Blueberry Raspberry Zucchini Bread

Sliced

I have this thing about breakfast.  Especially on the weekdays. 

 

I need it to be something easy, but filling, quick, yet hearty.

Flour

Not always the easiest thing to find.  I also prefer to eat breakfast sitting at my desk at work, rather then before I leave in the morning.  So no eggs and toast here.  Seriously iced coffee and a pastry makes me sooooo happy.

 

I used to live by this amazing coffee shop called Crema.  I loved this place.  It reminded me of Alterra in Milwaukee, which I was desperately missing upon moving out of Milwaukee.  Plus they brewed Alterra coffee.  Back to the point.  I would stop there on my way to work and get coffee and a blueberry danish sometimes.  Iced coffee in the summer, hot in the winter.  The danish were sooooo good.  I’ve yet to find anywhere on this side of town with as good a morning pastry. 

Wet_and_dr

So occasionally, I make something myself.  I’m fairly certain the danish I love so much are none too healthy, so I’m always trying to dream up a recipe that will satisfy that craving for baked goods in the morning, without feeling like I ate dessert for breakfast.

Berries_in_batter

I’ve had berries in my house non-stop for the past few weeks, well pretty much since berry season started in Wisconsin.  I have them growing in the backyard, and inevitably I buy more at the farmers market every week.  This week I had blueberries, strawberries and raspberries.  I also had some frozen shredded zucchini from last growing season in my freezer.  I thought combining the three in a baked good would be a great balance, as well as healthy and packed full of nutrients.

 

 

This is the part where I jot down the recipe super quick while making it up.  Sometimes I can’t read them when I go to type them up later.  It’s time for a laptop in this house.

Crw_2263

I went easy on the sugar and butter in this recipe, but think I could have gone with even less sugar.  Try cutting it down when you make it and see what you think.  The berries add tons of natural sweetness and the zucchini takes on this wonderfully squashy/pumpkin quality when baked.

 

You could also easily substitute any number of fruits in this bread.  Apples?  Sounds great!  Peaches?  Divine.  Take what you have around the house and make your self a loaf of breakfast for the week.

 

Baked_bread

 Blueberry Raspberry Zucchini Bread


            Ingredients  

 

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened

1/2 cup sugar (like I said, try less)

2 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla

3 tablespoons sour cream

1/2 cup blueberries

1/2 cup raspberries

1/2 cup shredded zucchini

 

 

For the topping:

1/2 cup flour

1/4 cup brown sugar

1/4 cup white sugar

4 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold

 

 

            Directions

 

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  In a small bowl mix flour, baking powder and salt.  Set aside.

 

2.  In a large mixing bowl, cream together butter and sugar until fluffy.  Add eggs one at a time mixing well after each addition.  Add vanilla and sour cream.  Slowly add flour mixture until well mixed.  Add shredded zucchini.  Carefully fold in blueberries and raspberries. 

 

3.  Prepare the topping:  In a small bowl, mix flour and sugars.  Chop cold butter into small chunks and add to flour and sugar.  Using your hands, work butter and flour together until it forms a pea like crumble.

 

4.  Pour batter into a greased loaf pan.  Spread crumble topping over.  Bake for approximately 1 hour until topping is golden brown and a toothpick inserted comes out clean.

 

 

 

 

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Busy town summertime

Poppy_cupcakes

I’ve been neglecting you.  I’m sorry.  These things happen.

 

 

It’s just, well I’ve had writers block lately.  It’s not that I haven’t been cooking or baking.   It’s just I haven’t been writing about it.  I think I’ve simply been too busy.  I’ve done a lot and I’ve done a lot of nothing.   It’s been wonderful and exhausting.

 

 

So here’s my summation of everything that I’ve been up to lately.

 

There was ice cream again, lots of it, it was insane and delicious. 

Banana_ice_cream

There was banana.

Raspberry_swirl_ice_cream

And raspberry swirl.

 

There were cupcakes upon cupcakes upon cupcakes.  Most of which didn’t even make it on here. 

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I made little berry trifles.

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 There was a 40th anniversary party for my parents involving cupcakes and cookies.  They were pretty tasty.  I used this recipe for the cupcakes and this for the frosting.  Here’s the recipe I used for the cookies.

Dessert_table

I’ve been gardening.  

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 My garden is out of control.  I made the mistake of planting pumpkins in a not so large space and they have taken over.   So have the Japanese beetles.  They are eating every thing.  I’m ready to hose down everything with bleach.  Will that work?

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I made homemade pizza, and toast with tomatoes and goat cheese for breakfast.

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 I got to spend some quality time with my husband.

 

 

It’s been good.

 

I promise to be a better friend.  I’ll make sure to post yummy pictures even if I run out of things to say.  Unless I go on vacation.  I want to go on vacation.  Right now.  Will you take me on vacation?  Well then I guess I’ll settle for more ice cream.

 

 

Raspberry Swirl Ice Cream

 

            Ingredients

 

1 1/2 cups cream

1/4 cup agave nectar

2 tablespoons sugar

2 tablespoons corn syrup

1 tablespoon liquor (I used strawberry/raspberry infused rum)

7 egg yolks

Raspberry purée

 

            Directions

 

1.  Heat cream, agave nectar and sugar in a medium saucepan until just simmering.

 

2.  Prepare an ice bath.

 

3.  In another bowl whisk egg yolks and corn syrup.  Slowly add hot cream mixture to temper the eggs, whisking constantly, until cream is completely incorporated.  Return to pan on medium heat.  Cook approximately 2-3 minutes until mixture just starts to thicken and coats the back of a spoon.

 

4.  Immediately strain mixture into a glass bowl over ice bath, whisking occasionally until mixture is completely cooled.  Add liquor.  Transfer to ice cream maker and freeze according to manufacturers instructions.  Once it reaches soft serve consistency drizzle in desired amount of raspberry purée.  Freeze at least 4 hours before serving.

 

The best kind of sandwiches

Finished_sandwich

I’m kind of a complainer.

 

It’s sort of just a part of who I am.  Not cool, I know.  I’m working on it.

 

One of my favorite things to complain about is the heat.  Summer sucks when you’re me.

 

My favorite weather is overcast, slightly chilly and drizzling.  Score!  It’s perfect adorable dress, boots and leggings weather.

 

Img_1062

Check the dress, boots and leggings.

 

I love dresses.  Love, love, love.  I however do not love bare legs.  My thighs touch.  I eat calorie-loaded sweets occasionally.  I don’t go to the gym nearly enough.  And I HATE the way it feels when my thighs touch.  Not cool.  At all.  Don’t get me wrong; I have no problems with the way my legs look.  I’m no size 2 and I know it.  I own it.  But the whole thigh thing drives me bonkers.  So I enjoy leggings.  And tights.  Cool weather is perfect for these things.

 

There are however numerous things I love about the summer.  Fruit, vegetables, eating outside on a cool night, watching my dog try to cook himself in the backyard.  And no hassle, delicious, sandwiches with wonderfully fruity cocktails.  Love me some cocktails.

 

 

I’m a big fan of a good sandwich.  I think it’s an all too often terribly done concept.  There are so many amazing things you can do with sandwiches.  Sweet or savory, bread or wrap, hot or cold.

 

This sandwich is one of my favorites.  This bread makes this sandwich.  It’s soooo good.  You can just toast this bread and slather it with butter or cream cheese and it’s still amazing.  It’s from a local vendor called Riverbend Farm Bakery.  Alas, no website or I would link to it.  It’s cheddar and onion bread.  It’s completely out of this world.  They make rolls too.  I’m drooling right now.

 

I made a couple of sandwiches with it and then decided on the perfect combination.  

Grilling

It involves the grill.  And avocados.  And a side of potatoes and carrots.  No recipe needed here.  It’s a sandwich.  The potatoes and carrots are just that, with butter, salt and pepper and thyme.

Potatoes_and_carrots

I took this bread and a slice of cheese and turkey and grilled it.  Trust this.  It’s worth it.

 

Then I slathered it with mayo.

 

Next came the sliced tomatoes, avocado, bacon, and lettuce.

Ingrediesnts

I can think of about 10 other things that would be delicious on this sandwich too, but decided not to overwhelm it.

 

Make some sandwiches this summer.  Keep the oven off and the house cool.  And then eat two in a row.  Just because you can.  Throw some potatoes and carrots on the grill too and it’s pretty much perfection.

Finished_rum

And don’t forget a delicious cocktail.  It is summer after all.  For this one I made strawberry infused rum.  Sooooo delicious.  Short cut to strawberry mojito land.  Mint.  Club soda.  

Straining_strawberries

Strawberry infused rum.  A few fresh berries.  If you need some extra sweetness throw in some agave nectar.  Oh my god delicious.  The perfect companion on a summer night.  Drink up.

Strwaberries_in_rum

Strawberry Rum

 

Ingredients

 

1 pint fresh strawberries

Bottle of your favorite rum

 

Directions

 

1.  Chop strawberries.  Halved or quartered works best depending on the size of the berry.  Find a glass jar or bottle large enough to fit all of the berries.  Fill jar with berries.  Fill jar with enough rum to cover all berries.  Cap tightly.  Store in a dark place for at least 3 days and up to a week, agitating daily.

 

2.  Once your ready to use the rum, strain out the berries.  They will have lost all their color.  You may be tempted to use them for something else.  I don’t recommend it.  They are extremely alcoholic and not sweet at all.  Store in the refrigerator in an air tight glass jar for up to a month.

 

3.  Turn your rum into mojito deliciousness.  Take about 10 mint leaves and the juice of 1 lime.  Muddle together in a mortar and pestle.  It you don’t have one a large wooden spoon and a glass works too.  Mix mint and lime mixture with a shot of strawberry rum, club soda and a tablespoon of agave nectar.  Drink it up.

 

 

 

4th of July weekend

Strawberry_mojito

This weekend I did a lot.  A whole lot of nothing.  It was amazing.

 

Ok, so maybe it wasn’t nothing.

 

There was sweating it out in the Milkweed kitchen on Friday.  It was 101 degrees outside.  There was no air conditioning.  And two ovens.  And four burners.  No biggie.

 

Farmers market and cleaning on Saturday.

 

Yard work on Sunday.

 

And lots of recipes in between.  I’m pretty sure I spent 90% of my time thinking about or creating food.

 

I made strawberry syrup for homemade soda.  There was also agave nectar, lime, and vanilla bean in it.

 

I made strawberry infused rum.  It’s still infusing; I’ll let you know how it goes.

 

Pint

I made ice cream.  I threw in the left over crushed Oreos I had and the remaining cookie dough.  I put it in a reused pint container from the store.  It was damn good.

 

Bbq_cause

I made barbecue sauce.  From scratch.  There were peaches and limes and rum involved.  It too, was damn good.  I put it on some chicken.

 

I grilled some sandwiches, on the actual grill.  I’ll write all about that one later.  It was a pretty genius move.

 

Long weekends are amazing when they can be enjoyed as such.  With no real plans and freedom to anything, I had time to slow down and relax for the first time in a while.  And these are the fruits of my non-labor.

 

Chickens

 

Barbecue sauce

 

A note on this recipe:  Here’s the thing about this recipe.  I kind of made it up as I went.  I knew I needed brown sugar and ketchup, but otherwise I just looked around the house and threw in what sounded good.  And it worked.  Phenomenally.  It’s really easy and soooo good.  So just throw in whatever you’d like in your barbecue sauce.  I promise you really don’t even need a recipe.

 

           Ingredients

 

3 tablespoons olive oil

1 large onion

2 cloves garlic

1 peach diced

1/2 cup brown sugar

1/2 cup cider vinegar

1 cup ketchup

1/4 cup honey mustard

1/4 cup maple syrup

Juice of 1 lime

2 tablespoons rum

1 tablespoon cocoa powder

Salt

Pepper

 

Directions

 

1.  In a 2 quart saucepan sauté onions in olive oil until soft and translucent.  Add garlic and sauté 2 minutes stirring frequently.  Add peaches and cook until softened.

 

2.  In a bowl combine remaining ingredients while onions and garlic are cooking.  Add to sautéed mixture.  Cook down for at least an hour and up to a few hours.  Purée in blender, remembering to leave the insert out on the top of the blender if mixture is still hot.  Put a towel over the hole.  Slather chicken with this sauce and grill.  It makes a good dip so save some as well.

 

Soft_serve

 

Oreo cookie dough ice cream

 

A note on this recipe:  I have learned to freeze the drum on my ice cream maker the night before.  If you have a simple ice cream maker without temperature control this is the best way to make sure your ice cream comes out right.  Also the Oreos and cookie dough I used in this recipe can be found in this post.  I would encourage making them from scratch, but you can buy store bought.  But come on, we’re already making our own ice cream here, go all the way.

 

            Ingredients

 

1 cup milk

1 cup cream

1/2 cup agave nectar

2 tablespoons sugar

1 tablespoon corn syrup

1/2 vanilla bean, seeds and pod

5 egg yolks

Crushed Oreos

Cookie dough

 

            Directions

 

1.  In a medium saucepan heat milk, cream and vanilla bean until simmering.  Prepare an ice bath.

 

2. In a bowl mix agave, sugar, corn syrup and egg yolks.  Slowly temper egg mixture with hot milk, whisking constantly, adding more until you’ve added all milk.  Return to heat and bring to a simmer.  Cook 2-3 minutes until mixture just coats the back of a spoon.

 

3.  Pour mixture through a sieve into a bowl over prepared ice bath.  Whisk occasionally until cooled.  Transfer to airtight container and chill in the refrigerator at least one hour, preferably over night.  Transfer ice cream base to ice cream maker and freeze according to manufacturers instructions.

 

4.  When ice cream has reached soft serve consistency mix in crushed Oreos and cookie dough while ice cream maker is still churning. Freeze at least 3 hours.