79.6 F
Cruz Bay
Tuesday, April 16, 2024


Dec. 23, 2001 – Indulging in holiday food favorites doesn't have to mean putting on extra pounds for the New Year. A "slimmed-down" sweetbread offers a way to savor the flavor of the season and maintain your waistline, too.
Traditionally served for Christmas morning breakfast along with a slice of ham and a cup of guavaberry, sweetbread is a cross between a rich bread and a dessert. Its richness comes from being chock full of dried fruits that have been soaked in rum or guavaberry liqueur, along with staples such as flour, butter, sugar and eggs.
In the recipe below, developed by St. Thomas culture-bearer Dorothy Elskoe and registered dietitian Ermin Olive for "Shape-Up Virgin Islands" on WTJX TV, pureed prunes, egg whites in place of whole eggs and fat-free evaporated milk replace much of the fat in traditional recipes. In place of sugar, Splenda — a calorie-free sugar substitute — is used. All the spices stay the same to give the bread its characteristic taste. Dried fruits add flavor, too. While this sweetbread is virtually fat-free, it isn't calorie free, so portion control is still advisable for those concerned about adding holiday pounds.
Best yet for weight control, head out caroling this Christmas season and enjoy a walk around your neighborhood or down at Emancipation Garden. Then when the singing begins: "Good morning, good morning, I come for me Guavaberry …" just slice into a slimmed-down sweetbread and get ready to start a healthful New Year!
Slimmed-Down Sweetbread
1 1/2 cups pureed prunes
1 1/2 to 2 cups Splenda
6 egg whites
3 tablespoons vanilla essence
2 tablespoons almond essence
1/2 cup guavaberry liqueur
1 teaspoon lemon essence
6 1/2 cups sifted all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons baking powder
1 tablespoon lecithin granules
1 teaspoon grated nutmeg
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1-teaspoon anise seeds
1 teaspoon grated lemon peel
1 (13-ounce) can fat-free evaporated milk mixed with 2 1/2 cups warm water
1 1/2 pounds raisins (floured)
1 pound mixed dried fruits (floured)
1/2 pound currants (floured)
Garnish: red and green candied cherries, pecans or walnuts, seedless prunes
Sugar syrup
Place prune puree in a large mixing bowl. Add Splenda and egg whites. Stir in vanilla and almond essence, guavaberry liqueur, and lemon essence. In a second mixing bowl, combine flour, baking powder, lecithin granules, nutmeg, cinnamon, anise and lemon peel. Add flour mixture to flavored sugar mixture, alternating with milk-and-water solution. Stir in floured raisins, mixed dried fruits and currants. Spray three fluted or Bundt pans with nonstick coating spray. Spoon dough evenly into the pans. Decorate top of each bread with red and green candied cherries, pecans or walnuts and seedless prunes. Bake at 325 F for 30 to 45 minutes.
When done, remove breads from the oven. Brush with sugar syrup made by dissolving 1 tablespoon brown sugar in 1/2 cup water. The sugar syrup gives the bread a shiny appearance.
Makes three sweetbreads, each with 24 servings. Per slice: 315 calories, 0.5 gms fat (1 percent fat calories), 0.5 mg cholesterol, 157 mg sodium.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Keeping our community informed is our top priority.
If you have a news tip to share, please call or text us at 340-228-8784.

Support local + independent journalism in the U.S. Virgin Islands

Unlike many news organizations, we haven't put up a paywall – we want to keep our journalism as accessible as we can. Our independent journalism costs time, money and hard work to keep you informed, but we do it because we believe that it matters. We know that informed communities are empowered ones. If you appreciate our reporting and want to help make our future more secure, please consider donating.