Crumby Banana Muffins

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banana muffins

I’m trying to start the morning out right. I’ve done my Bible study, savoring the last week of A Woman’s Heart during this Holy Week. I’ve thrown a load of laundry in the washer, started the coffee, and shoved in my contacts, thrown on yoga pants. (It’s an at-home day. I’ll change later … this afternoon.)

I know the first words out of their mouths every morning – “Mommy, I’m hungry! Can I have somefing to eat?” If I’m lucky, I’ll have ‘somefing’ ready before Libbie starts looting in the pantry and decides she will eat pretzels for breakfast.

Before they even woke this morning (albeit wiped out from travel, they slept a little late … and by that I mean until 7:20), I started muffins. Trying to beat them at their own game. Trying to be Mother.

I’ve had a kind of abysmal parenting day so far. But at least I gave them muffins. And they were good.

Crumby Banana Muffins

Yield: 12 muffins

Crumby Banana Muffins

Ingredients

  • 1/3 c. milk
  • 1/4 c. butter, melted
  • 1 egg
  • 1 ripe banana
  • 2 c. flour
  • 1/2 c. brown sugar
  • 2 tsp. baking power
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • Crumb Topping
  • 1/4 c. flour
  • 1/4 c. brown sugar, packed
  • 1/4 tsp. cinnamon
  • 2 T cold butter

Instructions

Pre-heat oven to 400F. Spray muffin tin with cooking spray.

Make streusel topping in a bowl. With a fork mix together 1/4 c. flour, 1/4 c. brown sugar, and cinnamon until well-combined. Cut in butter with a pastry cutter until it is coarse crumbs. Set aside.

In a mixing bowl, whisk egg, milk, and butter together; add banana and mash together.

In a small bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt. Add to wet ingredients and stir until just combined.

Divide among 12 muffin cups. Sprinkle each muffin with about 1 T of streusel.

Bake about 20-22 minutes, until a tester comes out clean.

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S’mores Cookie Cups {Secret Recipe Club}

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S'Mores Cookie Cups

Welcome to this month’s installment of the Secret Recipe Club. Did you know I’ve been making recipes with the SRC since June 2011, almost three years ago? I’ve only missed one month in all that time, too! You can see all my Secret Recipe Club reveals here. (I just browsed back through my last few and oh man … I totally want Oxtail Stew again.)

My assigned blog for this month was Things I Make (for Dinner). This is only Sarah’s second month in the SRC. Welcome to the party, Sarah! Hope you’re enjoying it!

Sarah is a married woman, enjoying life with her husband in Ontario, Canada. She loves to cook in what little time she has and shared recipes from many different sources – but especially loves Everyday Food, from what I could tell on her site!

smores cups

 

I needed a dessert recipe for an Easter celebration at church, so I made these S’Mores Cookies, but with my own little twist on them. I was having a harder time getting my dough to stick together, so I shoved it into mini-muffin cups and stuck the chocolate inside. I didn’t use enough chocolate, though – so use bigger chocolate chips or a more generous portion than shown here. I’ll admit I had a late start this month so I didn’t get a chance to re-make the recipe like I would have liked to.

Mr. V tested these warm from the oven, though, and really liked them. With the addition of a little more chocolate (my fault totally, not Sarah’s!) they will be perfect party bites! Or go ahead and make the cookies as Sarah shows on her site.

S’Mores Cookie Cups

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 35 minutes

Yield: about 36 mini-muffin cups

S’Mores Cookie Cups

Ingredients

  • 1/2 c. old-fashioned oats
  • 1 c. all-purpose flour
  • 1 c. whole-wheat flour
  • 3/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 c. butter, softened
  • 3/4 c. brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • about 1/2 c. chocolate chips or chunks
  • 12 large marshmallows, cut into thirds with kitchen shears

Instructions

Preheat oven to 350F.

Pulse oats in a food processor until they are fine. Add flours, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt; pulse to mix.

With a mixer, cream butter and brown sugar until yellow and fluffy. Add egg and beat, scraping sides. Add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture and mix on low speed, until combined. You may need to mix by hand for a few minutes to get the batter to come together. It will be very thick.

Spray a mini-muffin tin with cooking spray. (I love my silicone muffin pan!) Drop about 1 Tablespoon of dough into each muffin cup. Press it down into the cup; then make a deep indention with your finger. Sprinkle chocolate chips or chunks into the indention.

Bake at 350 for about 14 minutes, until tops begin to brown.

Turn oven to broil.

Top each muffin cup with one-third of a marshmallow. Broil until lightly brown - watching constantly. This only took about 45 seconds for me.

Let cool in pan at least 5 minutes, then remove to a rack. Best eaten warm!

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THE Cheesy Meatloaf Recipe

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World's Best Cheesy Meatloaf

There are very few recipes from his mom that my husband insists I make and make it THAT WAY. Number One: Pumpkin cookies. Number two: Summer Bow-ties. Number three: Meatloaf. For Mr. V (yes you all know our last name now but I still don’t want his student to be able to Google him), thou shalt not make the meatloaf without cheese. It shall not have ketchup, nor shall you insert an herb of any kind. ONLY THIS WILL DO.

I won’t tell anyone if you adjust this to your tastes. I’ve actually made a non-cheesy version into Meatloaf Muffins when I was eating dairy-free because of nurslings, and then I used Dijon mustard and thyme. But really, if you use a nice, very sharp cheddar, the meatloaf has plenty of flavor.

My husband gets so excited when I make meatloaf it’s ridiculous. I make it pretty much every time we’re on break and the dining hall is closed. And thankfully, since it’s covered with cheese, the kids will eat it, too! They don’t know they are supposed to hate meatloaf.

THE Cheesy Meatloaf

THE Cheesy Meatloaf Recipe

Yield: 6 servings

THE Cheesy Meatloaf Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 egg
  • 2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 8 oz. tomato sauce, divided
  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 1 to 1 1/4 c. old-fashioned oats
  • 1 1/2 c. shredded sharp cheddar cheese, divided

Instructions

Preheat oven to 350F.

Whisk together egg, Worcestershire sauce, salt, and 1/2 cup tomato sauce. Mix in ground beef, then oats. Press into a large rectangle on a piece of aluminum foil. Sprinkle with 1 cup cheese.

Use the aluminum foil to roll the meat into a pinwheel. Push in the ends to seal somewhat, then turn over the loaf into a greased loaf pan.

Bake 50 minutes at 350F. Remove from oven, pour over remaining tomato sauce. Bake another 15 minutes. Remove from oven, sprinkle with remaining cheese. Cover loosely with foil tent and let rest 10 minutes before slicing.

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Gluten Free Recipe Roundup via Musings of a Housewife

Do you like meatloaf? What’s your favorite recipe for it? I love this, and I also love the grilled meatloaf at Logan’s. Yummmm.

Vanilla Baked Donuts (Secret Recipe Club)

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Vanilla Baked Donuts for Spring

 

Don’t you LOVE all the Springtime colors there? We’ve been having some beautiful Spring weather lately. It makes me feel kind of bad when I know there are others still covered in snow. But they’ll have their day when we are roasting in the 105 degree weather this summer, right?

For this month’s Secret Recipe Club, I was assigned The Weekend Gourmet. Wendy is a Texan with a passion for sharing about good food, wine, restaurants, and brands she loves. I was tempted by several of her recipes, including Apple Dutch Babies with Currants and Almonds and Margarita Chicken Tacos. But in the end I decided these donuts would make a fun Saturday morning breakfast.

I’ve made baked donuts from time to time since Alli-N-Son introduced them to me and I bought the Wilton donut pan.

Sidenote #1: They have a heart donut pan now! It’s soooo cute! And $5!

Sidenote #2: Allison posted about those donuts on March 10. Amazon tells me I bought my pan on March 20. I am easily influenced. Behold the power of bloggers.

Baked Donuts

So although I’ve made baked donuts a lot, I’ve never posted about them here, and I thought it was about time I did! Wendy provided this tasty recipe that made wonderful, cinnamony donuts of perfect consistency. Baked donuts aren’t as dense as the ones you get at Dunkin, but they are still delicious and a great treat – especially with icing and sprinkles. My kids thought they had gone to Breakfast Heaven.

Iced Vanilla Baked Donuts

Yield: 12 donuts

Iced Vanilla Baked Donuts

Recipe sourced from The Weekend Gourmet. Wendy's original recipe made six donuts but a ton of icing, so I've doubled the donut recipe for you here. You're going to want to make at least twelve, anyway.

Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 c. cake flour (I used this tutorial from Joy the Baker to make mine from regular AP flour)
  • 1 c. sugar
  • 2 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 3 T butter
  • 1 c. milk
  • 1 tsp. lemon juice
  • 2 T vanilla
  • 2 eggs
  • Icing
  • 1/4 c. milk
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 3 c. powdered sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • Sprinkles, sugars, or other decorations

Instructions

Preheat oven to 425F.

In a mixing bowl, whisk together cake flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon.

Melt butter in a large measuring cup. Add milk and lemon juice to butter and stir. (You can use buttermilk instead of milk & lemon juice if you have it.)

Add milk mixture, vanilla, and eggs to dry ingredients and stir until just combined.

Spoon donut batter into a greased donut pan, filling each cavity 2/3 full.

Bake in preheated oven about 6 minutes, until donuts spring back when you touch them. Let cool 3 minutes or so.

While donuts cool, mix 1/4 cup milk and 1 teaspoon vanilla together in a bowl. Whisk in powdered sugar until the mixture is thick but still pourable (about 3 cups). Whisk in 1/4 teaspoon salt so it won't be so sweet your teeth hurt.

Dip the tops of the donuts into the icing, then place on parchment paper. Sprinkle with desired decorations (sprinkles, sugars, chopped-up jellybeans, whatever!).

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Indian Cheeseball Recipe

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indiancheeseball

Here’s a fun story about blogging that ends with a great recipe.

Recently I helped throw a bridal shower for our children’s minister at church. I was in charge of food and told we were having a winter theme. How fun! The decorations were gorgeous. I ordered cupcakes from a friend who is skilled at making them. But I wasn’t sure where to go with winter-themed foods.

And then I remembered that once upon a time, Amanda had a snowflake party. I totally remembered reading her post about it. So I went and dug it up and realized that she had posted it in 2008!!! Seriously people, that’s a long time ago. In January 2008, I wasn’t even pregnant with my first child. We lived in Nashville. It seems like eighty thousand years ago. I can’t find one of Libbie’s tennis shoes or remember where I put my keys, but I CAN remember that Amanda had a snowflake party in 2008.

We can also add as a side that hers was basically the only blog I read in 2008. And I still have no idea how I found it.

I stole Amanda’s idea to have a hot chocolate bar, and then I made “fairy wands” – pretzels rods dipped in white chocolate and rolled in blue and pink sugars. I cut up winter fruit – grapefruit, oranges, and grapes – and then I decided to go to town and make Amanda’s Cheeseball from Heaven. It sounded like the weirdest thing in the world, but I trust her. And we share the same passionate love for the Magically Delicious Mexican Corn Dip, so I know she has good taste in appetizers.

And you know what? It is the cheeseball from heaven. It’s nothing like any cheeseball I’ve ever had. A little spicy, a little crunchy, a little sweet from coconut and mango chutney … everyone at the party adored it and asked me about it!

Thanks, Amanda, for the great recipe for my arsenal! It’s the perfect winter-themed food. A big, fluffy snowball … with chutney on it.

Indian Cheeseball

Ingredients

  • 8 oz. cream cheese, softened
  • 8 oz. sour cream
  • 1/2 c. currants
  • 1/2 c. chopped dry-roasted peanuts
  • 3 green onions, finely sliced, white and light green part only
  • 1 tsp. curry powder
  • 3 Tablespoons mango chutney
  • about 1 c. shredded coconut

Instructions

With a stand or hand mixer, beat cream cheese and sour cream together until smooth. Add curry powder and mix until incorporated. Stir in currants, peanuts, and green onions.

Spoon the mixture onto plastic wrap. Use the wrap to form it into a ball and tie at the top. Place in a round, small bowl and let sit in the refrigerator a few hours or overnight.

Remove cheeseball from wrap 15-30 minutes before time to serve. Roll in coconut, pressing it into the cheeseball to stick well. Spoon mango chutney over the top of the cheeseball. Serve with crackers.

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Chocolate Chip Banana Snack Cake {Secret Recipe Club}

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Chocolate Chip Banana Snack Cake

Say what? Didn’t I just do a Secret Recipe Club post last week? Well yes. Yes I did. But there was an “orphan” in my group, so I am making one of her recipes too.

I actually just had Sara at Cupcake Muffin as my assigned blogger in November, when I made Lemon and White Chocolate Chip Mini-Muffins. She is a grad student at UC Berkeley and has a gigantic recipe index, which is very fun! I clicked through a bunch of recipes – and had to laugh when out of all of them I clicked on Cranberry Lemon Quick Bread with Pecans. Doesn’t that sounds good? Well it was her recipe modification when she had my blog for SRC! Ha.

Although many of the entrees look enticing, I really didn’t need to make a dinner (the whole dining hall thing), so I let the ripe bananas on my counter decide for me. Sara’s Chocolate Chip Banana Bars sounded tasty, so that’s what I made.

Now Sara said hers turned out more of the texture of a cookie or cookie bar. Mine were definitely cakey – Mr. V said it was basically banana bread cut into squares. I disagreed; it wasn’t super moist as banana bread usually is, to the point of falling apart. The only changes I made to the recipe were cutting back on the sugar and amount of chocolate chips and using brown sugar instead of white. So not sure what happened, but we enjoyed this as a “snack cake,” a cake without icing, if you will.

Mr. V took all but one piece (that we sampled) down the dorm boys and he said they inhaled it in about five minutes. So I will say it was a success! Thanks, Sara, for the great new recipe for my arsenal.

Chocolate Chip Banana Snack Cake

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 45 minutes

Total Time: 55 minutes

Yield: 20 small squares

Chocolate Chip Banana Snack Cake

Ingredients

  • 1 c. butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 c. brown sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 4 c. all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 2 ripe bananas, mashed
  • 1 c. mini or regular chocolate chips

Instructions

Preheat oven for 350.

With a stand mixer, beat together butter and brown sugar. Add eggs one at a time with mixer on medium speed. Add vanilla.

In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

Mix half the flour mixture into the butter mixture. Add bananas and mix, then mix in rest of the flour. By hand, stir in chocolate chips.

Spread in a greased 9x13 pan with a rubber spatula, trying to smooth evenly.

Bake for 45-50 minutes, until a tester comes out clean. Let cool before cutting into squares.

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