Tag Archives: rum

Caramelized Banana Bread with Browned Butter Glaze

I can’t make Banana Bread. And by can’t, I mean shouldn’t. Does anyone else have a problem not eating an entire loaf of banana bread in one sitting? I think I have everything under control until I pull the pan out of the oven and the aroma that envelopes the entire house cradles me and slides me into the Land of Absolutely No Willpower. I’ll just cut a slice off the end. I’ll just slice one more piece. Okay, just one more and I’m done. Well, that piece was lopsided so I might as slice this off. Now, that looks weird so I should cut another piece. Have I really almost eaten half of this bread? What’s one more slice? You know what I mean. When I see a recipe like this Caramelized Banana Bread with Browned Butter Glaze, I tell myself I shouldn’t make it. I even convince myself I won’t make it and consider for a second not keeping the recipe. But then when I have those dark brown bananas sitting on my counter, well, I’m not going to throw them out. And putting them in the freezer for smoothies is just not a train I can get on. I hunt down that recipe.

The bananas are sautéed in butter with brown sugar until thick and caramelized. The gooey goodness is mixed with your standard quick bread ingredients (oh, and a little rum) and baked until puffy and golden. Then, to take things over the top, butter that is cooked until toasty brown is mixed with half-and-half and powdered sugar. This brown butter glaze isn’t needed, but you’ll be glad you added it. When you slide that glaze over the bread and watch it as it seeps into it’s deep, crusty crevices, you’ll be thankful. Just try to contain yourself and eat one piece. Just. Try.

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Preheat oven to 350°F. Melt 3 tablespoons butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add brown sugar and bananas; sauté 4 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat; cool 10 minutes. Place banana mixture in a large bowl. Beat with a mixer at medium speed until smooth.

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Combine buttermilk, oil, rum and eggs. Weigh or lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour, baking soda, and salt. Add flour mixture and buttermilk mixture alternately to banana mixture, beginning and ending with flour mixture; beat at low speed just until combined.

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Scrape batter into a 9 x 5-inch metal loaf pan coated with baking spray. Bake at 350°F for 1 hour or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out with moist crumbs clinging. Cool for 10 minutes in pan on a wire rack. Remove bread from pan, and cool on wire rack.

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Melt remaining 1 tablespoon butter in a small, heavy saucepan over medium-high heat. Cook 3 minutes or until butter begins to brown; remove from heat. Add powdered sugar and half-and-half, stirring with a whisk until smooth.

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Drizzle glaze over bread. Let stand until glaze sets.

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Additions: None

Omissions: None

Substitutions: None

Overall Rating: Love It

Source: Cooking Light magazine

White Chocolate Mocha

Did you do a lot of baking around the holiday and still have partial bags of chocolate chips laying around your cabinets? Well I do. What do you do with those leftover chips? Sure, I could combine them all into a fabulous mega-chip cookie but I’m a bit cookied out after the holiday and need a break from that. I’m not inclined to snack on white chocolate the way I might regular chocolate so when I came across this recipe for White Chocolate Mocha, it seemed like the most perfect way for me to a)use up those chips and b) warm up!

White chocolate and milk are melted together with a little coffee, a tiny bit of rum, and a tinier bit of vanilla. The trivial amount of rum isn’t significant enough for me to consider this an alcoholic beverage and while you could leave it out, it adds yet another layer to this mocha that feels so deep and complex. I’m not usually the biggest of white chocolate fans. I mean, I like it but I’ll generally take any brown chocolate over white any day. But this! Oh my goodness! I can’t even begin to tell you how much I loved this. It was so boldly flavorful without being too sweet or too rich. The coffee flavor was just subtle enough to make this a mocha without making it overwhelming. This mocha was like getting a warm, sweet, childlike hug before bed. Please, if you have any white chocolate lingering in your cabinets, make this as soon as you can!

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In a large heavy saucepan combine white chocolate and 2/3 cup of the milk. Cook and stir over medium-low heat until chocolate is melted. Add remaining milk.

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Cook and stir over medium heat until heated through. Stir in coffee, rum, and vanilla.

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Serve in mugs topped with marshmallows.

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Additions: None

Omissions: None

Substitutions: None

Overall Rating: Love It

Source: Better Homes & Gardens magazine

Seaside Sunrise

I spent all of last week in Chicago and, despite battling an allergic eye infection that forced me to wear my glasses all week, I used the opportunity to rest, relax, and read. I took long walks along the water and spent the warm (and warm-ish) days at the beach on the lake. I slept in a lot which was different from my last trip to Chicago in May where I was awoken every morning at 6am by a happy dog named Abigail eager to go outside. Watching the sun come up over Lake Michigan is enchanting and I was able to get up early enough once last week to catch it. The way the sun glistens over the water, making the lake look silver and glossy, is a sight that I never tire of. This Seaside Sunrise seems appropriate.

Pineapple, orange-mango, and cranberry juices are mixed with passion fruit rum, a little grenadine (which I left out) and topped with sparkling wine and fruit slices. Any of your favorite rum could be added here but the flavor of the passion fruit combined with the different fruit juices really makes this a perfect little summer cocktail. Whether you are seaside or landlocked, make a batch of this and enjoy our last days of summer.

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Combine pineapple juice, mango-orange juice, passion fruit rum, cranberry juice, and grenadine in a large pitcher.

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Pour into ice-filled glasses, and top with sparkling wine, if desired.

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Garnish, if desired.

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Additions: None

Omissions:

  • Grenadine

Substitutions: None

Overall Rating: Love It

Source: Coastal Living magazine

Summer Sangria

Happy 4th of July! With the recent humidity and summer thunderstorms (not to mention the random hurricane), it officially feels like summer finally. Some of us in the northeast are still dealing with cloudy and/or rainy skies on this Independence Day but since when does the weather keep us from enjoying a cocktail? This Summer Sangria is quick, simple, and packs a punch.

White wine (I used Sauvignon Blanc but Pinot Grigio would be good also) and flavored rum or vodka (I used passion fruit rum) are mixed with a  little simple syrup and fruit.  Raspberries, blueberries, and strawberries made this summer cocktail especially patriotic for the weekend but grapes, peaches, oranges, kiwi or mango would be great additions too. Basically, use any fruit, any white wine, and any flavored spirit to make this quick sangria. I hope everyone has an amazing holiday weekend and enjoys their freedom, rain or shine.

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Combine wine, rum (or vodka), fruit and simple syrup in a large pitcher. Cover and chill at least 2 hours. Add ice; serve immediately.

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Additions: None

Omissions: None

Substitutions:

  • Strawberries and blueberries

Overall Rating: Love It

Source: Coastal Living magazine

 

Rum-Marinated Chicken Breasts with Pineapple Relish

I hope everyone had a great weekend!  I spent the weekend laying low, only going to dinner and a movie on Friday night with friends and spending the rest of my time engrossed in a new novel while watching either Food Network or reruns of various Bourne movies.  That’s pretty much how I roll.  Oh, and I made food.  Like usual.  Again, that’s how I roll.  I usually scan the grocery store circulars to see what’s on sale before I decide what to make but this week, I decided to make what I was in the mood for.  I sucked up the fact that chicken is ridiculously expensive in order to make Rum-Marinated Chicken Breasts with Pineapple Relish, a light chicken dish filled with vibrant tropical flavors.

Chicken breasts are marinated in a mixture of dark rum, barbecue sauce, Caribbean hot sauce and lime juice before being grilled to perfection and topped off with a golden relish of fresh pineapple and red pepper.  Never had Caribbean hot sauce?  I’m no stranger to Pickapeppa Sauce (a condiment made of tomatoes, mangoes, raisins and peppers, among other things) which was introduced to me by my old roommate who would pour half a bottle over cream cheese and smear it over Triscuits.  True story.  There was never a shortage of Pickapeppa in my apartment.  But I digress.  The rum marinade perfectly tenderizes the chicken and is then boiled to create a rich, silky sauce.  The golden relish is tangy, slightly sweet, tart and a tasty complement to the chicken.  Not a fan of pineapple’s acidity?  Consider substituting any summer fruit, like mango, peach or nectarine.  This is a chicken dish that I could eat, in any variation, nearly every day.  

The ingredients (disregard the honey, my bad):

Combine dark rum, barbecue sauce, Pickapeppa sauce, lime juice, salt and vegetable oil in large zip-top plastic bag.  Add chicken to the bag and seal, allowing chicken to marinate in the refrigerator for 2 hours, turning bag occasionally.

To prepare relish, place pineapple on grill rack coated with cooking spray and grill 3 minutes on each side or until soft and browned around the edge.  Allow to cool slightly and chop. 

Combine pineapple, bell pepper, lime rind, lime juice, dark rum, Pickapeppa sauce and salt in a bowl and set aside.

Remove the chicken from the bag and set aside.  Reserve marinade, discarding any chicken bits remaining and let stand at room temperature for 10 minutes.  Set aside.  Place chicken on grill rack coated with cooking spray and grill until chicken is cooked to 165ºF.  (Remove and discard skin if using bone-in chicken.)

Bring reserved marinade to a boil in a small saucepan and cook 1 minute.  Drizzle cooked marinade over chicken.

Serve chicken with relish and lime wedges.

Additions:  None

Omissions:  None

Substitutions:

  • Boneless chicken breasts

Overall Rating:  Love It

Source:  Cooking Light Magazine

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