Thursday, May 24, 2012

green bread...that's not moldy

after my friend suzie posted that she was making zucchini bread (with secret sneaky healthy ingredients) on facebook awhile back it sounded so good i had to make some. i had been craving my sister tory's acorn squash bread for quite some time so this felt like it might hit the spot.

because shane has been all up in my kool-aid about us all eating organic as much as possible i went and bought all organic ingredients so he would eat it and i wouldn't have to get the look  and the shrug that says, "well, it's your body"....hate that look.
can someone please come up with an organic donut? it'd be helpful for my conscience on saturday mornings.

so, i took the original recipe by paula dean (thanks suzie for posting and thanks paula for knowing good food) and adapted it to make it my own and to try to make it as healthy as possible but still edible.

3 1/4 cups flour ( i used 3 cups of whole wheat flour)
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. nutmeg (daughter hates nutmeg so for whatever reason i decided to use cloves-meh)
3 cups of sugar (i only used 2 cups because i added a mashed banana and remember the whole healthy thing)
1 cup vegetable oil
4 eggs, beaten
1/3 cup water
2 cups grated zucchini
1 tsp. lemon juice
1 cup of chopped walnuts or pecans (i didn't use either)

secret ingredient:
purple puree

3 cups raw baby spinach leaves *don't use frozen (next time i will only use 2 cups)
1 1/2 cups blueberries
1/2 tsp. lemon juice
1-2 tbsp. water (i used 1)

put in food processor to get as smooth as possible. you only need 1 cup of this so if you have extra like i did you can freeze the remainder and use it in a smoothie later.

 oh, the puree looks like all kinds of gag but it tastes really good.

preheat oven to 350 degrees f. in large bowl combine dry ingredients.
mix all wet ingredients together- including puree (this is where i added a mashed banana) then slowly add dry ingredients.
fold in nuts. 

i baked 4 mini loaves for about 25 minutes each and 1 large loaf for about 35 minutes. this baked much faster than the original recipe stated-maybe it's my over acheiving oven??
my son thought it would be good on st. paddy's day-yep, it's definitely green.

very good. kids wouldn't eat it coz it was green and brown. might as well feed them spinach by itself coz they will happily eat that. (throws hands up in the air)
shane and i loved it. it tasted like a morning type muffin but better.
my neighbors got 2 loaves coz it sure made lots.

Saturday, May 5, 2012

cinco de mayo pinata cookies


these are fun but beware-you gotta be committed coz this is lots and lots of work. i tried to keep it all real up in my kitchen but honestly mustaches are itchy and the sombrero kept slipping and covering my eyes. its really tough being all authentic and stuff.....
this is a basic sugar cookie recipe until all heck breaks loose....

1 cup sugar
1 cup powdered sugar
1 cup butter
1 cup vegetable oil (i know-this is alot of oil, this freaked me out too. i'd use less.)
2 eggs
1 tsp. cream of tartar
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. almond extract
1 tsp. baking soda
5 cups flour
1 tbsp. vanilla
mini m&m candies

1/2 cup powdered sugar
2 tsp. milk
cream sugars and butter. beat in eggs. add oil.
add your dry ingredients.
mix in vanilla and almond extract.
split and color:
split the dough into 5 even balls and 1 smaller ball (this small one will be the black)
add your food colorings. i wished i had some more vibrant colors like for the purple for instance but eh, whatcha gonna do?!
use a container that is about the size (width AND height) of your donkey cookie cutter and line it with plastic food wrap.split all of your colored dough balls in half except for the black. start to layer the colors starting with the black dough on the bottom. alternate the colors so that you end up with two layers of each color by the time you are done.
wait it out:
cover the layered dough and freeze for four hours or overnight. i suggest when you take the container out of the freezer wait a few minutes before slicing or use a very sharp knife because this can get hard to slice evenly or may crumble. cut slices approximately 1/4" thick. place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and bake at 350 for about 10-12 minutes.

cut the donkeys: (doesn't sound right, i am aware of this but, cut the donkeys)

immediately after you bake the cookies you have to take your donkey cutter and working in sets of 3 quickly cut out 2 donkeys in the same direction and one in the opposite direction.  this way when you go to assemble the finished cookie will be pretty on both sides because the baked bottom sides will be hidden.

create the pinatas:
for the middle cookies in each set cut off the ears and the legs and cut out the center where the m&m's will be. if you have a small round or square cutter this works well but you can use a knife too.
try to work quickly because as the cookies cool they will become more likely to crumble. let the cookies cool on the sheet completely once you have them prepared before you remove the excess outer cookie.
take the first pinata cookie and lay it upside down so that the baked side is facing up. outline the center of the pinata body with the "frosting glue". put the middle cookie on top of the frosting glue, fill the pinata then place the opposite side cookie on top with more frosting glue.
let this sit and harden so they wont fall apart. i waited 30 minutes. well, i tried.

this is a lot of work but pretty darn cute-it only makes about 6-8 cookies but thankfully may 5th only comes once a year!

your pinata!!
i do realize this looks a little morbid but its a pinata-how awesome!
*originally found on she DOES know!