Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Banana Bundt Cake for Fantasical Food Fight

It's time for the Fantastical Food Fight hosted by Sarah of Fantastical Sharing. 
This month theme or food I should say is all about Bananas.   The 21st of the month is the International Banana Festival and it's being celebrated in not only Fulton, KY but also in South Fulton, TN.  I wonder how close those places are to each other.  I guess I could google it, but I want to finish off here before I get distracted, again. 
I was inspired by this recipe Banana Bundt Cake with Brown Sugar Glaze from Celebrating Sweets
And then I played.
I think I've been watching too many episodes of the Great British Bake Off Master Class, cause Mary Berry keeps giving me ideas.  In this case I actually beat the egg whites and then folded them in for a lighter touch to the cake. It worked. 
This is also the cake I made for the Legion Cake Raffle a couple weeks ago.  I bake and donate a cake every other week for them to raffle off.  The money raised goes to various needed projects in our community.   The people who win the cake usually share it, but sometimes they take it home and keep it all to themselves.  And that's what the winner did last week.  He took it home. 

I made a killer toffee sauce to pour over it, and in fact, cheated a little and took some of the batter and baked it in a small (4inch) springform pan.  And I'm so glad I did.
Cause that way I got to taste it and I can say without any doubt, I'm making this again.  I poked holes in the cake before pouring the hot toffee sauce over it, thinking it might make the sauce soak in, but instead it soaked in from the bottom and after taste testing it I got a WOOHOOOO sugar rush.
And I'm making this again, just as soon as I get a stash over overripe bananas in the freezer, I'm thinking I should have enough by next week...


Yield: 12 servings

Banana Bundt Cake

prep time: 15 minscook time: 1 hourtotal time: 1 hours and 15 mins
This cake is nothing like regular Banana Bread. It's not that dense and holds up beautifully.

ingredients:


Cake
3 cup AP flour
2 tsp. Baking Soda
1 tsp. Baking Powder
1 cup Salted Butter
1 1/2 cups Sugar
2 tsp. Vanilla Extract
3 large eggs, separated
4 large bananas, mashed
1 cup sour cream

Toffee Sauce
1 cup butter
1 1/2 cups firmly packed brown sugar
1 cup heavy cream

instructions:


Preheat oven to 350 degrees, grease a 12 cup bundt pan.  Set aside.
Separate the eggs, and beat the egg whites until stiff.  Set aside while you prepare the rest.   Mix the dry ingredients together, set aside  while you cream the butter, sugar and egg yolks together, until the sugar has broken down a little.  Add the mashed bananas and mix well.  Then add the sour cream and flour in two parts, alternating each one.   At the end, fold in the egg whites, carefully but making sure to blend them without leaving any little bits of egg.   Pour the batter into the bundt pan and smooth the top a little. 
Bake for 55 minutes and check for doneness after 50 minutes, increasing the baking time by 5 minutes at a time.  
Turn out onto a wire rack and remove the pan.  Let cool. 

 Make the toffee sauce while the cake is baking.    In a large sauce pan or pot, melt the butter over medium heat, then add the brown sugar.  Whisk together until the butter and sugar are well combined, let it cook for 3-4 minutes, then whisk in the heavy cream.  Continue to cook, letting it come to a boil.  Stir it constantly and let it continue to cook for an additional 5 minutes or so.   Take off of heat and allow it to cool.   This mixture will bubble up and almost double in size as it's cooking so it helps to have it in a larger pot than you think you'll need. 

As soon as the cake is cooled, pour the still warm toffee sauce over the cake in a pleasing pattern and serve.  If you wish you can keep some of the sauce back to serve with the cake. 
Created using The Recipes Generator


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Saturday, September 15, 2018

Roasted Potato and Heirloom Carrot Soup for #SoupSaturdaySwappers.

It's all my fault this month or is it that I'll just take the credit for this month's Soup Saturday Swappers theme.
I can't make up my mind which one it is.
Roasted Potato and Heirloom Carrot Soup
The theme this month or our assignment or our challenge is to make a Potato Soup.  You can use regular potatoes, red, yellow, white, purple, russet, fingerling, or sweet potatoes. ( I think I mentioned most of the major potatoes).  Potatoes have to be the main ingredient.  You can make a hot soup, a cold soup or something in between.   So here goes.

I was going to make a potato soup my niece made for us once.    It was so good and I got the recipe at the time, but I put the recipe somewhere safe and one of these days I'll find it and then watch out world, I'm coming through.

But in the meantime, I had to come up with a soup for this month's theme.

Potato Soup.

Do you have any idea how many potato soup recipes are on the internet?  Yeah, me neither, but there are a lot. 

You can go French with a lovely Vichyssoise, and it is a soup I love but I wanted something hot. And didn't feel like searching high, low and in between for leeks either. 

I looked at Ireland for their potato soup, but it didn't appeal. 

I even looked at my Danish roots but didn't feel like cooking a ham to get the stock.

So I did a search of my freezer and my fridge, and look what I came up with.

I had some lovely pork stock in the freezer as well as some chicken stock and there was most of a bag of Heirloom Carrots in the produce bin along with a couple of parsnips.   I'm calling this Roasted Potato and Heirloom Carrot Soup.  It can be made totally vegetarian or add some pork to it for a heartier take. 

And you know what happens when you roast vegetables.
They get sweet and luscious and totally yummy.
And you have to stop eating the freshly roasted vegetable so you can leave some for the soup.
Wait, that was me. 
To start with I tossed the peeled potatoes, parsnips and carrots in a little olive oil, sprinkled them with a teensy bit of sea salt and roasted them in the oven for over 20 minutes at 450 degrees.
Roasted veggies for Roasted Potato and Heirloom Carrot Soup
 I turned them over after ten minutes and then turned the broiler on for an additional  2 minutes.
Roasted veggies for Roasted Potato and Heirloom Carrot Soup
  While they were roasting I had the chicken and pork stock on top of the stove simmering away.    I tasted it for seasoning and turned off the heat.  As soon as the potatoes and carrots were done, I put them onto a cutting board and chopped them up a little more.
Roasted Potato and Heirloom Carrot Soup
The soup was really thin so I added a little roasted garlic instant potato flakes to the soup, let it cook another minute to thicken just a tad and then I dumped the chopped potatoes, carrots and parsnips into the pot, and let it come back up to temp. 
I added some cooked pork to the top of my bowl that I'd browned a little and decided that from now on, the pork will definitely be a part of the main soup.  And of course a sprinkle of chives.
Roasted Potato and Heirloom Carrot Soup


Yield: 2-4 Servings

Roasted Potato and Heirloom Carrot Soup
Roasted Potato and Heirloom Carrot Soup

prep time: 5 minscook time: 21 minstotal time: 26 mins
This is a great soup for those cooler temperatures. A quick and hearty soup, which can ready in just a half hour or so and tastes like you've been slaving all day. Serve with a crusty roll for great tasting meal.

ingredients:


 6- 8 cups pork or chicken stock
2 potatoes
2 orange carrots
2 purple carrots
2 white carrots
2 parsnips
1/4 cup EVOO
salt to taste
1/2 cup finely chopped cooked pork
1/2 to 1 teaspoon oil
2-4 teaspoons instant garlic potato flakes
1-2 teaspoons chopped chives

instructions:


Turn oven on to 450 degrees.  Get out a pan with sides.  Spray with some non stick spray. 
Peel the potatoes, carrots and parsnips.   Cut the potatoes into quarters, and set aside.  Cut the carrots into chunks.  Sprinkle them with some olive oil and a little sea salt.  Toss together and place on baking sheet.  Roast at 450 degrees for 10 minutes, turn over and roast an addition 10 minutes or until the vegetables are done.  If the veggies aren't browned, place them under the broiler for an additional 2- 3 minutes. 
While the vegetables are roasting, bring the stock to a boil, cook for a couple of minutes, and add some instant potato flakes.  I used the roasted garlic kind.  Whisk it into the stock and let cook for a couple of minutes.
Take the roasted vegetables out of the oven, and do a rough chop.  Add to the soup and let it come to a quick boil.  Remove from heat.
In a small pan, heat the teaspoon of oil, and add the finely chopped cooked pork.  Let it brown a little.
Serve the soup in bowls and add the browned pork to the top.  Garnish with a little chopped chives for color. 

Note:  You could also make this a total veggie soup by using vegetable stock and not using any pork.  Although I think some fried crispy tofu would taste good with it as well. 
Created using The Recipes Generator
I've also been a teensy bit busy this week.  I baked not only a wedding cake but also a grooms cake and am heading down to decorate the groom's cake right now.  Both of which are in the freezer for now.

It's a black velvet cake with black cream cheese frosting and a batman theme.   Should be fun.
Check out the final cakes.  I was rather pleased with myself.

In the meantime, check out some other great soups.



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Monday, September 10, 2018

Breakfast Biscuits for Baking Bloggers

It's time for the monthly Baking Bloggers Challenge.  OK so it's more of a theme but still...
Sue of Palatable Pastime is our hostess and every month we get a challenge or theme.
This month we're tasked with making either Biscuits or Scones.
And I was torn.  I love both of them.   I grew up in a place that has a strong British influence and met many varieties of scones over the years.   I made some really lovely scones a couple of months ago for an Improv Cooking Challenge and was tempted to make some more but I've really been craving biscuits lately as well.
And... 
I admit it, I kinda copied a recipe but made it my own cause I used some of my Master Mix to make these biscuits. 
Breakfast Biscuits for #BakingBloggers
And can I say WOW!!!!  I didn't expect them to be this good, quite frankly.
I wanted a biscuit that could be made quickly, eaten on the run, and not only taste good but have enough good stuff inside so that it was more of a 'stick to the ribs' kinda biscuit.

Now I do live in the south and biscuits are pretty common around here.   We've been known to cheat and buy ours at places like Popeye's, and other fast food places sometimes, because the biscuits are that good.

But, we also make our own and it's one of those things, that every family has their own favorite recipe and no one makes theirs as good as their Memaw's or their Granny's or Dad's.  

When I was still cooking for the Senior Center a few years ago now, I used to make these biscuits, called 7 UP Biscuits using Bisquick.  And when I made them, they disappeared, fast.   They were actually requested, a lot.

But as I said before, I wanted to make something a little more substantial, and this is what I came up with.
I forgot to melt some butter for the tops, so I just spread a little softened butter on top.
Breakfast Biscuits for #BakingBloggers
 And it didn't hurt a bit.  They do spread out a bit though.
Breakfast Biscuits for #BakingBloggers
 Just out of the oven, the steam was rising when i split one open.
Breakfast Biscuits for #BakingBloggers
If you add an egg in the middle...
Breakfast Biscuits for #BakingBloggers
And top it with more cheese, it's kinda like the place with the big capital letter on it.
Breakfast Biscuits for #BakingBloggers
 But it tastes 1000% better.   
Breakfast Biscuits for #BakingBloggers
The rest of the biscuits are wrapped and in the freezer for a quick breakfast/lunch/snack.

I'm thinking one or maybe even two of these would satisfy most teen's appetites as well. 

Yield: 2-4 Servings

Breakfast Biscuits

prep time: 10 minscook time: 15 minstotal time: 25 mins
Bake them ahead of time and freeze for a grab and go breakfast. Or just serve them hot with a an egg on the side if you like.

ingredients:

2 cups Master Mix
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 cup + Sour Cream
1/4 cup clear soda 
2 tablespoons + 1/4 cup butter, melted
1/2 cup small cubed ham
1/2 cup small cubed Monterey Jack Cheese
1 teaspoon chopped chives - optional but good

instructions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Melt butter.  Grease a pan and pour 2 tablespoons melted butter into a pan with sides, tilt to cover the entire pan with butter.  
Whisk the soda and sour cream together.  Add the ham and cheese to the dry ingredients and then add the wet. Mix together lightly, until it is just combined.  Turn out onto a floured surface and pat into a rough rectangle. Cut into squares and place the biscuits into the pan, and brush the tops with the remaining butter.  Bake for 15-20  minutes or so or until the tops are browned and biscuits are done. They should split in half easily when done.  Eat right away as is or add an egg and some cheese to the middle.   You can also bake these in advance, stick them in the freezer and just zap them, and eat as a quick grab and go breakfast on the way to work or school. 

Created using The Recipes Generator

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