A couple weeks ago when it was still warm enough to make you sweat, we stopped by a lemonade stand on the corner of the street. We chatted with and met new neighbors. I was juggling a cup of lemonade and a nap-ready, wiggly baby while trying to keep four new names straight. (I’m abnormally good with faces but adversely awful with names.) A homeless woman walked up, put her change down on the table without hesitation, and walked away with a cup of lemonade in hand and a smile on her face. My mind was a thousand different places, but present enough to absorb that brief moment.
Most quick-bread, muffin, and batter recipes advise stirring together dry ingredients (flour) and wet ingredients until “just combined”. That’s a loaded phrase that shouldn’t be overlooked. Overmixing can yield a tough, dense crumb. The more you work the flour, the more the gluten develops. Reserve that method for yeasted breads. Fight your intuition, and stir until just combined, borderline undermixed.
Five years ago, I married my best friend. We left our homes and moved to Chicago where he began graduate school. A couple months in to the journey, I started this space. He was working and studying all the time. I quickly learned a weekend outlet was necessary for me to survive blips of boredom, and cleaning the condo wasn’t cutting it. Read more