Converting a 'regular' recipe to a 'more healthy' recipe is really very easy! The basis for making all quick breads, muffins, cakes and cookies is the same. They are all made from the same ingredients. The thing that makes a pancake a pancake and not a muffin has to do with the method of cooking and a minor variance in ingredient quantities!
     So, when you go to convert a recipe, remember that to make a pancake and not a muffin, you have to have the end mix equal the orginal recipe mix in it's texture (the amount of liquids have to equal the amount of dry ingredients).
     Also, be aware that Sprouted Flours are much drier than regular flours and that all recipes will either need to have less flour OR more liquid added to them.
     The following will give you some basic ideas about different, healthier ingredients and how to use them.
     About Sprouted Spelt. For all recipes, except for cakes, you can use the same amount of Sprouted Spelt Flour where the recipe calls for flour. When making cakes, I have found that you can use LESS Sprouted Spelt Flour than the recipe calls for. I make a Chocolate Zucchini Cake that orginally called for 2 1/2 cups of flour. Using this much Sprouted Spelt Flour made the cake very dense.....so I used 1 3/4 cup in the recipe the next time I made it and it came out perfect, light and fluffy, and delicious!
     About Sprouted Wheat. Like Sprouted Spelt Flour, Sprouted Wheat Flour can be used in any recipe in place of other flours. Sprouted Wheat Flour is high in gluten and it will create a slightly lighter product than Sprouted Spelt Flour. It is also a lighter taste than spelt. I prefer to use Sprouted Wheat when I don't want the taste of the grain competing with the delicate flavors of the product, ie. pie crusts, pastas with a delicate sauce, or shortbreads.
     About Sprouted Rye Flour. We use a mid-range rye for our flour, not a light or a dark rye. And sprouting makes it a milder taste than regular rye. But most of the recipes I have tried, I have used the same amount of rye flour that the recipes have called for and they have been fine.
     About Converting Sugars. You can see from the recipes, that I frequently call for 'Sucanat'. Sucanat is a brand name for granulated cane juice and it is wonderful stuff. The organic sugar cane is juiced and the juice is dried. The resulting granules dissolve quickly in liquids and so you can use them just like sugar crystals; but they still retain the vitamins and minerals originally in the sugar cane juice. They have a slight molasses taste.
     Sucanat is also dehydrated and, unlike sugar crystals, it will soak up moisture. So, like the drier sprouted flours, you will need to compensate for this extra dryness by either adding more liquid or reducing the amount of Sucanat.
     Another dehydrated cane juice product that is becoming popular is called Rapadura. To date, I have not been able to obtain any Rapadura, but customers are telling me that they are using it just like Sucanat in my recipes.
     The other dry sweetener I recommend and use is granulated maple sugar......but I treat it like gold because it's very pricey. You can use it in pretty much the same quanitity as the sugar called for in any recipe.
     If you chose to use a liquid sweetener (maple syrup, malt syrup, rice syrup, molasses or honey) instead of a dry sweetener, the one thing you have to remember to do is balance out this extra liquid addition in the final texture. You can do several things......you can lessen the other liquids in the recipe, like using less milk or yogurt or one less egg...or you can add more dry ingredients until the texture is right (remember that this will give you slightly more of your end product).
     Also, be aware that liquid sweeteners tend to make everything a little heavier and the baked texture slightly sticky (esp. the tops of cakes, quick breads and muffins); this is especially so for things like banana, pumpkin or zucchini bread. If you want a lighter texture, use dry sweeteners.
     When a regular recipe calls for brown sugar, you can subsitute sucanat or maple syrup or a combination of honey and a little molasses. You will end up with a pretty similar taste.
     About Oils and Butter. I tend to cut way back on the oils, shortening or butter that a regular recipe calls for. There are very few recipes that require the amounts of fat that are listed; shortbread-type cookies are one of these.
     I almost always use butter in my recipes because of its ease in digesting and the great taste it adds to baked goods. But, again, I ususally cut the amount in half.....
     About Dairy Products and Liquid Additions. All dairy products are basically interchangeable! Because milk is so hard to digest, I use diluted yogurt instead. And if I want to add more richness, I will use diluted sour cream, cream cheese, blended cottage cheese or diluted kefir cheese. Remember that these cultured or soured dairy products will lower the sweetness of the end product and so will require you adding more sweetener to get the same affect.
     In most recipes. you can exchange the liquid needed to any other liquid. You can use any juice in a muffin, cake or pancake recipe or even just plain water. But, be aware that dairy products give baked goods a more tender texture; using other liquids may give the end product a more spongy or rubbery texture.
     Experiment and taste. Since I tend to make all my cakes, muffins and quick breads the same way I make pancakes, by throwing everything together and never measuring, I use the taste method to decide whether I'm going to like the end product. So, stick those fingers in the batter and lick away.....and see if you like it....if not, change it now.
     Like most cooking, if it tastes good as you are making it, it's most likely going to taste good when it's cooked.

 

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