It is no secret, that carrots are great for baking, as well as several other produce like zucchini, beets, sweet potato and such. When I say “I am going to bake a carrot…” you will immediately will answer “cake”. Right? Wrong. This post is for the neglected one, the one that stands in the shadow of the carrot cake and the carrot muffins. The Carrot Bread.
I had some carrots just begging me to turn them into something baked, but I wanted to stay away from the frosting. There’s just so much frosting you can take for a couple of weeks. I’ve been in and out of birthdays, baking and frosting cakes… so no. No frosting.
Browsing online, I found this version of Carrot Bread by Mark Bittman, and since I wanted to bake a quick bread (no yeast, since I didn’t have any) it was perfect. I have to confess that I misread the recipe. I added only ½ a teaspoon of baking powder, when the original recipe calls for 1 ½ teaspoons. Still the bread came out just fine. I also replaced the orange zest with orange juice, and added a dash of both nutmeg and cinnamon.
I baked two loaves, so I took one next door to my aunt and uncle the next day. I was very pleased when I went to visit them the next day to find out there was only one serving left! It’s good. And if you’re wondering what my dad said about the bread? He liked it! Of course, he would rather have me bake my grandma’s 4-Minute Cake, but he still liked it! A small victory in my book. This bread keeps best up to 3-4 days, after that it starts to dry out.
Carrot Bread with Almonds
Adapted from Mark Bittman
Makes: 1 loaf 9×5-inches or 2 loaves 7×3-inches
4 tablespoons cold butter
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup brown sugar
½ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
¾ cup whole milk
1 tablespoon orange juice
1 ½ cups grated carrots
½ cup sliced almonds
1 tablespoon of brown sugar for sprinkling
dash of nutmeg
dash of cinnamon
- Heat the oven to 35o°F. Grease a 9×5-inch loaf pan with butter, or use two 7×3-inch loaf pans.
- Combine the dry ingredients (except the brown sugar for sprinkling, nutmeg and cinnamon) and mix with a whisk.
- Cut the butter into bits, then use a pastry cutter (like I did), a fork or your fingers to cut or rub it into the dry ingredients until there are no pieces bigger than small peas.
- In a separate bowl, beat together the milk, juice and egg. Pour into the dry ingredients, combining just enough to moisten with a spatula. Do not over mix.
- Fold in the grated carrots and almonds, then spoon the batter into the loaf pan.
- If you are baking one loaf, bake for about an hour, or until the bread is golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. If you’re baking two smaller loaves, bake for 45 minutes. Check if it’s baked through with a cake tester or a toothpick.
- Cool on a rack for 15 minutes before removing from loaf pan.
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