Sunday, November 15, 2009

Chocolate Class and Birthday Surprises and I Like Big Bundts—Banana Chocolate Chip Cinnamon Bundt Cake

Saturday was a busy, full day.  I was asked by some ladies at church to do a one hour class for an all day craft day about whatever cooking/baking I choose.  We do this every year and the cooking class is always my favorite thing to participate in--until I was asked to actually DO the class.   (People know I bake a lot and most know about my blog, so because of this, they assume I have knowledge to share.  I fool a lot people. ;)  I have prepped for this class for weeks and after hummin' and hawin' about what to do, I had narrowed it down to a subject definitely near and dear to me---CHOCOLATE!  I decided to share a bunch of my favorite recipes that have chocolate.  I made samples of each thing so there was a tasting table available throughout the class.  I wanted to do some simple things that are my go-to recipes as well as some things I just think are really yummy that have chocolate.  I showed the class how to make a few things, like a simple cake, my favorite brownies, some fun fudge and a couple other things.



I would tell you all the things I made and presented as I have links and recipes for each thing, but it would take too long right now.  So I will in another post.  As stressful as doing something like this class was for me, it was fun to do all the baking and prep for it and I made sure everyone took most of it home!  I’m glad it’s over!  On to the birthday! ;)


When I got home from the class around 3 o'clock, Kevin surprised me by telling me he'd made an appointment for me to get a massage and that while I was gone to that, he and the boys would be making me dinner.  I have not had very many massages in my life, but this was  the big one hour long kind and it felt great.  (Thanks, Hon!!!)  While I was gone, Kevin and the boys made pork chops, mashed sweet potatoes, asparagus, fruit salad and a 2-layer chocolate cake!  You'll never guess who picked to help with the cake?  Taylor!  Now I've always said here that no one really likes cake at our house.  But for a big birthday celebration, Taylor wanted to make me a cake.  And do you know what, everyone ate cake.  And let this go on record, Kevin ate two pieces!

Look at this cake!  GREAT job Taylor and Kevin!


I let Scott take a few pictures.


Let's eat cake!


I'm glad I had helpers for those four candles on the cake (one candle for each decade old I am.  Gasp.)

I wanted to document that everyone ate cake.  And it was good, even if it was a boxed cake mix and canned frosting!  Maybe that's the trick to get them to eat cake!




Sam was having a fit because he wanted his cake cut into bite size pieces.


Taylor being Taylor.


Got him.



Look how much cake we ate!


And to think that was all just for the day BEFORE my birthday.  My birthday just so happens to be on National Bundt Cake Day.

So, of course I HAD to make a bundt today!  I really wanted to show my support to the amazing Mary at The Food Librarian, because I certainly didn’t need more cake! ;)  You must check out Mary’s 30 Days of I Like Big Bundts.  I cannot lie, I like them, too! ;)  So my bundt today has, um, chocolate—check,  banana—check, nuts—check and cinnamon.  You see, I fell in love with this amazing Banana Chocolate Chip Cinnamon Coffee Cake a few months ago that I originally found over at Donna’s blog, My Tasty Treasures.  So I decided to make my bundt cake from this recipe.


I love this bundt cake!  It turned out moist inside with just the right amount of slight crispness on the outside you get from a bundt.  I kicked it up a notch by drizzling on a simple powdered sugar vanilla glaze and sprinkling on some cacao nibs I bought in San Francisco at the Scharfen Berger store when I was there in September for the Food BlogHer conference.  Love the crunch!  Inside this bundt is a nice ripple layer of the cinnamon/chocolate chip/walnut/brown sugar streusel that is also used with the coffee cake.  Mmmm!


You see that deliciousness?


After having a small piece of this and a little sliver of the chocolate cake to celebrate my birthday tonight, I was stuffed.  I don’t often stuff myself until I’m full anymore, but this took it over the top for me.  Hey, you only have birthdays once a year, right!  ‘Sides, this is a big birthday for me so I needed to celebrate with a big bundt! ;)  Mary, what a great thing you’ve done for the food world posting all these bundts we’ll always have to look at and go to for some great recipes!  And thanks so much for the shout out about my birthday.  I had no idea you did that and could not for the life of me figure out how so many people knew it was my birthday today!  You little sneak! ;)  (Thanks.)

For the bundt, I used the coffee cake recipe I’ve linked above on a previous post of mine, but I used coconut oil for the butter, whole wheat pastry flour instead of all purpose flour and I halved the streusel since it wasn’t going to be used as topping, just in the middle. 

Banana Chocolate Chip Cinnamon Bundt Cake, by Katrina Smith, adapted from Bon Appetit 2003 Banana Chocolate Chip Coffee Cake

6 tablespoons mini chocolate chips

1/3 cup brown sugar, packed

1/4 cup walnuts, toasted and chopped

1 to 1  1/2  teaspoons ground cinnamon (to taste)

1 ½ cups whole wheat pastry flour (all purpose would be fine)

¾ teaspoon baking soda

¾ teaspoon baking powder

¼ teaspoon salt

¾ cup granulated sugar

½ cup coconut oil (unsalted butter or canola oil would be fine)

1 large egg

1 1/3 cups mashed very ripe bananas  (I used 5 small very ripe bananas)

3 tablespoons buttermilk

Powdered sugar glaze--

1  1/4 cup powdered sugar

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

pinch of salt

2 tablespoons milk

2 tablespoons cacao nibs (or mini chocolate chips)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a bundt cake pan (or an 8x8 inch baking pan). In medium bowl, stir chocolate chips, brown sugar, walnuts and cinnamon together. Set aside. In another bowl, combine flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt. In bowl of electric mixer, beat oil/butter, sugar and egg until fluffy. Scrape down sides of bowl. Add mashed bananas and buttermilk and mix until well combined. Stir in dry ingredients to combine, but don’t overmix.

Spread half the batter evenly into the prepared pan. Sprinkle with the streusel mixture. Repeat with remaining batter.  Bake cake until toothpick inserted into center comes out clean, about 30-35 minutes.  Cool in pan on wire rack for 15 minutes.  Remove bundt cake to cool completely on wire rack.

In a medium sized bowl, whisk together the glaze ingredients until lump free and smooth.  Put glaze in a plastic zip top bag, snip a little corner off the bag and drizzle over cake.  Sprinkle with cacao nibs or mini chocolate chips.  Serve.


Also for my birthday dinner, I made Texas Style Beef Brisket that I saw on Megan’s awesome blog, My Baking Adventures.  The boys don’t really like BBQ sauce (Kevin loves it!), so I used the juice from roasting the brisket and made a sauce with it that I poured over the beef.  We also had baked potatoes and salad. 

And I got some nice gifts from Kevin and the boys for my big day. 


A couple of cookbooks on my “wish list”—can’t wait to look through Ree’s new book, The Pioneer Woman Cooks as well as David Lebovitz’ Great Book of Chocolate and the Lion House Bakery book!  I’ve also not had a hand mixer for years and decided it would be nice to have one.  As well as a mortar and pestle and some little tart pans.  Thanks, Kevin!!!  One thing that is my favorite part of having a birthday, was watching Parker and Taylor flitter around drawing me pictures and wrapping them up to give me for my birthday.  THESE are really the gifts that are so special to me!  Thanks, Guys!  I love you.





Do I look 40?  Sigh.  I actually don’t feel 40 and really can’t believe I am.  So we’ll just keep saying 39, right.


Thanks, Everyone, for all the birthday wishes, too!


Leslie said...

You definitely don't look 40! Happy birthday (and it would be with a chocolate cake baked by your little guys!)

Art and Appetite said...

Happy birthday Katrina!

Your family is soooooooooo sweet, I'm sure you are sooo proud of them.

By the way, the cakes looks soo moist and delish. Did you save some for me?

Again, Happy birthday!

Emily said...

Happy Birthday! This looks like a fun day. I can't belivee you got a massage. I'm very jealous. And both of the cakes look delicious!

I hope you had a great day!

Angela KL said...

Happy (Belated) Birthday Katrina.. yes, a littl 'sneak' (Mary) told me so. Great to see the family coming together to prepare dinner and celebrate your birthday!

♥peachkins♥ said...

Happy Birthday Katrina! you have a very sweet, cake, dinner, massage....oh my, I'm sure it made your day!

Donna-FFW said...

Happy Birthday you sweet lady. All that cooking, the table looked gorgeous, I cant wait to read what you made..

Great idea turning the coffee cake into a bundt with wonderful adaptaonms, Ill have to try them. Thanks again for the mention.

Amanda said...

Do you look 40? You look BEAUTIFUL my friend! HAPPY BIRTHDAY! What a great bunch of gifts, a fabulous cake and all from a wonderful family :) :)

I meant to come over here last night but my laptop battery died and I was too pooped to go upstairs and plug it in - sorry :-/

I didn't make a bundt for NBD, but instead I celebrated by buying myself a new bundt pan. Mine was crap, so it was time :)

Clumbsy Cookie said...

Nice!!! Sounds like 2 great days with a lot of cakes and joy! You sure deserved it, it's so nice that you have a family that values you :)! Of course you don't look 40! You're like me, now that I turned 30 I'll start have bithday backwords. So on my next I'll be 29. Sounds perfect, eh?

Lisa Ernst said...

Happy 40th! I would not have guessed. Your Bundt looks wonderful, I could reach out and take a bite.

Leslie said...

Happy happy birthday to you!
I bet you massage was heavenly!!!

Stephanie said...

Your birthday totally rocked! There was so much chocolaty goodness in your house...can I come over if you have leftovers? ;)

Fallon said...

Happy Birthday!! I would of never guessed you were 40. Look look 30! I think it's all that chocolate ;)

Dave said...

Oh my everything look extremely delicious...Now I'm So hungry and suddenly have an urge for some Chocolate Cake:)

Maria said...

Glad you had a great birthday! I love both cakes.

Welcome to our crazy blessed life said...

Crud! I had every intention of coming over to say Happy Birthday yesterday. So, happy birthday today! :) You don't look at day over 30! ;)
Love how involved all of your kiddos got. So sweet! I just bought the Pioneer Woman cookbook so I can take it to the signing in Nashville on Dec 8th. Can't wait to see what you make from your new books!

Bake My Breath Away said...

Happy Birthday Katrina!! You look amazing and so do your goodies!

Valerie said...

Happy birthday! Glad you got to spend time with your family. That bundt cake looks so perfectly like something I'd devour. (And I was shocked to see you were turning 40. You don't look it all.)

The Sugar Fiend said...

I see your boys 'suffered' through the frosting ;) How cute--today you get to choose the treat!

Happy Birthday--and happy baking! Looks like soon you'll have to retitle your blog 'baking with my boys!'

Anonymous said...

Happy Belated Birthday!

Are you going to see pioneer woman tonight on the Plaza? I work literally across the street but don't have time.

LOVE the national champions shirt!

Anonymous said...

Happy birthday! It looks like you had a wonderful celebration! At least chocolate cake and a massage sounds perfect to me :)

Great going with the class. I get so nervous about stuff like that, but I bet you were great and the people enjoyed it.

Anonymous said...

Wow! You definitely rock your age! Congrats on the successful baking class. Happy National Bundt Day!!

noble pig said...

Glad it was wonderful, especially the massage...OMG it's been too long since I had one!!

Unplanned Cooking said...

First of all, sign me up for your class! And second of all, what a sweetie your husband is! Happy Birthday!

Becky said...

Happy Birthday! What a treat you had waiting for you at home, CAKE! and it was devoured by your crew too! Your bundt cake looked so moist and yummy. I love the word bundt, reminds me of "My Big Fat Greek Wedding", love that movie.

Megan said...

Happy birthday again, Katrina. It looks like you had a fabulous day - and check out your loot! Can't wait to see what you bake up.

Carla said...

Happy birthday! Let me know what you do with the mortar and pestle. I bought one but no clue what to crush besides herbs.

I'm sad I missed bundt cake day :(

Anonymous said...

Belated Happy Birthday Wishes! I hope you're still celebrating at least a little. :-)
I love the photos from your class. I understand why you found it stressful, but it looks like you did a GREAT job!!

Meagan said...

Yummm! Now I'm craving chocolate cake and ice cream! Happy birthday!

The Food Librarian said...

Happppppy Happppppy Birthday and Bundt Day! You are so lucky to have your bday fall on both days! :) What a fun-filled birthday! Your boys are precious and too cute! Love the karaoke mortal and pestle too! And thanks for baking along with me for National Bundt Day!

Um, now we are on the countdown for my birthday on Dec 7th! hee hee - mary the food librarian

absolutejackie said...

Happy Belated Birthday and thanks for the wonderful cooking tips!
I love chocolate and also happen to work with DOVE I would like to recommend to you- (for your chocolate recipes) to use shaved DOVE Chocolate, perhaps the Dark chocolate. I look forward to seeing what your recipe will be;)

Warm Wishes,
DOVE Chocolate Team

Mimi said...

Happy belated birthday Katrina. Your family did a great job!I'd like to have that bundt cake for my birthday.

Anonymous said...

Holy cow, what a birthday celebration! That's awesome that you gave a baking class at church - your goodies look just wonderful! A birthday massage, home cooked meal and a baked birthday cake sounds like the perfect way to celebrate your 40th (no way do you look 40!)! That banana bundt sounds delicious and looks it too!
I have the same hand mixer and I like it better than my KitchenAid! Now I want a mortar and pestle! =)

Max and Deborah said...

What a great Birthday!!!! I have been trying to get a phone call to you, but I never have a moment when I figure out the two hour differences. I hope your 40th birthday rocked!!!! Can you believe it!!!! I love you Treeni, and wish you the best year yet!

where are you moving to?

spike. said...

Wow- you've been busy! Hope you had a great birthday!

Valerie said...

Yeah, there is the cake recipe, but yours looks so pretty! I think the addition of coconut oil sounds really good. Next time I want to try a new banana recipe, I'll come to your blog! Silly me not to think of it before.