Oh, Pumpkin!! This fruit is part of the squash family or Cucurbita pepo. With the fall season still afoot you may find that you adorn the front of your home with such pumpkins as Spirit, Trick-or-Treat and Connecticut Field. In your kitchen, you may find a nice sweet pie pumpkin. All squash can be eaten. I prefer to squash the French way, however it acorn squashes make a fantastic and creamy addition to lasagna.
Though a little light sweetness is always pleasant and when it is balanced out nicely it can truly be a healthy treat. Pumpkins/squash are a great source of Vitamin A, Vitamin C, fibre, Vitamin B6, Manganese and Copper. They are a great antioxidant and aid in reducing inflammation in the body as well as promoting the healthy balance of one’s blood sugar levels.
I have had a hankering for some sweet pumpkin treats. Something creamy and chocolaty – Yummy! This bar has all of that, and it is gluten-free.
As I write this up, I am eating – several pieces – and drinking some kombucha green tea from Yogi (so delicious) as I also admire the colours of the leaves this fall.
For this, you can use a small can of pumpkin puree or a pie pumpkin (measure out 400ml). Cut it in half and scrape out the seeds – make sure that your oven is preheating at 375 degrees C. Place the pumpkin open face down on a parchment paper covered baking sheet. Let it bake for one hour. Once you have taken it out let it cool, after which scrape and puree the flesh of the pumpkin. Measure out the desired amount.
If you don’t have too much time on your hands use a can of Organic Pie Pumpkin Puree.
Pumpkin Swirl Bars
Gluten Free Pumpkin Bar
3 tbsp coconut flour*
1 tsp of vanilla bean powder
1/4 cup of almond flour
1 tsp of baking soda
2 tsp of baking powder
pinch of Himalayan salt
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp of dried ginger or gingerbread spices
3/4 organic butter
1/2 cup of organic raw sugar**
3 eggs pastured eggs
1 can of organic pumpkin puree
1/3 cup + 1 tbsp of mascarpone
2 tbsp organic raw sugar**
1 tbsp milk or nut milk
Chopped unsweetened chocolate, I like Giddy Yoyo and ChocoSol. They use all natural ingredients, no preservative or flavourings. I would say that about half a bar is good enough, you can eat the rest.
- Preheat the oven to 325 degrees C. Line a baking sheet (one that is at least an inch high) with parchment paper.
- In a large mixing bowl combine softened butter, sugar and vanilla bean and whisk until well combined and fluffy.
- Add in the eggs one at a time and whisk them in so that they are nicely incorporated. Once they have all been folded in add in the pumpkin puree.
- In a separate bowl (I just used a glass measuring cup) combine the dry ingredients – coconut flour, almond flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and ginger.
- Shift in the dry ingredients into the wet and gently fold and incorporate them in with a wooden spoon.
- Pour the pumpkin bar base into the baking pan and spread around evenly.
- In a separate bowl combine mascarpone cheese with the sugar, milk and egg. Gently whisk them all together until well incorporated and silky smooth. With a spoon portion out the sweet cheesecake mixture in dollops leaving an inch in between each.
- With a chopstick or a butter knife draw out swirls throughout the cake. Top with crushed chocolate pieces.
- Bake for between 25-30 minutes. Check with a toothpick to see if it is done (if it comes out clean you are good).
- Let it cool for 3 hours or overnight so as to allow the coconut flour to absorb all the moisture.
*Add an extra tbsp of coconut flour if you’d like a less moist bar.
**Instead of sugar you can also use honey.
This dessert is GLUTEN FREE so be sure to share it!! It’s great to take to school, work, on a picnic and to parties. Yummy!!
Honey is a great substitute for sugar, however, it does burn under high heat. If you do decide to use honey in the recipe I would suggest another tbsp of coconut flour so balance off the added liquid. You could also cook at a slightly lower temperature but it really wouldn’t make much difference.
You can also make this bar from flour (it will require 2 cups), but it is a truly phenomenal gluten-free bar. The coconut and the almond flour work great with the pumpkin and leave it both fluffy and moist.