Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Raisin Bran Muffin Cake

These days most muffins are really cake. This is a cake that's really a muffin! I bake it in my cast iron Lodge Bundt Cake pan. I also call it travel cake because it is the perfect thing to take traveling by car, train or bicycle! It stays moist and it's wholesome providing vitamins and energy without being too sweet. In fact the only sweetness is from the raisins and carrots. Once in a while I add semi sweet chocolate chips. The only fats are from the eggs and the peanut butter and the occasional semi sweet chocolate chips. You can exchange any number of fruits or vegetables for the main body of the cake. I have used bananas, pumpkin, applesauce, chopped apples, zucchini, prunes, grated carrots. Anything is possible. Just mix it all the ingredients together in a big bowl. Or if you are feeling crazy like me, mix with it all with your hands! Taste the batter and make adjustments that suit you. Beware that the bran does taste bitter before it is baked but other than that the flavors reflect what will become the final product. The peanut butter makes this cake taste EARTHY like delicious dirt.

Mix all ingredients in a big bowl and then stir it up!
2-3 eggs depending on how large.
two teaspoons of vanilla or almond extract (optional)
2 cups of home made unsweetened applesauce or grated carrots or two or three ripe bananas or two cups of pumpkin or zucchini. (you can even use combinations)
1-2 cups of raisins
3/4 to a cup of salted smooth or crunchy natural peanut butter
sunflower seeds (optional)
2 and 1/2 to three cups whole wheat flour
1 cup of wheat bran (can mix with rolled oats and cornmeal if you wish)
2 teaspoons cinnamon (optional)
2 teaspoons powdered ginger (optional)
sprinkles of ground cloves or ground cardamom (optional)
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt

If you need to moisten the batter add vegetable stock or yogurt, milk, or orange or apple juice. It should be gloppy but not too soupy, like spoon bread batter.

Grease cast iron Bundt pan (or pan of your choice) with Crisco and preheat oven to 425. You can also bake it at 350 but I prefer hotter! I heat up my pan and pour batter into hot cast iron. Be careful of the hot pan, have your pot holders handy. Bake for an hour. Let cool for 15 minutes then poke the edges with a sharp knife and turn out onto a cutting board and place on a rack to cool. I like to keep mine displayed on glass pedestal cake dish with a glass see through cover. It's healthy and delicious excellent with tea or coffee. Your family and friends will love it.
Enjoy! Eat and dance a polka!