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Recipes | Whole-wheat Bread & Mini Date Ring-Cakes – Travel to Reconnect with our Roots

6 January 2014 8 Comments

wholewheat bread and date mini cakes.

Stop. Take a deep breath. And walk, fly or catch a train away from the city and into a world where the average pace of life is slower than slow. “It is not down in any map, true places never are”  ~Herman Melville. 

Five years of Food blogging has completely changed the way I thought my life will take me few years back. Life now, is fast paced and hectic than ever. And so are my endless ‘to-do‘ lists and ever growing goals year after year.

Though getting engaged in some creative work or the other makes me happier, but at times I do miss my evening leisure-walks on terrace and relaxing in my balcony with a cup of tea.

I was feeling the work-pressure creeping on me for quite some time, making me unfocused. 

Hmm…I need a break, a relaxing vacation with my family. A vacation with your loved ones is a perfect way to give your mind and body a much needed break.

Yes, its time to slow down the pace of life, forget cell phones, turn off the computer and disconnect with online media to get more focused and to enjoy the small moments in life.

And that is what exactly we did, during the year end winter holidays. As always, this vacation was also unplanned and we could not book tickets for our trip on time.

That is when hubby suggested we drive down ourselves and explore something different this vacation.

A close family friend of hubby who hails from Kanadukathan suggested we make a trip to this lesser known town of South India.

He also ensured that the rich heritage of Chettinadu palaces, simplicity of rural villages and many ancient temples surrounding the town will mesmerize us.

Not a bad idea, after-all travel to rural places could be a great way to reconnect with our roots.” I put forward my views to my hubby, who was all ears and nodded back with a positive smile.

So, with the strong urge to reconnect with history and to explore the hidden treasures of South India we started our trip on a weekend.

travel trails in India, kanadukathan

We have been traveling to various hill stations and wild life sanctuaries of India and decided upon visiting historical places and some ancient temples this time.

I was slightly skeptical when we planned for this trip, as to how my children would like it.

But to our surprise they thoroughly enjoyed the entire trip.

And as we planned to take our car, we had the luxury of traveling at our own pace and I stocked as much as edibles as I could, much to the chagrin of my hubby.

travel trails in India, kanadukathan

I was completely floored by these decade old palatial mansions and the intricate art work done in most of the individual houses of Chettiars, a business community from South India. Most of which now wear a deserted look with their inmates moving to other cities for better livelihood. 

travel trails in India, kanadukathan

I baked a wholewheat banana bread, 20 Oats granola bars and some mini Date ring cakes for the trip. I wrapped the loaf in aluminum foil and served the slices with homemade plum preserve. 

1. Wholewheat Banana Qucik Bread

Eggless wholewheat bread and mini date cakes

Ingredients; (makes one large loaf )

  • 1 cups whole wheat flour
  • 11/2 cups mashed banana
  • 1/2 cup Oats
  • 1/3 cup Orange juice
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 3 tbsp. oil
  • 1 tsp. apple cider vinegar
  • 3 tbsp. chocolate chips
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp. baking soda
  • A pinch of salt

Eggless wholewheat bread and mini date cakes

Method; Preheat oven to 180°C and grease a bread loaf with oil. Combine wheat flour, quick cooking Oats, baking soda, baking powder, salt and chocolate chips in a large bowl and mix well.

In another bowl add mashed banana, oil, honey, milk, cider vinegar, orange juice (I used sweet lime juice) and combine well.

Eggless wholewheat bread and mini date cakes

Make a well in the dry ingredients and pour the wet ingredients in it. Mix until just combined.

Pour the batter in the greased baking tin and bake for about 40 minutes or till done.

Eggless wholewheat bread and mini date cakes

Take out the baking tray and let it cool slightly. Invert the loaf on a board and slice it thinly.

Eggless wholewheat bread and mini date cakes

Serve the wholewheat banana loaf with butter or any fruit preserve.

Eggless wholewheat bread and mini date cakes

2. Mini Chocolaty Date Ring-Cakes

Eggless wholewheat bread and mini date cakes

Ingredients; (makes 10-12 mini ring-cakes)

  • 1 cup wholewheat flour
  • 20 Dates
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 2 tbsp. cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp. baking powder

Eggless wholewheat bread and mini date cakes

Method; preheat oven at 180°C and grease mini   donut moulds or pans. Remove seeds from all the dates.

Bring milk to boil and soak de-seeded Dates in it for 10 minutes.

Blend milk, soaked Dates and sugar to make a smooth puree.

Combine flour, cocoa powder and baking powder in a large bowl.

Make a well in the center of flour mix and pour the Date puree in it.

Eggless wholewheat bread and mini date cakes

Gently fold in all the ingredients to mix with a spatula. Pour the batter in the mini donuts moulds and bake for 15-20 minutes or till done.  Notes;

  1. The whole-wheat bread is a quick bread as it does not use yeast as the leavening agent and needs no standing time for proofing.
  2. You can replace honey with sugar in the bread if you wish. Just make sure you add a few spoons of liquid (milk/water) for right consistency.
  3. Use good quality Dates (khajoor) which are juicy and soft for making the mini ring cakes.
  4. The same batter of Date mini cakes can be used to bake cake or muffins.

Recipes | Whole-wheat Bread & Mini Dates Ring-Cakes -

The responsibility to preserve and maintain the treasures from the past lies on our shoulders. The inherent beauty of these villages and simplicity of rural life is one of the most valuable assets that we can gift to our children.

Travelling to rural places is a great way to reconnect with your roots. Hope the rich cultural heritage of India remains intact in times to come.

If you are in a mood to explore offbeat rural destinations of India, check out the following posts on my other blog;

  1. Tiruchirappalli – A strong urge to reconnect with history 
  2. Kanadukathan – Where art, architecture and crafts meet
  3. Pudukkottai – Getting immersed in the rich cultural heritage of rural India

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8 Comments »

  • mjskit said:

    That’s a BIG rock! Love the pictures! It’s always enjoyable to visit other lands, places, landmarks and cities through someone else’s camera. I love the snacks you decided to take on your road trip. Next time we take a road trip, I’m calling you. :)

  • Nirlep, India said:

    Travel & food! & tempting photographs to top it all…
    Whatta lovely combination :)
    Loved the entry!

    -Nirlep

  • Namrata said:

    Hello Sanjeeta, you have a beautiful site here. I totally digg your photography and your pure veg recipes. I have a question for the whole wheat banana bread: Would you suggest some alternative for the apple cider vinegar. Or could we skip it all together, will it make a huge difference to the quality of the bread?

  • vanamala said:

    very nice pics

  • Shashi @ http://runninsrilankan.com said:

    Your pictures of this little South Indian town are GORGEOUS! And this banana wholewheat quick bread and Mini Chocolaty Date Ring-Cakes sound like perfect travel food and something that will be fondly remembered. When we were kids, my mom and dad would make cutlets and sandwiches and we would munch on these on our travels – I might not remember all the places I went to, but I will never forget those cutlets and sandwiches :)

  • sanjeeta kk (author) said:

    @Namrata, vinegar acts as a substitute to eggs and gives lightness to the bake. Apple cider variety has a lovely taste than the plain vinegar. You can skip it and add yogurt instead.

  • Rashmi said:

    Hi sanjeeta,
    Have recently stumbled upon your beautiful blog. It is an amazing array of food that I love. Love the recipes since you have managed to make it very healthy. Just made mini doughnuts and they are fantastic. I also managed to sneak in some ragi and linseed with goji berries instead of cocoa powder. Am going to be a regular on this blog. Have already bookmarked plenty of recipes. Thank you for this sumptuous affair and keep up the good work.

  • sanjeeta kk (author) said:

    @Rashmi, so happy that you tried the bakes from Lite Bite and loved what you baked! Thanks for the lovely words of appreciation. Hugs.

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