Love baking at the holidays? Try this holiday spiced mulled wine quick bread, a healthy makeover of blackberry wine cake.
[Disclosure: As co-owner of The Recipe ReDux I was compensated by California Raisins to host this contest. Opinions expressed are my own. This post also contains affiliate links to products used in recipe testing. Note that I will receive an extremely small payment if you purchase these products via the links provided.]
~by Regan Jones, RD
I love when I make bold statements and then have to retract them. I’m queen of this castle, really. Ask anybody who does conference calls with me. I have strong opinions, love to share them, and then love to argue myself out of what I just said. It’s one of my most
frustrating endearing characteristics.
So when I said a few weeks back I didn’t grow up around wine, that was only partially true. After much reflection about said “No Early Wine” exposure, I remembered my Mawmaw Jennings’ Blackberry Wine Cake.
If you’ve paid attention to any of my posts that mention a grandmother, you know Mawmaw Ween. She was my dad’s mom. She taught me to cook, inspired my love of food and nutrition. We were two peas in a pod.
Mawmaw Jennings is my mom’s mom. And she and Mawmaw Ween were not two peas in a pod. (Don’t misunderstand that to say they had anything against one another, they were just different… you know, cut from a different cloth.)
Mawmaw Jennings (who is now 82 and has the skin of a 40 year old… I swear other than her greying hair — which she did not “allow” to grey until recent years — her looks don’t age like the rest of us) has never been a big believer in nutrition. She wasn’t really passionate about cooking per se (not like Ween and me, you know?) She drove me nuts throwing caution to the wind when it came to food safety. If it all sounds bad, it’s not. I promise. Keep reading.
While Mawmaw Jennings may not have shared the food and nutrition interests I found endearing as a child and as an adult, I am definitely a product of her DNA. She loved to travel (as do I) and has literally been all over the world. Her work ethic was unrivaled, having been forced to leave high school early, only later to get her diploma and then in her 40s go to college, earning a spot on the Dean’s List. By the time she was in her 50s, she owned her own clothing shop in my hometown — an entrepreneurial drive that I respect and of course, relate to.
But what I will never, never forget about Mawmaw Jennings is her MAD sweet tooth.
…Folks, I’m talking EPIC sweet tooth. I’ve seen her eat a selection of desserts that made me look around for an insulin pump.
And never was her sweet tooth more handy than at the holidays. She may not have loved to cook. But she did like to bake… because she LOVED to sample what she made. #IGetThat
(Sidenote: If you, like Mawmaw, love to bake but need a little holiday help, be sure to check out this Holiday Baking Guide by our friends at Cooking Light)
Anyway, there were a lot of cakes Mawmaw made at the holidays, but one of her standard go-to choices was Blackberry Wine Cake.
Have you heard of it?
It’s really a fun little confection. Made from a boxed cake mix with jello and topped with a powdered sugar/wine glaze, it’s one of those fool-proof baked goods that turns out great every time.
And it’s what inspired today’s recipe
Gluten Free Mulled Wine Raisin Bread
I can’t really say that my new variation on this theme turned out similar to Mawmaw Jennings’. I’ve taken some pretty serious liberties with the recipe — having made it from scratch, gluten-free and with no added refined sugar. It’s really more of a sweet bread now, than a cake. But the hint of holiday spirit by using the sweet wine is definitely a tribute to Mawmaw’s favorite holiday cake. And I guess in some ways, it’s a metaphor for how very different, but yet so similar we both are. What would this world be like if we were all a Blackberry Wine Cake, you know?
Wishing each of you a very Merry Christmas with many Happy Holiday memories in the making and baking!!
Today’s recipe is a part of this month’s Sponsored Recipe Contest with California Raisins, who challenged Recipe ReDux members to create a new, healthy holiday treat using minimal added sugar and showcasing the holiday versatility of raisins. I think this bread does just that! But if you’re looking for even more great ways to bake and cook with raisins, be sure to check out all of the other ReDux posts below.
ad: Love baking at the holidays? Try this holiday spiced mulled wine quick bread by @ReganJonesRD Tweet this
Gluten Free Mulled Wine Raisin Bread
12 to 16 servings
- 1 teaspoon golden flaxmeal (I used Bob's Red Mill)
- 1 tablespoon very hot water
- 1/4 cup oil
- 1/3 cup applesauce
- 1/4 cup frozen orange juice concentrate, thawed and undiluted
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1/2 cup Lambrusco or sweet red wine (I used this brand from Aldi)
- 1 large egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 210g (about 1 1/2 cups) all-purpose gluten free flour (I used King Arthur)
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
- 3/4 cup California raisins (tossed with 1 tablespoon all-purpose gluten-free flour)
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 tablespoon Lambrusco or sweet red wine
- 1 tablespoon frozen orange juice concentrate, thawed
- Preheat oven to 375°.
- Coat an 8- x 8-inch loaf pan with cooking spray.
- Combine flaxmeal and hot water until a slurry forms; set aside.
- Combine oil, applesauce, orange juice, wine, egg and vanilla until smooth. Stir in flax slurry.
- Whisk together flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and salt; add to oil mixture and mix until smooth. Stir in raisins.
- Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake at 375° for 30 to 35 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in the center comes out clean.
- While bread bakes, combine honey, wine and juice in a small; microwave 10 seconds and stir well.
- After bread is removed from oven, let stand 5 minutes. Pour glaze over warm bread; let stand in pan 10 additional minutes. Remove from pan and let cool completely. Store in refrigerator, but warm before serving.
Note: Not to confuse anyone, but the name comes from the "flavor" of what you'd expect if you prepared Mulled Wine. Rather than preparing and then adding to the bread, you prepare this with a sweet wine and then add spices accordingly. If you're so inclined to want to learn how to make a variation on Mulled Wine "Wassail", check out the video above. Also note that the use of applesauce and orange juice concentrate makes this a very moist bread. If you prefer a drier bread, you might prefer to swap the applesauce for more oil.