Apple-Carrot Harvest Bread

Hello, friends! Happy Tuesday. Sorry for the prolonged silence – remember when I said that summer made a triumphant return to Wisconsin? Well, this weekend things really got crazy – the temperature soared into the low 80s and quite possibly shattered a record or two. So, needless to say, I made sure to get outside and soak up some rays. Gotta stock up on enough vitamin D to get me through the dark days of a Wisconsin winter!

However, the high temps don’t negate the fact that it is, quite obviously, still autumn. Ochre and burnt rust colors dominate the skyline; most of the trees around here have changed already. It’s quite sensorily confusing to feel summer-hot while hearing brittle eaves crunch underfoot and seeing yellows and oranges and reds. These autumnal colors are also prevalent in my food lately, because I haven’t given up on autumn-inspired meals and ingredients. Carrots and apples and pumpkins, oh my! Inspired by a bounty of freshly-picked apples and the beautiful, bright carrots from my latest CSA share, I came up with a perfectly autumnal recipe:

 

Autumn in bread form?

Apple-Carrot Harvest Bread
Ingredients:
2 medium-sized apples, grated
2 carrots, grated
1 flax egg (1 T ground flax + 3 T warm water)
2 T oil
3 T applesauce
1/2 t vanilla
2/3 C rice milk (or other non-dairy milk of choice)
1/3 C vegan cane sugar
1 1/2 C flour
1/2 C whole wheat flour
2 t cinnamon
1/8 t cloves
1/4 t nutmeg
1/4 t salt
dash ginger
3/4 t baking soda

Preheat your oven to 350˚F and lightly grease or spray a loaf pan.

In a medium bowl, whisk the water and ground flax to create your flax egg. This is a great time to grate the carrots and apples. Next, add the oil, applesauce, milk, vanilla, and sugar to the flax egg. Whisk until well-mixed. In a large bowl, sift the remaining dry ingredients together. Then add the wet ingredients to the dry, mixing until just incorporated – be careful not to overmix! Fold in the grated carrots and apples, pour the batter into your loaf pan, and pop that baby in the oven.

I baked mine for probably 45 – 50 minutes, and it was just a little bit under-done in the middle. I recommend keeping it in for longer – just wait until a toothpick or thin knife inserted in the center comes out totally clean. Remove from oven, let cool, and enjoy! You now have a slightly dense, very flavorful, and quite healthy quick bread, perfect for enjoying with a mug of tea and a good book on a cool afternoon.

…not that I’ve had any of those recently. :)

Hey, don’t leave yet! You still have one more day to enter my giveaway! I’ll choose a winner tomorrow night at 9:00 CST (not 7:00 as previously mentioned… I’ll be in class then!). So get on it!

Attack of the Mutant Zucchini [Bread] of Doom!

Fact: Desserts baked during eXtreme weather are eXtremely good (though maybe everything tastes delicious when you’re just glad to be alive).

Last Thursday, in the midst of tornado warnings, torrential downpours, and freakishly-colored skies, did I hunker down in my building’s basement like a smart person would? If you guessed “absolutely not,” you are correct – instead, I ignored the tornado sirens and baked me up some zucchini bread. I needed to use up the obscenely large zucchinis from my garden, and teh interwebz led me to this scrumptious-looking specimen of a recipe. Despite my way-too-late realizations that 1.) my applesauce was moldy, 2.) the recipe was for 2 loaves, when really I only wanted one, and 3.) I used spaghetti squash for about half the zucchini amount, my oven spewed forth some of the most moist and delicious zucchini bread I’ve had in recent memory.

Eat me up, Scotty!

Okay, I’m gonna say that again – I used spaghetti squash in place of zucchini. And… it wasn’t really on purpose. Yeah, I know. See, I planted some spaghetti squash seeds earlier this year, but only one plant survived the transfer from its cozy potted home to the rough wilds of Wisconsin soil. But then I thought it died because I only saw zucchini growing in the area where I’d planted the spaghetti squash. Except… they weren’t regular zucchini. They were large and spherical, but with the exact same mottling as a regular ol’ zucchini. Instead of accepting the logical solution – that they were immature spaghetti squash from the plant that survived – I instead decided that they were mutant zucchinis, the perfect accompaniment to my monstrously large real-zucchinis. But they weren’t, as I discovered when I hacked one open in search of more zucchini flesh for my bread. Nope, they were straight-up spaghetti squash, just a little green on the outside. Durrr.

I just went with it, though, and guess what? You’d never guess that an imposter is hiding in the loaf or amongst the giant muffins. Nah, it’s all just one smooth, slightly spicy, moist and delicious loaf of yum.

And that, my friends, is the way I like it. :)