Use it all: the carrots may thank you

Posted by on 06.21.10 | 3 Comments
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So today I went to make carrot ginger soup for a summer solstice gathering this evening…and I found a huge bag of organic carrots in the back of the refrigerator vegetable drawer. They were hairy, if you know what I mean. I was horrified at my lack of awareness of their being there and being in such a sad state.

Along with some squash, an apple and some onions, I used several of the neglected carrots for the soup, doing the detested peeling. Detested because so many of the nutrients are found near the skin of the vegetables, not because of the peeling process, which I actually like to do. And then I realized there were about 10 pounds of carrots still left in the bag. Dismayed, I ruminated about what to do with these bastions of stored energy. And then I remembered: my juicer!

I haven’t used the juicer since I moved into my home five years ago. It was stuck away in the back of an upper cupboard only reached with a step-stool. I got it out, dusted it off and decided to make some carrot juice. I scrubbed the carrots but didn’t peel them. Chopped off the ends and bad spots, put these pieces in the composter and started to stuff the carrots in the juicer. The motor complained from rheumatism, but it got warmed up. Got through all the carrots and made a quart of beautifully colored frothy carrot juice. And then I looked at the waste product of the juicing—about 9.5 lbs of mangled carrot offal.

Fifteen years ago or so when I bought the juicer this amount of carrot by-product wouldn’t have bothered me at all and I would have dumped it in the trash without a thought. Now it does bother me. What to do with it, what to do with it. I know, I’ll make carrot bread and muffins. I’m trying to go gluten free. Do I have the necessary spelt and rice flour? YES! Do I have coconut oil, raisins, agave sweetener? YES! I looked up gluten free carrot bread on one of my favorite sites: Gluten-a-go-go. It was too complicated and didn’t use enough of the carrot mash. So I just started making up a recipe.

Those of you who know me won’t be surprised at this. It’s my M.O. Can’t usually stick to a recipe for the life of me. And by now I was determined to use every piece of those carrots—just for the practice of it.

As I write this I’m eating one of the delicious muffins warm out of the oven with melted ghee. So I guess it’s safe to put this recipe, if you can call it that, out on the ‘net.

Oven at 375 or 400, whichever works for you.

Combine the dry ingredients in a large bowl

  • 2 cups of spelt flour
  • 1.5 cups of rice flour
  • 2 T of baking powder
  • 1 tsp of baking soda
  • 1 T of good quality salt
  • 1 T of cinnamon
  • 1 tsp of ginger powder
  • 1/2 tsp of nutmeg
  • 1/2 cup of dried (not sweetened) coconut flakes
  • 1 cup of organic raisins or craisins
  • And the crowning glory: 3 cups of carrot mash!

Combine the wet ingredients in another bowl

  • 1 cup of agave sweetener or local honey
  • 5 local eggs from chickens that you know and love
  • 2 T of coconut oil
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup of soy, rice or goat milk (cow if you need to)

Ok, now the fun part: put the two ingredient mixtures together, insert your hands and mix! (It will be hard to mix with anything but your hands, plus it feels great!) Add a little milk if you need to, or a little flour if it’s too soupy. Taste the batter for sweetness. Prepare the baking pans with coconut oil. This batch made 2 loaves plus 6 large muffins. I am cooking the loaves in a pan of water as honey mixtures sometimes burn easily. Cooked the muffins for about 25 minutes on 375. I’m not sure how long the loaves will need, but I’m checking them every 10 minutes.

I feel good that I wasted nothing about these carrots but their ends and they actually went in the compost and will be food for the red worms. I have a quart of carrot juice in my fridge that I’ll drink in small doses over the next few days. I have carrot ginger coconut soup cooking in the crock pot to share with my sweet community. The carrot muffins are heavenly, and I’m sure the bread will be as well. I think the carrots enjoyed my honoring of their gift of life, or at least I imagine that they do. This afternoon’s cooking, intersperced with gardening and a nap, felt like a very powerful prayer. Or…maybe I’m just feeling righteous. Maybe it’s both.

Don’t know why I wrote this all down. Maybe you do?




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