When I went in search for photos for this month’s roundup, I had only a few to select. Apparently two months of vacations will limit my photo taking inclinations! It wasn’t as if there was little opportunity – we had parties and get-togethers that all had picture moments. Unfortunately, I’m still working on getting into the habit of taking those pictures.
Things I’ll remember this month include sweltering hot days mixed with cooler nights – a clear sign of Fall.
Actually, I’m beginning to wonder if food bloggers are more anxious for Fall than the stores! I don’t know about you, but I’m a bit put off by all of the pumpkin recipes already appearing in my feeds. I love pumpkin, don’t get me wrong. But I love it when the temps aren’t in the 90s with the first day of Fall a month away.
The change in temps, however, might have spurred my baking fever.
It all started with a deep craving for cinnamon buns.
While they didn’t come out quite as planned, they were still delicious and gave me wonderful ideas for future bun endeavors.
Then I used the excuse of visitors to whip up a loaf of Coconut Chocolate Chip Banana Bread with Lime Glaze.
The original recipe came from Sweet Pea’s Kitchen and I followed it very closely.
Except for a few changes:
- Mini Chocolate Chips – because bananas and coconut demand chocolate and because all things are made that much yummier with melty bits of chocolate in every bite.
- A thick lime glaze – I LOVE glaze. I’m not so keen on thick cake icing, but when it comes to buns and breads, the more glaze the better. So I increased the amount of sugar to make a thicker, tastier layer.
- Out with the rum and in with the lime – I don’t have rum in the house, but I do have lime. So, in it went and it truly made the bread bond with the icing.
Everyone agreed that it was indeed tasty. They especially liked the glaze and to be honest, I think the glaze makes the bread. Course, it didn’t hurt that coconut and chocolate was involved.
I made this on a Friday and it was all gone by Sunday. Not bad for a whole loaf.
I also dabbled in making fresh pesto this month.
I had bought pesto in the past, only to find out that one of the ingredients was animal rennet. Rennet. Sounds innocuous, doesn’t it? Um, no. After looking it up I was shocked to find out what it was (like when I found out that some brands of cake use cochineal as food coloring just so they can say “all natural”). Yuck. Gross as all get out.
So, having tossed bottles of pesto and feeling betrayed, I finally grew a basil plant this year in my herb pot garden and plucked a bunch. I used a recipe that was simple and delicious without a lot of fat.
I know that there are a ton of pesto recipes already out there, but I like to think that this one is just slightly healthier and more present, if you know what I mean, than some of them. At any rate, it was something I was keen to make and having accomplished it, I’m planning to make some more with the rest of the basil.
You know, before the snow hits.
(Note: Original recipe from The Adaptable Feast. My adaptations are in red.)
- 2 cups packed fresh basil, torn into small pieces
- 1/2 tsp fresh lemon juice
- 1 clove garlic, smashed
- Scant 1/4 cup walnuts
- 5 tbsp olive oil
- 1/4 cup Parmesan (I used Parmesan made without animal rennet)
- Freshly ground black pepper to taste
- Place basil in food processor with lemon juice, garlic and nuts. Pulse until well chopped and pasty.
- Slowly pulse in oil, stopping after each tablespoon to scrape down the sides of the bowl. Blend until smooth.
- Stir in cheese with spoon and season with pepper.
Makes about 1 cup.
Tip: You can freeze cubes of pesto for future use by spooning pesto into an ice cube tray. Just freeze and then pop out into a plastic bag for future use. This works really well, especially if you’re the only one in the house that likes the stuff.