Happy Birthday Blog! One year ago on May 6th, I was having breakfast (Baked eggs in sauteed greens to be precise) in my sunny kitchen in Brazil and said “Screw it. I’m a-starting a food blog man!”. I was terrified to fall flat on my face and have people post awful comments on my page, but I was also feeling so jealous of all the food bloggers I was following. They seemed to be having so much fun. I wanted in on that. I was already cooking so much on a daily basis and wanted to channel that into something that could also involve writing and photography which I also enjoy a lot as hobbies. I of course did not know what managing a food blog actually entailed and had no idea how addictive food blogging was about to become. It really became a true passion and pushed me to improve my cooking skills every day a little more. For the first six months, I was photographing everything I cooked and ate. Even if it looked like meat loaf gone bad. I published recipes three times a week and tracked several times a day how many visitors the blog was getting or how many new facebook likes I could score. I still do that by the way so go like the facebook page here :)
And then soon enough real life came along. Graduating, looking for a job, actually getting a job… I hate that I can’t invest as much time in the blog as I could when I started it, and I really do miss networking with other bloggers the way I used to. Now from 3 posts a week I have gone to about one post every two or three weeks, on average. I still love populating the blog with recipes, and I still put my heart in soul into whatever I cook, but time constraints and work obligations have made me put it a little more on hold than I’d like to. In any case, I hope that you can still enjoy the recipes that I post here. Still gluten-free, still paleo, still soulful. Like these carrot cake muffins. Definitely a mouthful of pure love. I’ve made these both in cake and muffin form. They never disappoint. All they are missing today is a one year birthday candle.
Carrot Cake Muffins
Yields 12 muffins
1 1/2 cup (165g) Almond Flour
1 cup (100g) desiccated, unsweetened coconut
4 Eggs, room temperature
3/4 cup (175 ml) Maple Syrup (or Honey)
6 Dates, pitted and soaked
4 medium Carrots, peeled and finely grated (should yield 2 cups)
1 Apple (Fuji or Gala), peeled, cored and finely chopped
6 Tbsp Coconut Oil, melted
1/4 cup (45g) Golden Raisins
1/4 cup (30g) Walnuts, chopped
1 tsp Ground Cloves
1 tsp Ground Cinnamon
1/2 tsp Ground Nutmeg
1 tsp Baking Soda
1 tsp Vanilla Extract
Pinch of Salt
1. Preheat oven to 350°F and soak the dates in warm water for 30 minutes.
2. Grate the carrots in a large mixing bowl.
3. Peel, core and chop the apple into very small cubes. Add to the carrots.
4. Combine the almond flour, desiccated coconut, cloves, cinnamon, baking soda and salt in a separate bowl. Add to the carrots and apple and mix with your hands, lightly squeezing the carrots and apple pieces between your hands to release some moisture, until the ingredients start holding together.
5. In a blender or using a hand mixer, blend the maple syrup, vanilla, soaked dates (soaking water discarded), coconut oil and eggs (make sure they are room temperature otherwise coconut oil will harden). Add to the rest of the ingredients and stir with a spatula until batter is fully combined. Finally, stir in the raisins and walnuts.
6. Divide the batter evenly into individual muffin silicone molds (or a greased muffin tin) and bake for 25 minutes. Baking times often vary depending on your oven, so check that they are done by inserting the tip of a knife in the center and seeing if it comes out clean.
Notes: I also use this recipe to make 1 large carrot cake. Bake for 55-60 minutes.