Last night, around 6 PM, the sky opened up and poured buckets of rain onto the streets of Seattle. The thunder boomed overhead and echoed across the tall buildings downtown, over to Elliott Bay and it’s sprinkling of pretty boats and ferries. Despite what everyone thinks, it rarely really RAINS here. Sure, it drizzles. Yeah, it’s gray and glum in the winter. But the heavens prefer to tease us with low hanging clouds rather than really deliver the goods.
And you know something? I love the rain. It’s cleansing, and every city needs a good bath once in awhile. As previously mentioned in my Pumpkin post, I love to embrace the crappy weather and just surrender to the chokehold of coziness. It’s so much more pleasant that complaining about it (which doesn’t bring the sunshine, by the way).
So, I walked home in the rain, my bouncy curls becoming wet strands of sadness, and I slipped into something comfy, lit every candle I own, and started to cook.
I made a batch of split pea soup, a loaf of Irish Soda bread and a hot, bubbly peach, pear, blueberry cobbler.
The house smelled like a tiny little cottage in the woods, inhabited by seven dwarfs and a raven-haired princess. It was pretty great. And, as I entered the office this morning, coffee in hand and hair freshly curled, I mused to myself, holy cake flour! I could very well be the human embodiment of the Virgin Mary! Or at least, a real Twenty First Century Fox!
And then I proceeded to spill the contents of my mug onto my dress and boots and thought, maybe not.
It was easy, and you should try it.
Little Pink Devotional’s Split Pea Soup
- 1 bag of split peas, rinsed and picked through
- Medium white or yellow onion, chopped
- 2-3 big carrots, peeled and chopped in coins
- 2-3 celery stalks, chopped
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 tsp Sea Salt
- White pepper to taste
- Pinch of allspice
- 1 vegetable boullion cube or 8 cups of vegetable broth
- Drizzle of olive or vegetable oil
Get out your big soup pot and drizzle in your oil over medium heat. Add the onion, celery and carrots and cover it until the carrots are barely tender, about 10 minutes, stirring every few minutes. Throw in the peas, seasonings and liquid- 8 cups of water and a veggie bouillion cube or 8 cups of veggie broth. If you’re doing a cube, take some of the water, heat it and dissolve the cube first. Bring your soup to a boil, stir it up, then lower the heat, let the mofo simmer while you make your bread. Be sure to stir it up and scrape the bottom often so it doesn’t burn. After about 30 minutes, the peas will soften and your soup will look like bright green, beautiful baby food. You can get fancy and add a dollop of creme fraiche and some chives, or you can throw it in your Worlds Best Grandpa mug and eat it while watching Full House re-runs. Do as you wish.
P.S. It’s vegan, but no one else needs to know.
Little Pink Devotional’s Irish Soda Bread
- 4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 T baking powder
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 6 T cold butter or marg
- 1 1/2 c buttermilk*
Preheat oven to 350. Grease a cookie sheet. Add all dry ingredients to a large bowl and mix well. With a pastry blender, cut in the cold butter until mixture looks like little crumbs. If you don’t have a pastry blender, just use a fork or your hands. Add the buttermilk and stir just until it’s all wet. Over blending will turn your bread into a hockey puck. Now comes the fun part. Lightly coat your countertop and hands with flour. Take your dough and knead it 8 times on the countertop. Isn’t dough great? I want to start a dough club, where all we do is make dough, eat it off our fingers and then go home. Anyway. Shape your dough into a rough, cute dough ball. Sprinkle with a little flour. With a serrated knife, make a big badass “X” on the top of the dough, about 1/4 inch deep. Put it on your cookie sheet and pop it in the oven for about 60 minutes. When it’s done, put your loaf on a cooling rack and let it hang out while you clean up and set the table and stuff. This is so good hot, slathered in butter or honey or jam or lemon curd or slices of parmesan cheese or Nutella or whatever.
*If you don’t have buttermilk (which, I never do) just take 1 T of apple cider vinegar or lemon juice and add milk to measure.
Now I’m too hungry to post the cobbler recipe. So, just enjoy your soup and bread and go to Dairy Queen later or something.