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Banana Bread

Banana BreadTHE VERDICT:

I know that banana bread isn’t generally that exciting. After all, you can find it in every coffee shop in the city, usually next to the ubiquitous slabs of lemon loaf. But banana bread is a great way to use up overripe bananas, and this batch of bread turned out so well (see perfect golden-brown specimen to the left) that I was inspired to share my recipe for this easy breakfast staple.

When preparing this recipe, don’t worry about getting the amount of banana exact. It will taste fine if you have a little less than a cup of banana and extra banana will only make the bread moister and more flavourful. You can also divide the mixture into muffin cups for banana muffins instead of banana bread—just watch them more carefully, the baking time is a little shorter for muffins.

A loaf will last two adults about 3-4 days depending on how thickly you slice it.

If you want to try it yourself…

THE RECIPE:

Banana Bread (source: my mom–who know where she got it from?)

3/4 cup sugar

2 eggs

1 3/4 cups flour

1/2 tsp. baking soda

1/2 cup oil

1 cup mashed banana (1-2 very ripe bananas)

2 tsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. salt

  • In a bowl: combine salt, flour, baking powder and baking soda.
  • In another bowl: combine sugar, oil and eggs. Beat vigorously until frothy. Add banana and blend thoroughly.
  • Fold into flour mixture until blended.
  • Pour into a greased bread pan.
  • Bake at 325°F for 1 hour until the crust is brown.
  • Remove pan to rack. Let stand 10 minutes. Invert pan.
  • Cut into slices.

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Spiced Pumpkin Soup with Open-Faced Sandwiches

Pumpkin soupTHE VERDICT:

This was certainly the perfect soup to usher in the fall, and you can expect lots of soup reviews from us as the weather cools as soup is one of our favourite  foods to enjoy during the chilly and rainy winter months. This soup is a breeze to prepare, so it’s a wonderful weeknight warm up. Leftovers taste even better the next day once the flavours have had time to marinate.

If you have the option when grocery shopping, select the larger can of pumpkin. We’ve used both sizes and find a standard-sized can greatly reduces the overall pumpkin flavour.

There is no need to modify this soup recipe for baby as it is a pureed soup. To thicken it and add a boost of iron, just add some rice cereal.  Zayden really enjoyed this soup, but that’s not a surprise. He’s a soup-a-holic. Whenever he has soup, he goes in to hysterics if we don’t shovel it in fast enough. Thanks to his passion for soup we’ve learned a few tricks to help speed up delivery. We thicken it with rice cereal and thicker soup results in less drips, and he can get it off the spoon more easily. We also pop an ice cube into the soup to help cool it down faster so we don’t have to blow on every spoonful.

If you want to try it yourself…

THE RECIPES:

Spiced Pumpkin Soup (source: Spark Recipes; original recipe)

Build Your Own Open-Faced Sandwich (source: Tonight’s Dinner)

1-2 slices of bread per person, toasted (we suggest ciabatta, French bread or sourdough)

A condiment of your choice, optional (we suggest Dijon mustard)

About 50 g of deli meat per person (we suggest smoked turkey, salami or black forest ham)

Sliced or shredded cheese (we suggest cheddar, swiss, jack or havarti)

Some sliced veggies of your choice (we suggest red onion, green peppers and/or tomatoes)

  • Preheat oven to 350F.
  • Spread pre-toasted bread with condiment, if using.
  • Top bread slices with meat, cheese and veggies.
  • Bake in oven until cheese is melted and bubbling, about 5-7 minutes.


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