Showing posts with label Baking powder. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Baking powder. Show all posts

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Kahlua-Banana-Nutella Bundt Cake

After announcing that I'm back on my last post; which was nearly two weeks ago...a lot has happened in my personal life...although, one thing that is really positive is that my eye is healing very nicely after the Retinal surgery, and I'm starting to see better, but it will take at least six months for a full recovery of my eye sight.

Do you ever feel so overwhelmed with things happening around you...especially in your family during the holidays?

I had an urgent and important visit from my younger sister from out of town, staying for nearly a week, just focusing on her issues/problems...forgetting about my own (one of the reasons for not posting)...then, came the horrific tragic news about about the Sandy Hook Elementary School with a gunman on a 'killing spree'...which totally shocked, and paralyzed all of us in the nation, and especially in Connecticut where it took place. I am numb, and feel horrible, sad, angry, can't stop crying for the little 'angels' (I have 2 grandchildren their age) and adults whose lives have been taken so tragically...leaving their family 'heartbroken' forever!

So horrifying, and gut wrenching, that I can't begin to describe my feelings. I could go into a long theory of 'gun control' and 'mental illness' which is already a call for HELP~ I could ask, like a lot of people have asked?

"Why does God allow innocent young children to die in such horror?" "Where was God when this horrific massacre took place?" God established humanity with 'FREE will'...we can choose to do right, or wrong, evil...or good; but there are consequences to our choices. God did intervene...otherwise there would have been more death

We blame firearms, God, and our government, but never blame ourselves as a whole. We cannot ignore mental illness, and need to focus more and getting the help for our children early in life when this kind of problem is detected.

Although some bloggers have posted a 'Silent Monday'...we cannot be silent on any day, when it comes to 'gun control' in our society which has gone out of control in our country. We should have a 'moment of silence' in our own way, or together to honor the 'little angels' and adults that have gone on to their final resting place...so, so sad; our hearts and spirits are broken, and Christmas will never be the same!

 I totally re-created this wonderful bundt cake just from 'tweaking' my banana bread recipe with 1/4 cup of Kahlua liquor; you can substitute 1/4 cup strong coffee in place of the Kahlua. Swirl in 1/2 cup Nutella in the batter, but don't mix it in entirely. Also, be sure to add 1 teaspoon baking powder, and 1 teaspoon baking soda.

 I wanted to link this delicious bundt cake to #BundtAMonth for December to Lora's blog...so sorry; I just don't have the time or energy to do this right now...also posting my recipe. If you would like this recipe I created, do let me know, and I will post it later!

Thank you for all your sweet and caring comments, I am so ashamed for not even visiting my dear friends' blogs, not even my own daughter's @Cake Duchess!

I love you all, dear friends...please forgive me for my silence and 'aloofness.'




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Saturday, October 6, 2012

Pumpkin-Banana-Cranberry Mini Bundt Cakes #BundtaMonth

Notice something different?...I figured out how to use 'text' in my photos! So thrilled to start out for the #BundtaMonth Challenge, and the theme for October is Pumpkin!

Vintage 'Vera' table cloth, (brand new $1.99) ...a 'thrift find' from Goodwill
Hi everyone! I have so much to share with you starting with this post...which is so exciting because, it is the month of October, a very favorite month of mine which spells FALL, AUTUMN...HALLOWEEN, the crisp cool fall weather...of course; I'm not talking about S. Florida, but in our northern states, and everywhere else where they celebrate the beautiful fall season. I mentioned before that this is one of my all-time favorite season with the beautiful changing of the gorgeous autumn colors of the leaves...weaving its magical bright orange, yellow, brown, burgundy colors. So mesmerizing and enchanting, that I would want to enjoy this for more than just a short time!

I've been wanting to link up with such great 'blog hops' ...but for me, the easiest ones are the ones where I can link up whatever I have on my blog for that chosen day...but as for the #BundtaMonth link, I cannot resist it not just because my daughter Lora and Anuradha are the partners in crime of this fabulous 'bundt' challenge...and I just happen to love bundt cakes. I have been baking bundt cakes since the seventies when they were so ultra-popular.

I still have my original dark orange color seventies bundt pan along with a couple newer ones, and an awesome mini heavy duty pan, a 'thrift find'...which I love to bake in. I didn't want to take time browsing for a recipe, so I just used my 'trusted' basic banana bread recipe that I have memorized, modified it, and added the pumpkin and the fresh/frozen cranberries from Whole Foods.

What is #BundtaMonth all about?

Here’s the challenge:
Anuradha (Baker's Street) and Lora (Cake Duchess) will pick an ingredient and announce it the first week of every month. All you Bundt loving bakers need to do is use your imagination on how you’d like to incorporate it and bake a Bundt – mini Bundt or large Bundt – and link it up to our blogs throughout the month. It's that simple!

They decided to bake with pumpkin in their October Bundts.

If you're out of ideas and are looking for inspiration you should check out their Pinterest board that has 100+ bundt cake recipes.

Pumpkin-Banana-Cranberry Mini Bundt Cakes
recipe by; Elisabeth

1 cup all-purpose flour
 (I used King Arthur unbleached all-purp)
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 can (15 oz) pumpkin (I used Libby's
2 ripe bananas
2 large eggs
1/4 cup vegetable, or canola oil
1 bag (12 oz) fresh, or frozen cranberries
(you can use dried cranberries, in place of fresh
or frozen...1 cup)
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg (I used a sm. amt. of fresh grated)
3 or 4 pieces crystallized ginger
(you can use 1/2 teaspoon powdered ginger instead)





Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Get 3 bowls ready for your ingredients. (1 large, 1 medium, and 1 small)
On the top right photo...in the large bowl,
add the canned 15 oz. pumpkin puree, the 2 sugars,
the cinnamon, the grated nutmeg, the 2 bananas, and mash coarsely with a potato masher.

In a small bowl, add the 2 eggs, and 1/4 cup vegetable, or canola oil, and whisk with a fork.






In the medium bowl, combine the flours, salt, baking powder, and baking soda. Mix together.






Add the cranberries, and the crystallized ginger to the flours and mix gently together. The importance of this method is; so that they don't sink to the bottom of the batter when baking.









Now, you can add half of the fruit and flour mixture to the pumpkin mixture, in the large bowl. Also the the egg mixture to that, and fold in gently.
Now, finish adding the second half of the fruit and flour mixture, and fold that into the large bowl, again.

Finish, by gently incorporating everything, so that you don't smash the cranberries.









Spray a a mini bundt pan, and a 6 cup muffin pan with cooking spray, and add the batter carefully, about 3/4 full  in the bundt pan, and halfway full in the muffin pan

 Bake at 375 degrees for 20 minutes...remove the muffin pan, which will be done...Lower temperature to 350 degrees F. and finish baking the mini bundts for another 20 to 25 minutes (total 45 minutes for the bundt cake) Cool on metal rack for about 15 minutes before inverting the bundt cakes.








As you can see, I've worked very hard on this challenge, planning, working on re-constructing the actual 'memorized' banana bread recipe from 'scratch' taking step-by-step photos...trying to capture a good natural light with a 'speck of sun'...virtually, never using 'props'...just 'thrift finds' items I have on hand.

I almost forgot the glaze recipe!

2 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon light rum
1 teaspoon (maybe 2, if needed)


Mix all the ingredients with a fork, making sure there are no lumps, and to have it at a fairly thick consistency. (finger testing)...making sure it stick to your finger when you test it. Drizzle on with a teaspoon, since these are small cakes.

Just look and see how incredibly moist is the texture. Your taste buds are in for a huge surprise when you bit into the sour taste of the cranberries, and the sweet tangy taste of the crystallized ginger.

As for kids under 6...I recommend using dry cranberries, that have been soaked in boiling water for a few minutes before mixing it in the batter. (my little 6yr. granddaughter literally picked out each cranberries before she ate the cake, which she did like, but not approved of the sour taste, which actually mingles with the sweet cake and a surprise of the slightly spicy crystallized ginger!
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Monday, August 20, 2012

Mango-Strawberry Cobbler

Some cobbler have toppings that are actually as thick as biscuits, but to me it's patches of a crusty dough that has a cake-like flavor on the inside. I've been making all kinds of cobblers that is so easy, and so nice with fresh fruit that you want to use up.
Although, I did just state in my previous recent post that mango season is over in S. Florida...it really is over! This was the best mango season for us in years, and we were so blessed with all the abundance of these lovely tropical fruit, that we just had to use it in so many ways.

Last week, the final 4 mangoes fell down from the top of the tree and they were almost too ripe. Didn't want to use them for smoothies...it would be so selfish when we had smoothies just about every day for one month. I have not made a cobbler, since about one year ago, and it's time that I make one.

I made the cobbler this afternoon, and I was so very happy that we had beautiful sunshine today, but very, very, hot. Today was the first day of school for most of the kids in our area, and both my grandchildren started back! The weekend also went so nice with perfect Florida weather...rain again, in the late afternoon, but during the day was gorgeous and sunny!

Cobbler has got to be the easiest and fastest dessert to make...you just have to remember, that it starts out with 1 cup of flour, a little sugar, dash of salt, and don't forget the baking powder, and of course, a little butter, moisten it with either a little bit of milk to form a dough, or a little over 1 cup to be able to drop the dough on the fruit, and bake for 35 minutes...Let me tell you, the best way to eat this amazing cobbler; while it's still warm. This was gone so fast that I must say I will be making it more often now, with different fruits!
 I wanted to show you close up how juicy the fruits are (I have a little secret for that)...and for the cobbler, you can see the thickness, which is just right, and see how moist it is, yet has a crusty top!
This is my favorite photo...Gabby enjoying her cobbler, for an afternoon snack. She had her first day of school, 6th grade, and she came home so happy...all smiles, and such positive energy and lots of stories.If you want to make your family happy, with the most perfect, easy, afternoon snack...make them a fresh fruit cobbler...they will love it, and 'thank you' for it!  Now, on to the recipe...click on read more...(as if you didn't know it!?)

linking to: Hearth and Soul @ Zesty South Indian Kitchen

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Paula Deen's Banana Nut Bread...and Awards

If you're feeling sluggish in the mid-afternoon, here's a very nice "pick me up" ...a slice of Banana Nut Bread, and a cold glass of organic low-fat milk. Of course, you can substitute it for a nice steaming cup of tea, or coffee...the choice is yours!
You"re probably wondering why I chose Paula Deen...the "queen of fatty foods" ...
Is it because it's FAT TUESDAY?...would that be appropriate for someone who is still on the Weight Watchers program?...or just recently finding out that she has type 2 diabetes, that she had for three years already, and we just found out!

It's really true, that we don't have to cook like that, with all the butter and fat, she is not encouraging us to cook that way, but it certainly is very tempting to try those recipes. I have found an easier method...just cut down on the fat, and make it a lighter version!
I found a super great thrift find, recently, at Goodwill. Paula Deen's first cookbook, before she became a famous food network star. It was copyrighted in 1997. The price, as you can see it was $1.29 soft cover book, filled with her early famous recipes. She owned a small restaurant at the time, in Savannah Georgia, with her two sons working there. Very cozy, simple, and down-home good Southern foods. I was really impressed with the Banana Bread recipe, and would like to share it with you. As far as for points value...it has to be at least 3 points pr slice...compared to 2 points with the WW Banana Bread, which I will also make soon. I lightened it up a bit, but I must admit, this was an incredible Banana Bread, enjoyed by all!

Linking to: Full Plate Thursday, @Miz Helen's Country Cottage
                Thursday Favorite Things Blog Hop, @Katherines Corner
                Food Photography @Crisp Photoworks

Banana Nut Bread
The Lady and Sons, by Paula Deen

1/2 cup Crisco shortening
(I used 1/3 cup vegetable oil)
1 cup sugar (I used 3/4 cup)
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt (I used 1/2 teaspoon)
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
2 eggs beaten
3 ripe bananas mashed
1/3 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Cream shortening and sugar. (whisk oil, and sugar, if you're using oil.) Stir together flour, salt, baking powder, and baking soda and add to creamed mixture.






Add remaining ingredients; mix well.







Pour into a well greased pan. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes.
( I baked mine for 30 minutes on 350 degrees, and lowered the temperature to 325, for an additional 25 minutes.)












Friday, February 17, 2012

Rajma...and WW Corn Bread


Just recently, I was browsing through some food blogs of friends that I haven't visited for a while, and my eyes
got caught on a simple spicy bean dish...an Indian spicy vegetarian chili that inspired me so much...
knowing that I had all the spices, and it's a Weight Watchers approved dish, as well, plus the fact that I truly love, spicy foods!
When something really inspires me that someone makes, I usually leave a comment saying that "I would love to try this"..."I'm going to make this"..."I'm bookmarking it to print and copy the recipe"...how many of us say these over and over again?...only to just put it aside and forget about it! Nancy, and her husband Veejay are the authors of the Kitchen Gypsies, and I mentioned to my friend Nancy, that I would like to make this dish, and I actually did, in my slow cooker...a huge pot of it! So thanks for the inspiration, Nancy!

 Do visit their blog for the recipe, and browse through for some amazing authentic Indian, and American cuisine, that they have to offer.
Points per serving with rice: 10

Linking to: Cookbook Sundays @ Couscous-Consciosness

When I get inspired about a recipe...especially if I have the ingredients on hand, I could hardly wait to "jump" on it to make it, especially when it doesn't require an electric mixer, or a long time for preparation, and baking time. I can honestly say that this Weight Watchers Corn Bread recipe is the BEST by far, and guilt free light, super moist, and delicious of any corn bread or corn muffins I have made. It's pure, and simple...no butter, no fat, or oil added, just pure buttermilk!
Just look at the beautiful color, texture, and natural thickness of these healthy and delicious red kidney beans, soaked, and then cooked for several hours in the slow cooker! I served them over Thai Jasmin rice...amazing, spicy, and totally comforting and satisfying!


You can see the lines on the slow-cooker crock pot where it started to cook, cooking down and getting thicker.












The next day, I served it with my cornbread, which is a Weight Watchers recipe, that I will share with you.
I topped the Rajma with a generous spoonful of Lebni, which is a thick Middle Eastern Kefir, that can only be purchased in a Middle Eastern market, which we have here, locally, in West Palm Beach.






Recipe for the WW Cornbread...click on!

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Best Potato Latkes...and end of Holidays

As the holidays are winding down, and we're facing the new year, we can reflect back to last year, at this time, already thinking about the changes we are going to make in our lives, our homes, our friends, our bad habits, and start our diets for the hundredth time!...Yeah, sure! I do this every year, and keep promising to go back to Weight Watchers where I actually successfully lost 35 lbs, and kept it off for about 3 years, but gradually gained it back...and then some! So now, I will try the Weight Watchers online, and don't have to go to those boring meetings!
Well, let me tell you...it's a good thing that the year is ending, because December is the last month we can "pig out" with all the good food, and desserts...never say "never" to latkes, at least once a year, which is at Hanukkah! I promise you that I stand by my "best potato latkes recipe!"...it's not even a recipe it's really from all the failures of trying out different ways, but the best kept secret, is adding equal amount of Matzo Meal to your flour, a small amount of baking powder, and to make sure your grated potatoes do not turn brown, adding a tablespoon of whit distilled vinegar to the water. I will be glad to show you the directions, and promise that your latkes will come out crispy, light, and you don't even have to blot any excess grease if you use parchment paper...honest!

Having a 10 or 12 inch well seasoned cast iron skillet is another helpful utensil, that I feel every kitchen should have. It has so many uses, and will never, ever wear out....the older it gets if it's treated properly, the more use you get out of it. Just look at the fresh clean vegetable oil bubbling away, and the potatoes so light, and crispy. Never overcrowd the pan, or it will slow down the cooking process!

Best Potato Latkes
recipe by; Elisabeth


For single batch:


4-5 medium Russet (baking) potatoes, or your favorite
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup Matzo Meal
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
salt and pepper to taste
2 eggs lightly beaten
1 medium onion chopped
vegetable, or canola oil, for frying
1 Tbsp. white vinegar
In a large bowl add water, and add the peeled potatoes and vinegar.
(you can use double batch by doubling the potatoes, 8 to 10, but it's less work with half the amount)
Cut the potatoes in half lenghtwise and in a food processor feed them right into the water, just like it's show in the photo.
Note: The starchier the water gets, but not dark, the crispier and lighter the latkes will be.





This is how the grated potatoes will look in the water...all starchy, cloudy, and beautiful. That's how you want it.














Now, you're ready to put the potatoes with the liquid, and strain it. Rinse it if you like, but you don't have to. The important thing, is to squeeze out all the liquid.








Add the potatoes back into the cleaned out bowl, and add all the ingredients, (except the oil, and vinegar)

With clean hands, or wear plastic gloves, mix together all the ingredients to combine well.










With a small ice cream scooper, scoop out portions, and add to the preheated heavy skillet, if you don't have cast iron skillet.











You can easily scoop out as much as it can fit, but make sure when you drop the scoop, do not touch it for a couple minutes, fry them over med-high heat, without disturbing them.










You can now flatten them down with a spatula, and turn them over to fry until lightly golden. Have your oven ready, at 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet, or two, with parchment paper. When all the latkes are ready to be taken out of the frying pan, just line them up on the parchment lined baking sheet, and bake for an additional 25 minutes, turning them once.

You should have about 12 small latkes. Serve them with apple sauce, and sour cream!
Yields about 4- 6 servings



When you see the jagged, lacy edges, is how you know it is perfect, lightly golden...no need to blot with paper towel, no grease is left on the parchment paper!
The latkes are also really delicious with brisket, or pot roast, you can serve them with chicken, or just on the side. Every one loves this, especially young children, and adults alike!





Linking to:
Thursday Favorite Things Blog Hop 16 @ Katherines Corner
Full Plate Thursday 12-29-11 @ Miz Helen's Country Cottage 

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Chocolate Drop Cookies...Cookbook Sundays!

Please don't be too judgemental with these yummy Chocolate Drop Cookies, made by me...but totally designed,and decorated by my "loves of my life"...2 of my 4 grandchildren! Luca (boy w/long hair) and Gabby (not shown in photo)...and I assure you, it was made with love, and lots of fun, which will be remembered for fond memories, for years to come!
I am so happy to join once again...Cookbook Sundays... now hosted by Sue!

Linking to: Cookbook Sundays #2 @Couscous and Consciousness

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Orange Almond Mandelbrot...a.k.a Jewish Biscotti!

To think that I was going to skip making cookies for the holidays...when this morning, I called my daughter Lora, and said..."I want to make some biscotti...but you know, that  my kitchen is way too small, so I will come over to
your house and will make it there! Of course, she agreed, as she always does, because she likes to see me out of my "rut"...even though I live on the beach, but I get into those "holiday blues" just before the holidays, and I tell you...You got to snap out of it!!!...seriously! Life is too short...life is GOOD! It's what you make of it!
You want to feel sorry for this person...for that person...their sad situation, but when you seriously think about it, you really have to think about "yourself!"...You have "issues" just as the next person does...except, you deal with it much better than they do! They make you feel, that you have to help them, it's your responsibility!...enough said, just check out my amazing Orange Almond Mandelbrot (Jewish Biscotti) for the holidays!

Linking my Orange Almond Manderbrot to: Full Plate Thursday 12-8-11 @ Miz Helen's Country Cottage