I’m not sure if anyone Irish will take issue with me for this bread, but I like to tinker. Consider authenticity thrown out the window with this one.
I’ve taken out the raisins and seeds and put in chocolate chips and cocoa. As a result, I’m a very happy girl right now.
The bread itself isn’t sweet (except for the chocolate chips here and there), but there’s a lovely chocolate flavor throughout that makes this quite a wonderful St. Patrick’s Day snack!
Now that the Oscars are over, can I get in on the controversy? Hey, better late than never.
Back in the day, I got really excited about the Oscars. Hey, I was a kid. I didn’t overthink the situation. All I knew was that the fashion was fun and that for a few hours, I could watch celebrities hobnobbing and performing. It was just a fun TV night.
As you know by now, this year things got really heated. There’s no doubt that equal representation in Hollywood (in the movies themselves or at the awards shows) has not yet been achieved, and I am duly upset about it. But there’s something else about all awards shows that bothers me.
Why do we give actors so much screen time for recognition? I mean, we’re talking endless hours of airtime, media coverage, and money that gets poured into awarding people who have made it in the television and film industry. They’re all talented, so I’m not trying to hate on their craft. But why are they the heroes? Why do they get all those moments in the sun?
People risk their lives every day (or actually give up their lives) to save humanity, and I don’t see them being recognized or rewarded. Heck, they’re not even paid that well. Instead, people who pretend to be heroes, who play the part, get all the credit. It’s so much more glamorous to play a firefighter who dies to save others than to actually be one.
The real heroes have been taught not to expect appreciation as a matter of course, and that’s the way it is. But the way we celebrate Hollywood is positively obscene. Do you know about the gift bags that Oscar nominees receive? Some publications have estimated the worth of these gift bags to be around $200,000 each. Really? Is that necessary?
And that doesn’t include the expense of the show itself, or the parties, or the fashion, or the salary bumps that the world’s most successful and well-paid actors receive once they win that gold statuette. I’m not all about the money (I did go into teaching, after all), but that’s just insult to injury when you consider how much time and attention is spent on rewarding people in show business.
Okay, rant concluded. Deep breath. Soda bread.
Every year on St. Patrick’s, someone brings a soda bread into the office. It’s the standard issue soda bread, which has a lovely flavor and texture and goes perfectly with butter. I enjoy it, to a point. But man…those caraway seeds. Not my thing.
What I’ve done here is probably super not okay with traditional St. Patrick’s Day revelers, so I apologize. But I had to. The bread gets a shot of cocoa and some chocolate chips. And it’s not hard to put together at all. The video is the proof!
This bread is simple to make and accessible. Nothing fancy going on here! Nope, we save that for the Oscars. They can have the overdone display of exclusion and artificial emotion. I’ll keep it real with the baking!
I fulfill many roles in life: wife, mother, teacher, everlasting learner.
This site is dedicated to one role that expresses my creativity in ways that I find consistently challenging and rewarding: baker.
Inventing new ways to enhance food, especially if that food involves chocolate or peanut butter (or both!), is a passion of mine. I look forward to sharing my ideas with you.
It’s 100 degrees out and we’re trapped in the house. Who wants to turn the oven on?
Well, I do. I know, I know. No-bake treats are all the rage this time of year, but heck, I like to bake. A baker’s gonna bake. That’s how it goes. That’s why somebody smart invented air conditioning.
Every weekend, I find myself staring at tired bananas. They call to me, and sometimes I ignore them. That’s usually when I’m just as tired as they are. But sometimes I cut them up and freeze them for smoothies that I never really make, and that’s an effort right there. But if I’m feeling really energetic and serious, I’ll bake them into something. And this double chocolate chunk banana bread is probably one of the best ways ever to use those bananas!
Ahhhh…TGIF. Almost. Before I breeze through the last day of the week, it’s time to make some serious bread.
Challah, that is.
Challah is too awesome to fly so much under the radar. It’s traditionally an egg bread made with white flour and sugar, kind of like brioche. It makes amazing French toast. There are also water versions, calling for no egg, as well as challahs filled with anything from raisins to chocolate chips.
And lately, whole wheat challah has begun to pop up in bakeries with more frequency, though it’s often put down by challah traditionalists, and who can blame them? Challah is an indulgence, a bread so good that spreading butter or jam on a slice can actually take away from the yeasty, fresh-out-of-the-oven perfection of the bread itself.
I was pretty hestitant to give the whole wheat thing a try. Why fix what ain’t broke? But in a world where whole grains are healthier and white bread is just an occasional indulgence, I wanted to have my challah and eat it too.
Breakfast is such a huge motivator in my life. I don’t let myself eat until after my workout. It’s good to have something to work toward!
Does that work for everyone? Nope. My friend is more of an evening exerciser. By that time, I am done and a half. Can barely move, except to lift the fork to my mouth to eat dessert. That’s my workout later in the day!
When you want a good breakfast treat that is homemade but easy, I recommend turning to refrigerated biscuits. Not to make biscuits with, silly. To make something far more fun. This salted caramel pecan pastry ring is delicious and perfect for the morning, not to mention pretty quick to put together. It takes the usual five minutes or so!