Saturday, April 22, 2006

During Spring cleaning, I found about six frozen bananas on the upper shelf of the freezer yesterday morning. I wanted the skins to make a good wake up food for my roses, so I hauled out my ole banana bread recipe and went to work on the frozen nanas.
We've been eating everything on banana bread since yesterday...its the best when its toasted and spread with Teddies natural peanut mmm mmm.
I don't like crunchy stuff baked in my bread, but feel free to use pecans or walnuts, or whatever...just fold them in at the end. Pregrease a 9 x 5 x 3 pan and preheat oven for 350.

1 stick butter
3/4 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
2 cups flour (1 can be whole wheat)
1 tspn baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3-4 large ripe, peeled, mashed bananas
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Cream butter and sugar and then add eggs one at a time, stirring til mixed with each. Sift in dry ingredients and mix in, add bananas and vanilla and if you want, nuts and mix slightly. Pour into loaf pan..Can easily be doubled.

Cook in center of heated oven for about an hour, or until the top is crispy. Insert toothpick or fork in center to test for doneness.

Take the peels and chop them up with water and add the day's coffee grounds. Spread around base of roses and rhodies, and azaleas for an great organic feed.


Thursday, April 20, 2006

Easter Sunday was a very long day with nothing going on. The weather was bad and nobody invited us to an Easter brunch, no nuthin'! Feeling sorry for ourselves, we tried to do everything from going to the gym..closed to going to Hannaford to find something fun for dinner...closed! We were SOOL. So we got in the car around dinner time and drove around and around looking for someplace to land...even Pizza Hut was closed. We ended up going to the Irving Station in Searsport to eat. How sad and pathetic were we! The sign outside said "Join us for Easter!" We were one of probably 5 tables, all of which had lovely plastic Easter centerpieces complete with sparkly plastic and velvetine easter egg.

We used to love coming up here, because the food was relatively good. I think they have changed food merchants though because their chicken fingers were not as good as they used to be. Greg liked the fish and chips, but said that he could get better ones at Willy World in Northport (There is a for sale sign in front of Willy World in case anyone is interested)

We had a bunch of laughs and toasted the Easter Bunny. All in all a pathetic, yet strangely satisfying Easter. We came home and watched movies, had popsicles and popcorn and went to bed fat and happy.


Sunday, April 16, 2006

I got it in my craw this morning that I NEEDED to dye some easter eggs. Greg thought I was nuts and yelled so from bed where he was still "sleeping." We only had a half dozen eggs, so it was going to be a short dyeing session. Unfortunately, one cracked in the pot, so I only had five.
We also only had some red wine vinegar, but that apparently didn't affect the dyes. We learned about the power of adding oil to the dyes when we were young, so I added some oil and voila! It took me all of 10 minutes to dye these and now I can go on with my Easter day knowing that I participated. We are not cooking dinner for anyone nor have we been invited anywhere, so we will spend a quiet day going about our daily chores.

Happy Easter Readers, I hope you all have a wonderful day.


We haven't been to potluck in several months, mostly because we are usually never here that weekend (I think we plan it that way subconsciously). Anyway, Greg had to go down to Brunswick to help a friend move into her house and I stayed here to do chores and figure out what to make. I always try to make something fun and new (except for the time we arrived with cream cheese and jelly with crackers!) because cooking for me is a sport. I thought about making Chocolate cheesecake, and I should have with what I ended up making, but I wanted something Eastery. I found a recipe for Sweet Ricotta Cheese Tart, essentially cheescake in a crust. Apparently it is a traditional Italian dessert to serve at Easter. It sounded good and turned out to be a fairly elegant presentation, but I think I would serve it with a raspberry sauce next time. What is nice about it is that it is very light, not too sweet and really tasted like one of those Italian pasteries that you find in shops in New York. My recommendation would also be to make it a day ahead of when you want it so that it can sit in the fridge to meld the flavors. Below is the recipe. I doctored the one I found by folding in sour cream and substituting Orange Licquor for vanilla.

Preheat oven to 350

1 3/4 cup flour
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon grated orange peel
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder

Combine ingredients and then add

1 stick unsalted butter, chilled and diced

you can either mix above in a food processor or combine by hand until a coarse meal forms.

Then add two eggs

combine mixture to form moist lumps. Scoop together in a ball and knead on a floured work surface. Divide into two balls, one slightly bigger than the other . Wrap smaller and chill in freezer.
Roll out larger into a round large enough to cover a 9" tart pan bottom and sides. ( I used a higher sided 7" tart pan) make sure it has a removable bottom.

For filling:
16 oz whole milk ricotta
3 oz cream cheese Softened
1/2 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 tablespoon corn starch
1 teaspoon vanilla extract or orange licquor
1 1/2 teaspoons grated orange peel
4- 5 oz sour cream

Using electric mixer, beat ricotta and cream cheese cornstarch and vanilla. Beat in 1/2 cup sugar, orange peel, and eggs and vanilla. Take out beaters and fold in sour cream. Transfer filling to tart pan.

Roll out smaller ball of dogh into 10" round to cover top of tart. Crimp sides and trim excess. Cut four slits in top of tart and bake in the oven for approximately 1 hour or until golden brown. Cool completely and serve.