March is Bake and Take Month, an annual observance sponsored by the Kansas Wheat Commission and the Home Baking Association. It's a great way to show someone you care about them, or appreciate them, by baking something homemade and delivering it to their doorstep. Children can learn to show appreciation for a neighbor, a teacher, or someone special by baking a simple batch of muffins or quick bread to share. It's an opportunity for families and service groups to prepare a treat to deliver to friends, the elderly, and shut-ins. The visit when the baked goods are delivered is one of the most enjoyable aspects of the activity.
Bake and Take Day began in 1970 as a community service project of the Kansas Wheathearts in Sumner County. The Kansas Wheathearts, an auxiliary organization of the Kansas Association of Wheat Growers, set out to share baked goods with family members, friends, neighbors and those in need, generating goodwill in the community. The idea of sharing a favorite recipe with someone special became so successful that the Kansas Wheathearts created a national Bake and Take Day celebration in 1973. And the tradition continues.
Participants who share their stories of the Bake and Take experience with the Kansas Wheat Commission by April 16 can be entered into a random drawing. A Home Baking Association "Gift Basket," plus a "Baking with Friends" cookbook by Kansas authors Charlene Patton and Sharon Davis will be given away. The Kansas Wheat Commission also will give away its "Kansas Gold" book, a 50-year history of the Kansas Wheat Commission complete with historical recipes.
To be eligible for the "book bundle" prize pack, participants should visit www.kansaswheat.org. Under the "Consumers" section, click on Bake and Take Month for a brochure and entry form. For a hard copy of the entry form, stop by the Bourbon County Extension office on first floor of the courthouse.
One of my favorite recipes to share with others is a healthy whole wheat quick bread recipe which was used in one of our Extension-sponsored summer youth cooking classes a few years ago. It's simple to make, uses whole grain flour, and is delicious toasted.
Whole Wheat Quick Bread Recipe
* 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
* 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
* 1 teaspoon salt
* 1 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
3 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons margarine or butter, melted
3/4 cup pecans, toasted
2 tablespoons rolled oats
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Combine whole wheat flour, all-purpose flour, salt and baking soda.
Combine buttermilk, egg, honey, and margarine; add to dry ingredients, stirring just until blended. Stir in pecans and spread batter in a well-greased 9 x 5 x 3 inch loaf pan. Sprinkle with oats.
Bake 45 minutes or until toothpick tests done. Cool in pan on a wire rack 20 minutes. Remove from pan and cool completely on wire rack. Makes 12 servings.
Nutrition Facts per serving: 210 calories; 8 grams fat; 1 gram saturated fat; 360 mg sodium; 31 grams total carbohydrate; 3 grams dietary fiber.
Editor's Note: Ann Ludlum is a K-State Research and Extension family and consumer sciences and 4-H extension agent assigned to Bourbon County. She may be reached at (620) 223-3720 or firstname.lastname@example.org.