Monday, March 2, 2009

I stole it and made it my own!

I love to cook! (If you know me and have seen my rather large backside, you know the reality is I LOVE to EAT!!!).

I love to have people over and cook a large elaborate dinner and match wine to the food and then spend the rest of the night at the dinner table eating and drinking. I think (and my husband agrees) I am actually pretty good at it! I can substitute ingredients, change up the spices etc. and it will turn out fabulous. But, my baking skills aren't necessarily all that. I usually stick like glue to the recipes, for fear they will turn out icky (and half the time, even with my diligence, they still do.) I decided to be bold this week and try something new... I stole a yummy looking recipe from the Noble Pig who stole it from the Hungry Housewife. It called for coconut (which I cannot stand) and I was trying to make it a tad more healthy, so I used carrots and whole wheat flour, also I only had pecans, not walnuts, and I REFUSE to leave the house and go to the store for 1 ingredient!!! Check it out:

You will need: Bananas, buttermilk, granulated sugar, butter, whole wheat flour, carrots, eggs, blueberries, pecans, vanilla extract, baking powder, baking soda and table salt.

At some point you will want to chop up 1 cup of walnuts or pecans. Spread them on a baking sheet (I used parchment paper) then spray generously with cooking spray ( few calories than butter, right!!??) and cook at 350 degrees, for around 10 minutes, tossing occasionally.

Mix together 2 cups all-purpose flour, 2 teaspoons baking powder, 1/2 teaspoon baking soda, and 1 teaspoon table salt.

Cream together 1/2 cup butter (mmmm butter!) and 1 cup sugar.

Add 2 eggs.

Mix in your dry ingredients and 1/3 cup buttermilk alternating wet and dry, starting and finishing with dry.

Now add 4 over-ripe bananas (I don't think mine were nasty enough, I think the browner the better), 1 cup shredded carrot (I only had bagged baby carrots, and may have cut the snot out of my fingers trying to shred them),1 cup blueberries, your toasted nuts, and 1T vanilla.

Mix it all together, put into 2 loaf pans and cook for 45 to 55 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean.

Add a heaping load of butter (remember, we're trying to keep it healthy!), and eat one whole loaf pan and tell your family the recipe only made one loaf! Remember to wash the second loaf pan!

Now you may wonder what all this has to do with our one-year road trip plan. (Yes I actually had a point to this whole thing!!!). We are planning to live in a place that has a kitchen about the size of my current kitchen sink. Do you think I could actually loose that 15 pounds of "baby fat" (yes, I know Spencer is 6 1/2 years old, let me live in my fantasy world!) trying to cook and eat in that kitchen? Let me know what you think!

The Hungry Housewife's Banana Bread Stolen by the Noble Pig, Stolen and Modified by ME
2 cups whole wheat flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon table salt
1/2 cup butter, room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
4 ripe nasty bananas
1/3 cup buttermilk
1 cup pecans, coarsely chopped and toasted
1 cup shredded carrot
1 cup blueberries, fresh or frozen (thawed), plus a handful for sprinkling on top
1 Tablespoon pure vanilla extract

In a medium bowl whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda and table salt. Set aside.

Cream together butter and sugar until white and fluffy; about three minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, until fully incorporated. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the mixture alternating with buttermilk. Start and end with dry ingredients.

Stir in mashed bananas, carrot, vanilla, 1 cup blueberries and pecans. Lightly grease two 8 x 4 loaf pans. Fill both pans with batter and throw a handful of blueberries on top.

Bake in a 350 degree oven for 45 to 55 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes clean.

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