Egg-free Banana Cake with Chocolate Buttercream Frosting


 Egg-Free Banana Cake
2 cups flour
1 cup quick oats
1/2 cup sugar
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 tablespoons baking powder
5 ripe, mashed bananas
1 tablespoon vanilla
1 teaspoons lemon peel
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/3 cup orange juice

Preheat oven to 350.
Spray two 8 inch pans with non-stick cooking spray.
In a large bowl, combine flour, oats, both sugars, baking soda, & baking powder. Then, stir in the rest of the ingredients. If batter is too thick (hard to stir), add a small amount of juice.
Bake for 35-45 minutes or until golden brown.
Cool on a wire rack.

Chocolate Buttercream Frosting
2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
3 cups powdered sugar
½ cup cocoa powder
½ teaspoon table salt
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
4 tablespoons milk

Cream butter for 2-3 minutes in a mixer with the paddle attachment on medium speed.
Turn off the mixer & sift powdered sugar and cocoa into the mixing bowl.
Turn the mixer on the lowest speed until the sugar and cocoa are absorbed by the butter.
Increase mixer speed to medium, add vanilla extract, salt, and milk & beat for 3 minutes.
*If your frosting needs a thicker consistency, add a little more sugar. If your frosting needs to be thinned, add additional milk 1 tablespoon at a time.
Put frosting on the cooled cakes and enjoy…be careful because it’s very addicting!

5-Ingredient Granola Bars


4 cups quick cooking oats
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup honey
1 cup peanut butter
3/4 to 1 cup mini-chocolate chips, raisins, walnuts or anything you like

Heat oven to 350 & spray a 9×13 pan with cooking spray.
Mix all ingredients in a large bowl.
Press firmly into pan and bake for 16-18 minutes.
Let cool and enjoy.


Mini Raspberry Cobblers


Cobblers – Makes 4

1 cup fresh raspberries
2 Tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup sugar, divided
1/2 cup flour
1/4 cup milk
1 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon table salt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup warm water

Preheat oven to 350. Line 4 ramekins with raspberries (about 9 each) and place on a baking sheet.

In a medium bowl, mix butter, 1/4 cup sugar, flour, milk, baking powder, salt and vanilla. Spoon a heaping tablespoon of batter over the fruit and spread evenly.

Mix remaining 1/4 cup sugar and 1/4 cup warm water. Pour evenly over each ramekin.

Bake for 28-30 minutes, until topping is golden brown and fruit is bubbling.

Serve warm with vanilla whipped cream (recipe below).


Vanilla Whipped Cream – Makes about 1 cup

1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
1/8 cup powdered sugar
1/4 tsp. vanilla extract

In a medium bowl, beat cream until it begins to thicken. Add powdered sugar and vanilla, and beat until soft peaks form. Store in the refrigerator until ready to use. This is so delicious and so easy!


Spaghetti Puttanesca

I make this spaghetti puttanesca recipe all of the time – it’s oh so tasty. It’s quick, easy and the whole family loves it. The kids especially like nibbling on the olives beforehand.

  1. 1 pound spaghetti
  2. Coarse salt and ground pepper
  3. 3 garlic cloves, minced
  4. 1 can (28 ounces) diced tomatoes, and their juice
  5. 2-4 tablespoons capers (I like a lot)
  6. 1/2- 3/4 cup chopped pitted kalamata olives

-Cook spaghetti
-Meanwhile, heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add garlic, mashing them with a wooden spoon. Cook, stirring, until garlic is fragrant, 2 minutes.
-Add tomatoes and their juice, mashing up tomatoes with spoon. Stir in capers, olives, salt & pepper. Bring to a boil; reduce heat. Simmer until thickened, 5 to 10 minutes. Toss with pasta and top with fresh parm.
**If I don’t have time to use fresh garlic (which is often), I use a garlic powder after I mash-up the tomatoes.



Baked Chickpeas
(they taste like slightly cooked popcorn kernels, mmm)
1 can chickpeas
olive oil cooking spray
sea salt or kosher salt

Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees. Drain and wash the chickpeas. Pick off any loose skin. Pat dry and spread out over a Silpat or parchment paper on a rimmed cookie sheet. Spray lightly with olive oil cooking spray and place in the center rack in the oven. Cook for 15 to 20 minutes and then give them a shake. Continue to cook for another  15 to 20 minutes or until chickpeas are crispy & browned, but not burned. Remove from oven, sprinkle with salt (or any seasonings you like) and then let cool.


Kettle Corn
Ingredients: 1/4 cup cooking oil 1/2 cup popcorn kernels 1/4 cup granulated sugar

In a large pot, heat oil over medium high heat. When oil is hot, add the popcorn kernels and sugar. Stir constantly to prevent sugar from burning. When popping starts, cover with lid. Shake the pot over burner during popping, so the sugar and popcorn don’t burn. When popping has slowed to 2-3 seconds apart, pull popcorn off heat and pour into a large bowl. When it slightly cools, stir to help prevent clumps.

popcorn   popcorn1


Curried Butternut Squash & Corn Chowder
Adapted from “Everyday Food” & “Ezra Pound Cake

•2 tablespoons vegetable oil
•1 1/2 pounds butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into 1-inch chunks (about 5 cups)
-I often buy Trader Joe’s pre-cut.
•1 medium onion, chopped
•1 1/4 cups frozen corn
•1 1/2+ teaspoons curry powder
•Kosher salt and ground pepper
•3 1/2 cups vegetable broth
•1/2 cup heavy cream
•Garnish with fresh parm and don’t forget the crusty bread!

  1. In a large heavy pot, heat oil over medium-high; add squash and onion. Cook until the onion is soft, about 10 minutes.
  2. Add the corn and curry powder. Cook until you can really smell the curry, about 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
  3. Add the broth, and simmer until the squash is tender, about 20 minutes.
  4. Using an immersion blender, food processor, or countertop blender, blend until smooth. Return to pot, and turn the heat down to medium-low.
  5. Stir in the cream & be careful not to let it boil.

dinner6  dinner10  dinner9  dinner8

Dinner4  Dinner3


30 Responses to “Recipes”

  1. JoAnn March 1, 2013 at 1:02 pm #

    Thanks for liking my Sourdough Oatmeal Raisin Cookies. Puttanesca is one of my favorite sauces, especially with anchovies.

    • In Real Life March 1, 2013 at 2:40 pm #

      I like the anchovies too, but husband doesn’t:(

  2. Po' Girl Shines March 7, 2013 at 8:19 am #

    I’m going to try the baked chickpeas for sure and love any kind of squash/pumpkin soups!

    • In Real Life March 7, 2013 at 8:40 am #

      The soup is so good and so easy! I was making it every week for awhile:)

  3. Lisa March 7, 2013 at 11:47 pm #

    Oh I will be busy with all your recipes

  4. Expat State of Mind March 8, 2013 at 2:43 pm #

    I am going to try the chickpea roasted in the oven. Sounds really good and healthy. Thank you for sharing.

  5. Kasha March 11, 2013 at 4:04 pm #

    I’m truly impressed that your children eat olives. My son is such a beige eater…

    • In Real Life March 11, 2013 at 4:08 pm #

      They’ll eat almost anything. We’re pretty lucky there!

  6. luluandthemoon March 12, 2013 at 6:51 pm #

    Looking forward to trying the baked chickpeas. Thanks.

  7. Christine March 12, 2013 at 9:00 pm #

    Thanks for stopping by & liking !
    I just checked out a few of your posts & I can’t wait to try the granola bar recipe. Yum!

  8. deeptiseri March 13, 2013 at 12:43 am #

    Thanks for liking my blog!!!your blog looks yummy 🙂

  9. insanitymostly March 13, 2013 at 9:27 am #

    How great! We always do our regular popcorn on the stovetop and I’ve been meaning to find a good kettle corn recipe. This one looks tasty and easy.

    Thanks for liking my posts!
    Julia (

  10. Seven2sevenmom March 13, 2013 at 11:15 am #

    I love your Mini Raspberry Cobblers. I can only imagine how happy your little ones must be to have such a chef mama!

    • In Real Life March 13, 2013 at 12:38 pm #

      Thanks! They do love it, especially when they can help:)

  11. egangauntt March 18, 2013 at 8:39 pm #

    those mini raspberry cobblers look amazing. my kids would be so happy to find those for dessert!!!

  12. hanspreller1Hans March 19, 2013 at 1:30 am #

    Hey , you write your recipes like in a cook book ,cool ,am not a writer rather a teacher and thats how i describe my recipes ,and hope anyone can follow.:)

  13. chardrap March 19, 2013 at 8:37 am #

    Going to have to try your Mini raspberry cobblers – though I may try mixed berries instead! Thanks for popping along to my blog and liking cooking challenge Home made crumpets! 🙂

    • In Real Life March 19, 2013 at 5:26 pm #

      I think I’ll try mixed berries next time, yum!

  14. citymeetscountry March 20, 2013 at 8:37 am #

    Thank you for liking my chocolate chunk cookies! Is it wrong to want to eat your cobblers for breakfast?! These look great! Have you used flaxseed or chia seed for egg replacements in baking? They really help as a binder 🙂 Best!

    • In Real Life March 20, 2013 at 8:43 am #

      Your cookies look delicious! I wouldn’t say it’s wrong to eat cobbler for breakfast, there’s fruit in it. Yes, I use the flax-egg quite often – it works great (usually).

  15. Dot March 20, 2013 at 8:55 am #

    The recipes look awesome. Alas I can’t try them yet until I reach my goal weight. Thanks for following my blog ( Of course, I’ll be posting low carb recipes but I’ll try to post great photos like you 🙂

  16. oliveoilgarlicparsley March 20, 2013 at 12:21 pm #

    Hm, you’ve got some lovely recipes there, I esepecially like the sound of the granola and the baked chick peas with olive oil, both dairy-free as well as egg-free, much appreciated in our house.

  17. thinkreadcook March 26, 2013 at 2:59 pm #

    Kettlecorn… my husband will be happy! Thanks for sharing.

  18. johnandmarylivingitupinecuador April 8, 2013 at 7:17 pm #

    yummy recipes !

  19. terrepruitt April 9, 2013 at 6:23 pm #

    I love roasted garbanzo beans. In fact. I bought some to make this past weekend and I forgot. Hmmm . . . . . 🙂

    • In Real Life April 9, 2013 at 6:52 pm #

      I plan to make some again this weekend, so tasty:)

      • terrepruitt April 9, 2013 at 8:07 pm #

        Yes. I use season salt and/or garlic salt!

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