October 27, 2013

43*52 Pumpkin Lasagna

It's pumpkin time ;)

I'm always happy when I see the first pumpkins of the season around. 
And every year I'm looking for new recipes for what to make with all these pumpkins.
I browsed through tons of pumpkin lasagna recipes for this week's bake but in the end mixed them all up into one basic, easy vegetarian version.

Enjoy this week with another non-cake-bake!

Vegetarian Pumpkin Lasagna
Inspired by many different recipes

1 medium butternut pumpkin (or hokkaido)
1 onion, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
olive oil
500 g (17.5 oz) mashed/sieved tomatoes (passata)
basil or oregano, dried
salt and pepper
lasagna sheets
mozzarella, shredded
  • Peel pumpkin and remove seeds. Cut into smaller cubes.
  • Heat up olive oil in a pan, cook onion and garlic for about a minute. Add pumpkin and sautĂ©e for about 5 minutes, stir frequently. Add passata, season to taste and let cook until pumpkin is almost tender.
  • Using a spoon or ladle, put a bit of the tomato sauce (without pumpkin) on the bottom of a casserole dish/pan. Lay out lasagna sheets on top. Top with some pumpkin-tomato-sauce, lasagna sheets, pumpkin-tomato-sauce again, lasagna sheets and end with a bit of tomato sauce. Sprinkle shredded mozzarella over top and bake at 200°C (390°F) for about 25-30 minutes.
(sorry, just a bad iphone shot this week...)
My modifications:
None. This is my interpretation of an easy and quick pumpkin lasagna.
You can of course also add minced meat and/or a bechamel sauce but I didn't miss either.

The taste:
Great. Another pumpkin recipe that I will definitely make again.

What is your favorite pumpkin recipe?

October 20, 2013

42*52 Sweet Potato Banana Bread

I know. Bananas again. Sorry.

But sweet potatoes! Not much with sweet potatoes on this blog up to now.

So let's get straight to the recipe, shall we?

Sweet Potato Banana Bread
From Just A Pinch 

2 over-ripe bananas, mashed
2 medium sweet potatoes, cooked and mashed
150 g (3/4 cup) light brown sugar
2 tablespoons oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 eggs
125 g (1 cup) flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • Preheat oven to 180°C (350°F).
  • Combine bananas, sweet potatoes, brown sugar, oil, vanilla, and eggs.
  • In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking soda, baking powder, and cinnamon. Stir into the banana mixture until just combined.
  • Pour into prepared loaf pan and bake for 40-45 minutes.

My modifications:

The taste:
Good. But something went wrong when I made it. I think the egg wasn't distributed well enough so that the bottom part of each piece tasted like (and had the texture of) an omelet. Which wasn't so nice, as you might be able to imagine. But otherwise it tasted like fall. And I like fall.

What cake reminds you of fall the most?

October 13, 2013

41*52 Banana-Cranberry-Cake

I had just bough dried cranberries. For nothing in particular.

Then I had to think about what kind of cake the hubby could take to work for his birthday.
And the cranberries came to mind again.
Good that there were some very ripe bananas laying around as well.

Adapted slightly from Baking By Flavor via Technicolor Kitchen

280 g (2 cups) flour
1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teapsoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
80 g (3/4 cup) dried cranberries, chopped if too large
140 g (1 stick plus 2 tablespoons) butter, room temperature
200 g (1 cup) sugar
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3 ripe bananas, mashed
70 g (1/4 cup) sour cream or yogurt
  • Preheat oven to 190°C (375°F). 
  • Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, nutmeg, and cinnamon in a medium bowl. In a small bowl, toss cranberries with 1 teaspoon of the flour mix. Mix mashed bananas with sour cream.
  • Cream butter with the sugar for about 2 minutes. Beat in eggs one at a time, add vanilla.
  • Alternately add flour mix and banana mix. Add cranberries.
  • Pour into prepared loaf pan and bake for about 55 minutes.
  • Let cool. Dust with powdered sugar if you want.
My modifications:
The original recipe calls for 1 stick butter and 2 tablespoons shortening. Since I never have shortening in the house, I only used butter.

The taste:
Good. But somehow not very special. I don't know - I just felt like something is missing or even that the banana-cranberry combo is not my favorite one. So I probably won't make it again. But it's not bad or anything - so please do try it! Maybe you'll love it.

What is your favorite baking recipe using dried cranberries?

October 6, 2013

40*52 (One of the best) Chocolate Cake(s)

It was my last week at job no1. And my birthday was coming up.

So I decided to make small cakes as a farewell gift and as a birthday cake advance.

Little did I know that I would pick a recipe that will now be my absolute goto chocolate cake recipe. Seriously - it is so easy, so quick, and so absolutely delish. Try it.

(One of the best) Chocolate Cake(s)

250 g (9 oz) dark chocolate
210 g (7.5 oz) butter
250 g (9 oz) powdered sugar
5 eggs
75 g (2.5 oz) ground almonds

200 g (7 oz) dark chocolate
50 ml (2 fl oz) milk
75 g (2.5 oz) butter
Whisky (optional)
  • Preheat oven to 160°C (325°F).
  • Melt chocolate, butter, and sugar in a bain-marie. Stir until melted, cool slightly. Beat in the eggs, then fold in ground almonds.
  • Pour into prepared cake or springform pan and bake for about 45 minutes, until the center is just set. Let cool in pan.
  • For the glaze, melt chocolate, milk, and butter in a bain-marie. Stir in whisky, if desired.
  • Let cool until it thickened a bit, remove cake from pan, and pour glaze over top of cake.

My modifications:
I used only half of the ingredients (because I didn't have that much chocolate at hand and because I thought it would be enough for our small team) but I used 3 eggs.
I also used small paper cake pans because I think they are cute and perfect if you want to hand out cake as small presents. From half the amount of batter I got 6 small cakes which was the perfect amount for the occassion.
Oh, and I did bake these small cakes for 40 minutes because I just thought they didn't look done before.
Next time I would only leave it in the oven a bit longer (with the door open) when it's done because it did fall together a bit (like a soufflé).

The taste:
Oh. My. So so so good! Especially with the very moist center.
As I said - this will be my number 1 chocolate cake recipe from now on.

Have you found a recipe lately that will be your number 1 from now on?