Thursday, March 31, 2016

Easy Pineapple Cake...

It truly is easy.  E.  Z.  You don't even need a mixer for the cake, just stir it together.  The texture after baking isn't light and cake-like, it is very dense and moist.  

You don't really need a mixer for the frosting either, but I used my hand mixer today.

Easy Pineapple Cake
2 cups flour
2 cups sugar
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 tsp vanilla
2 eggs (beaten)
1 20 ounce can crushed pineapple in juice (do not drain)

Preheat oven to 350° F.  

Stir together the dry ingredients, then add the eggs, vanilla, and pineapple with its juice.  Stir by hand till mixed well.  Pour into a greased 9" x 13" pan.  Bake for 30 to 40 minutes, till golden brown on top and a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.  Cool completely.

Frosting for Easy Pineapple Cake
1 (8 ounce) brick of cream cheese (softened to room temperature)
1 stick butter (softened)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup powdered sugar
1 cup pecans (chopped)

Stir (or mix) together cream cheese, butter, and vanilla.  Add the powdered sugar and stir (or mix) till well incorporated and smooth.  Stir in pecans.  Spread frosting evenly over cooled cake in the pan.

Monday, March 14, 2016

Beef Koftas and Yogurt Flatbread...

1.5 pound ground beef
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 small white onion, finely diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 Tblsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp Tajin Fruit Seasoning (ground chile & lime)
1 egg

(If making Yogurt Flatbread, prepare dough and set it to rest while preparing Beef Koftas.)

Heat oil in non-stick skillet over medium high heat.  Add diced onion and minced garlic, and cook just till transparent.  Add cumin and Tajin, and stir to mix.  Place ground beef in bowl, add the onion, garlic, and seasonings, and 1 egg.  Mix well by hand.  Shape into sausage shapes.  Place non-stick skillet back over medium-high heat, and place the koftas in pan, turning to brown all sides.  When evenly browned, place koftas into an oven safe dish with cover, and put in 325° F oven to cook through while cooking flatbreads.

Serve with Yogurt Flatbread, mixed salad greens, diced tomato or halved cherry tomatoes, thinly sliced cucumber, thinly sliced red onion, ripe olives, and yogurt dressing.

Yogurt Flatbread Ingredients (makes 6):
2 cups all purpose flour
3 tsp baking powder
1.5 tsp salt
1 cup plain Greek yogurt

Whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt.  Add in yogurt, and mix with hand till well blended.  Knead in bowl for another five minutes.  If sticky, add a little more flour.  Wrap in plastic wrap, and let rest at room temperature for thirty minutes while preparing koftas.

Divide into six even portions.  On floured surface, and with a floured rolling pin, roll very thin.  Place non-stick pan over medium high heat and spray with olive oil cooking spray.  Place a dough round into hot pan, cook for 40 to 60 seconds till bubbled up and bottom is nicely browned, then turn and cook second side for a further 40 to 60 seconds.  Continue with remaining dough.

Yogurt Dressing Ingredients:
1 cup Greek yogurt
1 tsp honey
1/2 tsp Tajin Fruit Seasoning
salt, pepper, and garlic to taste

My notes:  These were based on Lamb Koftas and Yoghurt Flatbread from Homemade Takeaway by Julie Goodwin and blogged about by Joolz.  I made some accidental and some necessary substitutions.  Even so, they turned out quite tasty, so though I still want to make them like Joolz did, I also didn't want to forget how I made them tonight as they were a big hit with the family.

Sunday, March 6, 2016

Banana Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting...

Original cake recipe found at The Novice Housewife.
I changed the pan type and cooking time and added frosting.

● 3 cups  all-purpose flour
● 2 tsp baking soda
● 1/2 tsp salt

●● 2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
●● 2 cups sugar
●● 2 large eggs
●● 1 1/2 – 1 3/4 cups bananas (mashed, I used 5 very ripe bananas)
●● 1 cup sour cream or plain yogurt
●● 2 tsp vanilla extract

● Place flour, baking soda, and salt in a bowl and whisk together.

●● In a separate bowl, mix butter and sugar until smooth.  Add eggs one at a time, mixing after each addition.  Add bananas and mix until well blended.  Add half of the dry ingredients, mix well; the sour cream and vanilla, mix well; and then the rest of the dry ingredients, and mix well.  Pour into a greased 9” x 13” pan.  Bake in a 350° F oven for 45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.

Cool in the pan.  When completely cool, spread cream cheese frosting over cake.

Cream Cheese Frosting:
8 oz cream cheese (softened)
½ cup butter (softened)
3 cups powdered sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract

Cream butter and cream cheese together well.  Add vanilla and powdered sugar and mix till smooth.

My notes:  I got distracted and left mine in the oven for an hour.  It got a bit overcooked on the bottom, but it tasted fine.