“pear muffin cake” and why T-walls are useless

Guess who finally figured out how to use Picasa! Yay! I guess this is what you do when you have a day off and not much else to do. Yes, I’m living in a region that is bursting with culture and history that I’m longing to discover, but I might as well be in Texas, because I’m not actually allowed to go out and explore.

…at least not until I visit the shooting range and learn how to “protect myself.”

Ha! Joking! Those who know me well enough know that I’m a good little girl, and weapons scare me.

And if you couldn’t tell by the tone of this blog, I’m much more into food than politics. Make cake, not war!

Cake? Did someone say cake? Let’s get nostalgic for a moment, back when I had a cute little apartment in a trendy part of DC. I could freely saunter to my local Whole Foods, grab some ingredients, and bake my little heart out. One day, not too long ago, that’s exactly what I did.

I found this recipe on Tender Crumb‘s blog. Now that I think about it…it actually was a while back when I made this. I do remember the frustration of dealing with really mushy pears, do you know how hard they are to peel? But I don’t exactly remember exactly how I followed her recipe (which she originally adapted from Dorie Greenspan). I don’t think I had oats or cider on hand, so I went along without them (using that extra 1/2 cup milk that she noted), and I think I was recovering from using too much cardamom in a previous baking experience, so I shied away from that as well. I probably cut out some of the sugar too because the pears I had were so darn sweet already.

If you ever find yourself with a couple of pears, you can’t remember when you bought them…but you do know they’re starting to go south, I highly recommend this recipe. The sweet, mushy pears give the cake a really moist texture, and it’s an easy recipe! Just throw everything together, bake it, and dust with powdered sugar.

Ahhh…the nostalgia.

Yes, we do have cake here. There is a cake shop not too far away called the “Sugar Shack”, and they apparently make all the birthday/celebration cakes. So far, I’ve indulged in three cakes: Peruvian Independence Day cake (too much red frosting), a pistachio-covered cake for a hard-working colonel in my office (kinda dry), and Happy 219th Birthday to the Coast Guard (filled with strawberries, definitely the best so far!). Why were we celebrating Peruvian Independence Day? Well, all of the security guards are Peruvian. All of them. They deserve to be celebrated. Yay Peru!

Anyway. Let’s wrap this up with a short rant on t-walls. Sure, they will supposedly absorb the shock of potential attacks, protecting my frail little body and letting me live to see 22. But, after a 12-hour shift of work, dragging said frail body back to my metal trailer that I’ll call home for the next 8 months, the T-walls failed me. If they can’t protect me from the State Department parties blasting Frankie Goes to Hollywood at 1-freaking-AM, then T-walls are of no use to me.

T-walls, you have to earn my respect, and as of now, you’re getting beat by a pair of earplugs.