Banana Cake Muffins

24 01 2013

banana muffins

An icy cold day like today needs something warm baking in the oven. But what to make? I’m not sure how I happened across this recipe for Cake Mix Banana Bread from Real Mom, but it sounded ideal for it’s simplicity and likeliness of being tasty. And, by making them into muffins instead of a loaf, I got to use these spunky Drömmar bakery cups that I picked up from Ikea.

And they did turn out lovely and yummy! I would call them banana cake muffins over banana bread muffins because the texture was more light and fluffy rather than dense and banana-y. Maybe add another banana next time?

 

Here’s my adapted recipe:

1 (18.25 oz) package yellow cake mix

1 tsp pumpkin pie spice

5 egg whites

1/4 cup oil

1 Tbs Coconut Oil

3 medium ripe bananas, smushed

Mix all the ingredients together until smooth. Divide batter evenly among 12 large muffin cups. Sprinkle the tops with a little granulated and/or brown sugar. Bake at 350F for 25-30 minutes, until it passes the toothpick test.

 

As a side note, if your bananas aren’t ripe enough, try baking them until they blacken. This makes them super sweet! Just be careful to cool them down a little before mixing with the eggs.

 

Advertisements




Recipe ideas with Fillipo Berio Olive Oil #imabzzagent

13 06 2012

There are many different kinds of oils jammed into my cupboard, but the one that’s sitting in front is Filippo Berio Olive Oil.  Filippo Berio is one of the brands that I like to buy, so I was excited to participate in the BzzCampaign. I’ve been brushing up on the health benefits to using olive oil over butter and other oils. Inspired to make some meaningful substitutions in our family’s diet, I started looking for more places to use it beyond the typical sauteed onions and garlic.

Once I started keeping track of how many things I can use olive oil in, I was surprised by how versatile it really is. With a bit of balsamic vinegar, a cutting of basil from the garden, and some salt and pepper, olive oil makes a tasty dressing for grape tomato halves. Adding a splash of olive oil to jarred spaghetti sauce makes it taste more like homemade. (And it only takes a tiny bit to keep cooked spaghetti from sticking to itself while trying to keep it warm until the kids have finished cleaning their room and are ready to eat dinner…that can be awhile!)

One of the new recipes I tried was this one for grilled pork from Leite’s Culinaria, using olive oil in place of the canola oil in the marinade. When I broiled the meat, the olive oil made a shiny crust on the outside of the meat just like canola oil would have. And, my goodness, the board dressing should not be optional! Using Filippo Berio Olive Oil gave it a bright, almost fruity flavor that really bounced off the sweetness of the meat. My family agreed that it had exceptional flavor, and ate it up before I could get a picture.

So, I made it a point to get some pictures of another flavorful dish, our family potatoes. During grilling season, we eat a lot of potatoes cooked on the grill in foil packets. Usually, I add butter, but have found that olive oil makes it a less heavy side dish and doesn’t burn as easily. This is an easy dish to make with kids, who love to shake the spices on! Here’s the recipe:


Family Potatoes Recipe:

1. Slice each potato into 8 wedges.

2. Add potatoes, enough olive oil to coat the pieces, and your choice of seasonings to a sturdy plastic bag. (Think beyond salt and pepper to rosemary, Old Bay, dill, etc.) Close and shake until coated.

3. Wrap in foil and throw on the grill or bake in 450 F oven about 20-30 minutes, turning once, until tender.

If you need more exactitude in your measurements, try this recipe for Oven Baked Parmesan Fries. Love them with freshly grated parm!

My next step is to find the Filippo Berio Extra Light Olive Oil and start subbing it into my baking and desserts. Here’s some of the recipes I’ve found on Pinterest that I’m drooling over:

Olive Oil Granola (from a blog called “Love & Olive Oil,” no less)

Olive Oil & Sea Salt Palmiers (I didn’t think those could be made in a healthier way)

Olive Oil Pancakes (I love pancakes!)

 Do you have any recipes with olive oil that I should try too?

PS–Just a disclaimer, this is my own opinion of Filippo Berio Olive Oil. As a bzzagent, I got a free sample bottle as part of this BzzCampaign, but the opinions are all mine. You can take my review with a grain of salt…Or a whole sprinkle of salt over a small dish of olive oil with some crusty bread to dip in it. That would be nice.





Ping goes to school

29 08 2011

No, Bean isn’t reading about computers or submarines…It’s a duck! With much enthusiasm, we’ve started part of our home school for the year with the Five in A Row Series. The first story we’ve read together is A Story about Ping, a little duck living on the Yangtze River. Some of our projects included drawing motion lines with colored glue, talking to relatives about ducks, and discussing Chinese culture. We finished off our week with a homemade Chinese food dinner. Bean’s favorite takeout dish is “beef on a stick.”  Wasn’t sure we could replicate it at home, but this recipe got her seal of approval as “the best dinner ever.” Meanwhile, Mighty Man ate 3+ of the shrimp egg rolls they made together. Looking forward to next week’s adventures!

  





Egg Roll or Roll of Egg?

8 03 2011

Looking for something quick for a Mardi Gras dinner, I found a recipe for a “baked omelet” in my Taste of Home Cookbook. Basically, you blend 6 eggs, 1 cup milk, 1/2 cup flour, and some seasonings, then bake it in a greased 13×9 inch pan at 450 F until the eggs are set. Sprinkle with cheese and roll from the short end. I also fried up some black olives, diced potatoes and cubed ham to put on top of the cheese.

Overall, I’m not sure that it’s an authentic omelet texture (it’s been awhile since I ate a good omelet), but the flavors are not too strange to keep the family from trying it. And eating it!
I think it could be improved by adding chopped herbs like parsley to the egg mixture to give it more color and a brighter texture/flavor. Also, once fillings beyond the cheese are added, enlist your sous-chef to help transfer the roll from the pan to the platter. It’s very wobbly!

 





Coffee Cookery and The Coffee Shop

14 01 2010

Been thinking a lot about coffee today. My friend had given me “The Coffee Cookbook,” but I haven’t made any recipes from it yet. I was going to post the link to the book, but it doesn’t seem to be available online. If you’re curious, you could probably ask about it at a Dunn Bros. Coffee Shop or go to Coffee Kids: Grounds for Hope organization and find something else to get your coffee fix (the books’ proceeds support Coffee Kids). I want to try the chocolate lava muffins recipe very soon. Maybe for Valentine’s Day?

I also discovered a fun blog called The Coffee Shop. I’m looking forward to hearing about her coffee adventures. Her blog has a giveaway for a starbucks card through Saturday, so be sure to visit soon.





Nutmeg Christmas Cookies

11 12 2009

Nutmeg is a very cozy spice. I love how it smells, especially freshly grated. This is good, because it’s cheaper to buy the kernel than pre-ground! My little micro-planer makes quick work of grating. This recipe is adapted from one in Bon Appetit Dec. 1994 for Brown Sugar and Nutmeg Snaps. The issue was devoted to creating a Victorian Christmas. They say that “Windsor Castle required six pounds of [nutmeg] for the royal mincemeat” at Christmastime. This cookie recipe requires considerably less, but the flavor of nutmeg is still strong! You might want to add less nutmeg if you prefer the flavor of brown sugar to be more pronounced. The flavor reminds me of a gingersnap cookie. These are also very kid friendly to make. Bean rolled the dough balls in sugar and smashed them down. After the cookies came out of the over, it was hard to tell which ones got a little extra-smushed.

Nutmeg Christmas Cookies (adapted from Bon Appetit 12/1991)

  • 1 1/4 cups packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter, room temp
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • extra sugar

Beat brown sugar and butter with mixer until fluffy. Mix in egg. Add flour, nutmeg, baking soda and salt; beat until well blended. Chill 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 350F. Roll dough into small balls. Roll balls in sugar, coating completely. Arrange on lined cookie sheets about 2 inches apart. Using the bottom of a glass, flatten cookies. Bake until cookies are golden, about 10-13 minutes. Cool on baking sheets.

Be sure to check out Thrifty and Chic Mom to see her cookie recipe exchange and giveaway!

and Susieqtpie’s Scraps of Life Recipe & Idea Swap.





Neapolitan Cookie Recipe

9 12 2009

Here’s a fun Christmas cookie recipe that I got from a recipe swap a few years ago. I usually mess around with the flavors to avoid using nuts. I usually add almond flavoring to both the white and the red, which makes a nice complement to the chocolate. If I had strawberry-flavored extract, I’d love to make them like Neapolitan ice cream.  They aren’t the most spectacular cookies ever taste-wise that I’ve had, but they are simple to make and are a colorful addition to any assortment of cookies.

Neapolitan Cookies

  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups white sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 5 drops red food coloring
  • 1 oz unsweetened chocolate, melted
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts

Cream butter and sugar. Stir in the egg and vanilla. Combine the flour, baking powder and salt; stir into the creamed mixture. Divide dough evenly into 3 small bowls. Add almond extract and red food coloring to one portion; mix thoroughly. Mix chocolate into second bowl and walnuts into the third bowl. Line a 9×5 inch loaf pan with waxed paper. Spread pink dough in the pan. Next, layer the walnut dough, then the chocolate. Cover with waxed paper and place in the refrigerator until firm, about 4 hours.

Preheat oven to 350F. Turn out dough by inverting pan; peel off waxed paper. With a sharp knife, cut dough lengthwise in half. Slice each half of dough into 1/4 inch slices. Place on cookie sheet one inch apart. Bake 10 to 12 minutes until light brown. Remove to wire racks to cool.

Be sure to check out Thrifty and Chic Mom to see her cookie recipe exchange and giveaway!

and Susieqtpie’s Scraps of Life Recipe & Idea Swap.