Zucchini Banana Nut Bread

Zucchini Banana Nut Bread

Zucchini Banana Nut Bread

Summer is winding down pretty quickly and Autumn will soon be upon us, but there is still time to stop by your local farmer’s market and stock up on all the fabulous produce they have to offer – which is exactly what I have been doing for the past several weeks.

I must say, there is nothing quite like the taste of fresh, locally grown produce. Anything you bake and/or cook with fresh fruits and veggies tastes more flavorful, not to mention it feels so good to support the local farmers.

While strolling through the entrance of a farmer’s market recently, I caught sight of a huge zucchini at a nearby stand. I was quick to purchase the monster squash before anyone else could snap it up, and as I placed it gently in my canvas shopping bag, I knew that I had severely underestimated just how big and heavy it actually was. After just a few minutes of toting the hefty veggie around the market, it began to dawn on me that it probably would have been wiser to save that purchase for last. :)

One of the first things I thought of using the zucchini in was bread, but instead of making the usual zucchini bread, I decided to combine it with another family favorite, bananas, and made this delicious and incredibly moist Zucchini Banana Nut Bread. This yummy bread is quick and easy to prepare, and can be enjoyed anytime of the day – whether it is with a cup of coffee for breakfast, or as an afternoon snack.

Now, what should I use the rest of the zucchini in?? (trust me, I have a lot left over)

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Zucchini Banana Nut Bread

1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1 egg
1 cup mashed banana (approx. 2 medium bananas)
1/2 cup canola oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup shredded zucchini
1/2 cup chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Grease and flour a 9-inch x 5-inch loaf pan, or spray with cooking spray.

In a large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg.

In a small bowl, beat the egg, banana, oil and vanilla. Stir into dry ingredients just until moistened. Fold in zucchini and pecans.

Bake for 45-55 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean.

Cool bread in pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Remove bread from pan and cool completely on wire rack.

Yield: 1 loaf

(To print this recipe, click on the ‘Print & PDF’ button below)

Skillet Pumpkin Cornbread

Skillet Pumpkin Cornbread

Skillet Pumpkin Cornbread

It turned out that the wind storm we had this past weekend wasn’t quite as bad as the previous wind storm. There was one big wind gust that was recorded to be 120 miles per hour, but for the most part, the wind wasn’t too bad. The rain however, that’s a different story. It rained so hard and for so long, that some small streams overflowed their banks, and some roads in town were flooded and impassable. I was hoping that the weather would calm down for a few days so we would have a chance to dry out, but the weather forecasters are predicting another big wind storm to hit our area this evening, and bring more heavy rain with it. If this is the way our Fall season is going to be, I can’t wait to see what Winter has in store for us.

Since the weather has been so cold, rainy, and windy lately, I decided to make one of my favorite cold weather dinners – Chili!! And I couldn’t think of a better side dish to pair with a steaming bowl of chili than cornbread. I didn’t want to make just your average, ordinary cornbread though, so I made Skillet Pumpkin Cornbread!! I find that regular cornbread can be dry and crumbly sometimes, but when you add some pumpkin puree into the mix, it brings the moisture level way up. This cornbread is very light and moist, and the pumpkin flavor goes surprisingly well with chili.

I’d better be sure to stock my pantry with plenty of cans of pumpkin, because with the weather we’ve been having lately, I think I’ll be making a lot of chili and cornbread for dinner.


Skillet Pumpkin Cornbread

1 1/2 cups yellow corn meal
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
1 1/2 cups milk
1/2 cup canola oil
2 large eggs, slightly beaten
3/4 cup pumpkin puree

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Grease a 12-inch cast iron skillet, or make sure skillet is well-seasoned.

In a large bowl, combine corn meal, flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and pumpkin pie spice. Set aside.

In a medium bowl, combine milk, oil, eggs and pumpkin puree. Whisk until well combined. Add mixture to dry ingredients and stir just until blended. Pour batter into prepared skillet.

Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Serve warm.

Skillet Pumpkin Cornbread

Skillet Pumpkin Cornbread

Moist Delicious Banana Bread

Banana Bread

Banana Bread

Banana Bread

Banana Bread

At the same time that I found the plump, juicy organic blackberries that I used in the Blackberry Cobbler earlier this week, I also found some beautiful looking organic bananas. My first thought was that the bananas would be great to pack for lunch and snack on at work, but when I arrived home with them, I was soon to discover that my family had other plans. One of the very first questions that I was asked was, “Are you going to make Banana Bread with some of those??”. It’s hard to turn down a request like that, so as soon as we polished off the Blackberry Cobbler, I got to work making a loaf of Moist Delicious Banana Bread.

Now I’ve baked and eaten a lot of banana bread in my lifetime, and this banana bread has to be right up there among some of the very best I’ve ever had. Moist and delicious are the perfect adjectives to describe this bread. The bananas and canola oil are two of the ingredients that help make it moist, but I think the applesauce adds a greater moisture content that really makes this bread soft and delicious.

Enjoyed warm or cold, with a pat of butter or plain, this banana bread is a wonderful treat to snack on any time of the day.


Banana Bread

1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
1 cup mashed banana (approx. 2 medium bananas)
1/4 cup canola oil
1/4 cup applesauce
1/4 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla butter & nut extract

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Grease and flour a 9-inch x 5-inch loaf pan.

In a large bowl, combine flour, sugars, baking soda and salt; set aside.

In a medium bowl, combine eggs, banana, oil, applesauce, milk and vanilla butter & nut extract. Add to flour mixture, stirring just until combined. Pour batter into loaf pan.

Bake for 1 hour, or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool bread in pan on a wire rack for 5 minutes. Remove bread from pan and cool completely on wire rack.

Yield: 1 loaf.

Lemon Poppy Seed Monkey Bread

Lemon Poppy Seed Monkey Bread

Lemon Poppy Seed Monkey Bread

Looking for a quick and easy treat to whip up during this busy Easter holiday weekend? Well, this Lemon Poppy Seed Monkey Bread should do the trick.

This light, fluffy bread glazed with lemon and poppy seeds is extremely easy to make and tastes delicious. You don’t even need to make dough, as long as you have a loaf of frozen bread dough already in your freezer. Just take the dough out of the freezer, thaw, and your ready to proceed. I try to keep a loaf of frozen bread in my freezer at all times, because it stores well and can be used in place of freshly prepared dough in so many recipes.

I think this monkey bread would make a wonderful addition to an Easter brunch menu, but given that it’s so easy to prepare, you can whip it up in no time and enjoy it any day of the week.

Happy Easter everyone!! I hope you all have a wonderful holiday weekend!


Lemon Poppy Seed Monkey Bread

1/2 cup granulated sugar
5 packets True Lemon
1/2 tablespoon poppy seeds
1/3 cup butter, melted
1 loaf (1 lb.) frozen bread dough, thawed

Grease and flour a 10-inch fluted pan or a 9-in. x 5-in. loaf pan.

In small shallow bowl, combine sugar, True Lemon and poppy seeds; mix well.

Separate dough into 1-inch pieces and roll into balls. Dip each ball into melted butter; roll in sugar-lemon-poppy seed mixture. Arrange in prepared pan. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.

Bake at 350 degrees for 22-26 minutes or until golden brown. (Cover loosely with foil if top browns too quickly)

Cool in pan for 10 minutes. Loosen edges; remove from pan and place on serving plate. Serve warm.

Italian Herb Skillet Bread

Italian Herb Skillet Bread

Italian Herb Skillet Bread

I discovered this recipe on the Rhodes Bake-N-Serv Blog the other day, and it looked so yummy that I just knew that I would have to make this bread in the very near future. Well, I didn’t have to wait very long, because today turned out to be the day that I would try it.

I know I’ve probably mentioned this in previous posts, but I really love the Rhodes product line – especially their frozen dinner rolls. They bake up so big and soft, and they come out perfect every time I make them. They are so good in fact, that they have now become a staple at all of our holiday dinners.

From the delicious smells that were filling my kitchen while this Italian Herb Skillet Bread was baking, I just knew that it was going to be a winner. When it finally came time to remove the bread from the oven, I could see that, just like the dinner rolls always do, it had turned out absolutely perfect.

The crispy outer crust coated with Italian herbs and Parmesan cheese is so delicious, and the inside of the bread is very soft and chewy. This would be a perfect bread to serve with an Italian pasta dish, or you can just enjoy it as I did – all by itself.


Italian Herb Skillet Bread
(recipe from the Rhodes Bake-N-Serv Blog)

7 Rhodes frozen dinner rolls
1/4 teaspoon basil
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/4 teaspoon oregano
1/4 teaspoon rosemary
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes
3 tablespoons butter, melted

Spray a small iron skillet with cooking spray. Place 7 frozen rolls in the skillet, leaving plenty of room for rising.

Cover and allow to rise for several hours. Uncover rolls.

Combine herbs and mix with melted butter. Brush rolls with half of the melted butter and herbs.

Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese if desired.

Bake at 350 for 15 to 20 minutes, or until rolls are a deep golden brown on top.
Brush with additional butter and serve in skillet.

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