Category Archives: Baked Goods

Spicy Island Cornbread – Ethnic Vegetarian


Kim here with a great spicy cornbread recipe!

I have made only one recipe from the book, The Ethnic Vegetarian, but the names of the recipes alone make this book so appealing to me. Not only is there spicy island cornbread, but there is South African corn pudding, fruit and sweet potato fritters, peanut biscuits, caribbean sweet potato bisque, and black bean and plantain fritters. Seriously. this book is for me. I don’t own it, but rented it from my local library. I know I need to own this now.

The  spicy island cornbread was amazing, and I didn’t even have tofu or hot sauce like the recipe calls for. (I love spicy cornbread, but I was home for the holidays and I took all the hot sauce from my parents for my own apartment. Talk about backfiring.)

The recipe I did was similar to the original and goes like this.

Ingredients:

1 cup cornmeal
1 cup whole wheat or all-purpose flour (I used the latter)
3 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 cayenne pepper
1 large egg
1 cup milk (original recipe calls for soymilk)
4 tablespoons sour cream (original recipe calls for 2 oz soft tofu)
1/4 cup softened butter
2 tsp orange juice (I used this to replace the lack of hot sauce, it was delicious!)
1 tsp grated orange zest

Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

Sift flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, garlic powder, black pepper, salt, cayenne pepper.

Beat egg, add milk, sour cream, butter, orange juice, and orange zest. Mix together.

Combine wet to dry ingredients. It will be bery thin liquid. Pour into prepared muffin tin. Bake for 20 minutes. Makes 12.

This was a delicious and spicy bread. Peppery and sweet and buttery, and would have been spicy if I put in the hot sauce. If you really don’t like spice, you can omit the cayenne pepper. It will still be a great muffin!


Cherry Cheese Scones



A rare occurrence, but Kim and I followed this recipe exactly, and guess what? They turned out amazing! Many times, when we’re just cooking for the two of us, we skimp on or swap ingredients, to make it healthier, and the dishes (usually) turn out tasting good, but nothing to rave about. THESE are rave-worthy!

Kim was craving the scones we had while in London, specifically the ones from our hostel cafe, which were fantastically buttery and rich. (with clotted cream and jam!) So she insisted we follow the recipe to see how close our Joy of Cooking got to English scones.

The English, historically and/or traditionally, have something called Afternoon Tea or High Tea (or just Tea, actually) that is served with little biscuits, scones and light sandwiches. We wanted to have a traditional “Afternoon Tea” while there, but they’re quite expensive – cheapest was £19 per person!

Kim had these juicy dried cherries – they were halfway between normal cherries and dried cherries. I’ve never seen that before, but I’m glad I’ve been introduced to them – they’re delicious! Very sweet on their own, but delicious.

Kim and I LOVE to mix sweet and savory, so of course we opted to make cherry cheese scones, so we swapped out the blueberries from the Joy of cooking recipe and added the cherries and cheese, hoping the consistency wasn’t changed too much by the cheese, and nixed the streusel topping. (Okay, I lied, I guess we did change the recipe…) Oh, and we forgot the vanilla extract too, but I think that worked in our favor, with the cheesiness.

Cherry Cheese Scones (altered from this recipe in Joy of Cooking cookbook.)

2 cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp salt
6 Tbsp chilled, unsalted butter
1 egg
1/2 cup heavy cream (or milk)

Heat oven to 400 degrees F. In a large bowl mix flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Cut the butter into small pieces and blend with flour mixture until it’s crumbly. You can do this with a pastry cutter, grinder, or with your hands (my favorite way!) But we ground in in a grinder this time.

In a second bowl beat the egg, then add the cream. Add to flour mixture and stir/blend until dough comes together. Don’t overmix the cough, or your scones will be tough.

Spray the pan and transfer dough to pan. Knead the dough 4 or 5 times and mold into a flat round shape and cut into eighths, and separate the triangular pieces so each side bakes with a crusty exterior.

Bake for about 18-22 minutes or until a toothpick poked in the center comes out clean. I’d check after 15 minutes though, to see how they’re doing. Scones are best eaten fresh, but they were alright the next day too.

What we thought: DELICIOUS! I raved about them to everyone. I already remade them for co-workers and will make them next week when my friends and I have our own little afternoon tea! Cheers!

I know what a scone is, but what is clotted cream, cumpets, or lemon curd???
A brief history of the scone.
Wait, the English don’t pronounce it scone as in cone?

UPDATE: And speak of the devil (scones), a new YouTube food channel, Sorted, I started watching, literally yesterday, posted scones today! And they look so good, I think I might just have to make them tonight, for dessert!

-Beth


Peanut Butter Banana Bread Pudding


Kim here.

I invited my brother’s girlfriend, the wonderful Sarah, over to finally bake together! And Beth came home as well! We all love to cook and bake, so honestly, I have no idea why it took this long for this to happen. We made an amazing bread pudding, and I LOVE peanut butter, bananas, bread, and I love them all together in bread pudding. I used the photos of this recipe for my 365 photography challenge. Recipe below.

Peanut Butter Banana Bread Pudding


Onion Fennel Orange Upside-down Shortcake


(Kim here.)

Whoa, what a title, there’s a lot in this recipe! I made it the other day from the Savory Baking Cookbook by Mary Cech. Like I’ve said a million times, I love this cookbook. The Chili Cheese bread is pretty much ridiculously amazing (tonight I made corn muffins, and you bet I dropped about a cup of cheese into the batter when no one was looking.) (Just kidding, people were looking, and they definitely didn’t care ).

I’m doing a 365 photography challenge and today I was…. a bit lazy, you could say. Instead of taking a new picture, I used the onion upside-down cake photo from two days ago, but hadn’t yet had time to edit and post. I’m a busy woman, so I don’t mind having two photoshoots on a day when I have the time. I won’t get too much into it, but I don’t really like this photo too much. I’m think I’m still sad I’m not Katie Quinn Davis. ; )

onion fennel orange upside-down shortcake

Onion Topping
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
3 medium onions, thinly sliced
1/2 cup dry sherry
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon fennel seeds
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup water (I forgot this)
1 small red bell pepper, roasted, peeled, and roughly chopped (I forgot this too)

Shortcake
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
zest of 1 medium orange
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1 cup whole milk

Combine all the onion topping ingredients – except the last two! – into a large saucepan and cook on medium high for 25 minutes.

To prepare shortcake, put the flour, baking powder, salt, orange zest, and butter in your food processor. Pulse for 10 seconds the mixture is well-combined. It’ll look pretty much the same, so I tasted it to make sure the butter was fully incorporated. You may want to test this yourself mostly because it tastes good. Add the milk and pulse until the mixture forms a dough. You could eat it at this stage too, I wouldn’t blame you.

Add the red peppers and 1/2 water to the onions. I completely forgot to do this, and it still turned out, but I’m thinking it might have been even BETTER with these ingredients. Can’t say for sure.

Spread the dough over the onions. I had difficulty doing this. It was certainly not as easy as wasting time on Pinterest. Just try and cover the onions and you’ll be okay. Bake for about 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the shortcake comes out clean. Cool about five minutes, then set a plate over the pan and carefully flip it over so the cake falls out of the pan. Serve IMMEDIATELY. Or you can wait and eat it later.


Dark Chocolate & Banana Muffins


UPDATE: I just discovered that Kim and I, here at Fourthbrookstick, have been awarded the Liebster Award from Nicola at Unhip Squirrel! I couldn’t believe it! We’d like to offer other people ideas for new ways of eating and thinking about food and cooking, and it’s great to be recognized for that! Thanks so much Nicola! Make sure to visit her blog too, because she’s got some delicious stuff!

Round up your best recipes, y’all, because now Kim and I must now choose 5 from all your amazing blogs to forward this award to!

And on that note, of unique recipes, here’s a not-so-startlingly unique concept, but delicious never-the-less!

With peanuts. Of course. I was inspired to make this from Caron’s Chocolate Banana Bread recipe at VeganMonster. I’ve been waiting for my bananas to ripen enough to bake with, and when I read Caron’s blog, I’d found a match!

I don’t actually own measuring spoons, so since I’ve moved out of Mom & Dad’s, when I cook, I kind of got in the habit of guesstimating, well, everything. So I was a pleasantly surprised when these muffins turned out a perfect light, moist texture and delicious taste.

1/2 cup whole wheat flour

1/4 cup flax seed

1/4 cup oat flour

1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon cinnamon

a couple pinches salt

1/2 cup applesauce

2 bananas

1/4 cup dark chocolate chips +/or crushed peanuts

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine whole wheat flour, flax seed, oat flour, baking soda, cinnamon, chocolate chips and peanuts in one bowl.

Mush bananas and combine with applesauce. These, and the dark chocolate, are our sweeteners. Notice there’s no sugar or butter in this recipe. This is an incredibly tasty, “no-guilt”, as they say, muffin. Dark chocolate, as opposed to milk chocolate, or even semi-sweet chocolate, has less sugar and cocoa butter (fat), while tasting, in my opinion, far better than milk chocolate.

Slowly add flour mixture to applesauce mixture, folding it into itself.

Spray muffin pan, and fill muffin cups to somewhat overflowing. Bake for about 15 minutes, but check on them after 10.

What I thought: Once these were baked, and I’d taken my photographs, I curled up on the couch and ate these with a cup of coffee and read “Sense & Sensibility.” Perfect. They were perfectly sweet, healthy, and filling.

-Beth


Grapefruit Rosemary Quick Bread


Kim here.

My dad bought a lot of grapefruits a couple weeks ago, and although I like grapefruit, I guess I wasn’t wanting them every single day. So we still had about a half dozen this morning.

grapefruit rosemary bread at fourthbroomstick.wordpress.com

Today I woke up thinking, in this order, “It’s Sunday, it’s sunny, we have grapefruit, and I’d really like to combine it with rosemary.”

So I made this.

Ingredients

4 tablespoons coconut oil

2 cups whole wheat flour (sifted)

2 tablespoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon rosemary

1/4 teaspoon ginger

1/4 teaspoon marjoram

2 eggs

1/2 cup powdered sugar

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

2 grapefruits

Grapefruit Rosemary Bread at fourbroomstick.wordpress.com

Melt 1 tablespoon coconut oil in a 5X9 loaf pan in your preheated oven. Remove once melted and tilt pan until coated in oil. This will make a tasty crust.

Cut the skins off the grapefruits and squeeze out the juices, as much as you can. Use a food process to blend what’s leftover from squeezing out the juice. Keep 1 cup of the juice. You should probably drink the rest, because it tastes fantastic! Keep about 1/2 cup of the blended pulp.

Combine flour, baking powder, salt, and the three spices in a large bowl. Whisk the eggs and sugar together until frothy. Melt remaining coconut oil and set aside. Add grapefruit juice, pulp, and vanilla extract. Combine with flour and mix. Pour in melted coconut oil. Pour into prepared bread loaf pan and bake for 30-35 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Make sure to smell it occasionally while it’s baking because it smells awesome. I was surprised how good it smelled.

Grapefruit Rosemary Bread at fourbroomstick.wordpress.com

I did not use as much sugar as I have called for in the recipe. I only used 2 tablespoons, but it was not enough to cover the tartness of the grapefruit. Even though I generally like tartness, I would prefer this if it were sweeter. I used the paler grapefruit, but I think grapefruits with deeper color are sweeter. I ate mine with agave nectar, and it was delicious, but you could use a glaze as well.


Peanut Butter Yogurt Pie


Beth and I love Savory Pie, Beth and I love Yogurt, and Beth and I definitely love Peanut Butter. Perhaps it has never been mentioned on this blog, but Yogurt and Peanut Butter mixed together are one of those things that makes gray skies happy gray skies and running late happy running late and needing-to-be-quiet-at-night happy needing-to-be-quiet-at-night. If you try it, keep it mind it’s very delicious.

So what could be wrong with combining all these things together? Apparently a lot. If you make a Peanut Butter Yogurt Pie, don’t follow this recipe, you probably won’t like it, especially if you’re not Beth or me.

Crust Ingredients

2  cups crushed pretzels

1/2 cup chopped peanuts

3/4 cup butter

Filling Ingredients

1 cup Peanut Butter

2 cups Yogurt

1 egg

Blend crust ingredients in a food processor, pack down in pie pan and bake for 20 minutes at 350 degree pre-heated oven.

Combine Filling ingredients, pour into baked pie crust and bake for 40 minutes.

If you make this pie, I recommend not eating it.