Cinnamon Sugar Blueberry Banana Bread

The final countdown is here and it’s currently T minus 8 days until the Little Guy’s due date. I’m both antsy for him to get here and freaked out that he’s going to get here before I’ve finished everything I want to do; as if it’s the end of the world.

One thing I did want to do was bake and a few weeks ago I took some time and did just that. I thoroughly enjoyed dusting off the KitchenAid and getting my hands back into the sugar and flour and what do you know; it’s felt familiar and really good.

This recipe for Cinnamon Sugar Blueberry Banana Bread from Crazy for Crust was just what the Doctor ordered and it came out exactly as I had hoped.

Moist and crunchy on the top this bread make for the perfect breakfast treat and not that it needs it but maybe next time time I’ll toss it a smidgen of lemon zest, extract or juice to give it a little extra pop.

Yours Truly,

Mel


Cravings

One of the questions that you get asked the most when you’re pregnant is, “Do you have any food cravings?” Generally my answer is, “No” because I really I don’t but as it’s gotten too tough for me to be on my swollen, sausage-like feet I crave baked goods. I crave them like an addict; all the time and any time and I’m taking this as a sign that I need to make time to get back in the kitchen and bake a few treats of my own.

Surprise! Look at what dusted off last Friday and puffy, kankle feet be damned.

Yours Truly,
Mel


Lemon Blueberry Bread

As part of my 3-Day Weekend celebration I decided to make some sort of sweet bread (vs. savory) and this Lemon blueberry recipe really fit the bill. Back when blueberries were in season I might have bought way more than I could eat with the intention of freezing some and now I was all to happy to break into my stash.

The recipe was submitted by ChezSpice onto All Recipes and I have to admit that I made a few minor tweaks. Before I started I knew that I wanted to make mini loaves so I doubled the recipe and divided the batter into 3 mini pans.

Also, after reading the ingredient list I decided that 2 Cups of sugar was an awful lot of sweet for 3 tiny loaves so I switch it out for 1 Cup of C&H light. C&H light was something that on purchased on a whim and it is a mix of stevia and pure cane sugar and now my go-to sugar substitutes. That’s because it’s still sweet, you don’t sacrifice flavor and most importantly; you don’t feel guilty when you eat six cookies instead of the just one you meant to have. Don’t lie, I know it’s happened to you too.

I did find that you don’t need to bake the mini loaves for as long as the single loaf; mine were about 40 minutes but be sure to check them with a toothpick and only remove them when it comes out clean.

As soon as these were out of the oven I was right there with the glaze and boy, did they look great. I even made sure to share a few loaves and I was rewarded with this text from a friend.

My favorite type of compliment is the kind that requires no words.

Yours Truly,

Mel


Silhouette T-Shirt Ideas

I’m think that it’s about time for me to dust off my Silhouette (that I got a few years ago) and I’m thinking that t-shirts and iron on transfers are going to be the way to go.

Now if someone asked me to describe myself in one word I’d say “Baker,” so I think it’s only appropriate that my future shirts say something about baking.

Before I do anything I’d love to get your feedback on a few different phrases I’ve been tossing around.

1. A Party Without Cake is Just a Meeting -Julia Child

2. Baking is Love Made Visible (or Edible)

I’m torn between visible and edible. Thoughts?

3. Sprinkles make everything better

4. Baking may be regarded as a science but it’s the chemistry between the ingredients and the cook that gives desserts life -Anna Olsen

5. I eat cake because it’s somebody’s birthday somewhere

I’m not sure how this happened but apparently it’s Friday so Happy Friday Everyone!

 

Yours Truly,

Mel


Rocky Road Cookies

When I saw these Rocky Road Cookies on Momables I knew I had to make them. They looked mouth-watering and they turned out anything like the Rocky Road candy bars or ice cream the recipe would be a keeper.

Unfortunately regardless of what the site says, these cookies are not simple. To me simple is throwing all ingredients in one bowl, mixing them together and plopping the dough onto a cookie sheet and popping it into the oven for 12 minutes at 350 degrees. Anything more than that it’s “simple” it’s just normal.

First assembled all the required ingredients + mini mallow bites (1/2 C.) and chocolate covered marshmallows (1 C.) my personal contribution to the recipe.

Next rig up a double-boiler and let me just say that any baking that requires a double-boiler = advanced and I’m thinking that these cookies better be pretty flipin’ fantastic for all the effort I’m going to.

Where was I? Oh yes, now that the double-boiler is in place add your chocolate chips and butter.

Continually stir them until they look like this and then you can stop and remove them from heat to cool.

Here’s the easy part. In a small bowl combine your dry ingredients.

In a separate larger bowl combine your wet ingredients and mix for 2 minutes until thick.

Add in the dry ingredients mixture and the cooled chocolate and mix for another minute.

My decision not to use mini marshmallows might have been based slightly off of the fact that I didn’t have any but I don’t regret it. However you choose to proceed this is where you add your nuts, other chocolate chips and marshmallow-like products.

Now here’s where we’re going to make some changes. Per the recipes instructions I line a cookie sheet with aluminum foil and after I place my cookie dough on it and baked it for 10 minutes all I got was a gooey, chocolate and foil encrusted mess than was hardly recognizable as a cookie.

To save you the trouble I’m going to tell you to line your cookie sheet with parchment paper instead and cookie your cookies for a total 14 minutes.

Not quite as good as the candy bar but with my additions you definitely get your fair share of marshmallows. For anyone who knows me, you know I’m always game for anything with lots of marshmallows but just be warned there’s quite a bit of effort involved if you make these cookies.

Next time I’ll have to find a way to make these but faster. However if you have time and are craving a s’more without the graham cracker and don’t have access to an open flame these cookies are a decent substitute.

Yours Truly,

Mel


Chai Banana Bread

First let me say that this Chai Banana Bread from Cooking Light was a lot more aesthetically appealing than its competition. It was, if you excuse the weirdness, just prettier and with a smidgen of spice and that banana flavor I’m giving it a solid 8 out of 10. Still not THE recipe but close enough that it wasn’t a hardship for me to snack on this for whole week.

Here’s the ingredient line up.

Combine your wet ingredients.

Next add your sugars and them combine; flour, salt and baking soda and add that to the mix.

Now it should be lookin’ something like this.

Finally add in your spices and the vanilla and stir just until it’s blended in.

Pour your batter into a greased bread pan and pop it in the oven.

Doesn’t that just look tasty?

Yum, yum.

Yours Truly,

Mel

P.S. I’m really liking what The Husband’s fancy camera does to my food pictures. What do you think, is this an improvement?


Blog Spotlight: Joy the Baker

I love Joy the Baker and when I grow up I want to be just like her. She’s witty, down-to-earth  and her blog posts are informative but at the same time, truly enjoyable.

Photo via www.joythebaker.com

Not to mention all her recipes looks delicious.

Photo via www.joythebaker.com

Photo via www.joythebaker.com

Joy seems like someone I’d totally hang out with. Not that I’m jealous or anything but she’s even met, and baked with Ree Drummond, whom you probably know as The Pioneer Woman.

If you want you can watch the whole episode here; Bonkers Awesome! Joy the Baker and The Pioneer Woman Dish Up Cinnamon Roll Perfection.

Photo via www.joythebaker.com

Well done Joy, you’ve got a new fan for life.

Yours Truly,

Mel


S’more Cookies

Don’t have a fire pit in your backyard but you’re craving s’more? No problem!

Bake up some of these S’more Cookies by Anna of Hidden Ponies. Then when they ready snatch one right out of the oven and close your eyes as you eat it; it’s almost like the real deal.

Nothing fancy is needed in the ingredients. Unless you’re me and you don’t have enough Hershey kisses; in which case you resort to raiding the pantry (so you don’t have to go to the grocery store) and end up using Hershey bars and Candy melts. Chocolate is chocolate, right?

Cream brown sugar & butter.

Add eggs, vanilla & water. Mix until smooth.

Mash graham crackers & add together the dry ingredients to the mixer.

You should get something that looks like this.

Drop teaspoon sized bits onto a greased cookie sheet and bake for 8-9 minutes. Don’t worry if you’re cookies are bigger than the marshmallows, that will fix itself in a minute.

Once all your cookies are baked place put them back on the cookie sheet with a marshmallow and top and pop them back in the oven for 1- 1/2 minutes but keep and eye on them; no one wants burnt s’more cookies.

When they’re that beautiful golden-brown color pull them out and stick a chocolate on it and you’re done.

Now all you need is a cup of hot cocoa and it’s almost like you’re camping but without the mosquitoes.

Yours Truly,

Mel

 


Try it on Tuesday: Aprons are Trendy

I’m very messy when I bake. I wipe my hands on my apron, I use the skirt as a potholder and I somehow always manage to get flour everywhere. That said, there’s absolutely no reason why you can’t be cute when you’re baking.

Baking is Trendy

 

*Psst* and they’re affordable too.
Yours Truly,
Mel

Baking Spree

Lately I’ve been on a baking/cooking spree; as both my waistline and my fridge will attest to and I’ve got Pinterest to blame.

Its gotten so bad that I’ve pretty much run out of Tupperware and I’ve now resorted to using mixing bowls, baking dishes, ziploc or whatever else I can cram things into.

See what I mean?

Well, fear not, my dry spell is over and there will be LOTS of recipes coming up, so stay tuned.

Yours Truly,

Mel