Einkorn, which translates to mean “one grain” in German, is the only wheat never to have been hybridized or modified. The origins of this heirloom wheat varietal can be traced back 12,000 years to the Fertile Crescent, where it became the first domesticated plant. Carla Bartolucci came across einkorn when searching for an alternative grain for her gluten-sensitive daughter. They were immediately hooked to this grain’s sweet, nutty flavor.
Today, Carla and her husband, Rodolfo, are the largest growers of Einkorn wheat in the world. They sell organic einkorn wheat berries, flour and products under the banner, Jovial Foods.
In her cookbook, Einkorn: Recipes for Nature’s Original Wheat, Carla shares the history of this ancient grain, along with 100 different recipes that demonstrate different practices for baking with it. For example, when making cakes, like this Dairy-Free Coconut Pound Cake (recipe below), she suggests sifting the einkorn flour twice to eliminate potential lumps.
She says, “Made from four different coconut-derived products—oil, flour, flakes, and milk—the rich flavor of this dairy-free pound cake will bring you back for a second slice. I’ve made a few tweaks to the mixing technique and proportions used in a classic pound cake to give it a better spring in the oven. The batter might seem thick, but the cake will bake up very moist.”
Dairy-Free Coconut Pound Cake
Excerpted with permission from Einkorn: Recipes for Nature’s Original Wheat
Yield: 1 cake
2 cups (240 g) all-purpose einkorn flour, plus more for dusting
3⁄4 cup (150 g) granulated sugar
1⁄2 cup (120 g) coconut milk
1⁄2 cup (100 g) extra-virgin coconut oil, melted and cooled slightly, plus more for greasing the pan
1⁄4 cup (30 g) coconut flour
1⁄4 cup (20 g) unsweetened flaked coconut
1 tablespoon baking powder
3 large eggs
1⁄2 teaspoon fine sea salt
3⁄4 cup (90 g) powdered sugar
2 tablespoons coconut milk
1 tablespoon unsweetened flaked coconut
To make the cake: Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease and flour an 81⁄2 × 41⁄2-inch loaf pan.
In a medium bowl, sift together the flours, baking powder and salt. Stir in the flaked coconut.
In the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, add the eggs and process on medium speed for 1 minute to break up the yolks. Add the granulated sugar and mix on high for 3 minutes until thick and creamy. Remove the bowl from the mixer and whisk in one-third of the flour mixture. Whisk in 1⁄4 cup of the coconut milk. Continue in this manner until you have finished adding the flour and the milk. Fold in the 1⁄2 cup oil until incorporated and smooth.
Pour batter into the pan. Bake for 1 hour until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool the cake in pan on a rack for 10 minutes. Invert the cake and place on a rack to cool completely before glazing.
To make the glaze: Whisk together the powdered sugar and coconut milk to form a pourable glaze. Stir in the flaked coconut. Set the cake and rack on a piece of parchment paper. Drizzle the cake with the glaze and let set for 1 hour before serving. The cake can be stored in an airtight container for up to 5 days.