This weekend, Mills and I got adventurous.
No, not in that way.
He purchased himself a little gym. Exercise bike and ambitious weights, complete with a yoga set (apparently for me). Bear in mind that we live in a two bedroomed flat with open plan kitchen, lounge, dining room... and now: newly acquired gymming facility/obstacle course.
Having set up the bike incorrectly on the first attempt ("oh, the saddle goes that way up..." etc), my darling ginger bearded boyfriend (yes, the goatee persists) got Superman Syndrome. He started with a quick weights workout... which lasted an hour. As I pottered off to play indoor hockey, Mills was about to test his new cycling purchase. I smiled patronisingly, having watched his forehead crinkle in consternation with each bicep curl, and left him to it.
When I got home from hockey, my GBM (ginger beard man) was not happy. He cycled for a bit, then cycled for a bit more and had apparently ended up doing 30km on the exercise bike. On his first attempt. Superman Syndrome. As my mum would say... everything in moderation, dear.
Anywho, back to my little adventure this weekend. I am not a domestic treasure. But I have, on occassion, been known to attempt baking. This weekend, I felt inspired to try my mother's banana bread recipe... again.
This time, instead of muffin tins, I tried a casserole dish. (Note to self: really must think about purchasing a baking tin... and possibly some measuring cups)
I "blended", "whipped", "mashed" and "folded" until my fingers were spasming with repetitive stress syndrome. (Mills had SS, I had RSS.)
I tasted the mixture (always good) and even used the exact ingredients as listed in the recipe (a big no-no in the culinary history of Cooking with Koekie). Except for the flour and baking powder... where I used zelfrijzend bakmeel instead. As good as, I'm sure.
Anyway, maybe the lack of exact measurements did it, or maybe it was the lack of automated blending power, but either way... my banana bread still looks more like a weapon of concussion than a food type.
At least I got it out of the casserole/baking dish in one piece, which is definitely an improvement on last time. Even Mills, bless his goateed chin, conceded that, "it is getting better."
Nevertheless, my baked goods do tend to mimic the physical properties of seabed-dwelling ocean sponges. Left it to its own devices, I'm sure my banana bread would slowly make its way towards the beach at high tide.
I phoned my mom and told her of my kitchen exploits. I even demonstrated its solid consistency by hammering the newly baked product against the chopping board.
*Thunk thunk thud*
Koekie: "Can you hear that? Can you? That's solid."
Mum: "Yes dear. I can hear it. Put the bread down."
Koekie: "And the bits of banana are purple."
Mum: "How can the banana be purple?"
Koekie: "I don't know. There are definitely purple stringy bits."
Mum: "You are amazing. Did you mash the bananas properly?"
Koekie: "Mom! Of course, I mash.. okay, maybe not as well as I could've."
Mum: "Well, maybe it's just your oven that doesn't bake it properly."
Koekie: "Ja. Maybe. My banana bread also didn't work when I tried to bake it at your place, or when I tried the same recipe in Grahamstown, or at my place in Joburg, and now again in The Hague. But sure... let's blame it on the oven. I'll buy that."
Anyone for some banana/dwarf bread? Very handy in self-defence.