Carrot-Coconut Snack Cake + Recipes for the Week of April 23, 2012

by Julie

I can’t believe we’re almost at the end of April. Then comes May, then June, and half of 2012 is already gone. I don’t know about you, but the thought sometimes causes my heart to start pounding: where does the time go?

This weekend came with a long list of to-dos. Halfway through, however, I realized that I needed a break. So Sunday morning, to prepare for the day, I made Carrot-Coconut Snack Cake, a delicious recipe I made up on the fly.

I wanted something that was healthy and nourishing, knowing that I’d be running around all day doing house projects or preparing for an upcoming writing class I’m taking on documentary poetics. (Fascinating, yes?) Don’t let the name of the cake fool you: it gets its sweetness from the raisins, coconut, only a 1/4 cup of maple syrup, and the carrots: that’s it. Add to that gluten-free oats and walnuts, and you’ve got a good thing that sticks with you throughout the morning and goes great with afternoon tea.

Carrot-Coconut Snack Cake

1/2 cup gluten-free oats

1/4 cup shredded coconut

3/4 cup gluten-free flour, like Bob’s Red Mill All-Purpose Mix

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup soy/almond milk

1 tablespoon chia seeds

1/4 cup maple syrup

1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 carrot shredded (about 1 cup)

3/4 cup packed raisins

2/3 cup coarsely chopped walnuts

1/2 cup coconut oil

To prepare:

Preheat oven to 350. Lightly grease a bread loaf pan with olive oil and set aside.

Blend oats and shredded coconut in a food processor until they form a coarse powder. In a large bowl, combine oats and coconut mixture with flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.

In a small mixing bowl, combine soy/almond milk with chia seeds. Let sit for 4 minutes, until seeds expand. Meanwhile, shred your carrot into a small bowl. Add chopped walnuts and raisins. Set aside and go back to your milk mixture: add coconut oil, vanilla, maple syrup, and vinegar and stir to combine. Gently add liquids to flour mixture, then fold in carrots, walnuts, and raisins.

Pour batter into bread loaf pan and bake for 55-60 minutes. Allow bread sit for ten minutes, remove cake from pan, and cool completely. Slice into bit-sized pieces and serve with jam.

E and I did take a break Sunday afternoon to get together with some friends to play ping-pong. They were kind enough to invite us over to start another project (curtains!) at their house, so we ended the day with a lovely, relaxing meal in their courtyard. It was the perfect mini vacation in the midst of a crazy couple of days.

Here’s to a lovely week.

Monday, April 23: Leek Miso Pesto Pizza (from Adrienneats)

Use a gluten-free crust to easily make this recipe gluten-free


For miso pesto

3 cups loosely packed basil (you can try cilantro or parsley, too)
1/3 cup walnuts
1 garlic clove, minced
1 teaspoon miso
juice of 1 lemon
2 tablespoon walnut oil
cracked pepper

For pizza

1 recipe gluten-free pizza dough
1/2 cup miso walnut pesto, recipe above
1.5 teaspoon olive oil 
2 leeks, rinsed thoroughly and sliced thin
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon cracked pepper
1/4 teaspoon red chili flakes
2 cups kale, rinsed and chiffonaded
3 garlic cloves, minced
6 asparagus stalks, rinsed and chopped small

Tuesday, April 24: Cantaloupe Salad with Pistachio-Lime Vinaigrette  (from Farmhouse Table)


1 large cantaloupe
1 head butter lettuce, washed and leaves separated
¼ cup microgreens
1 1/2 cup pistachios, coarsely chopped
1/3 cup fresh lime juice
1/3 cup honey
1/4 cup chopped purple onion
1 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
3/4 cup vegetable oil

Wednesday, April 25: Aubergines and Greens (from My New Roots)


4 large aubergines

plenty of fresh greens  (arugula, watercress, spinach, purslane)

olive oil

good finishing salt

fresh mint

liquid honey

3 tablespoons sesame seeds

pinch crushed chili flakes

1 lemon

Spicy Tahini Sauce (see recipe below)

Tahini Sauce

1/3 cup tahini

1 large clove garlic

1 ½ tablespoons freshly-squeezed lemon juice

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

¼ teaspoon crushed chili flakes (or to taste)

pinch of salt

1 teaspoon honey (or agave)

water to thin

Thursday, April 26: Green Quesadillas (repost)


1 ripe avocado

big handful of fresh cilantro, chopped

1 clove garlic, minced

juice of 1 lime

pinch cayenne

2 teaspoons olive oil

1 leek, white and light green parts thinly sliced

1/4 cup sliced red onion

coarse salt

1/2 cup cooked green lentils

4 corn or gluten-free tortillas