Banana Bread Weather


It got a little cold again, and rainy, that's great weather for a castle. Sometimes a rainy day is a stone cold drag, but sometimes when you're already feeling kind of low, it can be nice to get a little confirmation from the atmosphere. I stayed in and opened the windows a little, just for the sound of the rain. I got under a blanket, and drank tea, and looked at zines, and took a bath, and all the nice things I could think of for a rainy day. I noticed some bananas going brown so I made banana bread, it was easy.

I didn't have baking soda so I doubled up on baking powder (as noted) and it was fine. "Toothpick clean" means you poke a toothpick into it and then pull it out, and the toothpick doesn't have wet bits stuck to it. To make this eggless I'd switch out the 2 eggs with 1 more banana, that's an old vegan baking trick.

You can put in nuts if you like, I put in chocolate chunks. I stirred them in during the final mixdown, and I didn't even include it in the recipe because even in a note to self, I like to leave room for the holy spirit. If you don't have chocolate chunks, chocolate chips will suffice, and in fact anything you think might be nice to stir in, go for it. But if you're going to the store for this one, get the chunks, not the chips. Chunks are like chips but they're bigger, and for this recipe I think the difference really pays off.

I don't know when chunks were unleashed on the marketplace, but I remember seeing them in the store for the first time as a kid-- I had treated the size of the standard chocolate chip as something eternal and inviolable, like the minute or the inch, and seeing this other size suddenly available, I couldn't believe it. I even got a little mad, the way a child gets mad at the world for not conforming to an internal model. But then almost immediately I was happy, even overjoyed. I was happy to learn that mine is not the world where I can only wish for larger chocolate chips-- my world is chocolate chunks exist world.

A pound of chocolate chips and a pound of chocolate chunks have the same amount of chocolate in them, exactly and unerringly. I know this. Nonetheless I urge you to opt for the chunks.

I got this recipe from a website (sans chunks) and tested it once, then copied it into my cooking notebook, where I collect the recipes that worked so I don't have to look for them online again. Having them in the notebook is nice-- you can note improvements or substitutions you made, or leave a date stamp for every time you made a particular recipe. It makes the whole process of cooking feel like an experiment, which is psychologically helpful to me, and it inspires me to try new recipes, because having a notebook with only 2 recipes in it is embarassing.

Oh yeah, and regarding the notebook itself, that's something special too. It's a standard size composition notebook with a cardstock cover but what makes it special is that the pages are unlined- totally blank. I've been looking for this exact notebook for pretty much my entire life. The lined version is available in any drug store in the country but I don't like lined notebooks, I want to have the whole page open. Structureless, like a sketchbook, but cheap, like a totally regular notebook. I've honestly looked for this in every drug store I've ever been in, it's been a real grail. I refused (refused!) to believe that it doesn't exist. I guess this is like a reverse chocolate chunk scenario-- this world has a billion kinds of tiny bugs and high heeled shoes and off-brand Dr Peppers but I can't get this one stupid notebook without lines?

Well anyway I did finally find it, as you can see. I got it online. I had to buy 50 of them but it was worth it. I guess when it's a turn down day it's nice to focus on these kinds of things- the blank notebook, the chocolate chunks; the small, everyday, and rare. Things that don't have to exist, but they do, without reason or measure, just because someone wanted to try it some other way.

Serving suggestion for the banana bread is to fry a slice in the pan to warm it up, then put butter on it. That's how we do it on a rainy day in the castle.

links / misc

  • Tom Bubul made a cool music mix for his show in the grand ballroom, so if you haven't hung out with his show since the opening, or if you're like "what show / who's Tom", well here's a premium call to go click around in there. The grand ballroom is on the second floor of the castle, and to play the tunes you have to click on the first-generation iPod plugged into a Peavey practice amp. Sorry the playback system is kind of inelegant Tom, I didn't want to run a bunch of wires all over the place. The stairs are here: [link] and the grand ballroom is on the second floor.

  • OK honestly I'm probably not going to use 50 of these blank notebooks so if an unruled composition notebook is your grail as well, hit me up. Let's sayyyy 4 books $10 postpaid to the USA? The books are a standard size 9 3/4" tall x 7 1/2" wide and the paper is "whatever", it's the crappy paper these things are made of. Leave the money in the temple and be sure to include your address in the note. :) [link]

  • Oh yeah and sorry I didn't get a post out last week! Had to take a lil break.