Sunday, October 20, 2013

Sourdough Surprises October: Coconut Rum & Raisin Loaf

For the first three years of high school in Jamaica  (equivalent to grades 6 - 8), we are required to take a Food & Nutrition class. You can imagine the mishaps and hilarity that ensued with approximately several 10 to 13 year-olds in a kitchen. Honestly, I don't remember any major mistakes on my part (memory loss?), I left that to the kitchen at home (burnt candy and melted spoons anyone?) One memory that stands out is my friend using salt instead of sugar to make a drink. Yeah, that was as delicious as you might expect.

 I also remember making a quiche - that was interesting since at the time, I didn't like eggs. But I think I ate my quiche with the knowledge that quiche would never pass my lips ever again. I've gone back on that a few times now. Ha. There was the time our teacher instructed us to create a menu that was high in iron. I made liver and onions. I do not like liver. Do you see a pattern here? Always making something that I don't like?

Coconut Rock Buns. Source

There was one item that I did like though. No. LOVE. Rock buns. Rock buns are a small cake so named because the scraggly top looks similar to a rock. They are filled with raisins and often coconut. My mind has been on home a lot lately so when I saw that the challenge for this month's Sourdough Surprises was quick bread/muffins, I knew that I would make something that reminded me of home. Rock buns in loaf form was an easy decision. Soaking my raisins in rum was just the next logical step.

I think that perhaps I was channeling a bit too much of F&N classes as for some reason, I just kept accidentally adding too much butter to a ginger coconut streusel that I had intended to top my loaf with. So essentially, it became a (delicious) paste rather than a streusel. After batch after batch of failed streusel, I decided that I would make the loaf without it and then add a ginger glaze. Then I'd take a breath, get the streusel right and then make a second loaf with a streusel.

Right as I was about to put the loaf in the oven, I thought I'd top the loaf with a batch of non-streusel streusel anyway. Couldn't hurt and I didn't want to waste ingredients. Let me just say - BEST DECISION EVER! Brown Sugar + Coconut + Ginger + Heat = Caramelized Happiness. (Pretty much any equation that includes food equals happiness.) It tasted like I had topped my loaf with little bits of one of my most favourite Jamaican treats -  drops (I'll share that some day).

I wanted to make a second loaf IMMEDIATELY. But alas, I was out of eggs and soaked raisins.  If I didn't know the calorie count of this loaf, I honestly would make it every week. The morning that I made it, I blew through my daily calorie goal long before lunchtime. I loved it that much. I hope you do! Note, I'm not including the non-streusel streusel ingredients, but if you want that additional bliss or the perfected streusel, just leave a comment.

Coconut Rum & Raisin Loaf


1 cup raisins
1/2 cup rum
2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ginger
1/2 teaspoon grated nutmeng
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
2 eggs
1/2 cup milk (coconut milk would be extra delicious; I even made a batch with eggnog!)
1/2 cup of oil
1/2 cup 166% sourdough starter, unfed
1 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cups shredded coconut


Soak the raisins in the rum overnight. Shake the container from time to time to ensure that all the raisins get their share of rum.

Preheat oven to 350 F.
Grease and flour the bottom and 1/2 inch up the sides of a 9"
In a medium bowl sift together flour, baking powder, salt, ginger, nutmeg and cinnamon. Set aside.

In a small bowl whisk eggs, milk, oil, starter, brown sugar and vanilla.

Make a well in the dry ingredients and then gently stir in the wet ingredients. Do not over-mix. Count to ten then stop. It will be lumpy and there may be streaks of flour.

Gently fold in coconut and raisins. Count to 3 and then stop. Note, you can drain the raisins before folding them in or add them along with that very delicious rum.

Bake for 50-55 minutes or until an inserted toothpick is clean.

Allow to cool completely before slicing.


  1. Even without the non-streusel streusel, your recipe totally delicious and tropical. This combination of rum, gingery spices, brown sugar and coconut has my taste buds quivering in anticipation.

    1. Thanks! This is definitely one of the most delicious things I've made recently.

  2. Hmm... thought I just commented, but it isn't there... so if this duplicates, I apologize! Any streussel, even if it doesn't work out, is just added deliciousness, right?? But even without it, this looks delicious, so I'd call it a success! Great job!

    1. Thanks, Shelley! No duplicates. Oh this was definitely a success. You're so right about added deliciousness.

  3. Yum, this sounds absolutely delicious, especially with the caramelized "struesel" on top!

  4. Coconut and Rum, how decadent that sounds! Those rock buns look good too.

  5. These sound great! When you said caramelized, you had me drooling. Loved your home-ec stories. Reminded me of the times we ate fudge with a spoon because no one could get the recipe right. ;)

    1. Haha. But I'm sure it was delicious fudge! A friend of mine stopped baking after a rather disastrous lemon meringue pie in F&N.

  6. Oh my! Your loaf sounds absolutely divine and that caramelized topping. Yum!

  7. YUM! Your loaf sounds amazing and look really delicious, too! The rock cakes sound delicious as well! Thanks for joining us this month!

  8. I think I blew my calorie count just looking at the pics! LOL! Such a gorgeous loaf!