Saturday, December 24, 2011

Cranberry Nut Bread

This is my absolute favorite nutbread! Kroger sells a sweetened cranberry relish in the deli section, it is made with whole cranberries, pineapple & walnuts. A few years ago I discovered I could use it instead of the fresh cranberries in my nutbread it was AMAZING! This recipe is for standard cranberry orange nutbread, but I will note the modifications I made in case anybody feels like experimenting.
2 cups flour
3/4 cups sugar (1/4 cup if using sweetened relish)
1 1/2 t baking powder
3/4 t salt
1/2 t baking soda
1/4 cup softened butter
1 T grated orange peel (omit if using sweetened relish)
3/4 cup orange juice (substitute water if using sweetened relish)
1 egg
1 cup fresh or frozen chopped cranberries (or 1 cup sweetened cranberry relish)
1/2 cup walnuts or pecans (omit if using relish that contains nuts)

Preheat the oven to 350. Spray two 8X4 loaf pans with non-stick cooking spray. In a medium bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and baking soda, stir in butter until crumbly. Add orange peel, orange juice and egg. Fold in cranberries and nuts. Fill loaf pans half full. Cook @ 350 for one hour or until wooden tooth pick inserted in center comes out clean. Allow to cool in pans for 10 minutes before moving to a cooling rack. When it is completely cool, wrap nutbread in foil to store. This recipe also works great for mini loaves to give as gifts.

Banana Nut Bread

Banana's are very popular in my house, but just about every time I buy a bunch the last 2 or 3 don't get eaten. They get "too ripe" &  the kids won't touch them. So, into the freezer they go. Frozen bananas work well in any recipe calling for fresh banana. Mini loaves wrapped in foil are also perfect for gift giving. The recipe is a modified version from my Betty Crocker Cookbook. This will make 1 standard size loaf or about 3 mini loaves...foil pans are GREAT for baking mini loaves & can be reused over & over. When I'm making mini loaves for gifts, I double or triple the recipe depending on how many I need &  put all the mini pans on a cookie sheet to make getting them into &  out of the oven easier.
1 cup sugar
1/3 cup softened butter
2 eggs
4 over ripe fresh or frozen bananas (thawed enough to smash easily if using frozen)
1/3 cup water
1 2/3 cups flour
1 t baking soda
1/2 t salt
1/4 t baking powder
1/2 cup nuts

Preheat oven to 350. Cream sugar & butter together in medium mixing bowl. Stir in eggs, then add mashed banana & water. Mix the dry ingredients (except nuts)in a separate bowl then slowly add to wet mix. Fold in nuts. Pour into greased loaf pan & bake until tooth pick inserted in middle comes out clean....approximately 1 hr for standard size loaf. If making mini loaves, fill greased loaf pans 2/3 full. Cooking time will be between 30 & 45 minutes depending on size of mini pan. Let them cool in the pan for about 5 minutes, then on a wire rack until completely cool before cutting or wrapping in foil.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011


Many years ago when my oldest was in 3rd grade (he’s 24 now), his class made a cookbook.  We’ve recently moved and that cookbook is one of the many things that resurfaced during the unpacking process.  My youngest son LOVES snickerdoodles and when he saw this new recipe he couldn’t wait to try it.

3 3/4 cups flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp cream of tartar
1 cup butter
2 cups sugar
2 eggs
1/4 cup milk
1 tsp vanilla

3 Tbs sugar
1 tsp cinnamon

Lightly grease cookie sheet.  In a small bowl, combine flour, salt, baking soda and cream of tartar.  In a larger bowl, beat butter 30 seconds.  Add 2 cups sugar and beat until fluffy.  Add eggs, milk and vanilla.  Beat well.  Add dry ingredients, beat well
Refrigerate dough 30 minutes.  Preheat oven to 375. 

Form dough into 1 inch balls, roll in mixture of sugar and cinnamon.  Place 2 inches apart on cookie sheet and flatten slightly with bottom of a glass.  Bake for 10 to 12 minutes or until light golden brown around the edges. Allow to cool on the cookie sheet for 5 minutes before transferring to cooling rack.