SMiLes by Meg

Banana, Date and Walnut Tin Can Cake

This is a recipe I’ve been excited to make since getting the Sweet by Ottolenghi cookbook. I started saving tin cans as soon as I saw it, and finally had an extra banana and some time to give it a go. And I’m so glad I did – this is like banana bread but better. There’s banana. There are walnuts. AND THERE ARE DATES. Which I love, and think make all things better. So this one starts by briefly toasting the walnuts. Spread them out on a baking sheet and bake at 350°F for 5 minutes. Set aside to cool.

Chocolate Zucchini Bread

Calling this a “bread” feels kind of like lying. Sure, the base of this is a zucchini bread, and there is definitely a LOT of zucchini. Which makes you feel like it’s healthy. But then it’s moist, full of chocolate chips, and seems like a better pair for ice cream than coffee. Which makes you feel like it can’t possibly be healthy. However, I’m not one to make such decisions for you, so if you want to call it a vegetable bread, and therefore basically a salad, I’m not going to stop you. If you want to call it more

Irish Soda Bread Scones

Happy St. Patrick’s Day! Boston is full of people in green, especially in the part of town I live in, so it’s hard to forget. Also, every year I convince myself that Irish Soda Bread is “bread” and therefore not a sweet, so I’ve consumed quite a bit of that in the last couple of days. Now, I’ve made Irish Soda Bread on the blog before. It was my mom’s recipe, and I made it as a surprise for her. Turns out, my mom is rather single-minded when it comes to soda bread: it’s Stop & Shop bakery brand or

Nutella Babka

So I didn’t actually have time to make babka this weekend. I had errands to run. And work to do. And laundry to fold. But I really wanted to make this babka. It’s so pretty! And full of Nutella! And this Tuesday is Fat Tuesday, so I needed something good to treat myself before my yearly no-sweets-for-Lent challenge. Plus, Cloudy Kitchen, who has an amazing instagram, made it look easy. So I decided to go for it. When I told my mom I was making Nutella Babka, she balked. “You make too many Nutella things,” she accused. First of all,

Mini Pumpkin Bread

Last week, I mentioned that I had made some pumpkin bread. Now that I’m back on the East Coast, where people are as obsessed with pumpkin as I am (I currently have a pumpkin spice candle lit next to my computer), it felt like a good time to post it! Pretty early in the SMiLes by Meg catalog I made a chocolate chip pumpkin bread, but I realized I hadn’t posted any just plain, high quality, pumpkin bread. I wanted a recipe that made its own spice mix, actually looked orange, and had some kind of crunchy topping. More importantly,

Sourdough Cinnamon Rolls

I have a confession to make: my sourdough starter experiment failed. For three days, it looked perfect – everything was bubbling away just like it should. And then I had to fiddle. The book I bought here, Alaska Sourdough, didn’t really give much guidance when it came to sourdough starter upkeep. I like having directions to follow, and don’t do well with “just let it be for 2 weeks.” I’m the kind of person that has to constantly push around anything I’m cooking on a stovetop. So I felt the need to at least give it a stir once a

Flourless Coconut Cake

This post is going to be a buzzer-beater. I made it yesterday, finally at home in Duxbury enjoying summer vacation, and then spent today moving into a new apartment with my mom’s help. There is nothing like moving into a new place – full of fresh starts and exciting decorating opportunities. And, of course, a new kitchen! But in all my excitement, I definitely was a bit rushed in baking this last night. And maybe had a pretty catastrophic baking fail. I do not blame the recipe – this one was all me. So if you do try this post,

Walnut Halvah Cake

Fun fact for my Instagram followers (@smilesbymeg): while 76 of you took the time to watch my Instagram story in which I made this cake, only 24 of you could bring yourselves to like the post itself. I’m not really sure what that says about my respective video/photo editing abilities, but I think it means I have to work on my food photography. Also, despite now having posted 7 different Ottolenghi recipes, I still haven’t been selected in his #IBakedOttolenghi compilations. Further proof that my food photography needs work. Looks like I have my project for post-bar-exam life!

Cheddar Scones

I just got back from New Haven, where, after spending last week celebrating my graduation from law school, I spent this weekend celebrating at my five year reunion from college. And next week I get to celebrate my birthday! So many reasons to make baked goods, so little time. If you’ve been reading this blog for any amount of time, you’ll know that my favorite cake of all time is Claire’s Lithuanian Coffee Cake with extra buttercream frosting, which is something you can order at Claire’s Cornercopia, a New Haven bakery. But since I’ve made that before, I decided to

Zucchini Walnut Bread

My last recipe from my Cambridge apartment! And, unfortunately, it’s going to be a short post because I’m very much still in the middle of packing. When I was picking this recipe, I was looking for a quick bread, mostly because it was graduation week and I didn’t want to be spending a ton of time on it. And I needed breakfast food that would last awhile. So I looked back through the breads I had made in the past, and was surprised to find that I had only made zucchini bread once, a long time ago, with chocolate chips