Quick Cornbread Muffins
Don’t get me wrong. The Marie Calendars cornbread mix is just about the best prepackaged mix money can buy. Why start from scratch, when Marie does it best? Well, when you’re rained in – and can only find Jiffy mix (I tried, was awful, and threw away a batch of muffins before the soup was finished)…you might need a quick little cornbread recipe to complete your cozy meal.
1 cup Cornmeal
1 cup Flour
1/3 cup Sugar
1/4 cup Canola Oil
1 cup Water or Milk
2 teas. Baking Soda
1/2 teas. Salt
Directions: Preheat 400, grease a muffin tin (or small loaf pan). Mix all your ingredients together. Who cares about the order? Fill cups 80-90% full for large muffins (makes 6 to 8 large muffins). Bake ‘em for approximately 15 minutes. ENJOY!
Adapted from Allrecipes.com.
Apple and Honey Challah
Challah! This is one of those things I have always wanted to make. It took forrrrever…but I am happy with the result. It would make AMAZING french toast. Give it a shot!
2 1/4 teas. active dry yeast
1/3 cup (plus 1 teaspoon) honey
1/3 cup neutral oil
2 large eggs (plus 1 large yolk & one extra egg for egg wash)
1 1/2 teas. salt
4 1/4 cups all-purpose flour (I would use less)
2 medium baking apples (peeled, cored and in 1/2- to 3/4-inch chunks)
Whisk yeast and 1 teaspoon honey into 2/3 cup warm water and let stand until foamy (a few minutes). In the bowl of a stand mixture, whisk together yeast mixture, oil, remaining honey (1/3 cup), eggs and yolk. Switch to dough hook and add 4 cups flour and salt (at this point be careful…I found my dough had too much flour so next time I will add it gradually until the dough comes together, which will probably be only 4 cups, maybe even slightly less). Use dough hook on a moderate speed until it pulls all of the flour and wet ingredients together into a mass. Lower the speed and let the dough hook knead the dough for 5 minutes, until smooth, elastic and a little sticky (make sure not to add too much flour!). Transfer dough to large bowl, cover with plastic wrap and set aside for 1 hour, or until almost doubled in size.
After dough is done rising…add apples to dough. Check out the great photos of this step on Smitten Kitchen. Turn dough out onto a floured counter and gently press it down into a flat, oblong shape. Spread 2/3 of apple chunks over 1/2 of the flattened dough. Fold the other half over the apple chunks and press the dough down around them, flattening the now lumpy dough. Spread the remaining 1/3 apple chunks over half the folded dough. Fold the other half over the apples, pressing the dough down again. Fold the corners under with the sides of your hands and form the dough into a round. Upend your empty bowl over and set it aside for another 30 minutes.
Here is the fun part: weaving your bread! Again…see the Smitten Kitchen photos. Divide dough into 4 pieces. Roll and stretch each one as carefully as you can into a rope. If any apple chunks fall out as you form the ropes or at any other time in the forming of the loaf or risings, just poke them back in with your finger. Parts of my dough were sticky and gooey from the moisture in the apples…don’t worry…just keep going.
Arrange two strands in each direction, perpendicular to each other, like a plus sign. Kind of like closing a cardboard box in on itself. Weave them so that one side is over, and the other is under, where they meet. So, now you’ve got an 8-legged woven-headed octopus. Take the four legs that come from underneath the center and move them over the leg to their right, i.e. jumping it. Take those legs that were on the right and again, jump each over the leg before, this time to the left. If you had extra length to your ropes, you can repeat these left-right jumps until you run out of rope. Tuck the corners/odd bumps under the dough with the sides of your hands to form a round.
Transfer the dough to a parchment-covered heavy baking sheet or silpat. Beat egg until smooth and brush over challah. Let Challah rise AGAIN for another hour. After 45 minutes, preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Before baking, brush loaf one more time with egg wash and sprinkle with coarse sugar if you’re using it. Bake in middle of oven for 40 to 45 minutes. It should be beautifully bronzed; cover it with foil for the remainder of the baking time if it starts getting too dark.
TIP: The very best way to check for doneness in any bread but especially on like this where the wetness of the apples can slow down the baking time a bit, is with an instant read thermometer — the center of the loaf should be 195 degrees. ENJOY!
Recipe courtesy of Smitten Kitchen.
Let the Christmas baking begin! Over the weekend I felt the need to bake…as usual. I found these delicious scones online (oh pinterest, how I love you)...and they turned out great. Perfect cold morning treat.
2 cups flour
4 tablespoons Brown sugar
2 teas. Baking Powder
1/2 teas. Baking Soda
1/2 teas. Salt
2 teas. Cinnamon
1 1/2 teas. Ginger
1/4 teas. Nutmeg
1/4 cup softened butter
1 Egg Yolk (reserve the white)
1/3 cup Molasses
1/4 cup Milk
2 cups Powdered Sugar
2 teas. Milk or Cream
Preheat oven to 400. In a bowl, combine the flour, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, ginger, cinnamon and nutmeg. In another bowl, mix the egg yolk, molasses, butter and milk. Gently combine the two mixtures, being careful not to over mix (I incorporated with my hands into a ball). Flatten dough into a 1 inch thick portion and cut into triangles or circles. Arrange on a lightly greased baking sheet 1 inch apart or silpat sheet. Brush with the reserved egg white and sprinkle with sugar. Bake for 8-12 minutes and remove while still slightly soft. ENJOY!
Recipe courtesy of The Village Cook.
Coconut Berry Banana Bread
In constant pursuit of banana bread perfection, I made yet another variation! I realized I was out of butter and used one half cup of plain yogurt instead…THUS this turned out to be a much healthier version of the real thing. The difference was DELICIOUS! As usual, it was even better the next day. I love the caramelized bananas on top: this will be on all my banana breads from now on.
4 Mashed (RIPE) Bananas
1/2 cup White Sugar
1/2 cup Brown Sugar
1/2 cup Melted Butter (or substitute Applesauce or Plain Yogurt)
3/4 cup Shredded Unsweetened Coconut
3/4 cup Whole Wheat Flour
1 cup Unbleached White Flour
1 teas. Baking Soda
1 cup Huckleberries
1 Sliced Banana (for top + drizzled white sugar)
Preheat oven to 350, and prepare two greased loaf pans (or a single large one). Mash ripe bananas in a medium sized bowl. Add sugars, butter and egg, and mix well. Add in flour, baking soda and salt. Fold in fresh huckleberries, blueberries or fruit of choice. It is easiest to flash freeze them to assist in “folding”; otherwise the berries fall apart, so be gentle. For a final, fancy step thinly slice another banana (one that is not as brown), and arrange on the top of your loaves. Sprinkle with a little white sugar so they caramelize during baking. Bake for one hour (if using one pan) and 35 minutes if you split in two pans (or until tester comes out just clean). ENJOY!
(No Butter!) Banana Bread with Almond Butter Crumble Topping
I recently used one of my baking substitute recommendations to create a new banana bread recipe. Instead of butter, this recipe utilizes APPLESAUCE. It came out delicious! A bit on the “cakier” side, it was fab with the addition of the almond butter crumble topping. Fun fannie fact: cutting the butter saves 810 calories and 91 grams of fat. Just sayin’.
3 Ripe Bananas
1/2 cup Applesauce
1 cup Sugar
1 teas. Baking Soda
2 Cups Flour
Dash Salt (about ? teaspoon)
Almond Butter Crumb Topping
1/4 cup Almond Butter
1/4 cup Rolled Oats
1/4 cup Brown Sugar
3 Tablespoons Flour (heaping)
3/4 teas. Cinnamon
In a medium sized bowl, mash bananas. Mix in applesauce, sugar, baking soda, flour and salt. Pour batter into a greased loaf pan and bake at 350 Degrees for 40 minutes (until a tester comes out clean). If you are making the topping, melt almond butter in the microwave in a small bowl. Add in other “topping” ingredients in order and blend using your fingers until mixture becomes crumbled (i.e. crumble topping). Simple. ENJOY!
Pumpkin scones for a cold fall day. These are moist, buttery and not too sweet. The original recipe calls for a two glazes, but I prefer not to frost my scones so I left this out. Hot out of the oven with just a bit of butter or plain…they are DELICIOUS!
2 cups Flour
1/4 cup plus 3 Tablespoons Granulated Sugar
1 Tablespoon Baking Powder
1/2 teas. Salt
1/2 teas. Cinnamon
1/2 teas. Nutmeg
1/4 teas. Cloves
1/4 teas. Ginger
6 Tablespoons cold Butter (cut into small cubes)
1/2 cup canned Pumpkin
3 Tablespoons Half-and-Half
1 large Egg
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or silicone mat. In an electric mixer, stir together the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and ginger. Chop cold butter into small cubes and toss in with flour mixture, stirring with a fork to coat with the flour. Mix this on medium-low speed until the texture resembles coarse cornmeal, with the butter pieces no larger than small peas. You can also use a pastry chopper, but it just takes longer.
In a separate bowl, whisk together the pumpkin, half-and-half and egg. Fold wet ingredients into dry ingredients with a wooden spoon, and form the dough into a ball with your hands (careful not to handle too much—DO NOT KNEAD!). Pat out dough onto a lightly floured surface and form into a 1-inch thick rectangle about 4 inches by 12 inches (mine was shy of 12 inches). Use a large knife to slice the dough making three equal portions. Cut each of the portions in an X pattern (four pieces) so you end up with 12 small triangular slices of dough. Place on prepared baking sheet. Bake for 14-16 minutes, or until light brown. Place on wire rack to cool. ENJOY!
Recipe slightly adapted from Sweet Peas Kitchen.
Perfect Pumpkin Bread
Flour all over me. Pumpkin in my hair. Dishes piling up. I need an assistant. I was in a cooking frenzy last Sunday, working on red sauce and dreaming up something pumpkiny. Sadly (*I kid*)...I settled on this dependable pumpkin bread recipe to ring in the soggy fall weather. Even with a modified recipe, it did not disappoint. If you can exercise EXTREME self-control and keep this bread around for a few days the top gets stickier and stickier. It is my new favorite, moist quick-bread.
3 1/4 cups Flour
2 teas. Baking Soda
1 1/4 teas. Salt
1 teas. Cinnamon
1 teas. Nutmeg
1/4 teas. Ginger
1/2 cup Butter (unsalted and melted)
3 cups sugar
1/2 cup Milk (I used soy milk)
2/3 cup Water
15 oz. can Pumpkin (roughly two cups)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour 2 loaf pans, muffin tins or Bundt pan. In a medium bowl, mix dry ingredients together and set aside. In an electric mixer, cream butter (melt it and let cool before beginning) and sugar, adding the eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Add in milk, water and pumpkin. Finally, incorporate dry ingredients slowly, making sure to mix thoroughly. Pour into desired pan and bake! If using a bundt or loaf pan it will take between 45 - 60 minutes. Remove from oven when a toothpick inserted comes out just clean. ENJOY!
NOTE: The original recipe calls for one full cup of oil. For your heart’s sake, I modified the recipe and substituted 1/2 cup butter and 1/2 cup milk for the oil. Okay. YES, I still used butter! Baby steps. Next time, I will try with 2/3 cup apple sauce and 1/3 cup milk or sour cream, for an even healthier version!
Ovenland’s Original Banana Bread
Banana bread is one of my favorite things to make. It is easy, gets rid of unsightly bananas, and freezes incredibly well. I came up with this recipe a few years ago, and it has been my go-to ever since.
4 ripe Bananas
1 stick Butter (unsalted & melted)
1 cup Granulated Sugar
1 3/4 cups Flour
1 teas. Baking Soda
Salt (just a dash)
Optional: 1 cup Oats (decreasing flour to 1 ½ cups) and 1 cup Walnuts (chopped).
When I say “ripe” bananas, I mean disgusting, black-spotted, you just saved them from a nest of fruit flies, RIPE. Mash these suckers thoroughly, and cream butter and sugar together. Add bananas and egg. Dump in flour and salt. If you like a “heartier” banana bread decrease flour to 1 ½ cups and add 1 cup rolled oats with 1 cup chopped walnuts. I included a picture of the the recipe made into muffins, however I traditionally make it in a (greased) Bundt pan or two (greased) loaf pans (recipe will yield two small loaves). If you do not have four ripe bananas on hand, use three bananas and grate an apple in or add ? cup apple sauce to substitute.
Bake at 350 degrees for approximately 40 - 45 minutes until a tester comes out pretty much clean (the muffins and two loaves may cook much faster). I slightly under cook the bread and let it set overnight. Banana bread gets better with age! ENJOY!
FYI: If you borrow this recipe and slather butter on a slice of this bread…you may be banned from this site. Okay, maybe not banned…but seriously, who does that?