Banana Bread (Complete)

Banana Bread (In Process)

I used the following recipe: http://allrecipes.com/recipe/banana-banana-bread/

Please note that I added two caps full of ginger brandy to this mixture and some chopped walnuts. I let the butter soften just enough so I could mix it with an electric mixer. That is what leaves the little clumps you see in the photo. The reason for this? My mom always did it like that!

Edit—-

And here is the finished product. It needed less time to cook than the recipe stated. I put it in for 60 minutes and while I checked when it had 20 minutes left, it still needed another 5 to go. I always end up with a darker-looking banana bread in this oven. Next time I may use foil.

Banana Bread (Complete)

Banana Bread (Complete)

In the Kitchen

I am in the kitchen as I type this, currently preparing myself for some baking. I have two bananas that need to be used up, so banana bread it is. I also want to make some cardamom bread, and experiment with the dough a bit. We shall see when/if I prevail. But, dishes must be washed first, and this is a must. It’s fun to cook, but if things aren’t tidy and you don’t clean as you go, you’re going to be left with a horrid mess. Which means less time for eating. Which is bad.

Posts to come.

(CompetentChef)

Rose and Pistachio Cookie Bars

This chef has become one of my heroes! ❤

(CompetentChef)

My Fancy Pantry

I’ve had the idea for these cookie bars for quite awhile.  In fact, it’s a recipe that’s been sitting in the recesses of my mind, begging to be created.

The idea came to me one night while I was reading.  For some reason all my best recipe ideas have popped up when I’m relaxing and enjoying someone else’s writing.  I’m not quite sure what triggered the thought, but at that moment I decided I needed to combine the flavors of rose and pistachio in a cookie.

It had to be done. 

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{reflections on food} Eat Vegan Before 6

I think people are more likely to resist dieting when there is a lot of restriction. This diet basically says, you can still eat what you like, but not until the end of the day. I could see starting this one day a week and gradually increasing as you learn new recipes and things to try. For a big meat-eater like myself, it would take some getting use to. I think I would have a hard time giving up yogurt and cheese. The other issue is that I like to make soups with meat. I also have a blood disorder so B12 and Iron have been my best friend as of late.
When I was pregnant with my daughter, I found I did not like meat very much and my iron levels dropped significantly. I was bruising easily and just feeling incredibly sluggish. When I began to eat meat once again, I started to feel better. I have more energy and the bruising is minimal at best. This dieting method, VB6, is certainly something I would consider trying.

(CompetentChef)

from scratch club

I have been thinking a lot about diet in the last couple of years, partly as a result of writing for this blog, partly because I have had a sedentary job for nearly two decades and it is wreaking havoc on my aging body.  I do lots of things right, I exercise by walking up 20 flights of stairs at work nearly every day, I stand up at my desk until the afternoon instead of sitting, I walk my dogs twice a day, covering around 2 miles with them.  I trot with my younger dog early in the morning in a third walk.  I lift small weights in the office.  I pretty much only eat meat socially.  But I have a hard time resisting the brownies people bring in to work and a hard time not drinking too much wine with dinner and a hard time not taking thirds…

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Red Extravaganza – Lobster Frannie’s Way

I usually prefer not to cook lobsters myself. Granted, I love to eat them, but I’ll turn their head away from my view when I do. I’ve always done it and I don’t know why. It’s not a bad thing to have a connection to your food, but I have a hard time bringing myself to cook these tasty creatures. This is a fear I need to rid myself of.

(CompetentChef)

Lobsters are gross, and I’m a terrible New Englander.

(IncompetentChef)

Mastering The Art Of Pigging Out - My Life In Food - John C. Picardi

alobster 6
When Frannie called to invite my parents and I to dinner all he had to say was, “Hello John,” and my immediate response was, “We’d love to, when and what time?”

Dinner at cousin Frannie’s house is always a phenomenal treat especially when he is making the old family recipe, Lobster in tomato sauce, a dish he has made for my parents and me a few luscious times before. This brilliantly red extravaganza is one of his specialties and it is quite frankly earth shatteringly and outrageously delicious. Upon first bite of this masterpiece I always become instantly happy I’m related to Frannie, and not only that, any person who murders lobsters for family members is aces in my book.

alobster 2

Frannie doesn’t mess around here, he uses fat lobsters with claws big enough to snap your head off, San Marzano Tomatoes, virgin olive oil, red hot pepper flakes and garlic. It’s a straight…

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Dear Bertucci’s

Dear Bertucci’s,

I do enjoy your food, but I have to admit I have not been amazed by it. I have been to a few restaurants of yours in my state of residence, and I just feel that the menu is lacking a bit. I realize you downsized to make things easier and I applaud you for your efforts. My taste buds, however, are never that amazed by the available menu. Your place is clean, neat, and chic; your service is wonderful and you hire persnickety people who care about the work that they do. But I must admit that the real reason I keep returning to your establishment is because of your dinner rolls.

Bertucci’s, please consider becoming a bakery. You will also have to sell your olive oil dipping sauce as well.

A Loyal Dinner Roll Customer (CompetentChef)

PS: your italian cheesecake is amazing (IncompetentChef)

Chocolate, cream cheese cake bars

I must make these at some point with a chocolate chip cookie recipe. 0.0

Crafting and Cooking

I brought the pan of these (ok… I hoarded about three for myself) to work. They got rave reviews, although I had a hard time trying to figure out what to call them. I kept saying dessert bars. I got the recipe from Averie Cooks and they were originally called “White and Dark Chocolate Cream Cheese Chocolate Cake Bars.” A mouthful! And I mean… these are a mouthful too. A deliciously, gooey and amazing mouthful.

White and Dark Chocolate Cream Cheese Chocolate Cake Bars 8

Ingredients:

For the cake layer:
– 1 box of chocolate cake mix
– 1 stick (1/2 cup) of softened butter
– 1 egg
– 1 teaspoon vanilla
– 1-2 tablespoons water

For the top layers
– white chocolate chips
– semi-sweet, milk or dark chocolate chips (I used dark)
– 1 can of sweetened condensed milk
– 4 oz. of cream cheese, softened
– 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla

White and Dark Chocolate Cream Cheese Chocolate Cake Bars 1

Before you start this, line a 9×13…

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