Monday, September 8, 2008

Just A Few Things

"During the whole of a dull, dark, and soundless day in the autumn of the year."

I was trying to think of something good to say, to describe my feelings on this beautiful Autumn day, but Poe seems to have summed it up much better than I.

These are the days I love and crave. Give me a cool, crisp, autumn day, throw in some clouds and drizzling rain and a good book and I am in heaven.

I feel blessed as the stifling heat of summer has waned and we are experiencing gray, damp, dreary days. And for a couple of soup-junkies like my daughter and myself, it is sheer heaven.

Yesterday afternoon the temperature dropped, the sky turned gray, and the rain began to drizzle, so I ran into the grocery store to pick up a few things, and spied some bright orange pumpkins as if put out especially for me.

As I proudly wielded on th, my husband rolled his eyes, unsurprised, as it is only two months till Halloween.

On a rainy night with overripe bananas on the counter and a damp chill in the air, it is mandatory that one bake banana bread while watching an old movie on TV. I've tried countless recipes for banana bread, but this one from Joy Of Cooking is a favorite. It has lots of fresh banana flavor without too much fuss and uses only basic ingredients. I often get the urge to bake late at night and these binges are seldom planned, so I don't always have sour cream or buttermilk on hand. And when it comes to banana bread, I am picky. I don't want the flavors of cinnamon, or apples, or other spices getting in the way. I just want the pure simple flavors of banana and walnuts. And I bake the bread in small pans, slice thinly, and serve warm from the oven with a cup of hot cider or tea.

Last night while the rain drizzled and the wind began to blow, we enjoyed our delectable bread, and while we nibbled, in the background we heard the limb of a scraggly bush scraping back and forth against the window screen, making one of those eerie haunted house sounds that you hear on Halloween CD's. I had complained about this annoying, overgrown bush before. So before going to sleep that night my husband said, "Do you want me to go outside and cut that limb?" I responded with a resounding "no." With the autumn weather coming on, I was rather enjoying this creepy, scratching bush. As it reminded me of a haunted house, and he knew how much I loved a good haunted house mystery.

Happy Autumn!


Vicki said...

How I wish it was getting autumn-ish here! I'm still stuck with mid-80s and clear blue skies (not to mention horrible humidity and absolutely no rain).

Proud Italian Cook said...

Hi Michelle, I absolutely love your new header! I love how you get the urge to bake at night, so cute! The banana bread sounds moist and yummy, and your soup with the sausage would be great on a very cool night like we're having tonite. Such a nice start to our autumm weather!

Michelle said...

Vicki -
I feel your pain when it comes to that humidity. Let's hope Autumn arrives in your part of the country soon.

Marie -
I'm glad you liked the new header. My hubby worked the late shift for years, so to pass the time, I began baking at night. It sounds crazy, but it's rather relaxing.

Hungry Passport said...

Great blog entry, Michelle, but you have me whimpering like a puppy. Here in LA it's hot, and it will be for a long time yet. Autumn's my fav season, and we get seriously shortchanged out here. I'm tempted to turn the AC down to the meat-hanging range, so we can wear sweaters and make up some of that lovely andouille and bean soup. Cheers! Carol (p.s. Your new header ROCKS!)

Michelle said...

Hungry Passport -
Always glad to meet up with another Autumn loving gal, I thought we were shortchanged here in Oklahoma, but I guess L.A. would be worse. I'll send some cool weather your way in November if you send me some sunny L.A. weather in January. Deal? (I'm glad you liked the header. I had trouble getting it scaled down to fit, but oh well, this will have to do.)

Hungry Passport said...

Thanks for the comments on Slow Food, Michelle. In the interest of not having to read long, skinny columns, please e-mail me at, and I'll e-mail you back with more observations on the event and the organization.
Thx! Carol

michelle of bleeding espresso said...

I have my ripe bananas in the freezer awaiting that first really cool day of autumn :)

Michelle said...

Michelle of bleeding espresso -
Some warm banana bread and a hot espresso sounds really good. What's autumn like in your part of the world?

Significant Snail said...

OH! I want your soup and banana bread! I was just thinking about making a soup like this! Fall is the best isn't it?