I love granola bars. They are a great snack at my desk (boo, desk job) at work. They are a great oh-my-god-I-don’t-have-time-to-eat-breakfast quick breakfast. They are also useful for when I actually DID eat breakfast, but am still hungry. I just grab one and eat it on my way to the subway station. The problem with granola bars is that they usually have a few ingredients that I don’t really want to eat in them. Or the are covered in chocolate (a few chocolate chips? Not the same). Or they are just very expensive, and there are only 5 in a box. Continue reading
Today’s the first day of Autumn! I’m still sharing this summer produce recipe, okay?
Summer produce. Yum! Too much fresh produce that you can’t finish? Eew. That’s probably where pies, crisps, tarts, and cobblers came from, actually. And boy, do I love baking with fruits! After making a whole bunch of lattice-crust pies, I decided to take a different route with these plums, and this cobbler was born! Continue reading
Whether we bake, freeze or make smoothies, we always find ways to use up overripe bananas, but this time we bought bananas especially to make this bread. It was one of the recipes on Jessica’s list in her favorite bakebook (can you guess what it is? She should start one of those cook-through blogs and get a movie deal like Julie & Julia). She started mashing the bananas, but Richie didn’t want her to bake that day, so I took over.
This quick bread can be a dessert or breakfast! We made three, one for the parents, one for my in laws, and one for the freezer, because we always like to make extras for later.
Chocolate-Banana Marble Bread from The Art and Soul of Baking
- 2 or 3 very ripe bananas
- 1/4 cup (2 oz.) buttermilk
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 2 cups (7 oz.) sifted cake flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 cup (1 oz.) unsifted Dutch-process cocoa powder
- 3 tablespoons (1 1/2 oz.) boiling water, plus more if needed
- 1 1/2 sticks (6 oz.) unsalted butter
- 1 cup (7 oz.) sugar
- 2 large eggs
- Preheat the oven to 350 and grease the pan(s). The recipe calls for 1 9×5″ load pan, we used 3 smaller ones.
- Peel the bananas and place in a bowl or food processor. Mash or process to a smooth puree. Measure out 1 cup of the puree and transfer to a medium bowl; that’s all you need. Add the buttermilk and vanilla and set aside.
- Sift the cake flour, baking soda and baking powder together in a medium bowl and blend well. Set aside.
- Place the cocoa powder in a small bowl, pour boiling water over it and stir until it forms a smooth paste-it should run thickly off the spoon. If it’s too thick, add another tablespoon of water and stir again. Set aside.
- Place the butter and sugar in the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and beat on medium-high for 4 to 5 minutes until the butter is very light. Turn the machine to medium and add the eggs, 1 tablespoon at a time, completely blending in each addition before adding the next. Don’t forget to scrape down the sides of the bowl.
- With the mixer on the lowest speed, add 1/3 of the flour mixture, then half of the banana mixture. Repeat with remaining ingredients, scrape down the bowl and finish blending batter by hand.
- Tranfer half the batter to a medium bowl, add the cocoa paste and gently but thoroughly blend it into the batter with a rubber spatula.
- Drop alternating spoonfuls of batters into the prepared pans, then marbleize by using a spoon to gently turn the batter oven in 3 places down the length of the pan.
- Bake for 55 to 65 minutes.
What do you do with summer fruit that’s going to be bad tomorrow? You make pie, of course! Honestly, I can’t decide if I like most fruits raw or cooked (baked, barbecued, you know). So when both Dad and I came home from the supermarket with giant bags of summer peaches, there was no way they were all getting eaten. At the end of the week there were exactly six left to make this amazing pie! I also had a few raspberries, so I threw them in here. The recipe called for nectarines and blackberries, but hey, this substitution worked just fine.
Sunday brunch means runny egg yolks to me. I’ve been practicing my poaching skills and getting pretty good consistently runny yolks and cooked whites. But you know what? Poaching in water isn’t your only option! This is something our dad always made growing up, eggs cooked in tomato sauce!
You can make this while you’re still half-asleep on a Sunday morning with slices of leftover challah and your favorite store-bought tomato sauce.
I love biscotti! They are the perfect after dinner treat, and are a great treat in the morning to dip in coffee. These cookies are filled with dried fruits and nuts, which makes me think they’re healthy, too! I usually take my time and make teeny skinny biscotti, but these are great cut a bit thicker, since you get a mouthful of the dried fruit. Plus, it makes making the biscotti that much easier. Continue reading
Sour cherries and chocolate are an amazing combination. And muffins are a great freezer-friendly breakfast or snack. So when I bought an extra bag of dried sour cherries, I just knew I had combine them with chocolate. And I did! These muffins are great, and I made them a little healthier by using whole wheat pastry flour and cottage cheese in the batter, instead of all white flour and sour cream.
The tartness of the cherries combined with the sweet chocolate and batter is perfect. You may think you want to cut down on the sugar in the recipe, and I was thinking about it, too, but the cherries are super sour, so I was pretty sure we needed the sweetness to counteract the tart cherries. Maybe I’ll try to make these even healthier with raw sugar, agave, or even honey next time. Continue reading
The problem with making desserts for Shabbat is that we can’t take pictures of the final project…I mean, you can see the cake and how it looked right out of the oven, but you can’t see it sliced and on a plate, which is too bad because this cake was pretty. Okay, the pan is a little bit messy, but at least my counter is clean! Oh, and the other problem is that you have to make the desserts pareve. Which means no cream cheese frosting! Those who dare to eat pareve whipped topping dolloped some on top of their cake. I ate it plain and it was amazing just the way it was. Continue reading
On the rare occasion that I buy sour cream, I really need to use it before it goes bad. That means a lot of cake and muffins are baked in my house, then frozen for future breakfasts. I mean, I don’t want to waste a perfectly good ingredient. In this case, I decided to bake coffee cake, because it’s classic New York cuisine and easy to make for breakfast. I found a recipe in an old issue of Bon Appetit I had lying around, and it was perfect! A thick crumb topping and a nice moist cake.
I didn’t make these muffins “corniest,” since I didn’t have any frozen corn, and it’s the winter so I definitely didn’t have access to fresh corn. I made them even though I was missing an ingredient because I was stuck home and really wanted to bake, and had everything else handy. I also thought corn muffins would be a fun breakfast! I think omitting the corn was a mistake, because they could have used some of the moisture and sweetness from the kernels. Still, cut in half and toasted with a bit of butter, they made a great breakfast! They would make a great companion to a savory meal too. Maybe some vegetarian chili?
I still have most of a bag of cornmeal left, so I’ll try these with the corn next time and I’ll keep you updated.