Everyone needs a good basic banana bread recipe that is easy, moist and soft crumbed. So began my mission to find my ultimate banana bread recipe.
I choose four popular recipes, baked them at the same time, and enlisted over 25 tasters to give feedback on the baked breads. The recipes listed nuts and chocolate chips as optional, so for a consistent tasting experience of pure banana bread, I omitted all nuts and chocolate.
After collecting all the data, there was no clear winner. I think this is because the ideal banana bread is subjective. Either you like super moist chunky banana bread or you like more cake-like, semi dry tight crumb banana bread.
What recipe to make summary:
Discussion: There are three key factors in making a well-balanced fragrant loaf of banana bread.
Ovenly bakery crossed my baking radar when I was looking for a solid shortbread recipe over the holidays, they were fantastic! Ovenly is located in Brooklyn New York, and is known for their sweet and salty goodies. For example their vegan Salted Chocolate Chip cookie is very popular.
A third very popular cookie from the bakery is a salted peanut butter cookie. I thought I would give it a try, especially since it is a littler healthier than most cookies, it is gluten and dairy free.
This 5 ingredient, one bowl recipe, needs no mixer and only took me 5 minutes to whisk and stir together. Plus you most likely have all the ingredients in your kitchen. The only time crunch is having the play dough like cookie dough either freeze for 15 minutes or refrigerate for at least 2 hours. This keeps them from spreading and holding their shape. However, they still might spread, depending on what peanut butter you use. My first two batches used Jif peanut butter, the cookies spread even after spending time in the freezer. My third batch of cookies used Skippy peanut butter and I was finally successful in creating more of a puffy domed cookie. Note the cookies taste the same not matter what peanut butter and shaping method you use.
These cookies melt in your mouth and have crisp edges and a creamy center. They might become your favorite because the flavor, texture and richness will win you over.
I barely adapted the recipe. I added 1/2 teaspoon of rum (seems to be my flavoring of choice lately, really good in banana bread). I got about 8 large cookies. One could use a smaller scoop and make closer to 2 dozen cookies. The recipe suggests Skippy peanut butter to get more of a domed shaped cookie, which held true for me when I switched to this peanut butter brand.
PEANUT BUTTER VOLCANO cookie. Ultimate PB cookies piled w/ creamy peanut butter coated w/ chocolate & dusted w/ graham cracker crumbs
Sitting in my kitchen with both the Joanna Gaines’ Magnolia cookbook and Chrissy Teigen’s cookbook Cravings in front of me and the smell of over ripe bananas floating through the air I began to wonder which contained the superior banana bread recipe. Bake-off time.
The two recipes vary greatly in ingredients. The biggest differences:
It was unanimous among all my tasters, Teigen’s recipe is the winner!
Describtion of the two breads:
Although there was a clear winner, neither recipe produced the most amazing bread. Another banana bread bake-off will be needed! In the mean time start freezing your over ripe banana until the ultimate banana bake-off takes place. Stay tuned.
Here are links to the two recipes. If you decide to bake one, let me know what you think! Also if you have a good banana recipe, please share.
There is something so comforting about eating warm bread pudding. Growing up my father would request it often. I used the recipe from the Better Homes and Garden cookbook and it used raisins and an Irish whisky sauce. My father reminded me over the holidays how good bread pudding is and we ordered it one night when we were out for dinner. Super yum, I knew I needed to make it asap.
For this bread pudding recipe, I wanted vanilla to be the star ingredient, which meant adding double the vanilla extract. I also knew my kids wouldn’t eat anything with raisins, so I substituted in chocolate chips.
The recipe is easy to put together and a great use of left over bread. For this bread pudding I used croissants, challah and brioche, however you can use any mixture of bread you have laying around- french bread, cinnamon raisin, etc. The breads can be cubed or hand torn and should be few days old to be able to soak up as much of the luxurious vanilla cream base as possible. The bread pudding is then slowly baked in a hot water bath to ensure gentle even cooking, and that the custard stays creamy. If you are using a muffin pan, skip the water bath.
Served with creme anglaise, which is a thick, pourable custard. Made of eggs, milk, sugar and vanilla bean, basically the ingredients for ice cream. For a quick, fast sauce, high quality vanilla ice cream is melted it to make the most indulgent yummy sauce.
This is the perfect winter dish for breakfast or dessert.
A long time fan of popovers began when I was a little girl. Around Christmas time I would enjoy shopping at Union Square, in San Francisco, with my grandmother and parents and we would always stop by The Rotunda in Neiman Marcus for lunch. One is served these puffy delights instead of bread. They are almost the size of baseballs and have the most yummy crackly crisp golden brown shell and soft, custard like inner lining.
A popover is best described as a puffy bread product that looks like an over-sized muffin, with very thin, moist walls, somewhat hollow interior and a crispy brown crust. They can be served either as a sweet with butter and jam for breakfast or with meats at lunch and dinner
The basic ingredients of flour, milk, eggs, salt, and butter are combined using a blender and, ready in just about 40 minutes. You can use a regular muffin pan but a popover pan will produce fluffier, puffier, and taller popovers. Best served straight from the oven.
Over the years I have discovered a few secrets to baking great popovers: Try to make the batter ahead of time to allow the gluten to relax, use room temperature ingredients and no peeking while they’re in the oven!
For the sugar coating:
Mix the sugar and cinnamon in a medium bowl. Thoroughly brush each popover all over with the 1/4 cup of melted butter, then dredge each puff generously in the sugar and cinnamon mixture to coat them completely. Let cool on the wire rack.
Time to celebrate 2019! Here is a dessert for your countdown party! This great French dessert is heavenly to serve to any crowd.
The best way to describe pots de crème is a cross between pudding and crème brûlée. The name means “pot of custard” or “pot of cream.”
Pot de crème is made with eggs, cream, milk, and a flavor, often vanilla or chocolate. I decided to switched it up and go for the latin caramel taste.
Pot de crème is the perfect make ahead dessert, prepare it the day before you plan to serve it, so when it’s time for dessert, all you have to do is pull the chilled custards out of the refrigerator. Perfect for your New Year’s Eve.
Velvety and creamy, perfect sweet combination to start the new year.
Heat cream and dulce de leche over medium heat until dulce de leche is no longer thick and mixture is warm, but not boiling.
Whisk egg yolks in a medium-sized bowl, then add a small amount of the hot dulce de leche and cream and whisk vigorously, then add a little more until you have about half mixed in with the yolks.
Then put the yolk mixture back into the pot and heat on medium/medium low, while stirring.
It will be done when it has thickened and coats the back of a wooden spoon without running.
Pour into ramekins or serving dishes of choice and chill in fridge for at least two hours.
Top with a dollop of whipping cream.
First make your cookie crumbs. Place your cookies into the food processor and blend until it forms a very fine powder.
In a small saucepan, heat the butter over low heat until melted, and then stir in your sweetened condensed milk and evaporated milk until it’s all melted together. Starting with 1/2 cup of the liquid, pour it into your cookie crumbs and mix together with a spoon. Keep adding small amounts of the liquid until the cookie butter is just wet enough to stay together. Depending on how dry the cookie is to begin with, you’ll need more or less liquid.
Once your cookie butter is blended, allow it to cool in the fridge for an hour or two.
Store your cookie butter in the fridge.
His preference is eating it off the spoon.