Category Archives: Fruit

Banana Muffins


This recipe for banana muffins comes from the same Thomas Keller cookbook, Bouchon Bakery, that I’ve been making a lot of baked goods from. The recipe is pretty exact but not very difficult and if you follow it step by step, you will be sure to have great results.

Keller suggests resting the batter overnight. This allows the flour to hydrate, or absorb the liquid which results in an extra moist muffin. This is also a great idea because you can make the batter the night before and it will be ready to pop in the oven in the morning.
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Baked Apple Oatmeal

As you may have guessed by now, I love apples. I eat one every morning. Usually in addition to granola or a piece of toast but when I’m looking for something hearty and warm, I turn to this baked apple oatmeal. It’s not too sweet and the pumpkin seeds add a savory crunch. It will keep you full until lunch while still warming your belly on the kind of cold mornings that we’re still experiencing in late March.
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Apple Cake

This quick bread comes together easily and includes one of my favorite foods, apples. I got the idea from a blog that I visit often and it’s a recipe from her great grandmother which I figured was a good sign. I tweaked it a little by adding some buckwheat flour for extra nuttiness and using olive oil instead of canola. I also reduced the amount of sugar for a little less sweetness.

The end result is a recipe that is great to have on hand because it comes together so quickly and with mostly pantry staples. It’s also easy to swap ingredients like using only regular flour if you don’t have any buckwheat flour in your pantry.

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Plum Tart

I saw these great plums at the farmers market last Sunday and I knew I had to make something with them. I was having some family over for lunch that day and was trying to be a little ambitious to make lunch and a dessert all before 1 pm. My plan was to make a simple pastry crust, top it with pastry cream and add the sliced plums once it was cool. It seemed easy in my mind! However, the pastry cream requires a lot of attention and I happened to be in the middle of some important steps once people starting arriving and it didn’t quite turn out. So we just ate the tart shell with the plums which was delicious but not quite what I intended. Both the tart shell and the pastry cream can be made ahead of time but of course that requires a little more planning. I made the tart again, later in the week when I didn’t have a bunch of things going on at once, and these are the end results.

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I was upstate for the 4th of July at a friends house, doing all the usual 4th of July things; grilling, drinking beer, and swimming in the pool. We had a great spread of corn, peppers, onions and a few big rib eyes. Also, a great chilled red wine that we drank on the patio. I was skeptical at first about red wine for a bbq but I was proved wrong. The slight chill made it really refreshing.

Back to the cherries! We snacked on them before lunch and ever since then, I’ve been buying cherries for my apartment and it takes me back a little to that day trip out of the city and how nice it was to run around in a big backyard with lots of space, to forget about time, obligations and just spend time with friends and family.

On the train ride back from Poughkeepsie that night we saw some fireworks being set off on the Hudson which was a great end to a long, exhausting and wonderful 4th of July.

Fried Green Tomatoes

As I mentioned earlier, it’s not tomato season in New York, where I live, but in Florida, where I grew up and where my parents live, there are pretty much no seasons. It’s just hot all the time. And in the summer, it’s hotter. So when I went down to visit my parents a couple weeks ago, I was thrilled to see my moms garden overflowing with tomatoes. I haven’t had good tomatoes since late last summer and I wanted to make the most of it. A lot of them were still green though so I decided to make some simple fried green tomatoes. I fried them in olive oil which added more flavor than regular canola oil for the perfect sweet, crispy slivers.

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Oven Dried Tomatoes

In New York, where I live, tomatoes aren’t in season but this is a great way to impart a lot of flavor to tomatoes in the dead of winter when they are likely shipped in from far away. These are particularly good on pizza but also delicious with anything you would normally eat tomatoes with like pasta or on sandwiches. They’ll stay good for about a week, but you’ll probably finish them before that.
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