A dense coconut cinnamon bread made with different types of coconut and a hint of cinnamon.
We love coconut at our house. It is always a special occasion when we bring home whole coconuts to crack open. My mother would always tell stories about living back home in Saipan and how she would climb up the trees and pick coconuts every day before school as a snack. So I was immediately excited for The Whole Coconut Cookbook by Nathalie Fraise. It is a gluten-free cookbook focused on eating healthy and, of course, using coconut in a variety of ways including coconut flour, coconut sugar, and coconut nectar. I was lucky that I had most of these ingredients on-hand, except for the coconut nectar which was very hard to find – and fairly pricey. Still, I found just the recipe I wanted to make and wanted to make it right, so I went head and spent the money.
I’ve been wanting to make more gluten-free baked goods for the site for a while and thought someone who focuses on gluten-free foods would have a few solid recipes that I could try and share with you. So when I saw the coconut cinnamon bread, I knew I needed to try it. I thought it would be the perfect bread to slice up in the morning with a bit of butter and coffee.
So I baked the bread. I even made my own coconut butter because the recipe was only two ingredients and right next to the recipe for the bread. I baked it for the recommended amount of time, but the bread still felt under baked, so I bake it for another 5 minutes…. And another 5 minutes. And I was still not very confident that the bread was finished, but the top was getting a bit too brown. So I baked for another few minutes with foil on top and decided that would be that. In the end, I baked it a whole 13 minutes past the highest recommended time. After I let it cool, I sliced it open only to find the bread was extremely crumbly. And the bread was so dense and was still under baked and gummy in the middle. The worst part was that it was impossible to detect any cinnamon in the bread despite grinding my own fresh cinnamon.
I thought maybe it was a fluke and baked another loaf, paying extra attention that all my measurements were accurate. But still, I needed to bake the bread for much longer than suggested. Although the bread was still slightly underdone in the middle it was as gummy as the first. I still couldn’t taste any cinnamon. It was coconuty for sure, but the cinnamon was near impossible to taste. I was disappointed. The coconut cinnamon bread isn’t exactly an inexpensive bread to bake and I just wasted a lot of ingredients making two loaves. In the end, no one was able to finish the loaves and I crumbled it up and tossed it out for the animals to eat.
I don’t want to give the book a completely negative review since I only made two recipes from the book - the coconut butter, which was successful, and the coconut cinnamon bread. Gluten-free baking isn’t easy. I am more hopeful for the rest of the cookbook and will try them and report back, but I don’t think I will attempt any of the other baked goods from the book any time soon. In case you have better luck with gluten-free baking, here is the recipe!
Coconut Cinnamon Bread
- 1 ¼ cup almond flour
- ¾ cup brown rice flour
- 3 tablespoons coconut flour
- ¼ cup arrowroot starch
- 2 tablespoons psyllium husk can also use ground chia or flax
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- ½ cup coconut butter recipe below, melted
- ⅓ cup coconut nectar
- ½ cup coconut milk
- 3 eggs beaten
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line an 8 ½ x 4 ½ loaf pan with parchment paper and grease.
- In a large bowl, mix together the almond four, brown rice flour, coconut four, arrowroot starch, psyllium husk, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together. Set aside.
- In a small bowl, mix together the coconut butter, coconut nectar, coconut milk, and eggs together and mix well.
- Create a well in the dry ingredients and add the wet ingredients. Mix until well combined. Place the mixture into the loaf pan and bake until a toothpick comes out clean and the top is golden brown, about 40 – 45 minutes.
- Allow the bread to cool in the pan for 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack. Allow to cool for another 10 minutes, then slice and serve.
- 5 cups unsweetened shredded coconut
- Pinch of sea salt
- 1 – 2 tablespoons coconut oil if needed
- Add the ingredients in a high powered blender or food processor and blend until smooth. Scrape the sides as needed. This can take anywhere between 5 – 15 minutes, depending on the strength of your appliance. To speed up the process, you can add coconut oil to the mixture.
I received this book to review from Blogging for Books for free. All thoughts and opinions are 100% my own.
what a bummer. I definitely won't be trying this. I am honestly surprised you'd post beautiful pictures and the recipe if it didn't even work for you? Why not tweak it and post that instead?
I thought about tweaking it, but after trying it as many times as I did, I ran out of ingredients and some of it was too much for me to justify repurchasing. The post in general is a review of the cookbook and for me that dealt with what I made from it. I figured I should show everyone what my results were and what it was I was dealing with. Perhaps someone who knows more about gluten free baking would eventually be able to assist me in troubleshooting and I could revisit the post with updates and changes!