Food and Recipe of the Month: Molasses
Care of Amy Symington of ameliaeats.com
When thinking of molasses we’re often reminded of the stick-to-your-ribs, molasses-rich baked beans, grandma’s sticky date spread, or hot porridge on a cold morning topped with heaping spoonfuls of the sticky stuff – past memories of our childhood. Even now, most packaging found in the baking aisle screams old timeyness. However, one should not be fooled by the nostalgia of it all; molasses has never been more “now.”
Derived from cane or beet sugar, molasses is most commonly used in baked goodies. This holiday season, molasses more than surely makes a guest appearance on the dessert table in various spiced cookie and cake forms. However, its deep, rich and bold flavour can sneak its way into the most unfamiliar areas of the kitchen and we should be joyful that it does. Molasses has a great deal of (gasp) nutritional benefits to note; blackstrap molasses in particular. It is obtained after the third extraction during sugar processing and has the lowest sugar content of all the extractions (the first and second are lighter molasses and have higher sugar contents).
Blackstrap molasses is an excellent source of manganese and copper, as well as being a very good source of iron, calcium, potassium and magnesium. Some even use it as a natural supplement for these minerals. Although, before throwing out all of your supplements, a quick check with the doc never hurt anyone. In addition to upping your energy, and supporting healthy bones and hearts, molasses is also a good source of B6 and selenium, which respectively, helps that nervous system do its job as well as clear your system of free radicals!
So when reaching for sweeteners for hot bevvies, sweet and/or savoury sauces, or your Christmas baking, remember your deliciously viscous old friend, molasses – overloaded with minerals that other sugars and artificial sweeteners are often stripped of. Mo’ molasses, please!
Pumpkin Molasses Pancakes
Makes 8 large pancakes
1 cup roasted pumpkin puree
2 1/4 cups unsweetened soy milk or other plant-based milk
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 tbsp molasses
2 1/4 cups whole grain spelt flour
1 tbsp baking soda
1 tbsp ground flaxseed
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp cardamom
1. Blend wet ingredients in a blender and set aside.
2. In a large mixing bowl whisk together whole grain spelt flour, baking soda, ground flaxseed, cinnamon, nutmeg and cardamom.
3. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and whisk.
4. Ladle a heaping 1/3 cup onto a heated and well greased pan. I used coconut oil. Repeat until batter is finished. This will make 8 uber fluffy, perfect little pumpkin infused pancakes. We then topped ours with pecans, pomegranate seeds, black strap molasses and a little dark maple syrup.