Sunday, July 29, 2012


Cornbread is a side dish I like to serve often- such as with chili, or this beef & bean casserole. However, I could never settle on which recipe to use.  I went through MANY recipes before finding this on, and adapting it a little bit.  This is exactly what I like in a cornbread!  It's quick to make, uses normal ingredients, and is light & fluffy.  It's not too dense or too cakey.  Someday I'll probably try making this a little healthier (like using some wheat flour), but for now, I'm happy to have a cornbread recipe that I can count on!!

After mixing the dry ingredients in a bowl, you make a well in the middle and add the wet ingredients to that.

You want to mix the batter just until everything is incorporated.

Printable version here

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup cornmeal
1/3 cup white sugar
4 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 cup buttermilk*
2 eggs
1/4 cup butter, melted

1. Mix dry ingredients, make a well, add buttermilk & eggs and stir until almost combined.  Add melted butter & mix until just combined.

2. Pour into a greased 9x9 inch metal baking dish.  Bake at 425º for 20 minutes.

*You may substitute 1 cup milk + 1 tbsp. white vinegar or lemon juice for the buttermilk. Combine and let sit for 5 minutes before using in the recipe.

Recipe source:

Why I love it? It has the perfect flavor & texture that I'm looking for in cornbread- soft (with slightly crisp edges), and just a little sweet.  It comes together quickly, too!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Cranberry Oat Bread

This bread has turned into one of my family's favorites!  It's healthy (low sugar, low fat, and whole grain)- but it doesn't taste healthy, know what I mean?  It's flavorful, hearty, and moist.  We love it with dried cranberries and pecans, but you could certainly swap those out for other ingredients if you'd like. 

In other news, I've been enjoying this summer with my kids & husband.  Since we finished our homeschooling year last month, we have: celebrated my oldest son's 8th birthday, done a lot of yard work/projects, gone swimming several times, and celebrated mine & my husband's 10th wedding anniversary!  We left the kids with the grandparents for 2 days and took a weekend trip to Victoria, BC.  It was great to get time away!  This is us eating lunch at a nice little pub.  It was fun not having to worry about if they had a kid's meal! :)

Cranberry Oat Bread
Printable version here

3/4 cup quick cooking oats
1 1/4 cups buttermilk
1 1/2 cups whole wheat pastry flour (or all-purpose)
1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 cup dried cranberries (or other small dried fruit)
1/4 cup chopped pecans, optional

1. Combine the oats and buttermilk in a medium-sized bowl.  Stir to mix well, and set aside (only until it's needed in the next step- if you wait too long, too much of the liquid will have been absorbed).

2. Combine the flour, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large bowl, and stir to mix well.  Add the buttermilk mixture and vanilla, and stir just until the dry ingredients are moistened.  Fold in the fruit and nuts.

3. Coat an 8x4 inch loaf pan with cooking spray.  Spread the batter in the pan, and bake at 325º for 40-42 minutes, or just until a toothpick inserted in the center of the loaf comes out clean. (Alternately, you can turn this into 12 muffins, baked at 350º for 18 minutes.)

4. Remove the bread from the oven, and let sit for 10 minutes.  Turn the loaf onto a wire rack, and cool before slicing.  Serving suggestion- this bread is great toasted and spread with cream cheese.

Recipe source: adapted from "Secrets of Fat-Free Cooking"

Why I love it? It's lowfat, hearty (but not dense), and flavorful!  I just love this bread with cream cheese.  It keeps fairly well, and I have also frozen it for later.  Like most quick breads, it freezes and thaws wonderfully!