Happy September! It’s still so hot out, but I can’t hold off any longer on the pumpkin recipes.
I love the fall season. Pretty sure there’s nothing better than fall colors and decorations, the smell of crisp air, comfy sweaters/scarves/socks, changing leaves, autumn scented candles, and pumpkin everything.
I’m very excited because I’ve got a pumpkin basket coming in the mail! I’ll be recipe testing soon. 🙂
My freshman year of college, I used to live for coming home to my mom’s banana bread.
I would force her to make it and I think she loved making it for me just as much as I loved eating it.
Sometimes, I would come home and it would already be baking in the oven and the smell was like… rich waves of heaven.. haha!
But really, I thought she was a baking genius. When she showed me the recipe she uses, I decided to try it myself and add some streusel. It of course wasn’t as good as my moms, but it’s still a really awesome recipe.
“Extreme” Walnut Banana Bread with Streusel Topping
I’m having some technical difficulties with my blog right now. I tried adding a new header, but for some reason I keep getting an ‘internal error’ and my picture won’t upload. Until I can get a picture to upload, I’m testing a new format. Let me know what you think of it.
Food photography is something that every food blogger has probably done some research on.
I am by no means a professional, but I have picked up a few tips along the way and in my photography class I took last semester, so I want to share with you guy’s what I’ve learned!! Add me to the list of 3 million photography tips on the net. 🙂
1. Use natural light. This is the best piece of advice that helped me. I was using flash in all of my photos and it was not pretty. Wait until you have a great amount of light flowing in from a window, set up your food, and shoot! 2. Get down on your foods level. Make sure that you get down on the same level as your food when you’re photographing. You’ll feel really weird all bent over, but the results are worth it! 3. Don’t use too many props, but do use some. I usually use a cute material and maybe a glass of milk or a fork or something. Using too much distracts from the actual food. 4. Get close. Food photography is all about using macro. The more detail we can see, the more we drool. 5. Focus on the food, blur the background. Sometimes backgrounds can be distracting, so it’s important to use a shallow depth of field. 6. Learn how to use Photoshop. Even the best photographers do a lot of their work in Photoshop. Even www.picnik.com will work! The tools that help me the most are the Color Balance tool, the Exposure tool, and the Focal Soften tool. 7. Take tips from the pros. Just look at your favorite food photographers pictures and try to mimic them. Some of my favorites: Joy the Baker, Karly at Buns in My Oven, Deb at Smitten Kitchen, Ree at The Pioneer Woman, Jessica at How Sweet It Is. There are many, many more, but those are just a few! This is not a food photography site, but I have a friend who is a great photographer and you may be able to pick up some tips from his site, too: Matt Rogers.
So, I had sour cream left over from that delicious Red Velvet Cake and 4 almost-rotting bananas and had no choice but to make some banana bread. Although I said it’s boring and I’ve already made it a few times, I use a different recipe every time. I must say this is probably one of my favorites!! I actually made it into muffins, but those all got eaten before I could even photograph them! That should tell you how good these are. Plus, this recipe is from Smitten Kitchen, so it’s automatically good. Mmmm!!
Ingredients: 3 to 4 ripe bananas, smashed 1/3 cup melted salted butter ¾ cup light brown sugar 1 egg, beaten 1 teaspoon vanilla 1 teaspoon baking soda Pinch of salt 1 teaspoon cinnamon ¼ cup sour cream 2 cups of flour 1 ½ cups chocolate chips
Directions: 1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. With a wooden spoon, mix butter and sour cream into the mashed bananas in a large mixing bowl. 2. Mix in the sugar, egg, vanilla and cinnamon. 3. Sprinkle the baking soda and salt over the mixture and mix in. Add the flour last, mix. Mix in chocolate chips. Pour mixture into a buttered 4×8 inch loaf pan. 4. Bake for 50 minutes to one hour, or until a tester comes out clean. Cool on a rack. Remove from pan and slice to serve. Note: I split this into two mini-loaf pans. It took 45 minutes to bake two perfect halves, but of course, may run longer or shorter in your oven.
Sometimes I get on Blogger with the intentions of posting a really awesome recipe, I get to the “New Post” page and realize, “Wow, I really have nothing interesting to write about.”
And then I sit here… and I sit here… and I sit here… and still have nothing interesting to write. Sometimes I wonder if people even read what I write, since this is a food blog and most of you are most likely here for a recipe… and then I start feeling sorry for myself because nobody wants to read what I have to write. (That’s called catastrophizing…don’t do that.) But then I snap out of it and realize that if you all just wanted a recipe, you could go to AllRecipes.com or Food.com and I feel better.
But, then I still have nothing to write about, but, hey, at least I’ve taken up 5 minutes. Please tell me I’m not the only person who does this. If I am… lie to me.
So here I am today with an awesome recipe and no story to go behind it except the pity party of a girl with writer’s block.
Here’s what I can tell you: This is banana bread. It’s really good. Like, the bomb. And it has caramelized pecans in it… basically candy. Really moist candied banana bread that will make your house smell like a big, hot caramel-y banana. How appealing does that sound? I’ll work on it.
Do you guys ever have those days when you can’t think of anything to write??
1 tablespoonbutter2 tablespoons sugar1 cup pecan halves2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
1. Move oven rack to low position so that tops of pans will be in center of oven. Heat oven to 350°F. Grease bottoms only of 2 loaf pans, 8 1/2×4 1/2×2 ½ inches, or 1 loaf pan, 9x5x3 inches. 2. Add the tablespoon of butter and let melt in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the sugar, pecans, and cinnamon, and mix until the pecans have been coated and the sugar has started to stick. Set aside and let cool.3. Mix sugar and butter in large bowl. Stir in eggs until well blended. Add bananas, buttermilk and vanilla. Beat until smooth. Stir in flour, baking soda and salt just until moistened. Stir in nuts. Pour into pans. 4. Bake 8-inch loaves about 1 hour, 9-inch loaf about 1 ¼ hours, or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes. Loosen sides of loaves from pans; remove from pans and place top side up on wire rack. Cool completely, about 2 hours, before slicing. (Good luck!) Wrap tightly and store at room temperature up to 4 days, or refrigerate up to 6 days.