Almond Flour Banana Muffins

I took advantage of Genevieve’s nap this morning and made some “healthy” muffins. They don’t have any oil or butter and are actually delicious! It also helped me use up a huge bag of almond flour that has been sitting in the pantry for over a year.

 

Almond Flour Banana Muffins, recipe adapted from Honest Fare

  • 9oz almond flour + some extra for topping
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 oz sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 3 bananas (approximately 1/2 lb peeled) + extra slices for topping
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • Pinch of coarse sea salt (optional for topping if you like)
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder (if doing cocoa center)
  1. Preheat oven to 300F. Grease baking pan of choice (either an 8-9 inch fluted flan tin, a bread dish or muffin tin) and dust with flour OR lightly moisten baking paper and line tin.
  2. Whizz 9 oz almonds and baking powder in food processor until finely ground, but be careful not to go too far or you’ll end up with almond butter. Set aside in bowl.
  3. Whizz eggs, sugar, bananas and cinnamon for about 5 minutes or until pale and really fluffy. Pour over almond meal and stir through.
  4. If adding cocoa powder, place 1/3 of batter into separate bowl and stir in 2 tbs of unsweetened cocoa powder. To create the chocolaty center, first pour 1/2 your original batter into baking tin, then do your dollop of cocoa batter and then pour remaining original batter to cover cocoa. Top with thinly sliced bananas and almonds. Bake about 40-45 minutes for bread and 30-35 minutes for muffins (or until top is browned and skewer comes out clean). You just don’t want to overcook in the oven because they’ll continue to cook a little as they cool. Sprinkle on sea salt immediately after removing from oven.

Applesauce

Last weekend the Lenz family brought us a huge bag of handpicked Fuji apples from their orchard. After keeping the doctor away this week, I decided to turn the last 4 pounds into applesauce. It was so simple that I’m now inspired to go apple picking and test out some other varieties. (Seattle, I miss you!) The best part about applesauce is that it’s super easy to prepare and freezes well. The Neve machine might even get some this winter if her parents don’t eat it all. Yum yum. Applesauce, inspired from Simply Recipes

  • 3 to 4 lbs of peeled, cored, and quartered apples. (Make sure you use a good cooking apple like Golden Delicious, Jonagold, Granny Smith, Fuji, Jonathan, Mcintosh, or Gravenstein.)
  • 4 strips of lemon peel – use a vegetable peeler to strip 4 lengths
  • Juice of half lemon, about 1-2 Tbsp
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 cup of water

Put everything into a large pot and bring to a boil. Cover with a lid and turn heat down to low. Simmer for 20-30 minutes until the apples are soft enough to mash easily with a spoon. Remove cinnamon stick and lemon peels. Mash with a potato masher until you’ve reached the consistency you desire. Enjoy!

Peach Blackberry Cobbler

Another peach blackberry dessert – it’s a constant theme for me this summer. It’s my favorite fruit combination and will soon be a distant memory.

Yesterday my mom and I made a cobbler using a recipe from Smitten Kitchen. Like most everything on her website, this was a winner.

Peach Blackberry Cornmeal Cobbler (adapted from Smitten Kitchen)

For the fruit
1 1/2 (about 4 cups) pounds peaches, pitted and cut into slices
1 pint (about 2 cups) blackberries or blueberries, rinsed and dried
2/3 cup packed dark-brown sugar
2 tablespoons flour
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt

For the biscuit topping
3/4 cup (3 1/4 ounces) all-purpose flour
1/4 cup fine stone-ground cornmeal (yellow or white)
3 tablespoons dark brown sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1/2 cup buttermilk

(We halved the recipe and it was enough for 4 healthy servings.)

Preheat oven to 425°F (218°C). Toss peaches with berries, sugar, flour, lemon juice, cinnamon and salt in the bottom of a 2-quart ovenproof dish (or if you’re using individual ramekins, stir together in a bowl).

Make the biscuit dough: Stir together the flour, cornmeal, brown sugar, baking powder and salt. Cut the butter into the dry mixture with your fingertips, a fork or a pastry blender. Stir in buttermilk with a rubber spatula until a wet, tacky dough comes together.

Plop spoonfuls of the biscuit dough over the filling; don’t worry about covering entire surface. Bake until the cobbler’s syrup is bubbly and the biscuit tops are browned, about 20 to 25 minutes. Let cool slightly and scoop it into bowls. Top with whipped cream, vanilla ice cream, of if you’re having an accidental run-in with this cobbler before noon, plain yogurt. Enjoy!

 

Peach Ginger and Strawberry Vanilla Jam

Last week I went on a jam-making mission to use up all of the fruit my mom has brought me this summer from their ranch in Northern CA. Making jam is no easy task with an infant so I was grateful to have the help of my husband, mom, and good friends for all or part of these adventures.

I once again used Rachel Saunders’ Blue Chair Jam Cookbook as a guide for the two jams. However, for the strawberry jam I decided to add a vanilla bean and only made 1/3 of the recipe because I wanted to freeze some of the strawberries for smoothies this winter.

Strawberry Vanilla Jam (recipe adapted from Rachel Saunders)

  • 1.3 lbs strawberries, hulled
  • 13 ounces sugar
  • 2 ounces fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 vanilla bean, seeds scraped

Place a saucer with five metal spoons in your freezer for testing the jam later.

Combine berries with the sugar and a little over an ounce of the lemon juice in a pot and allow to macerate for about an hour. Place pan over medium-low heat and cook, stirring constantly until mixture begins foaming around the edges. Slowly increase the heat to high.

Boil the mixture vigorously for about 15 minutes, gently scraping the bottom of the pan every minute or two with a rubber spatula to be sure the jam isn’t sticking. Continue to cook until the foam subsides and the mixture starts to look darker and shinier. Stir in remaining lemon juice and stir frequently. Remove from the heat and stop stirring.

To test the jam, put a half spoonful on one of the frozen spoons and return to the freezer for 3-4 minutes. Hold the spoon vertically and watch the consistency of the jam as it begins to fall. If it’s thickened to a gloppy consistency, it’s done. If not, return to the heat for another few minutes and begin the testing process all over again.

Pour the jam into sterilized jars, wipe the rims well before screwing on the lids, and put into a 250 degree oven for 20 minutes. Remove and have fun listening to the lids popping!

Peach Ginger Jam (recipe adapted from Rachel Saunders)

  • 6 lbs 5 ounces pitted and halved ripe yellow peaches
  • 3.5 lbs sugar
  • 10 ounces freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2.5 – 3 ounces finely chopped candied ginger

Day 1: Cut each peach into six equal wedges. Place the wedges in a large container. Pour the sugar evenly over the fruit, jiggle to help the sugar settle, and drizzle 8 ounces of lemon juice over the mixture. Do not stir. Press a sheet of plastic wrap directly onto the surface of the mixture so the fruit doesn’t brown. Cover and let macerate in the fridge for 3-6 days.

3-6 Days Later: Place a saucer with five metal spoons in a flat place in your freezer to test the jam later.

Remove the peaches from the fridge and transfer to a pot. Most of the sugar should be dissolved. Stir well. Taste and add more lemon if necessary. You should taste it but it shouldn’t be overpowering.

Stir in the ginger and bring the mixture to a boil over high heat, stirring frequently with a large heatproof rubber spatula. Boil, stirring frequently, for 5 mins. Remove from the heat and using a large stainless-steel spoon, skim the stiff foam from the top of the mixture and discard. Mash 2/3 of the fruit with a potato masher. Return to the heat and continue to stir over medium-high heat. Cook until the jam has thickened 25-40 minutes. Test for doneness using the same technique described above.

Posted in Jam