After seeing I think the 20th place, we have finally come to a decision on places to live. Hurrah! No more endlessly looking for places, touring around places…… It gets kinda dull after a while. One of our things we were looking for was lots of storage, and a nice big kitchen for me to play in. But, Mr M also wanted the full California experience of a pool etc. so we came to a bit of a compromise on storage and went for an apartment in this really nice complex, which is thankfully a little bit closer to civilisation than our current temporary place, but also has a walk in wardrobe, and plenty of cupboards! Score!
Yesterday I had a little explore and took the VTA down to San Jose in search of Doughnuts. Or Psycho Donuts in fact. Not bad, similar in style of doughnut to Voodoo Doughnut, I will have to continue my search for an American replacement for Pippin!
The knitting and cross stitch are also still in progress, but I thought it was time to get on with some study and stuff, we have the first part of our driving tests next week, and I want to get on with my science and baking learning that I wanted to do……
A little bit of procrastination first, I checked out the cupboards and came up with this:
Banana, Chocolate, and Ginger Softies Recipe – an adaptation of this one
3/4 cup/ 172g sugar
1 3/4 cups/ 275g plain flour
1 1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1/4 tsp salt.
1/3 cup/ 75g oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
2/3 cups (about 2 medium sized/ 235g) banana, mashed NB. mine were 2 very ripe bananas that I put in the freezer a few days ago as they had gone past eating stage, take them out an hour or two before use and allow to defrost, then cut off the end and gently squeeze out the insides. Instant mashed banana.
1/2 cup/ 80g chocolate chips *optional
Preheat the oven to 180C/ 350F, and line two baking trays with baking paper.
Combine the sugar, flour, cornstarch, ginger, bicarbonate of soda, and salt in a bowl.
Add the oil, vanilla, and banana and mix. If you find it is too dry to come together, use a small amount of milk (non-dairy if you want to keep them vegan, I used Almond) and mix until it forms a dough.
*optional: Add the chocolate chips and mix just enough so that they are evenly distributed.
Place spoonfuls of mixture separated by a couple of inches (as they will spread in the oven) onto the prepared trays, and bake for 10-15 minutes. NB. my oven is rubbish, and it took more like 30 minutes until they were done, so just check after 15 minutes, you want them to be lightly browned and firm to the touch, but not hard.
Allow to firm up on the trays, then remove to wire racks to cool down completely.
Tasty! But the ginger was a little subtle, so next time I might up it to 2 tsp, but then I like a big hit of ginger in my baked goods!
You can omit the chocolate chips if you like, especially if you want to keep them vegan and don’t have any vegan-friendly ones to hand. Without the addition of the chocolate chips you might even say that these are reasonably healthy. But who wants to be completely healthy?