Ok, so here's the deal.

I'm giving you guys my most treasured recipe.

Bananabread.

Who doesn't love bananabread??!!

   Well this bananabread recipe is the one to knock your socks off! Seriously, a guy friend of mine almost ate the entire loaf when I brought it over to his house!

Now, this recipe does take quite a bit of time to make, but the results are worth it!

Like it as a breakfast food and not a dessert? Remove half of the sugar (I get rid of half and half of the brown and white leaving me with a quarter each) and some of the chocolate chips, and it's perfect for breakfast! It's perfect, not too sweet, nor is it a normal bread.

Instructions
1: Preheat oven to 350*F. Line 9x5x3-inch loaf pan with waxpaper (or you can spray pan with nonstick cooking spray)

2: Beat butter with electric mixer until light and fluffy. Add both sugars; beat well. Add egg, egg whites and vanilla; beat until well blended. Add mashed banana, and mix until throughly blended.

3: Combine flour, baking soda, salt and baking powder in bowl. Add flour mixture to butter mixture, alternately with coconut milk. Add walnuts to batter, and mix well.

4: Pour batter evenly into prepared loaf pan. Bake until browned and toothpick inserted near center comes out clean, about 1 hour 15 minutes.
Recipe
Ingredients
5 tabelspoons butter
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 large egg
2 egg whites
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cups mashed banana (2 large ones will do)
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup coconut milk*** (heavy cream if you don't have coconut milk)
1/3 cup chopped walnuts (pecans will do)
However many chocolate chips you desire


Instructions for baking on the left.

However, if you decide to use coconut milk, after about 50 of that hour fifteen (or until the top is a nice brown), put tinfoil over the pan to bake the bottom more, as the insides will usually be underbaked at this point.

***The coconut milk doesn't leave any coconut flaver, but makes the bread more moist; keeping it soft for a few days longer than with the cream. And the coconut milk doesn't have nearly as many calories as the cream, so you can have this bread for breakfast.
 
 
Picture
Photo from: dashoffood.com
   Now, can any of you guess what the special ingredient in this photos is?? I'll give you a hint. It's the brown stuff on top of the ice cream.
   Anyone??

   Before you read any further, and want to comment, go down and write what you think it is in the comment section then come back up and read the answer.

Wrote it down?

Well here is the answer.

Balsamic Vinegar.

Crazy eh?

   Now, before you go "YUCK!!" or "WHAT?!" hear me out =) First off, it's an Italian dessert, and we all know that the Italians love their oil and vinegar. So why not put vinegar on your dessert?
   The second thing is that you don't use cheap vinegar. You use dessert vinegar, which is way more expensive, and sweeter that your average bottle. Like "cheap" expensive balsamic vinegar starts at $20 for a 5-year-aged, 150 ml bottle. Why is it more expensive when it's only aged 5 years? Because vinegar is like wine and cheese. The longer it's aged, the more expensive it is.
   The third thing is it doesn't taste like vinegar on ice cream like you'd think. In the words of my dad, it tastes a little like blueberry syrup instead on vinegar (at least the dessert vinegar does). And you don't eat 3 scoops of this dessert. You eat a small bowl full. It's not somthing you consume in large quantities, but in small portions... around one scoop.
   And while some people like the dessert vinegar is prefered by my mom and dad, I actually like the sharp tang of normal balsamic vinegar. I like vinegar in general, but for those of you who don't, but want to try something different, this is the dessert for you =) Just use dessert vinegar.

   Now you'll want to try it. Go ahead. People will think you weird at first. Like you probably do me. But it's one of those things that you have to try before judging. I will say it's an acquired taste, so don't make a bunch, or buy a really expensive bottle at first!  Let me know if you do try it, and what you think =)

*oh, and it's really only good on vanilla ice cream. Not really on chocolate, though you could try a teaspoon before making that assumption. But do it after having it with the vanilla ;)
 
 
Picture
Photo from: laurelslittlecorner.blogspot.com
   Ok, so I know almost everyone has their own recipe of shortbread, but I thought I'd still share my own recipe. Because shortbread are just that yummy! These are a staple for my household come Christmastime. And yes, I'm just a liiiiitle late on the delivery... enjoy!
Recipe

Ingredients
1 lb. soft butter
1 cup of icing sugar
1/2 cup corn starch
3 cups flour
1 teaspoon vanilla

1: Whip soft butter and icing sugar together until fluffy. Add the corn starch, flour, and vanilla. Beat until very fluffy.

2: Roll into small balls, making sure not to over work the dough, onto buttered cookie sheets.
Optional* Press fork onto balls to flatten them out.

3: Bake in preheated oven (325*F) for 10-15 minutes. Eat when desired.
 
 
   This has got to be one of the easiest, more complicated recipes ever! Now if you didn't understand what I just said in the last sentence, it's a super easy recipe, but it sounds and tastes complicated (aka, like it took a lot of work and time!).
  
   Because there are four parts to the recipe, and you have to bake the crust first, I'd consider this a more complicated recipe (more than other ones I've baked).

   It's a sweet treat, but not tooo sweet. Definitely one of those recipes to use if you want to impress someone with a professional tasting dessert.

Bake time: 45 min.
Total time: 1:00
Picture
Image from mybestcookbook.wordpress.com
1: In a medium bowl, combine flour and brown sugar. Add butter until mixture is crumbly. Press evenly into a 13"x9"x2" pan, making sure the crust curls up the edges of the pan.. Bake 15 min, or until lightly browned at 350*.

2: While that is baking, In an electric mixer, beat cream cheese with 1/2 cup sugar until smooth. Add eggs, one at a time, with vanilla after. Blend until smooth. The smoother the better! Pour over warm crust.

3:In a small bowl, stir together chopped apples, 2 tbsp of sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg. Add apples evenly on top of cream cheese mixture.

4: Mix together in a bowl, brown sugar, flour, quick oats, and butter until mixture is crumbly. Sprinkle evenly overtop of apples on the cheese mixture. Bake 30 minutes at 350* or until filing is set.
Picture
Image taken from thegallerygourmet.net.
Ingredients
Crust:
2    cups    flour
1/2  cup     brown sugar
1    cup butter
Cheesecake:
2    cups    cream cheese (or two individual bricks)
1/2  cup     sugar
2    large    eggs
1    tsp       vanilla
Apples:
3    apples
2    tbsp    w/b sugar
1/2  tsp    nutmeg
2    tbsp    cinnamon
Streusel Topping:
1    cup    brown sugar
1    cup    flour
1/2  cup   quick oats
1/2  cup    butter

1/2  cup caramel warmed, and drizzled on top.
 
 
I must tell you a secret.

It is a dark secret.

But not because it's bad.

In fact, it's very good.

It's dark because it is DARK CHOCOLATE ESPRESSO THUMBPRINT COOKIES.

Some of the best, greatest, most chocolate, smooth, wonderful, small, yummy, chocolaty, rich, fattening, wonderful, chocolate cokies in the entire world.

And I mean that.

These cookies are the BEST for wintertime, especially if you put crushed up peperming candy canes on top. But I'm not here to talk about candy canes, I'm here because of a good friend of mine, named Chocolate. And Espresso. How about Espresso Chocolate?

While the cookeis are good, the dough being sweet, but not overly sweet, it's the inside filling that makes these cookeis special.

The inside is smooth, creamy, kind of like the inside of those round Lindor chocolates that are sold. Only in cookie form.

Don't worry, the calorie count is worth the cookie. And because they're small, you can have two of them. I challenge you to make them.

If you do make them, leave a comment telling me what you think of this recipe :)
Picture











Image and recipe copyright to Betty Crocker.

Recipe

Ingredients
3/4 cups sugar
3/4 cup butter, softened
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 egg
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons baking cocoa (sifted)
1/4 teaspoon salt

1: Heat oven to 350*F. Beat sugar, butter, vnailla and eggin large bowl with electric mixer. Stir in flour, cocoa and salt.

2: Shape dough by rounded teaspoonfuls into 1-inch balls. Place about 2 inches apart on ungreases (or greased) cookie sheet. Press thumb or small spoon into center of each cookie, but do not press all the way to the cookies sheet.

3: bake 7-11 minutes, or until edges are firm. Quickly remake indentations with the spoon while still warm. Immediately remove from cookie sheet to wire rack. Fill with espresso filling*

Espresso Filling

Ingredients
1/4 cup whipping cream (heavy)
2 teaspoons espresso coffe (dry)
1 cup chocolate chips
1 tablespoo coffee flavered liquer (optional)

1: Mix whipping cream and instand coffee in 1-quard saucepan. Heat over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until steaming and coffee is dissolved. Remove from heat; stir in chocolate chips until melted. Stir in liquear (optional). Cool about 10 minutes or until thickened.

2: Spoon 1/2 teaspoon espresso filling into indentation in each cookies. Top with candy sprinkels (optional).