Dragonfly Home Recipes

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Tag: bananas (page 1 of 3)

Maple-Banana Smoothie with Oats and Walnuts

maple smoothie on counterThe snow is melting, the sun has a promise of warmth, but the wind is still chilly and the nights are cold.  The sap is running in the sugar maple trees.  In celebration of maple syrup season, I made a delicious smoothie today, sweetened with pure maple syrup from Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.  My brother and his wife live up there, and gave us this syrup made by a friend of theirs.  It is so flavorful and pure, I feel like I am walking in the fresh north woods when I taste it.  I love using pure maple syrup as a sweetener.  It is a welcome alternative to refined sugar, and it contains minerals and antioxidants as well.  Maple syrup has gained popularity in many recipes, and I am enjoying experimenting with it. The smoothie I made this morning is full of soothing, creamy, rich nutrition with banana, yogurt, oats, and walnuts.  maple smoothie ingredients 3To me, it is the perfect combination of sweet and nourishing.  Goodness knows I needed a boost of energy this morning, and this smoothie has enough protein from the yogurt, oats, and walnuts to provide lasting energy.  My sweet son has been quite sick this week, and I have needed all the energy I could get to help take care of him. Fortunately, he is feeling much better.  I am sharing this recipe, because I hope this smoothie will help you face whatever lies ahead with strength and some enjoyment thrown in along the way.  That’s where the maple syrup comes in. It is such a lovely, natural treat. “When made in small quantities–that is, quickly from the first run of sap and properly treated–it has a wild delicacy of flavor that no other sweet can match. What you smell in freshly cut maple-wood, or taste in the blossoms of the tree, is in it. It is then, indeed, the distilled essence of the tree.” –John Burroughs, Signs and Seasons, 1886. I love the phrase “wild delicacy.”  Those two words seem to be opposites, and yet together, they describe some of the best things in life. Have a wonderful weekend! I am sharing this recipe with the many talented bloggers at Angie’s The Novice Gardener site for Fiesta Friday, hosted today by Jhuls at The Not So Creative Cook and Mila at Milkandbun. maple smoothie ingredients 2maple smoothie on porch 3maple smoothie on porch 4

Maple-Banana Smoothie with Oats and Walnuts

  • Servings: 1
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Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup old fashioned rolled oats
  • 2 tablespoons of raw walnuts
  • 1 cup plain yogurt
  • 1 banana, peeled and chopped
  • 1/2 cup milk, almond milk, or soymilk
  • 2-3 tablespoons pure maple syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Directions: Place the oats and walnuts in a blender or food processor.  Blend until the mixture resembles coarse sand.  You may need to scrape the sides and stir the mixture a bit between blending.  Then add the yogurt (Greek yogurt is great too), banana, milk, maple syrup, and vanilla.  Blend again until smooth.  If this is too thick, you can add a couple ice cubes and blend again.  If you prefer it on the thicker side (like I do), simply pour into a glass and sip with a straw and/or spoon.  Enjoy! 

Cabin Fever Cookies and Evergreens

cookies on plate 1As I was driving the kids to school this morning, I noticed a beautiful evergreen tree.  It was standing, majestic, among a bunch of trees whose leaves had long since fallen.  The deep, velvety green color caught my eye.  I have driven this stretch of road thousands of times, but have never noticed the beauty of this particular tree.  The rich, emerald green stood out against a backdrop of bleakness–white snow, brown branches of deciduous trees, and a gray-pink winter dawn sky.  This month has been so unusually cold and at times, difficult.evergreens I have done my fair share of complaining about the weather.  But to see that evergreen radiating green beauty amidst the stark whites, grays, and browns of a cold winter morning, I was reminded that acts of kindness and moments of beauty stand out more against a backdrop of bleakness.  This is not a new revelation.  I am not the first person to notice this. But the fact that I was so struck by this evergreen tells me I needed to be reminded of this.  It made me think of the shiny, tiny dime we found sparkling on the backseat of the car.  Lilac-scented soap and colorful flowers from caring souls. Clean, warm blankets.  A friend checking to make sure my mom had made it home safely from our kids’ band concert when the roads were covered with ice.  A smile from a stranger at the grocery store.  These are some of my evergreens from this winter.  I made these cookies for my family to brighten their day too. I’m sharing the recipe below, because they really are wonderful.  cookies and bananaI based the cookies on my favorite peanut butter cookie recipe from my Better Homes and Gardens New Cookbook, and then added a mashed banana to the dough.  I finished by spreading a dollop of creamy Nutella on the cooled cookies.  The cookies are moist, delicious, and even somewhat nutritious (with the peanuts and bananas).cookie doughraw cookiescookies and dishescookies on plate 3 walking in the woods

Cabin Fever Cookies

  • Servings: about 36 cookies
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Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup (one stick) butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1 and 1/4 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 ripe banana
  • Nutella for the tops of the cookies

Directions:

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.  In a large mixing bowl, vigorously stir the softened butter and peanut butter until smooth.  Add 1/2 cup of the flour, and then add the sugars, egg, baking powder, baking soda, and vanilla.  Stir well to combine.  Stir in the remaining flour.  In a small bowl, mash the banana with a fork.  Add that to the dough, and stir again to thoroughly combine.  Shape the dough into approximately one-inch balls and place on a cookie sheet, leaving about 2 inches of space between. Bake in your 375 degree oven for 7-9 minutes, or until the cookies are golden and lightly brown on the bottom.  Cool the cookies on a wire rack.  When they are cool, gently spread a bit of Nutella on the tops, if desired.  Enjoy!

Soothing Beetroot and Banana Smoothie

beetroot smoothie in glass 2As I was picking basil in our garden yesterday, I noticed that there were some beets we had not pulled up yet.  I had been craving something nourishing, so I pulled them and brought them into the house.  Since just my daughter and I were home for the evening, I decided to make us a smoothie.  It was a rainy evening–perfect for a bright, cheerful, nutrient-rich smoothie.  Because I do not have a vitamix or the equivalent, I needed to soften the beets before I blended them, so I simmered them on the stove (washed but unpeeled) for about 15 minutes.  When the beets were fork-tender, I was able to easily peel them and put them in the blender with a banana, some yogurt, and a splash of cranberry juice. (The amounts of the ingredients are included in the recipe posted below.) This smoothie was just what we needed: creamy, soothing, and beetsnutritious. Beets are well-known for their abundance of vitamin C, folate (a form of vitamin B), and minerals such as manganese, potassium, and magnesium.  And anything that is naturally such a beautiful, bright color has to be good for your body and your soul.  If you have some beets and are wondering what to do with them, this smoothie is a delicious option.

first beetbeetroot smoothie in wineglass 3

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