Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Banana Bread

Do these bananas look yummy to you?  No?!  

How about now?  Fine!

I know you think they are tasty looking now!  What do you mean no?

Alrighty then... so we do a little of this.  Add a little of that.  


Put it in these.

Apply a bit of heat and wham-o bam-o thank you mam-o!

(Don't make fun of my lopsided mega muffins!  I had a loaner stove that had clearly not been leveled lol!)

Banana Bread

by My Sister's Table
adapted from King Arthur Flour recipe

makes one 9" x 5" loaf


4 ounces unsalted butter, at room temperature
5 ounces light brown sugar, firmly packed
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
12 ounces peeled & mashed ripe bananas
2 1/4 ounces apricot jam
3 ounces honey
2 large eggs
6 1/2 ounces King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
3 ounces King Arthur White Whole Wheat Flour
3 ounces chopped walnuts, divided


Preheat the oven to 325°F. Lightly grease a 9" x 5" loaf pan.

Using your stand mixer with a paddle attachment combine the butter, sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking soda, baking powder, and salt, beating until smooth.

Add the mashed bananas, jam, honey, and eggs, again beating until smooth.

Add the flour and 2 ounces of the walnuts, stirring just until smooth. Scrape down the bowl and give it a finish stir with your spatula.

Scoop the batter into your loaf pan, smooth the top then sprinkle with a few chopped nuts - the ounce that you had left over. 

Bake at 325 degrees for 45 minutes, then gently lay a piece of aluminum foil across the top, to prevent over-browning.

Bake for an additional 20(ish) minutes until a long toothpick or cake tester inserted into the center comes out with just a few crumbs or clean. The tester shouldn't show any sign of uncooked batter. If it does, bake the bread an additional 5 minutes, or until it tests done.

Cool for 10 minutes in the pan, then remove it from the pan, and cool it completely on a rack.

This bread freezes well so make some for later or to share with family and friends!

: )

Friday, April 19, 2013

Raspberry and Almond Streamliner Cake

~We got a new toy.... a GoPro camera.  We use it for our off-roading but I thought what the hey why not try using it for my blog.  Hubster set up the camera on my counter before I started on the custard and away I went.  Well it worked ok.  Not great and I think my other camera works for this better.  I know that so many think that a blog is all about the pictures but I am not a photographer.  I am a chef that will type up my creations to share with y'all and add some hopefully decent pictures.~

The April choice for the Cake Slice Bakers is the Lemon and Almond Streamliner Cake from Vintage Cakes.  My son DJ is not a citrus lover so I asked what berry he would like and he picked raspberry. Snap of the fingers and we do raspberry!  

But I get ahead of myself.... One ingredient called for in this recipe is almond paste.  Having used the store bought almond paste once before I wanted to try making my own almond paste.  It is really simple to make if you have a food processor.

Measure in your almonds then send it for a grind.

Add in your sugar, egg white and any flavoring you would like to add.

Process until it smooths out into a paste.

My recipe made enough for the cake plus extra.  I stored the rest in 2 ounce bags for future use.

Next up making a raspberry puree to replace the lemon in our custard.  I put the thawed raspberries into the blender - didn't want the food processor to have all the fun - and gave it a whirl.

Put it into a strainer and worked through the puree, leaving behind a lot of seeds.

I simmered the seedless puree for about 5 minutes then set aside so the puree could cool.
Time to make the custard.  This is a pretty standard custard.  It needs to be made a few hours prior to use so keep that in mind before making this cake.
Whisk together your egg yolks, sugar, raspberry puree and corn starch.  Heat your milk and slowing whisk together then cook over low heat until thick and bubbling.  Strain the custard and then whisk in your butter piece by piece.  Save your butter wrapper!!

 Cover the custard with plastic wrap, laid directly on top, refrigerate at least two hours before using.

Move onto making the cake.  A simple buttermilk single layer cake with the additional of almond paste.
Prepare your pan .... use the wrapper from your butter cube that you saved to butter your pan.  Fold your parchment paper while thinking about making paper snowflakes as a child (or a couple of weeks ago) and cut your circle to fit into the bottom of your pan.  Rub it down a bit then flip it over and set it.

Cream together the butter, sugar and almond paste.  Once this is relatively smooth, there will be bits of the paste throughout, add in your eggs and vanilla.  

In a separate bowl sift/whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt.  Measure out your buttermilk.   Mix in your dry ingredients and the buttermilk, alternating until just mixed.  Using your spatula scrape down the sides and give it a final mix.

Pour into your prepared pan, smack it onto your counter a couple of times to release any large air bubbles and bake it.  

Once out of the oven allow to cool in the pan for 30 minutes then turn out onto a rack until completely cool, leaving the parchment on.  

When you are ready to top it with your custard remove the parchment - 
yes I am saying this because somewhere out there one of us - not me! - will plop that custard right down onto the parchment.

Give the sides a quick coat of the custard to help seal the edges.  The top with the remaining custard.

There you have it!  Ready to serve.  

If you don't serve it right away be sure to refrigerate the cake until you do so.

Lemon Raspberry and Almond Streamliner Cake adapted from the recipe found in the cookbook Vintage Cakes.

The recipe can be found online in several spots including on Oprah's site.

Almond Paste
by My Sister's Table

1 1/2 cups blanched almonds
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 large egg whites, room temperature
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
a pinch of sea salt

Pour almonds into the food processor and process until finely ground.
Add the sugar and pulse a couple of times.  Whisk together the egg white, vanilla, and salt.  With the processor running pout the egg mixture onto the almonds and process until a smooth paste forms. 

Use the paste right away or place in a an air tight container and store in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.  Bring to room temperature before use.  If you decide to freeze the paste it may become a bit crumbly but will work fine once back to room temperature.

Printable recipe here.

*Side note - if I make the custard this way again I think I may add a drop of red food coloring to it to brighten the color.  It turned out of but a bit flat looking.

The cake was smooth with a nice fine crumb that we have come to expect from the buttermilk cake.  The almond would make a nice complement to the lemon.  We were split on whether the raspberry went with it - we all liked the cake and we liked the raspberry custard but not necessarily together.  
I say fine for them!  More cake for me! *wink*


Visit the other Cake Slice Bakers here.
The CSBs are now on Facebook ~ check them out here and be sure to 'like' the page.


Sunday, April 07, 2013

Publishing recipes....

Just a quick note...
I am not adding the recipes for the cakes baked out of the Vintage Cakes cookbook.  I have provided a link to where you can purchase the book.   Please know that I am not doing this because I get a kick back or any profit whatsoever.  I give credit where it is due... if published online I link to it, if published in a book I link to that too.  


Honey Bee Cake

The March choice for the Cake Slice Bakers is the Honey Bee Cake from Vintage Cakes.  I was looking forward to making this cake because it sounded so ....'old-fashion' to me.  Timing happened to line up with my Aunt Lynn's birthday party so I offered up this simple yet tasty treat for her dessert.

I decided to make the cake in a springform pan for ease of serving.  The recipe calls for a standard cake pan that you have to do a double turn to get the cake onto a serving platter.  The springform just sounded so much easier to me.

In my book honey = sticky so I buttered the pan all over just to play it safe.

Nothing fancy on the making of this cake.  Cream together the butter, sugar, honey then add the eggs and vanilla.  

Next mix in the dry ingredients and buttermilk; alternating between the two until everything is incorporated but don't over mix this batter.

Spread the batter into your prepared pan.  Tap it flatly on the counter a couple of times to release any large air pockets.

While the cake is baking you want to make your honey glaze.  I found that making it too soon meant I turned it off and the butter separated a bit as it cooled.  When it came time to pour onto the cake I had to reheat the mixture.  Next time I would wait until the cake was almost ready to make the glaze.

Once the cake is just shy of being done pull it out of the oven.  Poke holes all over with a skewer, pour half of the honey glaze over the top.  Do this slowly so that you don't end up with puddles on the edges.  Distribute your nuts all over the top and pour the rest of the glaze onto the nuts.  The recipe called for a heaping 1/2 cup but I used closer to a cup of nuts.

Put the cake back into the oven for about 5 more minutes.  Cool for about an hour... this cake is served best slightly warm.

The Honey Bee Cake recipe can be found in the cookbook Vintage Cakes.

The group really liked this cake.  I was told that it had a comfy 'old fashion' taste. ;)
I will enjoy trying this with different nuts and honey flavors.

Happy Birthday Aunt Lynn!


Visit the other Cake Slice Bakers here.
The CSBs are now on Facebook ~ check them out here and be sure to 'like' the page.