Monthly Archives: August 2009

Muffins – Bright Day Banana Muffins

Bright Day Banana Muffins

Bright Day Banana Muffins

What a great way to end the week. These muffins are so tasty.  I promised my students that I would make muffins from scratch so here is what I did.  This recipe came from an old Pillsbury cookbook.  My students loved it.  Hope that you love it too.  Try them they are  so easy and healthy.

Bright Day Banana Muffins

  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • ¾ cup whole wheat flour
  •  1/2 cup sugar
  •   2 teaspoons baking powder
  •  1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  •  1/2 cup (1 medium) mashed ripe banana
  •  1/2 cup milk
  • 1/3 cup oil
  •  1 egg, slightly beaten
  • Topping
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 Tablespoons butter melted                                                           

Heat oven to 400F.  Grease bottoms of 12 muffin cups or line with paper baking cups.  Combine all dry ingredients; stir in remaining muffin ingredients until dry particles are moistened.  Fill 2/3 full.

Bake at 400F. for 18 to 22 minutes or until golden brown.  Immediately remove from pan.  In small bowl, combine ¼ cup sugar and cinnamon.  Brush tops of hot muffins with melted  butterand dip in sugar-cinnamon mixture.  Serve warm.

To brush the tops of the muffins I used a Le Creuset pastry brush with a silicone brush.  I LOVE it.  It will withstand high heat and can go directly into the dishwasher.  It is perfect.

About nutrition:  These muffins have 210 calories, 3 g protein and 2g fiber.  Better than most.  Freeze these babies and just pull them out and microwave for 30 seconds.  Pair with a cold glass of milk and you have the perfect breakfast.

Happy Cooking,

The Teacher Cooks

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Blueberry Muffins – LAB DAY!!!!

Great muffins and a cute card

Great muffins and a cute card.

 The first lab of the semester is always interesting.  I never know what to expect.  A very quiet shy body can turn into a firecracker in the kitchen.  I’ll see a leader emerge in each group or some may look at them as “control freaks”… whatever…it is the in charge person.  Anyway, I find it quite interesting to watch the meshing of  personalities that in the end want one thing-  MY STAMP OF APPROVAL.

So was today a good lab day?  One of the best!  Problems were few – 1 glass broken, 1 oven turned off instead of on, 1 oven left on, some dishes washed in cold water, and some muffins a little too brown.  I cannot complain! I think that we are off to a great semester of cooking.  

Just take a  l00k at these amazing picture of muffins that were made by future chefs, cooks, family meal planners, or better yet OUR FUTURE.  It is just the tip of the iceberg and we are in for a treat!!

Just a note here.  I got a message yesterday on Facebook from a former student that said “I thank you everyday for my culinary skills!”  Of course I don’t take credit.  I just gave her a little nudge, she did the rest.  Things like that are so good to hear.  It makes me feel like I make a difference  and that is why I am….

The Teacher Cooks

Enjoy the pictures from “CHEFS IN TRAINING”

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Muffins and Getting to Know Your Kitchen

Lemon Poppyseed MuffinsToday was the first demo of the semester.  I made muffins from a box. ” Why?”  So you think I  should be making these from scratch.  I will later. This is a great way for the students to get to know who they will be working with, get familiar with their kitchen and figure out exactly how they will be graded.  They all want to make the perfect product and are most eager to hear what I have to say after I taste!!  

Notice that one of these muffins is really peaked!!  I promise I did not overmix them.  I am guessing that I put a little more batter in than I should have.  The rest are rounded as they should be. 

The first lab of the semester is always interesting.  I have a great variety of students some of which cook everyday and others that have only had the experience of eating in a kitchen. 

Will be posting pictures of tomorrow’s  pieces of work!!! Until then,

Happy Cooking,

The Teacher Cooks

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MEASURING INGREDIENTS

OK THIS COULD BE A BORING SUBJECT.   But it is necessary to those who have never stepped foot into the kitchen.   Believe me I have seen almost every kind of mistake that can be made by measuring incorrectly.  So I am giving you the basics here.

Measuring can make or break a recipe especially when baking.  Even a small ingredient such as salt  makes a big difference.  On the other hand if your are making spaghetti sauce  or something similar you can vary amounts of ingredients or leave some out all together and the sauce will still be tasty.

Measuring Liquids  - Liquid measuring cups come in various sizes. They should be glass or plastic with a pouring spout.   For those who have never measured ingredients pay attention to this small detail, when measuring 1/2 cup of a liquid do not measure it in a 4 cup measure.  The smallest amount you can measure is 1 cup.  Measure liquids at eye level.  Don’t measure liquids in a dry measuring cup!!

 

Measuring Flour

  • Use dry measuring cups
  • Sift if necessary or stir to add air if packed
  • Spoon lightly into a measuring cup
  • Level with a straight edge
  • Do not scoop flour out with the measuring cup or measuring spoon. You will almost  DOUBLE the flour you need. 

Wax paper is a great to use  on the counter when measuring because you can pour the leftovers back into the canister. 

Powdered sugar should be measured same as flour.

Brown sugar should be packed into a dry measure.

Use measuring spoons for small amounts of ingredients and level.

Shortening can be measured in two ways:

  • Pack into a dry measuring cup
  • Water Displacement method:  if you need 1/2 cup shortening measure 1/2 cup cold water and add shortening until the water level is 1 cup.  Keep shortening under water by pushing in to stick to bottom or side. Drain water.

Remember that measuring correctly is the key to great baking!!

Happy Cooking,

The Teacher Cooks

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Potato Salad and Tailgating

 

We went to the Braves game last night and at the last minute I decided that we should tailgate.   We have not done that in years.  I did nothing fancy.  I sliced garden fresh tomatoes with a little Italian dressing.  Sliced fresh peaches that GI Joe brought back from the English Farm in Zebulon.  They are great!  I picked up my favorite fried chicken.  The best part is that I made homemade potato salad. 

Potato salad is one of my favorite foods.  I LOVE it!  I am sharing with you my mother’s recipe.  She was such a great cook.  We like it hot with dill pickles, but you can use sweet pickles and serve it chilled.

Rule of thumb:  When making potato salad or mashed potatoes use 1 potato for each person.  What kind of potatoes do you use?  I use baking potatoes.  They have more starch so when cooked will tend to fall apart making a soft potato salad.  If you like more firm potatoes use new potatoes.  They have less starch ,less calories but they stay firm after cooking.  Choose what you like. 

Steps for making salad:

1.  Cube potatoes and cover with water in a saucepan.  I do not use salt because the olives I put in the salad are salty. 

2.  Cook until tender. About 15 – 20 min.  Check by using a fork and check for desired tenderness.

3.  Drain in a colander.  

4.  Return to pan and put your choice of condiments in such as sliced olives, dill pickle relish, a little mustard and mayonnaise. Stir lightly.

Enjoy!

Happy Cooking,

The Teacher Cooks

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Yogurt Fruit Parfaits

This is the first full  week of school.  I am so excited.  That is just crazy!    After 30 years- Did I  just type that? – It will  be just another day, but NO.     56 high school students are walking  through my classroom door every day hoping that it will be a fun class.  Most days it will  but after all it is school.  We will use a textbook and take tests.  They will have fun though,  they will learn how to COOK!!!  Better yet they are going to EAT.   SOOO  I have a captive audience, they will eat ANYTHING that I put before them .  Most of them do not eat breakfast.  They are  starving. 

Just so you will  know I am no culinary expert.  I am just a Nutrition and Wellness teacher that loves to teach and loves to cook.  With that said let’s start with something easy for breakfast.   

 

Yogurt Fruit Parfaits -   YUMMY

 

My first experience with these cute little things was in PC (Panama City, Fla).  GI Joe and I were attending a destination wedding for one of my best friend’s daughter’s wedding.  The morning of the wedding we had breakfast at the Bay Point Marriott restaurant where we were staying .  The Parfait was a feast for your eyes as well as scrumptious to eat.  As most hotels, the cost was HIGH.  I am so cheap in some ways.   As a Family and Consumer Science Teacher aka. Home Economics teacher anything that you can

 

make at home and buy elsewhere is HIGH!!   When we returned home  I started making some of those high priced PARFAITS.  They are sooo easy and sooo good.  Here ya go. 

Use any fruits that are in season ( or Frozen) for example blueberries and peaches or strawberries and bananas

Add nuts

Granola

Nonfat yogurt

Layer in a pretty glass.  PAY ATTENTION TO SERVING SIZE   Read the labels and do not use your eyes as a guide. Until you get a feel for serving sizes USE measuring cups.  You will be surprised.

That’s it for today!

Happy Cooking,

The Teacher Cooks

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Hello world!

Welcome to my new blog about teaching and cooking. In future blogs you will find out some interesting things about teaching a nutrition and wellness class to high school students as well as knowledge about food preparation from the ground up. I am not a fancy cook that’s been trained in France. I’m just a Southern cook trained in a Southern home. I will be sharing with you recipes that I use with students and ones that I feed GI Joe (my husband) and The Athlete (my son). With that said I am off and running to get my classes started and to keep my family fed.

Happy Cooking,
The Teacher Cooks

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