Tagged: sweet

Grapefruit Olive Oil Cake & an Explanation or Two

grapefruit olive oil pound cakes // batch-22

Okay, Internet. This is it. This is me getting back in the blogging game after a 6 month hiatus.

Why did I leave?

It wasn’t you, internet, it was me!

Back in September/October, I started a new job(ish). I was promoted and moved to a different department within the same company. Starting a new job, even though this one involved working with the people I’ve known and enjoyed working with for the past year, was overwhelming. It took me quite a while to “catch up” and get in the groove. This new job is also a lot more creative and less administrative than my old one. That took some adjusting, too.

grapefruit olive oil pound cake ingredients // batch-22

That, combined with the fact that I spent Dec-February training for a marathon meant Batch-22, and cooking in general took a backseat to running, thinking about running, stretching and sleeping. There were a lot of stir-fries, friends. More than I’m proud of.

grapefruit olive oil pound cake zest // batch-22

Why am I back?

Because I missed blogging and you! Batch-22 motivates me to try new recipes and practice taking pretty pictures. It reminds me that I love food and cooking and making tasty things for my friends, coworkers, and roommates. It also forces me to make something other than stir-fry for dinner.

grapefruit olive oil pound cake mix  // batch-22So I’m back! But this won’t be the same old Batch-22. I want to focus things up a bit more. There will be more cooking than baking and I’ll be using more whole foods and simple ingredients.  And, to start off, I’ll be posting just twice a month, instead of every week. Finally, I’ll be focusing in on budget-friendly recipes. Ones that are delicious, not too fussy, and make a lot of leftovers.

Sound good? Here goes.

grapefruit olive oil pound cake  // batch-22

Grapefruit Olive Oil Pound Cake

The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook by Deb Perelman

For the cake:

  • butter for the pan
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (I used Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-Free Flour)
  • zest of 2 large grapefruits
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 2 large eggs at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons grapefruit juice
  • 1/3 cups non-fat, plain Greek yogurt

For the Syrup:

  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup grapefruit juice

For the glaze:

  • 1 cup confectioner’s sugar
  • 2 tablespoons grapefruit juice
  • a pinch of salt

Start on the cake. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Butter and flour a 9×5″ loaf pan.

Whisk the sugar and grapefruit zest in a large bowl; be sure to bruise the zest. Whisk in the oil and one egg at a time. Mix until completely combined.

Sift together the dry ingredients in a separate bowl.  Then, in a liquid measuring cup, combine the yogurt and grapefruit juice (just 2 tablespoons). Add the yogurt/grapefruit juice concoction to the sugar, zest, and eggs. Then fold in the dry ingredients. Mix until smooth.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Smooth out the top and tap the pan against the counter to burst any air bubbles. Bake for 45-60 minutes until a cake tester comes out clean.

While the cake begins to cool, make the syrup by dissolving 2 tablespoons of sugar  in 1/3 cup of grapefruit in a saucepan over low heat. While the cake is still warm, use a spoon or brush to spread the syrup over the cake.

While the cake cools and absorbs the syrup, make the glaze. Combine the powdered sugar, salt, and remaining grapefruit syrup in a small bowl. Pour the glaze over the completely cooled cake. Slice and serve!

 

 

cinnamon buns

cinnamon buns / batch-22

Apologies for the radio silence over the since the beet pasta. Actually, I’m not sorry. I’ve been out living life. The past three weekends I have been gallivanting around. FIrst to New Jersey to visit my grandmother and meet a tiny adorable kitten, then to visit my mom in Connecticut, and finally out to Western Massachusetts where H and I made a whole bunch of delicious foods.

cinnamon buns / batch-22

Seriously. A whole bunch. I’m talking cream of cauliflower soup, honey-oatmeal bread, butternut squash risotto, and braised brussels sprouts. Oh, and there’s also the tomato-apple chutney,curried apple chutney, and apple sauce — all of which were canned.

cinnamon buns / batch-22

cinnamon buns / batch-22

But I think my favorite bit of cookery from last weekend was these cinnamon buns. They’re a sugary, buttery, gift from heaven slash a Betty Crocker cookbook from the early eighties.

cinnamon buns / batch-22

cinnamon buns / batch-22

Perhaps the most magical bit of this (at least to me) is that they are full-gluten pastries. Yup, I’m back on (or off?) the wagon. After 4 years of gluten-abstinence and a few weeks of careful reintroduction, I feel pretty confident saying that my gluten allergy is a thing of the past. Huzzah!

cinnamon buns / batch-22

Now on to the recipe.

Cinnamon Rolls

Recipe from Betty Crocker, circa 1981

For the dough:

  • 1 package active dry yeast
  • 1/2 cup warm water (105 – 115 degrees)
  • 1/2 cup luke warm milk (scalded then cooled)
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup butter, softened
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour

For the cinnamony innards:

  • 1/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup cinnamon

For the glaze:

  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons milk

Dissolve yeast in warm water. Add the dry dough ingredients into the bowl of a stand mixer and stir until combined. Add the milk, egg. and butter to the bowl, and beat until a smooth ball of dough forms.

Turn dough onto a well-floured surface and knead for five minutes, until it becomes smooth and elastic. Toss in a greased bowl, turn the greased side up, cover with a clean cloth and place the bowl in a warm sunny spot to rise. Let the dough ruse for 1 1/2 – 2 hours, until it doubles in volume.

When the dough has almost finished rising, line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Combine sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl.

Divide the risen dough in two. Roll half the dough into a long, thin rectangle (Betty suggests 15″ x 9″) and spread butter over the entire surface. Sprinkle half the cinnamon sugar over the buttered dough, leaving about a 1/4 inch clear on all sides.

Beginning on the long edge, roll the dough into a dight log and slice into 1″ slices. Repeat with the second half of the dough. Place the slices cut side down on the parchment paper, cover and let rise for another 30-40 minutes until the rolls double in size. Bake in the oven for 30 minutes, remove and let cool.

In a medium bowl, blend milk and powdered sugar until smooth. Smother cooled rolls in glaze, devour immediately.

cinnamon buns / batch-22 

apple-cornmeal pancakes

cornmeal-apple pancakes // batch-22

These are the pancakes I wanted to make you last year on Mountain Day. But it took me by surprise! This year, though, this year I’m a bit psychic. I came THIS CLOSE to posting this recipe yesterday, but a little voice inside of my said, “No. Wait.”

And low and behold, today is Mountain Day!

cornmeal-apple pancakes // batch-22

For those of you not in the know, Mountain Day is a magical wonderful surprise that comes once a year to students at Smith College (and select other New England colleges). The president surprises us at 7am on a random fall day by ringing the college bells and cancelling ALL CLASSES.

Yeah. It’s amazing. Smithies celebrate by sleeping in and going apple picking with their friends. Then they spend the afternoon baking apple pies and cooking apple sauce. They gorge themselves on apples until they feel slightly ill (or was that just me?)

cornmeal-apple pancakes // batch-22

Sadly, there is not mountain day in the real world. This morning, I’m headed off to work. Though I will probably eat farmer’s market apples for lunch and whip up a batch of these tasty cornmeal apple pancakes for dinner.

Happy Mountain Day, Smithies! And happy apple-cornmeal pancake day to the rest of you!

cornmeal-apple pancakes // batch-22

Apple-Cornmeal Pancakes

Serves 4 

  • 1 1/2 cups (gluten-free) flour
  • 1 1/2 cups cornmeal
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons canola oil or melted butter
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 2 cups milk (I used unsweetened vanilla almond milk)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 1/2 cups+ diced apple (I used honey crisp)

In a large mixing bowl, combine dry ingredients. In a small bowl, combine wet ingredients and pour into the dry ingredients. Mix well to break up any lumps of flour.

Pour batter by quarter cups into a hot, oiled skillet or griddle. Top each pancake with apples, and flip when bubbles form in the batter. Remove from the skillet, top with butter and copious amounts of maple syrup. Serve immediately. Indulge.

cornmeal-apple pancakes // batch-22

lemon-blueberry blondies

lemon-blueberry blondies // batch-22

Even though I’m a 24-year-old, fully employed, college graduate living on my own in The Big City, I rarely think of myself as an adult. Sure, I have health insurance,  a 401K, and a disgustingly large rent bill, but  I can’t fold a fitted sheet to save my life. What’s more, I frequently dispatch emails in ALL CAPS, and  eat fro-yo for dinner more often than I’d really care to admit.

See? Not an adult.

lemon-blueberry blondies // batch-22

Another trait that I feel brands me as  a perma-child is my inability to neatly slice and remove brownies, blondies, and the like from a pan. I’m pretty much physically incapable of serving anyone an aesthetically pleasing bar. This may have something to do with the fact that I tend to like my brownies ever so slightly undercooked (CHILD!!) but it’s a bit disheartening as a food blogger to actually cook something all the way through and try to serve it up in an aesthetically pleasing manner only to wind up with a plate full of mushy squares.

Not cute.

lemon-blueberry blondies // batch-22

All this is to say, these blondies are delicious. And I’m sure that someone who is not me could manage to get them out of a pan with style and grace.

Sigh. Or you could just eat them straight from the pan. Not that I did that.

(I totally did.)

lemon-blueberry blondies // batch-22Lemon-Blueberry Blondies

adapted from Cookies and Cups, yields 20-25 blondies

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs (I used flax eggs, 2 tablespoons flaxmeal + 6 tablespoons warm water)
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose gluten-free flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/2 cup chopped almonds
  • 10 oz jar lemon curd
  • blueberry jam

Preheat oven to 325° F, line a 9×9 inch pan with foil and grease well.

In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar with a electric hand mixer until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes. Beat in eggs and vanilla, then add the dry ingredients (reserving nuts). Mix until combined and fold in the almonds and pecans.

Spread half the dough along the bottom on the prepared pan. Use a tablespoon to dollop lemon curd evenly over top. Cover with remaining dough and top with several tablespoons of jam. Use a knife to swirl the dough, lemon curd, and jam together.

Bake for 30-35 minutes until the dough sets. Edges should be golden brown. Be sure not to over-bake. Cut into squares and serve.

lemon-blueberry blondies // batch-22

s’mores cookies

s'mores cookies // batch-22

These cookies have been on my mind for a while now. It’s summer and summer means dining al fresco whether you’re roasting (veggie) burgers on the grill or charring corn in the embers of a bonfire. Basically, summer means there are all sorts of opportunities to roast marshmallows and sandwich them between chocolate and graham crackers.

s'mores cookies // batch-22

Now, I try not to get all “woe is me” about my gluten allergy, because it’s honestly not that bad. Truthfully, I don’t think about it much at all these days. Most of the cooking I do for myself is naturally gluten-free and adapting recipes has basically become second nature over the last five (!?!) years. But there are a few foods that you just can’t replicate with gluten-free flours — bagels and graham crackers.

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So, I’ve been without my beloved s’mores for many, many years. Marshmallow smooshed between two pieces of chocolate, while delicious, just didn’t cut it. Then these cookies came to me in a dream. Well, not really. My friend Kelly brought in some s’mores cupcakes to work and I was like, “S’MORES COOKIES!”

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That was six or seven months ago. Maybe even longer. But what can I say? Good things come to those who wait. And these cookies? Yeah. They’re GOOD.

s'mores cookies // batch-22

S’mores Cookies

yields 2 dozen cookies

  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1/4 cups gluten-free flour (I used Bob’s Redmill)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 cup marshmallows, chopped into bite-sized pieces (I used vegan ones)

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

In a large mixing bowl, combine butter and sugar and mix until light and creamy. Stir in vanilla, honey, and eggs. Mix well.

In a separate bowl, sift together flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet, and stir until blended. Fold in the chocolate chips and marshmallows.

Drop dough by tablespoonfuls onto the prepared baking sheets. Bake for 10-12 minutes until golden brown and cooked through. Remove from oven and allow to cool for five minutes before transferring to a wire rack.

peaches and (coconut) cream pops

peach and coconut cream popsicles // batch-22

You guys. I think I’m starting to walk down the dangerous path of popsicle addiction. They’re everywhere! Tracy from Shutterbean is the queen of boozy popsicles as far as I’m concerned. And these vegan espresso fudgesicles on Take a Megabite? I just die.

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peach and coconut cream popsicles // batch-22

I think I’m going to have to invest in a heavy duty  popsicle mold like this one. What do you think? Any recommendations? I just know my life will be approximately a million times better once I can make 10 pops at a time instead of a measly 4. Summer’s here for at least another month — and let’s be real, New York won’t cool off until late September…if not early October. So it’s a pretty solid investment, right? Right.

peach and coconut cream popsicles // batch-22

Today’s popsicles are a creamy, dreamy delight, if I do say so myself. I tossed peeled and sliced peaches with olive oil and sugar and stuck them under the broiler. They got all gooey and fragrant in no time and my apartment didn’t become a hot box. It was a win-win! Next, blended the peaches and layered them with coconut milk in the molds. So simple, yet so delicious. So indulgent, and yet totally guilt-free.

There’s nothing better than peaches and (coconut) cream at the end of July.

peach and coconut cream popsicles // batch-22

Peaches and (Coconut) Cream Pops

adapted from Joy the Baker

makes 10-12 popsicles

  • 1 pound fresh peaches, pealed and chopped
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 1 (15 ounce) can whole fat coconut milk
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Place peaches on baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with 1 tablespoon of sugar. Place in the oven, under the broiler until blistered and fragrant (about 10 minutes.)  Remove from the oven and spoon the peaches into the bowl of a food processor fitted with a blade attachment and blend until smooth.

In a small bowl combine coconut milk, remaining sugar, and vanilla extract. Mix well.

Spoon the peach mixture into the bottom of each popsicle mold. Pour coconut milk over top into each mold, until 2/3  full. Spoon more peaches into each mold and add more milk until full.

Place popsicle mold lids over top and freeze for 6 hours or overnight.

(If you, like me, have a tiny popsicle mold, store leftover ingredients in the fridge and make a second batch later in the week.)

chocolate zucchini bread

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True confession: I made this bread (cake?) a few weeks ago when we weren’t in the middle of a heat wave. I totally (TOTALLY) understand if you don’t feel up to turning on your oven this week. Just tuck this little gem of a recipe away (or pin it!) for later. You’ll be glad you did, I promise.

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Another true confession: I can never remember how to spell ‘zucchini’without spell check. Are there two ‘c’s  or two ‘n’s? Both? Neither? Uggah. I have trouble with ‘surprise,’ too. That first ‘r’ throws me for a loop every time.

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Anyway, here’s a recipe for chocolate zucchini bread. It would be really killer with chocolate chips tossed in. Of course, that might tip it into the cake territory. But who am I to judge if you still eat it for breakfast? I’m just a girl who can’t spell ‘zucchini’ to save her life.

Chocolate Zucchini Bread

Lightly adapted from Smitten Kitchen

Yields 2 loaves

  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup olive oil
  • 1 3/4 cups sugar
  • 2 cups grated zucchini
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 3 cups all-purpose, gluten-free flour (I used Bob’s Red Mill)
  • 3 tablespoons coco powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup chocolate chips (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F, grease and flour two 8×4 inch loaf pans.

In a large bowl, whisk the eggs until bright and smooth. Mix in  olive oil, sugar, zucchini and vanilla. In a separate bowl, combine flour, coco powder,  baking soda, baking powder and salt. Add dry ingredients to wet and mix to combine. Fold in chocolate chips, if using.

Divide the batter into prepared pans and bake for 60 minutes, until  cooked through.