8.12.2013

Frozen-Banana Oatmeal Muffins

It's that time of year where fresh fruit is abundant. Blueberries, peaches, raspberries, pears - all are plentiful.

If you're like me, you still buy bananas weekly, but some of them are getting by-passed for the local stuff and ending up looking rather sorry, squishy and brown.

Not to worry! I just pop mine in the freezer, and use them in muffins, breads, cakes, etc.

I had a ton of them stocked up, so I put off buying new ones this weekend, and got to work this morning to make these tasty treats:





Frozen-Banana Oatmeal Muffins

Ingredients

3/4 cup plain flour
3/4 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup organic oats
1 Tbsp. flax meal
1/4 cup organic sugar
2 tsps. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. sea salt
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 cup of chopped walnuts (optional)

2 eggs, beaten
1/4 cup oil (I use E.V.O.O.)
1/4 cup milk
1/4 cup vanilla yogurt (or plain yogurt and 1 tsp. vanilla)
3 frozen very ripe bananas, thawed slightly in microwave and squeezed into bowl, then mashed into the liquids.

Method

Combine all dry ingredients in a medium bowl.  I use a whisk to get this nice and airy.  Make a well in the center.

Beat the eggs in a small bowl and add the oil milk and yogurt. Whisk until smooth.  Add the bananas and stir into the liquid ingredients, mash with a fork to break up the banana.

Pour into the well and stir with a wooden spoon just until combined. It's okay if you still see bits of flour, just make sure the bottom of the bowl isn't hiding a big lump of dry ingredients.

Bake in a 400 degree oven for about 23 minutes. I use eco-friendly, parchment muffin cups. Test for doneness.

When done, remove from oven and lift muffins out of the tin with a fork, onto a wire rack.
Let cool, and Dig in, Flynn!

6.03.2013

In Praise of Bishop's Bread





Modified Bishop's Bread*

1/2 cup currants
1/2 cup chopped dried apricots
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1/4 cup chopped walnuts
1/4 cup chopped cashews

1 egg, beaten
1/4 cup white sugar
1/4 cup Turbinado sugar
1/4 cup oil (I used e.v.o.o.)
1 tsp. vanilla
1 Tbsp vinegar + enough milk to make 1 cup

1 1/2 cups unbleached white flour
2 Tbsp. flax meal + enough whole wheat flour to make 1/2 cup
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt

Put all fruits and nuts in a small bowl.

In medium bowl, beat egg, until frothy.  Add sugars and whisk until combined.  Whisk in the oil and vanilla.  Add milk and whisk to blend.

In a separate bowl, whisk flours, flax, baking soda and salt.  Add fruit and nuts and stir to combine.

Dump flour mixture into the liquid ingredients and stir with a wooden spoon, just to combine.

Scrape into a greased loaf pan, or spring form pan.

Bake at 350 degrees F for an hour, or until it tests "done".

Allow to cool for about 15 minutes before removing from pan.

Cover and let sit for a  few hours or overnight before cutting. (I couldn't wait!)

Dig in, Flynn!

*This recipe has no glace cherries (my husband doesn't like them), so I substituted the apricots, and added some cashews (which he loves).

4.19.2013

Rolling in the deep ... sugar, butter and cinnamon!

I have been absent for a long spell.  Easter was sooo busy, what with preparations for Easter weekend.  Both my husband and I sing in our church choir and we had many practices prior to the event.

As well, my mother's 84th birthday fell shortly after Easter, and then my godmother and Aunt's 90th birthday was celebrated recently.  My uncle and his wife, who had come up from Nova Scotia for the party, came to stay with us for a short time. Of course, I had to treat them to some of my home-baked goodies, so I made a loaf of bread, a blueberry Bundt cake and these gorgeous cinnamon rolls.

It would be cruel of me not to share the recipe, wouldn't it?



Simple Cinnamon Spirals

1 1/2 cups plain flour
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
2 Tbsp. sugar
4 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 cup cold butter

1 cup milk

1/3 cup butter, softened
1 cup packed golden sugar
2 1/2 tsps. cinnamon
1/3 cup currants

Whisk together flours, sugar, baking powder and salt in a large bowl.  Cut in the 1/4 cup cold butter with a a pastry blender until crumbly.  Make a well in the center.

Add milk and stir to make a soft dough.  Add more milk as necessary if the dough is too dry.
Turn out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead about 8-10 times.  Use a rolling pin to roll out into a rectangle about 12 inches long and 1/3 inch thick.  Pat sides as you go to shape the rectangle.

Cream the 1/3 cup soft butter with brown sugar and cinnamon, in a small bowl, until nice and smooth.

Spread creamed mixture carefully over the entire surface of the dough - try to get as close to the edges as possible.  Sprinkle the currants over the surface.

Roll up from the bottom edge, slowly and carefully.

Using a sharp knife, mark at the halfway point.  Work on each half at a time, dividing into first two sections and then three each, for a count of six rolls for each half.

Place fairly close together on a parchment-lined, or greased baking sheet.

Bake in a 400 degrees F. oven for about 23 minutes.

Cool on a wire rack, and drizzle with an icing glaze (1/2 cup icing sugar, and enough milk to make a runny glaze.)

Pour yourself a fresh cup of coffee (or tea), and

Dig in, Flynn!