Friday, June 29, 2012

Breadfruit: the new wheat?

I found out last night that a friend of a friend has been experimenting with steamed breadfruit as a primary baked good ingredient, with promising results. She made some breadfruit cookies that look just awesome!

I found a photo of them here, because a fellow blogger posted about the Puna 'Ulu Festival, where those breadfruit cookies proved themselves big time! The following is excerpted from said blog: 

Puna BF CC - Punana Cookies - Raven Hanna
The 1st Place Winner in the Dessert Category also took the overall Best of Show Award.
P┼źnana Cookies 
1-1/2 cups ripe 'ulu, steamed
1 cup finely chopped raw, unsalted macadamia nuts
1/2 cup shredded, dried, unsweetened coconut
Pinch sea salt
1/2 teaspoon cardamom
Homemade liliko'i ginger jelly
Macadamia nut oil for pan, optional 
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F 
Mash steamed breadfruit using a crank processor, a potato masher or a brief pulse in a blender.  The resulting paste should be sticky and clumpy, like buttermilk frosting. 
Put the macadamia nuts, coconut, salt and cardamom in a mixing bowl and fold in the breadfruit paste, much like mixing butter into a batter until all the ingredients are well incorporated. 
Either wipe a cookie sheet with macadamia oil or use a non-stick cookie sheet.  Take about one tablespoons of breadfruit batter and roll into a ball.  Form the dough into a nest with an impression on top for the jelly.  Wet hands can help form the well-structured nest.  Fill the sheet with the nests about 1 to 2 inches from each other.  Then add about 1/2 a teaspoon of jelly to each nest.  Liliko’i jelly is ono because of its bright, tart flavor, but any firm jam or jelly will work. 
Put the cookie sheet into the oven and bake at 350 degrees F for about 20 minutes, or until the cookies are lightly browned on the bottom and/or top.  Remove and cool on a rack.  Enjoy! 
Notes: This recipe is easy, healthy (for a dessert), and can be sourced completely locally! Plus, it is vegan and gluten free
Yield: about 24 cookies.
Entry by: Raven Hanna and Jeremy Lutes, Pahoa

Awesome, right? I must try these soon.

It turns out that there are some efforts currently underway to dry and pound breadfruit into a flour for import from other countries. Click here to read about one such effort. It's not a grain, so woohoo for us Paleo peeps!

For those who may not know, breadfruit is an awesome tropical plant that you can read more about here!

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