In the Kitchen With SI Swimsuit: Traybakes, Cakes and Pesto

Spice up your life and cooking repertoire by trying out these recipes from SI Swimsuit models.

This quarantine has brought out the Julia Child in all of us. From peanut butter cookies to sourdough bread, from soup to caramelized shallot pasta, everyone seems to be cooking and baking all day. For many in New York City, this means cleaning out kitchen storage spaces (aka the oven) to make way for the newest breakfast casserole or that banana bread that seems to be on everybody's Instagram story. Many SI Swimsuit models love to cook and we’ve been getting some amazing inspiration from their creations in this recurring column.

This week in the kitchen, Gigi Hadid made a peanut butter and jelly tray bake; Kelsey Merritt showed off a twist on the now overdone banana bread with her coconut banana cake; and Kate Bock whipped up the perfect vegan pesto for all your pizza, sandwich, and pasta needs. Here’s the roundup of our favorite SI Swimsuit model recipes of the week.

Gigi Hadid’s Peanut Butter and Jelly Tray Bake: Is it possible for anything with peanut butter and jelly to taste bad? I didn't think so. Think of this as the grown-up version of your favorite childhood meal. Use the jam of your choice or even make your own if you’re feeling adventurous. Gigi’s tray bake looked incredible and as long as you follow the same recipe, you will have the same results. Think a buttery, fluffy pancake in the shape of a brownie.

Photo courtesy of BBC

Photo courtesy of BBC

Kelsey Merritt’s Coconut Banana Cake With Chocolate Fudge Frosting: If you’re sick of looking at banana bread and eating banana bread, switch it up with this recipe by Half Baked Harvest. If you follow Kelsey on Instagram, then you saw the evolution of this cake from just a bowl of flour to a delicious creation topped with an incredible layer of chocolate fudge frosting. This may be my new go-to recipe for all the bananas that we can’t seem to eat fast enough.

Photo courtesy of Half Baked Harvest

Photo courtesy of Half Baked Harvest

Kate Bock’s Vegan Pesto: The queen of a healthy quarantine lifestyle is back at it again with her vegan pesto. Pesto is the perfect accessory to any meal -- you can spread it on a cauliflower crust pizza like Kate does, or use it on a burger or as a sauce for your pasta. The possibilities are endless. Kate's recipe calls for a cup of fresh basil, three cloves of garlic, ¼ cup of water, 1 lemon juiced and zested, ½ cup pine nuts, ½ cup walnuts, ½ teaspoon sea salt and ½ cup olive oil. Throw all the ingredients (minus the olive oil) into a food processor or blender, give it a couple pulses, then slowly incorporate the oil until you have a perfect pesto.

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Alyssa Conroy