Sunday, April 8, 2012

Mango-Banana Bread, Campaigning, and Artistry

Last night's fundraiser was a big success...  It was held at my dear friend Amery's art gallery and was made extra-entertaining because a number of the people who attended all worked on a painting together under Amery's guidance and then everyone then signed the back.  ((This is the point at which I got covered in paint.))  It will be a great reminder to the candidate of all the support of his wacky friends he has received.  The painting actually turned out really well ((thanks to Ames' instruction and perhaps a little of her fixing...))

Teaching is made easier with wine...

Lord, help this woman trying to paint!

Today I catered a Bachelorette Hangover Brunch.  Well, that's what I'm calling it!  Their menu was sun-dried tomato egg bake, spinach-strawberry-almond salad, fruit salad, coffee cake, and mango banana bread.  This was a little extra challenge because at least one of the attendees was vegan.  In googling and googling and googling, it was hard to come up with many vegan recipes, particularly for a brunch.  Well, let me restate that:  It was hard coming up with something that I could predict how it would turn out because a lot of the ingredients were not things I had used before.  I need to expand my horizons.  However, my friend Angie had made this recipe and gave it a huge thumbs up, so I went with it.

Very Vegan Mango Banana Bread

Original recipe from "Joy the Baker."

What you need for one 9x5 loaf:

3 medium or 2 large ripe bananas
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 ripe mango, sliced into chunks
granulated sugar for topping

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease and flour a 9 x 5-inch loaf pan.

In a large mixing bowl, mash the bananas well by smashing them with the back of a wooden spoon. Add the sugar, oil, and vanilla extract, and whisk the hell out of it.
Sift in the flour, baking soda, spices, and salt. ((I can hear you... WTF is "sifting?!"  Read this.))  Then use your wooden spoon to mix just until the wet and dry ingredients are combined.  You don't need to over-do this.  Then throw in the mango chunks and "fold" them in ((just move some of the batter around the mango.))

Put the batter in your loaf pan and sprinkle with extra sugar on top if you’d like.

Bake for 45 to 50 minutes. The top should be lightly browned and a knife inserted
through the center should come out clean, or with just a few crumbs.

Remove from the oven and let cool for 20 minutes before transferring out of a pan and
onto a wire rack to cool completely.

Banana bread will last, wrapped at room temperature, for up to 5 days.  I prefer to keep it in the refrigerator and then nuke it ((my term for microwaving)) for 30 seconds prior to eating.

Good and good for you!
As promised, here's a pic of the cinnamon-swirl coffee cake discussed here.

Coffee-less Coffee Cake

Here are a few more pictures from last night.

 I just did a very simple cheese array with lots of beer and wine:

I set it up in front of her current major piece which you should totally buy:

Here are a couple of pictures with a few of my friends who attended because apparently I like posting pictures of myself.


So there you have it.  Happy Easter weekend...  I'm off to work out the details for a dinner I'm making tomorrow.  They want a Mexican Seafood Feast.  I'm all over that request!  Yum.

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