1. Baking and cooking (both are relaxing to me)
2. Chillin’ with the Hubs and R2D2
3. Nighttime snowfalls
4. Family: I luff you all, my lovelies
5. Christmastime – that period between Thanksgiving and Christmas is just so lovely!
2. Losing an eye or a finger (seriously, big fears of mine)
3. Losing someone I love
4. Since we bought the house – something happening so we struggle financially
5. I’m what you’d call a “nervous flyer” – I do it (because honestly, in this day and age, you can’t not fly), but I do it with clammy hands. Hurtling through the air in a metal tube is just not my idea of fun, sorry.
1. Home decorating
2. Rock Chalk Jayhawk!
3. Hanging out (cyber-style or in real life) with the RB gals
5. Baking baking baking :)
5 Surprising Facts
1. I cannot make decent pie crust to save my life.
2. I am allergic to scallops.
3. I love going to new hair stylists, just because they generally fawn all over my hair (it's boring mouse brown, but also very thick, soft, and shiny).
4. I played the french horn in junior high.
5. Remember how my work was opening a time capsule left by the Beanie Weenie factory? Well, we had this huge company unveiling of the canisters... and they were empty. Empty! It was like a giant practical joke.
Now, try this lovely grown-up cake. Super delicious, and healthy too! That sweet cherry wine reduction is just divine.
Cherry-Almond Upside Down Cake
(from Cooking Light, June 2005)
1 1/4 c. sugar, divided
1/4 c. dry red wine
2 lbs. dark sweet cherries, pitted (I used frozen, and thawed them overnight in the fridge)
1 tsp. fresh lemon juice
3/4 c. whole blanched almonds, toasted
2 large eggs
2 large egg whites
1 c. all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. salt
Preheat oven to 375 F.
Combine 1/4 cup sugar and wine in a large saucepan over low heat; stir until sugar dissolves.
Increase heat to medium-high; bring to a boil. Stir in cherries. Reduce heat to low, and cook 5 minutes or until cherries just begin to soften, stirring frequently. Remove cherries from pan with a slotted spoon, reserving liquid in pan. Place cherries in a bowl; stir in lemon juice. Arrange cherries in an even layer in bottom of a 9-inch square baking pan coated with cooking spray.
Cook wine mixture over medium-high heat 3 minutes or until reduced to 1/4 cup. Remove from heat; drizzle over cherries in prepared pan.
Place almonds and 2 tablespoons sugar in a food processor; process until finely ground (do not process to a paste).
Place eggs and egg whites in a large bowl. Beat with a mixer at high speed until foamy; slowly add remaining 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar. Beat until thick and lemon-colored (about 2 minutes).
Lightly spoon flour into a dry measuring cup; level with a knife. Combine flour and salt.
Gradually sift flour mixture over egg mixture; fold in. Fold in ground almond mixture. Carefully spoon batter over cherries in prepared pan. Bake at 375° for 30 minutes or until golden brown. Cool in pan on a wire rack 15 minutes. Place a plate upside down on top of cake; invert onto plate.