Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Zucchini Bread

When overloaded with zucchini, what's a person to do- bake zucchini bread of course!!

If you haven't noticed already from here, we are huge fans of quick breads.  First of all, well, they are quick! You get an almost instant gratification- stir a bunch of ingredients in a bowl, dump into pans, bake, cool and eat.  No special equipment required and they are perfect for little helpers in the kitchen because they can almost do the entire thing themselves!

This  recipe is one I borrowed from my Mother-in-law, Judy.  Every summer along with an armful of ripped zucchini's she also brings over a wonderful loaf of this delicious bread.  It never lasts long in our house!  It is so, so good!  It is lightly sweetened and studded with lots of raisins which is how we love bread in our house. We aren't big nut-in-bakery people in our house.  But of course you can go either way.  This year I asked if I could share the recipe with all of you, and you lucky people- She said yes!  Thank you Judy!

Zucchini Bread
3 cups All Purpose Flour
3 eggs
2 cups sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups grated zucchini
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 cup nuts or raisins (optional)
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup sour cream

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Grease and flour just the bottom of two loaf pans.

Sift flour into a large bowl and add all dry ingredients and set aside. In a medium sized bowl cream eggs and sugar and then add all of the wet ingredients. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix together well. Pour into the two prepared loaf pans.

Bake 1 hour and some minutes, (at least an hour, but the minutes will depend on your oven. Judy's cooks in exactly 1 hour while her sister's oven takes a bit longer) or until a toothpick comes out clean. Keep an eye on it.

Cool in loaf pans for 15 minutes. Turn out onto wire rack and allow to cool completely. Store in fridge or wrap well and freeze.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Traditional Meatloaf

Meatloaf.  Comfort food at its best.  I just love it!  And for something so simple, people sure have lots of different recipes for it!  some use just beef, some add veal to the mix.  Others cover it in ketchup or BBQ sauce.  And other recipes call for diced veggies, like peppers, carrots or even corn and black beans to be added in.  Sometime you are directed to use oatmeal and other call for crackers or breadcrumbs.  And while all of these recipes are delicious, and trust me, I try every single one I find, This one is the most simple and to us the most delicious.  Sometimes just the most basic of things turn out to be the very best.

Be sure to follow the directions to remove the meatloaf from the roasting pan right away or otherwise it will begin to soak up all the greases that were removed during cooking- no one wants greasy meatloaf- yuck!  This recipe is taken from Trisha Yearwood's cookbook Georgia Cooking in an Oklahoma Kitchen, but honestly it probably most resembles all of our mom's- before recipes started to get complicated!

My pictures only show one loaf.  That is because, well, we just couldn't wait  and gobbled up the other one before I could photograph it!

Traditional Meatloaf
2 lbs lean ground beef
20 Saltine crackers
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1/4 cup ketchup
1 Tablespoon yellow mustard
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Gently mix the beef, cracker crumbs, egg, ketchup, mustard, salt, pepper, and onion until blended.  Shape the mixture into 2 loaves and place side by side crosswise in a 9x13-inch pan.  Bake the loaves for 1 hour, or until they are browned.  Transfer to a platter immediately and allow the loaves to cool slightly and firm up before slicing.  Garnish if desired with fresh herbs.

recipe from Georgia Cooking in an Oklahoma Kitchen by Trisha Yearwood


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