You Asked … Mary Beth Answers Your Questions (Part 2)

We’re back for more of your questions! I love these video blogs because I have so much fun reading your questions and hearing your feedback. I hope you enjoy watching as much as I did filming. 

We couldn’t get to all of the questions, but we’ll definitely be back for more of these in the future, so keep you eyes on my Instagram account … I’ll post a call for questions there. 

As always, thanks for your continued support!!

Celebrating 30 years with Banana Cake

My son, Danny, has never liked sweets, including cake (how did that happen?). So this past weekend, as we celebrated his 30th birthday, I made this banana cake recipe.

I make this in round cake pans, and this year I doubled the recipe and did four layers, with frosting and sliced bananas in between each layer. Then, I chopped walnuts and, using my hands, I covered the side of the cake.

Weddings, Rosie Memories and Sharing Recipes

I was at a wedding last week, sitting next to a nice couple who I had never met. So to make introductory conversation, I asked the woman if they have kids (often a good place for me to find common ground) and the flood gates opened. We talked all about her FOUR teenagers and my now adult children. I could relate to so many tales she shared about their successes and struggles. 

It is funny how life works, or maybe it’s MY brain … but now, as I look back on those years, I have these rosie memories and think it was a breeze. Haha, I know that is not exactly the reality, but it seems to be a nice way to remember it.  And what I have found to be true is that you realize, in hindsight, that many of the things we angst over as parents were really not that big a deal. 

A Family Favorite Recipe: Zucchini & Sausage Penne Pasta

For my daughter’s recent birthday, I asked her what she’d like me to cook and she immediately replied that she wanted the Zucchini & Sausage Penne Pasta that I’ve made for years. It’s a long-time family favorite that never seems to get old and is always a dinner party pleaser. And best of all, it’s an easy and relatively quick meal to prepare! 

A Collection of Recipes: From Your Kitchen to Mine

Earlier this week I celebrated my birthday, and thanks to so many of you, it really was the best day! One of the sweetest presents I got this year was a fantastic collection of recipes, “From Our Kitchens to Yours,” shared by some of my fans.

Okay, for starters, that this group of fans would come together, from places all over the world, to put this together warms my heart. But my favorite part is that each recipe is accompanied by a sweet little story that gives me a glimpse into the lives, heritage and backgrounds of each of the ladies who contributed.

One thing I have always struggled with on this acting life journey is that I don’t get the opportunity to really hear much from the wonderful people who support us. The events are great, but it’s especially hard – knowing people have waited patiently in line to meet us – when we only get to spend a couple of minutes with each person. It all goes too fast, which is why I must confess to not knowing a lot of your names … or at least I’m not always able to put names and faces together.  So please forgive me on that …

I love that PLANK has given me the opportunity to learn more about many of you, and I love the stories that you share here. Over the past two years, so many of you have referenced things you do for certain occasions, or things your grandma tried to teach you … sharing the traditions that were passed down to you. We sometimes forget to do that and it really is so special. It always reminds me of the daily things my grandma passed down to me …
 

A Few of Grandma’s Tips

  1. Vacuum slowly. 
  2. Use steam when ironing.
  3. For scrambled eggs, put the cracked, unbeaten eggs all in the pan, stir around the yoks until the end and then chop them up.
  4. To wash your silver, place crinkled foil in the bottom of the sink. Then disolve Spick & Span in hot water and let siver sit in it for a while. (I’ve never tried it, but I’ve never forgotten it … and I’ll take her word for it)
Anyway, thanks to everyone who contributed for taking the time to share your recipes, stories and pieces of your lives with me. And a huge thanks to Jennifer Brock and Nikki Stauffer, who pulled all of this together. I have been looking through the recipes and there are so many I want to try. One, in particular, that caught my attention was the recipe for Spinach Banana Muffins … I can’t wait to try these, Nikki!
 
 
 
 
 
And speaking of muffins and passing things down … I am so happy that my daughter, Katie, has started showing a real interest in cooking and baking. We share recipes often now, and she recently sent me a super easy, great recipe for healthy banana muffins that only have five ingredients.
 
So, I thought I’d share both muffins recipes with you all — one from your kitchen, and one from mine (sort of). Click here for Katie’s recipe
 
Spinach Banana Muffins

Spinach Banana Muffins

Ingredients

  • 2 cups white wheat flour
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 3/4 cup non-dairy milk
  • 1 bag of fresh spinach (5 oz.)
  • 1 small banana
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil

Instructions

  1. Preheat over to 350 degrees
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together all dry ingredients
  3. In a blender, combine the non-dairy milk, spinach, banana and vanilla extract. Blend until entirely smooth
  4. Place the coconut oil in a bowl or mug and microwave on high until entirely melted
  5. Pour the green smoothie mixture and melted coconut oil into the dry ingredients. Mix/fold together until a batter forms.
  6. Fill each cup of a well-greased muffin tin 3/4 full and bake for about 20 - 25 minutes, or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean.
http://www.plankblog.com/cooking/3332/
 

30 Plus Some & I’m Feeling Great!

In October, I shared with you my quest to get back on the health wagon with the Whole30. Since then, several of you have asked about my experience, so I thought I’d share a little update.

As I said in my original post, I’ve tried so many diets over the years that I’ve lost count. I seem to be perpetually in search of something that will help me stabilize my weight. And for that last 5-10 years, I’ve been in a pretty consistent cycle – I’d be really good during the week and drop a few pounds, only to gain them back over the weekend. Sound familiar?