Orange Cardamom Banana Bread

Adapted from James Beard, Beard on Bread, page 170

INGREDIENTS:

1/2 stick butter
1/2 c sugar
1/2 c honey
1 tbsp molasses
2 eggs
1.5 c mashed very ripe bananas (3 large bananas)
1 tsp orange extract
1/2 tsp almond extract
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp fresh ground cardamom
1.5 c all purpose flour
1/4 c almond flour (or ground almonds or 1/2 c sliced almonds)
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. Cream butter in kitchenaid.
  3. Add sugar and honey. Mix.
  4. Add eggs. Mix.
  5. Add bananas. Mix.
  6. Add extracts. Mix.
  7. Add flours, salt and baking soda. Mix.
  8. (If using sliced almonds, fold them in now).
  9. Bake in 12 x 4.2 x 2.5 inch loaf tin and pour in batter. Bake for 1 hour, or until knife inserted in the center comes out clean.
  10. Enjoy!

NOTE: I baked in two baby bundt pans, a baby sponge pan, and a silicone peanut butter cup pan. Silicon mat was done in 13 min, other pans done in 18.

ICING (optional):

4 tbsp confectioner’s sugar
1 tsp lemon extract
1/4 c (add a little at a time! Could be less!) half and half

  1. Mix. Drizzle on cooled cake.
  2. Enjoy!
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French Almond Macarons

Adapted from Martha Stewart

INGREDIENTS:

1 1/4 cups confectioners’ sugar
1 1/2 cups finely ground almonds
3 large egg whites (use the leftovers from the French Pot de Creme)
Pinch of salt
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

DIRECTIONS:

Preheat oven to 300 degrees.

Sift confectioners’ sugar into a bowl. Whisk in almonds; set aside.

Put egg whites in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Beat on medium speed until foamy, then beat in salt. Beat in granulated sugar, 1 teaspoon at a time, until medium-soft peaks form.

Add in sugar and flour mixture.

Add in almond and egg white mixture.

Add in vanilla extract.

At this point, the meringue has deflated. It’s supposed to be like that. These are basically cookies, not that airy meringue that sits in the oven for like six hours.

Spoon batter by tablespoons onto silpat lined cookie sheet. Fits on one cookie sheet.

Bake until macarons are slightly firm and can be gently lifted off parchment (bottoms will be dry), 20 to 25 minutes.

Let cool on sheets 5 minutes.

Transfer macarons on parchment to a wire rack; let cool completely.

NOTE: This is the YUMMIEST recipe EVER. Chewy and DELICIOUS. Buttery taste (the ground almonds are like 18% oil, they add a buttery taste). Family favorite. First dessert to go, every time.

Use leftover egg yolks for French Pot de Creme or for the Butternut Squash Ravioli Pasta Dough.