Happy Easter! Zack and I collaborated on a brunch menu today. I wanted to try a strata (bread vessel filled with baked eggs), he wanted banana muffins.
First, I tried to find a great banana bread recipe. I did lots of internet research and picked one by Molly Wizenberg (Orangette), which called for yogurt. Then at the last minute I thought that banana bread would be something I could find in my grandma's church cookbook. The second recipe on the page was actually submitted by my Grandma Verna! Therefore, I had to make that recipe. And, I had the cutest silicone muffin tin in the shapes of spring flowers. Here is her recipe verbatim. I added chocolate chips and my muffins turned out really cute.
Grandma Verna's Banana Bread
1/2 cup shortening (I used butter, of course)
1 c. sugar
1 tsp baking soda, dissolved in 1 T. sour cream or milk
4 good-sized bananas, mashed
2 c. flour
1/8 tsp salt
chopped nuts (opt)
Mix together and bake in a moderate oven for 1 hour.
Seriously, now I know why I'm so bad at writing recipes, it runs in the blood. "Good-sized" bananas? "Moderate" oven? How is someone supposed to know what that means?
For the strata, I bought a nice loaf of ciabatta. Hollowed it out and filled it with sauteed mushrooms and asparagus, and topped with grated parmesan cheese. You are supposed to pre-bake the hollowed out bread shell to avoid too much egg-seepage. I forgot that part. But it still turned out pretty yummy.
1 loaf ciabatta
1/2 cup water or milk
Herbs - such as parsley and basil
Salt and pepper
Cut the top off the ciabatta and hollow it out. Brush with olive oil and bake for a few minutes. Fill with mixture of eggs, veggies, herbs, and spices. Top with grated parm. Bake on foil covered sheet for about 30 minutes at 350 degrees.
We enjoyed our banana muffins and strata with yogurt and strawberries, coffee, and mimosas. It was a great start to a beautiful Minnesota Easter Sunday.
PS - went for a long walk around Lake Nokomis this afternoon and totally saw grown adults hunting easter eggs in their yard. It was awesome.