Friday, February 19, 2016

Quilt Blocks and Banana Carrot Bread

 This week has been wonderful! Not only have I had enough energy to be able to play a bit in my sewing room and in my kitchen, but the weather has been nice enough to open windows and go for afternoon walks.

Sewing Room Play
I couldn't wait to start work on a new block design. I'd been toying with it on paper for a couple of weeks and it was ready for fabric. I was determined to use only fabrics that I had on hand. The pink and soft green fabrics felt fresh and spring-like, so that was my starting point. . The first attempt in fabric was okay, but boring. I felt like it really needed more color. I switched out only one fabric, but the difference is dramatic. Today, I'll begin trying to turn this into something - still not sure what, but definitely something. 

One photo taken in the morning, one taken in the afternoon. The colors change in the light.

I've joined a quilt-along group, "The Splendid Sampler", with Pat Sloan and a number of other designers. There will be 100 blocks altogether - two each week. This is the link:

I'm not at all pleased with my second block, so I may make it over later on. I didn't notice until I looked at the photograph, but some of my points got chopped off. I definitely need to work on perfecting a number of my skills and this is a pleasant and painless way to do so. I'll have 100 blocks at the end, too. A whole quilt!

Kitchen Play

Bananas were overripe, carrots were starting to get dry on the outside, and my golden raisins were almost finished. What do you do when you have food that needs to be used or tossed? This time I did toss it - all into one recipe, and believe me, this is a keeper! It's sweet and moist and simply chock-full of flavor and texture goodness. 

Banana-Carrot-Raisin Bread 

Makes 2 Loaves

2 ½ c sifted flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
½ tsp. salt
1 c. mashed ripe bananas
1 c. sugar
¾ c. softened butter
3 eggs
1 c. finely grated carrots
½ c. chopped walnuts
½ c. raisins
1 tsp. sugar + 1 tsp. cinnamon for baking pans

Preheat the oven to 350°.

Grease two 9”x 5”x 3” loaf pans.  Mix 2 tsp. sugar and 2 tsp. cinnamon. Sprinkle half of this mixture onto the bottom of each pan. Tip the pan to spread the sugar/cinnamon mixture so it coats the bottom and the sides of the pan.

Sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.

Combine bananas, sugar, butter, and eggs in a large mixing bowl. Beat on medium speed for 2 minutes.

Stir in dry ingredients. Don’t overmix. Fold in carrots, raisins, and walnuts.

Spread mixture into loaf pans. The pans will be about ½ full. 

Bake at 350° for 50 – 60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. 

Wishing you a lovely week with lots of playtime!