The nerve of those Whos. Inviting me down there – and on such short notice. Even if I wanted to go my schedule wouldn’t allow it. Four o’clock, wallow in self pity; 4:30, stare into the abyss; 5:00, solve world hunger, tell no one. 5:30, jazzercize. 6:30, dinner with me. I can’t cancel that again. 7:00, wrestle with my self-loathing; I’m booked. Of course, if I bump the loathing to 9 I could still be done in time to lay in bed, stare at the ceiling and slip slowly into madness. But what would I wear?

– The Grinch, from How The Grinch Stole Christmas

Even the Grinch feels the pressure around Christmas time! Between shopping, decorating, parties and getting ready for those parties – it just seems that there isn’t a moment to spare. And, if you are trying to figure out what to feed your out of town guests, then it just gets worse.

We were thrilled to hear from some of our readers last week, thanking us for the holiday menu. Catherine wrote us an e-mail nearly the minute we sent out last week’s menu saying: “Wonderful, I have a daughter, son in law and two grandchildren arriving from California and son and daughter in law joining us for an early Christmas. Now I know what I can do for a brunch before they go over to Vancouver for Christmas.”

We probably won’t get all of the recipes posted on the blog, but you can always sign up for our weekly brunch recipe by e-mail to make sure you get them all!

Holiday Brunch Recipe Almond Berry Banana Bread

Preparation Time: 20 minutes
Cooking Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings: Makes 1 large loaf

What you need:Almond Berry Banana Bread Ingredients

* 1/4 cup butter, softened
* 1/2 cup granulated sugar
* 1 egg
* 1 tsp vanilla
* 1 cup mashed rope bananas (3 medium bananas)
* 1/2 cup low fat french vanilla yogurt
* 1 3/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
* 1 tsp baking powder
* 1 tsp baking soda
* 1/2 tsp salt
* 3/4 cup dried cranberries
* 1/2 cup slivered almonds

What you do:

1. Grease your large loaf pan or line it with wax paper.
2. Preheat oven to 350oF.
3. In a large bowl, beat butter and sugar together until light and fluffy.
4. Beat in the egg, vanilla, bananas and yogurt until it’s all well blended.Mixing Ingredients
5. Add flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. With a spoon, stir it all together just until blended.
6. Stir in cranberries and almonds.Mix in the cranberries and almonds
7. Scrape batter into the loaf pan.Banana Bread ready for baking

8. Bake for 1 hour. Check the center with a toothpick. If it’s still wet, cook for another 10 minutes. Toothpick inserted into center should come out dry.

A quick peak in the oven to see if it's ready... not quite so back in it goes

A quick peak in the oven to see if it's ready... not quite so back in it goes

9. Turn upside down onto a cooling rack. Let sit for 10 minutes before cutting.

It helps to have a clean up crew on hand… when you slice the bread it’s a bit crumbly. Thankfully my helpful dog Bram was there to clean the floors of any crumbs.


Great Holiday Gifts and Stocking Stuffers:

LUSH Bath bombs