With everyone around me falling ill including myself, there really hasn't been anything interesting going on food-wise or otherwise. And I do so dislike cloudy winter days: they make me plummet into the gloomiest of moods right away.
Our apartment doesn't get a lot of bright sunlight. At least the living area, where we spend our entire day, doesn't. And so, on cloudy days, it gets dark and oppressive indoors. And that makes me crabby. Add to that picture: whiny kids. And the beginning of a much-too-long Spring Break for my Kindergartner.
Playing Florence Nightingale to 2 little children and a grown up man can make anyone crazy. However, I do suppose I should get their perspective on it at as well since I don't have the most charming bedside manner when I'm unwell.
In order to retain my sanity, I've taken a week-long hiatus. I've been sleeping till noon with the kids, reading a lot, thinking a lot and watching old movies. I haven't cooked or cleaned or lifted a finger to do anything else that needs to be done & have laid all anal-retentive tendencies to rest while I get through this phase. Which will be over as soon as we have that first, completely sunny day!
Since I didn't cook or bake, there's nothing blog-worthy to post. However, I dug out an old photo of something I will be making tomorrow. I won't get any good photos under fluorescent light in the dark and gloomy kitchen, so this old one will have to do.
I just didn't want to take too long a break from blogging when I've just managed to start and who knew Facebook-addiction can be cured by blogging? ;-)
So, here's what I'm going to make tomorrow: Jessica Seinfeld's Blueberry Oatmeal bars.
Non-stick cooking spray
2 cups old-fashioned Oats
1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
3/4 cup trans-fat free soft-tub margarine spread, chilled
1 cup low sugar blueberry preserves
1/2 cup spinach puree
Preheat oven to 375F. Coat an 8x8 inch pan with cooking spray.
In a large bowl, combine all the dry ingredients and vanilla and stir to mix well.
Add the margarine and cut it into the dry ingredients with two knives until the mixture resembles coarse meal and is no longer powdery. Do not over-mix: bits of the margarine should still be visible.
Set aside half of the oat mixture; press the rest firmly into the pan. Bake until slightly browned along the edges, 13 to 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, mix the preserves with the spinach puree in a small bowl.
Spread the blueberry mixture over the partially baked oat layer, then sprinkle with the remaining oat mixture. Bake until the topping is slightly brown, 20 - 25 minutes.
Set on a rack to cool completely before cutting into 12 bars.
(Note: when I took this photo, I had used quick cooking oats in place of old-fashioned (I think I had run out of the latter), which is why the bars look crumbly and mushy. But otherwise, they were pretty darn good and you can't taste the spinach at all. Not even a trace.)