banana whoopie

are you lonesome tonight? admit it. you’re a hunk of burnin love. you want to put on a pair of blue suede shoes and make your way to the end of lonely street at heartbreak hotel. you ain’t nothing but a hound dog, cryin’ all the time.¬†alright… a little less conversation, a little more action.

remember earlier this week when i said that i had majorly ripe bananas? well, tomorrow is garbage day so it was put out or get out for those guys. i had looked through a bunch of recipes over the weekend and although i was skeptical of how they sounded and the reviews they got, i decided to take a risk and make banana whoopie pies with peanut butter filling– and since these reminded me of elvis’ favorite sandwich of bananas, peanut butter, and honey, i went with honey roasted peanut butter. mind you, i took the cookie recipe that sounded better, and paired it with the filling recipe that sounded better, in hopes of this being more successful.

banana whoopie 5

i am not a huge elvis fan, but i grew up with an aunt who was, and of course he has some great music! my mom and step-father live down in nashville, so on one of my visits down there, my mother, her friend, me, and my friend tracey took a drive to memphis to see graceland, beale street, sun records, and lest we not forget the peabody ducks (yes, the ones who take the elevator every day and walk down a red carpet to the fountain). i must say, it was a fun experience! we stood on the “x” where johnny cash and elvis played while recording, saw the ducks, walked down a sketchy road from the peabody to sun records (which my mother was not exactly happy about–oops), walked down and had lunch on beale street, and of course walked the full grounds of graceland. even though i should have been singing elvis songs, i couldn’t help but have “walking in memphis” stuck in my head… especially as i stood in the jungle room picturing a pretty lil’ thing waiting for the king. the grounds were beautiful, and it was really interesting to learn about and actually see so many aspects of his life– there was so much more than just music!

peabody

sun records

sun records2graceland1

i wasn’t exactly all shook up over these, but that’s all right now, that’s all right. the cookie/cake part came out kinda tasting like a typical banana cake, which was pretty good, not great, but i would consider making them again. when i opened the jar of honey roasted peanut butter i was in heaven. incase you haven’t noticed yet, i absolutely LOVE peanut butter. maybe this became apparent to you when i spoke about eating a big bowl of rice krispies with peanut butter instead of milk. but, there’s something you most likely don’t know…something that i should not be proud of, but in a strange way i kinda am. when i was about 12 i went to a 4-H conference and at one of the lectures they were giving out door prizes. they pulled my friend’s ticket number but she didn’t want to go up there…since i wasn’t afraid of going up on stage i went and claimed the 8lb jar of peanut butter (a size which i never knew existed). THEN they called my ticket number. i don’t recall if she went up to claim it or someone else went up, but i do remember that i ended up bringing home 16lbs of peanut butter. i also remember eating all 16 pounds of peanut butter that summer. thank goodness for sports and a high metabolism! i put it on everything. no, really, everything. if there is anything at all that you are curious about how it tastes with peanut butter, just ask me, i’ve had it. i also resorted to eating quite a bit of it by the spoonful, as you might imagine. instead of turning me off to the stuff, i think it just increased my love. in college i even continued to eat some of the weird combos i had discovered, such as peanut butter on egg rolls.

now that you are armed with this knowledge, you will understand my disappointment much better. i whipped up the icing, tasted a bit off the spoon (it was also good) and piped it onto the cookies and my eyes grew large, i thought back to all of those peanut butter and banana sandwiches i have enjoyed every so muchly, i swiveled my hips a few times, took a bite, and got terribly confused. i was not sure what to make of what was in my mouth. i chewed and swallowed, then contemplated some more. although i love the combination of peanut butter and bananas, i apparently do not care much for the combination of banana cookies, honey roasted peanut butter, and cream cheese. i have already decided that if i make these again, i will use a fluffernutter filling instead, and they shall be glorious!

if you find yourself in tennessee and you still have time after seeing memphis and nashville, take a drive to the tn/ga border and visit rock city/lookout mountain. you will not regret this. not only is it a beautiful park, not only do they sell ridiculously good fudge (i know fudge, and this was some good stuff! i think i ate about half a pound before we got home), but from the top you can see seven states, which was really amazing. i looked through the viewfinder and found a beautiful farm house that i would love to live in… i still daydream about this home, even though i don’t even know what state it is in. and if you still have time after that, check out ruby falls in chatanooga, an underground waterfall. it was pretty cool and i felt pretty bad@ss going down an elevator 1120 feet below ground.

lookout mountainlookout mtn 2lookout mtn 3

Recipe:

Cookies from Martha Stewart

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup mashed banana (from 1 large ripe banana)
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 4 ounces (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup packed light-brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment. Sift flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt into a bowl. Combine banana and sour cream in another bowl.
  2. Beat butter and granulated and brown sugars with a mixer on medium-high speed, until pale and creamy, about 3 minutes. Add egg and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, beating until incorporated. Add banana mixture in 2 additions, alternating with flour mixture.
  3. Transfer batter to a pastry bag fitted with a 1/4-inch plain tip. Pipe batter into 1 1/4-inch rounds on baking sheets, spacing rounds 1 1/2 inches apart.
  4. Bake until edges are golden, about 12 minutes. Slide parchment, with cookies, onto wire racks. Let cool. (Unfilled cookies can be stored for up to 1 day.)

Filling from Abby Sweets

16 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 cup confectioner’s sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter

In a medium bowl, use and electric mixer to beat cream cheese until fluffy. Add sugar, vanilla and peanut butter and mix until combined. Spoon mixture into a pastry bag with the end cut off.

Pipe filling onto the flat side of half of the cakes and then top with the other half of the cakes

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