Thursday, August 16, 2012

Chewy Snack Loaf

Chewy Snack Loaf is not the original name of this "cake" -- it's actually
Tu bi'Shvat Cake, adapted by David Lebovitz from The Book of New Israeli Food by Janna Gur. I adapted it a step further and can't bring myself to call it a cake. It definitely makes a great mid-morning or mid-afternoon snack.

I used white whole wheat flour instead of all-purpose, used brown sugar instead of white (and a little less of it since the dried fruit adds enough sweetness), and chose dates, apricots, and cranberries for the dried fruit and walnuts, hazelnuts, slivered almonds, and a few pecans for the nuts.

Although David Lebovitz says in his blog that even he was skeptical about the extra long baking time (90 minutes!) but determined it was the correct time, I think I'll try a little bit shorter time when I make this again. For me, it seemed a bit too well-done ... but just on the very outside "crust"; the inner part tastes just right.

I'd love to hear how it turns out for others.

Chewy Snack Loaf
(adapted from David Lebovitz)

7 tbsp white whole wheat flour
5 tbsp brown sugar
3 large eggs
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
1/8 tsp ground cardamom
1/8 tsp ground cloves
1/8 tsp salt
1 1/2 cups dried fruit, chopped*
1 1/2 cups nuts, chopped and lightly toasted**

Preheat the oven to 300 degrees. Line a loaf pan with parchment paper.

Combine the flour, sugar, spices, and salt in a large bowl. Mix in the eggs, then the dried fruit and nuts.

Pour the mixture into the prepared loaf pan. Bake for 90 minutes.*** 

Let cool in the pan, then move to a cutting board and use a sharp knife to cut into 1/4-inch thick slices. It should keep for at least a week (wrapped or in an airtight container) at room temperature.

*Use any combination of dried fruit, such as cherries, cranberries, raisins, figs, apricots, etc. (I used dates, apricots, and cranberries)

**Use any combination of nuts (I used walnuts, hazelnuts, slivered almonds, and pecans)

***The original recipe calls for 90 minutes baking time. That proved a bit over-done on the outside crust for my loaf. I would suggest keeping an eye on the baking time.

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