Sunday, February 6, 2011

Rhubarb and Apple Quick Bread

I pride myself on being a careful shopper especially grocery shopping. It is required to have a clear and alert mind when buying vegetables, fruits,meat, fish and diary products. On the other hand,

I kind of take it easy while buying beans and picking up an attractive pack of beans wherever because I have not had any bad experiences with them. All that is in the past now. Having to be hyper alert while grocery shopping is downright depressing. The alternative is what follows in the story below.

A while ago I switched to buying organic chickpeas when the chickpeas I was buying in the supermarkets and Indian grocery stores looked like they were on steroids. When cooked they easily reached 1 inch which was downright scary. But besides that there were ok.

There are a numerous international super markets springing up where we live. While the exotic fruits, vegetables, spices and hard to find ingredients are enticing and gets me all excited and leads to me to do purchases that I normally would not. All of these stores also have good sized Indian grocery section and carry most groceries sometimes at much more reasonable prices. Who does not like reasonable prices? It was one of those times when I picked up a bag of red kidney beans.

Fast forward to a couple of week's ago. I soak the beans in the morning and in the evening I come home and get down to business of cooking. I had soaked some extra quantity so the curry can be frozen(yes I am a convert) to be used later in the week. After the beans were cooked I put one in the mouth. It felt like there was something weird about the taste. In the hurry of getting everything done I ignored and continued.

We sit down to eat and as soon as everyone takes a taste all of our faces register frowns to a strong metallic taste along with an ammonia smell. I could do nothing else but dump the whole batch in the drain. Just to confirm if it was indeed the beans we soaked another batch and sure enough there it was the same unmistakable smell. If you are curious the brand is called Durbar and is distributed by a company called Kohinoor Foods out of Edison, NJ. The even weirder part is it says it is a product of Thailand.

Henceforth am sticking to companies I know like Swad and Deep which are US based.

Here is a quick guide to pesticides for food shoppers.

I had bought some fresh rhubarb last Spring in the hopes of making this quick bread but it took me another 8 months before actually getting to doing it. I cut up the rhubarb and they lay in the freezer. I did not have enough rhubarb and so added an apple to make up for the required quantity.

I found this amazingly easy recipe on the King Arthur Flour website for Walnut-Strawberry(Rhubarb) quick bread.

1. 1 1/2 cups of unbleached all purpose flour
2. 1 cup sugar
3. 1/2 cup of chopped walnuts
4. 2 eggs
5. 1 1/4 cups of rhubarb and apple cooked to a sauce (I used a cup of rhubarb + 1 apple)
6. 1/4 tsp salt
7. 1 tsp of baking soda
8. 1/2 cup of oil
9. 1 tbsp of butter (or substitute with lemon oil)
10. 1 tsp of lemon juice

1. In a sauce pan cook chopped rhubarb, peeled and cored chopped apple along with the lemon juice to a smooth sauce
2. Preheat the oven to 350F, grease a loaf pan and set aside
3. In a bowl whisk together flour, sugar, salt, baking soda and chopped walnuts
4. In a different bowl whisk together the eggs, oil and the rhubarb apple sauce
5. Mix the dry and wet ingredients together and pour the batter into the pan
6.Bake for 60 minutes till a skewer inserted comes out clean. Mine could have done with another 15 minutes. Check if done carefully before removing
7. Cool and remove the bread from the pan and let it rest for another half hour before slicing


  1. Hmm.. the so-called "I can't bake"-er has baked yet another scrumptiously delicious looking goodie.. I must get down to it too now!

    Your bean experience totally "stinks"! ;) Thanks for mentioning the brand-names. Better for us to avoid.

  2. Oh no! You could taste the pesticide after cooking the beans?! Scary.
    Love the look of the bread ... no rhubarb here ... maybe i'll try with apples only. :-)

  3. Yet to make bakes with rhubarb, bread looks inviting..

  4. The rhubarb bread looks wonderful- I have been scared to use rhubarb because of its intense tartness.

    How terrible about those beans. I had a similar experience with toor dal, a different brand, it had the most noxious taste and for the first time in my life, I had to throw out dal :(

  5. good one ! and the metallic smelling beans is indeed a sad story

  6. totally feel for you!!! I had experience in sulfur/metalic flavor celery and califour ... even after soaking them for hours! Now when I have an (non-organic) apple, I have to make sure to peel its skin one inch deep *sigh*. But my depressive mood is instantly lifted up by your delightful quick bread! I almost smell that apple aroma from here!

  7. Same thing happened with me...I bought a brand of Red kidney beans called Nirav and i soaked overnight and pressure cooked upto 9-10 whistles but finally it didn't get cooked at all... :(

  8. Same thing happened with me...I bought a brand of Red kidney beans called Nirav and i soaked overnight and pressure cooked upto 9-10 whistles but finally it didn't get cooked at all... :(

  9. You are so right.. some brands really do have huge chickpeas! The they are on steroids comment made me laugh.

    I've not tasted or cooked with rhubarb before... but this bread sounds very good.

  10. Never cooked with rhubarb before, but heard a lot. Looks superb dear.

  11. SS I am totally flattered. As for this quick bread even a 'can't baker' like me can't mess it up but I still did in underbaking it.

    Give it a try and give me a shout.

    Shramila, apples or any tart fruit will be ideal.

  12. Ouch!! Too bad about the stinky and yucky tasting beans!!

    The bread looks yummm!

  13. Kohinoor and Durbar are basmati brands I have seen here - its weird that it says its made in Thailand....even worse is the taste!:(

    The rhubarb bread looks great!

  14. hmm, we got a bag of moong dal which has durbar brand. I will boil some and let you know if it smells too. The bread looks delicious.

  15. Rhubarb bread looks superb.. I love this really.. looks so yummy !!!
    Thanks for sharing it’s recipe.. I can also try it now in my home…


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