quick bread

Bready or Not: Pumpkin Nutella Swirl Muffins

Posted by on Nov 9, 2016 in Blog, Bready or Not, breakfast, chocolate, muffin, pumpkin, quick bread | Comments Off

Some foods are delicious but not particularly photogenic. These Pumpkin Nutella Swirl Muffins, however, have it all going on.

Bready or Not: Pumpkin Nutella Swirl Muffins

Chocolate and pumpkin are a fantastic pairing. Nutella works so well here, creating a shiny chocolatey cap to these bright orange muffins.

Bready or Not: Pumpkin Nutella Swirl Muffins

The texture of these is magnificent: cakey and fresh, with a light pumpkin taste. Plus Nutella. We can’t forget the Nutella.

Bready or Not: Pumpkin Nutella Swirl Muffins

Speaking of which… if your Nutella is older or you’re near the bottom of the jar, it can be lumpy and hard to spread. To fix that, put the Nutella in a microwave-safe dish and give it a zap in the microwave.

Trust me, that lumpy Nutella may still be delicious, but you want it to be soft enough to create a beautiful swirl on these muffins!

Bready or Not: Pumpkin Nutella Swirl Muffins

Modified from The Novice Chef.

Bready or Not: Pumpkin Nutella Swirl Muffins

Bready or Not: Pumpkin Nutella Swirl Muffins

These muffins are cakey with a perfect complement of pumpkin and Nutella. If your Nutella is stiff, give it a zap in the microwave so that it’s soft enough to swirl. The recipe makes 12 muffins.

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup canned pureed pumpkin (not organic)
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1 large egg, room temperature
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 tablespoons milk (almond milk works)
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup Nutella or other hazelnut cocoa spread

Preheat oven at 350-degrees. Line muffin pan with liners and apply nonstick spray.

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

In large bowl, combine the pumpkin puree, white sugar, and brown sugar. Beat in the egg, vegetable oil, milk, and vanilla extract. Slowly mix in the dry mixture until it is just blended.

Add the batter to the muffin pan, filling each about 3/4 full. Top each muffin with about a teaspoon of Nutella and use a butter knife to swirl it into the batter.

Bake muffins for 14-16 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in a center muffin comes out clean.

Serve warm or at room temperature. Store in a sealed container.

OM NOM NOM!

 

Bready or Not: Pumpkin Nutella Swirl Muffins

Save

Read More

Bready or Not: Cardamom Coffee Pound Cake

Posted by on Aug 31, 2016 in Blog, Bready or Not, breakfast, cake, quick bread | 2 comments

Eat your morning coffee in this luscious Cardamom Coffee Pound Cake!

Bready or Not: Cardamom Coffee Pound Cake

Weird fact: I actually considered skipping the glaze on this because I figured it would be a delicious cake on its own. What was I thinking? The glaze makes this cake.

Bready or Not: Cardamom Coffee Pound Cake

My husband’s workplace lives on coffee. He brought this loaf cake and it was consumed almost instantly. Apparently, the loaf was practically divine when paired with a hot cup of coffee.

Bready or Not: Cardamom Coffee Pound Cake

This recipe has coffee going on all over the place, too. Espresso powder is in the cake batter. Brewed coffee is infused in the baked cake, and is also the primary liquid in the glaze. Plus, it uses one of my favorite spices: cardamom. Which happens to be perfect along with coffee.

Bready or Not: Cardamom Coffee Pound Cake

Modified from Relish Magazine.

Bready or Not: Cardamom Coffee Pound Cake

Bready or Not: Cardamom Coffee Pound Cake

Coffee and cardamom embody this loaf cake with spicy magic. This isn’t merely a “coffee cake,” as in a cake to eat with coffee–it has coffee laced into every layer. Start your morning off with a caffeine-sugar wallop! Modified from Relish Magazine.

  • For the cake:
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cardamom
  • 1 cup plain/vanilla low fat yogurt, Greek yogurt, or sour cream
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 3 eggs, room temperature
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 teaspoon espresso powder dissolved in 1 teaspoon water
  • 1/3 cup mild olive oil or vegetable oil
  • For coffee infusion:
  • 1/4 cup brewed coffee
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • For icing:
  • 1 cup powdered sugar, sifted
  • 2 tablespoons brewed coffee
  • pinch of cardamom

Preheat oven to 350-degrees. Cut a piece of parchment paper to act as a sling across the wide part of a 8 1/2 by 4 1/4-inch loaf pan. Grease the pan well, press in the parchment paper inside so it sticks up on either end, and grease the paper as well.

In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder, salt and 1 teaspoon cardamom. Set aside.

In a large bowl, combine yogurt/sour cream, 1 cup sugar, eggs, vanilla extract, hydrated espresso powder, and oil; whisk well.

Gradually stir in flour mixture.

Pour batter into prepared pan and bake 50 to 55 minutes, until it passes the toothpick test in the middle of the loaf. Let it cool in pan for 10 minutes then lift out by the parchment and place on a wire rack over a sheet pan. You can reuse the parchment by placing it beneath the rack to make the next clean up stage easier, too.

While the loaf is still warm, use a chopstick or skewer to poke deep holes all over the top and sides. Use a saucepan to heat up the 1/4 cup brewed coffee and 1/4 cup sugar until the sugar is dissolved. Slowly spoon the coffee mix over the cake, giving the liquid time to soak in; use it all, with the excess dripping into the pan below.

When the loaf cake is completely cool, make the icing. Combine sifted powdered sugar, remaining 2 tablespoons brewed coffee, and pinch of cardamom. Stir until smooth. Add more sugar or a touch of coffee (or milk or water, in a pinch) if needed for consistency. Drizzle glaze over cake.

OM NOM NOM!

 

Bready or Not: Cardamom Coffee Pound Cake

Save

Read More

Bready or Not: Baileys Chocolate Chip Pound Cake

Posted by on Mar 23, 2016 in Blog, Bready or Not, breakfast, cake, chocolate, quick bread | Comments Off

Today we wrap up the Baileys Coffee Creamer theme with an amazing pound cake that’s perfect for breakfast or snack.

Bready or Not: Baileys Chocolate Chip Pound Cake

The original version of the recipe used alcoholic Baileys and also included it in a chocolate glaze. I decided to do without the glaze (I know! Gasp!) but I think it was a good call. The cake is perfectly sweet on its own, and the mini chips add the perfect amount of chocolate taste.

Bready or Not: Baileys Chocolate Chip Pound Cake

The combination of the nonalcoholic coffee creamer and sour cream lend this a tender yet dense crumb. It slices easily because of the mini chips.

Bready or Not: Baileys Chocolate Chip Pound Cake

The most impressive thing about this pound cake was that it was delicious fresh, and it was just as delicious five days later. We kept it shrouded in plastic wrap at room temperature.

Bready or Not: Baileys Chocolate Chip Pound Cake

This is a pound cake you’ll want to pound into your mouth, again and again.

Modified from Lemon Tree Dwelling.

Bready or Not: Baileys Chocolate Chip Pound Cake

Bready or Not: Baileys Chocolate Chip Pound Cake

The addition of some Baileys (non-alcocholic coffee creamer or the hard stuff) does wonders for the soft texture and smooth taste of this delicious pound cake! This loaf is perfect for breakfast or snack.

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 1/4 cup Baileys Irish Coffee Creamer or Irish Cream
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 cup mini chocolate chips

Prepare the loaf pan by coating with nonstick spray, then cutting a sling of parchment paper to fit the width of the pan that can stick up on either side. Apply nonstick spray on that as well.

Preheat oven at 325-degrees.

In a mixing bowl, beat butter until it's creamy. Gradually add the sugar and continue to beat 4 or 5 minutes, or until it's light and fluffy. Stop and scrape the bowl a few times.

While that is beating, in a separate small bowl combine the flour, baking powder, and baking soda. In another bowl, whisk together the Baileys and sour cream. It's okay if it's a bit lumpy.

In the butter-sugar bowl, add the eggs one at a time and mix well in between. Pour in the dry mix and the Baileys mix a bit at a time, going back and forth, until everything is just combined. Stir in the mini chocolate chips. Pour batter into the prepared loaf pan.

Bake for 65-75 minutes or until it passes the toothpick test in the middle of the loaf.

Cool on a rack for 20 minutes then use the paper sling to lift it up to cool completely. Store in layered plastic wrap at room temperature. Keeps well for at least 5 days.

OM NOM NOM!

 

Bready or Not: Baileys Chocolate Chip Pound Cake

Read More

Bready or Not Guest: Megan E. O’Keefe with Baklava

Posted by on Dec 18, 2015 in Blog, Bready or Not, guest recipe, quick bread | 1 comment

I’m happy to welcome author Megan E. O’Keefe! Her debut novel Steal the Sky is out from Angry Robot on January 5th. It features airships and con men and a gorgeous cover. She’s here today to share a delicious-looking recipe for baklava.

Steal the Sky

When I was first considering what to bake for Bready or Not I knew that, due to the time of year, I wanted to do a holiday bake. Something the people of the Scorched Continent would make for a winter celebration. My first thoughts were fruitcake-esque, as dried fruit is pretty much the only way people on the Scorched eat fruit, but that didn’t quite work.

You see, the Scorched Continent, as its name implies, is an arid climate. It’d be okay for growing wheat, if it weren’t for the fact the whole continent suffers a really nasty monsoon season once a year. Great for replenishing aquifers, not so great for growing wheat.

Which isn’t to say they don’t get wheat. They do – they just have to import it from their mother empire. So by the time mid-winter rolls around, wheat is looking pretty scarce. Which means no cake, unless you’re stupidly rich. There are some people on the Scorched who could afford such a luxury, but I wanted to capture a snack that the everyday populace might stand a chance of getting their hands on.

Enter: baklava.

The Scorched is also home to a species of wild, oversized bee which builds massive hives. This means that honey and beeswax are both plentiful, and cheap. Another common foodstuff on the continent is a wide variety of nuts, as they preserve well and are full of protein. And what better way to make use of scarce wheat than to roll it into a very, very thin sheets?

I’d never made baklava before, but I figured hey, if I’m assuming my characters can do it, so can I! Of course my characters can also move magical gas around and take one hell of a beating, but that’s beside the point.

Ingredients:
1 cup caster sugar
1 cup water
1/2 cup honey
1 tsp vanilla

1 package phyllo dough (16oz) defrosted
1 cup butter
1 lbs chopped nuts
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon

Method:
The real secret to baklava is that, to keep it crispy, you either have to combine cold baklava with hot syrup, or cold syrup with hot baklava. Hint: it’s much easier to do it the second way. So, before you even preheat that oven, combine 1 cup caster sugar, 1 cup water, and boil until all the sugar is melted.

Is the sugar melted? Coolio. Throw in 1/2 cup honey and a tsp vanilla. Well, don’t actually throw it, because boiling sugar water splash back is enough to peel skin. Pour it gently. If you’re having trouble getting all of the honey out of your 1/2 cup scoop, and if your scoop is metal, just scoop up some of the hot sugar water and swish it around until the scoop is clean. Don’t do this with plastic. If I have to tell you why, you probably shouldn’t be reading this. Mix until everything is combined, lower your heat and simmer it for 20-25 minutes until it’s begun to slightly thicken, then set aside to cool.

Get yourself a wee tiny saucepan, and chunk about a cup of butter into it, then set it on the very lowest setting to melt.

 [My wee tiny saucepan]

[My wee tiny saucepan]

While you’re simmering and melting, best prepare your nuts. You can use any kind of nuts you’d like for baklava, though the traditional varieties are walnuts, pistachio, and pecans. I used all walnuts. I’m a vegetarian and, because of that, fish are friends, not food, so I have to get those omega-3’s somehow. You can buy your nuts pre-chopped, or you can use chopping them as an excuse to eat some like I do. Either way, mix up 1 pound chopped nuts with 1 1/2 tsps cinnamon and set aside.

[That’s a lotta’ nuts]

[That’s a lotta’ nuts]

 [A finer chop than this is easier to work with, but I never learn.]

[A finer chop than this is easier to work with, but I never learn.]

Have you preheated your oven to 325F yet? Probably not, since I haven’t told you to. Do that now, and while you’re at it get to buttering a 9×13” pan – use some of that butter you’ve got melted.

Now it’s time for the part everyone hates: the phyllo. Depending upon who made your phyllo (and I’m going to guess it wasn’t you, because only a masochist would make that stuff themselves) you’ll either have one large roll or two smaller ones. If you have a large one, unroll it and chop it in half to fit your pan.

Now that you have phyllo that fits your pan, cover it with a layer of saran wrap or wax paper and then cover that with a SLIGHTLY damp paper towel. This helps keep the phyllo from drying out while you work – but do not get water directly on the dough. Then you’ll have mush. You do not want mush.

To create the base of your baklava: layer two sheets of phyllo (pick them up together, it’s easier than going one by one) in the bottom of your pan. Use a pastry brush to coat with melted butter. Add another two layers of dough – then butter – and another two layers – then butter. Repeat until you have a total of eight layers of pastry with butter in between every two layers. Good? Good. That wasn’t too painful, right?

[Magical pastry brush. Adds +2 to butter application]

[Magical pastry brush. Adds +2 to butter application]

Now sprinkle some of your nut mixture on that, about 3 tablespoons. Cover with two more layers of phyllo, then brush with butter. Repeat the phyllo-butter-nuts routine until you have 8 sheets of phyllo left. Use those last 8 sheets to make the top, putting butter between every two layers just like you did to make the base.

[Should look something like this]

[Should look something like this]

Brush the top with more butter, then cut your unbaked baklava into triangles with a very sharp knife while it’s still in the pan. Trust me, it’s way easier than trying to do it once it comes out of the oven.

Pop the baklava in the oven and your honey sauce in the fridge. Bake the baklava about 50 minutes, or until golden brown on top.

[Saucy]

[Saucy]

Remove the baklava from the oven, and immediately spoon the honey sauce over the top. Let it cool, then pop it out of the pan to serve up in cupcake wrappers or something equally sticky proof. This stuff is good, but man is it sticky.

Toast your success, and vow to buy baklava from the store next time.

[Flakey goodness.]

[Flakey goodness.]


Find out more about Megan at her website. Order Steal the Sky at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or any other bookstore.

Read More

Bready or Not Guest: Author Pat Esden with Popovers

Posted by on Nov 13, 2015 in Blog, Bready or Not, guest recipe, quick bread | Comments Off

I’m happy to welcome Pat Esden to Bready or Not! Her novel A Hold On Me comes out in February from Kensington. I have never tried popovers (shocking, I know!) and her recipe for them looks fantastic.

Pat Esden - A hold on me copyMy novel A HOLD ON ME is a new adult paranormal tale of love and revenge. The main character, Annie, grew up dealing antiques and traveling with her father. When he’s diagnosed with dementia, she’s forced to return to her estranged family’s estate in Maine.

One of the few people on the estate she sees as a potential ally is Laura, an employee whose main job is to produce a seemingly endless supply of comfort foods. Laura lived on the estate as a child. She went away in her teens and returned a few years later with a young son in her arms. What happened to her in those years is a mystery. But, now—almost twenty years later–Annie shouldn’t mistake where Laura’s allegiance lies. This cook may be known for her strawberry jam and popovers, but she also knows her way around the darker side of the kitchen’s garden.

 

LAURA’S SKYSCRAPING POPOVERS:

INGREDIENTS
4 eggs
1 cup milk
1 cup white flour
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons melted butterPat Esden - POPOVER

Position oven rack in lower part of oven. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Heavily grease popover pan cups with butter (I use 4 ceramic custard cups for this recipe or a traditional six cup cast iron popover pan) Just BEFORE filling cups with batter, preheat them in oven until sizzling hot.

BATTER
Whisk eggs and milk together
Add flour, salt, and melted butter

Whisk lightly (batter will be lumpy). Let batter sit for 5 minutes, then whisk lightly again. Repeat letting batter sit and whisking lightly until white flour lumps disappear. This process of whisking lightly and letting the flour be absorbed into the batter slowly is the key to extra-tall popovers.

Fill pre-heated popover cups ½ way with batter.
Bake for 45 minutes without opening oven.
Eat right away. Popovers shrink quickly. A hole poked in the top of the popover to vent the steam will slow the shrinking, but not for long.

LAURA’S RECIPE IDEA BOARD ON PINTEREST


 

A HOLD ON ME (Dark Heart Book #1) by Pat Esden

Kensington Books
Release date: February 23

She never wanted to return.
He wants nothing more than for her to leave.
But the fire between them is as strong as the past that haunts them.

Annie Freemont grew up on the road, immersed in the romance of rare things, cultivating an eye for artifacts and a spirit for bargaining. It’s a freewheeling life she loves and plans to continue—until her dad is diagnosed with dementia. His illness forces them to return to Moonhill, their ancestral home on the coast of Maine—and to the family they left behind fifteen years ago, after Annie’s mother died in a suspicious accident.

Once at Moonhill, Annie is shocked when her aunt separates her from her father. The next time Annie sees him, he’s a bizarre, violent shadow of his former self. Confused, she turns to an unlikely ally for support—Chase, the dangerously seductive young groundskeeper. With his dark good looks and powerful presence, Chase has an air of mystery that Annie is irresistibly drawn to. But she also senses that behind his penetrating eyes are secrets she can’t even begin to imagine. Secrets that hold the key to the past, to Annie’s own longings—and to all of their futures. Now, to unlock them, she’ll have to face her greatest fears and embrace her legacy…

Add A HOLD ON ME on Goodreads

PRE-ORDER NOW!

Indiebound

Amazon

B&N

Books-A-Million


 

PAT ESDEN would love to say she spent her childhood in intellectual pursuits. The truth is she was fonder of exploring abandoned houses and old cemeteries. When not out on her own adventures, she can be found in her northern Vermont home writing stories about brave, smart women and the men who capture their hearts. An antique-dealing florist by trade, she’s also a member of Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers of America, Romance Writers of America, and the League of Vermont Writers. Her short stories have appeared in a number of publications, including Orson Scott Card’s Intergalactic Medicine Show, the Mythopoeic Society’s Mythic Circle literary magazine, and George H. Scither’s anthology Cat Tales.

WEBSITE

TWITTER

PINTEREST

TUMBLR

FACEBOOK

BLOG

Read More

Bready or Not: Lemon Loaf Cake

Posted by on Jun 24, 2015 in Blog, Bready or Not, breakfast, cake, lemon, quick bread | Comments Off

Let’s finish up CAKE MONTH with something that’s bright, fresh, and perfect for summer!

lemon loaf cake

I modified this King Arthur Flour lemon cake and made it in two gift-size pans, as one was indeed given as a gift to dear family friends who came for a visit. My husband pretty well inhaled the loaf that we kept.

lemon loaf cake

Like last week’s chocolate cream cheese cake, this is the kind of cake that isn’t heavy duty on sweet. It’s really perfect for breakfast, brunch, or dessert. Eat it by itself or pair a slice with fruit, ice cream, or whatever else sounds good.

lemon loaf cake

I made this using sour cream, though the original recipe suggested yogurt or buttermilk. I bet this would be amazing with lemon yogurt. MORE LEMONY GOODNESS!

lemon loaf cake

Modified from King Arthur Flour’s Lemon Bread.

Bready or Not: Lemon Loaf Cake

lemon loaf cake

This light and fresh lemon loaf cake is perfect for breakfast, brunch or dessert.

  • Cake
  • 6 tablespoons (3 ounces) butter
  • 1 cup (7 ounces) sugar
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup (2 ounces) lemon juice
  • zest of two lemons (optional, but recommended)
  • 3/4 cup (6 ounces) sour cream or yogurt or buttermilk
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon extract (or substitute more lemon juice)
  • 2 cups (8 1/2 ounces) All-Purpose Flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Glaze
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup (3 1/2 ounces) white sugar

For the cake: Preheat the oven at 350-degrees. Cream together the butter and sugar till thoroughly combined, followed by the eggs.

In a small bowl, mix the sour cream, yogurt or buttermilk with the lemon juice, lemon extract, and zest, and set aside.

In a third bowl, prepare the flour, baking powder, and salt.

Slowly add the second and third bowls into the butter mixture until everything is together.

Prepare your pan(s) by applying nonstick spray. Spoon the batter inside. If using a standard bread pan, bake for about 50 minutes; if using two 7x2 paper pans, bake for 30-35 minutes. If using in smaller bread pans, adjust time accordingly. Use the toothpick test to check for doneness.

Remove the cake from the oven, and deeply poke it all over with a chop stick or fork.

For the glaze: Right before the cake is done, whisk together the glaze ingredients and stir until the sugar is dissolved. While the cake is hot, slowly drizzle the glaze over it, stopping often to let it to soak in.

If you're using regular bread pan(s), let the cake cool in the pan another 15 minutes and then remove the loaf to let it cool completely.

Let cake cool completely before slicing. Wrap it with plastic wrap and store in the fridge or at room temperature. Will keep for at least 3 days.

OM NOM NOM!

 

lemon loaf cake

Read More