Peanut Butter and Banana Dog Biscuits

I am not a dog person.  I don’t know if I missed out on the dog-loving gene or what.  I don’t like little ones because they are yappy and annoying.  I don’t like big ones because they are scary and intimidating.  There’s no middle ground here for me! Haha!

Zack loves dogs.  His parents have a chocolate lab and my aunt and uncle have a cocker spaniel.  I’m the type of crazy person that gives pets Christmas gifts.

I found a recipe for some dog biscuits and thought that would be perfect for a little gift.

My aunt and uncle’s dog is named Gordy and Zack’s parents dog is named River, so I made some R and G shaped cookies!

Gordy got his cookies last weekend and I was told that he loves them!  River gets his on Christmas.  I hope he likes his too.

Pets need Christmas love, too!

Peanut Butter and Banana Dog Biscuits

– 1 egg

– 1/3 c peanut butter

– 1/2 c mashed banana

– 1 T honey

– 1 c whole wheat flour

– 1/4 c wheat germ

– 1/4 c old fashioned oats

– 1 egg white, lightly beaten, for brushing

Preheat oven to 300 degrees.  Lightly grease a baking sheet.

In a medium bowl, stir together the egg, peanut butter, banana, and honey.  STir in the flour, wheat germ and oats.

Turn dough onto a floured surface and roll to 1/4″ thickness.  Using a cookie cutter, cut into desired shapes and place on prepared baking sheet.  Brush with egg white.

Bake until dried and golden brown, about 25-30 minutes, depending on size.  Remove from oven and cool on a wire rack.

Mom’s Birthday – 2 Cakes!

Yesterday was my mom’s birthday.  Her fiance, his mom, Zack and I took her out to dinner to celebrate.  I, of course, decided to make her a cake.

I had been so excited about making this cake and just knew it was going to turn out great, because it combined two of her very favorite flavors – peanut butter and banana.

I baked the cake part in the morning and it turned out great.  Then, I caramelized some bananas and put them in the middle of the cake as a filling. I made the peanut butter frosting… and that is when disaster struck.  The first batch I made, I added way too much milk.  It started running off of the cake.  I panicked a little, but scraped that off as best as I could and then made a new, much thicker batch.  It did not go on great, but it looked okay, so I stuck it in the fridge to crust up a little, so that I could smooth out the icing.

Well, when I tried to smooth it out, the icing started rippling.  It was the ugliest cake I had ever made… I knew that there was no way that I was taking that cake to a public restaurant, especially for someone’s birthday as important as my mom.

I looked at the clock and realized we had to leave for the dinner in less than an hour.  I knew I didn’t have time to make another full two-layer cake.  Luckily, I had a recipe for a sweet potato crumb cake that I had been wanting to try that didn’t take that long.  I decided to make that for her (she loves sweet potatoes, too).  It came out of the oven just in time. I slipped it into a casserole carrier straight from the oven and off we went to the restaurant.

Mom, and everyone else at the dinner, really liked the cake.  I was really upset about the first cake, but at least I was still able to make mom a cake.

Happy Birthday to the best mom ever!

I am going to include the recipe for the peanut butter/banana cake because it was my own fault that it didn’t work out.  I added too much (and then too little) milk to the icing!

Here’s a shot of the caramelized bananas.

See?  It is SO embarrassing.  I’ve never made such a bad cake.  Compare this to Mermaid Birthday Cake or Beer Cake or even Fall cake.  I didn’t even want to put a picture of it on here, but I know everyone will be supportive.

Peanut Butter Banana Passion Cake

Yield: 12 servings

Cake:

– 4 T butter, softened

– 1/4 c creamy peanut butter

– 1 1/2 c packed brown sugar

– 2 eggs

– 1/2 c warm water

– 1 c buttermilk

– 1/4 t vanilla extract

– 2 c AP flour

– 1 t salt

– 1 t baking soda

Caramelized bananas:

– 3 or 4 medium bananas, cut into coin shapes

– 1/4 c granulated sugar

Frosting:

Yield: 2 1/2 c

– 1/3 c creamy peanut butter

– 2 c confectioners’ sugar

– 1 t vanilla extract

– 2 t honey

– 4-5 T milk

Make the cake:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Lightly grease and flour 2 (9-inch) round cake pans and set aside.

In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream the butter, peanut butter, and sugar until light and fluffy.  Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.

Combine the water, buttermilk, and vanilla.  In a separate bowl, combine the flour, salt, and baking soda.  Alternately add the buttermilk mixture and flour mixture to the peanut butter mixture, beginning and ending with the buttermilk.  Mix well 1 minute.

Pour the batter evenly into the prepared pans, then remove, and cool completely on wire racks.

Make the caramelized bananas:

Heat a well greased skillet over medium heat.

Put the sugar into a bowl or onto a plate and thoroughly cover the banana coins with it.  Place into skillet and cook until caramelization occurs, about 5 minutes.  Then flip and cook until the other side is done, about 1 minute.  Place on the bottom tier of your leveled cake. Maybe even have a bowl-like cut into the cake.

Make the frosting:

Combine the peanut butter, sugar, extract, and honey in the bowl of an electric mixer on low speed.  When well combined, add just enough milk to make an acceptable spreading consistency.  For me, 5 T was too much and 3 T was too little!

Here’s the yummy cake that I was really pleased with.  Not the typical birthday cake, but it still made Mom happy.

Sweet Potato Crumb Cake

Cake:

– 1/2 c butter

– 1 c brown sugar

– 3/4 c sweet potato, boiled and mashed

– 2 eggs

– 1 t vanilla

– 2 t cinnamon

– 1/4 t ginger

– 1/4 t nutmeg

– 2 t baking powder

– 1/2 t salt

– 1 1/2 c flour

– 1/2 c oatmeal

– 1 c mini marshmallows

Topping:

– 1/2 c oatmeal

– 1/4 c brown sugar

– 1 t cinnamon

– 2 T melted butter

– 1 T flour

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Combine all topping ingredients, mix well and set aside.

Over low heat, melt butter in a small skillet until browned, about 5-7 minutes.  Let cool for 2 minutes and pour into a medium bowl.  Add brown sugar, mashed sweet potato, vanilla, cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg, stir well until incorporated.  Beat eggs in, separately, making sure to mix well after each addition.

Mix flour, baking powder, and salt, adding the 1/2 c oatmeal after the dry ingredients are mixed.  Slowly add the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients, mixing well.

In a greased 9×13 baking pan, evenly spread 1/2 the batter over the bottom.  Smear marshmallows over the batter and spread the other 1/2 of the batter over the marshmallows.  Sprinkle the oatmeal crumble topping and bake for about 25 minutes.  Let cool before serving.

Chocolate Banana Muffins

Is anyone else out there as obsessed with bananas as I am?  I have to eat one everyday.  It’s a compulsion.  I should be glad that I am addicted to something healthy for me instead of something horrible like cigarettes, though.

When I saw this recipe, I knew I had to try it out.  Bananas + chocolate chips FOR BREAKFAST?!  I will do whatever I can to sneak dessert-type foods into regular meals.  Hehe.

Everyone that tasted these really liked them, so I definitely recommend trying them out (especially if you’re a banana addict like me!).

They were not very time consuming and make a great on-the-go breakfast.

The recipe says it makes two dozen, but I didn’t get quite get 2 dozen out of it – I only got 21.  What an odd number.  I never quite yield exactly what a recipe calls for, though.

Chocolate Banana Muffins

Prep: 25 minutes.  Bake: 15 minutes + cooling.  Yield: 2 dozen.

– 1/2 cup butter, softened

– 1/2 cup sugar

– 1/2 cup packed brown sugar

– 2 eggs

– 1 1/2 cups mashed ripe bananas (about 3 large)

– 3 teaspoons vanilla extract

– 1 cup chopped walnuts (optional)

– 1 cup (6 oz) semisweet chocolate chips

In a bowl, cream the butter and sugar.  Beat in eggs, banana, and vanilla.  Combine flour and baking soda and add to creamed mixture just until combined.  Stir in the walnuts and chocolate chips.  Fill greased or paper-lined muffin cups half full.

Bake at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.  Cool for 5 minutes before removing from pans to wire rack to cool completely.

Two Ingredient Nondairy Milkshake

I’m lactose-intolerant like so many people of the world.  Unfortunately, this means no milkshakes.  I’ve found ways around other milk products (I use vanilla flavored almond milk with my cereal), but I hadn’t found a good alternative to ice cream to use in milkshakes.

My friend Brooke knows about my obsession with peanut butter and bananas, so she told me how she makes milkshakes.  What you see in the above picture is literally everything that you need (minus the blender).

I’d frozen bananas for other uses before, but never to use as the ice cream in a milkshake.  When bananas are blended after being frozen, they have a very similar consistency to ice cream.

 

To make these delicious milkshakes, slice up bananas thinly and lay them on a plate in a single layer and pop it in the freezer for a couple of hours.  When they are frozen solid, put them in the blender with a gob of peanut butter (no measuring required, just a gob).

Blend until milkshake-y.  That’s it.  If they are too thick, you can add a little milk to thin the consistency (unless you’re lactose intolerant like me!).

I am so happy that I learned about these! Such a wonderful and simple dessert.



“Healthy” Banana Pudding

Okay, okay, okay…It’s not actually healthy, it’s just HEALTHIER.

I have become obsessed with bananas.  This is no exaggeration.  Zack is in awe at home much I eat bananas.  I eat one everyday (and dip it in peanut butter).  I also have frozen ones that are dipped in dark chocolate (and only 130 calories!) http://www.dianasbananas.com/ check out their website.  I highly recommend them.

Zack’s mom found this recipe in a magazine and shared it with me.  It supposedly cuts down calories from ~800 a serving to ~290 a serving.  I personally took this as a cue for me to eat 3 servings…but that’s another story 😉

I bought this dish especially to make the pudding in, but it looks so cute! I’m glad I did.

Roasted Banana Pudding

5 ripe unpeeled medium bananas (about 2 lbs)

2 cups skim milk

⅔ cup sugar, divided

2 tablespoons cornstarch

¼ tsp salt

2 large eggs

1 tablespoon butter

2 tsp vanilla extract

1 (12 oz) container frozen fat-free whipped topping, thawed and divided

45 vanilla wafers, divided

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Place bananas on a jelly roll pan coated with parchment paper. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. Remove 3 bananas, cool completely. Peel and cut into ½ inch thick slices. Bake the remaining two bananas at 350 degrees for an additional 20 minutes. Carefully peel and place the 2 bananas in a small bowl and mash with a fork until smooth.

Combine milk and ⅓ cup sugar in a saucepan over medium high heat. Bring to a simmer (do not boil).

Combine remaining ⅓ cup sugar, cornstarch, salt, and eggs in a medium bowl; stir well with a whisk. Gradually add hot milk mixture to sugar mixture, stirring constantly with a whisk. Return milk mixture to pan. Cook over medium heat until thick and bubbly (about 3 minutes), stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Add mashed bananas, butter, and vanilla, stirring until butter melts. Place pan in large ice-filled bowl for 15 minutes or until mixture comes to room temperature, stirring occasionally. Fold half of the whipped topping into pudding.

Spread 1 cup custard evenly over the bottom of an 11 x 7 inch baking dish. Top with 20 vanilla wafers and half of the banana slices. Spoon half of remaining custard over banana slices. Repeat procedure with 20 wafers, banana slices, and custard. Spread remaining half of whipped topping evenly over top. Refrigerate 1 hour or until chilled.

 

Happy baking, everyone! 🙂