We had a little bit of a hosting SNAFU this week here on the ol’ Crepes of Wrath. Thanks to some clever maneuvering from my webmaster extraordinare (slash husband), things seem to be up and running as they always were. Thanks for figuring that out, Kramer! Without you I’d probably still be on hold with someone. Anyway, that’s the reason for this week’s lack of posts. We had a great weekend, though! Things only went to hell blog-wise on Monday morning (of course). Friday night, Kramer and I headed to Videology for happy hour and unexpected free nachos! What? They were the best free nachos that I’ve ever had. They were made infinitely more delicious by the Mario Brothers movie that was playing at the bar. After drinks, we saw Bad Words at Nitehawk, which was hilarious. Saturday, I woke up early to get my hair done while Kramer went for a run (over achiever), then we met up with some friends at The Rookery for sunny Saturday afternoon cocktails. I may have also ordered a side of bacon to go with my Pimms cup. That’s a thing now. The weather was just so perfect that I couldn’t resist giving in to any and all temptations. Everyone had the same idea on Saturday, of course. New York hasn’t seen lovely sunny weather in so long (especially on a weekend) that all of the outdoor drinking areas were packed, but we luckily scored a table and soaked up the rays and 60 degree weather. We sat there for a few hours, just enjoying not having to wear a heavy coat, then we went next door to Union Pizza Works for some coal oven pizza, both of which had mushrooms because that’s how you turn a good day into a great day.
After we finished the last of our on-tap Peroni, we continued on our way in search of another bar, preferably a quiet, not crowded one where we could roam free. We stumbled upon The Johnson’s, which an offshoot of a popular dive on the Lower East Side, although this new spot is anything but. You can tell it’s new because it is ~so clean~ (rare a find so it felt luxurious). It had an adorable little outdoor patio area with fun swing chairs and big benches, plus $5 cocktails and $2 Lionshead beers. You really can’t go wrong with that. We continued on our merry way there, until we were all tired and decided to go back to our friend Morgan’s place before we realized, yes, we are incredibly tired, and ended up at home by 8pm. Kramer and I ordered sandwiches, watched Hannibal, and fell asleep by 10pm. What a perfect Saturday. On Sunday, Kramer and I slept in, then met with our friends Valerie and Tom, and her sister, brother-in-law, niece and nephew for a fantastic Mexican feast at Casa Enrique in Long Island City. I had lengua tacos (of course), plenty of chips and guac, and some of Tom’s crab ceviche, alongside a margarita or two. I was stuffed, but I probably could have had another taco. We went back to Tom and Val’s afterward, where the kids decorated cupcakes that Valerie had made, and where Kramer and I ate said cupcakes. They are always wonderful hosts, making sure that Kramer and I are full of food and drink and letting us endlessly play with their dog, Mia. I convinced everyone that we should watch John Mulaney’s New in Town, and we all ate some more Mexican food and laughed our asses off until it was time to go home. It was an incredible weekend and I can’t believe it’s already Thursday and almost time for another one!
I feel like I am forever making different kinds of banana bread, but what about peanut butter? Poor, neglected peanut butter. The truth is that I bake quite often for my office, but there are some people there who are allergic to nuts, peanuts especially, so I tend to steer clear of those recipes for fear of putting someone into anaphylactic shock. For those reasons, the peanuts stay at home. But Kramer and I are peanut butter fiends. I eat peanut butter almost once a day, and does does he. We stir it into our oatmeal, have it on toast, or sometimes I just spoon a couple of tablespoons of it into a bowl with sliced banana and honey. It’s my power food and I would be lost without it. I decided to go against the grain one afternoon and make a little peanut butter snack for just Kramer and me. I saw how The Tough Cookie decorated her peanut butter cake with slivers of sliced apples, and it was so pretty that I couldn’t resist doing the same thing myself. This cake is incredibly peanut butter-y, with a great texture from the crunchy peanut butter and a lovely moist crumb. It’s definitely more of a cake than a bread, but I’m fine with that. After Kramer and I ate a quarter of this loaf, I decided to freeze it (for our own good). When I pulled it out again for a snack a week later, it was even better and more flavorful after having thawed out on the counter. The recipe would probably make good muffins, too, and I could see the sliced apples being beautiful if twirled into little roses or circles on muffins. Loaf or muffin, give this recipe a try for the peanut butter fanatics in your life.
Mix together your batter.
Then pour it into your prepared pan (say that five times fast).
Then arrange your apples in a line along the batter.
Allow to cool, then slice and serve. There’s nothing wrong with enjoying this cake alongside a little whipped cream, either.
- 1¼ cup all-purpose flour
- 1½ teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ cup unsalted butter, cubed and at room temperature
- 1 cup dark brown sugar
- 2 eggs, room temperature
- ¾ cup peanut butter (crunchy preferred, as always)
- ½ teaspoon almond extract
- ¼ cup whole milk
- 1 large apple, thinly sliced
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. In a medium bowl, whisk together your flour, baking powder and cinnamon and set aside. In the bowl of your mixer, beat together the butter and sugar until well creamed, at least 3 minutes. Add in the eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition, then add in the peanut butter and almond extract. Mix until combined. Add in the milk and mix until combined. Gradually add in the flour mixture, mixing until just moistened and scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.
- Line a 9x5-inch loaf pan with parchment paper and butter/grease well. Spoon the batter carefully into the pan, and smooth the top. The batter will be thick - don't worry! Arrange your sliced apples in a pattern of your choice over the top of the batter, pressing the apples down about halfway down into the batter.
- Bake for 60 minutes or so, until set. If the cake looks like it is browning a bit too much, just place a protective cover of foil over the top and let it continue baking. Allow the cake to cool before slicing and serving. This will keep well in an airtight container for up to 4 days. The cake also freezes well - I froze half of it and thawed it out at a later date to rave reviews.