Tag Archives: Breakfast

Super moist bananabread with pecans!

16 Mar

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First things first: Is it banana bread? Or is it banana cake? To me, it´s cake. I mean, when I can choose between cake and bread – well, the answer it pretty much given… And another thing, why would one call it bread, by any means? It contains lots of sugar, butter, fruits and no yeast – unlike any bread. But you do, usually, bake it in a bread-like-pan…. So I guess that´s why it´s got it´s bread-name. Anyway, who cares, as long as it tastes like cake! And when you can present it as bread, though in reality it is a cake, everyone´s concience is clean: The baker´s and the eater´s. (Or mine, as it would be called in my case…)

I had some very overripe bananas lying around – and so starts every story of a banana bread. (cake)
Actually, I had kind of let them overripe on purpose, so I could have an excuse to bake with them! But only partly…My mother bought all kinds of food, and pretty much filled my fridge and freezer before she left, so it was inevitable that something would – not go to waste – but, end up in baked goods. Maybe that was her plan all along. Ahh, she knows me too well!

So, Sunday came, the bananas were brown as ever, and I had cake-cravings! Off to the bookshelf to find a nice recipe. I do have a couple of winner banana-bread recipes, that are just amazingly good, but I´m kind of in this getting-to-use-my-cookbooks-flow for the moment, so I grabbed three candidates and started the search. I almost turned to Dorie, again, but then it would be a bundt, and not a loaf. I wanted a loaf. And I feel with her, I shouldn´t change the recipe too much, I have a feeling it´s best to leave it to her. And I wanted to use some yoghurt and nuts, cause that´s good stuff in a banana bread. So, finally, I picked the banana pecan bread, from Leila Lindholm´s Piece of Cake. The picture of that bread was one of the first things that got stuck on my mind from that book, along came many other things… And one of the reasons I got the book! Besides, it´s so pretty! But, I haven´t really baked anything from it yet besides a bread, so it was about time I started the serious business – on to the cakes!

I adapted the recipe slightly, substituting some of the butter with yoghurt, powdered sugar with sugar, and some of the flour with whole wheat, but the original recipe goes like this. And I only had 3 bananas… But I don´t have the measurements I used, so I present to you the original recipe!

Pecan-banana bread

150 g butter
1 dl sugar
2 dl powdered sugar
4 ripe bananas
2 eggs
3 dl flour
1 ts baking powder
pinch of salt
75 g pecan nuts

Stir the sugars and butter light and creamy.
Mash the bananas (keeping a few chunks if you like – I know I do!) and stir them into the batter. Add the eggs. Mix the dry ingredients and pecans, and gently fold them into the batter. Pour into a buttered loaf-pan, and bake the cake for about 30 minutes in the center of the oven. (Mine needed longer) A toothpick inserted in the center of the cake should come out clean. Allow to slightly cool, and dig in!

This cake can be served pretty much any way you like: Warm or cold, with our without butter, nutella, ice cream….you get the picture. I thought it was really good straight from the oven, warm and nice, so that the butter I added just melted into the cake. But on the other hand, it´s also really good the second, or third day, when it has had time to set – then you really get the moistness of this cake… Yummy either way!

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Whole grain scones with raisins & walnuts

4 Dec

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Scones! Gotta love´em! I know I do. I´ve said it before, and I´ll say it again: I love scones! I´m not afraid to admit it. It´s a fact, it´s a thing I can´t deny, like the fact that I will love them till I die… Ok – you get the picture.

Why this love of scones you say?
Well first of all – they taste amazing, but secondly, and maybe most importantly, you can start baking and get to the eating-part within 30 minutes! Unlike their yeasty relatives… And may I add that there´s absolutely no kneading involved! Only slight stirring, and even barely so. Which means you don´t have to wait for the dough to rise or to evolve to another stage, which again means there´s no disappointments when your dough doesn´t behave like it´t supposed to. No, no. None of that. Scones are grateful little creatures. At least compared to their yeasty cousins, which seem to live a life of their own. And that can be interesting at times, but other times, you want to be in charge, you want to be the master in your own kitchen. And then, my friend – scones are your friends.

And, like many other things I guess, you can play around with them, mixing them up with different kinds of flour or addings to suit your liking that day. You can go all in with full cream, butter and sugar and chocolate, or you can add berries or fruits for freshness, or you can substitute some of the ingredients to make a sweet, yet slightly healtiher scone. That´s what I intended to today. Sweet – yes. Always sweet to suit my sweet tooth, but also trying to make them a little less fatty and sugary, so that I can gobble on more of them, and eat them like a sweet substitute for bread.

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Like I may have mentioned before, I´m on an everlasting search for a scone recipe that will resemble, or ideally copy – (but I don´t aim that high any longer) – the scones from my time working at the Lie Nielsen bakery. And judging by the photos, and list of ingredients, these seemed to be fitting.´ve actually made these once before, but that was a long time ago. I couldn´t really remember how they turned out last time – so it was time to make them again! It was my turn to bring baked goods to my sweet-loving health-concernded classmates this week, and what opportunity could be more appropriate? The recipe is from a book from the Norwegian bakeri Åpent Bakeri. I don´t really know the bakery, since it´s based in Oslo, but from what I´ve heard, it´s one of the best. And their scones are no exeption… And neither are mine – if I dare say so!

Scones (adapted from Åpent Bakeri)
– yield 8 decent sized scones

115 g sugar
100 g butter
1 dl buttermilk or greek yoghurt
2,5 dl milk
375 g flour (I used about 200 g wheat, and 175 whole grain – a mix of spelt/rye flour)
25 g baking powder
50 g walnuts
75 g raisins

The day before baking, soak the raisins.
(Or at least for a couple of hours – if your scones-cravings are urgent!)
Drain the raisins, then set them aside on a paper towel to soak up any external moisture.

In a large mixing bowl, beat together butter, yoghurt and sugar. Add the (sifted) flour and baking powder mix in stages, then knead lightly till it is smooth and elastic in texture. Slowly add the milk while beating, and stir the mixture till it is smooth and lump-free (don’t worry if it appears curdled, mine did and my scones still turned out beautifully!) Carefully stir in the soaked raisins and walnuts, then shape the dough into a ball. (Be careful not to over-stir! The less you do the better – You just want the dough to hold together and be somewhat lumpfree) If the dough turns very wet, add a little more flour.

Place on a lightly floured surface and pat into a 7- to 8-inch circle about 3/4-inch thick. Sprinkle withe chopped almonds. Use a sharp knife to cut into 8 triangles. I like to pull them apart too, just to make sure they bake more evenly. Place on a cookie sheet (preferably lined with parchment paper), about 1 inch apart. Bake until golden, about 15 to 17 minutes. Cool for 5 minutes and serve warm or at room temperature with butter. Simple as that! And that´s why I love scones!

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Cottage cheese-apple-pancakes

23 Nov

Pancakes are back! Well, where they ever really out? Nahhh, not really. Just took a break after a pancake overdose some time ago. And ironically enough, a holiday in the US, consuming a lot of breakfast-pancakes, was what made me want more! I had a lot of pancakes over there… When I´m in the states (sounds as if I go there regularly – but frankly, this is just my second visit! But I´ll be back, for sure! Love it!) I try to eat as american as possible, and by american I mean all the classic american stuff. And of course local specialites. Well, I try to do this whereever I go. When in Rome, right? (And when I actually was in Rome this summer, I indulged in risotto, pizzas, gelato….need I say more? But that´s another story!) So – I was in the states, and breakfast was not included in our hotel, so we went out for breakfast each day. And pancakes were always appealing to me – speaking to me – choose me, choose me! So I did. Over and over again. By the end of our holiday, I´ve had my decent pancake-share- Some really great, some mediocre pancakes, but most importantly, I remembered how tasty a pancake-breakfast can be. So, one week later, my jetlag was more or less gone, it was weekend, and my pancake cravings began. I gave in. Though, not the typical american classic kind. I tried to make them a little healthier, non-US-style! (But then again, I´m no longer in America, but in healthy whole-grain scandinavia, surrounded by health-freaks from my study. So I adapt, once again!) I bought some cottage cheese for some reason (I never eat it) and decided to use some of it for pancakes. Since I didn´t have blueberries or bananas and was to lazy to get out, and I was beginning to get a cold as a result from 10 days in Miami, and then back to cold Denmark, I had to make them without fruit or use what I had. I had half an apple, and decided to use that. Grated it into the batter. And then I was ready to make some pancakes! They turned out really moist because of the apple and cottage cheese, though the texture was a little different then the usual pancake. I also made them whole grain to make them a little healthier. And then I drenched them in butter and syrup….. Next time, I think I´ll go for the real thing though! But as a less-guilt-free pancake this is really good! And moist!
After a little research online, I had a certain idea of a recipe, and mine went something like this:

Cottage cheese-apple pancakes (about 10)

1/2 cup cottage cheese
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tbsp syrup (I used agave, but maple or honey will do!)
½ cup all purpose flour
¼ cup whole wheat flour
1 tsp baking powder
Butter/oil for frying.

Puree the cottage cheese and eggs in a food processor for about 30 seconds. Add in the dry ingredients, then and pulse just until combined, and stir in the grated apple.

Preheat a griddle, skillet, or any flat bottomed pan on medium/low heat.

*The pancakes need to be cooked on a lower heat for a little longer than normal pancakes.

Add some butter to the pan if you’re pan isn’t non stick. If it is, you probably won’t need any addition butter to prevent sticking. Scoop the pancakes onto the preheated griddle and use the back of the scoop to spread the pancakes a bit. Cook for about 4 minutes per side.

*The outside of the pancakes will be a deep golden brown when they’re done, not a light golden brown. Serve with syrup and butter, bananas, berries or whatever you fancy!

Great Grains Muffins – and a much anticipated cookbook…

23 Nov


Hello! I decided to do a little makeover here – you like?
I wasn´t sure what style or coulour to pick, but when in doubt, go with pink! As the old saying goes… Pink is girlie, sweet, and one of my favourite colours, and goes well with the name of this blog, though it´s not all cake and frosting in here. But maybe that will change. Maybe there´ll be more of that to come from now on. Because. You see. I got a birthday present from my sister. A book. A cookbook, or to be more precise, a baking book. The book we´re talking about is Baking, from my home to yours by Dorie Greenspan. And that probably doesn´t sound like a big deal, but it was. First of all the book was huge, thick and heavy – more than 300 recipes! I didn´t expect that. (My sweet sister had to drag that thing around during her vacation) But I´ve become somewhat obsessed with getting this book, as it turned out that wasn´t so easy for me living in Norway or now Denmark. I tried ebay, but noone would ship to Scandinavia. I tried amazon. They wouldn´t ship to Norway. So I had to move to Denmark. (Not exactly, I´m not that obsessed..) But I did move to Denmark, and decided to try from here. And hooray, Amazon would ship the book here! So I got an account and made an order. I thought. But no, I made three orders! But by the time I noticed, the books were already on their way somewhere over the Atlantic. Ok. I wanted this book, but three? Not really necessary. I could try to sell them, but I guess people aren´t that into cookbooks in English with US measurements here. That´s just me! And either way, it would turn out quite expensive as I had to pay the duty on those massive books. The books made it all the way to my post office, I was informed that they had arrived, and it was sad deciding on not picking them up and let them return to sender. So close! And than it took some time for me to respond to Amazon, and eventually getting my money back, and then decided that if I ever were to get my hands on that book, I had to order a ticket to the US, enter a bookstore physically and purchase it. It was too complicated otherwise. By this time, it was getting into an obsession as you may notice. I stopped thinking about it, as much as I could. But it never completely left my mind. So when my sister was going to California for a wedding this summer, I made a little request Conveniently my birthday was coming up…I was excused! I made sure to write down the name and the author for her. I wasn´t going to let bad memory stop me!

And then. She came back. With a present. She handed it over to me, and I was so glad to see it was a book! Because a book, meant the book. But man, was I surprised by the size!

The reason I had to get this book (I guess the main reason is that it was so hard to achieve) is that I´ve made several of the recipes from this book, only that I found them online. But each and every one of them turned out great! Some of them instantly turned into favourites, like , and not to mention this baby . So now there´s no excuse not to bake – not that there ever is to this girl! My motto is: There´s always an excuse to bake, to celebrate and to have cake! So with finally getting my hands on this baking-bible, I realize I have to get started to work my way through the 300+ recipes! And here it goes, my very first recipe: I started with muffins. Not the overly sweet cake-like kind, but a more filling muffin, that you can easily have for breakfast. It´s still sweet, but not in a sugar-overload kind of way, just perfect for breakfast or as a little accompaniement to a cop of coffee, whatever time of the day. This recipe had a picture of the muffins, and both the picture along with the title of the muffins, was what made me decide on baking these as the very first thing. And a quick look at the recipe showed that they were made partly with oatmeal and wholemeal, and healthier is always a plus when you bake a lot, and live alone… The muffins are called Great grains muffins, and the picture showed a perfect muffin (of course), bursting with prunes, and served with cheddar and a cop of coffee with milk. Yum, yum, yum – I wanted that scenario in my kitchen too! So, on with the apron and get baking!
I didn´t have prunes, so I substituted that with raisins. I didn´t have buttermilk either, but I had some crème fraiche I used instead. I also think I increased the amount of wholemeal. And I didn´t have cheddar either, but as Dorie says, the muffins are great with butter, or even plain. And butter, in my world, is never, ever wrong. Not this time either!

Great Grains Muffins (Dorie Greenspan, Baking from my home to yours)

1 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup whole wheat flour
1/3 cup yellow cornmeal
1/3 cup old-fashioned oats
1/4 cup sugar
2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup buttermilk
1/3 cup pure maple syrup
2 large eggs
1 stick (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
3/4 cup quartered moist, plump prunes or other dried fruits ( cut up as necessary) and/or chopped nuts (optional)

What to do with blueberries take 1: Blueberry scones

19 Aug

Blueberry season is upon us folks! And that can only mean one thing. I have berry issues! It’s the same problem every year. And what a problem it is. Ohh, man…. where do I begin! Well, here! You see, here’s the deal.

I love berries. I love to pick berries. And once I start, I can’t finish until, well I’ve finished. Not a single berry will be left behind this maniac! If so, it’s because I’m planning to get back to it the next day. Or else, I’ll have trouble sleeping. I know, I’m weird.

I also love to buy berries when they look totally irresistable and are sold for next to nothing at the supermarket, cause they’re in season. So every year, history repeats itself. Suddenly my fridge is filled with all kinds of berries, and I have to find a clever way to either use/freeze/eat them. And of course I haven’t learned anything from the previous years and got myself a bigger freezer, so now I’m having berries with every meal. No, that’s not true. But every day, yes! And sometimes several times a day! It’s a luxury…that is good for me too! But enough of that already. I wanted to incorporate some of this deliciousness into baked goods. All I made so far was jam. Strawberry and something I call queen-jam. That’s a mix of raspberries and blueberries. It’s jam good! But berries and baking? Together? In perfect harmony? Well, there I said it. Perfect harmony.

Let me introduce you berries to sugar. And fat. Aka carbs and calories. You’re gonna get along and make a great team, for sure. I’ve seen it happen before! And I’m not to change a winning team. Now I just had to decide what to bake first. I have my eyes on a blueberry pie, but that I’m planning to make for the weekend when we’re having my family for dinner. Now I wanted something quick and easy, and I had narrowed it down to scones or muffins. And it suddenly became very easy. I’m not that much of a muffin-enthusiast, probably because I haven’t found a proper recipe. Scones however… It’s a love story.

I found a recipe from Cook’s Illustrated, claiming to be the world’s best scones. I’m very easily lead on by those titles, I fell for it, and made them. Were they the world’s best scones? I don’t know. I haven’t really been that much around the scones block. I mainly eat the ones I get from my job. (That I’ve quit, so I better find a substitute recipe asap! I cannot function without scones) Were they good? Hell, yeah. But the thing is, I made them a little too thin. I managed to make 16, and the recipe yielded 8. So I guess mine came out a little crunchier and crispier than they should be. I’d like them to be a little more chewy, a little more dense. Just a little more. So, don’t do that mistake! Make the exact number according to the recipe, and let me know how it turns out!

I was planning on whipping up some cream to go with them, but I was lazy. But I discovered crème fraiche did the trick. And some day, I’ll do that clotted cream thing, just like the Brits. I’m daydreaming about having a tea-party complete with scones, clotted cream, lemon curd and all that goes along. But for now, serve them with a generous dollop of crème fraiche and some homemade jam on top.

Blueberry Baked Oatmeal

3 Aug

My first day of my vacation! Ah, sweet sweet freedom. And I got a letter yesterday, telling me I’m starting my studies of nutrition in Copenhagen in a month! Yaay! Now, if this doesn’t call for a celebration, I don’t know what does. And I knew exactly how to mark this very special day. And no, not with a cake, for once. Today I wanted something else, something that says summer holiday: An extravaganza breakfast. I haven’t made a decent breakfast the last couple of weeks since I’ve been working. And when you work at a bakery, well…you don’t take time eating breakfast or bringing any sort of lunch. I eat there. And as much as I love a good breakfast, sitting down enjoying my meal, reading the paper or just looking out the window contemplating about the day to come, I haven’t done that in a while. I’ve been waking up early, and eating a quick slice of bread once at work. But that routine, my friends, ended today.

Today I took my time, making a breakfast that took 40-50 minutes, and it was so worth it. I thought I had nothing better to do on my first day off, and I had been wanting to make this since I first spotted the recipe, but I never got around to it. I found it at beckybakes.net. One look, and I fell in love.
Besides, 1-hour-breakfasts are for special occasions. I like a nice breakfast, but I also like to sleep, so I wouldn’t get up an hour earlier just to make this. But today, I had nothing on my agenda, so I got up 8.30 to make this, and an hour later me and the boyfriend could enjoy a serious breakfast. Coffee and everything! Lovely!

It was sweeter and heavier than I imagined, quite cake-like. Or crumble-like. Well, quite frankly, and between us, it was a crumble. But that means it was good! Just a little over the top for breakfast, but this is such a day, so it was ok. This was my first encounter with baked oatmeal. It was really good and I loved the crunchy buttery crust. And the addition of blueberries were divine. Perfect combo. I guess there are healthier versions, but hey, that wasn’t really on my mind this morning. Not exactly. I paired it with a good dollop of sour cream, and that was perfect. Since it was quite heavy, I even have some leftovers that will make a nice treat to Grey’s Anatomy tonight!

Blueberry Baked Oatmeal

1 1/4 cups blueberries
3/4 cup milk
1/2 cup honey
2 large eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
¾ cups butter, divided
2 cups rolled oats
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
¼ teaspoons baking soda
½ teaspoons salt
4 tbsp. brown sugar

Preheat oven to 200C/350° F.
Melt butter. Pour 1/4 cup into the bottom of a 9-inch square baking dish.
Sprinkle blueberries and 2 tbsp of brown sugar on top of the butter. Set aside.
In a medium bowl, mix together the soy milk, honey, eggs, remaining butter and vanilla.
In a large bowl, whisk together oats, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Stir the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix well.
Pour over the fruit and smooth the top. Sprinkle with remaining 2 tbsp. of brown sugar.
Bake at 350°F for 40 to 50 minutes, or until browned on top and fruit is bubbly. Allow to cool slightly. Serve with milk or cream. Or like I did, sour cream. Delicious!

Crispy crisp bread

3 Jun

It’s funny. Food is a matter of fashion, and very influenced by trends it seems. Somehow certain recipes find their way through the internet, among people, and become a hit. Or maybe some recipes are just that good, that they would have been spread troughout the world either way. With or without the internet. That just speeds it up. From a mother to a daughter, from a friend to another, to a colleague…
I have a feeling this is one of those recipes.

It’s happened a number of times, when I have what I think is a new recipe, to try out, I spot several similar recipes on tastespotting or other blogs. Great minds think alike, I guess. Well, it happened again. I’ve never thought of making my own crisp bread. Ever. But a few months ago I visited my mother in law, and she had made a box full of crisp bread stuffed with seeds and grains, as a part of dieting her husband. I didn’t get to taste them, but I was very intrigued by the look of them, and instantly thought of making crisp bread myself. A couple of days later I met a girl from my class to study. And as always, we started to talk about food instead of chemistry, and she told me about a colleague of her who had brought some very delicious homemade crispbread to work. Now she had been given the recipe and was making them herself. And then, after some time I visited my parents. And what did I see? My mother had joined the ride and made them too! A box full of crisp bread, looking exactly like the one my mother in law made. Well, that was it. I had no other choice than getting down to buisness. I had been thinking about it for ages, but all kitchen-activity has been put off until my exams were over. They are now, so I’ll start my to-bake list with these. I figured I could check the internet for a recipe, but didn’t really think I would find any. I mean, who makes crisp bread? Well, everyone apparently. I didn’t even get to log in to bloglovin, before a crisp bread recipe practically was threwn at me. So I found something that looked like what I had in mind. With lots and lots of stuff in it. And it’s a low carb recipe, if you’re into that.

Crisp bread
(makes about 30)

3,5 dl sunflower seeds
1 dl chia seeds
1 dl sesame seeds
2,25 dl bran
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon honey
5 dl water

Directions
Mix everything together. Leave the batter to soak for 20 minutes. Divide the batter onto two sheets lined with parchment paper. Even it out with a spatula, making it as even and thin as possible. Cut into squares with a knife or a pizza cutter. Bake on 170 C for about an hour, or until golden and crisp. Turn the sheets once or twice to make sure they’re evenly baked. When they’re done, immediately remove from the parchement paper. Allow to cool on a rack, and store in an airtight container. They can be stored for several weeks, but don’t expect them to last that long.

Mine came out very delicate and crisp. Maybe a little to crisp, because I rolled out the batter very thinly. And I forgot to cut them before I put them in the oven. I remembered after half an hour, but the damage was already done, and they very hard to cut in even squares. But don’t be like me. Cut them before you bake them, and it shouldn’t be a problem. Make them as thin as you want. But these are delicate babies, I tell you, so you’ll have to be very gentle. But for a clumsy girl like me, that’s hard. So next time I’ll probably make them a little thicker, and bake them a little longer. The taste is amazing either way. Crispy and crunchy and filled with so many good things, you can’t help feeling good eating them. You can add some spices to your liking, if you want some extra flavour. I added a little pepper and tzatziki-powder, just to spice it up a notch, and it was perfect. But don’t overdo it, the seeds are great on their own!

Pair with a slice of cheese and a cup of tea or whatever tickles your fancy. Feels good. Tastes good. And it does you good. No goofy add-ins here, it’s all natural. You’ll never return to store bought crisp bread again.

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