It is officially awful outside.
And although I’m feeling slightly grumpy (I don’t particularly care for rain/snow/ice/cold), I am trying my best to have a thankful heart. Truth be told, I really do have a lot to be thankful for. But in today, in particular, I am thankful for our happy little house. Our new place is just so cozy (and warm!). Last winter, Nich and I were in a much bigger house that was poorly insulated and had horrible leaky windows. We were always freezing. But our new place is magical. It stays so warm! I hardly have to turn the heat on, and when I do the whole house warms up instantly. We have not had to use our space heater once. I love it. In weather like this, having a warm house is most definitely something to be thankful for.
So, what do you do when you have a happy little house and its cold and miserable outside? Why, you make delicious things, of course. A few days ago, when it was especially horrible outside I decided to bake this fabulous bread. I’d seen the recipe in a recent issue of Food Day (from The Oregonian), and knew I needed to try it. I’m always game to try a quick bread (Its bread, and its quick. Enough said.) and this one caught my eye as it was Mark Bittman’s Whole Wheat Molasses Quick Bread. (There is nothing in that sentence that I don’t like. Done and done.)
The bread is thick, hearty, and satisfying. (Note: most quick breads tend to be much more hearty, due to their lack of yeast and rising time. But, this gives the bread a whole different quality that I’ve come to appreciate about quick breads. This is the kind of bread that ‘sticks to your guts’, as my grandfather would say). The molasses lends a subtle sweetness to the bread that isn’t overpowering or cloying. It is the perfect compliment to soups, salads, and is absolutely sublime when served warm with a little butter.
Mark Bittman’s Whole Wheat Molasses Quick Bread
Makes 1 loaf
Oil or butter for greasing pan
1 2/3 cups buttermilk or plain yogurt
2 1/2 cups (about 12 ounces) whole wheat flour
1/2 cup cornmeal
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup molasses (I used black strap
1. Heat the oven to 325 degrees. Grease an 8-by-4-inch or 9-by 5-inch loaf pan, preferably nonstick.
2. Mix together the dry ingredients. Stir the molasses into the buttermilk or yogurt. Stir the liquid into the dry ingredients (just enough to combine) then pour into the pan. Bake until firm and a toothpick inserted into center comes out clean, 45 minutes to 1 hour. Cool on a rack for 15 minutes before removing from the pan.