Not-So-Irish Soda Bread Buns, with Orange Zest and Cranberries

photo-34

Roo turned down the car radio. “Do rappers realize that some of their lyrics make no sense?”

“You mean when Chingy raps that he likes, ‘black, white, Puerto Rican or Haitian, like Japanese, Chinese or even Asian?”

“Even Asian?”

I opened my purse and pulled out a ziploc bag. “But that’s not even close to Mase rapping, ‘Young, black and famous, with money hanging out the anus.”

“No. The best is Dre’s ‘Never let me slip, cause if I slip, then I’m slippin.'”

I laughed, tearing the soda bread bun in two and handing a half to Roo. “What does that even mean?!”

Roo grabbed the bun and shrugged, “At least they’re direct, even if it doesn’t make sense. Like Chris Brown singing, ‘I’m gonna make you wet the bed.’ Class act.”

“Ugh, who says stuff like that!?” I groaned, “I still can’t believe Rihanna’s back with He Who Must Not Be Named.”

“Did you just compare Chris Brown to Voldemort?”

“I’m convinced he appears like Beetlejuice if you say his name three times.”

“That’s how I feel about Kesha.”

“You mean you don’t like to feel ‘like a sabertooth tiger, sipping on a warm Budweiser?'”

Roo turned the radio back up. “I want my ring back.”

Continue Reading for Recipe

Advertisements

Coconut Rum Bread

DSC01084

Taking classes at night is a whole other animal compared to my glory days of undergrad. After a long day I have no patience for students who only like to hear the sound of their voice. Perhaps that makes me the worst kind of classmate, especially after muttering, “I kill you” when one of my peers asks his eighth non-question.

Nighttime lecture-hall manners are kind of an anomaly: like getting stared at while I licked the lid of my yogurt clean. It was as if my row-mates were accusing me of reenacting a very (very) awkward porno scene; although it was a lid to a 32 ounce container (about the size of my head).

The worst is when you’re seated next to an incessant desk tapper,

tumblr_inline_mgadik1cQo1ro2d43
source

a Red-Bull-drinking-open-mouth-breather

tumblr_lvbx1tdgCL1r4eeffo1_500
source

or God forbid, the I’m-kicking-the-back-of-your-seat-because-I-want-to-see-you-turn-into-my-very-own-fun-sized-Hulk.

tumblr_m5hiczpD0U1qlae84o1_500
source

But there’s hope.

DSC01089

Sharing snacks in class is kind of an icebreaker.

And when you break bread with your classmates, they totally will join you, hating on that guy that won’t stop clicking his pen.

Just stop, guy. Seriously.

Continue Reading for Recipe

Soft Crunch Banana Bread

“I may have referred to myself as an STD today,” I said, sitting down next to Roo on the couch; my purse and gym bag still slung over my shoulder.

Roo furrowed his brow. “You what?”

“You know how I haven’t been able to take my favorite spin class because of the Lexington job?”

“Yes.”

I sighed. “Well, I finally went. When I walked into the studio, my instructor exclaimed, ‘You’re back!’ and I replied -”

“Do I even want to know?”

I looked down at the floor and muttered, “I’m back. Like herpes.”

“No.”

“Yes.”

Roo shook his head. “No. Just….no.”

“Then I said I made her a loaf of banana bread.”

“I’m guessing she wasn’t too excited to take it from you.”

“She looked at me as if I had put my hair in it.”

“Well-”

“I know!” I whined.

Roo patted me on the back and removed my purse and gym bag from my shoulder.

“Oh, thanks.”

“No problem,” he replied, as he opened my purse.

“What are you -”

Roo looked up. “I’m looking for the banana bread. So what if you put your hair in it.”

Continue Reading for Recipe

Skillet Cornbread

Sometimes I wish I could go back in time and talk some sense into YesterLys.

Who?

YesterLys is me, 12 hours ago.  And she doesn’t realize that her bad decisions screw me every time.

I’m not doing laundry over the weekend!

Come Monday morning I’m taking the T in damp socks I had to hand wash before work. Curse you, YesterLys.

I’ll shave my legs tomorrow.

With the pants, silk sleeveless shirt, jacket and the building’s broken air conditioner I sweat like Robert Hays on Airplane.

At a job interview.

I couldn’t even take my jacket off because I hadn’t shaved my underarms either.  I did try to blot the sweat with a copy of my CV.

I didn’t get the job. Thanks a lot YesterLys.

Just one more slice. No one’s going to notice.

“Where did all the cornbread go?”

“Um…I ate it all?”

“In a day?”

“Damn you YesterLys.”

Continue Reading for Recipe

Carrot, Raisin and Cranberry Quick Bread

I opened the door to our apartment. “You will not believe what happened at yoga,” I said, kicking off my sandals and walking into the living room.

“What, The Moaner make another appearance?” Roo asked.

“I wish.”

Roo took a bite of toast and set it down on the coffee table. “What happened?”

“Well, as you know, sometimes I come off as a creeper.”

“Go on.”

I folded my arms and threw myself onto the couch next to Roo. “I don’t want to talk about it.”

Roo picked up his toast again and took another bite. A raisin fell onto his lap. “Ok.”

I eyed the raisin for a moment. “Well, you know how I love it when a yoga instructor takes a class I’m in?”

“Something about it being inspirational?”

I smiled. “You’re so good. Sometimes I really can’t believe you listen everything I say.”

Roo laughed. “So a yoga teacher took the same class as you -”

“Right. She set her mat down next to mine -” I paused.

“And?”

“And I may have been watching her through some of the poses.”

“And she caught you watching?”

“That’s not even the bad part.”

Roo waited.

“When the class was told to fold in straddle, facing the right side of the room, that was the side the instructor was on. And our mats were really close.”

“And?”

“And when I went to fold, I accidentally brushed the instructor’s butt with the bun on top of my head,” I said, pointing to my hair.

Roo burst out laughing.

“It’s not funny.”

“It’s a little funny.”

“It is not! I had to apologize profusely in a whisper, because it was during class. Do you know how creepy an apology sounds in a whisper?”

“Well I’ve never been assaulted by a bun in yoga class, so I wouldn’t know.”

“I don’t know if I can ever show my face there again.”

“Here,” Roo said, handing me his slice toast. “Have some of this. I’ll make you a cup of tea.”

I picked the raisin off his lap and placed it on the plate. “It’s not enough.”

“What’s not enough?”

“There’s like two bites left. And they’re the worst ones. No cranberries or raisins in either one.”

Roo smiled. “Alright, I’ll cut you another slice. Thankfully you made two loaves last night.”

Continue for Recipe

Lime Pound Cake

“Are you packing cake in your purse?”

I zipped my bag closed. “Yes.  I need it after the bars close.”

Roo looked at me, puzzled. “Why?”

“Whenever I go out with E, I end up drinking more than I should. And unfortunately, we have a history of making terrible decisions when that happens.”

“Like falling asleep, hugging a half-eaten bowl of Cheerios?” Roo joked.

“I can’t believe you remembered that.”

“Well the bowl was on my side of the bed.”

“I know.  And E hasn’t forgotten about finding me in her bed, drooling on a box of crackers.”

“You’re like the Goldilocks of after hours.”

“There were crumbs everywhere.” I sighed, bending over to fix the strap on my sandal.  I tucked it back into its clasp and stood back up. “This is why I need to bring a snack.  For all I know, E and I could relive our worst meal in college.”

“Dirty water hot dogs?”

I shook my head. “Pasta Roni with Cheese Dogs. I swear I had heartburn for days.”

Roo turned to the kitchen table and cut a slice of cake. “Here,” he said, wrapping it with aluminum foil and placing it in my hand. “Bring another slice.”

Continue Reading for Recipe

Brown Soda Bread

Relationships are full of compromise.

“Can you turn off the light?”

Roo rolled over. “Why do I have to turn off the light?”

I shut my book and placed it on the floor by the bed. “Because you won’t let me buy a Clapper.”

“Because we’re not 90 years old.”

I clapped twice. “See, if we had the Clapper right now, we’d be sleeping.”

“We’re not getting a Clapper. But I’ll turn off the light.”

Sometimes there’s bargaining.

“Big Dave wants to play Halo.”

“Does Big Dave know that Halo makes my eyes bleed?”

Roo laughed. “Big Dave only plays Halo and he just texted to see if I’d play.”

I pursed my lips. I did not want to spend the evening hearing the game announce phrases like, ‘Yoink,’ ‘Swat’ and ‘Infected,’ repeatedly. “I’ll play Minecraft with you if you don’t play Halo.”

Roo set down his controller. “You never want to play Minecraft.”

“I do. Right now.”

“So I won’t play Halo?”

“I’ve been meaning to get into an 8-bit world where you can, you know, mine things.”

“One hour.”

“What?”

“One hour. I don’t want you to play for sixty seconds and say you’re done.”

“You know me too well. Ten minutes.”

“An hour. I know you’ll like it.”

“Thirty minutes, and I get to keep all the cool stuff we find.”

“This coming from the girl who never wanted to play Minecraft.”

But more often than not there are unexpected moments of thoughtfulness.

“I spent my last hour at work talking to a PhD who thinks he’s God,” I said, walking in to our apartment.

“I’m making us a snack,” Roo called out from the kitchen.

“You’re what?” I kicked off my shoes, closed the door and walked over to the stove.  “Oh, you made toast! Is there peanut butter?”

“It’s in the cupboard.” Roo said, handing me a slice of deeply browned soda bread.  “Careful, it’s still hot.”

I grabbed the tub of peanut butter out of the cupboard and popped off its lid. “How did you know this is exactly what I wanted?”

“When you texted me, ‘I just pictured his face melting off,’ I figured this would be a better solution.”

“Of course. Less mess.”

Continue Reading for Recipe

Chocolate Zucchini Cake with Dark Chocolate Icing

There are a lot of things I’m terrible at.

I’m awkward when meeting someone for the first time; saying what immediately pops into my mind. “Oh, you’re from Arizona? Does that mean you grew up with crystals and learning about energy fields?”

Every other driver is ‘Dude’ when I’m behind the wheel (especially when the try to cut me off). “Dude…Dude…Dude! Were you even looking?!”

And general housekeeping is beyond me.  I rarely (if ever) vacuum, I hate doing the dishes, and I can’t fold a fitted sheet.  Seriously, those elasticated corners? Worse than figuring out a rubix cube.

Right now you’re thinking Roo is one lucky guy, right?

But I can make cake.

Really good chocolate cake.

Continue Reading for Recipe

Yogurt Cake with Lemon and Blueberries

Every morning I walk into the kitchen, turn on NPR, sit at the table and open my laptop. I check my email, Facebook and Twitter.  I scroll through updates/tweets from hours prior, often wondering if other people go through the same ‘ritual’ everyday.

“When you check your Facebook, do you keep scrolling until you see something you remember from the day before?” I asked Roo, as he walked into the kitchen.

He stopped and scratched his chest, his eyes bleary from just waking up. “That’s exactly what I do.”

“I thought I was the only one.”

“It’s the most efficient way to do it.”

“And do you hate yourself for technically wasting all that time?”

Roo laughed, “No, it’s the most efficient way to catch up on the ‘News.'”

I got up from the kitchen table and walked over to the Keurig. “And is that typically it?” I asked, flipping the switch on.

“Well, I check Fantasy Baseball and my email too.”

“And wait for me to make the coffee,” I joked.

“If by ‘making the coffee’ you mean, pushing a button, then yes,” he replied, as he removed the saran wrap from the yogurt cake on the counter.

I pointed at the slice he was about to pop into his mouth. “And make you breakfast cake?” I said.

“I believe this appeared on the counter overnight. It could have been Monkey who made this.”

“Yes, our evil cat has developed a sudden penchant for lemon, blueberries and baking.”

“Correction, our evil genius of a cat.”

Continue Reading for Recipe

A Simple, Warm Breakfast Bowl

I am not the most pleasant person to share a bed with.  I sleep with my mouth open.  I drool. I steal blankets; winding them around me, making them impossible to take back.  And if you try to wake me it’s like poking an angry bear.

Don’t even get me started on how I look first thing in the morning.  Let’s just say I’m notorious for not removing my eyeliner and by 6 a.m. I look like I spent the whole night crying and fighting with myself.

It wouldn’t surprise me if Roo left me in the middle of the night, but he’s been a good sport.  We rarely get up without one another unless he has to get up early for extra help before school.

Roo’s currently on April vacation, and when I rolled over at 5:30 this morning I wondered what he was doing up so early on a non-school day.  Pre-coffee and bleary eyed (again, I hadn’t removed my eyeliner), I wandered out into the hallway.

Was he in the bathroom?  I knocked on the door, “Love?”

“Yeah,” Roo answered from the living room.

I walked over and sat next to him on the couch, “Oh good. You’re alive.”

“Hmm?”

“I thought you didn’t come back to bed was because you were in the bathroom.”

“How long did you think I was in the bathroom for?”

“Well, that’s why I came out.  I was worried that you had died. On the toilet….Like Elvis.”

“So, I guess I should be happy you’re comparing me to the King of Rock?”

“And ignoring the fact that I thought I foresaw your death, woefully on the toilet? Yes.  Anyway, why are you up?”

“I have a headache.”

“Oh…do you want breakfast? Sometimes I get headaches when I’m hungry.”

“If by breakfast, you mean 5 peanut butter and bacon sandwiches, then yes.”

“Five?”

“I mean, you did compare me to Elvis.”

“I know…You really want me to find you dead on the toilet, don’t you.”

“Having you explain to my mother how you found me would be worth it.”

“You’re so dead to me.”

Continue Reading for Recipe