The Weekend Kitchen

Some hits, some misses…..in my kitchen, over the weekends


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Loafing Apples

“Is there anything to eat?” asks the almost 14 year old as I open the door at noon. He is back from exams.

“Lunch is on the table.”

“What is there to eat?” the question is repeated after less than an hour.

“You should have eaten all your lunch.”

“But amma, rice is so unexciting.”

“There are some apples in the fridge. Go have one.”

“Amma!” an exasperated cry and he is off.

“What is it that you want?” I ask, when the same question comes my way in the next half an hour.

“Brownies,” there is a naughty grin on his face, the kind when he asks for something that he is sure not to get easily.

“Brownies to curb your hunger? You must be kidding!” the indignant mother in me answers.

I know this can’t go on for long. So the puny brain gets racked and the idea of a healthy concoction forms. If it works, well and good. If not, can dunk some milkmaid and make a pudding. Smart, isn’t it?

So these went in:

1  cup whole wheat flour

1/2 cup quick cooking oats (ground in a moxie for 1-2 minutes)

3/4 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp salt

1 tsp powdered cinnamon

1/2 tsp each powdered nutmeg and dry ginger powder (optional)

1/2 cup grated jaggery

1/2 cup olive oil (you could use sunflower oil instead)

1/2 cup curd

2 eggs

1/2 tsp vanilla

2 cups diced apples (skin on , small pieces)

1/4 cup sunflower & flaxseeds (optional. You could use any seeds of your choice)

a handful of crushed almonds for topping

Directions

Sift together the flours, baking soda, spices and salt. Beat the jaggery, oil and curd till well blended. Add eggs one after the other. Beat well after each addition. Add the vanilla essence.

Add the flour mix in three parts. Beat on low for 1 minute after each addition. Add the apple pieces and seeds. Blend in with a spatula till just mixed. Transfer to a well buttered  loaf pan. Sprinkle the almonds on top. The nutty flavour once it is well toasted is something else.

Bake at 180 C for 50- 55 minutes.

Test whether done by inserting a tooth pick at 50 minutes. If it comes out clean, remove the pan from the oven. Cool for 10 minutes and invert the loaf onto a cooling rack.

Note: The apples are normally peeled while making loafs or cakes. Thought I’ll try with skin on this time. Turned out perfect.

And son gobbled it up. Proof of the pudding 🙂

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Necessity, the mother of Carrot Apple Cake :)

A post, first time in four months. Better than waiting for one whole year, eh? Says a lot about the lazy cook 🙂

The laziness stops at writing, let me assure you. Cooking and eating has been continuing, unabated. Baking too.

I’ve never been a fan of dressed up cakes. Yes I do admire them, from afar. Maybe it is the envy factor. Neither talent, nor patience my vices, you see. And off late the guilt bug has started biting as well. Too much butter, ugh! Maida, oh no! Sugar, the killer! So goes the soliloquies inside my head. And then, the eternal search for the easy way out. There are a few such easy recipes that I know by heart now, this carrot cake is one such. People who’ve never had carrot cakes before have approached this in apprehension and instantly fallen in love. Perfect texture, moist to the core, the cakes melts in your mouth as you enjoy the crunch of the occasional walnut piece.

Baking has become therapeutic and the carrot cake is almost a ritual. Having started the habit of gifting home made goodies, when Uma suggested we meet up, this was the first dish that I wanted to make. Opened the fridge to find three carrots inside and the recipe asked for three cups of grated carrots. The optimistic in me never gives up, but there is a limit to which the puny carrots could extend themselves. They stopped at two cups. The next raided three apples and inspiration hit. Why not add one cup apples instead of carrots? And whole wheat instead of white? And less sugar? The hands acted in accordance with the mind and thus was born the ‘Carrot Apple Cake’. Best relished the next day

carrot

 

Ingredients

flour – 1 cup

whole wheat flour -3/4cup

baking soda – 2 tsp

baking powder – 2 tsp

cinnamon – 3 tsp

nutmeg – 1/2 tsp

brown sugar – 1 cup

eggs – 4

oil – 1 and 1/4 cups ( used sunflower oil for the cake in picture)

Vanilla – 2 tsp

grated carrot – 2 cups

grated apple – 1 cup

nuts – 1/2 cup 

raisins – 1/2 cup

Method

mix all the dry ingredients except sugar

beat together oil and sugar

add eggs one by one, beat for half a minute after each addition

add vanilla

gently fold in the dry ingredients in 2-3 batches

beat at low speed for about a minute

gently fold in the grated carrots and apples

add nuts nd raisins

bake at 175 C for 45 – 50 minutes