Banana Nutella Crêpes (and a Homemade Strawberry Jam of Sorts)

As most of your favorite foods do, these crepes have a story behind them. It’s pretty easy to see why I love this particular dish—I mean, everyone knows that strawberries, bananas and Nutella are the three perfect, godly flavor combinations. And when you pair that creamy, hazelnut cocoa with warm, fresh-off-the-pan crepes and a bit of cream cheese icing drizzled over the top, it’s practically heaven.

Banana Nutella Crepes

It’s a simple yet wonderfully delectable breakfast (or dinner), but there’s more to it for me than just it’s delicious minimalism. I kind of hold these crepes dear to my heart because they evoke the memories of a tradition my mom and I started together.

Back when I was a teenager still living under the roof of mom and pop, every Wednesday night was “Crepe Night”. My dad taught business courses at a local college on Wednesday evenings, and he’s not really the breakfast-for-dinner type. My mom and I saw that as a glorious opportunity to make whatever we wanted, and our mutual love for crepes seemed to stick. It became this very special time for both of us. We knew that no matter what was going on that week or how little we may have gotten to really sit and talk, every Wednesday we would prepare and cook our breakfast-dinner together, sit down just the two of us, and hang out.

Those were wonderful memories and we still try to bring the tradition back to life sometimes when we see each other for dinner (side note: If you’re within driving distance of your parents/kids or anyone you love and haven’t seen in a while, go share a meal with them!).

Banana Nutella Crepes

So recently I went to the parental units’ home and we cooked up some crepes (Dad wanted in on it this time so it became a wonderful little family dinner affair). We also thought it’d be fun to make some homemade jam to go with it as well, but since it was last minute and we did not quite have all the tools to make true jam, we simplified it and made more of a strawberry sauce with agave syrup and chia seeds for good measure. I am planning to try my hand at canning fruits and making jam, so be expecting an entire post about that sometime in the future.

Banana Nutella Crepes & Strawberry Jam

Banana Nutella Crepes & Strawberry Jam

I think this is something we’ll do forever, no matter how much time in between. It’s kind of our thing, and I really cherish that with her. My mom is a beautiful person to be around.

Banana Nutella Crêpes

1 cup all-purpose flour

1 cup milk

4 large eggs

1 tbs sugar

In a medium-large mixing bowl, combine the milk, eggs and sugar and beat well. Then, simply add the flour and beat with a whisk until all clumps are gone.

After that, heat a large, shallow frying pan over medium heat with coconut oil or a nonstick spray. Before you add the batter, take the pan off of the heat. Crepes are meant to be thin, so add only about a 1/2 cup of batter to the pan and make sure the mixture distributes across the entire surface so you get an even crepe. If you need to add a bit more, go for it. Taking it off the heat for a moment allows the batter to spread out across the pan rather than start cooking right away in one spot. We don’t want clumpy crepes!

If you have a tool that allows you to distribute the batter evenly over the pan, then by all means use that. Then, just watch for one side to barely begin to get a golden hue to it. Crepes should be a little on the softer, more malleable side, so don’t let them get too crisp.

Once it looks thoroughly cooked, set it onto a plate and adorn it with all of the scrumptious fillings you can imagine. We, of course, love thinly sliced bananas, a generous amount of Nutella and a bit of whipped cream. We also put a bit of our “strawberry jam” in them along with fresh berries and it. was. wonderful.

Other Topping Suggestions: Toasted pecans or walnuts (crushed), cream cheese icing, caramel sauce, dark chocolate, blueberry coulis… Ahh the list could go on and on. And we’re just talking sweet crepe ideas–imagine how the world will open up when we explore savory options. ❤ 😍

Oatmeal Cream Pies (and the Allure of Summer & Childhood)

June felt like such a crazy month, and July is going to be even busier. I can’t believe how quickly the months are flying by. The summer has this sort of allure where anything and everything somehow feels more exciting. More possible. Like life was previous at a standstill and summer was that awakening change. Summer brings about adventure–it’s as if the world is giving you permission to explore it with more curiosity and vigor than ever before (you always had that permission, but for some reason, during the summer, it’s bigger. It’s louder).

Well anyways, I think because of the mysterious aura of summer, it’s easier to lose track of time as well. I had kind of worried in the past that when I was no longer a student, summer would not feel the same. There would be no more “summer vacation.” There would be no more amazing adventures and days spent laughing and playing in the sun. But I have to say, summer feels just as wonderful as it always has.

This past weekend in particular, it really hit me though the importance of making time for the things you love and the things that truly reenergize you. While being out and about seeing people and doing things constantly is exciting and fulfilling, it’s also draining for an introvert like me. Baking, of course, is my respite.

Homemade Oatmeal Cream Pies

This weekend, as I sat in my bed, unrelentingly exhausted, all I could think that I wanted to do was light a few candles, maybe put on a little piano music and bake something delicious. That something delicious that captured my heart ended up being oatmeal cream pies. Aren’t they just pure perfection? Oatmeal cream pies manage to elicit both the nostalgia of childhood and the joy of the present moment as you bite into these soft, chewy cookies, filled with that fluffy, vanilla buttercream center.

As I enjoy one right now, I’m reminded of school field trips and sports team parties. I’m reaching back into my childhood and setting a giant plate right in front of 23-year-old me.

Homemade Oatmeal Cream Pies

Granted, homemade oatmeal cream pies are wayyy better than the “Little Debbie” packaged ones could ever dream of being. Get out of the way processed nonsense–homemade is where it’s at. This recipe comes from mybakingaddiction.com.💛

Oatmeal Cream Pies 

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp salt

3 cups rolled oats

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened

3/4 cup brown sugar

1/3 cup sugar

2 eggs

1 tsp pure vanilla extract

For the Vanilla Buttercream

3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened (don’t melt)

2 1/2 cups powdered sugar

1 tsp pure vanilla extract

1/2 tbs milk (optional, depending on how thick you’d like your frosting to be)

Preheat the oven to 350º F and grease a cookie sheet.

In a large mixing bowl, cream the sugars and butter until light and fluffy. Add the eggs and vanilla and beat just until combined.

In a separate bowl, stir together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. Little by little, fold the dry mixture into the butter mixture until everything is uniform. Add the oats in one cup at a time and stir until combined.

I found that using about a tbs of dough for each cookie was a good size. Roll them into balls and pat down just slightly. Bake the cookies for 11-12 minutes or until they start to turn a nice golden brown along the sides.

While the cookies are baking, we can get started on the buttercream frosting. Beat together the butter, powdered sugar and vanilla until you get a fluffy, whipped texture without any clumps. If you’d like the cream to be a little thinner, add 1/2 tbs of milk at a time.

Once the cookies have finished baking, transfer them to a cooling rack and wait about 15 minutes. Then, simply sandwich a big dollop of frosting between two cookies and enjoy! Try not to eat a million at once (I totally did). A classic suggestion, but these go splendidly with a big glass of milk. 💛

Homemade Oatmeal Cream Pies