Monday, May 7, 2012

Molasses Cornmeal Bread with Dark Chocolate Chunks

This is straight up breakfast/brunch material.

The day and time of day that I find myself most often having last minute guests is on Sunday afternoons.

That's brunch business.

This is what I make happen when brunch time visitors happen.

I really like molasses paired with bitter chocolate. It's a wonderful combo that's not found anywhere on a McDonald's breakfast menu.

This bread has no eggs. It's straight up molasses, chocolate and cornmeal goodness.

The cornmeal lends a surprising sort of soft crunch, if that makes any sense ??

It's perfect because it dances on the line of sweet and savoury. 

If you leave out the chocolate, this bread makes friends very easily with fried eggs.

If you toast this in slices and break the yolk of a sunny-side-up right on top, that might just be one of the best ideas you've had all day.

You can eat it alone. But, I prefer it with cream cheese and a drizzle of honey. How about peanut butter? Peanut butter and dark chocolate and molasses. That totally works.

Molasses Cornmeal Bread with Dark Chocolate Chunks
Makes 8-10 servings

355 g (2 ½ cups) all-purpose flour
85 g (½ cup) yellow cornmeal
1 tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
½ tsp ground cinnamon
¼ tsp ground clove
100 g/3.5 oz bittersweet chocolate (72% cocoa), coarsely chopped
½ cup full fat sour cream
1 cup 2% milk
¼ cup pure canola oil
½ cup fancy molasses

Preheat your oven to 325°F.  Line a 9×5-inch loaf pan with parchment paper, leaving is a 2-inch overhang coming up along the lengths for easy release after baking. Lightly butter the exposed sides and set aside.  

In a large bowl, whisk together flour, cornmeal, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and ground clove. Stir in the chopped chocolate and set aside.

In a medium bowl whisk together sour cream, milk, canola oil and molasses until well blended. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and gently pour in the wet mixture. Begin by stirring gently until and then fold the ingredients together to combine. Do not over-mix. The batter will be slightly thick.  

Spoon batter into prepared pan and bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 50-55 minutes.  

Transfer pan to a wire rack and let the loaf cool in the pan for 20 minutes.  Run a butter knife along the sides of the pan and carefully invert onto a wire rack.

It tastes great warm, but will keep at room temperature for up to 4 days wrapped in plastic and stored in an airtight container.

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