Banana Bread Muffins

The day before we left for summer vacation back in July I made these muffins and lordy my, why have I been hanging on to the recipe since then?! As I type this out I’m wondering if I can post this speedily enough so that I can whip up a quick batch before S wakes up from her nap. It’s chilly and grey here and if there’s one thing this afternoon could use to spruce it up it’s a banana bread muffin and a cup of tea. Instead – and unfortunately – I will probably stay curled up in my blue chair listening to the Choir of King’s College, Cambridge, and eating pistachio nuts until my time is up and I’m back on duty.

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Rainy (+ Flourless Pumpkin-Chocolate Bread)

It’s raining as I type this, pattering down on the roof and slipping through the leaky skylight on the stairs leading to the second floor. The California wind chime on the porch is merrily beating against itself. Two nights ago there was a fierce windstorm that had the whole house creaking and groaning; I always forget how it does that, and how the desultorily-attached outside shutters blow back and forth with great crashing booms. If during rainstorms my San Francisco apartment felt like being inside a ship at sea – still cozy, though, especially with a wool blanket tucked around my knees – my house in Casablanca during thunder-and lightening storms feels a bit like being inside a tent in the mountains. I was thinking about long ago backpacking trips the other night when the wind tore at our outside bedroom door and then managed to push it open for a minute, how sometimes it seemed as though that flimsy contraption of aluminum and nylon would slide right off the slick granite and tumble down to the valley in the darkness below. We’d huddle in our bags and listen sleep deeply if fitfully and then in the morning the sun would shine brightly again and the breeze would be a gentle thing. Oh the mountains are calling and I must go — yes. Always.

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Into 2015 (+ Flourless Sugar Stars)


[The Pacific from the blowhole, Point Reyes National Seashore 2015.]

Happy new year! I hope your holidays were merry and bright and full of delicious bites and warming drinks. We were asleep by 9:30 on new year’s eve – welcome to parenthood of a young child – but up early on the first day of 2015 with plans for a hike in the Point Reyes Seashore. I made cheese and avocado sandwiches, tucked a bar of good dark chocolate into the backpack along with a few mandarin oranges, filled the water bottles, and left Sierra with her grandparents while we drove through the sun along Tomales Bay. Highway 1 was mostly empty except for a few intrepid bikers here and there and our Hardcore espressos fueled us along the trail for 4+ miles out and back. It was warm and clear at the coast and the Farrallons seemed close enough to touch. Mostly what I think when I am here (and what I always did think) was California, you are so good to us. And, thank you.

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