Jeannie's Healthy Breakfast Cookies

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What could be better than a cookie? How about a cookie that’s packed with nutrients and can be eaten anytime, especially for breakfast, guilt free?

I love cookies. They are my go-to when I want to whip up something with limited time, or don’t have much energy for other more entailed desserts. I’m sure this has NOTHING to do with the fact that cookies are also one of my favorite things to eat. It ends up turning into a win-win-win situation because I’m having fun, being productive, get to eat some of the ingredients while baking, get to eat some dough while baking, and BONUS if there is enough dough to actually be baked into cookies! So many wins.

I have to bring up the negative, however, to classic cookie baking. They’re kinda calorific and not very good for you. I’m all for eating cookies for breakfast, but that usually goes along with a sugar crash later on. What to do?

Bake healthy cookies! They have to be delicious of course, and not gross. I have just the recipe for you, made up by my mom many years ago when we needed a portable nutritious breakfast for a trip. This recipe has been in my recipe box ever since as “Jean’s breakfast cookies”, made with many adjustments because the add ins are very versatile depending on your tastes. My mom likes to be called Jeannie (not by her kids of course) so I adapted the title accordingly.

One thing this recipe is not is a taste-alike recipe to say, chocolate chip cookies with a surprise twist that it’s healthy. Nope, these cookies have a satisfyingly healthy look and taste and are upfront about it from the get go. They get positive feedback and recipe requests wherever they go!

The recipe that follows is just one version of many, many possibilities. Just keep in mind that major adjustments may need other adjustments. For example, if you don’t have any honey or maple syrup on hand for the sweetener, you could use raw or regular cane sugar. Substituting a liquid for a dry ingredient, however, will mean you may need more liquid from elsewhere. Maybe add another egg, a bit more oil, or even water until you get a cookie dough consistency once again. Other ideas to make the recipe your own:

  • Use any kind of flour you wish instead of wheat flour. Oat flour, almond flour, coconut flour…I often use wheat germ in place of part of the flour or flaxmeal, usually 1/4 cup.

  • If you want these cookies to be gluten-free, ensure that your oats are gluten-free, and use a gluten-free flour.

  • Change up the spices. Sometimes towards fall I also add a bit of ginger, nutmeg, and cloves. Cardamom is also nice.

  • Beyond dried fruit and walnuts, get creative with your add-ins! Just try not to go too far beyond 1 cup, otherwise there might not be enough dough to hold everything together. In the photos on this post I used dried apples, dried cranberries, and walnuts. I’ve also added various combinations of dried cherries, prunes, dried apricots, raisins, dates, dried figs, dried pears, fresh apples, grated coconut, pecans, hazelnuts, dark chocolate, crystallized ginger, and anything else I had on hand!

This post may contain affiliate links. If you make a purchase using these links, Jennyblogs may receive a small commission, at no extra cost to you. This helps to support Jennyblogs. For further information see the privacy policy. Grazie!

Recipe adapted from my mama


Jeannie’s Healthy Breakfast Cookies

Makes about 18-22 cookies

Ingredients:

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  • 1/2 cup / 112g olive or coconut oil

  • generous 1/3 cup / 120g maple syrup or honey

  • 2 eggs

  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

  • 1 cup / 120g all-purpose or whole wheat flour

  • 1 1/2 cups / 135g rolled oats

  • 1/2 cup / 90g flaxmeal

  • 1/2 tsp baking soda

  • 1/2 tsp salt

  • 1/8 tsp cinnamon

  • 3/4 cup / 105g nuts, roughly chopped

  • 1/2 apple, diced

  • 1/4 cup / 50g dried fruit, chopped if necessary

Directions:

Oven 375°F / 190°C. Baking sheet lined with silpat or parchment paper.

  1. In a large bowl combine wet ingredients: oil, maple syrup, eggs, and vanilla; beat with a spoon until smooth.

  2. In another medium bowl whisk together dry ingredients: flour, oats, flaxmeal, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.

  3. Add dry ingredients, nuts, apple, and dried fruit to wet ingredients, mix until well combined.

  4. Spoon generous tablespoons of dough onto prepared baking sheet and flatten slightly as they won’t spread much, leaving at least 1 inch between cookies. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until edges turn lightly golden brown and centers are no longer doughy.

Jenny’s Notes:

  • you can make flaxmeal at home by simply processing some flaxseeds in a coffee or spice grinder.

  • olive oil has a rather strong taste so if you prefer to avoid that, try going with the coconut oil option or even a neutral oil like peanut oil.

  • 3 egg whites can be substituted for the 2 eggs for cholesterol-conscience people.

healthy, nutritious, cookies, gluten-free, dairy-free, refined sugar-free, dried fruit, apple, fall spices, oats, nuts, coconut, portable
breakfast, dessert, snack
American
Yield: 12-16 cookies
Author:

Jeannie's Breakfast Cookies

Healthy cookies packed with nutritious ingredients that make for a great breakfast or anytime snack. Dairy-free, refined sugar-free, and can easily be made gluten-free.
prep time: 20 Mcook time: 10 Mtotal time: 30 M

ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup / 112g olive oil or coconut oil
  • generous 1/3 cup / 120g maple syrup or honey
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup / 120g all-purpose or whole wheat flour
  • 1 1/2 cups / 135g rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup / 90g flaxmeal
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/8 tsp cinnamon
  • 3/4 cup / 105g nuts, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 apple, diced
  • 1/4 cup / 50g dried fruit, chopped if necessary

instructions:

How to cook Jeannie's Breakfast Cookies

  1. Oven 375°F / 190°C. Baking sheet lined with silpat or parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl combine wet ingredients: oil, maple syrup, eggs, and vanilla; beat with a spoon until smooth.
  3. In another medium bowl whisk together dry ingredients: flour, oats, flaxmeal, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.
  4. Add dry ingredients, nuts, apple, and dried fruit to wet ingredients, mix until well combined.
  5. Spoon generous tablespoons of dough onto prepared baking sheet and flatten slightly as they won’t spread much, leaving at least 1 inch between cookies. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until edges turn lightly golden brown and centers are no longer doughy.

NOTES:

you can make flaxmeal at home by simply processing some flaxseeds in a coffee or spice grinder. olive oil has a rather strong taste so if you prefer to avoid that, try going with the coconut oil option or even a neutral oil like peanut oil. 3 egg whites can be substituted for the 2 eggs for cholesterol-conscience people.

Calories

265.40

Fat (grams)

15.87

Sat. Fat (grams)

2.49

Carbs (grams)

27.23

Fiber (grams)

3.34

Net carbs

23.89

Sugar (grams)

9.53

Protein (grams)

5.72

Sodium (milligrams)

188.36

Cholesterol (grams)

31.00
Nutritional information is approximate and based on 12 servings.
Created using The Recipes Generator
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The Fluffiest Key Lime Pie with a Gingersnap Crust

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This post contains affiliate links. If you buy something using these links, Jennyblogs may receive a small commission, at no extra cost to you. This helps to support Jennyblogs. For further information see the privacy policy. Grazie!

Fluffy? Isn’t key lime pie supposed to be creamy, custardy, silken? Yes! And this recipe is all of those things but with a special touch of fluffiness, thanks to our friends the egg whites. Whipped egg whites. It’s magical. And with Easter just around the corner, this is the perfect dessert to celebrate with! I even gave you two weeks time to plan ahead, aren't I nice?

I don’t know why I always want to make citrus desserts for Easter, maybe because it’s always in the spring. And in the spring everything is coming alive, the rebirth of nature, and calls for bright, happy citrus flavors. You can’t call citrus sad. And what is Easter but the celebration of the resurrection of Jesus, giving those who believe on Him new life? The celebration of rebirth. It all fits. Not to mention if you observe Lent, getting to eat what you gave up for 6 weeks is lovely.

And whether you have a big Easter meal planned or not, you’re going to want to make this pie. And if you’ve never made key lime pie before? This is not a bad place to start. Just be warned that other key lime pies after this one might be…tame.

Recipe adapted from the Williams-Sonoma cookbook Savoring America


The Fluffiest Key Lime Pie with a Gingersnap Crust

Serves 8-12

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Ingredients:

For the Gingersnap Crust

  • 28 gingersnaps broken into pieces, about 1 1/2in / 4cm in diameter (homemade or storebought)

  • 1/2 cup / 60g chopped pecans

  • 1 Tbsp / 15g chopped crystallized ginger

  • 1/8 tsp ground cinnamon

  • 1/4 cup / 57g butter, melted and cooled

For the Filling

  • 4 eggs, separated

  • 1/4 cup / 30g cornstarch

  • 1/2 cup / 100g sugar

  • 1 14oz can / 440g sweetened condensed milk, make it homemade here

  • 1/2 cup / 118g key lime juice

  • 2 Tbsp / 12g freshly grated key lime zest

  • 1/2 tsp cream of tartar

  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

For the Topping and Garnish

  • 1 cup / 237g heavy whipping cream

  • 1/3 cup / 42g confectioner’s sugar

  • 1/8 tsp almond extract

  • thin key lime slices or lime zest, optional

Directions:

Oven 350F / 177C. Lightly greased 9in / 23cm pie dish.

Make the Gingersnap Crust

  1. In a food processor, combine the gingersnaps, pecans, ginger, and cinnamon. Pulse until everything is finely ground in crumbs. Add the butter and pulse briefly until the crumbs are evenly moistened.

  2. Press evenly into the bottom and up the sides of the prepared pie dish. Bake in the preheated oven for 10 minutes or until fragrant and lightly browned. (This can be hard to see because of the dark color of the gingersnaps.) Allow to cool.

Make the Filling

  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat 2 egg whites and the cream of tartar on high speed until soft peaks form and can hold their shape, about 1-2 minutes. Beat in the vanilla and scrape the egg whites into a small bowl; set aside.

  2. In the bowl of the stand mixer (don’t worry about cleaning it), beat on medium-high speed the egg yolks, 2 remaining egg whites, cornstarch, sugar, and sweetened condensed milk until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Add the lime juice and zest and beat until smooth.

  3. Gently fold 1/3 of the egg white mixture into the lime mixture to lighten. Add the rest of the egg whites and fold just until combined.

  4. Pour the filling into the cooled pie crust, smooth the top with a spatula. Bake until just firm, about 20 minutes. To test for firmness, jiggle the dish slightly. When the center jiggles just slightly, it’s ready.

  5. Cool completely, then cover and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight.

Make the Topping

  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the heavy whipping cream on medium speed. As it starts to thicken (and will no longer splatter) increase the speed to high. Add the powdered sugar and almond extract. Continue beating until firm peaks form, about 2-4 minutes total.

  2. Spoon whipped cream over pie or use a piping bag and tips to decorate. Garnish with lime slices/and or zest. Serve immediately or refrigerate.

Jenny’s Notes:

  • The crust can be made without the pecans and/or ginger, if you’re like me and sometimes feel too lazy to chop things!

  • Freshly squeezed key lime juice is best, but if you’ve ever used real key limes you’ll know that getting half a cup can be a real labor of love. Those things can be tiny! Hand cramp hand cramp hand cramp. And just when you think you’re there, you realize you’ve only squeezed 1 Tbsp worth. So, I gladly buy bottled key lime juice.

  • If you can’t find fresh key limes or juice, use limes! And I suppose, lemons if you’re in a pinch. Lemon pies are good too! Same goes for the zest.

  • No food processor handy? Do it the old fashioned way and stick the cookies in a resealable plastic bag and whack and roll with a rolling pin. The pecans and ginger can be finely chopped by hand.

American
Yield: 8-12 servings
Author:

The Fluffiest Key Lime Pie with a Gingersnap Crust

Classic key lime pie with a twist. Tart filling made extra light and fluffy by whipping the egg whites, a spicy gingersnap crust, and fresh whipped cream.
prep time: 50 Mcook time: 30 Mtotal time: 80 M

ingredients:

For the Gingersnap Crust
  • 28 gingersnaps broken into pieces, about 1 1/2in / 4cm in diameter (homemade or storebought)
  • 1/2 cup / 60g chopped pecans
  • 1 Tbsp / 15g chopped crystallized ginger
  • 1/8 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup / 57g butter, melted and cooled
For the Filling
  • 4 eggs, separated
  • 1/4 cup / 30g cornstarch
  • 1/2 cup / 100g sugar
  • 1 14oz can / 440g sweetened condensed milk, make it homemade here
  • 1/2 cup / 118g key lime juice
  • 2 Tbsp / 12g freshly grated key lime zest
  • 1/2 tsp cream of tartar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
For the Topping and Garnish
  • 1 cup / 237g heavy whipping cream
  • 1/3 cup / 42g confectioner’s sugar
  • 1/8 tsp almond extract
  • thin key lime slices or lime zest, optional

instructions:

How to cook The Fluffiest Key Lime Pie with a Gingersnap Crust

Make the Gingersnap Crust
  1. Oven 350F / 177C. Lightly greased 9in / 23cm pie dish.
  2. In a food processor, combine the gingersnaps, pecans, ginger, and cinnamon. Pulse until everything is finely ground in crumbs. Add the butter and pulse briefly until the crumbs are evenly moistened.
  3. Press evenly into the bottom and up the sides of the prepared pie dish. Bake in the preheated oven for 10 minutes or until fragrant and lightly browned. (This can be hard to see because of the dark color of the gingersnaps.) Allow to cool.
Make the Filling
  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat 2 egg whites and the cream of tartar on high speed until soft peaks form and can hold their shape, about 1-2 minutes. Beat in the vanilla and scrape the egg whites into a small bowl; set aside.
  2. In the bowl of the stand mixer (don’t worry about cleaning it), beat on medium-high speed the egg yolks, 2 remaining egg whites, cornstarch, sugar, and sweetened condensed milk until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Add the lime juice and zest and beat until smooth.
  3. Gently fold 1/3 of the egg white mixture into the lime mixture to lighten. Add the rest of the egg whites and fold just until combined.
  4. Pour the filling into the cooled pie crust, smooth the top with a spatula. Bake until just firm, about 20 minutes. To test for firmness, jiggle the dish slightly. When the center jiggles just slightly, it’s ready.
  5. Cool completely, then cover and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight.
Make the Topping
  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the heavy whipping cream on medium speed. As it starts to thicken (and will no longer splatter) increase the speed to high. Add the powdered sugar and almond extract. Continue beating until firm peaks form, about 2-4 minutes total.
  2. Spoon whipped cream over pie or use a piping bag and tips to decorate. Garnish with lime slices/and or zest. Serve immediately or refrigerate.

NOTES:

The crust can be made without the pecans and/or ginger, if you’re like me and sometimes feel too lazy to chop things! Freshly squeezed key lime juice is best, but if you’ve ever used real key limes you’ll know that getting half a cup can be a real labor of love. Those things can be tiny! Hand cramp hand cramp hand cramp. And just when you think you’re there, you realize you’ve only squeezed 1 Tbsp worth. So, I gladly buy bottled key lime juice. If you can’t find fresh key limes or juice, use limes! And I suppose, lemons if you’re in a pinch. Lemon pies are good too! Same goes for the zest. No food processor handy? Do it the old fashioned way and stick the cookies in a resealable plastic bag and whack and roll with a rolling pin. The pecans and ginger can be finely chopped by hand.

Calories

590.80

Fat (grams)

29.69

Sat. Fat (grams)

14.77

Carbs (grams)

76.33

Fiber (grams)

1.88

Net carbs

74.45

Sugar (grams)

55.81

Protein (grams)

8.28

Sodium (milligrams)

256.68

Cholesterol (grams)

90.75
Nutritional information is approximate. Based on 8 servings.
Created using The Recipes Generator
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Pumpkin Pudding

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This post contains affiliate links. If you buy something using these links, Jennyblogs may receive a small commission, at no extra cost to you. This helps to support Jennyblogs. For further information see the privacy policy. Grazie!

Fall is coming fall is coming! Or, autumn is coming autumn is coming! Either way, I’m excited. I love the changing of seasons and the different nostalgias and expectations that come with each one. Living in Italy, the nostalgia is a little bit stronger. Autumn is still autumn, but the changes are a little less distinct, and the comfort of knowing where to pick out the best pumpkins and buy the best apple cider is not something I have down pat yet. It’s not even that easy, finding the new places to do the things you’ve always done, because some things aren’t done here, or at least not in the magnitude they are in the States. Pumpkins will be few and far between, unless you’re lucky enough to stumble upon some markets that have the mini gourds; apple cider is practically nonexistent; trick-or-treating happens, but most Italians wear scary costumes instead of characters; the leaf change is not the brilliant red, orange, and yellows like in Michigan, but more of a subtle green-to-yellow with the occasional leaves fluttering down. Despite the differences with what I grew up with, there are still oodles of things I love to do to make my home fall-y and to welcome the chilly evenings. Lighting candles, brewing tea, pulling out the fuzzy socks and sweaters (even if I’d be sweating if I actually tried to wear them yet) and baking and eating lots of fall goodies that include pumpkin, cinnamon, and spices, breads, soups, and hearty autumn recipes.

Now that I’m officially feeling ready for fall after dwelling in those thoughts, what are we making? Pumpkin Pudding! It’s like pumpkin pie, but without all the fuss of the crust. This is great to make in the time leading up to Thanksgiving, because you’re not ruining your appetite for pumpkin pie (you can’t call it pie if it doesn’t have a crust, therefore, totally different) while not wasting time NOT eating pumpkin. Oh, and so, so easy.

Recipe from my mama


Pumpkin Pudding

IMG_5023.JPG

Serves: 4-6

Ingredients:

  • 15 oz / 425g pumpkin purée

  • 2/3 cup / 132g sugar

  • 1/2 tsp / 2.5g salt

  • 1 tsp / 5g cinnamon

  • 1/2 tsp / 2.5g ginger

  • 1/4 tsp / 1g cloves

  • 1 cup / 237g milk of choice

Directions:

Oven 375F / 190C. Lightly greased 8x8in / 20x20cm baking pan.

  1. Mix all ingredients in a bowl until smooth.

  2. Pour into prepared pan; bake for 20-25 minutes in preheated oven until edges are bubbling.

Jenny’s Notes:

  • To dress this lovely and simple dessert up you can top it with confectioner’s sugar or crumbled cookies such as shortbread or Nilla Wafers, or serve with ice cream and/or whipped cream.

  • This recipe is gluten free, vegan (if you use a milk substitute like coconut or almond), and probably many of the other diet fads that I can’t quite keep track of. Eat up!

American
Yield: 4-6
Author:

Pumpkin Pudding

Like pumpkin pie but without the hassle of the crust. Gluten-free and can easily be made vegan.
prep time: 10 Mcook time: 25 Mtotal time: 35 M

ingredients:

  • 15 oz / 425g pumpkin purée
  • 2/3 cup / 132g sugar
  • 1/2 tsp / 2.5g salt
  • 1 tsp / 5g cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp / 2.5g ginger
  • 1/4 tsp / 1g cloves
  • 1 cup / 237g milk of choice

instructions:

How to cook Pumpkin Pudding

  1. Oven 375F / 190C. Lightly greased 8x8in / 20x20cm baking pan.
  2. Mix all ingredients in a bowl until smooth.
  3. Pour into prepared pan; bake for 20-25 minutes in preheated oven until edges are bubbling.

NOTES:

To dress this lovely and simple dessert up you can top it with confectioner’s sugar or crumbled cookies such as shortbread or Nilla Wafers, or serve with ice cream and/or whipped cream. This recipe is gluten free, vegan (if you use a milk substitute like coconut or almond), and probably many of the other diet fads that I can’t quite keep track of. Eat up!

Calories

198.32

Fat (grams)

1.49

Sat. Fat (grams)

0.88

Carbs (grams)

45.81

Fiber (grams)

3.85

Net carbs

41.97

Sugar (grams)

36.49

Protein (grams)

3.31

Sodium (milligrams)

279.59

Cholesterol (grams)

4.74
Nutritional information is approximate. Based on 4 servings.
Created using The Recipes Generator
The slowly melting confectioner’s sugar…

The slowly melting confectioner’s sugar…




Cinnamon Raisin Swirl Bread

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This post contains affiliate links. If you buy something using these links, Jennyblogs may receive a small commission, at no extra cost to you. This helps to support Jennyblogs. For further information see the privacy policy. Grazie!

Now that the festivities of Christmas are over, New Year's resolutions have begun, and the Christmas feasts are but a memory, (except for the reminder clinging to our hips), it's time to return to healthy eating.  Or at least, normal eating.  Some may go cold turkey on all foods that aren't celery, carrageenan-free almond milk, or sugar-free almond butter, but I prefer to go to all the warm, comforting foods.  Yes to breads, yes to soups, yes to cookies, yes to stir frys.  I'm all for trying new diets, not because I'm looking for a radical health-overthrow, but because I enjoy the challenge.  (And then the "forbidden" foods taste oh so marvelous after the fact.)  But I've also learned my lesson from Whole30January: This is not the time to try a restricting diet.  January can be long, cold, and sometimes a bit of a letdown after the holidays.  Add in the extra stress of not being able to eat just about anything you might fancy, and January just stretched into an eternity.  I'd rather get into the swing of normal routine and work before depriving my mind of body of certain foods.  Of course, this is just me.  And mostly the me that's still reeling from Whole30.  Find what works for you, without using that as an excuse to not give it your all.

Speaking of that bread earlier, how about a nice piece of Cinnamon Raisin Swirl toast??  

Recipe adapted from The Kitchn


Cinnamon Raisin Swirl Bread

Makes 2 9-inch loaves

IMG_4782.JPG

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup / 150g raisins

  • 1 cup / 237g hot water

  • 1 Tbsp / 10g active dry or instant yeast

  • 1 cup / 237g milk

  • 4 Tbsp / 56g melted butter or oil

  • 2 tsp / 9g salt

  • 5 1/2 - 6 cups / 660 - 720g all-purpose flour

  • 1/2 cup / 100g sugar

  • 1 1/2 Tbsp / 12g cinnamon

  • 1 egg

  • 2 tsp / 9g water

Directions:

Oven 375°F / 190°C.  2 greased loaf pans, approximately 9 x 5in / 23 x 13cm.  

IMG_4778.jpg
  1. Place raisins in a small bowl with the hot water and let plump for at least 10 minutes.  

  2. Drain water from raisins into the bowl of a stand mixer or large bowl.  Set raisins aside.  Sprinkle yeast over the water.  If you're using active dry, let the yeast sit for a few minutes until it starts to foam; if you're using instant, proceed to the next step. 

  3. Add milk, butter, and salt to yeast mixture and stir well.  Add 5 cups / 600g of flour, mixing to incorporate. 

  4. Switch to the dough hook or knead by hand on a lightly floured surface for 8 - 10 minutes, adding more flour as necessary.  At the end, test to see if your dough is ready by performing the window pane test (see notes.)  If not, continue to knead dough until it passes.  

  5. Toss raisins with a bit of flour to absorb any residual water.  Add to your dough, and knead until evenly distributed.  If using a stand mixer, you may find this easier to do by hand.  

  6. Place the dough in a large oiled bowl, cover, and place in a warm place to rise until doubled in size, about 1 hour.  

  7. Meanwhile, combine the sugar with the cinnamon in a small bowl.  

  8. Beat the egg with the 2 tsp water in another small bowl. 

  9. When the dough has risen, punch it down and divide into two equal pieces.  Starting with one half, roll dough into a rectangle about 9in / 23cm wide and at least 18in / 46cm long. 

  10. Brush the dough evenly with some of the egg wash, leaving one narrow end dry; sprinkle with half of the cinnamon sugar mixture.  Starting from the opposite short end, roll dough up and pinch the seam to seal. 

  11. Transfer to the loaf pan, placing seam side down.  Repeat with other half of dough.  

  12. Cover and let rise until doubled in size, about 30-45 minutes.   

  13. Bake in preheated oven for 30-40 minutes or until golden brown and internal temperature reads 185 - 190°F / 85-88°C. 

  14. Let bread cool 10 minutes before removing from pans and allowing to cool completely.

Jenny's Notes:

  • If the dough shrinks back on you as you're rolling it out, let it rest for a few minutes and try again.  

  • If you have leftover egg wash and cinnamon sugar, you can brush the top of the loaves with the egg wash and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar before baking.  

  • I used sourdough starter to make the loaves in the pictures.  I didn't leave enough time for rising, and thus you can see you the crumb is rather tight and dense.  Delicious nonetheless, but know that if you use instant yeast your loaves should be taller! 

  • Loaves can be frozen for later enjoyment.

  • If you really dig raisins, add more than 1 cup! Just be aware, though, if you start to add too many (I would imagine more than 2 cups) then they could start to weigh down your dough, not allowing for a full rise.  

Yield: 24
Author:

Cinnamon Raisin Swirl Bread

Enriched white bread with swirls of cinnamon and plump raisins throughout.
prep time: 1 hourcook time: 40 Mtotal time: 1 H & 40 M

ingredients:

  • 1 cup / 150g raisins
  • 1 cup / 237g hot water
  • 1 Tbsp / 10g active dry or instant yeast
  • 1 cup / 237g milk
  • 4 Tbsp / 56g melted butter or oil
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 5 1/2 - 6 cups / 660 - 720g all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup / 100g sugar
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp / 12g cinnamon
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tsp water

instructions:

How to cook Cinnamon Raisin Swirl Bread

  1. Oven 375F / 190C. 2 greased loaf pans, approximately 9 x 5in / 23 x 13cm.
  2. Place the raisins in a small bowl with the hot water and let plump for at least 10 minutes.
  3. Drain the water from the raisins into the bowl of a stand mixer or large bowl. Set the raisins aside. Sprinkle the yeast over the water. If you're using active dry, let the yeast sit for a few minutes until it starts to foam, if you're using instant, go ahead and proceed to the next step.
  4. Add the milk, butter, and salt to the yeast mixture and stir well. Add 5 cups / 600g of flour, mixing to incorporate. Switch to the dough hook or knead by hand on a lightly floured surface for 8 - 10 minutes, adding more flour as necessary. At the end, test to see if your dough is ready by performing the window pane test (see notes.) If not, continue to knead the dough until it passes.
  5. Toss the raisins with a bit of flour to absorb any residual water. Add to your dough, and knead until evenly distributed. If using a stand mixer, you may find this easier to do by hand.
  6. Place the dough in a large oiled bowl, cover, and place in a warm place to rise until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
  7. Meanwhile, combine the sugar with the cinnamon in a small bowl.
  8. Beat the egg with 2 tsp water in another small bowl.
  9. When the dough has risen, punch it down and divide into two equal pieces. Starting with one half, roll dough into a rectangle about 9in / 23cm wide and at least 18in / 46cm long.
  10. Brush the dough evenly with some of the egg wash, leaving one short end free, and sprinkle with half of the cinnamon sugar mixture. Starting from the opposite short end, roll the dough up and pinch the seam to seal.
  11. Transfer to the loaf pan, placing seam side down. Repeat with other half of dough.
  12. Cover and let rise until doubled in size, about 30-45 minutes.
  13. Bake in preheated oven for 30-40 minutes or until golden brown and internal temperature reads 185 - 190F / 85-88C.
  14. Let bread cool 10 minutes in pans before removing and allowing to cool completely.

NOTES:

If the dough shrinks back on you as you're rolling it out, let it rest for a few minutes and try again. If you have leftover egg wash and cinnamon sugar, you can brush the top of the loaves with the egg wash and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar before baking. Loaves can be frozen for later enjoyment! If you really dig raisins, add more than 1 cup! Just be aware, though, if you start to add too many (I would imagine more than 2 cups) then they could start to weigh down your dough, not allowing for a full rise.

Calories

171.35

Fat (grams)

2.64

Sat. Fat (grams)

1.44

Carbs (grams)

33.09

Fiber (grams)

1.42

Net carbs

31.67

Sugar (grams)

7.96

Protein (grams)

4.10

Sodium (milligrams)

218.89

Cholesterol (grams)

13.56
Nutritional information is approximate. Based on 24 servings or 12 servings per loaf.
Created using The Recipes Generator
IMG_4777.jpg

Chia Persimmon Pudding (Vegan)

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I had never eaten a persimmon before living in Italy.  I probably couldn't have even picked it out from a line up of fruit.  But if you asked me, of course I would want to try a persimmon!  I had heard good things about them, especially the elusive "persimmon pudding."  

I used to go the market several times a week for my fruit and vegetables, one of my favorite weekly errands.  It was a large market, the ground floor of the Mercato Centrale if you’ve been there, with lots of vendors, but there was this dear old man that always had the best tomatoes and lettuce.  He would say "Ciao, bella," shake my hand, and always round the price down for me.  He also had this habit of sneaking in a fruit or vegetable that I hadn't ordered.  Whether that was a sweet gesture or a marketing strategy, I may never know.  One day, after getting my usual tomatoes, I arrived home to find this strange object that looked curiously like an orange tomato, but was most definitely not.  So....squishy and lacking that earthy, pungent, tomato vine smell.  After a little research, I found I had in my possession a kaki!  Okay, now what is a kaki?  

After a little more research, I found that kaki is what the Italians call persimmons. Sweet, mysterious persimmons.  Now...how to eat it?  I quickly realized they are like jelly on the inside when ripe, and it's only the skin that holds it together.  If that skin breaks, you have a real mess if you weren't prepared with a bowl or your mouth beneath it.  I ate that first one in hurry, before it all dripped from my hands onto the floor. 

From then on I bought them in packs and beautiful things happened, including various versions of persimmon pudding.  Below is a raw and vegan version of the Persimmon Pudding.  Makes for a great dessert, snack, or breakfast!  Kaki on.  

Recipe adapted from Blissful Basil.


*Note: Make the Chia Pudding the day before you want to eat the pudding, as it takes at least 8 hours to set up.  

Chia Persimmon Pudding

Serves 4

Ingredients:

For the Chia Pudding Layer

  • 2 cups / 474g unsweetened coconut milk or milk of choice

  • generous 1/2 cup / 90g chia seeds

  • 3 Tbsp / 60g maple syrup or honey

  • 2 tsp / 9g vanilla extract

  • 1/2 tsp / 1g cinnamon

  • pinch of cardamom

For the Persimmon Pudding Layer

  • 3 ripe persimmons

  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon

Directions:

You’ll need 4 small (about 12 oz), clear glasses or bowls.

Make the Chia Pudding

  1. In a medium bowl whisk together milk, chia seeds, maple syrup, vanilla, cinnamon, and cardamom.  

  2. Cover and refrigerate overnight or at least 8 hours.  

Make the Persimmon Pudding

  1. Remove the stems from the persimmons and place in a food processor or blender.  Add the cinnamon and blend until smooth.  

  2. Spoon about scant 1/4 cup Persimmon Pudding into the bottom of each glass.  Top with a scant 1/4 cup Chia Pudding.  Repeat layers until both puddings are gone.  Should make three layers of each, or 6 layers total in each glass. Top with additional cinnamon, if desired.

Jenny's Notes:

  • You'll want your persimmons to be very ripe and very soft all the way through; they should be bursting when you try to remove the stems.

  • Persimmons are a great source of vitamin A, vitamin C, and high in fiber.  

vegan, raw, no bake, chia pudding, persimmon pudding, dairy free, gluten free, refined sugar free
American
Yield: 4
Author:

Chia Persimmon Pudding (Vegan)

Layers of spiced coconut milk chia pudding and juicy persimmons are a simple, vegan, dairy-free, gluten, raw, etc. dessert, breakfast, or snack.
prep time: 15 Mcook time: total time: 15 M

ingredients:

For the Chia Pudding Layer
  • 2 cups / 474g unsweetened coconut milk or milk of choice
  • generous 1/2 cup / 90g chia seeds
  • 3 Tbsp / 60g maple syrup or honey
  • 2 tsp / 9g vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp / 1g cinnamon
  • pinch of cardamom
For the Persimmon Pudding Layer
  • 3 ripe persimmons
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon

instructions:

How to cook Chia Persimmon Pudding (Vegan)

Make the Chia Pudding
  1. *Note: Make the Chia Pudding the day before you want to eat the pudding, as it takes at least 8 hours to set up. 
  2. In a medium bowl whisk together milk, chia seeds, maple syrup, vanilla, cinnamon, and cardamom.
  3. Cover and refrigerate overnight or at least 8 hours.
Make the Persimmon Pudding
  1. You’ll need 4 small (about 12 oz), clear glasses or bowls.
  2. Remove the stems from the persimmons and place in a food processor or blender. Add the cinnamon and blend until smooth.
  3. Spoon about scant 1/4 cup Persimmon Pudding into the bottom of each glass. Top with a scant 1/4 cup Chia Pudding. Repeat layers until both puddings are gone. Should make three layers of each, or 6 layers total in each glass. Top with additional cinnamon, if desired.

NOTES:

You'll want your persimmons to be very ripe and very soft all the way through; they should be bursting when you try to remove the stems.

Calories

266.73

Fat (grams)

9.61

Sat. Fat (grams)

2.90

Carbs (grams)

43.72

Fiber (grams)

12.46

Net carbs

35.76

Sugar (grams)

25.11

Protein (grams)

4.73

Sodium (milligrams)

12.43

Cholesterol (grams)

0.00
Nutritional information is approximate.
Created using The Recipes Generator

Enjoy your Kaki Pudding!

Pumpkin Cinnamon Swirl Bread

Pumpkin Bread. No, not that wonderful, dense, quick-bread pumpkin bread, but a light, yeasted bread made with PUMPKIN and spiced with nutmeg and ginger!!! And a beautiful cinnamon swirl. It makes a-may-zing toast. I think I say that about all my bread recipes. But it’s the truth. And I love toast.

Do you want to know something really sad, though? (You’re maybe thinking, uh no, scrolllll.) I’m blogging about this bread, and I can’t even eat it. (By choice, I guess I like to punish my body??) I’m going to tell you about it.

Ever heard of Whole30?  Me neither, up until last year.  Actually, New Year's Eve.  (Yes, only 2 weeks ago.  I know, I know, those "last year" jokes are so old, but I still get SO much entertainment out of them.  Too much.)  Anyway, I read about the Whole30 in an email from this informative and entertaining fitness site called Greatist.   Like all normal people, my first thought when I see things like ice cream and strange diets is to say, "I WANT TO BE A PART OF THAT."  Actually, I prefer the ice cream to be a part of me, meaning I ate it. 

I am not normally a spontaneous person by any means, but two days later I had commenced my very own #Whole30January.  Without even reading all the way through the guidelines.  It's almost easier to list what you can eat than what you can't.  But I'll start with what you can't, just because it's fun and I like to complain about it.  It's not even all that hard.  Especially with a buddy.  Just ask my Mom, she just loves doing this with me.

Not allowed:

  1. grain (not even quinoa)

  2. dairy (guess that ice cream is not going to become a part of me after all)

  3. sugar (say no to stevia)

  4. soy (watch out for sneaky ingredients like soy lecithin)

  5. alcohol (put down the vanilla extract)

  6. legumes (think beans and peanuts)

  7. sketchy preservatives like carageenan

That leaves you with veggies, fruits, eggs, nuts, meat, and all the sadness you want.  But you may not take any of those approved items and combine them to create something in the "cheat" category.  For example, you cannot combine eggs and bananas and pour it onto a griddle because that would be a pancake.  The goal is to break you of unhealthy relationships with food.  So instead of replacing everything you normally eat with healthier versions (because at the end of the 30 days you will most likely go back to the exact same way you ate before, and then nothing has changed) the goal is to explore and create new delicious and nutritious (and sad) food.  Ha ok I'm done being sardonic.  If you want to read more about Whole30, click here.  

So in the midst of these January blues and food sadness, I will share with you this recipe for pumpkin cinnamon swirl bread so you can eat it in my stead.  While you're at it, would you also eat some cheese and every other kind of bread that exists for me?  Thanks. 

This post may contain affiliate links. If you buy something using these links, Jennyblogs may receive a small commission, at no extra cost to you. This helps to support Jennyblogs. For further information see the privacy policy. Grazie!

Recipe adapted from Cooking Classy


Pumpkin Cinnamon Swirl Bread

Makes 1 loaf

Ingredients:

For the Bread

  • 2 1/4 tsp / 7g active dry yeast

  • 1/4 cup / 60g warm water, 110°F / 43°F

  • 1/4 cup / 50g + 1/2 tsp sugar

  • 1/4 cup / 60g warm milk, 110°F / 43°C

  • 2 Tbsp / 42g molasses

  • 3/4 tsp salt

  • 1 Tbsp / 14g oil

  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg

  • 1/4 tsp ginger

  • 1 egg

  • 1 cup / 246g pumpkin puree

  • 3 1/2 - 4 cups / 420g - 480g all-purpose flour

For the Cinnamon Swirl

  • 1 1/2 Tbsp / 21g butter, melted

  • 1/3 cup / 67g brown sugar

  • 2 tsp cinnamon

Directions:

Make the Bread

Oven 375°F / 190°C.  1 greased bread pan, approximately 9x5in / 23x13cm.

  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer combine yeast, water, and 1/2 tsp of sugar.  Allow to sit until yeast starts to bubble, about 5 minutes.

  2. Stir in the milk, molasses, remaining sugar, salt, oil, nutmeg, ginger, egg, and pumpkin until combined. 

  3. Switch to a dough hook and slowly add flour.  Continue adding flour until a soft, but not too sticky dough is achieved. 

  4. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 1-2 minutes. 

  5. Place in an oiled bowl, flip so that both sides are oiled, and cover with a towel. Allow to rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1 hour. 

  6. While the bread is rising, whisk together brown sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl.  Set aside.

  7. When the bread is doubled in size, punch down and turn out onto a lightly floured surface.  Roll out into a rectangle, about 22x8in / 56x20cm. 

  8. Spread melted butter over dough, going within 1/2in / 1cm of edge.  Sprinkle cinnamon sugar mixture evenly over butter.

  9. Starting from one of the short sides (the approximate 8in / 20cm) roll dough into a loaf.  Place in prepared loaf pan seam side down. 

  10. Cover with a towel and let rise again until doubled in size, about 45 minutes. 

  11. Bake in preheated oven for 35-40 minutes, or until bread sounds hollow to the tap and an internal temperature reaches about 190°F / 88°C. 

Jenny's Notes:

  • If using instant yeast instead of instant active dry yeast, you can skip step 1. and add all the ingredients from step 1. and 2. together, then proceed to step 3. The reason for this is because active dry yeast is dried and needs to be reactivated in some warm liquid and a bit of sugar before adding to the rest of the ingredients. Instant yeast is ready to be added in without any extra prep.

  • This bread is delicious toasted!  And if you're really a pumpkin fan, might I mention pumpkin butter?

yeasted bread, yeast, pumpkin puree, canned pumpkin, pumpkin bread, cinnamon swirl
bread, breakfast
American
Yield: 12-14
Author:

Pumpkin Cinnamon Swirl Bread

Light, yeasted pumpkin bread spiced with ginger and nutmeg with a beautiful cinnamon swirl.
prep time: 50 Mcook time: 40 Mtotal time: 90 M

ingredients:

For the Bread
  • 2 1/4 tsp / 7g active dry yeast
  • 1/4 cup / 60g warm water, 110°F / 43°F
  • 1/4 cup / 50g + 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 1/4 cup / 60g warm milk, 110°F / 43°C
  • 2 Tbsp / 42g molasses
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1 Tbsp / 14g oil
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp ginger
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup / 246g pumpkin puree
  • 3 1/2 - 4 cups / 420g - 480g all-purpose flour
For the Cinnamon Swirl
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp / 21g butter, melted
  • 1/3 cup / 67g brown sugar
  • 2 tsp cinnamon

instructions:

How to cook Pumpkin Cinnamon Swirl Bread

Make the Bread
  1. Oven 375°F / 190°C. 1 greased bread pan, approximately 9x5in / 23x13cm.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer combine yeast, water, and 1/2 tsp of sugar. Allow to sit until yeast starts to bubble, about 5 minutes.
  3. Stir in the milk, molasses, remaining sugar, salt, oil, nutmeg, ginger, egg, and pumpkin until combined.
  4. Switch to a dough hook and slowly add flour. Continue adding flour until a soft, but not too sticky dough is achieved.
  5. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 1-2 minutes.
  6. Place in an oiled bowl, flip so that both sides are oiled, and cover with a towel. Allow to rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
  7. While the bread is rising, whisk together brown sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl. Set aside.
  8. When the bread is doubled in size, punch down and turn out onto a lightly floured surface. Roll out into a rectangle, about 22x8in / 56x20cm.
  9. Spread melted butter over dough, going within 1/2in / 1cm of edge. Sprinkle cinnamon sugar mixture evenly over butter.
  10. Starting from one of the short sides (the approximate 8in / 20cm) roll dough into a loaf. Place in prepared loaf pan seam side down.
  11. Cover with a towel and let rise again until doubled in size, about 45 minutes.
  12. Bake in preheated oven for 35-40 minutes, or until bread sounds hollow to the tap and an internal temperature reaches about 190°F / 88°C.

NOTES:

If using instant yeast instead of instant active dry yeast, you can skip step 1. and add all the ingredients from step 1. and 2. together, then proceed to step 3. The reason for this is because active dry yeast is dried and needs to be reactivated in some warm liquid and a bit of sugar before adding to the rest of the ingredients. Instant yeast is ready to be added in without any extra prep.

Calories

219.22

Fat (grams)

3.60

Sat. Fat (grams)

1.28

Carbs (grams)

41.35

Fiber (grams)

2.07

Net carbs

39.28

Sugar (grams)

9.02

Protein (grams)

5.33

Sodium (milligrams)

170.35

Cholesterol (grams)

19.66
Nutritional information is approximate and based on 12 servings.
Created using The Recipes Generator
What lurks in the darkness...

What lurks in the darkness...


Cinnamon Streusel Coffee Cake

IMG_4443.jpg

Think of a delicately moist coffee cake with a cinnamon swirl and a crunchy, sweet streusel on top. That’s what we’re making today.

If the first thought that comes to your mind when you think of coffee cake is dry-crumbly-use-up-a-week's-worth-of-saliva-in-one-bite-cake, then think again.  No, no, no.  Coffee cake is supposed to be sweet, but not quite as sweet as regular cake, flavorful, and with a beautifully dense crumb.  That's fancy talk for moist.  But for the mental care of some readers who have an avid dislike for that term, I tried to avoid using it.  But I still did to explain myself.  Just can't win. 

Oh, and for some people who may be confused, there is (most often) no coffee involved in the batter.  The final product, however, pairs beautifully with a mug of coffee.  Hence the name.  (Speaking of words we don't like...mug?  No thanks.  It's like your mouth was too lazy to talk - "mmmm" - then made a huge effort and ended up with "ug."  Mmmmmmug.) 

On to more delicious sounding, looking, and tasting things!! 

This post may contain affiliate links. If you buy something using these links, Jennyblogs may receive a small commission, at no extra cost to you. This helps to support Jennyblogs. For further information see the privacy policy. Grazie!


Cinnamon Streusel Coffee Cake

Serves 9-12

Ingredients:

For the Cake

  • 1/2 cup / 112g oil

  • 1/2 cup / 100g sugar

  • 1/4 cup / 50g brown sugar

  • 1 1/4 tsp baking powder

  • 3/4 tsp salt

  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

  • 1 egg

  • 1/2 cup / 122g plain yogurt

  • 1/2 cup / 119g milk

  • 2 cups / 240g all-purpose flour

For the Cinnamon Swirl

  • 1/2 cup / 100g brown sugar

  • 2 1/2 tsp cinnamon

  • 1 tsp unsweetened cocoa powder

For the Streusel

  • 1/3 cup / 67g sugar

  • 1/4 cup / 30g all-purpose flour

  • 1/4 cup / 23g rolled oats

  • 1 tsp cinnamon

  • 2 Tbsp / 28g butter, melted

Directions:

Oven 350°F / 177°C.  Greased 8x8in / 20x20cm square baking pan, or 8in / 20cm round cake pan.

Make the Cake

  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat oil, sugars, baking powder, salt, and vanilla until well combined.  Beat in egg. 

  2. In a separate small bowl mix together yogurt and milk. 

  3. Add a third of the flour to the oil mixture, mixing until almost combined.  Add half of the yogurt mixture.  Continue adding flour and yogurt mixture to oil mixture until everything is just combined. 

  4. Pour half of the batter into the prepared pan, spreading all the way to edges; set other half aside. 

Make the Cinnamon Swirl

  1. In a small bowl combine brown sugar, cinnamon, and cocoa powder. 

  2. Sprinkle evenly over batter in pan. 

  3. Pour remaining batter over cinnamon filling and use a spatula to gently spread to edges.

Make the Streusel

  1. In another small bowl, combine sugar, flour, oats, and cinnamon.  Add the melted butter and mix until crumbles form. 

  2. Evenly distribute crumble over batter in pan. 

  3. Bake for 40-45 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. 

Jenny's Notes:

  • Watch that bake time.  Toothpicks are your best friend.  I was testing this recipe using my Italian oven that didn't like to bake things on the bottom, so you may need less time.

  • REALLY like coffee cake?  Double this recipe and put in a 9x13 inch pan or two cake pans.  You can always freeze one pan!

  • Don't have plain yogurt on hand? You can also use sweetened yogurt and reduce sugar by 1/4 cup / 50g, or try Greek yogurt, fresh ricotta, sour cream, or mascarpone.  The dairy options are endless!!!!  I really liked fresh ricotta in this recipe. 

coffee cake, cinnamon swirl, brunch, streusel topping
breakfast, cake, dessert
American
Yield: 9-12 servings
Author:

Cinnamon Streusel Coffee Cake

Delicate, moist coffee cake with a cinnamon swirl and streusel to top it all off.
prep time: 30 Mcook time: 45 Mtotal time: 75 M

ingredients:

For the Cake
  • 1/2 cup / 112g oil
  • 1/2 cup / 100g sugar
  • 1/4 cup / 50g brown sugar
  • 1 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup / 122g plain yogurt
  • 1/2 cup / 119g milk
  • 2 cups / 240g all-purpose flour
For the Cinnamon Swirl
  • 1/2 cup / 100g brown sugar
  • 2 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp unsweetened cocoa powder
For the Streusel
  • 1/3 cup / 67g sugar
  • 1/4 cup / 30g all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup / 23g rolled oats
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 Tbsp / 28g butter, melted

instructions:

How to cook Cinnamon Streusel Coffee Cake

Make the Cake
  1. Oven 350°F / 177°C. Greased 8x8in / 20x20cm square baking pan, or 8in / 20cm round cake pan.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat oil, sugars, baking powder, salt, and vanilla until well combined. Beat in egg.
  3. In a separate small bowl mix together yogurt and milk.
  4. Add a third of the flour to the oil mixture, mixing until almost combined. Add half of the yogurt mixture. Continue adding flour and yogurt mixture to oil mixture until everything is just combined.
  5. Pour half of the batter into the prepared pan, spreading all the way to edges; set other half aside.
Make the Cinnamon Swirl
  1. In a small bowl combine brown sugar, cinnamon, and cocoa powder.
  2. Sprinkle evenly over batter in pan.
  3. Pour remaining batter over cinnamon filling and use a spatula to gently spread to edges.
Make the Streusel
  1. In another small bowl, combine sugar, flour, oats, and cinnamon. Add the melted butter and mix until crumbles form.
  2. Evenly distribute crumble over batter in pan.
  3. Bake for 40-45 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

NOTES:

Watch that bake time. Toothpicks are your best friend. I was testing this recipe using my Italian oven that didn't like to bake things on the bottom, so you may need less time. REALLY like coffee cake? Double this recipe and put in a 9x13 inch pan or two cake pans. You can always freeze one pan! Don't have plain yogurt on hand? You can also use sweetened yogurt and reduce sugar by 1/4 cup / 50g, or try Greek yogurt, fresh ricotta, sour cream, or mascarpone. The dairy options are endless!!!! I really liked fresh ricotta in this recipe.

Calories

402.38

Fat (grams)

16.42

Sat. Fat (grams)

2.95

Carbs (grams)

59.80

Fiber (grams)

1.55

Net carbs

58.24

Sugar (grams)

35.85

Protein (grams)

5.08

Sodium (milligrams)

311.45

Cholesterol (grams)

29.23
Nutritional information is approximate and based on 9 servings.
Created using The Recipes Generator

Chocolate Chip Banana Cake with Peanut Butter Frosting

It's almost Christmas!!!  The most wonderful time of the year, filled with family, friends, delicious food, and cheery music.  Wasn't that a wonderfully cliché sentence?  Yes, but we hope it's true.  I am fortunate enough to say that it is for me.  I love all my family, I love Christmas music (I can't always vouch for it all being "good" music, but it lifts your spirit and you can mindlessly sing along while wearing a Santa hat and elf socks without anyone thinking twice), and we have an abundance of delicious food.  So much food. 

What is one to do when they have been indundated with rich holiday food?  Take a break?  No fun.  Stand by the vegetable tray all night?  Nah, I hear the conversation can get a little heated with those peppers.  Chew gum?  No, you need a compromise.  Something that will satisfy, but not put you over like your great-aunt's cousin-once-removed on your dad's side triple chocolate cake with chocolate buttercream, ganache, whipped cream, sprinkles, drizzled with caramel and bonbons on top.  Something more like a fruit based cake.  Banana.  With chocolate chips, because it is Christmas, and peanut butter because that makes the whole thing.  The bow on top of the present.  The icing on the cake...so very literally. 

Chocolate Chip Banana Cake with Peanut Butter Frosting

Makes 12-16 servings

Ingredients:

For the Cake

  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 3/4 baking soda
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3/4 cup oil
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup plain yogurt or sour cream
  • 4 overripe bananas, mashed
  • 1 cup mini chocolate chips

For the Peanut Butter Frosting

  • 1 cup unsalted butter (2 sticks, 8 oz), room temperature
  • 1 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 - 2 1/2 cups powdered sugar

Directions:

Oven 350 Fahrenheit.  Grease and flour two 8 or 9 inch round cake pans.

Make the Cake

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt.  Set aside.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat together oil and sugars.  Add vanilla and eggs; beat well.

Add 1/3 of the flour mixture to the egg mixture.  Mix in yogurt.  Add another third of flour mixture.  Add bananas.  Add final third of flour mixture.  Fold in chocolate chips.

Pour and divide batter evenly between the two prepared pans. 

Bake for 35-40 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.   Allow to cool for about 10 minutes in the pans before flipping out onto cooling racks to cool completely. 

Make the Frosting

In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat butter and peanut butter together until light and fluffy.  Add vanilla and salt.  Add 2 cups of powdered sugar; add more as needed until frosting is thick enough to spread. 

Assembly

Center one cake layer upside down on a cake stand or plate.  Frost this layer within 1/4 inch of edge of cake. 

Place second layer on top, and frost cake with remaining frosting.  Sprinkle with additional chocolate chips, if desired. 

Jenny's Notes:

I prefer to use organic yogurt instead of sour cream in recipes simply because it's healthier.  I rarely have plain yogurt on hand, so I use vanilla yogurt and reduce the sugar in the recipe by 1/3-1/2 cup, depending on the amount of yogurt called for.  Feel free to use whatever you have on hand! 

Pumpkin Coconut Bars (Vegan)

One week until Thanksgiving!  'Tis the season for baking too much, cooking too much, and eating too much.  But sometimes you don't want to wait until Thanksgiving for a slice of pumpkin pie, yet you don't want to ruin it, or sometimes you just want something of a lighter nature that you can feel good about eating.  The upcoming season of delicious foods and feasting does not mean that you should be eating plain lettuce, carrot sticks, and rutabaga all day to "save up" for the holidays.  In fact, if it's not delicious, then you shouldn't eat it.  I believe food is a good gift and should always be enjoyed, and never suffered through.  If it's not delicious, then something isn't being done right.  Nutritious can be delicious.  But delicious does not always have to be nutritious.  Everything in moderation.  Do you follow me?  Well, never mind.  Now for something that falls into the three most important categories: Delicious, Nutritious, AND Festive. 


Pumpkin Coconut Energy Bars

Makes 8-10 Bars

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup pitted dates

  • 1/2 cup nuts of choice, raw and unsalted

  • 2 Tbsp pumpkin seeds or chia seeds

  • 2 Tbsp unsweetened shredded or flaked coconut

  • 1/4 cup oats

  • 1 tsp cinnamon

  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg

  • 1/4 tsp cloves

  • 1/4 tsp ginger

  • 1/4 cup / 60g pumpkin puree

Directions:

Combine all ingredients in a food processor.  Blend for several minutes, until slightly chunky or completely smooth, as you wish.

Line an 8x8 in baking dish with parchment paper.  Lightly sprinkle with oats or coconut to prevent mixture from sticking too much.

Scoop mixture into dish and carefully spread to the edges.  Use lightly oiled or wet hands to help this process.  Sprinkle with more coconut, pumpkin seeds, or both.

Place in the freezer for a couple hours, then slice into bars.  Store in at room temperature, in the fridge, or in the freezer, depending on how firm you want the bars to be. 

Jenny's Notes:

I used a combination of almonds, pecans, hazelnuts, cashews, and Brazil nuts.  Why use only 1 or 2 varieties of nuts when you can use 5?? Haha


Blackberry Banana Bread with Cinnamon Streusel

Wild blackberries abound in Italy.  Ok, that's a bit general, I have not been everywhere in Italy this summer, but I can safely say that they are abundant in Florence and Cinque Terre.  I'm all for anything free and tasty, so I will always stop and pick a few when they are in reach.  Most evenings I like to go for a "passeggiata," or stroll, usually along the Fiume (river) Arno, and there are lots of vines that grow down towards the river.  A fence conveniently kept me from clambering down and picking any, getting torn up from the pickers, and possibly dying in the pursuit, but it didn't stop a little Nonna one evening from trying her best to reach through the fence and grab a few tasty morsels.  I admired her greatly.  Along the hiking trails of Cinque Terre there was also a plethora, and they were perfectly placed along the trail for me to grab handfuls here and there, energy bursts for the 2 hour (solid uphill ;) ardent trek!  Especially helpful since I had already eaten my packed lunch before we even started hiking...And then there was that one time when Paul, who loves to do triathlon and ride his bike for millions of miles, said he had passed a huge group of blueberry bushes while riding up in the mountains.  So we drove up to the spot, up into the rolling hills of Tuscany, prepared with bags, open mouths, and welcoming stomachs.  Melinda and I headed to the nearest loaded bush, and although my first thought was "those are strange looking blueberries" it didn't occur to me to stop and figure out what they were before picking or eating any.  They had been told to me as blueberries, therefore they must be.  So the first thing I do? Pop one in my mouth.  It was the single most sour bitter thing I have ever had in my mouth.  And I like sour things, I eat lemons plain.  But this had a pit and I was expecting a sweet blueberry.  I swiftly spit it out and we didn't pick or eat anymore.  For awhile after we were convinced it was nightshade, OH NO, and I thought I might die.  Not really, it wasn't.  But don't eat something if you don't know what it is.  JENNY.  I'm looking at you.  

Another evening I took a different route for my passeggiata and passed tons of blackberry bushes.  They lined the road for quite a ways, and so I went back several times with friends to pick a couple bagfuls.  I gained a few battle scars from the prickers, some "ciao bella's" from people passing on the road probably wondering what is that weird girl doing climbing on the road guard half hidden/hanging from thorns in bushes, but most importantly, free berries.  And what do you do when you have too many blackberries to eat?  You bake with them, of course.  Delicious and tender banana bread with little bites of blackberries dispersed throughout topped with a sweet cinnamon streusel.  

Blackberry Banana Bread with Cinnamon Streusel

Ingredients:

For the Blackberry Banana Bread

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 2-3 bananas, mashed
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 1/4 cups blackberries

  For the Cinnamon Streusel

  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 3 Tbsp cold butter

Directions:

Oven 350 Fahrenheit.  Grease one 9x5 in loaf pan.

Make the Blackberry Banana Bread

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, and salt.

In another large bowl, beat together sugar, oil, eggs, banana, and vanilla.  Add dry ingredients and stir until just combined.  Gently fold in blackberries. 

Pour into prepared pan.

Make the Cinnamon Streusel

In a medium bowl whisk together flour, sugar, and cinnamon.  Using a pastry cutter, a fork, or my preferred method, clean hands, add butter and mix until crumbles form. 

Sprinkle evenly over batter and bake for 35-40 minutes, or until toothpick comes out almost clean.  

Allow to cool in pan at least 10 minutes before removing from pan.

Jenny's Notes:

Feel free to substitute any type of berry for the blackberries!  Blueberries and raspberries are also delicious.   

I put the vague measurement of 2-3 bananas because either will yield a delicious bread.  The more banana the more moist it will be, and also a touch heavier.  And let's face it, every banana is going to be a different size.  So even if I gave you an exact measurement like 200g, and that ended up being 2 7/16 of a banana, what are you going to do with the remaining 9/16 of that mushy banana? You see my point that I have already over explained, so just use however many mushy bananas you have on hand, 2-3.

Monkey Muffins

Or monkey puzzle bread muffins.  Or individual pieces of heaven.  Or pull-apart cinnamon sugar muffins.  Nah, that last one is too literal, too Pinterest style.  Monkey Muffins it is.  Honestly, I have no idea why it's called monkey bread in the first place.  There is no banana involved, and as far as I know a monkey didn't invent the recipe.  Maybe people act like monkeys when they eat it?  Also sometimes called bubble bread, African coffee cake, Hungarian coffee cake, sticky bread, pinch-me bread, Pluck-Its, or even monkey brains.  Because that last one sounds SO appetizing.  A quick Google search has brought me to the conclusion that many people are also confused as to why it's called Monkey Bread, but might be so named because the bread resembles monkeys in a barrel (but does it?), monkeys like to pick at things, or it resembles the bark of the monkey puzzle tree.  I guess we shall remain shrouded in mystery, or shrouded in a barrel...of...monkeys. ahem.

On to the recipe!

Monkey Muffins

Makes 12 muffins

Ingredients:

Muffins

  • 2 cups + 2 Tbsp flour
  • 1 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 Tbsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk or sour milk*
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup + 1 Tbsp oil ( 5 Tbsp total)
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 5 Tbsp butter, melted
  • 2/3 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tsp cinnamon

Glaze

  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 Tbsp milk

Directions:

Make the Muffins

Oven 350 Fahrenheit

Lightly grease a muffin pan or line with liners (preferably grease-proof.) 

In a large bowl, whisk together flour, 1 Tbsp sugar, baking powder, and salt.  Add both milks and oil to flour mixture.  Stir with a fork until just combined.  Over mixing = dense muffins. 

Place 1/2 cup sugar in a bowl or container with lid.  Scoop out roughly one tsp of dough (you can use a teaspoon or just eye it), gently roll between your palms to create a small ball and plop in the sugar.  Repeat until you have an even layer of balls in the sugar.  Place on lid and gently shake to coat with sugar, or just shake the bowl until covered.  Place sugar-coated balls in muffin pan, six in each cup.  Repeat scooping, rolling, and coating process with remaining dough.

In a small bowl, whisk together melted butter, brown sugar, and cinnamon.  Divide and pour over each muffin evenly.  Place muffin pan on a baking sheet and bake for 17-19 minutes, or until lightly golden-brown and no longer look doughy. 

Remove from oven and allow to cool at least 15 minutes before removing from pan so they don't fall apart.  Run a knife around the edge of each muffin to loosen.

Make the Glaze

In a small bowl or measuring cup, whisk together powdered sugar and milk.  Using the whisk, a spoon, or spatula, lightly drizzle each muffin with glaze. 

Jenny's Notes:

*If you don't have buttermilk, which I frequently don't, sour milk can be substituted.  For every 1 cup milk add 1 Tbsp lemon juice or apple cider vinegar.  Stir and let sit for a minute before using.  Regular milk, coconut milk, or almond milk all work. 

Adapted from Cooking Classy