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Grain-free pumpkin-butternut bars

Autumn has slowly been making it’s presence known. It’s evident in the slight morning chill, the earlier sunsets and cooler evening temperatures. We are still blessed, however, to be enjoying lovely temperate days and the occasional visit to the beach has been possible. Where we live, we do not experience the changing hues of the tree foliage as much as in other parts of the country or world. So I decided to try these autumn-coloured bars. Flavoured with just the right amount of cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and cloves, the gentle fragrance comforts the soul and hints at the lovely stews and curries that are synonymous with winter.

Super easy to prepare. This recipe can be doubled. To make it a little more special, serve with a maple-pecan glaze (recipe to follow soon). Lovely to put into your little one’s lunch tin as a surprise.

The pumpkin/butternut puree can be made by steaming the veg in a steamer or in a pot with a little water on the stove until tender and easy to mash. I use my stick-blender with it’s masher attachment or I place it straight into the food processor fixed with an S-blade. Once it’s all mashed/pureed, I add the rest of the ingredients.

Grain-Free Pumpkin/Butternut Bars

Preheat oven to 180˚C once the puree is ready.

Ingredients

½ cup pumpkin/butternut puree
½ cup almond butter* (see note)
⅓ cup honey
2 eggs
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground ginger
¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
pinch cloves
¼ teaspoon salt (I use Himilayan Crystal Salt)
½ teaspoon bicarbonate of soda

Method

Grease a 20x20cm baking dish with coconut oil or butter.
Once the pumpkin/butternut has been pureed, add the rest of the ingredients to the food processor (I have succesfully mixed this with a handheld mixer too).
Mix well until all the ingredients are combined.
Pour into baking dish.
Bake for 20-25 minutes until top is firm when pressed.
Remove from oven and allow to cool in the dish.
Cut into squares and eat with your choice of tea or coffee.

These can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week. I have not tried to freeze them as they never last that long in our family but I think they would freeze well.

*Almond butter is expensive so I make my own. Watch out for my post on that soon. Peanut butter can be used as a substitute without compromising on texture or taste.

Happy baking…

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