609 posts and five years later…
Tomorrow is my five year blogiversary. I seriously can’t believe it. When I started my blog I had no expectations and I had no idea what I was doing (and sometimes I still don’t think I have a clue). It was and still is a hobby that I’m very passionate about. I enjoy sharing recipes and other miscellaneous things with you. Over the years I’ve started to share more non-recipe posts with you for a couple of reasons. One, it’s getting harder to find recipes that are worth sharing because I have quite the variety. Also, when I find a blogger I really like, I love to to know all the facets about them. Regardless of whether her specialty is food, fashion, or decor. I thought maybe you’d feel the same way.
I’ve always loved taking pictures but I never expected it to catapult into the love that I have for it today. Five years ago I was content with a point and click camera. (A very cheap and crappy one.) I never dreamed that I would invest in a Canon EOS 70D, which is one of the best things I’ve every bought. I think that my photography has improved and I hope it continues to get better. I’m always trying to find new and fun ways to take pictures, especially of food because I love taking pictures of delicious eats.
A lot of people ask me for advice about blogging. I don’t think there is one right way to go about it because everyone’s journey is different. However, I think the best tip that I can offer is for you is what my husband told me when I started. “Do you. If you love it, keep doing it. If you hate it stop doing it. It’s your thing and no one can tell you how to do it.” If you have specific questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me because I’d be happy to go into more details with you, but it’s become my mantra for this blog.
There have been times when I was sick of it, or had a lot of bad recipes or bad picture days in a row. Other times I had no inspiration or I felt guilty that I wasn’t sticking to my prescribed posting schedule. At the end of the day, my husband nailed it. You have to do it while you are enjoying it and if you treat it like a hobby, you’ll never let it make you feel bad about anything involving it. After all, hobbies are things you love to do. Note that I’m not suggesting it’s easy or that you should give up if it turns into a lot of work. Just don’t let it ruin your life and you’ll be okay.
I wracked my brain to try to think of a recipe to share with you to mark the special occasion. I thought maybe I’d share a crumb cake of some sort because I’m obsessed with anything that has crumbs. I have a lot of crumb cake (or cake like) recipes on the blog to prove that point. However, my husband said to me, “Those aren’t your thing. The chocolate chip banana bread is your thing because that’s one of the recipes that you’re known for.” The other recipes are the pasta fagioli soup (my most popular recipe of all time) and my husband’s skillet pizza (crazy popular, but not quite as much). Since I’ve shared a chocolate recipe of some sort on every blogiversary (unintentionally) I thought I’d take the chocolate chip banana bread recipe and and turn it into something equally wonderful.
I made banana bread doughnuts. (My husband keeps calling them “Anniversary Doughnuts.”) Have you ever made doughnuts before? I’m talking about the ones that you bake in a pan in the oven. They are super duper easy and if you can bake a cake or a muffin then you can bake a doughnut. It just takes a fancy shaped pan, but in truth, most cake doughnut recipes can be made in a muffin pan with only minor tweaks to how long you cook them. If you don’t have a doughnut pan, then I recommend treating yourself to one. I’ve had my doughnut pan for about five years and I still love it. Plus, it’s inexpensive which is a bonus.
I don’t own a fryer (which is probably a good thing because my waistline would hate me), so all of my doughnut recipes are baked. Baked doughnuts mean that they have a more cakey texture than the fried version. They’re also more healthy than the fried kinds. I’m not saying that these doughnuts are healthy, but they do contain bananas so that’s got to count from something. 😉
Some people use a piping bag to get the dough into each doughnut ring. I don’t do well with piping bags in general so I don’t use that method. (I think piping bags hate me, but I can’t figure out what I ever did to them.) I scoop four scoops of dough, using a small OXO cookie scoop into each doughnut well. Yup, I’m making my “cookie scoop” multi function. (Alton Brown would approve.) It looks like a flower after you’ve made the scoops.
Then I use a butter knife to spread it out evenly. Voila. I fill each doughnut well almost all the way to the top because I like my doughnuts thick. That results in a smaller whole in the middle of the doughnut but I don’t have any problems with that.
You can certainly eat these doughnuts as plain banana bread in a fun doughnut shape. They’ll be delicious. But why stop there? I believe I promised you a chocolate recipe today.
I topped these banana dreams with a rich chocolate glaze. Mmm chocolate. I sprinkled some finely chopped pecans and miniature chocolate chips on top of the glaze. Because why not? We’re celebrating today. It also doesn’t hurt that the toppings make the doughnuts look even prettier. Food bloggers are always looking for ways to make things look more appetizing, often by putting things on top of other things. Did it work?
By the way, if you’re wondering what the last four blogiversary recipes are, then here’s the list:
Coffee chocolate chip cookie bars, chocolate chip doughnuts, single serving whole wheat chocolate chip cookie, and chocolate cupcakes for two.
Mental note, maybe chocolate should just always be in my blogiversary recipes. 🙂
I won’t get mushy on you, but I absolutely must take a moment to thank each and every one of you. I wouldn’t be where I am today without you and I never take that for granted. I am grateful that you take time out of your day to check out my blog. And of course a special thank you to my husband, aka emotional support, tech support, and editor. I definitely would not have this blog if it was’t for his encouragement and constant help. Here’s to the next five years and beyond!!
Banana Bread Doughnuts Recipe
(Makes 17 doughnuts)
Ingredients for Banana Bread Doughnuts:
- 1/2 cup butter (equivalent to 1 stick of butter), melted
- 3/4 cup white sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 and 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (equivalent to 6.3 ounces)
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup Greek yogurt
- 2 over-ripe bananas, mashed
Ingredients for Chocolate Glaze Coating:
- 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 teaspoons light corn syrup
- 2 teaspoons water
Directions for Banana Bread Doughnuts:
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a doughnut pan and set it aside.
- In a large bowl, stir the melted butter and sugar together.
- Add the eggs and vanilla extract and mix well. Set the wet ingredients aside.
- In a separate large bowl, whisk the flour, baking soda, and salt together.
- Gradually mix the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until just combined.
- Add in the yogurt and the mashed bananas and mix until just combined.
- Spread evenly into a greased doughnut pan.
- Bake for 15 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the doughnuts comes out clean.
- Let the doughnuts cool in the pan for a few minutes and then remove them from the pan to a rack to cool completely.
Directions For Chocolate Glaze Coating:
- In a medium microwave safe bowl, add the semi-sweet chocolate chips, butter, corn syrup, and water.
- Melt the ingredients in 20 second increments, stirring after each time, until everything is completely melted and smooth.
- Dip the tops of each doughnut in the chocolate glaze.
Banana Bread recipe adapted from: All Recipes
Chocolate Glaze Coating recipe source: Sally’s Baking Addiction
Congrats to you Tina on five special blogging years! Thanks for sharing your recipes, fashion sense, home decor ideas and more with us. You do a fantastic job, keep up the good work! Here’s to the next five years and beyond. Keep it coming!
Thank you so much, Marie! Your kind words mean a lot to me. 🙂
Congrats, Tina! Those are quite impressive numbers you’ve racked up! I agree your photos are excellent – these donuts look delish and you may have just convinced me it’s finally time to buy the donut pan. My daughter keeps asking 🙂 Also just wanted to say I 100% agree about your advice that bloggers should ENJOY what they do – whatever that may be. I, like you, started as a hobby and have gone 7 years now and still love it. I’ve tried not to place too many rigid expectations on my blogging self, and have let it go where it will. I guess it’s working since were both still at it! Cheers to you and another 5 years!
Thank you so much, Julia! Wow 7 years … you are an inspiration. 🙂
Tina, thanks so much for the post.Really thank you! Keep writing.