mercredi 21 mars 2007

How I pack. (Quick answer: not effectively at all.)

For the several days leading up to a trip (the number of days beforehand depends on the duration of the trip - if it's only a weekend, then this process generally starts the day before, if longer, it can start up to a week preceding date of departure), I dump everything I think I might need into a pile in the center of my living room. I'll walk into my bathroom to brush my teeth, espy a bottle of something (conditioner, lotion, who knows what), and add it to the growing pile. I'll walk into my closet (yes, I have a walk-in closet, are you jealous?) to put on makeup, and find some article of clothing that looks like it'll travel well and throw it into my living room. Needless to say, my apartment is somewhat of a haphazard mess right now, with bikinis and books and and sweaters and assorted toiletries littering the ground.

So I'll be gone for a bit (until April! Yay!) and while I'll definitely have internet access in Boston, and reportedly our B&B in Cancun has wireless as well - really, there'll be other things to do than to sit at my computer and procrastinate on work. Because HAHA, no work!

In the meantime, you can attempt these muffins. I say attempt, because while they smelled good and looked good - they only tasted okay, and stuck horribly to the muffin tin liners. I'm not quite sure where I messed up, but mess up somewhere I did (unless the recipe is just faulty, which I like to think is actually the case). Note: do NOT substitute the Meyer lemons with regular ones, it just won't work as well (that's not where I messed up, by the way). I'd made them with the intent of adding a bit of sunshine to the dreary LA weather we've been having, but this time, appearances were better than reality.

But that's okay, because I will be on the beach enjoying a drink this time tomorrow. Can't wait!


Meyer lemon muffins
recipe from the LA Times

2 cups flour
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar, divided
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
3 Meyer lemons, divided
2 eggs
1 cup milk
1/2 cup butter, melted
1/2 teaspoon Ceylon cinnamon (can substitute with 1/8 teaspoon regular ground cassia cinnamon)

1. Heat the oven to 400 degrees. Combine the flour, 1 cup sugar, the baking soda and salt in a large mixing bowl. Set aside.

2. Cut two lemons into 1-inch pieces. (You should also probably take out the seeds at this point.) Put them in a blender and pulse until the lemon is finely chopped. In a small bowl, lightly beat the eggs. Add the milk, butter and chopped lemon. Stir.

3. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and pour in the lemon mixture. Stir just until all ingredients are moistened.

4. Spoon the batter into well-buttered cups of muffin pans, filling each half full. (I filled each 2/3rds full - it worked better.)

5. Combine the remaining 2 tablespoons sugar and the cinnamon. Sprinkle about one-fourth teaspoon over each muffin. Cut the remaining lemon into 9 paper-thin slices; cut each slice in half. Top each muffin with half a slice of lemon.

6. Bake about 20 minutes, until golden brown. Run a small spatula or knife around each of the muffins to loosen, remove from the pan and cool on a wire rack. Serve warm.