Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Lessons Learned at 2 am

Last night I stayed up late watching Memphis take on Miami on ESPN. For those of you who know me, the start time (midnight) was already 2 hours past my bed time. In the 2 hours and 30 minutes that it took for my Tigers to eek out a win over Miami, I learned many valuable lessons. here they are, in no particular order.

1. It is not that hard to stay up late when your heart is racing. adrenaline bordering on cardiac arrest makes one decidedly not sleepy.
2. Luna's farts seem to give the Tigers extra energy. At half time, she was particularly gassy, and we all saw how the Tigers came out after the half. Once she fell asleep, they were less energetic. And when she woke up at the end of the game to release another one, chris crawford made his 3 pointer.
3. my Memphis pajama pants are NOT lucky.
4. i seem to have a knack for knowing when we are going to miss dunks. it is usually the ones that are wide open.
5. rubbing luna's little behind and saying "what a lucky bottom" seems to be helpful. though this method needs to be further tested.
6. angel garcia is still the ugliest man on the planet. and i am using the term "man" loosely considering he (and will coleman for that matter) played like a bunch of pansy girls last night and couldnt get a flippin rebound. okay i lied. they got 2. each. NOT OKAY.
7. we have a young team. which is fine, but, Lord have mercy, they make some freshman mistakes.
8. joe jackson needs to eat.
9. will barton needs to play to his hype. his brother is outshining him. injury or no injury, dude is lackluster.
10. when we are failing miserably on offense, we make up for it in some serious man defense. the good thing about having a team with this many talented players is that you can keep the rotation fresh, and the defense stays intense. if it weren't for defense, we would have been crushed.
11. for all pastner's hype about rebounding at the beginning of the season, we were destroyed on the boards. 41-21. really, gentlemen? and i say gentlemen on purpose, because only gentle people let others WALK ALL OVER THEM.
12. josh pastner is beautiful.
13. even with all the negatives of this game, pastner make good coaching decisions and our players never lost heart. i count those as two very good things to serve us the rest of the year.
14. i love it when my handsome and health conscious boyfriend talks basketball with me. it's 2 of my 3 favorite things all in one... and if Luna could talk or play basketball that would make 3 of my favorite things all in one.
15. one of my yoga poses is called balancing stick. our instructors say it is "having a little heart attack now so you dont have a big one later." Having one mini heart attack during yoga is enough. i would much rather my teams win by substantial margins. i feel that it will be more beneficial to my health.
16. since my daddy is a cardiologist, i am pretty sure the tigers pulled the whole "heart attack" game plan as a silly birthday present to him. pretty sure.
17. all in all, both my teams are 2-0. In yale grading terms, i give them an H. this grade is subject to change and contingent upon future performances.

go tigers go.

and, let's go hoyas (whose took care of business last night and thus did not warrant a somewhat criticizing blog post)!

ultra love.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Pumpkin Extenda-Week #4: Pumpkin Bread, but not the kind you think

Pumpkin Bread- but the kind with yeast, not the kind you are used to.

this bread is reallllly yummy. it's even better toasted with some butter on it. This would be great as a bread to go with thanksgiving dinner- that is, if you don't eat sister schubert rolls like we do. nothing beats sister schubert. duh.

Recipe from here
  • Ingredients:
  • 15 oz. can pumpkin puree
  • 2 large eggs
  • 4 tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. ground ginger
  • ¼ tsp. ground cloves
  • 1 ½ tsp. salt
  • 1 tbsp. instant yeast
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 4 ¾ cups all-purpose flour

In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine pumpkin puree, eggs, butter, spices, yeast, brown sugar, and 2 ¾ cups of the flour.

Mix on medium-low speed until combined. Add in the remaining 2 cups of flour and mix on low speed until incorporated and the ingredients have formed a dough.

Switch to the dough hook and continue kneading on low speed until dough is smooth and elastic, about 5-8 minutes. (Add additional flour 1 tablespoon at a time if necessary to help the dough clear the sides of the bowl.) Here is a video to show you what the dough should look like. it took me a while to get it to the right consistency.

Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap and let rise for 1 to 1 ½ hours; it should have expanded somewhat but won’t be wildly puffy.

Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface, divide it in half, and then divide each half into three equal pieces. Roll each piece into an 18” log.

Working with three logs at a time, make a braid, pinching the ends together.

Coil the braid into a lightly greased 8” or 9” cake pan, shaping it into a wreath-like circle and pressing the ends together where they meet. Repeat with the remaining logs.

Cover both pans with lightly greased plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place for about 90 minutes until they look puffy, although not doubled in bulk.

Bake the bread at 350° F for 30 minutes, until lightly browned and an instant-read thermometer inserted into the center reads 190° F. Remove the wreaths from the oven and allow them to cool on a wire rack.


ultra love.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Pumpkin Extenda-Week Recipe # 3: Pumpkin Snickerdoodle Bars

Greetings all- today we are making (drum roll please!!!!!)
Pumpkin Pie Snickerdoodle Bars
(recipe from here)

and we also have the sweetest girl in the world as a helper!
To begin, please gather your ingredients.

Snickerdoodle Layer
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups packed brown sugar
1 cup butter, at room temperature
2 eggs, at room temperature
1 tablespoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350F. Lightly grease a 9x13 inch pan and lay a piece of parchment paper across the pan, so that it extends the pan slightly (see pictures below). The parchment paper is an optional step, but it will make it easier to get the bars out later

To make snickerdoodle layer:
Sift together flour, baking powder and salt and set aside.

Make note not to put the sugar in the flour mixture. you will need to get that out if you do.
In large bowl, beat together butter, sugar, egg and vanilla until smooth.
Stir in the flour mixture until well blended.

Spread evenly in prepared pan (mixture will be thick and cookiebatter-ish.)
Next gather your pumpkin Pie layer ingredients.

Pumpkin Pie Layer
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup white sugar
1 stick butter, at room temperature
1 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice (1/2 tsp cinnamon, 1/4 tsp ginger, 1/4 tsp nutmeg, 1/4 tsp nutmeg)
2 eggs, at room temperature
1 1/2 cups canned pumpkin

To make pumpkin pie filling:

In a mixer bowl (you can use the same one you used to make the snickerdoodle batter) with a paddle attachment, mix together butter and sugar. Add the rest of the ingredients and mix until well combined. This layer will be less thick and more pourable.

Pour over the snickerdoodle layer, smoothing out the top.

Combine white sugar and cinnamon in a little bowl. Evenly sprinkle cinnamon sugar mixture over the top of the batter.
Bake for 33-40 minutes @350 (maybe more depending on your oven) or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the pan comes out clean. Let the bars cool completely (about an hour). They will deflate a bit and remain a bit pie-like on the top layer. The bars that are closer to the edges of the pan will be more firm.

Next is the Drizzle
1 oz white chocolate, chopped
1/4 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice

After the bars are completely cool, place the chopped white chocolate into a bowl or zip-lock bag and melt on low power. When it's completely melted, add the pumpkin pie spice and mix (or knead if using a zip lock bag). Use a spoon or cut a small corner off the bag and drizzle the melted chocolate over the top of the bars and let it cool and harden.

**** This whole drizzle thing was not as easy as it sounds. That is why my drizzle looks a little homeless. The white chocolate is not all that necessary, but it is yummy. *****

Use the parchment paper to lift the bars out of the pan. Place on a cutting board and cut into bars. Store in a covered container.

These have been my fav recipe so far. really. i could have eaten the whole pan by myself. or like 60000 pans. forever.

so goood. go make them. now.

ultra love.

Monday, November 1, 2010