September 25, 2011

Zabar's Banana Bread

This recipe for those who likes really delicious piece of banana bread. It's not just a recipe, it's recipe from Zabar's blog. For many people Zabar's means a gold standard in cooking and baking. And these people is right. Zabar's deli is one of the best in US. It's a first recipe from their blog I tried and it's an instant hit. My coworkers and I really like it. Now I offer you to make really delish banana bread. Plus this recipe can be pareve.
Enjoy as much as we enjoyed.

I made 2 loaves because I want to entertain my coworkers with something new and tasty. I came out with similar recipe.

Zabar's Banana Bread (corrected version)
For 2 loaves

3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
3 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cup sugar
2 egg
1 tsp vanilla
2/3 cup strong coffee or espresso (can substitute with milk)
5 mashed ripe medium size bananas
1 cup chopped walnuts

Zabar's Banana Bread (original version).

2 cups white whole wheat flour or all-purpose flour
½ tsp baking soda
1 ½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
½ cup butter, softened (see tip below)
2/3 cup sugar
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
¼ tsp orange blossom water (optional)
1/3 cup strong coffee or espresso (can substitute with milk)
2-3 mashed ripe bananas (see banana tips below)
¾ cup walnuts

Preheat oven to 350 F

1. In a medium bowl mix together the dry ingredients: flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt. I use white whole wheat flour for a little extra nutrition without having bread that seems “whole wheat-y”. Set this aside.
2. In a large bowl cream the softened butter until smooth and light. If you haven’t pre-softened your butter, here’s my trick: slice it into ½” slices and place in a microwave safe bowl and microwave it for 8 second increments. Slicing it before microwaving will soften the butter without melting it. Every microwave’s power settings are different so experiment to see what time works best for you.
3. Add the sugar and continue to mix it until it’s creamy.
4. Add the beaten egg, vanilla, orange blossom water, and espresso and mix until lemon colored and fluffy. You can use an electric mixer, but I don’t, especially for the following steps, your bread will turn out better if you mix it by hand with a wooden spoon.
5. Add the flour mixture slowly, stirring until just combined and add the mashed bananas and walnuts.
6. Transfer this to a greased 9 inch loaf pan. Smooth it to fit. Bake 50 – 60 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Let it sit for 10 minutes in the pan before you transfer it to a wire rack to cool.
You can also bake this as muffins; just reduce the cooking time to around 25 minutes. It will make about 10 muffins, depending on how tall you want them to be.
A note about bananas. The perfect banana for this recipe is a very very ripe banana. It’s very yellow with a lot of brown spots on it. The more brown there is the sweeter the banana is. If you have ripe bananas on hand (but aren’t ready to bake with them) just peel them, wrap them well and freeze them. Then thaw them before adding them to your mixture.

Recipe from Zabar's Blog

September 06, 2011

Middle Eastern Cucumber Salad

1 large English cucumber (2-3 medium size cucumbers from farmer's market), peeled, thinly sliced; 1 small red onion, finely shopped; 1/2 teaspoon salt, 2 teaspoon of mint, chopped; 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin, pinch of sugar, 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice, 2 tablespoon olive oil.

Toss vegetables with remaining ingredients in a serving bowl. Taste a piece of cucumber and add salt, sugar or lemon to taste. Serve at once.

Салат из огурцов.
1 больщой огурец или 2-3 среднего размера свежих огурца. Почистить и тонко порезать; 1 мелко нарезанная небольшая головка красного лука; 1/2 чайной ложки соли, 2 чайных ложки мелко порезанной мяты; 1/2 чайной ложки молотого кумина, щепотка сахара, 1 столовая ложка свежего лимонного сока, 2 столовые ложки оливкового масла.

Все перемешать. Попробовать, если нужно добавить соли, сахара или лимонного сока. Подать на стол.