Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Banana-Oatmeal Pancakes

My kids LOVE pancakes (what kid doesn't) so I like to mix it up a little every once and awhile and do something a little different...and they LOVE these just as much :)

2 c. flour
2 T. sugar
4 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 c. rolled oats
1 tsp. cinnamon
2 eggs
2 c. milk
1/4 c. oil
2 bananas, 1 mashed & 1 chopped

Mix together dry ingredients with a whisk.  Add eggs, milk and oil all at once an mix until just combined.  Add mashed bananas, try not to over mix and then gently stir in chopped bananas.
Spoon onto a hot, lightly greased griddle and cooked until puffed, bubbly & light golden brown, flip and continue to cook until light golden brown on the second side.  Keep warm in a low oven, covered with foil, until ready to serve.

If your wondering, for the "usual" pancakes omit the oats, cinnamon, & bananas.

Some of my favorite pancake add-ins:

*halved, pitted fresh cherries
*pecans & a little brown sugar
*whole wheat...substitute 3/4 c. of the flour for wheat flour
*mini chocolate chips & banana slices (pour batter onto griddle the drop bananas & chocolate chips on)
*finely chopped apples & cinnamon

What are your favorites??

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Grilling Season....

I love that it's warm enough to grill now...during the summer it's the way I cook the most--so watch for lots of great grilling recipes :)
Here's what we grilled last night...
Roasted Red Pepper Stuffed Turkey Burgers
w/ Roasted Red Pepper Mayo
Grilled Fingerling Potatoes
Start with the potatoes:
about 1 lb. red fingerling potatoes, scrubbed & halved
olive oil
kosher salt
about 1 1/2 tsp. dried thyme leaves
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
*In a large bowl place potatoes & drizzle with olive oil (a tablespoon or two), sprinkle generously with salt & pepper, add the thyme & garlic powder. Toss to coat.
*Grill on a preheated grill. Here's how I like to to it...start on the top rack (or in indirect heat) so that the potatoes get cooked through without getting too crispy. When the burgers are almost done move over more direct heat until crispy & browned. (Or arrange in a single layer on a baking sheet & bake at 350 until browned).
These are so good (and there are very few potatoes that I like). :)
For the turkey burgers & mayo:
1 lb. ground lean turkey
1 (12 oz) jar roasted red peppers (divided)
1/2 to 3/4 grated mozzarella cheese
kosher salt
1 c. mayonnaise (light works great)
juice of 1/2 lemon
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
lettuce leafs
sliced tomatoes
toasted hamburger buns
*Drain red peppers, remove about half from the jar & coarsely chop. Get your mozzarella ready in a bowl or on your cutting board (so there is no cross contamination with the turkey).
*Cut your package of turkey into fourths, then each 4th in half. Take one section of turkey and flatten into a thin patty, top with some peppers and mozzarella. Flatten a second patty & top your first patty with it, pinch the sides and mold into a patty...work with it and you will be able to remove the seams until it looks like a regular burger. Repeat with remaining 3 burgers.
*Move your burgers to a preheated grill. Cook until each side is golden brown & turkey is cooked through.
*Meanwhile, in a blender add the remaining peppers, salt & pepper to taste, garlic powder, lemon juice & mayo. Puree until smooth, transfer to a bowl & refrigerate until ready to use. It will be thin, it thickens back up a little as it chills...it also makes way more than you will need for your burgers, try it on sandwiches (it's even good as a dip) ;).
*Spread each side of the bun with a little mayo, then layer burger, lettuce & tomatoes.
Enjoy! It's one of my favorite burgers...
& you forget your eating turkey :)

Monday, April 12, 2010

The Best Banana Bread...at least I think so :)

1/2 c. shortening
1 c. granulated sugar
1/2 c. brown sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
1/4 tsp. baking powder
3/4 tsp. baking soda
3/4 tsp salt (a little less if you use kosher)
2 cups flour
3-4 bananas, mashed
1/4 c. milk
1 cup chopped walnuts or pecans (opt.)
Cream together shortening, sugars, eggs and vanilla. Add baking powder, soda salt and 1 cup flour, mix well. Add bananas (sometimes I don't even mash them---just throw them in & mix well) and milk. Add remaining cup of flour and mix well, scrape down the sides of the bowl to make sure all is combined. Stir in nuts.
Pour into 2 greased (medium size) loaf pans & bake at 350 for 30 to 45 minutes. If browning too quickly tent with aluminum foil. Also makes great muffins (makes about 24 small muffins)--reduce the cooking time to about 20-30 minutes or until tester comes out clean.
Cool completely & wrap in plastic wrap....banana bread is always better the second day...trust me--it's worth the wait :)

Sunday, April 11, 2010

The Farmer's Market is Back!

Yesterday we took a little trip to the FARMER'S MARKET :) I am sooo happy that it is back....even if right now it is just plants & flowers...soon it will be full of fresh veggies & fruit (I plan on taking some pictures & sharing with you our little farmers market then).

But..I did get a huge bunch of LILACS...which I lOvE...I would have loved to get some veggie plants--I wish I had a non-shady area of my yard to grow a garden...and that I didn't have a black thumb :)...maybe someday.

**a great Banana Bread Recipe coming tomorrow :)

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Operation: Easter Candy Detour

I have a problem...I like an assortment of Easter candies...which ultimately leads to an extreme amount of candy hanging around my house...here's my solution (for at least 3 types of the candy) :) Bake a few...then save the rest of the dough in the freezer for later...

#1 Chocolate Malt Cookies (Robin Eggs)

1/2 c. butter, softened

1 c. sugar

1/4 c. cocoa powder

1 tsp. vanilla

1/2 tsp. baking soda

1/4 tsp. kosher salt

1 3/4 c. flour

1/3 c. + 1 Tbs. milk

1 c. broken robin egg (or other malty candy)

Cream together butter & sugar. Add cocoa powder, mix well. Mix in vanilla & remaining dry ingredients. Add milk and mix well, scraping down the sides of the bowl as you go. Stir in candy pieces.

Line a baking sheet with a Silpat or parchment paper (when the candies melt, they can get sticky) and drop batter by tablespoons onto prepared sheet. Bake at 350 for 8 minutes. Cool on the tray for a few minutes, then transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely.

#2 Oatmeal Peanut butter Chunk Cookies (Reese's Eggs)

3/4 c. butter, softened

1 c. brown sugar

1/2 c. sugar

2 eggs

1 tsp. baking powder

1/4 tsp. baking soda

1/8 tsp. salt

1 1/2 tsp. vanilla

1 3/4 c. flour

2 c. rolled oats

1 c. chopped peanut butter eggs

Cream butter and sugars, add eggs & mix well; add baking soda & powder, salt & vanilla. Mix in flour and oats. Mix until well combined. Stir in candy pieces carefully by hand.

Drop by tablespoons onto an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake at 350 for 8 minutes until edges just turn brown. Cool completely.

#3 Peanut Butter with Candy Coated Chocolates

1/2 c. butter, softened

1/2 c. peanut butter

1/2 c. sugar

1/4 c. honey

1/2 tsp. baking soda

1/2 tsp. baking powder

1 egg

1 tsp. vanilla

1 1/4 c. flour

1 cup candy coated chocolate candies

Cream together butter, peanut butter, sugar & honey. Add baking soda & powder, egg and vanilla; combine well. Mix in flour & candies.

Drop by tablespoons onto ungreased cookie sheet. Bake at 350 for 8 minutes until lightly golden brown...if you like them crispy you can go for another minute or so. Allow to cool on the baking sheet for a few minutes, then transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely.


Cookie dough can be kept in the freezer for up to 4-6 weeks.

For ready to bake portions, scoop cookies onto a cookie sheet, place in freezer to harden for a few hours--then transfer to a freezer bag to store & return to the freezer. When you feel like cookies, just pull out how many you need :)