Blackberry Banana Bread

ncBlkbryBanBrd1nm

It was just a matter of time before I made this Blackberry Banana Bread, since I love trying different banana bread recipes and blackberry season is in full swing! This recipe makes a nice, full loaf that is dense and moist and full of banana and blackberry flavor. It also has a rich buttery taste and the buttermilk gives it a great taste, too. I think this quick bread works best with fresh blackberries, but if you want to try using frozen, your baking time will be longer.

It’s getting a little hot to bake since we’re right in the middle of summer, but you can make this in the evening or early in the morning when it’s a little cooler. Hope you enjoy this bread!

BLACKBERRY BANANA BREAD by NancyC, adapted from Betty Crocker

Makes one 9 x 5″ loaf

  • 1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups mashed ripe bananas (3 to 4 medium)
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose unbleached flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 to 1 3/4 cups fresh blackberries (if your berries are big, use 1 3/4 cups)

Preheat oven to 350˚F. Grease and flour a 9×5″ loaf pan; set aside.

In large bowl, mix sugar, butter, eggs, bananas, and buttermilk until well blended.

Stir in flour, baking soda, and salt and mix just until moistened. Gently fold in blackberries, distributing evenly in batter.

Pour batter into prepared pan and bake for 62 to 65 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan 5 to 10 minutes, them remove from pan and cool completely on wire rack.

You can wrap and store the bread at room temp up to 4 days or refrigerate up to 10 days.

I’ve been having fun trying a variety of blackberry recipes–have you been doing much baking with berries?

Linked to Inspire Me Monday.

About these ads

Blackberry Peach Smoothie

ncBlkbryPchSmthienm

It’s been so hot the last few days, a smoothie sounded like the perfect thing to make! I like this recipe because it also has a peach in it–blackberries and peaches are such great summer fruits, so what a great idea to use them together in a smoothie! I found this recipe at Clean and Scentsible. If you don’t have blackberries, you can use blueberries or raspberries. Use your berries frozen–it makes the smoothie thicker, not to mention really cool and refreshing!

BLACKBERRY PEACH SMOOTHIE by NancyC, adapted from Clean and Scentsible

Makes 16 ounces–enough for 2 small smoothies or 1 large smoothie

  • 1 cup frozen blackberries (or substitute blueberries or raspberries)
  • 1 peach, sliced (and pit removed–you can peel the peach if you want–I left the skin on; or, you can use canned peaches)
  • 1 cup vanilla Greek yogurt
  • 1/2 Tablespoon flaxseed or wheat germ
  • 2 to 3 ice cubes
  • 1/2 Tablespoon honey (optional)

Add all ingredients to your blender and blend until smooth and creamy.

This really tastes great on a hot summer day! What kinds of cooling summer beverages have you been making?

Blackberry Gingerbread Muffins

ncBlkbryGingbrdMufs1nm

Usually I think of making gingerbread during the winter holidays, but here’s a summerized version in muffin form! Fresh blackberries make these muffins moist and of course the ginger and molasses give these muffins that great gingerbread taste. I had clipped this recipe from an old issue of Victoria magazine and modified it slightly. The original recipe was supposed to have made 18 muffins; I added in extra blackberries, and came up with 24 to 26 muffins, or 24 muffins and 1 mini-loaf. Making the mini-loaf works out great because you can bake it right along with your muffins–it will just need about 5 to 10 minutes extra baking time.

I also added a creamy glaze with a blackberry on top, because without any glaze or garnish these flat-topped muffins look quite plain. In other words, they are not the prettiest-looking muffins without anything on top. But they do taste great plain, so if you don’t mind them looking that way, you can skip the glaze.

I never would have thought of combining blackberries and gingerbread on my own, but I liked it alot! If you like gingerbread, you’ll have to try this out!

BLACKBERRY GINGERBREAD MUFFINS by NancyC, adapted from Victoria Magazine

Makes 26 muffins (or 24 muffins and 1 mini loaf)

  • 3 cups all-purpose unbleached flour
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 Tablespoon ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon cloves
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon allspice
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup firmly packed light or dark brown sugar
  • 1 cup unsulphured molasses
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 2 cups fresh blackberries

Preheat oven to 350˚F. Line muffin pans with 24 paper liners; set aside. Grease and flour a mini-loaf pan; set aside.

In a medium bowl, blend together flour, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, and allspice.

In a large bowl, cream softened butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Gradually add molasses, eggs (one at a time), and buttermilk and mix until everything is combined well.

Add the flour mixture all at once to the butter/molasses mixture and stir until just combined. Gently fold in the berries and mix to distribute evenly in batter.

Fill each muffin cup about 3/4 full, and put the rest of the batter in your mini-loaf pan. Bake muffins at 350˚F for 20 to 25 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean; your mini-loaf will need to bake about 5 to 10 minutes longer. Cool in pan for 5 minutes, then remove and cool completely on wire rack.

If desired, drizzle muffins with glaze…

CREAMY GLAZE and BERRY GARNISH

  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 3 Tablespoons Half & Half (light cream)
  • 26 blackberries for garnish

In a small bowl, blend powdered sugar and Half & Half until smooth and creamy. Drizzle over cooled muffins and top each muffin with a blackberry in the center.

ncBlkbryGingMufs2nm

A summery gingerbread is definitely a new thing for me! Have you tried any different twists on gingerbread?

Linked to Fiesta Friday at The Novice Gardener.

Blackberry Buttermilk Cake

ncBlkbryButtermlkCk1nm

I mentioned in my last post that I had been picking some blackberries this past week. And this is one of the recipes I made with them–Blackberry Buttermilk Cake. It’s a recipe I’ve had for awhile, clipped from a newspaper and kept … Continue reading

Blueberry Oat Banana Bread

ncBluOatBanBrd2nm

When blueberry season comes around, I love baking with those fresh berries! So I thought I’d try combining blueberries and bananas in a bread, and I also decided to add a little oatmeal–I thought oatmeal would give it a nice texture and … Continue reading

Scrambled Egg Biscuit Bowls

ncBiscBowls4nm

If you’re looking for a hearty breakfast idea, maybe even for Father’s Day, here’s a recipe I made with the Perfect Bacon Bowl. I received two complimentary bowls to try out and I read about them beforehand in this Good Housekeeping review. It … Continue reading

Whole Wheat Honey Banana Bread

ncWWhtBananaBread1nm

The first time I made this banana bread, the weather was chilly and rainy…the perfect time for baking! As I’ve mentioned before, I like trying out different banana bread recipes and decided to try a whole wheat version that I found on … Continue reading

Lemon Raspberry Muffins: Sugar-Crusted or Lemon-Glazed

ncLemRaspMuffs3nm

Lemon is such a great springtime flavor and this past weekend seemed like the perfect time to make some lemon-flavored muffins! I found a recipe on Pinterest that inspired me, and it also inspired one of my friends to convince me to make them … Continue reading

Shamrock Smoothie

ncShamrockSmthie1nm

If you want a cool, creamy treat, this smoothie is just the thing to make! It gets it’s creaminess from the tasty blend of frozen kiwifruit, banana, and key lime yogurt (you can substitute vanilla yogurt, but I really like this with the lime). There are a few other ingredients you’ll see in the recipe below and they all blend up into this wonderful smoothie that not only tastes great, but is also a delightful springy shade of green. How can you resist that?

SHAMROCK SMOOTHIE by NancyCreative, adapted from Midwest Living

Makes about 16 ounces, or 2 servings

  • 2 kiwifruit, peeled and quartered
  • 1 banana, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1/2 cup seedless green grapes
  • 1 (6-ounce) container key lime or vanilla flavored yogurt
  • 1/3 cup orange juice or white grape juice, well-chilled
  • 1/2 Tablespoon honey
  • Optional: additional kiwi fruit slices for garnish

Several hours or the night before making: Place the 2 peeled and quartered kiwifruit and sliced banana in a small freezer bag and freeze for 2 hours or until frozen (arrange fruit flat in a single layer in the bag so it doesn’t freeze into a big clump; otherwise it will be too hard to break up for blending).

When ready to make, add grapes, yogurt, juice, honey, and half of the frozen fruit (break up fruit if any pieces have stuck together while freezing). Cover and blend until smooth. Add remaining frozen fruit and blend until smooth.

Pour into glasses and, if desired, garnish with fresh kiwi fruit slices.

Hope you get a chance to enjoy this smoothie! What kinds of fun green treats are you making (or eating) for St. Patrick’s Day?

Banana Bread (Inspired by the Disneyland Hotel)

ncDisneyBBrd1nm

I was in a banana bread-making mood last weekend. And I just so happened to come across this recipe at Food.com, where they mentioned that this banana bread is served at the Disneyland Hotel. Not having ever stayed there myself, I hadn’t ever tasted their banana bread, but it sounded like a great recipe to try! After all, I’m sure they serve wonderful food at the Disneyland Hotel, right down to their banana bread. :)

I made a few small changes to the recipe and decided to add some pecans to it, too. My baking time was also a little less than what the original recipe had mentioned. This is a really good basic banana bread with a rich, buttery taste, so if you have some ripe bananas you will need to keep this recipe in mind! The batter is thick and creamy and bakes into 2 yummy 8 x 4″ loaves. And believe me, you will be glad you have 2 loaves of this banana bread to enjoy!

BANANA BREAD (INSPIRED BY THE DISNEYLAND HOTEL),  slightly adapted from Food.com

Makes two 8 x 4″ loaves

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons milk
  • 2 cups mashed ripe bananas
  • 1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 3 cups unbleached flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 350˚F. Grease and flour two 8 x 4″ loaf pans; set aside.

In large bowl, cream softened butter and sugar until well blended. Add eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Add milk, mashed bananas, and vanilla, mixing everything well.

In medium bowl, whisk together flour, salt, and baking soda. Add dry ingredients, a third at a time, to mixture in large bowl, stirring until everything is well blended. Fold in chopped pecans and stir until they are evenly incorporated into the batter.

Spoon batter in equal amounts into two 8 x 4″ loaf pans and bake at 350˚F for 52 to 55 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

Remove from oven and cool for 10 minutes, then remove loaves from pans and cool completely on wire rack.

ncDisneyBBrd2nm

Or, if you want to eat this banana bread warm, let it cool for a total of about 15 to 20 minutes–it will be easier to slice if you let it cool a little.

I’ve been to Disneyland, but not Disney World. I haven’t stayed at any of the Disney Resort Hotels, but I’m sure they would be wonderful! Have any of you stayed at a Disney Hotel and have you had their banana bread?

I’m linking this to Fiesta Friday at The Novice Gardener.

Tropical Spinach Smoothie

nctropSpinSm1nm

In my last post, I shared a recipe I had made with OrganicGirl Super Greens, the Super Greens Fiesta Salad, and now I’ll be sharing a another recipe I made with OrganicGirlWinnersOrganicGirl Baby Spinach, the Tropical Spinach Smoothie. But first, I’ll tell you who the 5 Giveaway winners are from the OrganicGirl Greens giveaway on that salad post!

Congratulations to Jhuls (comment #7), Keshakeke (comment #10), Deal Housewife (comment #20), Table of Colors (comment #24), and Rachel (comment #33)! I’ll be emailing each of you to let you know in case you don’t happen to see this and will give your email to OrganicGirl so they can contact you about delivering your greens!

Thanks so much to all of you who participated in the giveaway! I wish you all could have won some greens, but as a consolation prize, here’s a recipe for a spinach smoothie that I think you’ll really like! This is a wonderful smoothie–it’s thick but not too thick. It’s sweet but not too sweet. It tastes great and it’s very, very healthy. And it’s an easy, tasty way to add more spinach to your diet.

TROPICAL SPINACH SMOOTHIE by NancyCreative, adapted from OrganicGirl

Makes 12 ounces, enough for 1 large or 2 small servings

  • 1 1/2 cups (well packed) OrganicGirl Baby Spinach (or substitute Baby Kale or Super Greens mix)
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 1/2 of a small to medium size banana
  • 1 cup frozen mango
  • 1 Tablespoon honey

Put all ingredients in a high-power blender and blend on high until smooth. Pour into a glass (or glasses) and serve.

Have you made smoothies with spinach before? What other kinds of recipes do you like to use spinach in?

Cranberry Raisin Nut Toasted Oat Cereal

ncCranRasNutTstOatCer1nm

Last spring, I made some granola bars, and it was then that I discovered how much I loved the taste of toasted oats. After I toasted the oats for that recipe, I sampled some right from the pan and they were really good just by themselves–they had a richer, slightly nuttier flavor after being toasted. So I made a note to try making some toasted oat cereal sometime. Which brings me to this post. :) I finally got around to toasting some oats and making a healthy homemade cereal!

This cereal is not sweet like granola, so it may not appeal to everyone.  It’s not as crunchy as granola either, since it doesn’t have a honey or maple syrup coating. But if you like the idea of eating pure toasted oats with dried cranberries, raisins, and nuts mixed in, then this cereal is for you! You can serve it with milk or, if you like your cereal more on the crunchy side, serve this over some vanilla yogurt–it will hold its crunchiness longer. That’s actually how I prefer to eat it, with vanilla yogurt. And I like eating it with a drizzle of honey or maple syrup on top, too–that makes it sweet enough for me! This cereal is a nice option for those of you who like to have oatmeal for breakfast–kind of like a toasted version of oatmeal!

CRANBERRY RAISIN NUT TOASTED OAT CEREAL by NancyCreative

Makes about 10 cups

  • 7 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup light olive oil
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups walnuts, coarsely chopped (or pecans)
  • 3/4 cup dried cranberries
  • 3/4 cup raisins, golden or dark
  • Milk or vanilla yogurt
  • Honey or maple syrup for drizzling over cereal

Preheat oven to 375˚F. Line a 13 x 18″ baking pan with aluminum foil or parchment paper (or use 2 cookie sheets).

In large bowl, combine oats, oil, and salt, mixing until oats are evenly coated. Transfer mixture to baking sheet and spread into an even layer. Bake, stirring oats every 10 minutes, for 25 to 30 minutes, until light golden brown.

Remove pan from oven and lower temperature to 350˚F. Sprinkle the chopped nuts evenly over the toasted oats and bake for an additional 5 to 7 minutes. Remove from oven and let oat/nut mixture cool about 10 minutes, then put mixture into large bowl. Add the dried cranberries and raisins, stirring until all ingredients are evenly distributed.

Serve in cereal bowls with some milk or vanilla yogurt and add a drizzle of honey or maple syrup on top. Cereal can be stored in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.

Another way you can make this–just toast the oats for about 30 minutes at 375˚F (stirring every 10 minutes) without adding the nuts; then, when you’re serving the toasted oat cereal, you can top it with fresh fruit, chopped nuts, a drizzle of honey or maple syrup, or whatever other toppings you like.

FYI, when you are toasting your oats, your kitchen will definitely have a toasty-oaty scent for a few hours! Which makes it kind of cozy on a cold day. Have you toasted oats before?

I’m linking this up to Fiesta Friday at The Novice Gardener.