March 30, 2011

Thank God I've taught my 3 {almost 4} year old to bake!

This is not my usual type of musing {or maybe it is but with just a little added bonus at the end}. I am not a gourmet cook, or pastry chef- and while I may have at one time pretended to be... well cooking is really NOT in my wheelhouse! But I do like to bake from time to time, and I have a few tricks up my sleeve for when a home cooked meal is required. This recipe however is something new we tried! {You're gonna have to read my entire rambling before getting to the recipe!}
The temperatures are once again hitting that 90* mark, which means we will be in triple digits before I know it.  This is not my first go round with summer in the sun scorched desert- I have been here four and a half years now {Wow! Did I really just say that?  I doesn't seem possible we've been gone from Southern California that long!} so I know what is required to survive this very dry heat. 

Yesterday morning I pushed myself especially hard at Stroller Strides I am preparing for Body Back in two weeks and I need to step up my game if I want to survive the 8 weeks that I am staring down at the moment. {a blog post about Body Back and 1 year anniversary update is coming via Project Stroller Strides - I PROMISE!} So.... I pushed myself extra hard but didn't really hydrate any more than normal. I was sweating and thirsty but....apparently not thinking. Then I dropped Gigi at school and made Lula lunch, but I wasn't hungry. {Duh.... This is one of the symptoms of dehydration} and somewhere deep down in that brain of mine I knew that if I had a small protein shake before working out and that pushed myself hard and burned a ton of calories, I should be ravenous. But clearly the sun, heat and lack of water were already starting to eat my brain.

Time to pick up Gigi from school and I was feeling a little woozy..... It's 3 o'clock in the afternoon, I've only had about 40oz of water and I am telling myself "it's just that I haven't eaten." To the grocery store to get the girls something for dinner, the ingredients for our baking experiment and I decide I need to eat something right away! Fried chicken from the deli it is!  I eat in the car - my head hurts and the chicken doesn't seem to be helping. The rest of the night is kind of a blur..... I remember getting a headache and being too tired to do anything. Hubby is on the road again so the girls got to run around like little heathens last night while I walked around like a zombie trying to figure out how to put the house into some semblance of order.  I'd like to tell myself that my girls were suffering without a fully functioning mommy last night, but I think they liked it.... Sure, you want a second ice cream cone... No problem! --- You don't want to take a bath tonight? Perfect Mommy can't deal with bath time anyway..... Yes, please be sure to send in your nominations for me as Mother of The Year!! 

I remember telling myself that I have a headache because I am dehydrated but couldn't seem to bring myself to drink any water.... The evening ended with me dropping into bed early with a splitting migraine and then spending a good portion of the night vomiting.

Long story short {haha} I feel horrible today-- weak and woozy and just plain awful. {but forcing down the water!}  Thank God for Trader Joe's Cereal Bars and their Crushers this morning because cooking eggs for Gigi & Lula was seeming like an insurmountable task.  So breakfast a la TJ's it was!! Of  course my two bundles of boundless energy remembered that we were supposed to bake muffins last night.... and that when mommy couldn't do it then she promised we would first thing this morning..... KILL ME NOW!

I had just told Gigi that our play date with one of her school friends wasn't going to happen because Mommy was too sick. And true to her Elizabeth Taylor persona she had tears and tantrums and every manner of loud and emotional outbursts she could come up with.  I couldn't face another bout of that when I said 'Mommy cannot bake muffins with you this morning peanut" - So Mommy didn't say 'No.' 

I'd done the "worst" of the prep last night {shredding carrots} and all that was left to do was a bit of mixing so.... Out came the Kitchenaid Mixer and with 2 chairs pulled up to the kitchen island, Gigi and Lula got to work. I measured, they combined and mixed- They lined muffin tins with paper cups and spooned batter- and I put the muffins in the oven to bake. Considering how crappy I was feeling it was a really nice way to spend a morning together. It may be 90* in the afternoon but this time of year, the mornings are glorious! We had all of the windows open and a beautiful breeze was blowing in.

We sat on the patio and they enjoyed the fruits of their labor and it was a prefect moment..... until Gigi announced that she didn't want carrot muffins, she wanted apple muffins! - Back to reality...

3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
2/3 cup dark brown sugar
2 tablespoons wheat germ
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
Pinch fine salt
2 large eggs
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
4 medium carrots, grated (about 2 cups)
1/2 cup canned crushed pineapple, drained

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line twelve 1/2-cup muffin cups with paper muffin liners.

Whisk the flours with the brown sugar, wheat germ, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl. In another medium bowl lightly whisk the egg, then whisk in the vegetable oil, and vanilla extract.

Quickly and lightly fold the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients with a rubber spatula. Stir in the carrots and pineapple just until evenly moist; the batter will be very thick. Divide the batter evenly among the muffin cups. Bake until golden and a toothpick inserted in the centers comes out clean, about 30 minutes. Turn muffins out of the tins and cool on a rack. Serve warm.

Copyright 2005 Television Food Network, G.P. All rights reserved.


{Project Simplify}

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

My mother-in-law can't swim. Instead she has made sure that every one of her children knows how to swim so they can save her if she falls in. Right now she's taking my son to and from his swimming lessons. Take a page from her book and make sure your children can cook so when you're too tired they can surprise you with a freshly cooked meal. Start them now! ;-)

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