Terre Pruitt's Blog

In the realm of health, wellness, fitness, and the like, or whatever inspires me.

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Posts Tagged ‘banana bread’

Good Nut

Posted by terrepruitt on August 22, 2013

Walnuts are awesome.  As you may have read in some of my other posts, my hubby doesn’t really like walnuts.  I find that fact rather funny because he likes pretty much everything, but he is not fond of walnuts.  One day I had a bag of pecans on the table and I was having some for dessert.  He grabbed a couple and ate them.  As he was eating them he looked at me and said something like, “What?  These are so good.  Why did I not know these are so delicious?  I am amazed!”  I actually laughed at his reaction to them because pecans really are very yummy.  They are rich and slightly sweet and he didn’t know the joy.  Walnuts are different and he doesn’t care for them.  I think walnuts are awesome.  The thing I like about nuts is they can be used in sweet or savory dishes, or even eaten by themselves.  Walnuts are a bit harder than pecans.  Pecans almost feel stale or old because they are kind of soft.  Walnuts are hard and they are not as rich, but they are very good and good for you.

Walnuts have Omega 3 fatty acids in them. You might have heard that Omega 3 fat is the fat that we need to consume.  Research has indicated that we don’t eat enough of it AND that it is a helpful and healthful fat.

My research has uncovered 1 ounce / roughly 28 grams has

190 calories
4 grams of protein
18 grams of total fat (1.5 grams of saturated fat and 2.5 grams of monounsaturated fat and 13 grams of polyunsaturated fat)

4 grams of carbohydrates
2 grams of fiber
28 mg of calcium
.82 mg of iron
125 mg of potassium
11 grams of Linoleic acid
2.5 grams of Linolenic acid

The Linoleic acid is the Omega 3 essential fatty acids.  And it is the Omega 3 that we want.  Omega 3 is considered an anti-inflammatory.  As I have mentioned in numerous other posts, anti-inflammatory foods are a welcome part of a healthy diet.  With more and more research pointing to the association between chronic inflammation in the body and disease, it is a good idea to consume foods with an anti-inflammatory effect.

According to the World’s Healthiest Foods site:  Research has shown walnuts to help with cardiovascular health.

They  have been shown to decrease LDL cholesterol, decrease total cholesterol, and increase omega-3 fatty acids in red blood cells.  Also decrease the risk of excessive clotting and excessive inflammation.

For me, as I mentioned they can be eaten in savory dishes, like with green beans (click here for a green been recipe) or in sweets.  I like to put walnuts in my banana bread, but I don’t because John doesn’t like them and I primarily make the bread for him.  But I do put them in the Banana Oatmeal Walnut Cookies (click here for that recipe).  He actually is ok with them in the green beans and the cookies.  I also think they are a great snack or dessert.

Do you like walnuts?  How do you like to eat them?

Posted in Food | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments »

Blender Banana Bread

Posted by terrepruitt on October 4, 2012

I don’t like to waste my bananas.  My husband won’t eat them if they have one little tiny spot of brown.  And I don’t usually eat that many bananas.  So you might have learned from some of my posts that I usually use the over ripe bananas in banana bread or Banana Oatmeal Walnut Cookies.  Both of these items are not low calorie nor low fat, they are just a way for me to use up my bananas and put a treat in my hubby’s lunch.  I have a great recipe I found on the internet for banana bread.  I think it was called the World’s Best Banana Bread and I actually think it is.  I have issues cooking it though, it never seems cooked all the way through, but that could because it is hand mixed and the bananas kind of chunk up in the batter.  Well, since I got a fancy new blender I have been trying to find things to use it for.  In the recipe book there is a recipe for banana bread so I thought I would give it a try.  Even though the ingredients get mixed in the blender the recipe calls for the bananas to be mashed.  Before I stared I grabbed my camera fully intending on taking pictures along the way.  The next thing I knew I was putting the pan in the oven.  DRAT!  I forgot to take pictures as I was making it. But I took some of the finished product.  Can you see how smooth it is?  Blender bread is really like “commercially made” bread.

I liked the taste ok.  It was actually good.  I think the vanilla yogurt added the extra sweet, yumminess.  Since it has no butter it has to be less calories and grams of fat then my other recipe.  And it really was good, but it was so . . . “commercial”.  It was like a loaf of bread from the store.  There was no texture, no chunks, no . . . personality.

In addition to using my blender the other reason I wanted to try this recipe is because it called for two bananas and that is what I had.

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia at the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, ZumbaI can’t find the recipe on the Blendtec website and, of course, I did some modifying anyway, so here is what I did:

Using the WildSide Jar

2 ripe bananas, mashed
2 large eggs
1/2 C low-fat vanilla yogurt
3/4 C sugar
1/4 C olive oil
1 teaspoon vanilla

3/4 C wheat flour
3/4 C white flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Add first six ingredients to the container and secure lid.  Select “Batters.”  After that has blended, add the remaining four ingredients to the container and secure the lid.  Press “Pulse” 3-5 times until dry ingredients are incorporated.  (Do not over blend.)  Pour batter into greased 9″X5″ loan pan.  Bake for 50 to 60 minutes.

I guess the WildSide Jar and the FourSide Jar for this blender are very different because there are additional/different instructions if you are using the FourSide Jar.

Well, I know that I have been posting a lot about my blender, but . . . I am trying to get a fraction of the money’s worth out of it!  I will not turn this blog into a blender blog, I will post about Nia, exercises, other health stuff, and even Zumba, but I am getting some post out of my first uses of the blender.

Do you like your banana bread smooth?  Or do you like it more rustic and chunky?

Posted in "Recipes", Food | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Banana Oatmeal Walnut Cookies

Posted by terrepruitt on August 13, 2011

This recipe allows you to use up the over ripe bananas without having to resort to banana bread.  Although these taste pretty much like banana bread, but lighter, more airy.  While the large amount of butter seems to make these anything but a low-fat cookie, I find that they are very satisfying so I don’t gobble down an entire half-dozen.  If you break it down it is about 1/8 of a tablespoon per cookie.  It is a cookie and like all cookies, they are meant to be a treat.  I think that the bananas, the oats, and the walnuts add a bit of nutrients to them.  I think anytime good-for-you ingredients can be added to a sweet treat it is a great thing.  Homemade is better than packaged goods.

Nia cardio workout, workout San Jose, Nia Los GatosBanana Oatmeal Walnut Cookies

Ingredients:

3/4 cup of butter
1 cup sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon of vanilla

1 cup wheat flour
1/2 cup white flour
1 3/4 cups oats
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
¾ teaspoon cinnamon
A sprinkle of nutmeg
3 bananas

Chopped walnuts

Preheat oven 375 degrees

Using an electric hand-held beater, mix up the butter and sugar.  I mix it up until it is fluffy.

Then, add the egg and vanilla. Mix well.  This I mix until it is light and fluffy.  (I think that is what helps make the cookies lighter than banana bread.)

Add the rest of the ingredients (except the nuts) one at a time.  Blending well – using the electric hand-held beater – after adding each one and before adding the next.

Stir the walnuts in using a spoon or whatever.  I just wouldn’t use the beater.

The “dough” is rather runny for me at this point.  I use a round measuring spoon to scoop up the mixture and put it on a cookie sheet.

I don’t grease the sheet, but I think that really depends on what you are baking on.  You can decide.  I do space them out rather far because they tend to grow a little bit.

I bake them at 375 degrees for 12.  I bake them for 6 minutes, then I turn the pan.  And bake them for another 6 minutes, for a total of 12 minutes.  Again, you decide how “DONE” you want your cookies, plus you know your oven.  So maybe start out with 10 minutes and add minutes accordingly.  And if you have greased the cookie sheet the time might need altering.

I think I get about 4 dozen out of this recipe.

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Nia in San Jose, Nia in the San Francisco Bay Area, SFBayNia, SF Bay Area Nia, http://www.sfbaynia.com/

I am going to keep this version of the recipe, but also do some alterations sometimes when I make them.  I have some ideas I want to try.  I want to try LESS butter.  I also might try the chocolate chips again, but maybe less of them (I only used ¾ of a cup the first time!) and maybe WITH nuts, oh (!) and with my nutmeg addition.  That might make a big difference.  But I somewhat agree with my husband about adding chocolate chips to a cookie, it just makes it a chocolate chip cookie.

I want to let you know the path that led me to making this recipe.  First I went looking for recipes and ideas on what to do with over ripe banana and I found 100 Things to Do with a Banana (yeah, really).  Since they have pictures I just scrolled through clicking on pictures I liked and it led to A little bit of this, a little bit of that .

So, what do you think?  Are you a chocolate lover?  Then you might want to add a cup or so of chocolate chips.  What else can you think of to make this better?  Let me know.  I am always interested in hearing about alterations.

Posted in "Recipes", Food | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments »

Banana Cookies – Homemade and Delicious

Posted by terrepruitt on August 11, 2011

My husband and I buy bananas and we don’t eat them fast enough before they get too ripe.  His idea of “too ripe” is one tiny little brown spot.  The entire banana can still be GREEN, but if he sees a spot it is too ripe.  I used to like them REALLY ripe, all covered in spots and almost — ALMOST, not quite, mushy.  But now I like them a little less ripe.  I don’t like them when they “snap”, but I don’t like them when I touch it and my finger mushes into it.  So . . . I had been making a lot of banana bread.  I honestly think that my husband buys a huge bunch of bananas knowing full well that he will only eat one or two and then I will make bread out of them.  I somewhat have an issue with the banana bread.  It doesn’t seem to cook on the top.  The first time I sent it to work with him he came home and said that his co-worker loved it.  I was so embarrassed and I told him that he was NOT supposed to share it because it was uncooked.  He and his co-worker like it like that.  He also likes it without nuts, which I think is just not right.  I had been making it so much, I got tired of doing so.  I went online (but, of course) to find other ways to use ripe bananas.  I found a banana cookie recipe.  Yeah, bananas in the cookies.

Nia teacher makes banana cookies, Nia workout, Nia dance class, Nia San Jose, San Jose workoutThis woman found a banana cookie recipe on the internet and changed it up a bit. I decided to try her recipe, but wanted to change it a bit.  The recipe called for chocolate chips.  My plan was to make some without chocolate chips, then put some chips in and make some with chocolate chips. It turned out I didn’t have any chocolate chips, and unlike Carson, I didn’t even have any big chocolate drops. So I made the entire batch without chips. I liked them but they were missing something. Even though I put in the cinnamon she has listed and even though I put in twice as much vanilla they were still a little “blah”.  To me.  Blah to me was actually good because even though they were good they weren’t so good that I found myself eating them non-stop.  So it was nice that I could actually eat them as a treat should be eaten.

The next time I made them I decided to try it with the chocolate chips.  But I thought that regular sized chips would be to over powering so I bought mini chocolate chips.  Nia Classes, San Jose Nia Classes, Los Gatos Nia classes, Nia Cardio Dance WorkoutI also used three bananas instead of two.  I also used different oats, which were much larger than the first ones I had.  I DID NOT like that large oat in my cookie.  Made it seem like I was chewing cud instead of a cookie, so I made a mental note to change that.  So this batch was ok.  But as my husband said, “If you put chocolate chips in a cookie it makes it a chocolate chip cookie.”  I liked them and so did he, but we decided we liked them better without chocolate chips.

So my third attempt—-HAZZAH!  I finally got it!  I pulsed the “too big” oats, I added more cinnamon, I stuck with three bananas, I added walnuts, and I sprinkled in some nutmeg!  So yay!!!!!  I got it.  Finally turned what to me seemed blah into . . . now I have to STOP myself from eating them.  Ok, not really.  That is why I like this cookie so much.  It is almost as if it is so satisfying I don’t have a desire to eat a whole plate.

They are a really nice cookie.  I think that homemade is so much better than packaged because you know what goes in them and it is usually a lot less chemicals and even some fruit.  These are kind like little circles of banana bread, really, but a little less dense.  And these I can manage to cook all the way through.

Here is the recipe .  . . . Banana Oatmeal Walnut Cookies.

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