Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Re-Birthday!!!!

That's right, today is Joseph Shmuley Biden's re-birthday: the day we adopted him! We have officially endured one year of wall-chewing, late night barking, computer cord eating and shoe stealing, but we have also enjoyed a year of stink-bug hunting, morning face-licking (although this could easily fall into either category) and tail-wagging.

Today, to celebrate, we dressed Joe up in his costume (for the millionth time) and took him to the UVA Lawn where they give out candy to kids all afternoon. There were tons of people and Joe was a huge hit! Little kids kept going "I see a turtle-dog!" He also wore his costume on Friday night to hear Obama speak in downtown Charlottesville (for photos, by a local photographer, click here). Obama was campaigning for our local Congressman Tom Perriello. There were tons of people and we couldn't hear anything, but Joe liked walking around and seeing all the people, plus we got cookies.

Also to celebrate Halloween, Aaron and I went to an art history party last night--in costume, of course. Aaron dressed as a bee and I was glitter (the craft supply, personified). Mainly, I just like sparkly things.

Monday, October 25, 2010

A Sneak Preview

Here is a sneak preview to whet your appetites for Halloween! Let's just say we went to Target and purchased a costume and Joe S. Biden is going to be the coolest, half-schnauzer/half-something else dog walking around this Halloween. Not to mention Sunday (Halloween) is his re-birthday!!!! That is, the day we adopted him. I think this calls for celebration.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

A New Cook in the Kitchen

The past week (or two weeks?) has just flown by. Aaron and I attended another wedding, took a whirlwind trip to NC and acquired a new sofa in the process. I have also been preparing for two upcoming conferences at which I am presenting papers, the first is this Thursday. Amidst all of this I have pretty much stopped cooking in any capacity. Some mornings I barely manage to pour cereal and milk in a bowl (and just eat cookies instead). Instead, Aaron has been cooking dinner every night and we have been eating some very delicious meals! Chicken and lentils, tandoori chicken, orzo the list goes on and on.

My two favorites of the bunch are probably BLT's and butternut squash gnocchi. We have been eating BLT's a lot lately and I guess they aren't necessarily a blogworthy meal, but they are sooo delicious! (and take only about ten minutes to make). More impressive is the butternut squash gnocchi that Aaron made today. It was truly an endeavor--he started almost as soon as we got home from church this morning and it wasn't finished until 7:30pm. Unfortunately, I was so excited to eat it that I forgot to take any pictures of the finished product, but I can tell you it was worth all the work--very light and full of flavor! Perhaps I will just stay busy forever so Aaron can keep cooking...

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

The Return of me

I looked at my blog today and realized that I haven't posted in almost two months. A ton of things have happened, but almost none of them have been food related, or I guess I should say, almost none of the food related things have involved me baking or cooking. The few things I have made have been either repeat items or less than interesting so I haven't even bothered photographing them.

This apple cake is possibly the one exception. I made this cake for Rosh Hashanah because it is possibly one of the easiest recipes ever and it involves apples--sounds like a winning combination! It isn't very sweet and has no glaze or icing or anything, it is almost like an upside down cake except not upside down. Aaron actually preferred it the next day, cold.

Apple Cake
adapted from Martha Stewart
3/4 cup flour
1 lb. Granny smith apples, peeled and shredded
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 t. baking powder
1/4 t. salt
 6 T. whole milk
1/4 c. vegetable oil
2 eggs
6 T. butter, softened
1/3 c sugar
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 t. vanilla

Preheat oven to 325. Coat an 8-inch springform pan with cooking spray and dust with flour.  Place on a rimmed baking sheet. Spread apples in pan and set aside

Whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, milk, oil, and eggs in a medium bowl until smooth. Pour over apples. Bake until set and pale golden brown, about 40 minutes.

Stir together butter, sugar, egg, and vanilla in a small bowl. Remove cake from oven, and pour topping
over cake. Bake until golden brown, about 25 minutes. Let cool completely in pan on a wire rack. 

Aside from the lack of baking that has been going on around here I have been pretty busy with school. I am presenting papers at two conferences in the next month so I've been busily writing and rewriting those papers. We also spent a weekend in NJ/NY recently and now we are in the midst of back to back weddings. Here is a photo from the weekend we attended this past weekend. Hopefully, I'll be cooking and baking more soon so I will also be updating more!