Right now I'm sitting at the Northern Perks coffee shop in Lakewood, Wisconsin. It's really cute. They have good coffee. And they have internet. Besides the library I think it may be one of the only places up here that gets the internet.
There are some people around me. They are older folks. They're looking at me like I've been dropped here from some future planet. The combo of my iphone and my mac just must be a little too much.
Oh wait. This lady just walked in. I'd even classify her as an old folk. She just asked the barista (do they call themselves that up here?) Anyways, she just asked the girl behind the counter (more appropriate term I think), "I have a question about how you get hooked up to your internet connection!"
So yes, there, I'm not the only one. My cousin Sarah is in the back too. She's skyping with a friend. The old folk would probably faint if they saw that.
It's just because we're up north. It's pretty much the simple life up here. People don't email or text. They go to Carla's for breakfast and get the morning scoop from the locals while they're enjoying their 10 cent cup of coffee. I really like that kind of lifestyle. And here I am breaking the rules. Oh well. I promise I will go back to the cabin right after this and enjoy the day laying on the pier soaking up the sun. I won't touch my computer again for days.
But until then, I wanted to give you all a little something to enjoy. Last week I was home at my mom's. Remember those orange counter tops I told you about? Well we baked on them. Sure did. Baked some really great bread and I wanted to share. You should make this bread. For real, not even joking.
6 ounces unsalted butter, melted and browned to just over 1/2 cup of butter
2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 cup plain yogurt (any fat content) or buttermilk
1 1/4 cup mashed banana (from about 3 medium bananas)
1/2 cup diced strawberries plus 1 strawberry very thinly sliced, for topping
Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Butter will begin to foam and crackle as it melts. When the crackling subsides, the butter will begin to brown. Swirl the pan as the butter cooks. When the butter browns and begins to smell nutty, remove the pan from the flame and transfer the butter to a small bowl. Taking the butter out of the hot saucepan will stop the butter from overcooking and burning. Set aside to cool.
(I will confess that I burned the butter the first time, so be careful and don't leave it on too long!)
In a large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.
In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs, vanilla extract, and yogurt or buttermilk. Whisk in the mashed bananas. When butter has cooled, whisk in the browned butter.
Add the wet ingredients, all at once to the dry ingredients. Fold together, making sure to scrape the bottom of the bowl to reveal any hidden pockets of flour. Fold in the diced strawberries. Fold together ingredients, but try not to over stir.
Spoon batter into prepared pan and top with thinly sliced strawberries. Bake for 50 minutes to 1 hour, or until a skewer inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean. Remove from the oven and allow to rest in the pan for 15 minutes, before inverting onto a wire rack to cool completely.
Bread will last 4 days, well wrapped at room temperature. This loaf also freezes well.