Tuesday, May 31, 2011

The BEST Banana Bread Ever! Martha Stewart's Banana Bread, gluten free! (or not!)


This banana bread is so spectacularly delicious that I have made it some 20 times, and this is the first time I have ever been able to get a picture of it! It really is that good. I made these the other night for a Bible study, and the reaction from everyone was the same: "Wow, this is SO good."

I know it sounds like I am tooting my own horn here a bit, but I'm not: I'm not great, but the recipe sure is! I think the secret is that your cream the butter and sugar together a bit like a cake, and the addition of sour cream makes it extra moist and tender. You can also dress it up with chopped walnuts or chocolate, even though it's really great just as it is!


Martha's Best Ever Banana Bread, Gluten Free! (Or Not!)
adapted from Martha Stewart
Makes 1 loaf, or about 16 cupcakes

The original recipe is not gluten-free, but I have used all kinds of gluten-free flour combinations with great success. You can use an all purpose mix, or you can you my favorite for this recipe: equal parts sweet rice flour, white rice flour, and oat flour.

1 stick (1/2 a cup) unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1.5 cups gluten free all purpose flour (or 1/2 cup sweet rice flour, 1/2 cup white rice flour, 1/2 cup oat flour)
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 cup sour cream (or yogurt, if you want to lighten it up)
2 large mashed bananas, really ripe and spotted

1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 cup chopped chocolate

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a stand mixer, combine butter, white sugar, and brown sugar, and beat on high until butter is pale and fluffy, about 5 full minutes.

2. In a separate bowl, combine flour(s), salt, and baking soda. Whisk to combine.

3. Add in eggs to mixer, one at a time, beating until each egg is fully incorporated. Add vanilla. Blend in mashed bananas and sour cream, followed by the flour mixture. Mix on low until fully incorporated.

4. Pour into a loaf pan, or into lined muffin tin. Bake 20 - 30 minutes (20 for muffins, 30 for loaf pan), edges begin to pull away from the pan, and tester in the center comes out clean. Let cool (if you can!) and enjoy!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Best Ever Turkey Burger with Spicy Chipotle Mayo


Gentle reader,

(can I call you that? Are we good enough friends that I can call you that? Because I really want to. Pretty please?)

I have a terrible confession to make. I have been sitting on a big stack of my most favorite recipes, and most of them are not on this blog. I KNOW, RIGHT?? What kind of food blogger doesn't post their best material? Lame ones, that's who. (Bad, bad blogger. Minus one gold star for me).

In my defense, I really, really care about these recipes, because I LOVE them. I want you to love them as much as I do. So if I feel like it's not perfect (and is it ever perfect? like, ever?), I don't want to post it. If the pictures are mediocre, I won't post it. If it didn't come out exactly right this time, NO POST. Are you sensing a theme here?

It's just that I love these recipes so much, and I want you to love them too. I want to make you fall in love with chipotle turkey burgers, black bean chili, and pumpkin roulade cake the way my family has. I want you to be able to make them for your family and friends over and over again. I want them to be your favorite family recipes too.


That's not really going to happen if I never post the recipes, is it? So here you go: This is my family's favorite turkey burger recipe! It's not perfect. The pictures could be better. There could be a lot more of them. I could have written a better and more convincing arguments for just how good it is. But honestly? I'd rather just get it out there, imperfections and all.

So this is for you, gentle reader. I hope you try it, and I hope you like it as much as we do.

Best Ever Turkey Burger with Spicy Chipotle Mayo
adapted from Martha Stewart Living 2009
serves 4

If you are going to make this recipe, you have to make it with the mayo at least once. Even if you don't really like mayo, please try it! It really takes what is a good burger to a whole new level. You can find chipotle chilis in the hispanic section if your grocery store, or at ethnic or specialty markets.

1.5 lbs ground turkey
1 small red onion, minced
1/4 cup minced cilantro
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
kosher salt
black pepper
8 thin slices Swiss cheese
4 sesame seed buns
4 lettuce leaves
8 slices bacon
4 dill pickles slices
1/2 cup good quality mayo, like hellman's or best (NOT miracle whip)
1/4 cup sour cream
1 canned chipotle chili
1 teaspoon adobo sauce

1. In a medium bowl, mix together ground turkey, minced onion, minced cilantro, Dijon mustard, salt, and pepper, and shape into 4 patties. Grill over medium heat until cooked through, or bake in the oven 15 - 20 minutes until cooked through. Add slices of Swiss cheese at the end of the cooking time, and let melt over the burgers (YUM).

2. Meanwhile, puree mayo, sour cream, chipotle chili and adobo sauce until smooth. If you like, you can adjust how much chili to put in based on your tastes, but I think this amount is just right.

3. Toast buns. Build your burger: I recommend trying it with all the ingredients before you mess with it - all the flavors really do work together beautifully. Spread mayo on one of the buns. Layer together lettuce, patty, dill pickles, and bacon. Enjoy!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Ina Garten's Sour Cream Coffee Cake


Lately I've got it into my head that coffee cake would be the perfect way to start a Sunday morning. Coffee cake, fresh pot of coffee, crossword puzzle. Husband and baby sleeping in, quiet house.



Well, that's the way it goes in my head, anyway. In reality, mornings can be a bit more of a madhouse, people running around half-dressed, scrambling to find socks and keys in the morning shuffle out the door.

::sigh:: One can always hope, I suppose. And just because things can be crazy around here doesn't mean that the coffee cake, the fresh pot of coffee, and the crossword are out: they just have to be enjoyed with a master level of zen. And I'm getting pretty good at that.

Watch me go!


Ina Garten's Sour Cream Coffee Cake
Once again, Ina comes through with a winner! I think this coffee cake is incredibly moist and delicious, and it works really well gluten-free. I always use a 1:1:1 of sweet rice flour, oat flour, and All purpose gluten-free flour, but I bet there are a lot of great all-purpose mixes out there that would taste grand if you just use them cup for cup.

Ingredients: Cake
12 tablespoons (1.5 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1.5 cups white sugar
3 jumbo eggs
1.5 teaspoons vanilla extract
1.25 cups sour cream
2.5 cups gluten free flour (a light, cake type blend is best)
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
pinch kosher salt

Ingredients: Streusal
1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup all purpose gluten free flour (or any bland white flour)
1.5 teaspoons cinnamon
pinch kosher salt
3 tablespoons cold, unsalted butter, cut into pieces
3/4 cup chopped nuts (walnuts, pecans, etc.)

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a stand mixer, beat butter and sugar until pale and fluffy, 5+ complete minutes. Beat in the eggs one at a time, beating until the first is entirely incorporated before putting in the second. Add in vanilla and sour cream, mixing until just incorporated.

2. In a separate bowl, whisk together gluten-free flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add flour mixture to batter 1/3 at a time, with mixer on low, mixing until flour is just incorporated. You can finish up with a spatula to be extra careful.

3. Streusal: In a separate bowl, combine brown sugar, gluten free flour, cinnamon, salt, and butter. Pinch butter into dry ingredients until large crumbs form. Mix in chopped nuts, if using.

4. Layer batter and streusal in pan, layering 1/2 the batter and 1/2 the streusal, followed by the second 1/2 of batter and streusal. Bake in preheated oven for 40-50 minutes, until tester inserted in the center of the cake come out clean. Let cool, and enjoy!

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Spicy Tangy Old Fashioned Southern Deviled Eggs


If you want a really good deviled egg, you have to go to a real enthusiast for a recipe. Lucky for us, I happen to know such an enthusiast, or at least, I own her cookbook. It takes a real enthusiast to write a 464 page cookbook devoted entirely to eggs. I mean, can you imagine the research phase of the project? So many eggs. So many.


Lucky for us, she stuck with it, earned herself a James Beard award, and gave us a veritable Bible of winning egg recipes. And if you happen to have some extra Easter eggs to use up, or you're going to a summer barbecue, or you are just craving some really excellent old fashioned deviled eggs, you've come to the right place. This one's a winner!

Spicy Tangy Old Fashioned Southern Deviled Eggs
adapted from The Good Egg by Marie Simmons

4 large eggs, hard boiled and cooled
2.5 tablespoons good quality mayo
1.5 teaspoons Dijon mustard
hot sauce, such as Tobasco (I used Sriracha HOT Chili Sauce)
sea salt or kosher salt
freshly cracked black pepper
paprika for seasoning

Halve the eggs, and carefully remove the yolks to a separate bowl.

Mash the egg yolks with a fork until they are crumbly (Marie says to pass them through a fine mesh sieve, but I mash them with a fork. This is because she is a perfectionist and I am lazy. It's up to you how you want to do it, but I think we both know you want to be lazy with me. Think of the dishes. Convinced?)

Add 2.5 tablespoons mayonnaise, 1.5 teaspoons Dijon mustard, and hot sauce to taste. I used about 1/2 a teaspoon of Sriracha, but it really just depends on what hot sauce you use and how spicy you like it (be advised, if you like it REALLY spicy you may want to use less mayo, otherwise your filling will get a little runny. I learned this lesson on the first batch when it took about a tablespoon of Tabasco to get it spicy enough for me!)

Mix until smooth, and salt and pepper to taste.

Carefully spoon or pipe with a bag and pastry tip into the halved whites. Sprinkle with paprika and enjoy!