Thursday, July 26, 2012

Other People's Food

I'm not sure if my workplace is typical, but it seems to me that it requires an inordinate number of potlucks.  Sometimes we have to bring things; sometimes things are brought to us.  True confession:  my team and I are terrible potluckers.  We sign up for juice, as a group.  It is not only the lazy person's way out, it is cheap.  Once, we let a new girl buy juice and she spent over $20.  On juice! Needless to say, we kicked her out of our little contribution group and she had to start bringing stuff on her own - expensive crap like store bought muffins.  I feel only marginal guilt about bringing next to nothing, because in all honesty, I'll eat next to nothing.  We've covered my fear and loathing of public eggs in the past, but food from questionable kitchens is right up there on the list of stuff I won't eat.  I do not want to eat anything that may have come in contact with your cat's hair, your child's grimy hands or your can't-remember-the-last-time-you-wiped-it kitchen counter.* And on top of my rampant germophobia there's my fear that you** can't cook, so I'm also not eating anything that might not taste good.  Which means that if I am particularly hungry I will hover near where people drop things off so I can see who brought each specific food product.  LABELS people.  Let's get with the program!  Tell me what is in it and who made it for the love of Mike.  This blueberry coffee cake was one such potluck exception, I knew the baker and felt confident her kitchen was clean.  And it was SO good.  I totally stalked potlucks looking for it.  Finally she gave me the recipe.  Which means I could totally make it and be a good potlucker, but that's not really my style.  I'll stick to making it at home and leave the quality baking to someone else.

 *Unless of course, I've just been petting the cat in question and you have a child who calls me Auntie in an adorable little voice and can sing along to Call Me Maybe, but that is a highly specific special case.

**I don't mean you person reading my blog. I'm sure you're a perfectly good cook. Unless you're not, in which case, no offense, but I don't want to eat what you've brought.

adapted rather liberally, the original calls for a brown sugar, chopped pecan and ground cinnamon streusel to be used after you've poured in half the batter and again when you've added all the batter.  I was a) rather unsurprisingly lazy and b) shockingly short of pecans, so I improvised.  Ryan's been calling it "Blueberry Muffin Cake".

1 C butter, softened
1 1/4 C granulated sugara
2 eggs
1 C sour cream
1 t vanilla extract
1 1/2 C all-purpose flour (make that 1/2 C a scant one okay?)
1t baking powder
pinch of salt
1.5 C fresh blueberries
1 T brown sugar
2 t cinnamon
2 T flour

Preheat your oven to 350 F (175 C).  Grease and flour a bundt pan (I used that spray that comes with the flour in it - for when you care enough about your family to coat their food in chemicals).  In your stand mixer, combine the sugar and butter and cream them together until light and fluffy.  Beat in the eggs one at a time (I use the paddle attachment, it's fine).  Then add the vanilla and the sour cream and give it one more good mix.  In a separate bowl, mix the flour and baking powder and salt.  Slowly add it to the mixer and then turn it on until it just incorporates.  Rinse your blueberries and pat them dry.  In another bowl, mix the 2 T of flour, the brown sugar and the cinnamon.  Add the blueberries to this and mix them until coated, it's okay if it doesn't stick perfectly.  Remove the bowl part of your stand mixer, because you'll want to add the berries by hand.  Add them and fold them in gently using a spatula or wooden spoon.  Make sure you get any left over brown sugar or cinnamon that's lurking in your bowl.  Slowly pour all of this into your bundt pan and then pop it into the oven.  Bake for 50-60 minutes or until a knife inserted into the cake comes out clean.  Cool it in the pan on a wire rack and then remove it to a serving plate.  I found this kept very well.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Are you suggesting that I don't wipe my kitchen counter? Shhhh!


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