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Anna N

Meeting-friendly snacks to bake

281 posts in this topic

Help me choose meeting-friendly snacks to bake

I have repeated ad nauseum that I do not consider myself a baker. I love to make bread but cookies, bars, quick breads, coffee cakes and their ilk are just not my forte. When I'm successful I ascribe it to magic not skill.

My son-in-law has asked if, every two to three weeks, I could provide him with a snack to take to his sales meeting.

I was tempted to decline but decided that a challenge might be fun.

I have loads of cook books including baking books, a reasonable batterie of cake/muffin pans and baking sheets. I have a Bosch compact mixer and a reliable oven.

He requested that the snacks be:

Meeting-friendly

Non-gooey

Nut-free

Not too crumbly

Not require refrigeration

Be easily transportable

Enough for 6-8 people

My specs are:

Doable by a novice

Not requiring exotic and expensive ingredients (I have a very well-stocked pantry)

Could tolerate being made a day or two ahead

What say you, bakers?

.


Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Never call a stomach a tummy without good reason.” William Strunk Jr., The Elements of Style

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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Well for a non-baker (which you're NOT, how can you say that when you're a bread baker??), I'd say bars might be the easiest to make. But many of them tend to be gooey or crumbly by nature (especially the layered ones). Brownies and blondies are dead simple to make and you can play around with plain ones or add different inclusions (chocolate chips, coconut, etc).

 

I think cookies will be the most forgiving. If you over- or under-bake them, they'll still be edible (just crunchier or chewier). They're individually portioned already. And there's a never-ending variety to choose from. The more you bake, the fancier you can get – with sandwich cookies and decorated roll-out cookies (if you want to spend the time).


I'm gonna go bake something…

wanna come with?

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I think chocolate chip cookie variants really touch home and give most/many people a smile.

 

Quick breads sliced so they are 2 to 3 bite friendly also come to mind - I love a pumpkin bread in a loaf pan and have served it in that sort of setting with the slices in 4's. Goes great with coffee. Banana bread is in the  same vein but I have found more and more folks that recoil from nanas

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I have a buttermilk quick bread recipe that is like the Fine Cooking Bakeshop muffins - you mix and match the add ins to suit what ever you have in your pantry or need to get rid of.  Making something like that every 4th or 5th time with different add ins - they wouldn't even realize it was the same recipe!

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Maida Heatter's California Fruit Bars are an easy bar to make; you mix brown sugar and egg over heat until the sugar melts, add flour and plumped dried fruit (the original calls for fruit and nuts, and there's a variation with just pecans) and bake in a foil lined pan.  It's basically a blondie with yummy fruit. I like it best with apricots and it was always a hit when I brought it to our Thursday lunch seminars.  The recipe is probably available online but it's in her Book of Great American Desserts

 

I think variations of cookies would be excellent.  Going back to the book above, the Chocolate Gobs are divine.  As are the Raspberry Brownies.

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Kerry's recipe sounds perfect for what you want, as well as the other suggestions! I was just going to say that there are lots of lemon and orange loaf recipes and they tend to freeze very well so you can double recipes and so forth. You can bake some cookies and take a loaf out of the freezer if you want to offer variety for one meeting. You can add things like cranberries or dried fruit. 

 

I like mini-muffins because regular muffins are just too big at times. And muffins don't have to be sweet, they can be savory. Ham & cheese, corn or cornbread muffins with peppers (not necessarily hot peppers!), sun-dried tomatoes, etc.

 

I used to make peanut butter and banana muffins - I think I started with a version of a peanut butter muffin and substituted banana for some of the oil.

 

I'm not really giving anything special here, I'm afraid. (I was going to mention scones as well.) 


Edited by FauxPas (log)

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I can recommend these financiers, 4 ingredients, dead easy and very tasty (can be made in regular muffin pan as well, just adjust the baking time):

http://bakingattiffanys.com/2013/07/22/bouchon-bakerys-traditional-financiers/

I like scones as well, they can be made with a nice cheddar and there you have some savoury stuff for those without a sweet tooth.

Sadly won't pass the nut free.  Excellent idea on the cheddar scones - and I know Anna has a fabulous Cheddar Muffin recipe too.

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Sadly won't pass the nut free.

Ooops. That's what reading diagonally will do to ya. :-p

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I must be the only meeting-goer because I wAnt to know: what time are these meetings? I'd make something different for morning vs afternoon meetings

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I must be the only meeting-goer because I wAnt to know: what time are these meetings? I'd make something different for morning vs afternoon meetings

 

Really great point. 


I'm gonna go bake something…

wanna come with?

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Well, not baked, but how about fudge, or some other candy? The not-too-crumbly thing, combined with the other requirements may make finding suitable baked options a bit tricky.


Michaela, aka "Mjx"
Manager, eG Forums
mscioscia@egstaff.org

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I suggest bumbles, which is my term for small, bite-sized biscuits.  Easy to make, easy to store and easy to reheat.  Can be as simple or complex as you wish.  Complex meaning incorporating herbs, bacon, cheese, etc. 

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I think chocolate chip cookie variants really touch home and give most/many people a smile.

 

Quick breads sliced so they are 2 to 3 bite friendly also come to mind - I love a pumpkin bread in a loaf pan and have served it in that sort of setting with the slices in 4's. Goes great with coffee. Banana bread is in the  same vein but I have found more and more folks that recoil from nanas

Chocolate chip cookies will surely make it. Banana bread not so much. My son-in-law would likely eat it before he reached the office.


Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Never call a stomach a tummy without good reason.” William Strunk Jr., The Elements of Style

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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I have a buttermilk quick bread recipe that is like the Fine Cooking Bakeshop muffins - you mix and match the add ins to suit what ever you have in your pantry or need to get rid of.  Making something like that every 4th or 5th time with different add ins - they wouldn't even realize it was the same recipe!

Must get you to send me this, please.

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Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Never call a stomach a tummy without good reason.” William Strunk Jr., The Elements of Style

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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Maida Heatter's California Fruit Bars are an easy bar to make; you mix brown sugar and egg over heat until the sugar melts, add flour and plumped dried fruit (the original calls for fruit and nuts, and there's a variation with just pecans) and bake in a foil lined pan.  It's basically a blondie with yummy fruit. I like it best with apricots and it was always a hit when I brought it to our Thursday lunch seminars.  The recipe is probably available online but it's in her Book of Great American Desserts

 

I think variations of cookies would be excellent.  Going back to the book above, the Chocolate Gobs are divine.  As are the Raspberry Brownies.

Thanks. Will try to track down these recipes.


Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Never call a stomach a tummy without good reason.” William Strunk Jr., The Elements of Style

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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I must be the only meeting-goer because I wAnt to know: what time are these meetings? I'd make something different for morning vs afternoon meetings

Sorry. Morning meetings.


Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Never call a stomach a tummy without good reason.” William Strunk Jr., The Elements of Style

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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Kerry's recipe sounds perfect for what you want, as well as the other suggestions! I was just going to say that there are lots of lemon and orange loaf recipes and they tend to freeze very well so you can double recipes and so forth. You can bake some cookies and take a loaf out of the freezer if you want to offer variety for one meeting. You can add things like cranberries or dried fruit. 

 

I like mini-muffins because regular muffins are just too big at times. And muffins don't have to be sweet, they can be savory. Ham & cheese, corn or cornbread muffins with peppers (not necessarily hot peppers!), sun-dried tomatoes, etc.

 

I used to make peanut butter and banana muffins - I think I started with a version of a peanut butter muffin and substituted banana for some of the oil.

 

I'm not really giving anything special here, I'm afraid. (I was going to mention scones as well.)

Good points about mini muffins. Thank you.


Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Never call a stomach a tummy without good reason.” William Strunk Jr., The Elements of Style

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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http://smittenkitchen.com/blog/2009/02/thick-chewy-oatmeal-raisin-cookies/

 

This recipe NEVER fails.  I've doubled it and tripled it.  Cookies are perfect every time.

Thanks, Shelby. Added to my list.

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Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Never call a stomach a tummy without good reason.” William Strunk Jr., The Elements of Style

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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Sadly won't pass the nut free.  Excellent idea on the cheddar scones - and I know Anna has a fabulous Cheddar Muffin recipe too.

How could I have forgotten the cheddar muffins.


Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Never call a stomach a tummy without good reason.” William Strunk Jr., The Elements of Style

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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Well, not baked, but how about fudge, or some other candy? The not-too-crumbly thing, combined with the other requirements may make finding suitable baked options a bit tricky.

Thanks, Michaela. Tried to make fudge many times in my younger days and it was always a failure. Not sure I'd attempt it again. Maybe I'll get lessons from Kerry when we head north this summer.


Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Never call a stomach a tummy without good reason.” William Strunk Jr., The Elements of Style

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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I suggest bumbles, which is my term for small, bite-sized biscuits.  Easy to make, easy to store and easy to reheat.  Can be as simple or complex as you wish.  Complex meaning incorporating herbs, bacon, cheese, etc.

Intriguing. Can you point me to a recipe?


Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Never call a stomach a tummy without good reason.” William Strunk Jr., The Elements of Style

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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Biscotti might be good for this. They're easy to put together and last forever; or you could bake the loaf and then freeze it before slicing for the second baking. I tend to like biscotti with nuts, but there are many nut-free biscotti recipes, or just leave them out, biscotti are very forgiving.

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