Saturday, October 23, 2010

It's That Time Again

Only it's that time again for me in a whole new place.

The leaves are starting to change color and to fall to the ground. Just a few leaves are falling right now, here and there, but it's a few more everyday.

The tops of the trees are starting to shift, and that's what I see; the hills around here mean we get great views of the changing colors just driving towards downtown or to my workplace.

Some of these pretty things are just not ready to let go yet.

Jason didn't work last night, and doesn't work on Saturdays, so we relished going to sleep at roughly the same time last night. Of course we were up way too late playing video games at our friend's house, but such is a truth of life; when video games are there, we play them. We bought Fallout: New Vegas which we just sort of fell head-over-heels into. Jason is playing it as I write this.

We also drink delicious beer; Jason and I found a beer that is actually made with real pecans when it's brewing, and it's probably the best light-ish red beer I've ever had. I am not a light beer drinker; I can't stand any beer that doesn't have a lot of character to its taste.

This beer, though, this is the kind of beer I'd take for my brother-in-law to try at Christmas...

which I just may do.

So last night when I got off work, I discovered that Jason and Justin both were there to pick me up, and we had this amazing beer and Jason and Justin played Halo: Reach with each other and I fell asleep several times because apparently I cannot stay awake after I work. I sure hope this doesn't happen next Saturday at the Halloween party.

In any case, delicious beer is not all I got to experience this weekend. Jason and I ran a couple of errands today and ran into a Halloween store, where we were able to pick up 1 of the 3 small things I need to finish my costume for the party in Clemson next Saturday. I got home, prepared to bake, and realized we were out of milk, so I had to run to CVS to snag from milk. There's a CVS like a minute's drive down the road. There's a gas station a minute's drive down the road. I am sort of wallowing in all of this convenience right now.

In any case, I baked a recipe I have tried once before: a Spiced Nut Cornbread. I got the recipe out of a cookbook I bought when we went to visit Hagood Mill about a month ago. I tried it once before and it came out a little too dry; the recipe called for about two times as much baking powder as is actually needed.

I tried it again today, and... success!

So I will be nice and share the recipe with all of you... and suggest that you really do try this out for yourselves, it is SO GOOD.

Spiced Nut Cornbread

1 cup sifted all-purpose flour (I used whole-wheat flour, and it was delicious)
2 Tablespoons baking powder (honestly, you could probably cut it down to 1)
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon each of ground allspice and nutmeg 
1 cup cornmeal (I used yellow, recipe called for white)
1 cup finely chopped pecans
1 cup milk
2 eggs, beaten
3 tablespoons melted butter

Pre-heat your oven to 400 degrees Farenheit. Spray a 9 x 9 baking pan with non-stick spray, or use a non-stick baking pan. Sift the dry ingredients (sans nuts) into a large mixing bowl. Usually I might say sifting isn't necessary, but I found this time that sifting made a huge difference in how well the dry ingredients mixed. Add the nuts, mix with a mixer or honestly just a good fork. Add beaten eggs, milk, and melted butter. Mix until it forms a thoroughly mixed, slightly lumpy batter.

Pour into baking pan and bake for roughly 20 minutes. Depending on your oven, you may need an extra five to ten minutes; the original recipe wanted you to bake for half an hour, but I found that was way too long and my bread was done in about 20.

Cut into wedges and serve immediately. Delicious with honey and butter.

I am so glad I tried this recipe again! It is so amazing. Jason and I just devoured half the dish in about fifteen minutes and I'm pretty sure instead of me having pre-made dessert like I planned, this is dinner. Delicious honey-covered dinner.

Now; off to watch Jason play video games... and possibly make myself some coffee. This is the kind of dessert cornbread that really calls for some coffee with plenty of cream and sugar. It just so happens that my in-laws (have I mentioned how awesome my in-laws are?) recently went on vacation and came back with incredible coffee beans for us...

Well, I'm off. 

If I'm hyperactive in about half an hour, you'll know it was the coffee.

Send help.

Or more coffee.

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