brown butter banana bread with bourbon and walnuts

Friday, April 11, 2014

Hello Lovelies.

Firstly, a heart-felt thank you for all the support following my last post. I did not expect the giant outpouring of love that I received. It touched me so much. I can't believe how many friends, friends-of-friends, and people I don't even know reached out to share how they're dealing with (or have dealt with) fertility stuff. We all cope in silence to some degree (on all fronts, not just when baby-making) and yet this week reminded me how interconnected we truly are. Here's to remembering that when we need it the most.

This week has been a whirlwind of life: doctor's appointments, errand running, tax preparation, external hard drive set-up, auditions, soup making, quilt making, car washing, wine drinking, dog hugs, coffee with friends, hikes, laughs, Pilates classes, pottery classes, teaching, and as many Game of Thrones episodes I could stay awake for. In the middle of it all, I had a TV appearance that amounted to maybe 7 whole seconds of screen time.

Eight months ago when I shot the thing, I had one of the most fun days I've ever had on set. I played a trashy, horrible girl from Queens who had bad hair, nazi tattoos and fake teeth. I was just in one scene but man, I had a blast. I laughed all day with the cast and crew and desperately tried not to laugh when the scene called for me to remove my fake teeth, take after take. (Trust me, that was very difficult.) So when it aired this week and the entire scene was cut down to 7 seconds (and zero dialogue), it stung. Not only was my ego bruised, but it felt like an insult to my experiencelike it meant less. I wanted to tell everyone how awesome it had been and how I had a whole scene originally and how fulfilling it was to shoot. I wanted it to look as funny and wonderful and special as it felt to me that day. And it didn't. It looked like 7 seconds.

Needless to say, it was (yet another) lesson in letting go of what others think (truth: they're not really thinking about it). I have to let the feeling of my experience be the representation of it. Not some external, diminished version that a million TV executives had their hands in. I can't control any of that, nor is it personal.

Ironically, if I *don't* let it go, I'm diminishing my own life this week by making it only about 7 seconds on TV, instead of all the other blessings and wonderful things that went down. Like dog hugs and belly laughs and couch time with DP. And all the love and support I feel from so many of you. Also: banana bread. Banana bread went down. And nobody puts banana bread in a corner.

Brown Butter Banana Bread With Bourbon and Walnuts
makes 1 loaf

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
2 cups all-purpose (or gluten free flour + 1/4 t xanthan gum)
1 t baking soda
1/2 t baking powder
1 t cinnamon
1 t kosher salt
2 large eggs
3 large (or 4 small) really ripe bananas, smashed
1 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/4 cup bourbon whiskey
1 t vanilla extract
1/3 cup sour cream
1 cup chopped walnuts, divided

Preheat oven to 350F and grease a loaf pan. Brown the butter (great tutorial here). Pour into a separate bowl to avoid burning and set aside to cool. In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon and salt. Whisk well and then add the brown sugar, whisking again. In a separate medium bowl, whisk the eggs. Then add the mashed bananas, sour cream, whiskey and vanilla and cooled butter. Mix well. Fold the wet ingredients into the dry until everything is just combined and then fold in 3/4 cup of the nuts, being careful not to over mix. Spread into prepared loaf pan, sprinkle the top with remaining 1/4 cup nuts, and (depending on your oven) bake about 45-60 minutes, or until a tester inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool in the loaf pan for 20 minutes and then turn out onto a rack to cool completely. Bonus points: serve with bourbon-spiked whipped cream!


P.S. Do you guys get these daily Notes From The Universe emails? They are wonderful. Case in point:

Everything in your life right now is awesome. Everything is in its right place, under grace, and whether or not this makes perfect sense yet, one day it will. And the time swiftly approaches when you'll be exceedingly grateful for all that has brought you to this day and contributed to who you've become, because it is exactly that person who is now poised to live as you have always dreamed you would one day live.

Beautiful and apropos, no?

P.P.S. If you like Game of Thrones and also goats ---------------> you'll enjoy this.


  1. I got some great advice once- to worry less what others were thinking about you, because chances are, they're busy thinking about themselves (and what YOU'RE thinking about them). It's always stuck with me that it's not all about ME.
    Love the shot of Lena!

  2. yum! and what a cute little furry face :)


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