Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Cinnamon Swirl Blondies

For the past few years, I have been the Sunday School teacher for the 8-year-olds at church. On the first Sunday of the new year, when I have all of my new little ones in front of me, the first thing I do is ask them what treat they want me to bring to class for their birthday. The requests have been all over the place, everything from chocolate chip cookies and rice krispie treats to homemade lollipops and monkey bread. The monkey bread was a bit of a logistical nightmare last month since everyone likes warm monkey bread but Sunday School is at least an hour into church, and it's super messy, and then the birthday boy wasn't even there. I felt bad that we ate his birthday treat without him, but I was darned if I was going to make monkey bread twice, so I came up with these cinnamon swirl blondies to bring the next week to make up for it (I figured they'd be an OK substitute because they have vaguely the same flavor profile:  butter, cinnamon, and sugar!) They were delicious! I admit that I ate 3 of them. Out of a batch of 12. And I would have eaten more if there had been more!

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Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Stella Blue's Pasta

Many moons ago, my family was vacationing in Hawaii. We spent the day sight-seeing around Maui and ate lunch at a tasty little cafe called Stella Blue's, where somebody ordered a yummy pasta dish with tomatoes, basil, and garlic. Later in the afternoon, when it was time to head back to the hotel for a little siesta, we discovered that there was a huge fire right in the middle of the sideways-figure 8-shaped island, and that the only road that could get us from Kihei to Kaanapali Beach was shut down until further notice. What a predicament! So we got ice cream, went to the movies (Mulan, which shows you how long ago this was), ate at Stella Blue's again (it was that good), and parked our rental car in the long line of cars waiting on the side of the road for the highway to reopen. At some point in the night, the fire was put out, the road was reopened, and we went back to our hotel and went to sleep. But my family has been eating Stella Blue's Pasta ever since! It is a true family favorite, and probably the best memento we've ever brought home from a vacation.

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