With regards to my girl, I'm feeling grateful for the friends that aren't too cool for school...the friends who coax out the goofy on days when she might be taking herself just a little too seriously. Sweet girls, this mama thanks you. xoxo
Auntie, The Girl and I ventured out into the Texas heat yesterday to make a trip to the Farmers' Market. The market feels so abundant right now. Every booth is overflowing with all manners of leafy green veggies, summer squash, peppers, tomatoes, herbs and flowers. I had two main motivators for this trip: 1. Bread and Butter Pickles from Dai Due and 2. Peaches! We're going through Texas peaches over here faster than I can actually catch up with. Every time I go to bake something up, the bushel on the counter has been depleted. So, we went the market to try and find some peaches that we could bake up into a cake in the afternoon. Lucky for us we found baskets of perfectly ripened peaches at the Lightsey Farms booth, where our friend Debi always greets us with her beautiful, beaming smile. We went straight home from the market and got to peeling those peaches. The girl did most of the peeling, chopping and mixing, which gave me the opportunity to watch her work and take some pictures. I just can't put into words how much I love watching her confidence in the kitchen. I take entirely too many pictures of her hands, I think because I'm amazed at how deftly they move through their tasks when we're cooking. She learns so quickly, and it translates directly to how her hands work...with purpose...I don't know why, but I just find that to be so beautiful.
Peach Bundt Cake with Peach Glaze
Pre-butter and sprinkle with flour, One 10" bundt cake pan
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
3 cups all-purpose flour, sifted
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 cup of unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp almond extract
1/2 cup greek yogurt
1/2 cup peach puree (1-2 peaches pureed in blender or food processor)
2 cups peaches, peeled and diced (about 6 peaches)
2 cups confectioner's sugar
3-4 tbsp peach juice (strained of any pulp)
1. In a medium bowl, combine sifted flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon and set aside.
2. In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, lightly beating after the addition of each egg.
3. Add the vanilla and almond exracts and beat.
4. Add the yogurt and peach puree and lightly beat to incorporate.
5. Add the flour mixture in three separate batches, mixing after each addition.
6. Gently fold in the peaches
7. Pour batter into pre-greased bundt pan, and smooth the top.
8. Place the pan on a baking sheet and bake, rotating the sheet about two-thirds of the way through the baking time, until a cake tester inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean, 60-70 minutes. Cool in the pan on a wire rack for 20 minutes. Invert the pan on the rack to turn the cake out; let cool completely on the rack.
9.To make the glaze: In a small bowl, whisk the peach juice into the confectioners' sugar, adding the juice gradually, so that the glaze is just liquid enough to pour easily but still opaque. Place a sheet pan under the cooling rack. Spoon the glaze over the cooled cake, allowing the excess to drip onto the baking sheet. Allow the glaze to cool completely for 30 minutes, then serve.
My Blog Reader is broken down into different categories like: For the Images, For the Love of Crafting, Foodies, For the Music and For the Words. I've noticed lately that the collection of blogs that I read in the "For the Words" category seem to have one common thread. I'm drawn to reading about people who actively trying to figure out what this whole thing is about. Not in the super deep, super spiritual kind of way...but in the day to day kind of way. I love reading the words of people who find themselves split wide open by the challenges that they are presented in their families, or in their lives and the fierce love they meet these challenges with. In some cases we're not like minded on other issues in our lives, but I'm digging that above all this common love for our children and families overwhelms the feeling of differences and drives home that here we all are, humans on this earth trying to figure it out the best that we can.
Several of these blogs I've been reading for a long time, and encourage you to scroll back if you have a little extra time to acquaint yourselves with the written history of these families in blog form. The nuggets you will find are worth the time, I think. I'm not going to write any intros, for fear that I wouldn't do them justice, and you wouldn't click through. Just give try them on for size?
** Do you have words that move you in a similar way? Or do you read blogs that speak to you? Please share them in the comments. I'm always looking for that thread that pulls us all together, you know? I'd love it if you'd share. With love and many thanks.
I've listed the blog first and a favorite post from that blog underneath the main link:
Line baking sheets with parchment or silicone baking mat
Makes between 20-28 cookies depending on the size you choose
2 1/4 cups of Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 cup butter (room temperature but firm)
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup cocoa powder (Natural, Unsweetened)
1 cup white chocolate chips
3/4 cup bittersweet chocolate chips
In a medium bowl, mix together the flour, baking soda and salt and set aside.
In a large bowl, beat together the butter and sugars until creamy. Beat in the eggs one at a time until incorporated. Add in the vanilla and mix. Beat in the cocoa powder until just mixed. Add the flour/baking soda/salt mixture slowly and continue to beat on a low speed until you have a thick cookie batter. With a mixing spoon, fold in the bittersweet and white chocolate chips.
Using a 1/4 cup ice cream scoop or 1/4 cup measuring cup, portion out the dough on to the pre-lined baking sheets. Flatten the dough mounds a little bit with your finger tips. Make sure to leave ample space between your cookies because they will spread while they're baking.
Bake 10-12 minutes or until a little crispy around the edges. Remove from oven and place baking sheets on cooling racks for 5 minutes. Transfer the cookies to the wire rack to cool completely.
*Note: If you like your cookies crispier, allow them to bake a few minutes longer. These are instructions for gooier, chewier cookies.
Last week's basket from Farmhouse Delivery was chocked full of delectable summer vegetables but truthfully, I was feeling a little uninspired by another round of zukes and yellow summer squash. However, one night several of my friends (who also received similar baskets) started Facebook talking about what they were going to do with theirs. Their dishes sounded so good! Nothing like a little food talk to get re-inspired. I had a little pesto in the fridge and a hunk of gruyere...simple flavors that layer nicely with squashed when baked up together.
Baked Summer Squash and Tomatoes with Pesto
Serves 4 as a side
Preheat oven to 375 degrees
1 large zucchini
1 large yellow summer squash
2 medium tomatoes (ripe)
1/3 cup basil pesto
1 cup gruyere - shredded
salt and pepper
Pre-grease the bottom and sides of a 3 quart baking dish with oil, butter or pesto. Slice the zucchini, yellow summer squash and tomatoes in 1/4" rounds. Fill the baking dish in single layer, overlapping each row a little bit. Once the baking dish is full brush the tops of the vegetables with pesto. Sprinkle with a pinch of salt and pepper.
Spread the gruyere evenly over the vegetables.
Bake at 375 degrees for 45 minutes or until the juices are bubbling at the edges and the cheese is a crisp golden brown. Serve warm.