Monday, May 25, 2020

Banana Currant Muffins - #MuffinMonday

Happy Labour Day (Jamaica)! Happy Memorial Day (US)! And enjoy your Spring Bank holiday (UK)!  And happy Muffin Monday everyone! Scroll down to see the delicious muffin lineup this month.

A couple weeks ago, my cousin gave me a hand of extremely ripe bananas. And even though I have used banana in muffins several times over the years, I just couldn't resist one more banana muffin. This time I threw in some currants. Simple and delicious. 

Banana Currant Muffins 
Yield: 16 muffins 


1/2 cup currants
2 cups flour 
1 teaspoon baking soda 
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg 
1/4 teaspoon salt 
2 cups mashed bananas 
3/4 cup brown sugar 
2 eggs, beaten
1/2 cup oil
1 teaspoon vanilla


About 30 minutes to an hour before baking, soak the currants in hot water to let them plump up a bit. After soaking, drain them.

Preheat oven to 350 F. Line a muffin tin with liners. 

Whisk flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt. In another bowl, mash bananas with the sugar then add the beaten eggs, oil, and vanilla. 

Pour the banana mixture into the flour mixture and add the drained currants. Gently fold the mixture until just combined. 

Fill the muffin wells almost to the top. 

Bake 15 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into a muffin comes out clean. 

Cool and enjoy!

Muffin Monday

#MuffinMonday is a group of muffin loving bakers who get together once a month to bake muffins. You can see all of our lovely muffins by following our Pinterest board. Updated links for all of our past events and more information about Muffin Monday can be found on our home page.

Thursday, May 21, 2020

Boozy Orange Ginger Bundt #BundtBakers

For this month's Bundt Bakers, our host, Sandra, wanted us to “dress up our Bundts”. It's rare that I add so much as a glaze to my Bundts because the perfect consistency still eludes me and also because my brother hates all things glaze and frosting. He complained about the glaze on my morning glory Bundt. "Would have been better without that sweet thing." But forget my brother, this month I was going to shine! I had visions of a flower garden on my Bundt. Dreams. So lovey. Because here's the deal - I can't pipe a flower. I've mastered the 1M swirl but still can mess that up too. So the roses and pansies that I envisioned? Yeah right. My dining table was covered with blobs of frosting before I gave up and grabbed a random tip and piped some stars on the poor Bundt. Learn to pipe roses has been on my to do list for a few years but I just have not gotten around to it. Maybe this summer? My Covid19/Summer to do list is already crazy long.

I adapted this Bundt from King Arthur's Harvey Wallbanger cake. I have never heard of it before but it has alcohol so that was appealing. I didn't have Galliano so I added rum and then added extra zest and some ginger. The alcohol bakes out for the most part so the cake could do with an alcohol soak but I was trying to avoid having my brother complain about a sweet soak AND frosting. I need his help eating this cake! So go ahead - pour a rum syrup on. The crumb here is tight and almost reminds me of a pound cake. I think I'll try this base recipe again with some different flavours. Be sure not to overbake, I saw some reviewers complain about the cake being dry. Mine wasn't.

There's a list of beautifully dressed up Bundts below the recipe. Be sure to scroll down to check them out.

Boozy Orange Ginger Bundt


3 cups flour
3 tablespoons cornstarch
4 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup orange juice
1/4 cup rum (I used Jamaican White Rum)
1/4 cup vodka
1/2 cup butter
1 3/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons orange zest
3 tablespoons grated ginger
1/3 cup oil
2 teaspoons vanilla 
4 eggs


Preheat oven to 350 F. Thoroughly grease a 9 cup Bundt pan.
Whisk together flour, cornstarch, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
Mix orange juice, rum and vodka.
Cream butter, sugar with the orange zest and grated ginger. Beat in oil and then add vanilla. Add the eggs one at a time, beating until each disappears before adding the other.
Scrape bowl.
Add 1/3 of the flour mixture, mixing until it just disappears and then 1/2 of the orange juice mixture. Scrape down the bowl.
Add another third of the flour mixture once again mixing until it just disappears and then add the remaining orange juice mixture. Add the final portion of flour, mix until it just disappears and scrape down the bowl. Mix for another minute.
Pour into well greased Bundt pan. Bake 45-50 minutes or until a skewer or spaghetti inserted into the Bundt comes out clean.


#BundtBakers is a group of Bundt loving bakers who get together once a month to bake Bundts with a common ingredient or theme. You can see all of our lovely Bundts by following our Pinterest board. We take turns hosting each month and choosing the theme/ingredient. Updated links for all of our past events and more information about BundtBakers can be found on our home page.

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Tuesday, May 12, 2020

Multigrain Spiced Raisin Bread

I braved the outside world to go grab a bag of rye and then completely forgot that Bread Bakers day was this Tuesday. I had next Tuesday in mind. Dates mean nothing in this new world. Luckily I remembered in time.

But can we talk about the extreme heat? Is it hot where you are? It's high 80's / 90's inside my house - even at night. This dough required a couple cycles of kneading and resting. Each time my dough would be very puffed up. I wish I had used less yeast. At one point I grabbed some ice to slow things down. I really want to revive my sourdough starter but I don't know how to maintain it in this heat.

Today, the Bread Bakers, hosted by Karen's Kitchen Stories, are baking breads with rye. My loaf is adapted from Smitten Kitchen who adapted it from Peter Reinhart. It is originally used mainly whole wheat but I used white because it has been years since I have worked with a completely whole grain loaf. Gone are the days I used to bake bread at least once per week. My skills are rusty. Read the instructions carefully. Peter Reinhart's recipes are notorious for not being the straightforward - mix all the ingredients and then bulk ferment, the end.

Multigrain Spiced Raisin Bread


330g bread flour
40g oats
40g rye
2 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons instant yeast
1 teaspoon mixed spice
1 teaspoon salt
1 egg yolk
1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons milk
1/2 cup water/
2 tablespoons oil
1/2 cup raisins

1/2 cup sugar
1 tablespoon mixed spice
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 teaspoons flour
1 egg white plus half tablespoon water


Whisk bread flour, oats, rye, sugar, yeast, mixed spice, and salt. Beat the yolk and add it along with the milk, water, and oil. Stir together for a minute then allow to rest for 5 minutes. 

Knead for 2 minutes. The dough will be a sticky but if it seems extremely wet, add a little flour. If it's dry, add a teaspoon of water at a time. 

Knead for 4 minutes.

Scrape the dough onto a lightly floured counter. Knead a few times then cover and allow to rest for 10 minutes. 

Knead then rest for 10 more minutes. 

Fold in the raisins. 

Transfer the dough to an oiled bowl. Allow to proof until doubled at room temperature or refrigerate overnight. I prefer to refrigerate overnight since the dough is a bit sticky and since my house is so hot. A slower rise leads to tastier bread. 

After proofing, prepare the filling. 

Combine sugar, mixed spice, and flour. 

Turn out the dough onto a floured surface and roll out into a 16" x 8" rectangle. Brush the dough with the egg white and water mixture. Sprinkle the sugar mixture over the dough leaving a bit of one short end clean. 

Starting a the short side (not the one you left with a clean edge), roll the dough into a long. Press the seam and the ends closed. Place inside a greased 9" x 5" loaf pan. 

Allow to proof at room temperature until it has doubled (approximately 40 minutes). Halfway through, preheat the oven to 350 F. 

Bake for 40 minutes. The loaf will be at 190 F when cooked and sound hollow when tapped. 


  • Mixed spice is what it sounds like - a mixture of spices popular here in Jamaica. The brand I used is a mixture of pimento, cinnamon, nutmeg, anise, and orange peel. 
  • I was out of raisins so I used currants. 
  • I used dark rye because that's all my supermarket had. In a future iteration, I'll use a higher percentage of rye. 

#BreadBakers is a group of bread loving bakers who get together once a month to bake bread with a common ingredient or theme. You can see all our lovely bread by following our Pinterest board right here. Links are also updated after each event on the #BreadBakers home page. We take turns hosting each month and choosing the theme/ingredient.
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