Carrot “Cake” Muffins

20 Feb

What goes well with a potato-indulgence month? Healthy Carrot muffins! I had some carrots leftover from god knows what, so I decided to make some hearty muffins from the ever “feel good about what you’re putting into your body” site Green Kitchen Stories

{ Green Kitchen Stories – A Healthier Carrot Cake }

Now Entering Flavor Country

This goes back to an old trick I learned in my “earlier” days of this blog: using a date and banana mixture to replace (most of the) oil, and (all of the) sugar. As I’ve mentioned before, I’m not too uptight about sugar, fat, gluten, and the like, but if it’s a delicious no-brainer substitute like this, well hey, I’m all for it! This particular recipe calls for dynamite ingredients: coconut, raisins, dates, walnuts, bananas, spices, carrots…

Carrotss

I decided to make these into little “on the go because who has time to take out a knife and CUT something for ingestion?” muffins. And besides trying to navigate my way though the Plum Market bulk section in a dignified manner (read: trying to eyeball 1/2 C of walnuts while also calculating how much of a lb it is going to cost me)  the most time consuming part of this shredding the carrots. Well that, and making the banana-date mixture:

Paste

But in it’s defense, all it took was re-hydrating the dates (sidenote: the recipe calls for 15 fresh dates, which I did the first time, at a tune of $6.99 for a lb. of fresh dates, that 80% ended up going into the trash since they had grown a thick beard of flies. Since then I always go to the handy bulk section and get dried dates, and just let them soak in hot water for at least 10 minutes…but usually like 2 hours because I am forgetful), tossing them into the food processor with some bananas, and pushing a button. Yes, the rest of the recipe is literally that easy. However, I just HAD to make my own obstacle via cinnamon sticks. I refused to purchase ground cinnamon since I has a perfectly good “vile” of cinnamon sticks, and a coffee grinder. However, no matter how long you grind, that stick does not quite turn into powder…especially when you’re impatient like me, and stop grinding after about 20 seconds…leaving chunks that are bigger than cous cous, yet smaller than rice. But I’ll explain more about the cinnamon later.

Mix1

Mix everything together. Bake.

Muffins1

I love these muffins. They’re good for breakfast, a snack, dessert, hell, you could probably soak them in rum and have yourself an interesting evening. The recipe calls for a cream cheese glaze, I opted out as to  make for a cleaner snack. Now, back to that cinnamon. You know what’s not good? Biting into chunks of bark while trying to eat a baked good. It’s so ungood that I had to start picking them out before I tried to eat them. It didn’t really bother John (but then again it was an edible sweet item), so I suppose the cheese stands alone. However, everything else about these little darlings are superb.

{ Green Kitchen Stories – A Healthier Carrot Cake }

  • 3 eggs
  • 1-2 bananas
  • 10-15 fresh dates (without seeds)
  • 6 tbsp sunflower oil
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 ½ tsp baking powder
  • 3 tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tsp nutmeg
  • ½ tsp cardamom
  • 3-4 carrots (medium size, grated)
  • ½ cup coconut flakes
  • ½ cup walnuts (roughly chopped)
  • 1/2 cup raisins

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Whisk the eggs in a medium sized bowl. Use a hand blender or a blender to mix bananas, dates and oil into a thick cream in another bowl. Sift together flour, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg and cardamom and stir it together with the eggs and the banana-cream. Add grated carrots, coconut flakes, walnuts and raisins and stir it until it all comes together.
Pour it into a cake pan and bake for about 40 minutes. Try to stick a toothpick in the centre of the cake, when nothing sticks on it the cake is ready. Let it cool.
Whip together the cream cheese and the honey (bananas or dates would probably also work as sweeteners for the frosting). Add the frosting when the cake is completely cooled of. Serve with roughly chopped hazelnuts or walnuts on the top.

Muffins

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3 Responses to “Carrot “Cake” Muffins”

  1. eschof2 February 20, 2013 at 6:26 pm #

    These look delicious! Carrot cake can me messy when your ‘on the run.’ These solve that problem… Can’t wait to try them.

  2. MuffMom February 20, 2013 at 9:53 pm #

    Oh, these look perfect. My biggest grip about bakery carrot cakes is that they are always made sans raisins and pecans (perhaps to appease picker types who don’t like texture in their baked goods?), so this is exactly what I’ve been wanting!!! 🙂

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