Recipe: Gingerbread Banana Bread

I don’t buy bananas often. When I do they have a purpose and lately that has been peanut butter banana toast. However, there was one sole banana that got forgotten until it was a little too mushy for toast.

I’m very pro-banana bread, but I also am pro-getting down in the kitchen with new ideas.

Since I bought the Sarah Lynn Fitness Healthy Cookie Cookbook, I have a few more eccentric ingredients hanging around like molasses. I know you may not think of that as weird, but really, what else do you use it for other than ginger people? Cookies, not red heads.

Anyway, I’m big on Pinterest-ing and I’m big on modification where necessary – you should have that understanding by now. Most things aren’t recipes, it’s just tossing stuff together and hoping for the best. But sometimes, just sometimes, I’ll skim a recipe to get to the gist of it and then create my own thing taking what I’ve learned.

After searching for “banana recipes” I came across gingerbread banana bread from Chocolate Covered Katie. For the original recipe click here.

I had one banana and in that moment it’s purpose was for bread, so I skimmed her recipe and decided I had everything I needed, but I need to shrink the recipe down for size.

Here’s my version.

What You’ll Need

  • 2 mini bread pans
  • 105g of banana (that’s what mine weighed)
  • 1 and 1/4 cup of unsweetened almond milk
  • 1T of molasses
  • 1T of maple syrup
  • 1tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup of all purpose flour
  • 1/8 tsp of baking powder
  • 1/4tsp of baking soda
  • dash of salt
  • cinnamon
  • ginger
  • nutmeg
  • cloves
  • 1T of splenda

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Spray mini bread pans with cooking spray. If you don’t have mini pans, you can use a regular sized pan, however, this will change the cooking time because you will have a thinner loaf.
  3. In a medium sized mixing bowl, blend all wet ingredients.
  4. Slowly add in dry ingredients to ensure they’re mixed well spices to taste!
  5. Using a second bowl, place it on a food scale. Tare or zero on the scale and add the batter from the first bowl to the second bowl. Once you have the weight you will be able to divide into two servings equally. If you don’t have a scale you can bake in one dish and cut loaf in half to the best of your ability.
  6. Pour divided batter into mini bread loaves and bake for about 20 minutes.
  7. Use a fork or tooth pick to check doneness.

Estimated nutrition per loaf: 221 calories, 1.7F/49.6C/4.2P

Nutrition may vary depending on brands of ingredients. I built the measurements of the other ingredients around the weight of the banana. If your banana is slightly larger, you may want a little more almond milk and flour, maybe a tablespoon or two of each.


Happy baking!

❤ Cristina

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Recipe: Flourless Chocolate chip and Peanut butter Muffins

I eat breakfast every morning and when my boyfriend visits, I try to make breakfast a little interesting. While I’m prepping breakfasts can be boring, but we manage to spice them up from time to time. Over Christmas, I was surfing Pinterest looking for ideas when I decided to see if there were any recipes that were lower carb and higher protein. I came across a pin for Flourless Peanut Butter Mini Blender Muffins.

The recipe was pretty easy and was made in a blender! You can’t go wrong when a recipe is that easy. I did change up the recipe a little bit, but not too much.

First, since I’m in prep I weigh everything, that includes the banana in this recipe. I also used Nuts ‘N More Toffee Crunch protein peanut butter instead of regular peanut butter. Lastly, I counted out the chocolate chips used in each muffin.  Everything else was exactly the same as the recipe I found. I got 6 perfect muffins out of this batch.

Each muffin was 1/4 cup of  batter and the macros were:

Calories: 217

Fat: 10.8g

Carbs: 20.2g

Fiber: 4.3g

Protein: 10.9g

What I learned from this recipe is that it’s ok to use a hand mixer. A lot of my peanut butter fell to the bottom of the blender and I had to hand mix it in. That was a pain. These were super tasty and great to have with my egg whites. They make a good snack during the day too.

These made the boy pretty darn happy and anything that he also likes makes it easier for me to get through prep without extra cooking :]

Do you have a muffin recipe that you “go to” or like to change up sometimes?

 

❤ Cristina

Food from the sea

Today was the last day off of my 5-day weekend, but I have Friday off, so it’s still a short work week for me! Anyway, there was a lot of different seafood items on sale this week at the store, including wild caught haddock fillets. They’re frozen and fit perfectly in my freezer. They were also buy one get one, I may have bought 6 bags…

I’ve had haddock a few times when I was living in New York… thank you fish fry fundraisers, but that’s the only time I’ve had it. I’ve never cooked it and I typically don’t make stops in the seafood section of my local grocer. This was down right ballsy of me. So this is what I came up with.

Baked Haddock with Basil Pesto.

 

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All I did was rinse the fillets once I took them out of the serving size packets and rubbed 2 tablespoons of Classico Basil Pesto. It’s made with olive oil so I didn’t have to grease the baking sheet. I cooked them at 350 for 18 minutes.

I was surprised that there wasn’t a smell with the haddock when I was cooking it. It tasted great too. Not too fishy and I think it tasted better baked than deep fried. I LOVE deep fried food, so that’s saying something. I’m really glad I stocked up too because this will be a staple along with chicken and ground turkey in my journey to lose fat, gain muscle and become a bikini competitor. It’s also completely paleo!

Do you have any recipe ideas for fish that you like to make?

 

❤ Cristina

Recipe Paleo Sweet Potato Fries

I have a weakness for French fries and I will admit I have been know to sit at the bar at Red Robin and get bottomless fries. I usually max out at 3 helpings for fries with honey mustard when it’s been a bad day. This recipe is a great alternative to the deep fried goodness of the white potato.

Sweet potatoes are dynamic and can be made into a bunch of things. Sometimes I like them made up sweet and mashed and sometimes I like them salty.

What you’ll need

1 large sweet potato

Olive oil

Sea salt

 

Equipment

Large knife

Veggie peeler

 

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 350

2. Peel potato and rinse

3. Cut potato in half, then quarter, then slice into fry-size pieces

4. Toss potato pieces in a little olive oil in a bowl until coated lightly

5. Dump potatoes onto a baking sheet and sprinkle with sea salt

6. Bake for 15 minutes

 

Notes

A large potato makes enough for two people. Depending on your oven and if the temperature is off, you may need to keep them in longer or less.

 

 

 

 

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New recipe and some breakfast in bed

A few weeks ago I started making my own fruit bars and I had bought both pitted date paste and whole pitted dates from a local international market. I haven’t used the whole pitted dates until last night. I had no idea what to make with them other than the bars.

Thanks to Pinterest, I found a crockpot recipe that calls for pitted dates, apples, and pecans as the main ingredients. Turns out, it’s from a blog on blogspot called Feeding Ger Sasser. You can get the recipe I used here. There’s no special name for it, but it tastes pretty special :]

 

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Pitted Dates

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Post-crockpot to bowl picture

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Breakfast in bed on Easter morning

 

Some notes. I could’ve cooked this a little longer, my apples are a little crunchy still, but it’s still really good. Maybe adding a little water to the mixture might have helped break the apples down a little more.

This made for a great breakfast this morning, while I watched Hop. I don’t celebrate Easter so I plan on relaxing and working around the apartment today and I have a ribeye pulled from the freezer for dinner tonight :] Bring on the wine!

I hope everyone has a great day with family and friends!

❤ Cristina

Recipe: Paleo Breakfast Muffins

Two recipes from my 50 in 2014 list in one week; it’s definitely been a busy week and one where change is welcome! I found this recipe as a pin on Pinterest, but turns out the blog is also a WordPress blog called Pop an Egg on It.

The blogger, Katy, is a mother and has a passion of cooking. She’s battled a lot of eating issues and stomach issues. She discovered paleo and has lost weight and become healthier as a whole person. Her blog is mostly if not all paleo recipes and I can’t wait to try others because this one rocked!

Katy’s breakfast muffins remind me of making paleo pancakes with eggs and a banana when I was prepping them, but with some oil, coconut, honey and almond meal these are so far from the banana bread smelling pancakes.

This batch made 8, which is what Katy said it would make.

 

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yay batter!

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post oven- yes the unwrap one was eaten :]

 

They came out fluffy and light. Typically, I think almond meal can be a little chewy and sometimes dense, but these were just like cupcakes. I had set the oven for 350 since I was making other things, and I have never been more happy that I have an oven temperature gauge because the oven was heated to 450!

This little guys only needed 10 minutes and they were done. I can’t win with my oven, not at all.

I have no idea what a serving would be, but it’s safe to say eating one with something else would be a good call. It wouldn’t be hard to eat them all. Katy’s post even suggests mixing in other things like chocolate chips or blueberries to make them interesting. I’ll have to make a variation next time :]

50 Recipes for 2014: Coconut Flour Pizza Crust

I made another one of the recipes on my 50 for 2014 list the other night. This one I found on Pinterest, but it’s from another WordPress blogger, Enjoying Healthy Foods.

The blogger, Lindsay, is a wife and mother and a lover of food. Her blog shares her experiences with food, the good, the bad and the flops! You can find the recipe for coconut flour pizza crust here on her site.

Here are some pictures from my pizza making adventure.

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I used canned coconut milk, instead of the carton kind. They’re very different in how they mix and cook.

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Coconut milk and eggs

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crust baking in the oven

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Pre-cooked toppings

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Post- cooked toppings

 

I put tomatoes and cheese on my pizza because I was being a little lazy. I really want to make this again and make a buffalo chicken pizza or my favorite Hawaiian with extra pineapple :]

Notes

The crust is sweeter than normal pizza crust, but it fits perfectly with tomato sauce and it’s not overly noticeable. I probably should’ve cooked my crust a little longer than I did because it wouldn’t have been as soft, but I don’t mind eating my finger foods with forks if necessary :]

While it doesn’t completely replace pizza, this is a great alternative that I recommend to anyone who likes to play with healthy alternatives.

Recipe: Slow Cooker Banana Bread

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What You’ll Need

Dry Ingredients

  • 2 cups almond flour or almond meal
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts

Wet Ingredients

  • coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup unsalted grass-fed butter
  • 1 cup pure maple syrup
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 cups mashed bananas
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract

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Equipment

  • Crockpot
  • 2 bowls
  • handmixer

 

Directions

  1. Grease crockpot with coconut oil
  2. In a large bowl combine all dry ingredients and set aside
  3. In a second bowl combine butter and maple syrup
  4. Add eggs into the second bowl, one egg at a time
  5. Add bananas into the second bowl
  6. Lastly add vanilla
  7. Combine both bowls
  8. Add batter to crockpot and set crockpot on high and cook for 2 hours
  9. To let bread to cool, remove from crockpot and slice

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Paleo Sweet Potato Mash

Happy Sunday!

Since today was a rainy day in New England, I spent half my day in bed watching Mad Men on Netflix (Oh Don Draper!) and the other half in the kitchen. Since I started eating paleo in the fall, I have found a bunch of recipes for veggies I wouldn’t have thought to try, this one included.

As a lover of food, Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays, and this is kind of a spin on sweet potato casserole.

What You’ll Need

4 small sweet potatoes or 2 large

water

raw honey to taste

 

Directions

1. In a medium pot add water and set to high

2. Peel and cube sweet potatoes

3. Add potato chunks to water and let boil for 5 minutes

4. Drain potatoes and mash

5. Add raw honey to taste. I used a tablespoon and it was sweet enough.

 

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Notes

Some of the recipes I have found call for butter and brown sugar, but to cut out fat and processed sugar I added organic raw honey. Also, I used small potatoes because they cook faster and are easier to mash up.

Whatever I don’t eat with lunch tomorrow, I’ll make sweet potato pancakes with :]

 

What’s your favorite veggie dish that you like to change up?

 

❤ Cristina