Nutella Swirl Banana Bread

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Nutella Swirl Banana Bread by twocarolines.com

We eat ridiculous amounts of Nutella in our home, and when I say “we” I mean my adorable 7 year old daughter who could sustain herself on nothing else if we let her – she’s the one on the left, she’s a very adorable Nutella addict, but an addict none the less.  IMG_2912.JPGI don’t make loads of Nutella recipes because it’s expensive stuff and I buy enough as it is, but this Nutella Swirl Banana Bread turned my head because, duh – bananas!  And I’ve seen a few versions of it, but I liked the way sweetest menu did the swirl on the top and put chocolate chips throughout.  It was a total dessert bread that was here and gone in a day, everyone loved it!  I’m sure you will too.  -CK 2.0

Ingredients
1 1/4 cup flour
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
2 large overripe bananas
1/3 cup coconut oil
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup plain greek yogurt
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1/2 cup Nutella

  1. Preheat oven to 350.  Grease and line a standard loaf pan with parchment paper.  In a large mixing bowl, add the flour brown sugar, cinnamon, baking powder and baking soda.  Whisk together to combine.
  2. Mash bananas with a fork or I use this Pampered Chef Mix and Masher every day and I love it.  Set bananas aside.  In a separate bowl, add the oil, egg, vanilla, and greek yogurt.  Whisk to combine.  Then, add your wet mixture, along with your mashed banana, into your dry mixture and gently fold to combine.  Add chocolate chips and fold in.
  3. Warm the Nutella in the microwave for 10-15 seconds then add 1/4 of the Nutella into your banana mixture.  Fold gently so you can keep your pretty swirls.  Pour batter into prepared loaf pan.   Add the rest of your Nutella on top and swirl it with a knife into a pretty pattern.
  4. Bake for 30 minutes then tent your bread with foil so it doesn’t burn on top.  Bake another 10-15 minutes until a knife in the center comes out clean (minus a bit of Nutella).  Remove from oven and leave to cool a solid 10 minutes before removing bread from the pan to cool on a rack completely.

Recipe adapted from Sweetest Menu Nutella Swirl Banana Bread

Sour Cream Blueberry Bran Muffins

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Sour Cream Blueberry Bran Muffins

I’m such a bran fan, it’s a texture thing, probably the same thing that makes our blog so full of oats, coconuts, pecans and other such chewy crunchy delights.  These bran muffins are one of my faves, they don’t require blueberries, you could also add raisins, craisins, dates, other fresh berries, even chocolate!  Even if you add nothing, it’s a fantastic little muffin.  They will reliably turn out hearty, fiber full and delicious.  I prefer to eat them with only a pat of butter because the flavor is so amazing, but they are not a super sweet muffin, so some might like to serve with honey or jam.  The cool bran muffin bonus is loads of healthy fiber which has been proven to keep you full longer and has all sorts of those hard to find omega 3’s.  See?! Your friends named Caroline do care about your heart health and how you look in your jeans (at least today we do, tomorrow we will go back to fueling your love handles)   -CK 2.0

1 stick (1/2 cup) butter, softened
1/3 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
2 large eggs, beaten lightly
1 cup sour cream or yogurt
1/4 cup dark molasses
1/2 cup blueberries (or raisins, cranberries, or other diced dried fruit)
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup wheat bran 
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

  1. Preheat oven to 400 and grease a 12 count muffin tin.  I put cupcake liners and spray just a bit into the bottom of them.
  2. In a large bowl with an electric mixer cream together the butter and the brown sugar until the mixture is light and fluffy, beat in the eggs, the sour cream or yogurt, and the molasses, and stir in the fruit.
  3. In a bowl whisk together the flour, the baking soda, the salt, the cinnamon (optional) and the bran, add the mixture to the sour cream mixture, and stir the batter until it is just combined. (The batter will be lumpy.)
  4. Spoon the batter with a 1/3 cup into your prepared muffin tins and bake the muffins in the middle of a preheated 400°F. oven for 15 to 20 minutes, or until they are golden brown and springy to the touch. Turn the muffins out onto a rack and let them cool.

Recipe adapted from Smitten Kitchen Sour Cream Bran Muffins

Banana Pecan Muffins

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Banana Pecan Muffins by twocarolines.com

You guys as I tell you about these epic muffins there is an entirely different banana bread recipe baking in my oven, right this minute!  It’s fair to say we are not balanced in our coverage of awesome banana related recipes, but so far, there have been no complaints, because we only post the very best ones!  These are my Mother and Father in-law’s number one favorite from the genius kitchen of Tyler Florence.  They have SERIOUS banana flavor because of the method of pureeing some of the banana’s and leaving the rest in chunks that combined with the pecans make for an amazing texture.  The recipe is for a banana bread, but muffins are easier for my family so we often go that route.  If you choose to make the bread just bake until doneness about an hour and 10 minutes which makes for beautifully caramelized edges.  You will love them!

2 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 overripe bananas
1 cup sugar
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) butter melted and cooled
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup pecans finely chopped

  1.  Preheat oven to 350 and line or spray a standard muffin pan.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, and salt, set aside.
  3. Mash 2 of the bananas with a fork in a small bowl so they still have a bit of texture.  With an electric mixer fitted with a wire whisk, whip the remaining bananas and sugar together for a good 3 minutes; you want a light and fluffy banana cream.  Add the melted butter, eggs, and vanilla; beat well and scrape down sides of the bowl.  Mix in the dry ingredients just until incorporated; no need to overly blend.  Fold in the nuts and the mashed bananas with a rubber spatula.  Pour the batter into the prepared muffin tin filling 3/4 the way or into your loaf pan.
  4. Bake for about 20-25 minutes for muffins an hour and 10-15 for loaf – until golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean.  Rotate a time or two for even browning.
  5. Cool the muffins in pan for 10 minutes or so, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely before slicing.  If you make the bread, Tyler recommends you toast it and dust with confectioners sugar for a special treat.

Recipe adapted from Banana Bread with Pecans Tyler Florence Food Network

Peanut Butter Banana Bread with Copious Chocolate Chips

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We recently had a big family event + Mother’s Day, so it was so fun to have us all together to celebrate. As always, we need to celebrate with food and I was asked to bring a lil’ something. I had a surplus of bananas, and wanted to make a banana bread, however—I wanted to add the two best ingredients to go with that—peanut butter and chocolate. I know, I know, I’m predictable. But at least deliciously so? I know that I already posted the divine Peanut Butter Banana Chocolate Chip Cake, BUT bread is a whole different machine, right? It’s something you can feel good about eating for breakfast or a snack, and with all the all the peanut butter and banana, because it’s totally good for you, right? RIGHT? Just nod along and make and eat this tasty form of denial.

Peanut Butter Banana Bread with Copious Chocolate Chips

Yield: One 9-by-5-inch loaf + a small little loaf (mine was a bit too full for just one loaf)

1 1⁄2 cups plus 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour, divided
1 cup plus 1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
3 mashed bananas
1⁄2 cup vegetable oil
2 large eggs
1⁄4 cup cream
1 cup peanut butter (crunchy or creamy
1 1/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and position the rack in the center. Butter a 9-by-5-inch loaf pan, dust it with flour, and knock out the excess flour. Remember you will have enough batter to make a mini loaf or 5-6 muffins, if you pour it all in one loaf pan you’ll have a big over-flowing mess.

In a large bowl, whisk together 11⁄2 cups flour, the sugar, salt, and baking soda.

In another large bowl, whisk together the bananas, oil, eggs, cream, and peanut butter. Toss the chocolate chips in the remaining 1 tablespoon of flour, then stir the chocolate chips into the banana mixture.

Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and pour the wet mixture into it. Fold the dry ingredients into the wet ever so gently until just combined. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 1 hour to 1 hour and 10 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with a few moist crumbs.

Let the loaf cool in the pan for 15 minutes, then turn out onto a rack to cool completely.

The loaf can be stored at room temperature, in an airtight container or wrapped tightly, for up to 3 days.

adapted from Baked Elements

 

Best Banana Bread

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Toasted Banana bread may or may not be one of the best, most perfect foods there is. Especially when your mom made it and sends it with you for you big move. Being able to crack this open and eat this really made me feel at home during the big adjustment. We, as a family, have tried many banana bread recipes over the years—but this one by Tyler Florence is the whole family’s favorite. It has killer flavor and the texture is what dreams are made of: moist deluxe on the inside and a bit crispy on the edges. And bonus—when you toast this delicious bread and add a little butter, it puts it way over to top to magical perfection.

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 overripe bananas (I like two of them to be frozen and thawed)
1 cup sugar
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup pecans, finely chopped

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and lightly butter a 9 by 5-inch loaf pan.

In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, and salt; set aside.

Mash 2 of the bananas with a fork in a small bowl so they still have a bit of texture. With an electric mixer fitted with a wire whisk, whip the remaining bananas and sugar together for a good 3 minutes; you want a light and fluffy banana cream. Add the melted butter, eggs, and vanilla; beat well and scrape down the sides of the bowl. Mix in the dry ingredients just until incorporated; no need to overly blend. Fold in the nuts and the mashed bananas with a rubber spatula. Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan. Give the pan a good rap on the counter to get any air bubbles out.

Bake for about 1 hour and 15 minutes, until golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean. Don’t get nervous if the banana bread develops a crack down the center of the loaf; that’s no mistake, it’s typical. Rotate the pan periodically to ensure even browning. Cool the bread in the pan for 10 minutes or so, and then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely before slicing.

Enjoy the smell, toast the bread, and thank your lucky stars you get to eat this glorious treat.

Blueberry Cornmeal Butter Muffins

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Blueberry Cornmeal Butter Muffins by twocarolines.com

Mornings are better with muffins, and if your muffins are Blueberry Cornmeal Butter Muffins you’re pretty much guaranteed and epic day.  As you might have noticed, we eat blueberries in large amounts around here.  I like to down them by the handful and so does my daughter so we keep a rich supply and sometimes they just call to me saying “please bake me into something delicious” and usually I acquiesce.  The cornmeal makes these have such a magical texture, and I love the lemon zest with the touch of cinnamon in your streusel, they are pretty amazing.  I’ve been making this beautiful batter as a cake for years, but I decided to make it into muffins because they are easier to share, and I freeze what we don’t eat the first day to make for more great muffin mornings.  I give you instructions for the cake version too, in case you have a cake habit like me.

Muffins:

1/2 cup butter at room temperature

1 cup flour

1/2 cup cornmeal

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon table salt

1 cup sugar

2 large eggs

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon grated lemon zest

1/3 cup sour cream

2 cups blueberries

Streusel:

1/2 cup sugar

6 tablespoons all purpose flour

2 tablespoons cornmeal

1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

pinch of salt

3 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces

  1. Preheat oven to 350.  Line 12 muffin tin with liners and lightly spray the bottom (or spray and parchment line an 8×8 pan if making cake).
  2. Whisk the flour, cornmeal, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl, and set aside.
  3. Using an electric mixer beat the butter with sugar in a large bowl until pale and fluffy – at least a few minutes.  Beat in the eggs one at a time, scraping down the bowl occasionally.  Next add the vanilla and zest.
  4. Add a third of flour mixture, all of the sour cream, and another third of the flour, beating until just blended after each addition.  Scrape down sides of bowl then mix the remaining third of the flour mixture with the blueberries folding the flour/blueberry layer into the cake batter (coating your blueberries in the flour helps them stay evenly distributed instead of dropping to the bottom of your muffins).
  5. Fill each muffin liner about 2/3 of the way full.  (or spread into prepared pan for a cake)
  6. To make the streusel combine the dry ingredients than mash in the butter with a fork or pastry blender.  Top each of the muffins with about 1/8-1/4 cup of streusel (or spread evenly on top if you’re making cake).
  7. Bake muffins at 350 for about 20 minutes (in my oven it took 22 minutes) until golden brown and a toothpick comes out clean.  (For a cake about 35 minutes).  cool for about 10 minutes and enjoy!

Recipe adapted from Smitten Kitchen Cookbook Blueberry Cornmeal Butter Cake

Double Chocolate Banana Bread

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Double Chocolate Banana Bread by twocarolines

Don’t these cold rainy days make you want stay indoors and bake delicious sweets?  This Double Chocolate Banana Bread is a new King family staple because as you might of gathered, we are all for anything that gives us chocolate for breakfast.  We seem to always have extra ripe banana’s around so when my favorite food blogger Deb Perelman of Smitten Kitchen posted this bread last year I was totally game.  What makes it so decadently dark is the dutch process cocoa, but it totally works out with normal cocoa as well.  I added a bit more sugar than Deb because I thought it tasted better that way, but if you don’t like your sweet breads very sweet reduce sugar to 3/4 cup.  If you come to my house you can choose from a variety of breakfast chocolates: hot cocoa, nutella waffles, chocolate zucchini muffins and now we also offer this amazing double chocolate banana bread!

3 medium-to-large ripe bananas (the more ripe the better!)
1/2 cup butter, melted
1 cup brown sugar (Deb uses dark brown, but I never have that around)
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon table salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon (optional)
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup Dutch-process cocoa powder
1 cup semisweet or bittersweet chocolate chunks or chips – I use a combo of bitter and semi-sweet

Heat oven to 350°F. Butter a 9×5-inch loaf pan, or spray it with a nonstick baking spray – I also put a little rectangle of parchment in the bottom for guaranteed easy turn out, but that’s up to you.

Mash bananas in the bottom of a large bowl.  Whisk in melted butter, then brown sugar, egg, and vanilla. Place baking soda, salt, cinnamon (if using), flour and cocoa powder in a sifter or fine-mesh strainer and sift over wet ingredients. It’s okay if you don’t want to sift, but it will make any lumps in your cocoa go away.  Stir dry and wet ingredients with a spoon until just combined. Stir in chocolate chunks or chips.

Pour into prepared pan and bake 55 to 65 minutes, until a tester or toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out batter-free.  Cool in pan for 10 to 15 minutes, then run a knife around the edge and invert it out onto a cooling rack. Serve warm or at room temperature. I sometimes sprinkle with a little powdered sugar or a dollop of whip cream.

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double chocolate banana bread by twocarolines

Recipe adapted from Smitten Kitchen Double Chocolate Banana Bread