Kristen of Frugal Antics of a Harried Homemaker is a third generation professional baker/caterer and a mother of 5! Creativity is a necessity when juggling various jobs and obligations. As an artisan baker, Kristen has issued a monthly challenge to herself and other food bloggers to improvise with a couple of ingredients. January’s items were bananas and nutmeg.
Going along with the Ninja Baker motto of always “seeking the sweet stuff of life” (such as fun!), I went bananas in the kitchen and whipped up the following 3 treats:
1. Nutella Bundt
I never knew about Nutella in Japan. Now that I am in the US, I can rave about this hazelnut chocolate spread like all the other kids on the block.
Baking the Nutella Bundt brought a whole new meaning to heavenly smells. Click here for the recipe. If you want the divine enhancement and experience of banana and nutmeg, substitute half of the butter with mushed up banana. Also, add a ½ teaspoon of nutmeg and 1 teaspoon of Penzeys Cake Spice (which includes nutmeg as one the ingredients.)
Honestly, the Bundt is rich and moist with chocolately, nutty, spicy goodness and doesn’t need frosting. But it is not particularly filled with banana flavor so I created a buttercream where banana is the star.
The Ninja Baker’s Banana Buttercream
½ cup coconut spread (found in the butter section of Whole Foods)
½ cup of no hydrogenated oils vegetable shortening (in other words, healthy Crisco)
¾ teaspoon banana extract
5 ½ tablespoons of milk
4 cups of powdered sugar (sifted is better)
1 generous tablespoon of meringue powder
1 teaspoon vanilla powder
Using the paddle attachment on your KitchenAid or by employing a very strong electric mixer, combine the coconut spread, the shortening, extract and milk. Slowly add in the sugar, vanilla and meringue powders.
P.s. I had to rush out to an appointment so I put my frosting in the refrigerator. We’ve had a cold snap of 50-degree weather in California (hear the violin music?), my buttercream refused to soften. So, I carefully added a soupçon (a ½ tablespoon or so) of hot water, remixed in the KitchenAid for a minute and it was perfect for piping.
2. Won Ton Crisps with Banana Cream Pudding
Into cooled won ton crisps (made with a butter cooking sprayed mini muffin tin in a 375 degree oven for 5 minutes), I scooped in a mini dollop of banana cream pudding to which I added a ¼ teaspoon of nutmeg. For garnish, I piped chocolate pudding dots.
3. Chocolate Filled Won Tons with Banana Buttercream
I filled cooled won ton crisps (see above for the easy instructions) with chocolate pudding and garnished with leftover Ninja Baker Banana Buttercream. (Scroll up for the recipe.)
Wishing you spurts of going bananas with creativity!
The Ninja Baker
The Ninja Baker
© ™ Watkinson 2012
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