I use the term bread here loosely. Let's be honest. This is cake. Chocolate studded cake. But if we call it bread we can eat it for breakfast with a pat of butter. Mmmmm. Bread it is.
While cake for breakfast is a delightful way to start the day, it was not the impetus behind baking two loaves of this last night. Nope, it's because we're going skiing! In my mind skiing and quick breads are inextricably linked. Heading to the mountains demands provisions. Pack a few loaves of banana, zucchini, or pumpkin bread and nearly all your boxes are checked - it's breakfast, it's a snack, it's dessert, and it can even ride the chair lift. Voila.
Carrot bread is a new variation for me, but after how well this batch came out I doubt I'll be calling on the usual suspects anytime soon. Zucchini is out of season in the winter. Bananas - try as I might - I just don't like very much. And pumpkin gets too much play these days. (In all seriousness, the Pumpkin Spice Latte has 90,000 followers on Twitter). The true test will be whether any remnants survive the weekend. I'm banking on no leftovers so I can return to regularly scheduled programming at breakfast where it's obviously whole grains and yogurt everyday, and never, ever cake.
Carrot Chocolate Chunk Bread
This recipe is from The Fearless Baker by Emily Luchetti and Lisa Weiss. I stumbled upon it on NPR's Kitchen Window series when looking for a carrot bread that incorporates both pureed and grated carrots (most call only for grated). The addition of chocolate was my only modification.
Makes two 8 1/2-inch loaves (recipe could be easily cut in half to make only 1 loaf)
- 16 carrots
- 2 2/3 cups all purpose flour
- 2 tsp. baking soda
- 1/2 tsp. baking powder
- 2 tsp. salt
- 12 Tbs. (1 1/2 sticks) butter, at room temperature
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- 4 eggs, at room temperature
- 2/3 cup buttermilk
- 10 oz. good quality chocolate, roughly chopped (I used Mast Brothers Brooklyn Blend)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees
- Butter and flour two 8 1/2-inch loaf pans
- Peel all the carrots
- Take 6 carrots, chop into small rounds and cook in salted, boiling water until soft (about 10 minutes). Drain and puree in a blender or food processor.
- Grate the remaining 10 carrots and set aside
- In a small bowl use a whisk to combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt
- In a large bowl beat the butter and sugar together until smooth
- Stir eggs into the butter/sugar mixture one at time until combined
- Stir the buttermilk, pureed carrots, and grated carrots into the egg mixture
- Fold the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients
- Fold in the chopped chocolate
- Divide batter between the two pans and bake for 60-70 minutes (check for doneness by inserting a thin knife; bread is done when it comes out clean)
- Let cool for 15 minutes before removing from pans
- Let cool completely (if you can stand it) before slicing
- Store at room temperature wrapped in plastic; will keep for four days this way or freeze for up to two months