Category Archives: baking

Do I Really Bake?

Yes, I do! I enjoy baking a lot. I regularly make cookies and breads from scratch. 
I’ve had several comments from readers about a part in Calming the Storm where Rachel is making an apple crisp. People have told me that it sounds like I bake in real life. One reader even suggested that I include a recipe in my books. I thought this was a really neat idea, and I have decided to do just that.
I did go back and add Rachel’s Apple Crisp recipe to the Kindle version of Calming the Storm. But I wanted to post that recipe for those of you who already have copies of the book, just in case you want to try it out for yourselves.
I make this apple crisp regularly and it is so yummy! You can also follow this recipe and substitute peaches, pears, and berries.  If you use any canned fruit, drain it, pour it in, and directly stir the cinnamon into that rather than add any water. That extra juice will compensate and you don’t want the dessert to get too soggy!
I originally got this recipe from my sweet mom, who received the recipe from her mom. Without them, we would not have apple crisp at our home and I’m pretty sure it would be missed terribly!

Calming the Storm
Rachel’s Apple Crisp Recipe     

4 cups sliced apples

¼ cup water

1 tsp. cinnamon

1 cup sugar

¾ cup flour

1/3 cup soft butter

Preheat the oven to 350ºF·          

Spread the sliced apples in the bottom of an ungreased 8” x 8” pan 

Combine the water and cinnamon in a bowl and then sprinkle that over the apples

Work sugar, flour, and soft butter together until it is crumbly

Spread the mixture over the apples evenly

Sprinkle more cinnamon on top of the mixture according to your preference

 Bake uncovered for approximately 40 minutes

This is delicious right out of the oven, with ice cream, and even cold from the fridge


Banana Bread Galore!

We had 9 or 10 bananas that were getting incredibly brown. These were some bananas that weren’t fantastic when we bought them, so they just sat on the counter until they were way past their prime. Because I hate seeing any food to go waste, my daughter and I spent yesterday afternoon making banana bread. 
We had enough of the batter to make a large loaf and three small loaves of regular banana bread and then a large loaf and four small loaves of chocolate banana bread. 
I especially love this bread right out of the oven with some butter melting on the top. Yum!
Thankfully we had a get together with some friends last night so I was able to give away four of the small loaves. I left some out for breakfast the next couple of days and then froze the rest. I love being able to just reach into my freezer and pull out some banana bread when the mood strikes someone in the house! 
Are you hungry for banana bread yet? Let me share the recipe I have with you! For chocolate banana bread, use 1 3/4 cups of flour and 1/4 cup of baking cocoa powder instead of the 2 cups of flour. 

Banana Bread 

2 cups flour
1/4 cup sugar
1 tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt (optional)
1 cup milk
1 egg beaten
1/3 cup vegetable oil
3/4 cup mashed banana
1/2 cup walnuts (optional) 

Grease the bread pan
Mix the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in a bowl
Mix the milk, egg, oil and banana in a bowl
Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients
Pour the wet mixture into the well
Mix the batter until moistened – don’t over mix
Spoon batter into the bread pan
Bake at 400’F for approximately 25 minutes
Check with toothpick, bake an addition 5-10 minutes if needed