Category Archives: snacks

World’s Richest Banana Bread

I am not going to try to hoodwink you into thinking this banana bread is healthy. There are plenty of “healthy” banana bread recipes out there and this is not one of them. This is a buttery, rich, “treat-yourself-and-don’t-feel-guilty” kind of banana bread.

We’ve all tried lots and lots of banana bread recipes because we all find ourselves with brown bananas now and again. Well, this one is the best I have ever made. The best thing about this recipe? You probably already have it in your own house. I dug it out of Mark Bittman’s cooking bible How to Cook Everything and it remains my favorite recipe in the book of well over a thousand.


Make Ahead and Make it Easy
I oftentimes will make 2 loaves and freeze one wrapped in foil. When we have unexpected company or a hankering for something really sinful (such as banana bread french toast) I’ll take it out to thaw the night before and it’s as good as fresh in the morning.
    • 8 Tbs (1 stick) butter, softened
    • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
    • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
    • 1 tsp salt
    • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
    • 3/4 cup sugar
    • 2 eggs
    • 3 very ripe bananas, mashed with a fork
    • 2 tsp vanilla extract
    • 1/2 cup walnuts, chopped
    • 1/2 cup grated dried unsweetened coconut (if you can’t find unsweetened just lessen the sugar by a couple of Tbs)

How to make it

  1. Heat oven to 350 and grease a 9×5 bread pan
  2. Whisk together flours, salt, baking powder, and sugar.
  3. In a separate bowl cream together the butter and the sugar and then add the bananas. Mix well.
  4. Stir the banana mixture into the dry ingredients. Careful not to overmix!
  5. Add the vanilla, nuts, and coconut.
  6. Bake for 50-55 minutes.

From How to Cook Everything by Mark Bittman


“Get Your Kids to Eat Spinach” Fritters


For those of you who grew up eating spinach out of a frozen box (or worse, out of a can), I am sorry.  And if you have not yet discovered that spinach can be good, I am really sorry.  Or maybe you are just looking for a way to get your little rugrats to ingest something green.
I got a variation of this recipe from my local CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) farmers and altered it a bit.  The basic idea was the same (lots and lots of iron, calcium, and vitamins from the spinach and protein from the egg) but I added walnuts for Omega 3s and copper (who’d have thunk!?).
If your kids wont eat them, give ’em a side of ketchup.  Any kid that wont eat food served with ketchup should probably have their head examined.


Make Ahead and Make it Easy

 These do take a bit of time since you’ll need to cook them up in batches.  But they are easy and require very few dishes- just a food processor, a pan, and a spatula.  They are great at room temperature so I make them early and serve as an appetizer, or pack them up as lunch (yes, with ketchup) for the little one to take to school.  Me? I like them served straight up with a sprinkle of coarse salt.
After eating a few of these babies you can veg out all day and do nothing- guilt-free.  That’s how healthy they are.
  • 3/4   cup breadcrumbs, more as needed
  • 4 cups spinach
  • 4  scallions, chopped or 3 Tbs onion, chopped
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup walnuts
  • oil

How to make it

  1. Place the breadcrumbs and scallions or onions in the food processor and pulse until well mixed.
  2. While the processor is running, alternate between adding a couple handfuls of spinach and an egg untill all the spinach and eggs are used up.  You may need to stop and stir a couple of times- it can take a while for all the spinach to get really well blended up.
  3. Add walnuts and salt while food processor is running.  When the mixture is very thick and sticky you are ready to go.  If it is runny at all add more breadcrumbs.
  4. Coat a large skillet with olive oil and heat over LOW heat.
  5. The mixture will be very sticky and will not form nice balls or patties.  Roll it into golf-ball sized amoebas and throw enough in the skillet to leave 2 inches between them
  6. When fritters are brown underneath, flip ’em over, and press down with your spatula.  That’ll give you that nice “I know how to make a patty” shape.  Cook until brown on both sides.