It’s Saturday again, and time for another Saturday brunch. I usually spend several days in eager anticipation, and when I woke up this morning, I decided to turn to my “Muffin Lady” cookbook for inspiration.
I love this paean to unpretentious, African-American influenced baking, but today I was struck by just how inconveniently American many of the recipes are. Cranberry loaf with fresh cranberries? Sounds fabulous. Too bad the closest thing I’ve seen around here is frozen currants. Blueberry muffins? Blueberries sell here for about 20 shekels per 100 grams, when you can even get them. Rhubarb loaf? Haven’t seen rhubarb here, either. Sigh.
I eventually settled on a crumb spice cake, but I couldn’t bring myself to make a breakfast bread with equal parts sugar and white flour. So I borrowed a bit from the muffin lady’s crumb topping, and made my own oatmeal batter to go underneath, sweetened with date honey. Now let’s see the muffin lady find date honey.
This cake is very filling, as all the whole grains produce a relatively heavy bread. We decided to slice our loaf into eight servings, but it turns out that while rich in protein and fiber, each slice packs a whopping 550 calories. If this concerns you, you can either cut the bread into 16 servings and serve it alongside yogurt for a complete meal, or forgo the crumb topping. We topped our servings with banana slices.
1 c flour
1 c brown sugar
2 oz (50 g) butter
1/2 t cinnamon
Mix together the dry ingredients for the batter, and mix in the liquids. Don’t be afraid to taste the batter as you go along — if it doesn’t taste good now, it won’t taste much better once it’s baked. Feel free to adjust the ingredients accordingly.
Make the crumb topping by blending all the ingredients in a blender until it looks, well, like crumbs.
Pour the batter into a 4-by-8 inch loaf pan, and top with the crumb topping. Bake at 190 degrees Celsius (375 degrees Fahrenheit) for 40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out dry. I covered my loaf with tinfoil about 15 minutes into the baking in order to keep it from burning on top.
Note: Obviously, if you can’t find date honey, known as silan here, regular honey or sugar will work just as well; the flavor will simply be slightly different.