Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Banana Orange Cake

Yesterday, I decided to use all my over ripe bananas by making a Banana bread. But my son said he would like an Orange cake instead. So I decided to mix both. My sister had highly recommended a Banana cake recipe which she forwarded me along with tons of positive things about this recipe. I modified this recipe to include freshly squeezed orange juice and orange rind, and adjusted the flour accordingly.

 Increasing the flour meant more batter, so we had some cupcakes as well.

A small mini cake to go along. I was out of walnuts, as my kids have a big appetite for nuts and berries. As luck would have it, I had bought a packet of dried wild berries a day before, and they have not had a chance to finish it yet. So, I used berries instead.

Here's the recipe
1/2 cup butter
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 cup light brown sugar
3 eggs
3 cups sifted all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/3 cup mashed ripe bananas
1/4 cup milk
1 cup chopped walnuts
3/4 cup or freshly squeezed juice from 1 large orange
rind from 1 large orange

  1. Heat oven to 350°F. Mix orange rind and sugar thoroughly.
  2. In a large mixing bowl cream butter, vanilla and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs, one at a time.
  3. Sift flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt together. Mix mashed bananas, orange juice and milk together.
  4. Blend dry ingredients into batter alternating with banana and orange mixture. Stir in chopped nuts.
  5. Pour batter into 2 greased and floured 9-inch round or square baking pans.
  6. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes or until cake tester inserted in center comes out clean.
  7. Cool 10 minutes, then turn out on racks until thoroughly cool. When ready to serve frost with Cream Cheese Frosting.
Cream Cheese Frosting: In mixing bowl, stir cheese until smooth. Gradually beat in sugar a little at a time. Add vanilla; beat until smooth. Spread mixture between layers and around sides.

You can find the original Banana Walnut cake recipe here.

I can't wait to make it again with walnuts and maybe some frosting.

Happy Baking !

Monday, June 15, 2015

Warm Cozy Wrap

Last December I stumbled upon this super soft and warm Mountaintop Chalet yarn from Classic Elite. My local yarn store had a beautiful wrap/scarf knitted from this yarn for display. I bought that yarn right there as a Christmas gift for myself. I finally got to knitting it this year. 

The pattern for this yarn is available for sale at Ravelry. I did not purchase the pattern as I just went with the flow of changing colors on the bias.

I still need to block it, but have already used it couple of times. Totally love it.

Happy Knitting!

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

ColorBlock Bias Baby Blanket

This appears to be the baby season in our extended family. Which means I get knit more. I always prefer mindless knitting. That's the reason I get drawn towards blankets and scarves. This baby blanket is my latest knitting project that I completed. The pattern is from purlbee.  For yarn, I used Cascade 220 Superwash sport from Webs.

Love these Tassels.

Happy Knitting! 

Monday, May 18, 2015

Chocolate Cupcakes with Salted Caramel Chocolate Ganache

My search for the perfect Chocolate Cupcakes have ended. This recipe from gimmesomeoven  makes such moist delicious cupcakes. For the cakes, I still love my recipe here, but my cupcakes were always little dry with it. 

For the Salted Caramel Chocolate Ganache:

1 cup salted caramel sauce
1/2 cup cream
18 ounces dark chocolate

Heat the salted caramel sauce in a pan, and add dark chocolate pieces to it. Take off the heat, and add half cup cream. Let it settle for couple of hours before piping it.

I did not wait long enough for the ganache to settle, and started piping while it was still warm, and so the messed up piping.

For salted caramel, I followed the below recipe from Flavor the Moments:


  • 1 cup graulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoon unsalted butter, cut into cubes
  • 1 teaspoon fleur de sel

Place the sugar and water in medium saucepan over medium low heat. Cook, stirring, until the sugar has dissolved.  Increase the heat to high, and boil the sugar without stirring. If the sugar begins to crystallize on the sides of the pan, carefully use a wet pastry brush to brush it off.  Boil until the sugar turns a deep amber color, being careful not to burn.  Remove from heat and whisk in the cream a bit at a time. Whisk in the butter and fleur se sel. Transfer to a cool jar.

Happy Baking!

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Cozy Ribbed Cowl

Spring is here, but its still cool enough for me to continue working on my knitting projects. This year, so far has been all about knitting. Handmade knitted scarves and blankets make such wonderful gifts.

We moved to a new place last fall and as luck would have it, there is an amazing yarn(Monarch Knitting) place close to my home. All the soft merino makes me drool and I normally end up buying yarn for projects way into future.  So acquiring quite a stash.

So, this cowl was my 4th knitting project this winter. First 3 were gifted without taking any picture. The yarn used is Malabrigo Chunky  and its a simple Ribbed pattern. I found the ribbed pattern on my new favorite knitting site Purl Bee. I modified this pattern slightly to K4, P4 intead of K2 P2, and used different set of needles as per the yarn. 

Happy Knitting!

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