I finally tried my hand at baking at a higher altitude! I wanted to make zucchini bread however I forgot my grater in the moving process and didn’t feel like running out to the store to buy one, so I opted for pumpking bread (which is my favorite anyway)! I was a little nervous for my first time baking in Denver as I have always baked in Florida where elevation isn’t an issue. So I figured I would just create a recipe and use it as practice. I decided to make it dairy free and use coconut oil as the fat in the recipe. It came out GREAT!
Why use coconut oil?
Coconut oil is an emerging functional food that is believed to help lower cholesterol, improve immune function, and even aid in weight loss and exercise performance. The health benefits of coconut oil come from its composition, mainly Medium Chain Fatty acids (also known as Medium Chain Triglycerides) and Lauric acid. Medium Chain fatty acids are metabolized differently than most fats and are burned for energy rather than stored as fat. Lauric acid is converted into monolaurin, which has anti-viral, anti-bacterial, and anti-inflammatory properties. For more information, see the list of resources at the end of this post.
Whole Wheat Pumpkin Bread
1/3 cup coconut oil
1/2 cup honey*
1 cup pumpkin purée
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 3/4 cups whole wheat pastry flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 cup hot water
Turbinado (raw) sugar for sprinkling on top
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Grease a 9×5 loaf pan with coconut oil.
Beat oil and honey together.
Add eggs, one at a time, and mix well.
Add pumpkin purée and vanilla, scraping the bowl.
Fold in flour, salt, and pumpking pie spice.
In a separate bowl, combine baking soda to hot water, stir to mix. Add to batter.
Pour batter into prepared pan.
Sprinkle top with turbinado sugar
Bake for 55-60 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean and the bread is pulling away from the sides of the pan.
Cool on wire rack for 1/2 hour before slicing.
*To make vegan you can easily substitute agave for honey and use an egg replacer such as flaxseed and water.
Resources for health benefits of coconut oil:
Kaunitz H, Dayrit CS. Coconut oil consumption and coronary heart disease. Philippine Journal of Internal Medicine, 1992;30:165-171
Prior IA, Davidson F, Salmond CE, Czochanska Z. Cholesterol, coconuts, and diet on Polynesian atolls: a natural experiment: The Pukapuka and Tokelau Island studies, American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 1981;34:1552-1561
Baba, N 1982.Enhanced thermogenesis and diminished deposition of fat in response to overfeeding with diet containing medium-chain triglycerides, Am. J. Clin. Nutr., 35:379
Dr. Mary G. Enig, Ph.D., F.A.C.N. Source: Coconut: In Support of Good Health in the 21st Century (6) Isaacs CE, Litov RE, Marie P, Thormar H. Addition of lipases to infant formulas produces antiviral and antibacterial activity, Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry, 1992;3:304-308.
St-Onge MP, Jones PJ. Greater rise in fat oxidation with medium-chain triglyceride consumption relative to long-chain triglyceride is associated with lower initial body weight and greater loss of subcutaneous adipose tissue, International Journal of Obesity & Related Metabolic Disorders, 2003 Dec;27(12):1565-71. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12975635
Geliebter, A 1980. Overfeeding with a diet of medium-chain triglycerides impedes accumulation of body fat, Clinical Nutrition, 28:595
Fushiki, T and Matsumoto, K Swimming endurance capacity of mice is increased by consumption of medium-chain triglycerides, Journal of Nutrition, 1995;125:531. http://www.coconut-connections.com/hypothyroidism.htm