle called curcumin or diferuloylmethane, a yellow pigment present in turmeric (curry powder) has been shown to exhibit numerous activities. Extensive research over the last half century has revealed several important functions of curcumin. It binds to a variety of proteins and inhibits the activity of various kinases. By modulating the activation of various transcription factors, curcumin regulates the expression of inflammatory enzymes, cytokines, adhesion molecules, and cell survival proteins. Curcumin also downregulates cyclin D1, cyclin E and MDM2; and upregulates p21, p27, and p53. Various preclinical cell culture and animal studies suggest that curcumin has potential as an antiproliferative, anti-invasive, and antiangiogenic agent; as a mediator of chemoresistance and radioresistance; as a chemopreventive agent; and as a therapeutic agent in wound healing, diabetes, Alzheimer disease, Parkinson disease, cardiovascular disease, pulmonary disease, and arthritis. Pilot phase I clinical trials have shown curcumin to be safe even when consumed at a daily dose of 12g for 3 months. Other clinical trials suggest a potential therapeutic role for curcumin in diseases such as familial adenomatous polyposis, inflammatory bowel disease, ulcerative colitis, colon cancer, pancreatic cancer, hypercholesteremia, atherosclerosis, pancreatitis, psoriasis, chronic anterior uveitis and arthritis. Thus, curcumin, a spice once relegated to the kitchen shelf, has moved into the clinic and may prove to be “Curecumin”.
I would guess that the quantities I used to create this bread are fairly flexible and that you could use quinoa or buckwheat flour instead of chickpea flour and hemp seeds or sesame seeds instead of chia.
It is worth investing in a set of measuring cups for baking as it makes life so much easier! Although saying this I am only measuring things so that I can pass on my recipe; I never weigh the ingredients when baking my crazy inventions.
Have fun with it!
- 4 baby potatoes – washed and grated by hand or in a food processor
- 1 heaped teaspoon thyme
- 1 heaped tablespoon dried turmeric
- 1 cup organic gluten-free oat flour (I used Bob Mills)
- ½ cup organic almond flour
- ¼ cup organic coconut flour
- ½ cup organic chickpea
- ½ cup gluten-free self-raising flour (Dove’s farm)
- ½ cup chia seeds (whole seeds and not milled seeds; for example Chia Bia)
- 3 teaspoons gluten-free baking powder (Dove’s farm gluten-free baking powder)
- 3 heaped tablespoons psyllium husks
- 1 teaspoon salt (Himalayan, Celtic or Atlantic)
- Water to desired consistency
- Place all the ingredients (the grated potato, thyme, turmeric, salt, oat flour, almond flour, coconut flour, chickpea flour, baking powder, psyllium husks, salt, chia seeds, and white flour) in a large glass bowl.
- Mix well using a large spoon or fork.
- Add the water slowly while mixing and using your judgment add more water as necessary to create a mixture that holds together. Allow the mixture to settle for a few minutes adding more water as necessary to create a mixture with the consistency of regular bread.
- The coconut flour and psyllium husks soak up the water so leaving this rest a few minutes is important as more than likely you will need to add more water than you thought!! The texture will be on the fluffy side and less dense than regular bread mixture.
- Place in a standard bread tin that has been lined and greased.
- Bake at 220 C / 430 F for ten minutes and then drop the temperature to 200-210 C/ 390-410 F for approximately another 40 minutes depending on the temperature of your oven (I bake in a convection oven).
- The baked bread should come out slightly on the moist side when a knife is run through it. It will dry further in the following hour.
- Allow to cool and enjoy!!
- This bread will slice and freeze well.