Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Banana Bread

I have wanted to share this recipe with you for a while.  I have been making this for a few years and it is a hit with family and friends.  It is a great recipe to use when you start to notice the bananas turning brown.  It my opinion, the browner the banana the better it is for the recipe!

Chocolate Chip Banana Bread
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup margarine
2 eggs
1 1/4 cup bananas, mashed
1 1/4 cup all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon cinammon
1 cup chocolate chips
1.  Cream sugar and margarine together
2.  Add eggs and bananas, make sure to mix well
3.  Stir in flour, followed by salt and baking soda.  Make sure mixture is well incorporated.
4.  Pour into a greased and floured loaf pan. 
5.  Bake in a 350 degree oven for 50-55 minutes.
6.  Cool bread in loaf pan for about 15 minutes then remove and place on wire rack to finish the cooling process. 
**This recipe can also be used to make muffins.  I have done that in the past.  It makes for a quick breakfast on the go!
Grab a book, cup of tea and enjoy the bread!

Monday, April 8, 2013

Lemon Chiffon Cake

I have been lazy!  I admit it.  So much has been going on that it has been difficult to be able to post anything.  I have a lot of things to add to the blog.  I am going to pretend that I went on a little vacation so I do not feel guilty about my lack of posting...

I have a new recipe that I would love to share with you.  This recipe can be labled as "an oldie, but goodie."  While I was making it I felt like a 1950s housewife, like one of the mothers from the black and white television shows "Ozzie and Harriet" or "Leave It To Beaver."

I was reading through my old copy of the Better Homes and Gardens cookbook, circa 1953.  You might know which one I am talking about, the red plaid one?  I was in the cakes and frosting section and I was struck by the chiffon cakes.  My eyes immediately went to the Lemon Chiffon Cake.  I read the recipe and decided that was the cake I wanted to make.  I had all the ingredients, but decided to change the recipe slightly. 


Here is the recipe with my additions.  My changes/additions are in italics. 
Golden Lemon Chiffon Cake (from Better Homes and Gardens Cookbook)
1 cup plus 2 tablesppons sifted cake flour
3/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup vegetable oil
2 egg yolks
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons cold water
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon grated lemon peel
1 whole lemon, squeezed for juice
1/2 cup (4) egg whites
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1. Preheat oven at 350 degrees. 
2. Sift the dry ingedients into a mixing bowl (I used my KitchenAid standing mixer bowl)
3. Make a well in the dry ingredients and then add the vegetable oil, egg yolks, water, vanilla, grated lemon peel and juice of one whole lemon in the order stated.
4.  Beat until satin smooth (I used the paddle attachment for the KitchenAid standing mixer)
5.  Combine egg whites and cream of tartar in a large mxing bowl.
6.  Beat until they form VERY STIFF PEAKS (stiffer than for meringue of angel food cake). 
7.  Fold egg-yolk batter gradually into egg whites, turning bowl gradually as folding mixture.
8.  Bake in ungreased 8 x 8 x 2 or 9 x 9 x 1 3/4 inch pan for 35 minutes.  (I used my angel food cake pan and baked cake for 32 minutes until golden brown.  When cake was done baking, I turned the pan upside down using a wine bottle instered through the middle.  This technique is how you let angel food cake cool too). 
1 lemon, zested and juiced
1 1/2 cup of powdered sugar
1. Mix together powdered sugar and lemon juice until smooth (I used a small hand whisk).
2.  Pour over slightly warm cake using the drizzle technique (using a spoon, let the glaze drip off spoon as you motion back and forth over cake).
3. Top with lemon zest.

To serve, put on a pretty cake stand.  Use a serrated knife to cut cake, it works best and reduces the amount of crumbs when dishing up this delicious cake.

I was not sure how my family was going to respond to this cake.  I served it to my husband, kids and my parents.  The cake was a huge hit.  My husband loved it.  It was sweet and light, with the perfect amount of tartness from the lemon.  I plan on making this cake A LOT!

Happy spring and happy baking!