I Can’t Help That I’m So Interesting.

Saw this on a couple of other blogs and thought it would be fun. So here I go.

The ABC’s of Me.

Addictions: My dog. Adam playing guitar. Peanut butter.

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Bed size: Had a full all my life (excluding when I lived in a dorm), but bought a queen bed when I moved in November.

Chore you hate: Putting away my clothes after doing the laundry. I fold them out of the dryer but sometimes don’t put them away for weeks.

Dogs or cats: I like them both, but I love dogs. Especially Maeby.

Essential start of your day: Coffee. Imperative.

Favorite color: I’m a big fan of dark purple.

Gold or silver: Silver.

Height: My goal when I was younger was to be 5’6″ but you can’t set goals revolving around your height, because you either are or you’re not. Sadly, I’m 5’4″.

Instruments you play (or have played): I played the flute from 4-8 grade. I was pretty good at it.

Jobs titles you’ve had: Babysitter. Cashier. Waitress. Intramural Referee. Assisted Living server. Assistant to the Senior Writer. Assistant Coach at a college. Assistant Coach at a high school. Business Analyst. Marketing Assistant.

Kids: Depends on the kids…I love my niece and nephew. They’re pretty great. One day I do hope to have my own.

Live: Connecticut. Massachusetts for five years.

Mom’s name: Sue. My brother and I call her Crazy Sue.

Nickname: There’s a million of them. I won’t even begin.

Overnight hospital stays: None.

Pet peeve:  Anything involving people not being able to drive. When people leave the sponge in the sink.

Quote from a movie: One of my favorites is from Wedding Crashers. “We have no way of knowing what lays ahead for us in the future. All we can do it use the information at hand to make the best decision possible. It’s gonna be fine. Your whole life is gonna be fine.”

Christopher Walken is so wise.

Right or left handed: Righty.

Siblings: Aaron.

Time you wake up: Usually between 6:30 and 7:30. I have a hard time sleeping in and Maeby usually wakes me up by then anyway.

Underwear: My favorite pairs came from this wonderful store in London called New Look. There was one like half a mile away from me and I’d go shopping there all the time.

Vegetables you dislike: I can’t think of any. I pretty much love everything.

What makes you run late: Forgetting something. I have to go back.

X-rays you’ve had done: Broke my thumb playing field hockey in high school, got hit below the eye with a field hockey ball in college, and got into a car accident in March 2011. I got x-rays for all of those.

Yummy food you make: Everything I make is good. But I am a big fan of taco salads, which I make with this awesome chicken chili I make. I’m not sure if it counts as cooking. Adam can attest to this. It’s kind of  sad because I eat one everyday and will never tire of them. Oh, and also everything I bake.

Zoo animal: Polar bears. Always. Also, this gazelle that Adam and I saw at the San Diego Zoo.

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Peanut Butter Apple Bread

A few weekends back, I was headed to my half-sister’s house for a little get-together. We didn’t have to bring anything, but I really was in the mood to do some baking.

A week prior, I had gotten one of those totes of apples from the grocery store and of course, some of the apples at the bottom of the bag were bruised and didn’t look all that appetizing, so I knew I wanted to do some baking with them. And since I love peanut butter mixed with apples (fact: 40% of my peanut butter consumption involves apples and the other 60% involves a spoon and no self-control), I figured peanut butter apple bread would be perfect.

So I did some searching on the internet but was disappointed that there weren’t very many recipes for peanut butter apple bread. So, I figured I’d just use a basic bread recipe and completely modify to meet my insatiable desire for the apple and peanut butter combo.

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Peanut Butter Apple Bread

Ingredients:
– 1 1/2 cups flour
– 3/4 tsp cinnamon
– 1/2 tsp baking soda
– 1/8 tsp baking powder
– 1/2 cup peanut butter (I used crunchy, but use whatever)
– 1 egg
– 1/2 cup of sugar (you can use up to 1 cup if you want sweeter bread)
– 1 cup unsweetened applesauce
– 1/2 tsp vanilla
– 1 cup peeled and diced apples (approx. 1 apple)

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 350*F and coat a loaf pan with nonstick spray. Mix flour, cinnamon, baking soda and baking powder. In a separate bowl, melt the peanut butter for 30 seconds, then mix in an egg. When the two are mixed, mix in sugar, and then applesauce and vanilla. Once all combined, add the peanut butter mixture to the dry ingredients. Mix thoroughly, and then add in apples. Mix everything together until combined (the batter will be thick, don’t worry!). Pour into a greased loaf pan and bake for one hour, or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Enjoy.

In Which I Might Actually Have a Problem

Okay, that’s a lie.  It’s not really a problem.

I just love to bake.  And I also love peanut butter.  At this point, it should be obvious, especially since I have a peanut butter tag on this blog and my photo blog.  And one of my requirements for someone I date is that they love peanut butter as much as I do.  I wish I was kidding, but I’m not.  Yikes…maybe I do have a problem.

I also love banana bread.  And peanut butter banana bread.  A week ago, I realized I had two bananas that needed to be used.  As much as I love bananas raw, I felt that they would better be used in some banana bread, along with some leftover peanut butter chips that I happened to be snacking on.  So…I found a lovely recipe that was super easy and involved only two bananas.  I modified it a bit, meaning I didn’t include cloves or walnuts, and added in some peanut butter chips.

So here is another recipe for Peanut Butter Banana Bread.  Next time, I think I will actually add in some peanut butter, but for now, I’d be lying if I said this didn’t work out wonderfully.

1 cup of flour
3/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
2 ripe bananas
1 egg
1/4 cup of white sugar
1/4 cup of brown sugar
3/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/4 cup melted butter
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
Peanut butter chips to taste

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a loaf pan.

Sift flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt into a large bowl and mix thoroughly, set aside. In another bowl mash bananas, egg, sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, butter and vanilla together and mix thoroughly. Slowly add dry ingredients into wet ingredients and mix well. Once the batter is well combined add peanut butter chips and stir. Pour ingredients into prepared loaf pan.

Bake in the oven for 40-45 minutes or until a knife inserted into the center comes out clean. Remove from oven and let cool for a few minutes before cutting.

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I actually had to cut into this right away and I should probably note that it was so, so, so good.  Amazing good.  I thought about how great it would be with some vanilla ice cream and maybe some caramel sauce (or, who am I kidding, chocolate and/or peanut butter sauce), but fortunately for me (and my waist line), I don’t have any of that stuff in my house.  But yeah.  Go make this.  It makes a small loaf, so at least if you eat the whole thing you can tell yourself not to feel bad because it wasn’t a “normal”-sized loaf.  (Those are loose quotations around normal.)

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Oh, and if you kids are lucky, I’ll share the recipe for some phenomenal blueberry nut bread I also made last week.  See?  I told you I had a problem.

Peanut Butter Banana Bread

This morning, I got up and decided to take on the task of baking in 110 degree weather (that’s a lie; it’s actually only 85 degrees right now, but it’s basically the same).  I searched around for some recipes and stumbled upon this gem: Peanut Butter Banana Bread.

It’s no secret that I love peanut butter, so when I saw this recipe, I knew I would have to make it.

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I made some minor changes to the Cooking Light recipe, by using half whole wheat flour, an extra banana, and half the suggested amount of sugar and brown sugar.  I also didn’t have ground flaxseed, so I obviously didn’t use that, nor did I use roasted peanuts (because I used crunchy peanut butter instead).

Here is my version of ridiculously delicious Peanut Butter Banana Bread (adapted from Cooking Light, linked above):

Ingredients:
4 whole mashed ripe bananas
1/3 cup plain fat-free yogurt
1/3 cup crunchy all-natural peanut butter
3 tablespoons butter, melted
2 large eggs
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
3/4 cup all-purpose bleached flour
3/4 cup whole wheat flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Preparation:
1. Preheat oven to 350°.

2. To prepare bread, combine first 5 ingredients in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed. Add granulated and brown sugars; beat until blended.

3. Weigh or lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour and the rest of the ingredients in a small bowl. Add flour mixture to banana mixture; beat just until blended. Pour batter into a 9 x 5-inch loaf pan coated with cooking spray. Bake at 350° for 55 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Remove from oven; cool 10 minutes in pan on a wire rack. Remove bread from pan; cool.

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Off to do 100-meter repeats in this hot (almost June!) sun, go apartment hunting with Diana (and then get a two-pound salad from Whole Foods…again), and then enjoy what’s left of the day.

Happy Tuesday…and enjoy the above recipe!