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321 – TWDP – Weekend in New Hampshire

This weekend I went to see my BFF in New Hampshire and Saturday turned into a baking free for all!!!  Her son helped, I helped and we cranked out some awesome cookies.  After baking – though we had plans for some yummy food for dinner – it was time to get out of the kitchen!  We headed to Olive Garden (one of my favorite restaurants!) and then off to see Sherlock Holmes: Game of Shadows.  Great movie!

I’m so glad to see the way Robert Downey, Jr. has cleaned his act up.  For me it was like he turned up his nose at Hollywood and said….I can beat this and I can come out on top.  Makes me respect him so much more as an actor and as a person.

It’s always wonderful to see my friend and I don’t do it nearly enough.  She lives 4 hours away and while that’s closer than my friend who is a 24 hour drive away – in Texas – it’s still tough to make the trip.  One of the things I am working on is making more friends that actually live near me.  My two BFFs are deeply ingrained in my life.  They know me better and have known me longer than my husband.  They are my family, the sisters of my heart.  For years the though of having other friends that know me even half as well has been scary.  It felt like a betrayal in my heart if that makes sense.  Yet I am coming to realize that I need the female companionship, the daily camaraderie that I simply can’t get from them because of the distance they are away from me.  I’m the dysfunctional one because they both have other friends they hang out with.  LOL  And lately I’ve been coming to realize the depth of my dysfunction.  How much of it was the depression, how much of it is my personality I’m not yet sure but it’s something I’m working on.

So about the cooking.  Here are the recipes we used and they were AWESOME!

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The beauty of a rainy day

The past few days have been hot and humid – a marriage made in misery.  To say I’m not a fan of either would be an understatement!  So while I’ve always loved a cool, rainy day it’s especially welcome following the sticky weather we’ve had.  There are, I’m sure, quite a few people upset because today is a holiday and not exactly beach weather.  This weekend is the unofficial end of summery and I’m throwing my party hat in the air!  Good riddance heat and humidity.  Bring on the crisp, cool fall days and nights.  Bring on the apples, pumpkins and Indian Corn.

But rainy days…ahhh…they are beautiful to me.  The kind of days made for curling up with tea and a book or for baking in the kitchen.

I’ve got some Zucchini in the kitchen and an awesome recipe I want to try out.  I’ll report back on my success or strike out.

Recipe courtesy of Good Life Eats:

Zucchini Apple Spice Muffins

  • 5 cups grated fresh zucchini
  • 1 cup grated apple
  • 3/4 cup melted unsalted butter
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 4 eggs, beaten
  • 4 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1/2 cup applesauce
  • 4 teaspoons baking soda
  • Pinch salt
  • 6 cups all-purpose flour
  • 5 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon allspice
  • couple dashes of ginger
  • Zest of 1 medium orange

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. In a large bowl, mix together the sugar, eggs, vanilla, and applesauce. Mix in the grated zucchini and apple and then the melted butter. In a separate bowl, stir together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, and ginger. Add these dry ingredients to the zucchini mixture. Fold in the orange zest.

Line muffin cups with paper liners. Divide batter evenly among cups – I used a scant 1/4 c per muffin. Bake on the middle rack until muffins are golden brown, and the top of the muffins bounce back when you press on them, about 25 to 30 minutes. Set on wire rack to cool for 5 minutes. Remove muffins from the tin let cool another 20 minutes (if you can wait that long!).

Note: this was a double batch from the original recipe, in addition to a few other changes. Recipe made approximately 3 dozen.

Category: Baking, Cooking, I read too!, Scraps  Comments off