Deb’s Healthy Banana Blueberry Mini-Muffins

contributed by Deb Reno

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1 cup whole wheat flour

3/4 cup cream of wheat or quick cooking grits

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 cup brown sugar

3 tablespoons coconut oil, melted

1  egg, room temperature

2 egg whites, room temperature

1 1/2 cup mashed banana

3/4 cup blueberries, room temperature, tossed w/flour (frozen work wonderfully…just thaw in a bit of tepid water & drain.)

Combine flours, cream of wheat, salt, baking powder & baking soda in a medium bowl.  Set aside.

Combine brown sugar and coconut oil.

Add egg & egg whites.

Alternately add the flour mixture and the banana a little at a time, ending with the flour mixture.

Fold in blueberries.

Spoon into mini muffin tins.

Bake for 9-12 minutes at 400°.

Makes 65 mini muffins.

NOTES:  I might use a little less brown sugar next time, as long as the bananas were very ripe.  Also, I’d like to try using unsweetened applesauce instead of the coconut oil in the future.  Adding a few more blueberries wouldn’t hurt either…

Nutrition Facts Serving Size 14 g Calories 27 Calories from Fat 7 Total Fat 0.8g Saturated Fat 0.6g Cholesterol 3mg Sodium 28mg Total Carbohydrates 4.7g Sugars 1.7g Protein 0.6g Vitamin A 0% Vitamin C 1% Calcium 1% Iron 2%

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Pumpkin Cinnamon Swirl Bread

contributed by Shawna Hawkins

Yields 1 loaf

Ingredients:

2 1/4 tsp yeast

1/4 cup warm water, 110 degrees

1/2 tsp granulated sugar

1/4 cup milk, warmed to 110 degrees

2 Tbsp molasses

1/4 cup granulated sugar

3/4 tsp salt

1 Tbsp butter, softened

1 tsp pumpkin pie spice

1 egg

1 cup canned pumpkin puree (I just used the whole small can)

3 1/4 – 4 cups all purpose flour (depending on the humidity you may not use it all)

For the swirl:

1/4 cup butter, softened

1/3 cup light-brown sugar

2 tsp cinnamon

Directions:

In the bowl of an electric mixer combine water, yeast and 1/2 tsp granulated sugar. Whisk until yeast has dissolved and let rest 5 minutes.

Stir in milk, molasses, 1/4 cup granulated sugar, salt, softened butter, nutmeg, ginger, egg and pumpkin puree until well combined.

Slowly add flour until it forms a ball and knead with a dough hook attachment until dough is smooth and elastic.

Transfer dough to an oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until double, about 1 hour.

Butter an 8 1/2″ x 4 1/2″ in pan, set aside. In a small bowl mix together very soft butter, brown sugar and cinnamon,to form a paste and set aside.

Punch the risen dough down and turn onto a lightly floured surface.

Roll dough into a large rectangle, about 22″ x 8.” Spread with butte mixture, coming within about 1/2″ of the edges.

Roll dough up jelly roll style, starting with the short side.

Place rolled dough in greased loaf pan and let rise in a warm place until doubled about 45 minutes.

Bake 350 degrees for 45 – 60 minutes.  Allow to cool in pan 5 minutes then remove to a wire rack to cool completely before slicing.   Makes great toast!

Homemade Baked Doughnuts

contributed by Bobbi Gustason

1 egg

1/4 cup sugar

1 cup milk, 115 degrees (warm)

1 Tbs. active dry yeast

1 tsp. salt

2 tsp. vanilla extract

3 cups flour, divided

1 stick of butter (4 oz.), cut up and room temperature

Coating:

5 Tbs. butter, melted  (or trans fat free margarine)

powdered sugar or cinnamon sugar (1 cup sugar and 1 Tb. cinnamon)

INSTRUCTIONS:

1.  With the paddle attachment on the mixer, at medium speed mix the egg and sugar together until combined.

2.  Add the milk, yeast, salt and vanilla.

3.  On low speed, add 2 cups of flour and mix.

4.  Change to your dough hook.

Mix and add the stick of butter in little by little.  Make sure it is incorporated.

5.  Slowly add another 1 cup of flour.  You want the dough to be pulling away from the bowl and not sticky.  Adjust your flour accordingly, but mine hit the mark at a total of 3 cups.  One time I made these it took 3.5 cups.  Allow the dough hook to knead for you until smooth – about 3-5 minutes.  (The flour is dependent on your temperature, the humidity in the air)

6.   Now cover your bowl and let it rise for 1 hour.  I try to find the warmest place in my house for this part.

7.  Punch the dough down and roll into 1/2 ” or so.  The thickness is up to you and what you want to do with your doughnuts.  For traditional circle hole doughnuts, use a 3″ cookie cutter (or biscuit cutter) and then cut out another 1″ hole in the middle.  I don’t own a 1″ hole cutter, but my melon baller worked just fine.  Pull the dough apart and make the hole a little bigger or the donut will close in on itself.  Feel free to use cookie cutters, etc.  Have fun.  The donut holes are good too so don’t throw those away!  We used snowflakes, circles and gingerbread man cutters.

8.  Put your doughnuts on a greased or lined cookie sheet.  Allow to rise again 25-30 minutes covered.

9.  Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Bake normal 3″ donuts for about 8 -10 minutes.  The donut holes took about 5-6 minutes.  My huge donuts took about 10 minutes.  Just watch and when they are light golden brown they are done. They’ll be mostly golden – they don’t need to be completely brown because the bottoms of mine were medium brown while the tops were light to medium golden.

10.  These cool really fast.  Put them on the cooling rack and begin your toppings. 11.

To coat the donuts, brush or dip into melted butter.  Shake or toss in your coating.  Or frost or dip in glaze.

Kay’s Shortbread

from allrecipes.com, contributed by Laura Thompson

2 cups all-purpose flour

1/4 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar

1 cup butter, softened

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 tablespoons white sugar (I actually didn’t use this at all and I am not missing it)

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 (I actually did 325 because my oven runs hot)

In a medium bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder, salt and confectioners’ sugar. Stir in the butter and vanilla, and mix until a stiff dough forms. Pat dough into 9-inch round cake pan, and prick well  with a fork. Sprinkle remaining sugar over dough.  (I didn’t sprinkle anymore sugar over the dough, and I didn’t miss it, but you sure can do this step if you like it a little sweeter)

Bake for 30 to 35 minutes in the preheated oven, or until golden. (even though I lowered the temp of my oven, I still baked mine for 30 minutes, and it was great. I started checking it at 20 minutes, however, because I was paranoid)

Cut into wedges while warm.  Cool on wire rack; separate cookies.

*****Another tip–I tore off some parchment paper and cut it into a large circle so that when I put the dough in the pan, it would stick up a bit. Then, when the cookies came out of the oven, I picked up the cookies using the parchment paper and deposited them on my cooling rack, and then cut them on my cooling rack while they were still hot. In my opinion, this made for very easy clean up and really helped me get the cookies out of the round pan without destroying them. 🙂

Chocolate Croissants

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contributed by Alison Alves from tasteofhome.com

  • 12 unsliced croissants
  • 2 cups milk chocolate chips
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup milk
  • 4 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 cup half-and-half cream
  • 3 teaspoons vanilla extract

Directions

  • Cut a slit into the side of each croissant; fill with about 2 tablespoons chocolate chips. In a shallow bowl, combine the sugar, cornstarch and cinnamon; whisk in milk until smooth. Whisk in the eggs, cream and vanilla.
  •    Dip croissants into egg mixture. Place in two greased 15-in. x 10-in. x 1-in. baking pans. Bake at 400° for 7-9 minutes or until golden brown. Serve warm. Yield: 1 dozen.

Black Bean Chili

contributed by Laurel Turner

Ingredients

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

1 onion, diced

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 pound ground turkey

3 (15 ounce) cans black beans, undrained

1 (14.5 ounce) can crushed tomatoes

1 1/2 tablespoons chili powder

1 tablespoon dried oregano

1 tablespoon dried basil leaves

1 tablespoon red wine vinegar

Directions

Heat the oil in a large heavy pot over medium heat; cook onion and garlic until onions are translucent.

Add turkey and cook, stirring, until meat is brown.

Stir in beans, tomatoes, chili powder, oregano, basil and vinegar.

Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer 60 minutes or more, until flavors are well blended.

King’s Cake

contributed by Christina Lunsford

Dough:

1/4-ounce package yeast

1/2 cup warm water

1/2 cup scalded milk

1/4 cup sugar (I used sugar and splenda mix)

1/3 cup butter or shortening

1 teaspoon salt

1 egg

3 1/2 to 4 cups all-purpose flour (I used 1 & 1/2 all purpose and 2 cups whole wheat)

Filling:

1/2 cup melted butter, plus more for pan

3/4 cup sugar, plus more for pan (mixed brown sugar and splenda)

2 tablespoons ground cinnamon

3/4 cup raisins, walnuts, or pecans, optional (i left these out)

Glaze:

4 tablespoons butter

2 cups powdered sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

3 to 6 tablespoons hot water (4 tbs was too runny for me…)

Directions:

Heat oven to 350 degrees F.

In a small bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water and set aside.

In a large bowl mix milk that has cooled down to luke warm, sugar, melted butter, salt and egg.

Add 2 cups of flour and mix until smooth.

Add yeast mixture.

Mix in remaining flour until dough is easy to handle (I used all flour).

Knead dough on lightly floured surface for 5 to 10 minutes.

Place in well-greased bowl, cover and let rise until doubled in size, usually 1 to 1 1/2 hours.

When doubled in size, punch down dough.

Roll out on a floured surface into a 15 by 9-inch rectangle.

Spread melted butter all over dough.

Mix sugar and cinnamon and sprinkle over buttered dough.

Sprinkle with walnuts, pecans, or raisins if desired.

Beginning at the 15-inch side, role up dough and pinch edges together to seal forming a large O.

I stretched the ring out (very carefully) to make sure the hole in the middle was big.

Coat the bottom of baking pan with butter and sprinkle with sugar. Place big O on the pan and let rise until dough is doubled, about 45 minutes.

Bake for about 30 minutes or until nicely browned.

Meanwhile, mix butter, powdered sugar, and vanilla.

Add hot water 1 tablespoon at a time until the glaze reaches desired consistency.

If desired, separate into 3 sandwich bags and add food color to make purple, yellow, and green.

Store in fridge while O is baking.

Then cut TINY slit in a corner of each bag and squirt all over the slightly cooled big O…

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