Thursday, April 23, 2009

Peanut Butter Banana Bars


The hunt begins for flowers for the wedding. The florist I spoke to said that a simple arrangement, like the one you see here with a bit of flare (not much, I swear), will cost between $35-45.


I don't get that? Do they sneak gold into the pedals? Sounds like Giz and I are going to make the arrangements ourselves.

What I'd really like is something like this (sorry, this is a link to the source of the flower picture below, but you have to register for the site to actually view the picture), but in burgundy and with fewer flowers (maybe five).

Do you have any experience with flowers? If I were to do this myself, what price should I anticipate? Where would you suggest looking for square vases like this?

Now...for today's post. This recipe was inspired by both R, who seems to get very stressed at the sight of bananas turning black and Ben, who is hosting his third homemade event.



Peanut Butter Banana Bars
Recipe Zaar

Ingredients
1 egg (or equivalent in egg substitute)
1/4 cup reduced-fat peanut butter
1 cup banana, ripe mashed (3 medium)
1/4 cup skim milk
2 tablespoons sugar substitute (I just used regular sugar)
1 cup flour (I used 50-50 whole wheat to all purpose flour)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda

Directions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray an 8 X 8 pan with butter flavored cooking spray. In a large bowl, combine egg, peanut butter and bananas. Mix well. Stir in milk. In a small bowl, combine sugar substitute, flour, baking powder and baking soda. Add to wet mixture slowly. Evenly spread battter into prepared pan. Bake for 20 minutes. Cut into 8 bars (I cut the portions into 16 - which would make pieces half the size of the pictures here). I also added chocolate chips. Not in the recipe - but how can you go wrong with peanut butter banana and chocolate chips?

NOTE: Make sure your sugar substitute can be used for baking.



Verdict - oh yeah baby. These are good. I had one and put the rest in the freezer for R's lunches. I was worried that it would lack sweetness, but it really doesn't. StumbleUpon

28 comments:

Steph said...

Those bars look so good! I like how they actually look like bars and not banana bread. I agree, flowers are sooo expensive and the sad part is how quickly they die or get ruined.

5 Star Foodie said...

Peanut butter, banana, and chocolate chips - this is a winner for sure!

Laura @ Hungry and Frozen said...

These sound really good. And I have a ton of bananas taking up space in the freezer. Good luck finding flowers - aren't they just ridiculously expensive!!

girlichef said...

These bars are awesome...love bananas, pb & chocolate together (I usually eat that combo w/ vanilla custard)...wish I had some knowledge to lend you on the flowers, but alas...I know nothing.

Ben said...

$35 for that arrangement? WOW Sorry I don't know anything about making your own (maybe that could be the next theme of homemade? LOL) but I bet you can do a great job for a lot less :D

Thanks for sending this delicious recipe to my event. They look really good :D

Joelen said...

Peanut butter and banana is a fabulous combo and this looks delicious!

kat said...

Flowers for weddings are outrageous! I was lucky & a friend offered to do mine as a wedding gift. For vases I would suggest Ikea or a craft store like Michaels

Steph said...

Hi Psychgrad! Yep, it was the Wilton 1M tip. Instead of starting on the outside for the swirl, you just start in the middle and pipe around. It's really easy and fast so it would be great if you're pressed for time. The SMBC was a little soft so I'm not sure if it will hold up to heat. Adding peach + mango jam (I just used ED smith more fruit) was not such a great idea. At the time, I thought it would add flavour, but it was so weak, people weren't exactly sure what they were tasting..haha. My cousin asked me if it was cream cheese! Maybe another flavour might work better or just skip it. Although I added 1/2 tsp of instant coffee once and everyone seemed to like it.

I remember Smitten Kitchen did her wedding cake posts and made SMBC. She said that it held up in a non air conditioned room, but there was also no sunlight so if it's outside I don't know and her recipe had a little more butter. SMBC is the best though because it is sooo creamy and it doesn't crust. Crusting frosting grosses me a little..haha.

The SMBC I made from howtoeatacupcake.net is really good because it doesn't taste like a stick of butter. Most SMBCs use a ridiculous amount of butter, but I think this one uses just enough to hold everything together. Sometimes I add 1-2 more tablespoons if it's not coming together after whipping for a long time. The best part about frosting is that you can keep whipping until it works.. unlike cake batter, which I always have this fear of overmixing.

I halved the frosting recipe, but I think it's easier to make the full version in the stand mixer so the egg whites can beat easier instead of sitting at the bottom. If you're adding jam, I guess it could be to taste because I just kept adding and adding until I realized that this peach mango jam just wasn't such a great choice. It curdled as I kept adding, but came together quickly as I beat it.

If you're looking for a shortening type frosting, I've seen some people use the one from whimsical bakehouse. It's supposedly less sweet unlike most frostings of the powdered sugar variety and since there's some butter it might help cut down on the slickness of shortening. Also, they pour boiling water in the powdered sugar, which is supposed to 'cook out' the starch. I've never made it though. I can't eat frosting w/ icing sugar because the grittiness and starch taste really gets to me.

I hope this helps, a weekend of baking cupcakes sounds like fun! Btw, if you're testing out vanilla cupcakes, try Amy Sedaris'. It's really good, but make sure you make it the normal cake way instead of how she just dumps everything in and bake at 350.

Steph

Juliana said...

Such an interesting combination of flavor...I am sure my husband will like it since he loves peanut butter, chocolate and banana. Cannot go wrong! Love your flowers pictures.

Lori Lynn said...

Stressed over black bananas. hahaha

They look really good, no more stress, R!

Elra said...

PB banana bars, that sounds so delicious, especially when you added chocolate chunks... perfect!
Cheers,
elra

Ricki said...

Wow, that DOES seem rather steep for so few flowers!

The bars, on the other hand, are priceless ;)

Bunny said...

Here's a link to glass square vases, you get a 15% discount if you order before April 28th, I know not a lot of time but they do look nice!
http://www.candles4less.com/candleholders/Square-Holders-Vases?gclid=CJCApLGCi5oCFQVinAodCyp0Pw

Love the bars!!!

That Girl said...

You definitely need to shop around with a florist. The first one we spoke to was three times the price of the one we ended up with. I think our centerpieces were $35 a table and they had roses, orchids, hydrangeas, and more.

noble pig said...

Holy cow that is pretty amazing, wow!

Grace said...

another great use for bananas past their prie. i love the chips sprinkled on top and that you cut them into rectangles instead of squares. :)

Steph said...

No problem! Since it's air conditioned, I would definitely go with SMBC.. Since Giz mentioned about the wedding being in June, for some reason I was thinking it would be outside for some reason..haha.

Cakelaw said...

The price they charge for flowers is often quite exy - what you have quoted is about the same we'd have to pay here. Your peanut butter bars look delicious!

Springtime said...

The bars look great! I'm going through a peanut butter phase, so I may just have to have a go at miaking these!

Kevin said...

Peanut butter and bananas is a great combo. I like the sound of using them in bars. the bars look really good!

Proud Italian Cook said...

I always see brides to be, buying their flowers from Costco and making their own arrangements. Do you have Costco their?

Psychgrad said...

Proud Italian Cook - we do have Costco here...but the only flowers I see there are a very small section with prearranged bouquets. I've put my dad on the job...so hopefully I'll have some solutions soon.

Dragon said...

I love banana and chocolate together, add peanut butter and this is just about perfect.

Nick said...

These sound great to me, although I could have sworn I saw those exact pictures somewhere yesterday...but I don't remember coming here...

Psychgrad said...

Nick - I'm sure they're the ones I took (with the exception of the nice flower centrepiece above). I'd be interested to know where else you might have seen them.

Ferdzy said...

Mm, great sounding combo.

As for square vases: seriously, try a dollar store.

Ruth E said...

I'm drooling at these, they look fabulous!

Ben said...

Took me a while, but the round up is finally up, yay! Thanks for participating :) http://whatscooking.us/2009/05/05/homemade-4-tortillas/

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