I love the smell of banana bread baking in the oven. It is reminiscent of my childhood when my mom would make fresh baked banana bread. The riper the bananas, the sweeter the taste. Keep scrolling for my spin on mom's traditional banana bread recipe. Hint, I made them into muffins and topped them with shredded coconut. Yum!
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 large bananas, mashed
3/4 cup white sugar
1/3 cup butter, melted
1/4 cup sliced almonds
2 Tbl shredded coconut
Preheat over to 350 degrees F. Coat muffin pans with non-stick spray. Sift together the flour, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
Combine bananas, sugar, egg, and melted butter in a large bowl. Stir in almonds. Fold in flour mixture. Add almonds and mix until smooth. Scoop into muffin pans. Top with granulated sugar and shredded coconut.
Bake mini muffins for 10 to 15 minutes. Bake large muffins for 25 to 30 minutes.
These are so good. I find it hard to resist eating more than just one muffin. They are perfect to serve for brunches and family reunions.
Invitation Design Update: I am now winding down from Easter and gearing up for summer and all of the fun festivities associated with the season. I know that summer is still a couple of months away. However, I couldn't resist sharing with you my latest designs for editable text family reunion invitations.
Weddings are all about love, celebration, and the perfect signature cocktail. Am I right? I went in search of some wonderfully unique cocktail recipes that are sure to take you straight to the islands. In today's post I am sharing with you my personal favorite signature cocktail ideas that you can use for your tropical themed wedding reception or cocktail party.
Tropical Rum Margarita
Squirt of Lime Juice
1 ounce Agave Nectar
1.5 Ounce Captain Morgan Cannon Blast Rum
3 Ounces Margarita Mix
In a Boston shaker add lime juice, agave nectar, rum, Margarita mix and ice. Shake vigorously for about 30 seconds. Strain into a glass filled with crushed ice. Garnish with fruit.
Ultimate Beach Cocktail
1 1/2 oz. Vodka
3/4 oz. Thai Basil and Black Peppercorn Syrup
3/4 oz. yuzu citrus (1/4 oz. yuzu juice and 1/2 oz. lemon juice)
2 1/2 oz. fresh-squeezed pomelo or grapefruite juice
Kosher Salt and Black Pepper Rim
To make the Thai Basil and black peppercorn syrup: In a saucepan, roast 1 tablespoon. whole black peppercorns plus 1/2 tablespoon cracked peppercorns over high heat for 6 minutes. Add 1 cup of water plus 1 cup of sugar. Stir and bring to a boil. Let cool. Add 7 stems of Thai Basil and let rest overnight. Strain syrup to remove peppercorns and basil.
Rim half of a Collins glass with salt and pepper. In a Boston shaker, combine all ingredients and shake for 10 seconds. Strain over fresh ice into Collins glass. Garnish with one sprig of Thai basil. Enjoy!
Pink Lemonade Jello Shots
2 Packets of Unflavored Gelatin
1 Cup Pink Lemonade
1/2 Cup Regular Vodka
1/2 Cup Lemon Vodka
Cut lemons in half and scoop out the insides. Heat the lemonade in a pan over medium heat and stir in the packets of gelatin slowly until they dissolve. Add the lemonade and gelatin mixture to a pourable container. Pour in vodkas. Stir until combined. Place lemon halves into a muffin tin to keep them upright. Pour in the liquid until each half is full and refrigerate for 4 hours or until set. Slice into slices right before serving.
Are you planning a tropical cocktail party? Perhaps you will like these pretty party invitations.
Victoria's Favorite Vegan, No Flour, No Bake and Traditional Cookie Recipes
The holidays are quickly approaching. Soon our homes will be filled with the aromas of freshly baked goods and Christmas cheer. One of my favorite traditions is the cookie swap. Hosting a Christmas cookie swap is a great way to simplify your holiday baking. Instead spending an entire day baking batch after batch of 10 different kinds of cookies, each person makes enough of their favorite cookie to share at at holiday cookie swap. This gives you more time with friends and family. I would like to share with you some of my favorite recipes for vegan cookies, no flour cookies, no bake cookies and a twist on a traditional oatmeal cookie recipe that has become a favorite among my family and friends.
Coconut and Chocolate Chip Cookies
This is a recipe that my dear friend Sharon shared with me a few weeks ago. One bite of this cookie and you will fall in love. The best part is that you only need 4 ingredients. The recipe can easily be modified into vegan cookies by substituting the chocolate chips for vegan chocolate chips. These cookies are also free of flour.
1 Bag of Coconut
1 Bag of Chocolate Chip
Chopped Pecans or Almonds (optional)
1 Can Sweet Condensed Milk
Stir ingredients together in a large mixing bowl. Cover a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Moisten fingers and drop dough by the heaping rounded teaspoon full onto parchment paper, shape, and pat down. Bake at 325 degrees for about 10 minutes.
Victoria's No Bake Chocolate Raspberry Nut Cookies
This is a recipe that I literally dreamed up one night. I love, love, love the combination of raspberries and chocolate. Guilt free, easy to make and perfect if you want just a little sweet. I like to make these for the Holidays and parties because they are so simple.
1 1/2 cups almonds
1 cup dried apricots cut into pieces
1/2 cup almond butter
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup un-sweetened shredded coconut.
1 pkg fresh raspberries
1/3 cup vegan chocolate chips
In a food processor, chop up almonds. Next add dried apricots, then almond butter, and then syrup and process to form a stiff paste or meal. Form into teaspoon-size balls and roll in shredded coconut. Pat down into a round cookie. Melt chocolate chips in a double boiler over med-low heat. Add a dollop of melted chocolate to each cookie. Top with a fresh raspberry. Refrigerate before serving. Makes 24 cookies.
Victoria's Chocolatey Crunchy (sort of) Cookies
In case you haven't noticed by now, I am a big fan of chocolate. I developed this recipe back in March of 2011 when I was striving to to limit bad sugars from my diet. These cookies are a guilt-free decadent treat that literally whips up in minutes. Zero processed sugar, gluten free, vegan, and so yummy. AND, as if that were not enough, they are filled with antioxidants, iron, and magnesium. This delicious recipe uses raw chocolate nibs, touted as a Mayan superfood.
1/2 cup CACAO Nibs (Found at Whole Foods)
3/4 cups almonds
1/2 cup unsweetened coconut
1/2 cup brown rice syrup
1 tsp cocoa
2 cups grain sweetened non-dairy chocolate chips
1/4 cup hemp milk
Dried cherries or cranberries
30 mini paper cupcake liners
Chop the almonds in a food processor. Add CACAO Nibs, coconut, and cocoa. Pulse a few more times. Add brown rice syrup and pulse until completely blended, scraping down the sides as necessary.
In a double boiler melt chocolate chips. Add hemp milk and stir until completely mixed. Add about 1 tsp of melted chocolate to mini cupcake liners. Layer with about a tspn or less of almond mixture. Don’t worry if the almond mixture doesn’t spread evenly. No big deal! Then add another layer of melted chocolate until the almond mixture is completely covered. Top with a dried cherry (my favorite) or dried cranberry. Refrigerate for one hour. Then enjoy after a long day with a nice glass of red wine… or anytime.
Not Your Traditional Oatmeal Cookies - Cranberry & White Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies
You may use your oatmeal cookie recipe and spruce it up with the ingredients below. Or you may cheat and use the Betty Crocker Oatmeal Cookie Mix like I did. Make extra because these cookies won't last.
1 Tblsp Water
1 Stick of Butter Softened
1 tsp. Orange Extract
1/2 Cup Chopped Almonds
1/2 Cup Chopped Walnuts
1/2 Cup Dried Cranberries
1/2 Cup White Chocolate Chunks
Zest of One Orange
1 Pkg Betty Crocker Oatmeal Cookie Mix
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large mixing bowl stir together butter, egg, water, and orange extract. Stir in cookie mix, dried cranberries, chopped nuts, white chocolate chunks and zest of orange.
Drop by teaspoon full onto un-greased cookie sheet. Bake for 10-11 minutes. Remove from cookie sheet and allow to cool. Makes 4 dozen cookies.
DECORATIVE COOKIE WRAPPING IDEAS
Once you have completed your cookie swap you can share them with your neighbors and coworkers. Wrap your cookies in boxes with festive holiday gift tags or stickers designed by VG Invites. Victoria has designed a complete line of invitations, greeting cards, gift tags and holiday stickers.