Category Archives: Baking

Banana Honey Muffins

banana honey muffins

 

Banana Honey Muffins are a perfect way to use up old bananas in the house. Like most people, i’m sure you always have a few bananas that are past their used by date. Never throw them in the trash, they store perfectly in the freezer and when you are ready to make a batch of delicious muffins you have them ready to go.

Here is another great recipe for a pretty heathy muffin that you can whip together in 15 minutes. Don’t fear if you don’t’ have all the fancy kitchen appliances, you can easily make these with two bowls and a spoon! These banana honey muffins are perfect for school lunch boxes and you can easily freeze.

The best way to store old bananas, is peel them and put into a freezer bag and freeze.

These honey banana muffins are so delicious straight out of the oven, so don’t forget to test one right away!! As you can see, my kids could not keep their hands off!!

Banana Honey Muffins

Ingredients:

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 3/4 cup wholemeal flour

350g peeled ripe bananas

2 eggs

1/3 cup sunflower oil

150g honey

 

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 180°C and line two muffins tins with cupcake cases or grease them well.

If bananas are frozen take them out of the freezer, it will take roughly 10minutes to thaw enough for you to mash with a fork. Once thawed, use a fork to mash the bananas.

Add flours, baking powder and salt to a large bowl and combine with a spoon.

In a separate bowl mix all your wet ingredients; bananas, eggs, sunflower oil and honey. Whisk till the ingredients are just combine, it will take not even 1 minute.

Max a well in the centre of the bowl with your dry ingredients, slowly pour the wet ingredients in. Mix till it’s combine, do not over mix.

Spoon batter into muffin trays. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until muffins spring back when touched lightly in center. Leave to rest in the tray for 5 minutes before cooling on a wire rack.

 

Happy baking!

All baking supplies used to make these banana honey muffins were purchased at Phoon Haut. Click here to read our review of Phoon Haut.

And for more great baking recipes click here.

E x

Elissa profile

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Blueberry Muffins with Oatmeal

Blueberry and Oatmeal Muffins

 

When it’s dark and rainy in Singapore and the kids have woken from their afternoon nap, what better thing to do than baking with them!! Trust me it sounds like fun, but it’s more mess than you can imagine but hey, we still end up with a batch of delicious and healthy muffins.

I’m always looking for ways reduce my kids sugar intake, so once again this recipe does not call for much sugar at all. As a result they are not super sweet, but you can add more sugar or honey if you think it’s needed.

An added bonus is these healthy muffins are school approved – no nuts!

 

Ingredients:

1 2/3 cups rolled oats

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 cup packed light brown sugar

2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

3/4 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 cups milk

1/4 cup canola oil

2 eggs

2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 180°C.

Place oats in a food processor; blend until oats resemble coarse meal. Place in a large bowl.

Add flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, baking powered, baking soda, and salt to oats. Mix well.

Combine milk, and oil, then add eggs and lightly whisk.  Add to flour mixture; stir just until just combine. Add the blueberries and fold into mixture with a spoon.

Spoon batter into 16 muffin tray that has been lined with cupcake cases or sprayed with butter or oil. Bake for 20 minutes or until muffins spring back when touched lightly in center. Leave to rest in the tray for 5 minutes before cooling on a wire rack.

 

This makes a big batch, so i’ve frozen half the muffins which means i can take them out of the freezer and pop them straight in the kids lunch boxes and they will be fresh.

 

Enjoy

E x

Elissa profile

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Mini Candy Cane Cupcakes

candy cane

These mini candy cane cupcakes look so cute on the plate and loved by kids, who gets a cupcake AND a candy cane all in one! Double the treat! I have sent these to school for end of year class parties and they are always a hit!

Ingredients:

Makes 48 mini cupcakes

¾ cup of caster sugar

125g butter softened

1 ½ cups self raising flour sifted

½ cup milk

2 eggs room temperature

1 teaspoon vanilla essence

For the Icing

1 ½ cup icing sugar sifted

125g melted butter

2 teaspoons vanilla essence

1 tablespoon milk

To decorate

1 container of red, white and green sprinkles. Whilton make them, but i’m sure you will fine them in most baking stores around Christmas time.  Phoon Haut in Singapore sell them.

1 pack of mini candy canes

Instructions

Pre heat your oven to 180°C and line a muffin tin with paper cases.

Using an electric mixer beat your butter, sugar and vanilla on high until it’s light and fluffy.

Add sifted flour, eggs, and milk and mix till it’s well combined.

Fill your cupcake cases to ¾ with the mixture as they will rise.

Bake for 15 minutes or until golden on top. Leave the cupcakes in the pan for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool.

To make the icing, using an electric mixer beat the butter on high till it’s white and fluffy. Add the milk, icing sugar and vanilla and beat till the icing sugar is well combined.

To assemble the cakes, fit a piping bag with a large star nozzle. Pipe the icing in one large swirl. Insert the candy cane into the centre of the cake and finish the cake off by adding the red, green and white sprinkles.

 

 

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Princess Crown Cake

Crown Cake

 

It was my daughter’s 4th birthday and of course like many girls, it’s all about princess’, barbie’s and ALL things pink!! I made this crown cake for her class. When i walked into the room the excitement on my daughter’s face along with all the little girls in the room was priceless!!

If you are not a confident baker or cake decorator, this is a good cake to test your skills. On a scale of 1 -10 in difficulty, i would say it’s only about a 4 or 5. This cake is really not hard to make and it will bring a huge smile to any little girls face.

 

Basic Cake

Ingredients:

2 ¼ cups plain flour

1 tablespoon baking powder

185 grams softened butter

1-2 teaspoon vanilla essence

¾ cup caster sugar

3 eggs

¾ cup milk

 

Instructions:

To make this cake big enough for the shape of the crown, I made the full cake recipe plus another ½ of the mixture.

Preheat oven to 180 degrees C. Grease and line a 33x21cm rectangular cake tin.

Sift the flour and baking powder into a large bowl. Add the butter, vanilla, sugar, eggs and milk and beat well with electric beaters for 3-4 minutes or until nice and smooth.

Pour the mixture into the tin and bake for 40-40 minutes. To test if the cake is cooked through, poke a skewer into the centre of the cake and if it comes out clean it’s cooked. Leave in the tin for 5 minutes, and then turn out onto a wire rack to cool.

The best way to shape the cake into a crown is to place the cooled cake in the fridge for a minimum of 1 hour. This makes it far easier to cut.

I used a Betty Crocker crown template. Go to the following link, print and cut out your desired size. http://www.bettycrocker.com/~/media/Files/PDF/Cake-Templates/BettyCrockerCrownCakeTemplate_final.ashx

Place the template on the top of your cake and secure with toothpicks. Using a sharp knife, start cutting the shape out. Ice the cake with frosting and decorate as desired.

 

 

Classic Frosting

You can use a simple butter cream icing, but living in Singapore this can be tricky as it melts very quickly in the heat so I’ve used vegetable shortening in the icing and it’s much firmer and holds well. I’ll give you both recipe options;

 

Buttercream Icing

2 ¼ cups of icing sugar, sifted

80 grams melted butter

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 tablespoon milk

 

Classic White Frosting

1 cup vegetable shortening

4 cups icing sugar, sifted

3-4 tablespoons milk

2 teaspoons vanilla essence

 

Beat the shortening and vanilla on a medium speed for about 1 minute. Gradually add 2 cups of sifted icing sugar. Add 2 tablespoons of milk. Gradually add in the last 2 cups of icing sugar. Then add some more milk till you get the desired consistency.

 

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Banana Bread

Banana Bread

 

I am no joke one of those people who could eat banana bread every day, so I’ve tried and tested a million different recipes; this hands down has to be one of the best. When you stay at the Royal Hawaiian in Waikiki, they leave a mini loaf of this incredible banana bread in your room.

This is how you make this deliciously moist and yummy banana bread.

 

Ingredients:

4-5 mashed ripe bananas (about 1 1/2 cups)

1 cup sugar

2 large eggs

1/2 cup vegetable oil

2 cups all purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 teaspoon of cinnamon

1/2 cup walnuts nuts as an option. You can use any nuts you like.

 

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 180°C and grease a 2″ x 4″ x 8″ loaf pan. In a bowl of an electric mixer, add sugar, oil, and eggs, mix till the sugar is dissolved.

Add mashed bananas and mix some more. Add all the dry ingredients into the bowl – flour, salt, vanilla, baking powder and baking soda and mix. You will have a very thick batter. As an option, mix in nuts of your choice.

Pour the batter into the loaf pan and bake for approximately one hour. Stick a toothpick in your banana bread to see if it comes out clean. Leave it for a few minutes to cool.

If you would like this banana bread recipe even moister, add more bananas.

 

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National Day Cupcakes

National Day Cupcakes

 

The nursery that my little boy attends is holding a party today to celebrate Singapore’s birthday and each child was asked to bring in some food to share. We opted to make cupackes in Singapore’s colours, red and white! I always make mini-cupcakes for this age group (3-4) because a few small bites is often enough for the littler one.

Ingredients – For the Cakes

Makes 48 mini cupackes

¾ cup of caster sugar

125gram of butter softened

1 ½ cups of self raising flour sifted

½ cup of milk

2 eggs at room temperature

1 teaspoon of vanilla essence

 

Instructions:

Pre heat your oven to 180°C and line a muffin tin with mini paper cupcake cases.

Using an electric mixer beat your butter, sugar and vanilla on high until it’s light and fluffy.

Add sifted flour, eggs, and milk and mix till it’s well combined.

Fill your cupcake cases to ¾ with the mixture. It wcupcakes depending on the size.

Bake for 15 minutes or until golden on top. Leave the cupcakes in the pan for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool.

 

Ingredients – For the Butter Cream Icing

1 ½ cup of icing sugar sifted

125 grams of melted butter

2 teaspoons of vanilla essence

1 tablespoon of milk

Wilton No Taste Red Food Colouring (purchase at Phoon Haut)

 

Instructions:

Using an electric mixer beat the butter on high till it’s white and fluffy. Add the milk, icing sugar and vanilla and beat till the icing sugar is well combined.

Split the icing into 3 portions. Put one portion of white icing to the side. Fit a disposable piping bag with a star nozzle and transfer one third of the icing to the piping bag. Add red food colouring to the remaining portion of icing. You will need to add ALOT of red food coloring to make the icing red. Start by adding 1 teaspoon and keep adding until the icing turns red. It will probably never get to a really red colour, but the colour does develop so don’t worry if you think it looks a little bit pinkish.

For the red cakes with the white stars

Spread each cupcake with enough red icing to cover the top of the cake, then with your piping bag, pipe 5 white stars on top of the red icing.

For the white cakes with the red sprinkles

Spread each cupcake with enough white icing to cover the top of the cake, then top with the red sprinkles.

 

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Raisin, Banana and Apple Cake

Raisin, Banana and Apple Cake

 

I’m always looking for delicious cakes that are “somewhat healthy” and that kids can take to school. The cake is nice and moist because it’s got apple puree and mashed banana in it. This is a very easy and quick cake to make and also good to portion and store in the freezer.

 

Ingredients:

1¼ cups chopped raisins

2 cups self-raising flour

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

½ cup soft brown sugar

½ cup freshly cooked apples that have been pureed

1 egg

250ml (1 cup) milk

3 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 ripe banana, mashed

2 tablespoons rolled oats

1 tbsp soft brown sugar, extra

 

Instructions:

Place the raisins in a bowl, cover with boiling water, set aside for 30 minutes, then drain.

Sift the self-raising cinnamon and soft brown sugar into a large bowl.

Mix the apple, egg and milk in a bowl. Stir in the oil and mashed banana. Stir the apple mixture and raisins into the flour with a large spoon until just combined. The mixture will look lumpy. Do not over mix.

Preheat the oven to 200°C. Line a 24cm loaf tin with baking paper. Pour the mixture into the tin and sprinkle with the rolled oats combined with the sugar.

Bake for 30 minutes, or until cooked through. Leave in the tin for 5 minutes before turning onto a wire rack to cool.

 

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Carrot Cake

Carrot Cake

 

 

I’m guilty of indulging in a “little” cake sometimes…actually, let’s be real – often! So I don’t feel so guilty about eating cake, I’ll often opt for something that doesn’t have a thousand calories in it. Bill Granger’s carrot cake is so delicious and moist, and if you add the cream cheese frosting well it’s to die for!! If you want to send this to school, just take out the nut and substitute with pumpkin or sunflower seeds.

If you’re an armature baker and you don’t have all the wiz bang equipment, then this cake is one to try because all you need is a few bowls, a grater and a wooden spoon.

 

Ingredients:

1 1/3 cups of plain flour

3 teaspoons of baking powder

1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon

1 1/3 cups of grated carrot

1 ¼ cups soft brown sugar

3 eggs

1 cup of sunflower oil

¾ cup sultanas

¾ cup roughly chopped walnuts

zest of 1 orange

 

Instructions:

Preheat your oven to 170°C. Lightly grease a loaf tin.

Sift the flour, baking powder and cinnamon in a large bowl, then stir the carrot through.

Whisk the sugar and eggs in another bowl. If you don’t need electric beaters, a fork will be fine. Slowly whisk in the oil. Pour into the dry ingredients and mix till just combined. Fold in the sultanas, walnuts and orange zest.

Pour into the tin and bake for 1 – 1 ¼ hours. Test if the cake is cooked by inserting a skewer into the centre of the cake, if it comes out clean then it’s ready. Leave in the tin to cool for 10minutes before turning out onto a wire rake to completely cool.

 

Cream Cheese Frosting

Ingredients:

1 cup of cream cheese softened

30 grams of unsalted butter, softened

1 teaspoon of vanilla essence

1 cup of icing sugar sifted

 

Instructions:

Beat the cream cheese, butter and vanilla until it’s a smooth consistency. Gradually add the icing sugar and beat until smooth. Again here, don’t worry it you don’t’ have electric beaters, just use a fork. Spread over the cake once it’s completely cooled.

 

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Banana and Date Bread

Banana and Date Bread

I’ve become slightly obsessed with baking banana bread in Singapore, because coming from Australia where nearly every café has banana bread, it’s just not found here, so I do it myself!

This is a great recipe as it has no nuts in it, so perfect for school lunch boxes. If I’m making this for guests, I’ll often add ½ cup of roughly chopped walnuts or pecans as it gives it a great texture. Banana bread is perfect to slice and freeze in individual portions.

Remember, the older the banana’s the better, so don’t be afraid if they are almost black – still use them!

 

Ingredients:

125 grams of unsalted butter, softened

1 cup soft brown sugar

2 eggs

1 ½ cups all-purpose plain flour, sifted

1 teaspoon baking powder, sifted

½ teaspoon bicarbonate of soda, sifted

¼ teaspoon of ground nutmeg

¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 ½ cups mashed banana (roughly 4-5 bananas)

¼ cup of maple syrup

1 cup chopped dates

 

Instructions:

Preheat the oven to 160°C.

Place the butter and sugar in a bowl and with an electric mixer beat until pale and creamy. Gradually add one egg at a time and beat well.

Fold through the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda, nutmeg and cinnamon and stir well to combine.

Stir in the banana, maple syrup and bananas.

Spoon the mixture into a lined and greased loaf tin – roughly 32cm. Bake for 1 hour and 10 minutes or until cooked through when you test with a skewer. Allow the banana bread to cool in the tin before turning it out onto a wire rake.

 

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Nonna’s Almond Biscotti

Almond Biscotti
Almond Biscotti

 

These biscotti are definitely one of Nonna’s specialties! Her pantry is always stocked with jars full. If you think you can’t bake or make biscuits, just give this recipe a go, it’s not hard at all. The key to this, is making sure you beat the eggs and sugar enough, if you do this your biscuits will taste so good!

 

Ingredients:

6 eggs at room temperature

1 ¼ cups of caster sugar

1 teaspoon of almond essence

1 teaspoon of vanilla extract

3 ½ cups of plain flour

1 cup of whole almonds

 

Instructions:

Preheat your oven to 180 degrees C.

In an electric mixer, beat the eggs and caster sugar. Beat for 10-15 minutes on high. Your mixture should be fluffy and creamy by now.

Fold in the almond essence, vanilla extract, plain flour and almonds and mix till well combined.

Line 3 long rectangular tins with baking paper and evenly spread the mixture into each.

Bake for 30 minutes. Test it’s cooked all the way through by inserting a cake tester into the centre.

Leave too cool on a wire rack.

Once cooled, cut into thin slices using a very sharp knife.

Prepare a baking tray by lining it with baking paper. Place slices of the biscuits on a baking tray, trying not to overlap.

Place trays back in the oven on a very low heat, about 100 degrees for 35 minutes or until dry and crisp.

Store in an airtight jar and they will last for months.

 

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