cakes, prose, woes -- the photos, food & thoughts of a french-speaking seattle-native in brazil

In the end, you're just happy you were there—with your eyes open—and lived to see it. -AB
In the end, you're just happy you were there—with your eyes open—and lived to see it.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Bunnies Eat Banana Bread

marbled loafs and shaky toes

Did you know that i cannot take photos at dawn. My eyes are too bleary. They refuse to focus no matter how earnestly i will them to. After a flash fear of the possibility of an eye-malady, i realized that at 5am it was not only the image, but the numbers on the screen that were blurry. Crap. time to call Nikon. eff my life. What the devil am i doing up at 5am mucking about with photos? When you find the answer please share it with me. Perhaps it's just fatigue then. Fatigue and the mountain of neuroses i have accumulated over the past few weeks (months, years?) maybe.

have you ever done something that seemed so perfect, so sensible (in a nonsensical way,) so overwhelmingly right that the consequences (no matter how gruesome the later loom in speculation) seemed to at the time not matter? why are the easiest things simultaneously the hardest. it becomes omnipresent. you begin to fold it over like a never ending 200 thread count cotton sheet in your subconscious, bending it into a swirling tide of self doubt. it is always a challenge to dress a bed, the sheet stretches one way and pulls up another, and even more the devil is the one that grows as it is spread--it began as a twin, now a double, then from queen to king, it magnifies into emperor and then god size; why attempt the impossible. so why is it that the one something you've wanted more than anything you can ever remember wanting before becomes the most sickeningly terrifying. So five am pre-dawns are the result; as beds, pillows, and night slips the enemies--no sleep for the anxious. no sleep for the crazies. Bake a bread. Drink a tea. Stir the glass. Five. Ten. maybe 12 times. clink. clink. clink. metal on ceramics. morning as the bell tolls to six. ding. ding. ding. So look through the lens: blur. Nothing is right. half closed, half alive; the photo gods will focus it for you, if you plead with them in desperate whisper for help. we all need help. but you must ask. Easter loaves at 5 am, for the long drive to Seattle. A long weekend. Let's get some sleep shall we. But first, a quick easter loaf--humble banana bread, and during the therapy baking session, maybe i will start to remember that we choose to act or not act. and we have to live with the result. what comes comes. you'll always be scared. but that's a given. and if you glaze and top the loaf before it is cool, it will not set and run off the sides in thin streaks. but if you run out of time and miss your chance as the morning draws on, then you will have no bread to take at all. so which will it be. but right now. please. focus. eyes shut. lens, focus. snap. perfect. on y va.

What to take home for easter. wine. duh. but eggs? if you want eggs i suggest you glance for but seven seconds at foodgawker and you will have all the eggs you need. so it turns that you really have no need for me in that. Instead how about something a bit simple, a bit average, a bit ordinary. A banana loaf. An innocent banana loaf. Marbled, perhaps like the bunny's eggs. Chocolate and banana marry together in perfect match of spring as do peanut butter and crumbled toppings. Easter bunny will be pleased. Egg salad sandwich? well hmmm, perhaps you should stick to wheat or white for that. But a scoop of ice cream never hurt anyone.

marbled chocolate banana bread with peanut cream and crumble topping:
ingredients (for one loaf) 2 cups flour ~ 2 eggs ~ 2 or 3 bananas ~ .25 cups cocoa powder ~ 1 tsp baking powder ~ 1 tsp baking soda ~ pinch of salt ~ pinch of cinnamon ~ 1 tbsp (+ maybe a little more ~ 1 packet vanilla sugar ~ 1 stick butter ~ 1 cup sugar 6 oz dark chocolate ~ 1 tbsp peanut butter ~ 1 cup powdered sugar ~ dehydrated banana chips

method: 1) cream butter, add sugar. 2) in a separate bowl, mash bananas with milk. 3) in yet another separate bowl, combine flour, powder, soda, salt, and cinnamon. 4) add eggs to butter mixture, add banana mixture. Add flour mixture. 5) divide batter into two, add cocoa powder and chocolate to half of the batter. 6) in a
buttered loaf pan, spread the two different batters one cup at a time on top of each other, squiggle around if you want for a more marbled effect. 7) Bake for an hour or until done at 325. 8) in a small sauce pan heat powdered sugar, peanut butter, and milk until a thick little glaze 9) paint onto cooled bread loaf, and then cover with crushed banana chips and chopped chocolate.

Mes amies, please have a marvelous Easter holiday, i will enjoy the salty-gray Seattle sky that looms through the bay-size windows of the dentist office waiting room i currently write to you from, as i await dear S as she dances with the drill. Join us for a drink afterward? We will save you a seat. well, for a conversation with me, you will need one. For the blury camera this morning, well, all it was, in the end, was the adjustment switch next to the view finder. nothing to worry about afterall. it was all in my head. Until next week,

a bientot


Manuela © said...

Bonito pão de banana, mas será que os coelhos o comem? :P

Feliz Páscoa :)

Moira said...

Happy Easter to you too Mallory :)

Zurin said...

Hi Mallory, Thanx 4 visiting my blog and the nice comments. I love ur blog..its amazing! I love ur red polka dot choc roll!!! Its soo dramatic and u mind if I make one just like it and post it on my blog?? or maybe Ill make it a different color. Bt Ill credit and link u for sure. Its just irresistable! and soooo cute. i was just gawking at it!

M.Lane said...

I just re-visited your blog and I just love it! Except that it makes me very hungry...

Happy Easter to you also!


PS. A VERY belated thanks for the nice comment you left some time ago on my blog. I hope you have come back since. You inspired me to many more posts.

Christy said...

What are you doing up at 5 am? no wonder you couldn't find the adjustment switch to your viewfinder! Really, is the sun even UP??

I'm not into making classic easter treats also, at least not this year. Nice shots of the bread though, and love the crushed banana chips and chocolate chips that you stuck on the crust.

Cannelle Et Vanille said...

and did they enjoy it? i bet they did! self doubt in 200 thread count sheets... i like that!

Y said...

Happy belated Easter to you. Up at 5am to shoot photos seems a bit hard core! Lucky there's cake at the end of the tunnel..

Colloquial Cook said...

WHERE are the bunnies? Hein? You can make anything cute and un-williams and Sonoma looking, so I was kinda hoping you'd feature cute bunnies. I have a no bunnie policy on my blog.

Unknown said...

This looks so yummy:)