Have you tried Quinoa before? It’s the latest craze next to couscous. I hadn’t really tried any of it before now. My brother went to Costco and bought two big bags of it. We went from eating white rice, to multigrain rice, to brown rice to quinoa. It’s a good source of protein and amino acids as well as many minerals and vitamins. If you haven’t tried it, use it as a substitute for rice one night for a side dish. It’s texture is better than rice I find.
I had looked online for several recipes that use Quinoa, but I was surprised to find not many used it in baking. I cam across a muffin recipe for carrot and Quinoa so I thought I would try it as a loaf instead with a few additions and tweaks.
Adams mom bought me loaf pans a few weeks back which I had been wanting to use and make a loaf to say thanks! She had gotten silicone pans which I had also not used before. They worked out great! The silicone made it easy to unmold and you also don’t need to butter it. They came in orange, blue and grey. I’m very lucky to get so many baking gifts! I’m going over to his parent’s house tonight for a get together so I thought I would bake this loaf today to bring. I even put together a little recipe card that Adam had bought me for my birthday for the loaf so she could try it out herself!
The house smelled delicious as it baked – it was tormenting me as I did the laundry and dishes. The aroma of Cinnamon always makes a house seem more comforting. Though baking in the heat of summer isn’t something I would like to be doing all day. I’ll have to take the dog out for a walk after this – she has been giving me that look all morning as I’ve been baking. the “please mom – please” look. She always wins, and she knows it. She’s very spoiled, but that’s because she’s my baby.
Back to the loaf -this is a perfect recipe to make as a gift for someone – simply wrap some parchment or wax paper around it and deliver it to someone who may need a little sweet pick me up!
Quinoa Carrot Loaf
- 1 2/4 cup whole wheat flour
- 1/2 cup all purpose flour
- 1/3 cup shredded coconut
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1 cup cooked quinoa*
- 1 cup shredded carrots
- 1/2 cup plain yogurt
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 2 Tbs. canola oil
- 1 tsp vanilla
* approx. 1/4 cup uncooked quinoa + 1/2 cup water. Boil, then cover and simmer for 12 minutes.
Pre-Heat oven to 350.
Peel carrots and shred them using KitchenAid shredder attachment, or handheld shredder. Set aside.
Boil and cook quinoa. Set aside.
In a medium sized mixing bowl, sift together dry ingredients.
In another bowl mix together eggs, carrots, yogurt, oil, vanilla and cooked quinoa.
Pour wet ingredients into dry mixture and mix until just moistened.
Spoon into prepared loaf pan, or muffin tin if you prefer.
Bake for 40-50 minutes, or until done. Insert a knife into the center to check, It should be completely set and just bounce back slightly when touched.
Allow to cool for 10-15 minutes in loaf pan before transferring to cooling rack. You can slice it, or wrap in parchment to deliver to a friend.
First off I’d like to wish my mom a Happy Birthday!! As I mentioned earlier, my mom has been away at the Dominican Republic for a week! And today is her Birthday! But she isn’t home til tomorrow, friday, missing her birthday! So I thought I would bake her a cake so she could have it when she gets home! A birthday isn’t a birthday without cake! Also, I’ve gotten my final grades back and was super happy to receive a B in Biology! So all that stressing, and even lack of baking paid off! So, I think I deserve a piece of cake too!
Ever since I made the Zucchini cake I’ve been wanting to make a carrot cake, mostly so I could use my shredder attachment again! But also, my mom loves carrot cake as well! I was originally going to make another one from the Joy of Cooking, but then compared the two and liked the additions of coconut to the cake, also it seemed to make more. So, from the book I got for my birthday last year, Dorie Greenspan’s Baking: From my home to yours, I decided to try out her Bill’s Big Carrot Cake. So far I’ve loved everyting I’ve baked from it, including the white out devils food cake, which I made for my brother’s birthday in March, which was de-licious!! So here’s the recipe for the carrot cake! It’s definitely a winner.
Bill’s Big Carrot Cake
From Baking: from my home to yours by Dorie Greenspan
Yields 10 servings
For the cake:
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- 3 cups grated carrots (about 9 carrots, you can grate them in food processor fitted with a shredding a blade or use a box grater, i used my KitchenAid with the shredding blade and baby carrots)
- 1 cup coarsely chopped walnuts or pecans
- 1 cup shredded coconut (sweetened or unsweetened)
- ½ cup moist, plump raisins
- 2 cups sugar
- 1 cup canola oil
- 4 large eggs
- *I also added about a cup of crushed & drained pineapple
Position the racks to divide the oven into thirds and preheat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. Butter three 9-x-2-inch round cake pans, flour the insides, and tap out the excess. Put the two pans on one baking sheet and one on another.
To make the cake:
- Whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. In another bowl, stir together the carrots, chopped nuts, coconut, and raisins.
- Working with a stand mixer, preferably fitted with a paddle attachment, or with a hand mixer in a large bowl, beat the sugar and oil together on a medium speed until smooth. Add the eggs one by one and continue to beat until the batter is even smoother. It will resemble custard or Jell-o at this point.
- Reduce the speed to low and add the flour mixture, mixing only until the dry ingredients disappear. Gently mix the chunky ingredients. Divide the batter among the baking pans.
- Bake for 40-50 minutes, rotating the pans from top to bottom and front to back at the midway point, until a thin knife inserted into the centers comes out clean. The cakes will have just started to come away from the sides of the pans. Transfer the cakes to cooling racks and cool for about 5 minutes, then run a knife around the sides of the cakes and unmold them. Invert and cool to room temperature right side up.
- The cakes can be wrapped airtight and kept at room temperature overnight or frozen for up to 2 months.
*I didn’t want to make three layers with the hastle of fitting them in the oven, so i made two larger layers and it worked out just as well. You could also make it into a sheet cake or even bake it in a bundt cake pan.
For the frosting:
- 8 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
- 1 stick ( 8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1 pound or 3 and ¾ cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice or ½ teaspoon pure lemon extract
- ½ cup shredded coconut (optional)
- Finely chopped toasted nuts and/or toasted shredded coconut (optional)
To make the frosting:
Working with a stand mixer, preferably fitted with a paddle attachment or with a hand mixer in a large bowl, beat the cream cheese and butter together until smooth and creamy. Gradually add the sugar and continue to beat until the frosting is velvety smooth. Beat in the lemon juice or extract. If you’d like coconut in the filling, scoop about half of the frosting and stir the coconut in.
*I toasted some coconut beforehand, and sprinkled it on top of the first layer in the middle of the cake.
To assemble the cake:
Put one layer top side up on a cardboard cake round or a cake plate protected by strips of wax or parchment paper. If you added the coconut to the frosting, use half of the coconut frosting to generously cover the first layer (or generously cover with plain frosting). Use an offset spatula or a spoon to smooth the frosting all the way to the edges of the layer. Top with the second layer, this time placing the cake stop side down, and frost with the remainder of the coconut frosting or plain frosting. Top with the last layer, right side up, and frost the top- and the sides- of the cake. Finish the top with swirls of frosting. If you want to top the cake with toasted nuts or coconut, sprinkle them on now while the frosting is soft. Refrigerate the cake for 30 minutes, just to set the frosting before serving.
This cake can be served as soon as the frosting is set. It can also wait, at room temperature and covered with a cake keeper overnight. The cake is best served in thick slices at room temperature and while it’s good plain, it’s even better with vanilla ice cream or some lemon curd.
Happy Birthday Mom! xox From Me & The animals