Easy Banana Bread

January 31, 2010

Banana bread is simply one of my favorite things to bake. I have tried several different recipes in the past; some that I have liked, and other were okay. But I keep on going back to this hand-written recipe that I can’t even remember the source. I have been making this version below for probably over 15 years. There is nothing fancy or special with recipes; it calls for standard pantry items and very ripe bananas. I usually wait until my bananas are very brown that they give off these incredible sweet smell, then I would look forward to making these on the weekends’ morning.

If you want to try other varieties, here are the two that I have posted in the past:

Banana Bread, Flour Bakery Famous
Banana Bread, Kona Inn

Ingredients
1-3/4 cups flour
1-1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
2/3 cup butter/margarine, softened
2/3 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 tsp salt
2 large eggs
1 cup mashed ripened bananas
2/3 cup chopped walnuts

Directions

Blend in everything, bake at 350 degree for an hour in a 10×4 pan.

Yield: 10 servings

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Turkey Lasagna

January 24, 2010

My husband Red has been taking over the cooking duty at our household for the past couple of months. This is a recipe that we often make at our house, but I just realized, I have never posted. The recipe was inspired by Ina’s famous Turkey Lasagna Recipe, but we have modified it to the ingredients that we have readily available at the house. It’s a no-fail recipe that will be sure to satisfy your diners. Enjoy!

Ingredients

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup chopped yellow onion (1 onion)
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 1/2 pounds ground turkey (the next six seasoning will be mixed into the ground turkey)
2 tsp garlic powder
1 1/2 tsp sugar
1 tsp dried oregano
1 1/2 tsp fennel seed
1/2 tsp pepper
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes in tomato puree
1 (6-ounce) can tomato paste
1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley, divided
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil leaves
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1/2 pound lasagna noodles (no-boil)
15 ounces ricotta cheese
1 cup grated Parmesan, plus 1/4 cup for sprinkling
1 extra-large egg, lightly beaten

Directions

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Heat the olive oil in a large (10 to 12-inch) skillet. Add the onion and cook for 5 minutes over medium-low heat, until translucent. Add the garlic and cook for 1 more minute.

Mix the following six seasoning listed under ground turkey ingredient into ground turkey.

Add the seasoned ground turkey mixture and cook over medium-low heat, breaking it up with a fork, for 8 to 10 minutes, or until no longer pink. Add the tomatoes, tomato paste, 2 tablespoons of the parsley, the basil, 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Simmer, uncovered, over medium-low heat, for 15 to 20 minutes, until thickened.

Meanwhile, fill a large bowl with the hottest tap water. Add the noodles and allow them to sit in the water for 20 minutes. Drain.

In a medium bowl, combine the ricotta, goat cheese, 1 cup of Parmesan, the egg, the remaining 2 tablespoons of parsley, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Set aside.

Ladle 1/3 of the sauce into a 9 by 12 by 2-inch rectangular baking dish, spreading the sauce over the bottom of the dish. Then add the layers as follows: half the pasta, half the mozzarella, half the ricotta, and one third of the sauce. Add the rest of the pasta, mozzarella, ricotta, and finally, sauce. Sprinkle with 1/4 cup of Parmesan. Bake for 30 minutes, until the sauce is bubbling.

Yield: 8 servings


MSC: Coconut Cupcakes

January 18, 2010

I know, I know. I have been MIA for the past two months–and the only two new recipes that I have been able to make have been the cupcakes for the Martha Stewart’s Cupcakes Club. Jennifer from Cinema Cupcakes chose Coconut Cupcakes on pages 28-29 for January. I was glad to try this recipe since I have been wanting to make coconut cupcakes for a while now. I wasn’t able to find unsweetened coconut flakes, so I gave up and decided to just use all sweetened flakes since I was already running late on posting this recipe.

These cupcakes were actually delicious without frosting; although my husband still wanted the frosting on top anyways. I decided to skip the 7-minute frosting and instead used Martha’s fluffy vanilla frosting, which was excellent. Thanks for the great selection.