Zucchini Loaf

For me, the whole thought of vegetables in any kind of baking feels a sense of healthiness.  Although I have heard people talk about the gluten free diets, the wheat free diets and kito diets, I’m not ready for that kind of baking yet.  I understand that it seems to be the “in” thing, but I am not prepared to gear my baking towards that direction, just yet.  I have thought maybe in the future, I might, but until I get warmed up and make sense of what each diet is really about, I think I’m going to stick with what I know and (in my opinion) do best.  Bad baking!  LOL
Zucchini Loaf sliced

This is quite the snack.  I find it, a tad different from my regular baking, as this is kind of chewy.  I’m not too sure if it because I have overmixed it with the flour, but it also doesn’t rise as much as the regular baking that I do either.

3 cups cake flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
2 tsp. cinnamon
1½ cups sugar
3 eggs
1 cup vegetable oil
1 tsp. vanilla
2 cups zucchini, grated/drained
1 cup walnut, coarsely chopped

Preheat oven to 350°F.  Lightly grease a loaf pan with cooking spray, set aside.

In a medium bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon.  Carefully mix in the grated zucchini, making sure that it doesn’t clump together.  Set aside.

In a large bowl, beat together the sugar, eggs, vegetable oil and vanilla.  Fold in the flour mixture and walnuts until just combined DO NOT OVERMIX.

Pour into loaf pan and bake for approximately 1 hour or until cake tester/toothpick comes out clean.

Zucchini Loaf



Pumpkin Spice & Cream Cheese Loaf

Pumpkin Spice Cream Cheese Loaf1

Just in time for American Thanksgiving.  I have never really grown to like Pumpkin, or cream cheese.  So I was actually going out on a limb here, hoping that everything would come together.  I have tested it on a few.  Majority of the people liked it, but I thought it wasn’t overly sweet, however, I think if there is pumpkin puree out there that is sweetened, might make the cake a little bit sweeter.  The pumpkin taste, is an acquired taste, so make sure who your audience is, when you decide to try this out.  The cream cheese put a little bit of a spin on this loaf, which turned out quite pretty, when it came out of the oven.

For the Cheese Layer Ingredients:
1 cup cream cheese, room temperature
1 egg, room temperature
¼ cup powdered sugar
½ tsp. vanilla

For the Pumpkin Spice Loaf Ingredients:
1 cup brown sugar, packed
2 eggs
1 cup pumpkin puree (not pumpkin filling)
2 tbsp. vegetable oil
1 tsp. vanilla
1¼ cups cake flour
1¼ tsp. baking powder
¼ tsp. baking soda
¼ tsp. salt
¾ tsp. cinnamon
½ tsp. nutmeg
¼ tsp. ginger
⅛ tsp. cloves

Preheat oven to 350°F.  Lightly grease a loaf pan with cooking spray, set aside.

For the cheese batter:
Beat together cream cheese, egg, powdered sugar and vanilla, until smooth.  Set aside.

For the pumpkin spice batter:
Whisk together the brown sugar and eggs in a medium bowl until light and fluffy.  Stir in the pumpkin, canola oil, and vanilla.

In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and cloves.

Gradually stir the flour mixture into the egg mixture, DO NOT OVERMIX.

Pour the pumpkin batter into the loaf, then pour the cheese batter on top.  Bake until golden around the edges, about 30 to 35 minutes, or until a toothpick/cake tester inserted inside comes out clean.

Cool 10 minutes in the pans, then remove from the pans and transfer to a wire rack to finish cooling.

Pumpkin Spice Cream Cheese Loaf2

Cinnamon Swirl Loaf

Seems to be that the easy recipes have been the trend on my blog lately.  Not that I don’t want to try things out, but there have been recipes that ask for things that I have to go out of my way to get, so I was just trying recipes, and changing it up with things that I can just make an adjustment with a substitute.

Cinnamon Swirl Loaf

1/3 cup sugar
2 tsp. ground cinnamon
2 cups cake flour
1 tbsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 cup sugar
1 egg
1 cup milk
1/3 cup vegetable oil

Preheat oven to 350ºF.  Lightly grease a 9″x5″ loaf pan.

In a small bowl, mix together 1/3 cup sugar and 2 teaspoon cinnamon.  Set aside.

In a medium bowl, sift together cake flour, baking powder, salt and 1 cup sugar.

In a separate bowl, combine egg, milk and oil.  Stir into the flour mixture until just combined.  DO NOT OVERMIX!!!!

Pour half the batter into the prepared pan.  Sprinkle half the cinnamon mixture on top of the batter.  Pour the rest of the batter on top of the cinnamon mixture and top with the rest of the cinnamon mixture.

Swirl the batter with a knife for a marble effect.

Bake for 45-50 minutes, or until cake tester comes out clean.  Cool in pan for 10 minutes, before removing from pan.  For best tasting, cut into slices the next day.

Lemon Poppy Seed Pound Cake

I really like this recipe.  There are a few more steps than the usual, combine the ingredients and throw it in the oven technique.  It is quite dense, as this IS a pound cake, but I found the syrup pronouncing the lemon flavor even more.  I think, letting the cake sit for day and let the syrup make its way into the middle of the cake would be best.  So I wrapped it in saran wrap and let the syrup saturate itself overnight before I cut it into slices.

Lemon Poppy Seed Pound Cake

3 tbsp. milk
3 large eggs
1 ½ tsp. vanilla
1 ½ cups cake flour
¾ cup sugar
¾ tsp. baking powder
¼ tsp. salt
1 tbsp. loosely packed grated lemon zest
3 tbsp. poppy seeds
13 tbsp. (12 tbsp. is ¾ cup) unsalted butter (must be softened)

¼ cup + 2 tbsp. sugar
¼ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice

Preheat the oven to 350oF.  Grease and flour 2 ½ inch loaf pan (4 cups) or fluted tube pan.

In a medium bowl lightly combine the milk, eggs, and vanilla.

In a large mixing bowl combine the dry ingredients, lemon zest and poppy seeds.  Mix until blended.  Add the butter and half the egg mixture.  Mix on low speed until the dry ingredients are moistened.  Increase to medium speed (high speed if using a hand mixer) and beat for 1 minute to aerate and develop the cake’s structure.

Gradually add the remaining egg mixture in 2 batches, beating well after each addition to incorporate the ingredients and strengthen the structure.

Smooth the batter into the prepared pan with a spatula.  The batter will be almost ½ inch from the top of the 4 cup loaf pan.  Bake 45-55 minutes (35 to 45 minutes in a fluted tube pan) or until a wooden toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean.  Be sure to watch it closely, almost to the end of the baking time, as each oven is different.

Shortly before the cake is done, prepare the lemon syrup.  In a small pan over medium heat, stir the sugar and lemon juice until dissolved.  As soon as the cake comes out of the oven, place the pan on a rack, poke the cake all over with a wire tester, brush it with ½ the syrup.  Cool in the pan for 10 minutes, Loosed the sides with a spatula and invert onto a greased wire rack.  Poke the bottom of the cake with the wire tester, brush it with some syrup, and reinvert onto a greased wire rack.  Brush the sides with the remaining syrup and allow to cool before wrapping airtight.  Store 24 hours before eating to give the syrup a chance to distribute evenly.  The syrup will keep the cake fresh a few days longer than a cake without syrup.

Lemon Poppy Seed Pound Slice

Banana Bread

Banana Bred

Banana Bread is probably one of the most common recipes out there, and everyone seems to think that they have the best banana bread recipe.  I have tried many recipes and this recipe is probably the one that I use the most, as we seem to have ripen bananas on a regular basis.  The most requested and by far the easiest one.  One of the most important things of making banana bread is grossly ripen bananas or frozen bananas.

2 eggs
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup oil
1 cup very ripe bananas
1/2 cup yogurt
1 1/2 cups cake flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt

In a large bowl, beat eggs for 5 minutes.  Add the sugar, oil, bananas and yogurt.

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

Fold flour mixture into egg mixture until just combined.  (Do not use mixer, it may over mix the batter and the cake will become chewy).

Bake at 350oF for approximately 1 hour.  Check with cake tester.

Banana Bread Sliced