March, 2014…repost

I was digging around in the blog here for an Irish Soda Bread recipe that I couldn’t locate in my recipe booklet and was able to find it HERE.  I also found another  post from March 2014 that I really liked and am re-posting.  I noticed that I certainly posted a lot more back then, and the content was varied but more about being outside, running, the mountains and less about Mae!  She has taken over my life!  The other thing I like about this particular post is the terrific shot of my husband up on the ridge (taken by his friend J. Leeper).

First, Mae this week…it’s been very gloomy, but we are getting out on the hill!

Read on for a look back at March, 2014….


I have been listening to Elvis Costello today.  Actually JUST one song.  And I have to say that there’s nothing funny about peace, love and understanding.  Yet, they can all be quite elusive. The tiny frustrations of every day life that build up, world events that are terrible and confusing , distance between you and your loved ones, both  physical and emotional, everything seems to work against us finding peace, love and understanding.   I like to think that maybe they are easier to find in the mountains.  Carving turns in deep powder under a blue sky is peace.  It’s the FLOW that Mihaly Csikzentmihaly speaks about in his book.  Running down a mountain trail through the springtime mud, jumping over puddles and laughing like a ten year old…feels like love!  To be in the mountains, seems to bring an understanding of our place in the world, seems to put everything in perspective.  If nothing else, it sure makes for some fabulous days, light in the darkness of insanity?   Image


Monday Things

My Mother’s Day flowers are wilting as I type but that’s ok; it was a wonderful day!  Grilled fish tacos, a family walk up the hill through town and a Black Forest cake from the local bakery.  It’s become our go to cake for every  occasion (like birthdays) and sometimes we make up occasions….

In case you weren’t aware of this fact, it’s American Craft Beer Week! (no I didn’t make it up).   I am going to celebrate with one of my favorite local craft beers from Two Beers Brewing Co. in Seattle, the EVO IPA.  It was the IPA that made me a believer in the whole IPA thing.  I finally GET IT!

And last on my list this Monday….I am incredibly tired of eating the same old healthy grain cluster stuff that I have eaten for what seems like forever (okay, just for a few months).  It’s not that it isn’t delicious but I am just burned out on it.  So, I made my own granola!  It’s a delicious recipe from Barefoot Contessa, Back to Basics by Ina Garten.  I have 6 or 7 of her cook books and I love them.  This recipe is fairly simple, the ingredients are easy to find and it tastes really great.  it also ends up being about half the price of the brand I buy.  It’s such a 70’s thing to do! Seriously, I actually remember the first time I ever had home made granola and it was 1972.  Enjoy your week!  Run strong, eat well, drink some craft beer~


Mary Alice’s Irish Soda Bread

Well, I am just a home cook.  And my food photography skills are WEAK.  But I am celebrating my Irish heritage  (a  quarter Irish on my mom’s mom’s side of the family)   and wanted to share this Irish Soda Bread recipe with you.  I lost the original , written recipe  years ago.  I tried others but they never seemed “right”.  I got the original from a woman who was a family friend, and someone whom I always considered to be VERY Irish!    She was a lovely woman,  and had those fabulous Irish eyes, smiling always.  My sister mentioned that the original recipe had a shot of Jameson’s Irish Whiskey in it….I’m not sure about that!  Maybe next time I will add the whiskey….

Preheat oven to 350 degrees, grease a large round oven safe bowl .   (I’ve always used a casserole dish)

3 cups flour

1 teaspoon salt

4 teaspoons baking powder (yes, I did say powder)**  yikes!  Edited 2/25/15 as it said tablespoons..oh my!

about 1/4 cup sugar, plus  some to sprinkle on top

2 tablespoons caraway seeds

1 cup raisins

About 1 cup buttermilk

4 tablespoons butter (half a stick), melted

Mix the dry ingredients well.   Stir in the caraway seeds and raisins.  Add the buttermilk and the melted butter and stir until all ingredients are moist.  You may need to add a splash more milk.  (It should be moist but  not sloppy)  Turn into the buttered dish and cut an “x” on top.  Sprinkle with a bit of sugar.  Cook for  approximately 45 mins but check it at 40 mins.  Top should be just  golden and a knife inserted should come  out clean   (if it’s clean to start with?)   I let it cool slightly and then empty it out onto a plate.  Have a chunk  (or a slice)  plain or with butter.   Enjoy!  And let me know what you think!