Are you sitting down? Chances are yes if you are reading this on a computer or laptop. If you are browsing my blog on your phone, then go ahead and take a seat. I have some pretty big news: I think I might have invented the new and improved peanut butter and jelly sandwich! Well, to be totally honest, I think anything is an improvement over peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. Please tell me I'm not the only one. I've never particularly enjoyed peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. In fact, when I was younger I always asked my dad to hold the jelly and just give me extra peanut butter. I was a pb fan from my earliest days. When I felt the need for an extra sugar rush, I always added a few scoops of marshmallow fluff to my peanut butter sandwiches. This treat, which is known as a fluffernutter sandwich, is still one of my favorite comfort foods.
Just in case you didn't already know this about me, I love quick breads. I'm a lover of carbs and a lover of quick and easy recipes; so, obviously, there is no surprise that I am a huge lover of quick breads. It's rare that I have enough time to wait on dough to rise, so I'm a fan of breads that can be mixed and baked in under an hour. I also prefer recipes that call for simple ingredients that I probably already have in my pantry. And what do ya know...this Graham Bread happens to fit all of these descriptions. Happy about this? I know I am.
Browning butter is very much the "in" thing for bloggers and foodies to do. Everywhere I look, I'm seeing blog posts and recipes that call for brown butter. It's hard to argue why it is such a popular ingredient because it makes cookies/cake/muffins/treats taste ten times better than regular butter does. Since I do consider myself a foodie, I figure it's only appropriate for me to jump on the bandwagon; what better way to start than with these muffins?
I keep hearing all of this news about global warming, but I must say that current DC weather conditions make it hard to believe. This past Wednesday was the first day of spring, and yet I saw snow flakes Thursday morning. There is something seriously wrong with this picture. Spring should mean warmer days with crisply cool evenings...not snow. As much as I love our environment and want to do everything to protect it (reduce, reuse, recycle!), I'm really a fan of warmer weather; so, a little global warming here and there can't hurt anyone, right?
Let's talk about beer for a second. Beer, a lot like wine, has been an acquired taste for me. When I first started drinking, I could not stand the smell or taste of beer. Even the lightest beers made me turn the other way and ask for every
high schooler's new drinker's go-to: Mike's Hard Lemonade. Now I think about Mike's Hard Lemonade and gag. Funny how things change. Even to this day, I'm still learning to appreciate different beers. I no longer squinch my nose when I try a new beer, but I still have a long way to go to fully appreciating beer, especially darker beers. Now you might be wondering why I decided to make Guinness brownies. If you are anything like me and haven't developed a taste for Guinness, don't worry; these brownies are amazing despite the strong, dark beer in them.
I love carbs: pasta, bread, rice, potatoes, corn, oats...the list goes on. If I had to pick a favorite carb, I'd have to go with freshly baked bread, with fresh pasta as a very close second. I seriously don't know how people not only accepted the low-carb fad diet that defined the 90's, but also somehow stuck with it. I might have lasted a few hours before caving. Meat and vegetables all day, every day? No, thank you.
We finally had a sunny, warm weekend in D.C., and I couldn't have been happier. I was finding any and every excuse to be outside and soak up some sunshine. Naturally, frozen yogurt was on that list of excuses; so was walking to Trader Joe's, strolling through Clarendon to window shop, and meeting friends at our standard spot to enjoy a few drinks on the patio. To say that I was ready to throw on my bathing suit and welcome spring with open arms is an understatement. Anddd here we are, two days later, experiencing dark, rainy, dreary weather. Guess I'll keep my bathing suit in my closet and beg the weather gods a little more this weekend.
When it comes to cooking dinners lately, I've been pretty lazy. It seems like I haven't been home at all the past couple of weeks. My time has been spent everywhere but in the kitchen; I've been looking at condos, traveling, playing in the snow...you get the idea. But just because I'm lacking the time to invest in cooking dinner doesn't mean that my dinner has to lack flavor.
Happy March (a few days late)! I spent this weekend celebrating March so much that I didn't have time to post this Irish Soda Bread. Better late than never, right? Plus, what recipe is more appropriate to post for the month of March and the upcoming St. Patrick's Day than a traditional Irish quick bread? So without further ado, let's chat about this bread.