Banana Chocolate Chip Zucchini Cookies

Banana Chocolate Chip Zucchini Cookies

What, another squash recipe? Why, yes, of course. There has to be some way to share yummy recipes with others who are trying to use up those zealously producing plants.

I wasn’t sure at first bite if I was going to love these cookies, but they definitely grew on me. Most likely the main reason was that they looked so pale and cakey when they came out of the oven. I am used to my chocolate chip cookies being golden brown and slightly crisp. These were not. I was worried that they were still raw based on the color of the top of the cookie, but when checking the bottom I could see that they were browned like they were supposed to be.

The convincing factor was that they freeze really well. I sealed them in a gallon ziploc freezer bag, stuck them in the freezer, and have proceeded to take one or two out here or there over the month or so that they have been in our house. I am down to the last five or so and I am debating about whether I should make another batch to freeze. I’m just not sure if I need more sweets in the house right now, but they were a great way to use up some squash. Enjoy!

**You can see from the photo that I used both green zucchini and yellow summer squash. Both are interchangeable in the squash recipes that I post.**

Banana Chocolate Chip Zucchini Cookies
Source: Inside Bru Crew Life

3/4 cup shortening
2 cups sugar
2 eggs
2 cups grated zucchini or summer squash, squeezed dry
2 ripe bananas, mashed
3 3/4 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Cream the shortening and sugar. Add the eggs and beat again. Stir in zucchini and banana.

Sift together the dry ingredients. Slowly add to wet ingredients until incorporated. Stir in chocolate chips by hand.

Drop by spoonfuls onto baking sheets. Bake for 10 minutes; cool on pan for 2 minutes. Remove to wire rack to cool completely. Store in a sealed container; can be frozen.

Makes about 3 dozen cookies

Farfalle with Zucchini and White Beans

Farfalle wzucchini and white beans

With all of the zucchini and summer squash coming out of just two plants in our garden I knew that I couldn’t get away with making only baked goods if I planned to use as much of the veggie as possible. This recipe was a treasure of a find! It comes together so quickly and tastes so good!

While the pasta is boiling, the squash and pepper are sauteing. The beans and pasta just need to be added and heated through. Seriously, this takes 15 minutes tops to get it from stove top to table.

It is a vegetarian dish and since we are not vegetarians I was surprised that the beans added the “meat” like texture to the dish. I guess you can tell I don’t cook with beans super often. The next day I did add in a bit of shredded chicken but it really didn’t add much to the dish. Simple and tasty, what’s not to like? Enjoy!

Farfalle with Zucchini and White Beans
Source: Health

6 ounces uncooked farfalle (bow tie pasta)
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 small zucchini or summer squash (about 6 ounces), cut into small strips
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
1 small orange bell pepper, seeded and cut into small strips
1/2 cup canned white beans, rinsed and drained
Parmesan cheese (for garnish)

Cook the pasta according to package directions. Drain, and set aside.

Heat the olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Stir in zucchini, salt, and pepper; cook until the zucchini begins to soften (2-3 minutes), stirring frequently. Stir in the bell pepper and beans; cook until bell pepper is softened (about 2 minutes), stirring frequently.

Add pasta to skillet; cook until heated through (about 2 minutes), stirring constantly. Serve in bowls; top with Parmesan cheese.

Makes 4 – 1 cup servings

Apple Cinnamon Pancakes

Apple Cinnamon Pancakes

You can bet that the evening the boy is assigned to make dinner it will most likely be a breakfast entree, and tonight was no exception. He wants to make pancakes so often that I told him that if he picked pancakes he would have to “spruce them up a bit”. After clarification of what it means to “spruce something up” he agreed to go with apples and cinnamon as his “spruce”.

Even with how yummy these looked and sounded this meal almost didn’t happen tonight. It got to the point where I was so hungry I just wanted to eat something, anything. After deciding that we shouldn’t just go get huge ice cream cones for our meal and we really didn’t want to eat out, we agreed that we would make it a family affair and all pitch in to get it made quick. While the males made the pancakes, I tackled the topping. It all went fast and I’m glad that we decided to stick with the plan of having them for dinner. They were delicious!

The recipe was perfect for our current family of 3, but I would imagine that if you have a few more family members you will want to double the recipe. We had some leftover apple topping that went great on some vanilla ice cream. No wasting here, right? Too late to have breakfast for dinner? Plan on having them in the morning, they are not overly sweet and are quick to whip up. Enjoy!

Apple Cinnamon Pancakes
Slightly modified from: Creme de la Crumb

Pancakes:
3/4 cup milk
1 1/2 tablespoons vinegar
1 cup flour
3 tablespoons sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 egg
2 tablespoons oil

Apple Topping:
2 tablespoons butter
2 apples, peeled, cored, and diced
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 cup pure maple syrup

To make apple topping: Add butter, apples, brown sugar, and cinnamon to a saucepan. Cook over medium heat for 3-5 minutes, until the apples are soft. Stir in syrup. Serve over warm pancakes.

To make pancakes: Preheat skillet or griddle.

Whisk together milk and vinegar; let sit for 5 minutes.

While milk is curdling, whisk together flour, sugar, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.

Whisk the egg and oil into the milk mixture. Mix the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients; stir until combined (do not over mix; there will be some lumps).

Spray skillet or griddle with cooking spray. Measure out 1/4 cup pancake batter (per pancake). Cook about 2-3 minutes (dependent on your griddle) until bubbles form and edges start to look dry. Use a spatula to flip; cook for another 1-2 minutes. Serve warm with apple topping.

Makes about 12 – 4″ pancakes

Chocolate Zucchini Doughnuts

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Yay for finally getting back into the swing of things! I didn’t realize until I looked at the date of my last post how much time had gone by since posting about my desire to restart our food blog. Great timing on my part, since we have a new baby due any week now, but at least it is giving me a chance to work on something and still keep my feet up.

Anybody out there have zucchini in their garden? If so, then you know that zucchini plants can produce a huge amount that you can’t seem to give away fast enough. If not, learn a lesson from me: if you don’t want zucchini coming out of your ears, then don’t plant even one plant!

In the last month or so I have tried 5 new zucchini recipes along with the tried and true ones I’ve baked in years past. After harvesting 3 large and 1 medium green zucchini from our garden yesterday I had a desire this morning to try one of the new recipes. A little tweaking here and there and we had doughnuts for a yummy afternoon snack!

I really didn’t make many changes to the recipe, it was more of how I formed the doughnuts. I didn’t have a doughnut pan and didn’t want to deal with making a bunch of foil contraptions to use in a muffin tin so I just piped round circles (and a few bar shapes) onto the baking sheets. They aren’t much to look at when they are in that form (be thankful that I spared you the pictures because you may have been less interested in making them).

The only thing that surprised me was that they stayed fairly flat. My baked doughnut looked more like a regular doughnut cut in half. That may not have happened if they were in a doughnut pan because they would have fluffed up instead of spreading out. It didn’t change the taste, texture, or time it took to bake. It did make them softer though so instead of dipping them into the melted white chocolate icing I ended up drizzling it. And in honor of our soon to arrive baby girl, I added in just a bit of pink.

These are going to be a definite repeat at our house! We have to find something to use up all of that zucchini, right? Enjoy!

Chocolate Zucchini Doughnuts
Slightly Modified from: Inside Bru Crew Life

1/2 cup butter, softened
2/3 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup applesauce
1/3 cup buttermilk
2/3 cup vanilla yogurt
1 cup shredded zucchini
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups flour
1/2 cup cocoa powder
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 /2 cup miniature chocolate chips
1 1/4 cups white chocolate chips
1 teaspoon shortening

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Cream the butter and sugar until fluffy. Add in the applesauce, buttermilk, yogurt, zucchini, and salt and continue to cream.

Sift together the flour, cocoa powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking powder, and baking soda. Slowly add the dry mixture to the butter mixture. Stir in the miniature chocolate chips by hand; do not over mix.

Pour the batter into a large ziploc bag and cut off one corner. Pipe round doughnuts onto a baking sheet covered with silicone or parchment paper. (If using a doughnut pan, fill the cavities at least 3/4 full.)

Bake for 10-12 minutes. Let cool on pan for 2-3 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.

Place the white chocolate chips and shortening in a microwave safe bowl. Heat and stir in 30 second increments until chips are melted. If using other colors, make smaller batches of melted chocolate and add desired color. Drizzle doughnuts with white chocolate. Store in an air tight container.

Makes about 21 doughnuts (dependent on size and shape)

Egg Roll in a Bowl

After a very long hiatus I have decided to see if I can update our food blog more consistently. I have thought about it fleetingly over the past several months but with work it seems that there is already enough going on around here.

So, what is bringing you to do it now if your circumstances haven’t changed, you may be asking? It is purely a selfish reason. I am tired of having to go to multiple places to look for the recipes that I like and seem to be using often in my weekly menus.

I might not have pictures for some of these newer posts, at least not until I make the item again and decide to snap a photo of it, but at least these will serve as place markers for me especially for the purpose of why I am updating. Hopefully you’ll enjoy some of these recipes that we have found over the past year or more of being on a holiday from blogging. Enjoy!

Egg Roll in a Bowl
Source: Gluten Free Makeover

1 pound ground pork
1 medium onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, chopped
3 ribs celery, chopped
1 package coleslaw mix
1 teaspoon grated ginger
3-4 tablespoons Braggs liquid aminos
1-2 teaspoons rice vinegar (or white vinegar)

Cook the ground pork until done; remove from pan, leaving the drippings. Add onion, garlic, and celery to the pan and saute until nearly cooked through. Add the coleslaw mix and continue to cook about 15 minutes. Mix in the cooked ground pork. Add the ginger, Braggs, and vinegar. Allow to simmer for 5 to 10 minutes. Can be served over steamed rice or noodles.

Makes 4 servings

Toffee Crunch Cheesecake

Toffee Crunch Cheesecake Slice

 

I’m wishing I would have typed this post up right after I made this cheesecake because it looks so good and I can’t for the life of me find the recipe that I used. Not only can I not find the recipe, but all of my saved recipes were lost when our hard drive crashed so I’m pretty much out of luck. I guess that just means I’ll be forced to experiment with other recipes until I find this one!

 

Toffee Crunch Cheesecake

White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies

White Chocolate Chunk Macadamia Nut Cookies

 

White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies
Source: All Recipes

1 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup coarsely chopped macadamia nuts
1 cup white chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

In a large bowl, cream the butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar until smooth. Beat in the eggs, one at a time. Stir in vanilla and almond extracts.

Combine the flour, baking soda, and salt; gradually stir into the creamed mixture. Stir in the macadamia nuts and white chocolate chips.

Drop by teaspoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheets. Bake for 10 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on wire rack.

Makes about 4 dozen

Coconut Chocolate Chunk Blondies

Chocolate Coconut Bars

I already have a strong love affair with brownies. Put a pan of brownies in my kitchen and I will shave off little strips every time I walk by until the whole pan is gone in one day. Yep, one day.

Blondies aren’t quite on the same scale as brownies for me, but they are close. They tend to be richer and sweeter so I seem to be able to limit my consumption comparatively.

As blondies go, these are quite tasty. Enjoy!

Coconut Chocolate Chunk Blondies
Source: Brown-Eyed Baker

1 cup all-purpose flour
1/8 teaspoon salt
4 ounces unsalted butter, melted and cooled to room temperature
1 cup light brown sugar
1 large egg
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup sweetened flaked coconut
1 cup chocolate chips or chunks

Topping:
1 cup semisweet or bittersweet chocolate chips
1 teaspoon butter

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour an 8-inch square baking pan.

Combine the flour and salt; set aside.

Stir together the melted butter and brown sugar until smooth; beat in egg and vanilla extract until well blended.

Slowly beat in the flour mixture until blended, then stir in the coconut and chocolate chips.

Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and smooth even with a rubber spatula.

Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until set in the center but still soft. Do not overbake. Let the bars cool slightly before drizzling with chocolate, then cool completely before cutting into squares.

For the topping, combine the chocolate and butter in a small bowl and microwave in 30-second intervals until melted and smooth. Using a spoon, drizzle over the bars.

Wedding Sugar Cookies

Wedding Sugar Cookies

Bridal shower cookies! These were so fun to make!

I checked around a bit to get an idea of the different cookie designs that are out there for bridal showers. Writing on cookies is always a bit challenging but I think they turned out pretty decent. I know the person who I made them for was happy about them and that’s all that really matters, right? Enjoy!

Chocolate Peppermint Cookies

Chocolate Peppermint Cookies

I think I had enough peppermint this holiday season to last me for the whole year! Seeing as how I’m not the biggest fan of peppermint there was little chance that I was going to go crazy eating these before I got them to the fundraiser they were meant for. Maybe that’s one of the reasons why I chose them. Hmmmm . . .

One word of warning before you make them. I couldn’t find the peppermint baking chips anywhere. I mean, no where. As in not one single store. I ended up improvising and just crushing up candy canes. They worked pretty well, but one thing I found out was that if the candy cane in the cookie was close to the edge it baked out really crispy and almost clear like. And it make the cookies turn into really weird shapes. There were enough normal shapes that it worked out fine. Enjoy!

Chocolate Peppermint Cookies
Source: Mom on Timeout

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup unsweetened baking cocoa
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 egg, room temperature
2 tablespoons water
1/2 cup Andes Peppermint Crunch baking chips, plus more for sprinkling on top

Whisk together flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt. Set aside.

Cream sugars and butter together until light and fluffy. Add in egg, vanilla, and water and beat until well blended. Gradually stir in dry ingredients. Fold in baking chips.

Refrigerate dough for 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line cookie sheet with parchment paper or lightly grease. Scoop out rounded tablespoons of cookie dough onto prepared cookie sheet.

Bake for 7-8 minutes or until they are set. Do not over bake. Remove from oven, sprinkle with additional Andes chips if desired, and let cool on a rack. Store in an airtight container.

Makes about 2 dozen cookies