Monday, October 25, 2010

Social networking and other things

I didn't publish a link to last week's IHE blog post; it was a little frivolous, so I didn't bother. And then, somewhat weirdly (I thought) the comments exploded. Who knew feelings ran so high about academics' work wear?

This week I saw The Social Network and spent the weekend with Mariah. Here's what I thought about that.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Fall Baking

I took last week off from the Mama, PhD blog--I'd had a busy weekend and needed to catch up. But this week I'm on fall break, and I'm spending as much of it baking as I can. So this week I'm reposting the recipe for beet cake that's down below. And, since that feels like it's not really a post, here's another recipe: sweet potato molasses muffins. This recipe is adapted from one I found on; I haven't tried the original, but this adaptation (combining two different comments on the original) is pretty tasty:

Preheat the oven to 400F. Butter (or spray) a 12-cup muffin tin or a 6-cup large muffin tin.

Bake a sweet potato until soft, then scrape out the flesh and mash it with a fork. You'll need one cup of the puree. I recommend baking several and keeping the puree in the fridge so you can make lots of muffins, or add it to soup, or cake, or whatever else you think of.

Now, the recipe:

1 cup sweet potato puree
1/4 cup molasses
1/4 cup agave nectar (honey might also work here)
2 eggs
1/2 cup plain yogurt or buttermilk
3 tablespoons melted butter or vegetable oil

Whisk above ingredients together in a large bowl. Then add:

1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 cup oat bran
3 tablespoons flax seed meal
1 tablespoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon salt

Mix the dry ingredients gently into the wet, stirring only until everything is moist--don't overmix, but make sure you don't leave any lumps of flour or baking soda, either--those are nasty!

Scoop into muffin tins--this makes 6 large muffins or 12 (maybe only 11) small ones. Bake 18-20 minutes, maybe another minute or two if you're using the large muffin tin.

These are not very sweet muffins but they are light and tasty. Next time around I'm considering getting some corn meal in there and leaving out the spices to make sweet potato corn muffins--yum!