One of the aspects of cooking I´ve been trying to investigate a bit more is the healthier side. No, I´m not giving up on butter, refined sugar, and all that´s good. I´m just trying to learn how to eat yummy things that are good for me and, as a bonus, tend to be nicer to my waistline (especially now that the Daring Bakers challenge is approaching.)
So yesterday I picked up a little bag of carob flour, which is used mainly to substitute for cocoa or chocolate (not that it has the same taste, mind you.) But I had tried a carob cake once and loved it, so I had high hopes.
But, here´s the catch, if you look up recipes online, follow them blindly and disregard your cooking instincts when they tell you that what you are about to put in the oven is going to taste like crap… well, you´ll end up with crap, that looks like this:
Yes, it´s pitch black, it didn´t rise properly and it tasted way too strong. It´s now safely resting in the garbage bin, thank you very much.
But I wasn´t willing to admit defeat just like that. I decided to invent a recipe on my own, with all the knowledge I had just received thanks to that monumental piece of awfulness.
I had this box of dates that needed using and I figured a bit of ginger would work nicely in there as well, so in they went, along with some changes that de-veganized the cake. Now, I still don´t love this cake madly, as it turned out more like a bread than a pudding, so next time I need to add some moisture in there, maybe using a mashed banana, some applesauce, plain yogurt, or maybe lowering the amount of finely ground whole wheat flour. But as it is, it works well with some cream cheese and blueberry marmalade (though mom liked it as it was, which I guess could happen if you aren´t expecting something too moist.)
So I´m calling this one carob flour bread until I figure out a way to make it moist and somewhat healthy at the same time. If you want to try the recipe, I´d advise adding a mashed banana, some applesauce or plain yogurt to the mix, and I´m sure chopped nuts would work well in terms of flavor.
And if any of you have any recipes or tips to share, I´d love to hear them!
Carob flour bread
Finely ground whole wheat flour, 2 cups
Carob flour, 1/2 cup
All-purpose flour, 1 cup
Baking powder, 2 teaspoons
Baking soda, 1 teaspoon
Black organic sugar, 1 1/2 cups (you can also use honey in a smaller quantity)
water, 2 cups (some recipes suggested fruit juices here, milk could also work)
corn oil, or any other neutral oil, 4 tablespoons
Fresh ginger, grated, 2 teaspoons
Allspice, 1/4 teaspoon
Vanilla extract, 1 teaspoon
Dates, chopped, 8 (they didn´t add much, so I´d omit them next time)
1. Mix the dry ingredients in a big bowl.
2. Add the eggs, the water, the corn oil and the spices and flavorings, using a whisk to prevent any lumping.
3. Pour in a buttered (or sprayed) loaf pan and bake in a preheated oven at a low temperature (300F, 150C) for around 60 minutes, until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.