Thursday, June 19, 2014

Baking Instead of Nesting

At this point a few people have asked me if the nesting instinct has kicked in yet.  The answer is no, it hasn't, and I'd be mighty surprised if it did.  You see, I hate having furniture moved around so much that in the past roommates have deliberately waited until I was out of town for the weekend before making any changes.

Not only that, but there's not much I could do if any sort of nesting instinct did kick in - in the trailer there is no room for a nursery, and we're preparing (slowly but surely) to move into the new house mainly by getting rid of anything not essential and/or nailed down.  We seriously might end up going old school and putting the baby into a dresser drawer lined with a blanket.  CLASSY.

Instead of any sort of nesting urge, I have been experiencing a strong need to BAKE.

For some reason, deep down I feel like being able to whip out a cake or pie or other baked good is central to motherhood.  I've been hunting down new 8x8 dessert recipes like a maniac, which to my mind is the perfect size - enough to feed a small group, but without massive amounts of leftovers hanging around.

I've made chocolate cake, key lime pie, blondies, snicker-doodle bar cookies, and more.  Some were keepers and some were flops (blondies, I'm looking at YOU).

One recipe I've tried that Jack and I LOVED was monkey bread.  I had vaguely heard of it before, but had never eaten it, much less made it.  A lot of the recipes I found online either used nasty canned biscuit dough OR involved making your own yeast dough, which seemed like a LOT of work for such a basic dessert.

Luckily I found that Trader Joe's has some canned buttermilk biscuit dough that is entirely made of recognizable ingredients!  This seemed like a good compromise between convenience and making something I'd be comfortable eating.

It took some searching to find a monkey bread that only used 1 container of biscuit dough and baked in a loaf pan.  A lot of the monkey bread recipes I found online apparently assumed you were going to feed an ARMY and called for 2 or 3 (or sometimes even more) containers of biscuit dough.

Basically to make monkey bread you take your biscuit dough, cut it into bite-sized pieces, toss them in a cinnamon-sugar mixture, pile into a loaf pan, drizzle with melted butter, and bake.  You can also add other additions to mix it up - chopped nuts, raisins, whatever tickles your fancy!

 Loaf Pan Monkey Bread Recipe
1 container of buttermilk biscuits
1/2 cup sugar
1 TBS cinnamon
1/3 cup melted butter

1.) Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.  Cut your biscuit dough into bite-sized pieces (a lot of recipes recommend cutting each biscuit into 4 pieces, but I cut mine smaller).

2.) Toss the 1/2 cup of sugar and the 1 TBS of cinnamon in a large plastic bag.  As you cut up each biscuit, toss it into the bag and shake to coat all the dough pieces with the cinnamon-sugar mixture.  You'll probably have some cinnamon-sugar mixture left once all the dough is coated.

3.) Once all your dough is coated and piled in the loaf pan, drizzle with the 1/3 cup of melted butter.

4.) Bake 20 - 25 minutes.  Let cool 5 minutes, then flip over onto a serving plate.  Pull off puffs of delicious cinnamon-sugar goodness and enjoy!

1 comment:

  1. These look amazing. I'll need to find a gluten free version.