The Secret Is Roasting The Bananas

Life is a bit crazy for me at the moment. 

I know you should never talk about your job on your blog for risk of being fired – I’m risking it.

Right before the winter break, I was notified that my position has a major yearly project to do and although up until that point I had never heard of this project, I was behind on meeting every deadline and could I get a move on?  Good times.  I’ve been working on the drafts and edits all weekend and I’m to the point of losing my mind.

Directly in my line of vision was a bunch of bananas gently rotting in the fruit bowl. The only sane thing to do was to get up, walk away from the project, and make my prize-winning* gold medal** Banana Bread.  The secret (but don’t tell anyone) is roasting the bananas – the natural sweet flavour is magnified 199%.

While roasting, the smell is amazing! Coming out of the oven, they don’t look so appetizing.

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They smell better than they look!

 

Roasted Banana Bread Recipe

6 or 7 bananas placed on a foil covered cookie sheet.  Roast for 15 minutes at 350F.  Cool.

1/2 cup of vegetable oil

1/2 cup of applesauce

1 cup of white sugar

1 cup of brown sugar

4 eggs

1/3 cup milk

1 teaspoon vanilla

4 cups of flour

2 teaspoons baking soda

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

1 cup of chocolate chips (optional, but who are we kidding)

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1. Place cooled, peeled bananas in large mixing bowl, add oil, applesauce, sugar(s), eggs, milk and vanilla and mix until well blended

2. Blend in flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.  Add chocolate chips, if desired.

3. Place batter in 2 greased loaf pans.

4. Bake at 350 for 60 minutes (give or take 5 minutes)

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Optional chocolate chips – mixed throughout the batter :-)

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Voila!
PS: Don’t you love my wooden cutting board? My very talented Father-in-law made it for me!! xo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The kitchen smells great, my coffee has been refreshed, and now my break is over.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

*No prizes or medals have been won – but everyone always asks for the recipe!

The Days Are Getting Longer

After two days of non-stop snowing, the clouds departed and the sun came out.

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Anytime the sky is brilliant blue and the sun shining, I feel the need to be out enjoying every moment of sunshine. When will I learn that it can still be COLD even if the sun is out. It's disconcerting to have icicles on one's eyelashes.

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There were lots of others out with the same idea, snow shoeing, cross country skiing and snow mobiling. We haven’t venture into any outdoor winter sports other than enjoying the long walks in the deep freeze. I find it surprisingly difficult to walk in fresh snow as I’m not the most coordinated, so I enjoyed slipping and lurching all over the path.

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With the sun setting, the temperature dropping and my uncoordinated legs going numb – it was time to head home for a hot chocolate. The optimists living here are already celebrating the longer periods of daylight but the pessimists realists would like to point out that today the sun was setting at 4:33PM. I guess it is a small price to pay for the glorious endless days of sunshine in the summer.

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Heartwarming

Happy New Year!

We made it safely home trekking from the green lush promised land back up to the bitter cold north.  It took us three days to drive to our destination but FOUR days to drive home.  The roads were icy, the snow was blowing and the temperature kept dropping the further north we drove. 

Speaking of dropping temperatures, I can’t stop refreshing the weather channel – misery really does love company.  The Instagram shots of outside temperatures in all regions of North America are ghoulishly satisfying.  Did you see that one article that certain regions are currently colder than Mars?  I live for those type of articles.

Yesterday was my first day back at work after the break.  It was the worst kind of Monday: bitter cold with a savage wind chill and snowing.  The door closest to my parking spot was barricaded due to a pipe freezing and then bursting – the water damage is immense.I had to trudge around the building in the bitter cold with the savage chill…uphill……..you get the picture. 

All day long, all I could think about was trudging back around the building in the bitter cold and brushing all of the snow from my vehicle and how I really didn’t want to do it.  Really really didn’t want to do it.

Right at 5:00PM, my husband walked into my office and casually announced that he had driven down to my workplace, cleaned all the snow off my car and the car was warm and ready for me to drive home.

It was the very best ending to my day.

The Cure For Everything

Is Salt – sweat, tears, or the ocean air.

After a fabulous few days of celebrating filled with turkey, chocolate, and lots of coffee – it was time to take a walk.

We took a quick drive out to a former whaling station. It was a perfectly serene coastal winter day.

Decommissioned Wharf

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Barnacles

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This is basically parked outside the owner’s front door.

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It was a very good day

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The View – Day 365

It’s been a year since I posted the first view from my window.

I would have never believed all of the adventures that showed up on my doorstep in 2013.

Including:

1.Driving 450kms in the worst snowstorm I’ve ever seen to meet my sister for the weekend.
2.Two months later, being sent home from work because the river was flooding and the water breached our building.
3.Getting the family up in the middle of the night to watch the northern lights dance across the sky.
4. Enjoying endless summer nights. The sun never fully set – glorious!!

This current adventure will probably make the Top 10 Insane Things We’ve Done In 2013. We had no plans to go back to our hometown for Christmas; however the junior member of the family put on quite a show and listed all of the reasons why she needed to celebrate with her cousins. It’s a shame she can’t be nominated for an Oscar.

This road trip is crazy long. Insanely long. Nut job long. We completed 450kms on Friday night, the 1,000kms yesterday and today we only have 482kms to drive plus a 2-hour ferry ride. Then we’ll turn around and do it all again next week!

However, I’m not complaining at all. The roads have been mostly free of snow and ice. Now that we are in the Canadian tropics, it’s only rain. How I’ve missed the rain AND the salty ocean air. Not to mention the above zero temperatures!!

If you can ride BC Ferries on a gloriously sunny day – it’s 100% pure spectacular.

If you are crossing on a rainy/foggy day – I imagine it’s just like being on a submarine.

Exhibit A

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Beautiful British Columbia!

Winter Solstice

It’s the shortest day but it seems to be lasting forever.

We drove 440 kms yesterday.

Today, our goal is to drive 1,000 kms. We’re booked into a motel with an indoor swimming pool & water slide as well as a 24-hour Starbucks. It’s win/win for everyone.

Still, all things considered, the road trip is going well. Lots of coffee, endless games of Candy Crush and listening to recorded books. The weather/roads are cooperating. All passengers (human & canine) are behaving and Mr. Northern-Town has had no reason to pull over and threaten to sell us to gypsies.

For the majority of the day – the scenery has been just like this:

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With the occasional glimpse of these:

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The Canadian Rockies are gorgeous.

Now it is pitch black and the promise of water slide and hot tub are propelling us onward.

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