Tag: pineapple

Carrot and Pineapple Muffins with Hazelnuts

Carrot Pineapple Muffin

The secret ingredient to my favourite carrot cake is puréed pineapple, it makes the batter nice and light and adds subtle fruitiness. Our cake-loving granny Doris from Florida introduced me to her little masterpiece when I visited her in the sunshine state for the first time a few years ago. Although it wasn’t the only treat she prepared for us – she’s a grandma after all, so she made sure that our plates were never (!) empty –  it was the one that struck me the most. I must have eaten the whole cake on my own, it’s addictive and I loved it! It’s made with sunflower oil instead of butter, which I’m usually not that fond of, but here it doesn’t disturb the flavours and makes a very nice and fluffy texture. Refined with my beloved cinnamon, it’s a fragrant cake that fits perfectly to a late Sunday breakfast in spring. The temperatures are far from springy here in Berlin so I need a bit of imagination, but never mind, my heart is already set on the next season.

So what works in a cake, also works in a muffin. It’s just quicker and easier to prepare and you can even skip the icing of the cake, which turns the whole thing into a richer treat (but if you’re up for it, you can find the recipe for my cream cheese icing in the link to the carrot cake). I often use canned pineapple in this recipe, drained and squeezed, I’m after sweetness so if you can’t find the freshest, juiciest, and sweetest fruit, go for the can. The amounts of the cake ingredients needed a few adjustments to turn into muffins but the results are actually quite similar: they have the same light texture, beautiful aroma, and I can’t stop eating the muffins either.

Carrot Pineapple Muffin

 

Carrot Pineapple Muffin

Carrot and Pineapple Muffins with Hazelnuts

Makes 12 muffins

plain flour 260g / 2 cups
granulated sugar 150g / 3/4 cup
baking powder 3 teaspoons
baking soda 1/2 teaspoon
fine sea salt 1/8 teaspoon
ground cinnamon 2 1/2 teaspoons
sunflower oil 120ml / 1/2 cup
pineapple (canned or fresh), drained and lightly squeezed (canned fruit), and puréed, 150g / 5 ounces
organic eggs 3
carrots, grated, 150g / 5 ounces
hazelnuts, chopped, 1 small handful, for the topping

paper baking cups 12

Set the oven to 180°C / 350°F (preferably convection setting) and line the 12 molds of a muffin tray with paper baking cups.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.

Whisk together the sunflower oil, puréed pineapple, and eggs.

Pour the pineapple-oil mixture along with the carrots into the bowl with the flour mixture and stir with a wooden spoon until you have a lumpy dough, with a bit of flour left here and there. Keep in mind, the more you mix it, the more it will lose its light texture. Divide the dough between the muffin cups and sprinkle with the chopped hazelnuts. Bake for about 20-22 minutes (slightly longer if using a conventional oven) or until the muffins are firm on top. Let them cool for 1-2 minutes before you take the muffins out of the tray.

You can keep the muffins in an airtight container for up to 2-3 days.

Carrot Pineapple Muffin

 

Carrot Pineapple Muffin

 

Carrot Pineapple Muffin

 

Carrot Pineapple Muffin

 

Carrot Pineapple Muffin

My favourite Carrot Cake from the Sunshine State

Carrot Cake

The recipe for this amazing carrot cake comes from the Sunshine State, more precisely from our Granny Doris in Florida who is also responsible for the best Peanut Butter Cookies. It’s unbelievably spongy and juicy, with lots of carrots, pineapples and Brazil nuts. This is the kind of cake you eat within a day without knowing where it went! It’s glazed with a deliciously creamy icing made of cream cheese and lemon, it combines everything a great carrot cake needs.

When I visited Doris for the first time in Florida, my partner’s grandmother knew exactly how to make me feel at home: she welcomed us with a table full of cakes, brownies and muffins. We started every day with a luscious breakfast, with pancakes, bacon and all kinds of sweet treats, so, unfortunately, the holiday ended with 10 pounds more on the scales (although I went jogging almost every morning!). I felt no regrets, our daily feasting was worth it, I have a sweet tooth so I was in heaven. Of all the nice food we enjoyed, Doris’ carrot cake impressed me the most. I asked for the recipe which she happily handed over and I knew this would be a keeper. Since our visit to the Sunshine State, I bake it every couple months and it never lasts long.

Carrot Cake

 

Carrot Cake

 Carrot Cake

Note from 27th March 2015:
I changed the recipe for the icing a little, you can find the old recipe at the end, the pictures show the new icing which is thicker and more creamy.

For a 23cm /  9″ bundt pan you need

plain flour 300g / 10.5 ounces
sugar 200g / 7 ounces
baking powder 3 teaspoons
baking soda 1 1/2 teaspoons
salt 3/4 teaspoon
cinnamon 3 teaspoons
sunflower oil 250ml
organic eggs 4
carrots, grated 150g / 5.5 ounces
canned pineapple, drained and crushed, 250ml
Brazil nuts, chopped, 50g / 2 ounces
butter, for the bundt pan
breadcrumbs, for the bundt pan

For the icing
butter, soft, 3 tablespoons
cream cheese 100g / 3.5 ounces
heavy cream
icing sugar 125g / 4.5 ounces
lemon juice 1 tablespoon
a pinch of salt

Set the oven to 180°C / 355°F (fan-assisted oven), butter the bundt pan and sprinkle with breadcrumbs.

Combine the dry ingredients in a large bowl. Add the oil and eggs and mix for a couple minutes. Stir in the carrots, pineapple and nuts and continue mixing until combined. Scrape the dough into the prepared pan and bake for 45 minutes or until golden. Check with a skewer, it should come out clean. Let the cake cool for 10 minutes before you flip it around (I put the pan in a kitchen sink of cold water for a few minutes, that makes it easier to take the cake out).

For the icing, beat the butter for 1-2 minutes until light and fluffy, add the cream cheese and a splash of heavy cream and continue mixing. Add more heavy cream until the mixture resembles a creamy yoghurt. Add the lemon juice, icing sugar and salt and continue mixing until well combined, the frosting should be thick and slightly runny. Pour the icing over the cake.

The old icing recipe

icing sugar 125g / 4.5 ounces
sour cream 100g / 3.5 ounces
cream cheese 1 tablespoon
butter, soft, 3 tablespoons plus more if you want the icing to be more stiff
lemon juice 1 tablespoon
a pinch of salt

Carrot Cake

 

Carrot Cake

 

Carrot Cake

 

carrotcake11

 

carrotcake10