Raspberry Lime Buttermilk Quick Bread

Last week we had extremely unseasonably warm weather up here in New Hampshire, and it was a glorious preview for the upcoming summer season.  To celebrate, I threw open the windows, dug out my favorite Minnetonka moccasins, and got outside as much as possible.

I moved up here in November, when hibernation mode kicks in and everything slows down.  It’s been a long winter.  Walking around my neighborhood last week, I saw dogs lounging on porches, grills emerging from their winter tarps, and the beginning of forsythia buds on the bushes.  All were welcome sights, and have me positively yearning for the warm half of spring and the heat of summer.  I have a car for the first time in over 5 years, Mount Monadnock down the road, and an endless stream of events and festivals I’ve always wanted to go to at my disposal.  I want to see and experience everything.  (Insert silent cry of “Who’s with me??” here)

Not so welcome were the sounds of Keene State students driving or stumbling by my open windows, but hey, I spent the last six years in Boston.  I can manage.

A big part of my job for Yankee Magazine right now is testing recipes for the next “cookbook-azine” we’ll be putting out in the fall.  Here’s a sneak peek at some of the things I’ve been making.  I can’t have you thinking I’m not cooking like a maniac over here, even if I can’t share it.

Asparagus Vinaigrette, Fan-Tan Rolls, Cheese Straws, Coffee Cloud Sponge Cake, Old-Fashioned Soda Crackers, Blueberry Boy Bait

I had some leftover buttermilk from the Fan-Tan Rolls, so I tapped into some of my early-summer cravings and made a loaf of buttermilk quick bread, flavored with frozen raspberries and lime zest.  Raspberry Lime Rickey, anyone?

The bread was just what I thought it would be — tangy, zesty, and a good way to kick of the warm weather season, even though I know it’s going to be awhile before summer officially arrives.  As I am typing this, the thermometer in my kitchen window is flirting with freezing.

It’s all part of the fun of living in New England, and of course, I wouldn’t have it any other way!  Not really…

Raspberry Lime Buttermilk Quick Bread
Adapted from The Kitchn

Ingredients
2 cups flour
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup buttermilk
1 large egg
1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
1 cup frozen raspberries
1 teaspoon vanilla
Zest from one lime

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and grease a 9 x 5-inch loaf pan.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.  Set aside.
  3. In a small bowl, whisk together the melted butter, buttermilk, egg, and vanilla.
  4. Slowly pour the liquid over the dry ingredients and lightly fold with a rubber spatula for a few strokes.  Add the raspberries and lime zest and fold a few more times until just combined.  Do not overmix.
  5. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan, and bake for 45-50 minutes or until golden and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.  Let the bread cool in the pan for 15 minutes before moving to a wire rack to cool completely.

Print the recipe for Raspberry Lime Buttermilk Quick Bread.

Raspberry Walnut Shortbread Squares

Bar cookies are my favorite of the cookie family.  I have a tiny apartment oven and I am prone to clutter.  This means most varieties of cookies are not ideal because I can’t fit as many in the oven at once, can’t see them cooking, and can’t find enough clear surfaces to cool them on once they are done….provided I haven’t burned them.

None of this matters with bar cookies.  In they go, out they come.  Cool, lift, cut. 

Keep Reading!

Merry Mini Cupcakes

Merry Mini Cupcakes

I am very fortunate have a Bruegger’s Bagel Bakery on the first floor of my work building, for 2 reasons:

  1. Their Coffee Club Card program.  Every year I buy my card, and then it’s good for unlimited coffee, tea, and soda fountain beverages for the rest of the year.  I figure at the rate I drink coffee, it pretty much pays for itself by March.
  2. Their great staff.  Every morning day they make getting coffee an enjoyable experience.  I used to work with hungry people and caffeine crazy people so I know how much fun their job isn’t.  I can honestly tell you I am sad when one of them quits and I didn’t get to say goodbye (I am talking to you Helen, Amanda, and Jess). 

When I learned that one of the managers was about to turn the same age as me, I thought it would be nice to make him something…since I like all the company at this age I can get.

I went with some festive mini cupcakes.  Vanilla cake was topped with vanilla buttercream.  Have I mentioned I don’t like chocolate?

For fun I filled them first with a teeny bit of seedless raspberry jam.

I thought it provided a nice little bit of juicy sweetness in the midst of all that smooth, creamy vanilla sweetness.

The mini red polka dot and gingham (not pictured) wrappers are also awesome, and came from The Bakers Confections on Etsy.  Visit them for all of your cupcake supply needs – they are terrific, and are located in Maine. 

Another point for New England!

I forgot to photograph an ornament with the one cupcake I allowed myself before I ate it (oops), so no ornament today…but I knew I could turn to Etsy for today’s Cup of Cheer.

Make that three cups.  Two for Christmas and one for me.

1.  I love these napkins.  Period.

Screen Printed Organic Cotton Merry Christmas Cloth Napkins from ohlittlerabbit, $20

2.  This vintage card is so hilarious and dated, but I love it, and I love the way the woman’s legs are stretched towards the man.  Speaking volumes with limbs only.  And oh yeah, Merry Christmas.

1930’s Cigarette Christmas Holiday Card from takingshape, $4

3.  I basically want everything for sale at jimboart.  Look at this bear.  He smells cakes and he just wants a little slice.  He is skin and bones! 

Bear Smells Cake Hand Painted Side Plate from jimbobart, $37.50

How’s your holiday shopping coming?  I need to kick mine into some serious high gear.  I haven’t even started my cards.  Maybe tonight will be the night I make THE LIST.  Do you go off a list or buy as you see?  Do you shop online or haul yourself to the stores?  Both?

Help me help you help me!