Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Heritage Bundt Cake

A friend sent me a recipe for a Guinness stout bundt. The original recipe is from Smitten Kitchen, a food blog I follow regularly. I was imagining a chocolate stout cake kissed with Bailey's drizzle. It would have been perfect for St. Patty's day, right? Well, unfortunately for me, I was hit by some nasty virus that was going around. I couldn't get out of bed for a full 24 hours! The next day was better, I was able to move from the bed to the couch.

Anyways, the thing I fail to mention is that I don't own a bundt pan. That's just a tiny detail that kept me from making the cake in the first place. I finally bit the bullet and went and got one. Not just any pan, I was able to score myself the heritage bundt pan from Williams-Sonoma! According to their website, it's only available online, but I found it (it was the only one) in a store. It was meant to be. I swooped it up and promptly took it home.

I'll save the chocolate stout for another day. I decided to use the heritage bundt cake recipe that was included with the pan. Of course, I kicked things up a notch by adding the zest of a very large lemon.

How freaken cool looking is that cake? Thank you awesome pan!

Monday, April 11, 2011

Gluten Free: Banana Bread

I was ready to make plain old banana bread (you just can't go wrong with it). But something within me was itching to do it gluten free. Maybe it has something to do with the fact that I follow Bea over at La Tartine Gourmande. Bea is a food blogger, food stylist, and a food photographer that is living in Boston. I think she is my new hero. Bea is also allergic to gluten, thus her recipes have an interesting spin.

I've been curious about dabling in gluten-free for awhile now. Some days I wonder if I am gluten intolerant. Wouldn't that be a shame if it turned out to be true?! (I love me a good wheat beer). Anyways, Bea had an amazing recipe for jacked up banana bread. But I wasn't nuts about the ingredients list. I didn't want to go and spend a ton on random ingredients. Not to mention, I have no clue what almond butter is.

While perusing the grocery store aisles, I came across Bob's Red Mill gluten-free all purpose flour. Low and behold, there was a recipe for banana bread on the back. It seemed simple enough. Why not give it a try?

Not too shabby if you ask me. It wasn't as fragarant as "normal" banana bread, but I blame that on not having enough bananas. Along with not enough bananas and overbaking, it came out a touch on the dry side. Both Jake and I really liked that it wasn't as sweet, a little bitter actually. That might have something to do with the extra dark chocolate I put in it. I will cut back on amount of chocolate next time.

Bob's Red Mill - No Hassle Gluten Free Banana Bread

•1/3 cup Canola Oil 
•2/3 cup Brown Sugar, packed
•2 large Eggs
•1 tsp. Vanilla
•1-3/4 cups Gluten Free All Purpose Baking Flour
•2 tsp. Baking Powder
•1-1/4 tsp. Cinnamon
•1 tsp. Xanthan Gum
•1/2 tsp. Salt
•1-1/2 cups Banana, mashed
•1/2 cup Pecans or Walnuts, chopped
•1/2 cup Raisins (Unsulfured)

Celia's ingredient edits:
Vegetable oil for Canola Oil
Dark brown sugar
1-1/4 cup mashed bananas (I only had 3 and one of them wasn't ripe enough)
1/4 cup finely chopped walnuts
1/2 cup chopped 70% Callebaut chocolate

Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease 9x5-inch non-stick loaf pan. Cream together oil, sugar, eggs, and vanilla in large bowl with eletric mixer. Add flour, xanthan gum, salt, baking powder and cinnamon to egg mixture, alternating with bananas. Beat until smooth. Stir in nuts and raisins. Batter will be somewhat soft. Transfer to pan. Bake for 1 hour. *I baked mine for an extra 15 minutes*