pumpkin bread

This was my first attempt to cook using our home grown organic pumpkins.  I followed the directions found here for how to cook the pumpkin down to a puree. It was fairly easy and Arora enjoyed scooping out the pumpkin guts. We did this in 3 parts.

Step one: Harvest, wash, clean out and cook pumpkin. Let cool.

Step two: Scoop pumpkin from rind and put in blender with a bit of water. Puree.

Step three: Follow this recipe for the best pumpkin bread ever. It does make 3 medium sized loaves. We made it three ways, plain, with chocolate chips, and one with cream cheese swirled on top.

I feel very domestic when cooking with food from our garden. This year we have enjoyed carrots, potatoes, tomatoes, corn, pumpkins, spinach, broccoli, radishes, beans, onions, peas, strawberries, arugula, lettuce, and kale.


blueberry muffins

My in -laws have an abundance of blueberries this year. David took Arora over a few days ago to pick to their hearts content.  We munched on them for a few day and still had around 1 cup left. Today we decided to make some homemade muffins with them. I found this recipe here.  I made a few changes that I will (highlight) in the recipe. I already have our camera in the hospital bag, and so there are no pictures.
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (I used 1/2 cup oat flour)
1 cup fresh blueberries
1 egg white (Whole egg)
1 tablespoon vegetable oil (applesauce)
1/2 cup skim milk
2 tablespoons margarine, melted (Butter)
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup white sugar
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (205 degrees C). Use vegetable oil spray to grease 12-cup muffin tin. Set aside.
2. Mix 1/4 cup of the flour with the blueberries. Set aside. Beat egg white and 1 tablespoon oil lightly in bowl. Stir in milk and melted margarine or oil.
3. In separate bowl, mix together flour, baking powder, salt, and sugar. Sift dry ingredient mixture over egg white mixture. Stir just long enough to moisten flour. The batter will look lumpy. DO NOT OVERMIX. Fold in blueberries. Fill each tin two-thirds full with batter. Bake in preheated oven 20-25 (18 minutes was plenty) minutes or until golden brown.

baking banana bread

I am picky when it comes to eating bananas. They have to be just ripe enough but with no brown spots. My husband David is not so picky. He will gobble them up way longer then I will. The problem with this is not having old bananas for baking bread with. This last week though I bought  A LOT of bananas, hoping to have three get nice an brown.  It worked, and here is the result.

Easy Banana Bread:

1/2 c shortening

1 c sugar

1 1/2 c flour. (I use 1 cup white flour and 1/2 cup oat flour)

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp salt

3 mashed over ripe bananas

Arora helps mash the bananas

Preheat oven to 325. Grease 1 loaf pan. Cream sugar and shortening, then add dry ingredients. Then add in the bananas. Pour into pan. I put chopped walnuts on top of 1/2. Then bake for 50-55 minutes.

The bread only lasted a day and a half, but Arora keeps asking for  “buh-nanana bread” So cute. Maybe the bananas in the fruit bowl will last long enough to be made into bread this coming week too.

Refridgerator rolls

When  I was a student at BYU-Idaho I took a couple of cooking classes. One was for  learning and practicing serious cooking skills and one was focused on easy, frugal cooking.  I learned this recipe from the second class and have used it often.

Refrigerator rolls:

1 cup hot water                        1 T. yeast dissolved in 2 T. warm water with 2 t. sugar

1 t. salt                                       1 beaten egg

1 ½ T. shortening                    3 to 4 cups flour

¼ cup sugar

1. Combine hot water, salt, sugar, and shortening in a bowl. Cool to luke warm.

2. Prepare yeast, water and sugar and set aside.

3. Add yeast, softened in warm water.

4. Add the egg and half of the flour and beat well.

5. Stir in more flour—enough to make stiff (not hard) dough

6. Knead in the bowl 8 to 10 times.

(7. Put dough in oiled container, and refrigerate.

8. Take the dough from refrigerator 2 to 3 hours prior to forming into rolls.) Optional

9. Shape dough into desired variation. (crescents, or twists or cookie cut outs etc)

10. All variations need to rise in a warm place 30 to 45 minutes or until double in size.

11. Bake at 350 or 375 degrees around 15 minutes or until desired browning.

Arora using the rolling pin What I love about this recipe is you can make it now and save it for later!  The dough can be kept in the refrigerator for up to 6 days. I will often make the recipe, use half  that day and save half for later in the week when we want fresh rolls again.

If you do put it in the fridge know that it will keep rising slightly. So don’t put it in a container that is exactly the right size.

using a cookie cutterAfter we made these rolls with the heart cookie cutters the first time, my daughter only wanted heart bread for a while.  So we made them a few times in a row. Our other favorite use of the rolls is to shape them in to little bow knots. Then add this glaze as they come out of the oven:  mix 1 TBS orange zest, 1 TBS Orange juice with 1/2 cup powdered sugar. Then apply with a pastry brush.