One of the setbacks of living in an old Illinois farmhouse in the wintertime is the draftiness.
Although Chicago's "windy city" nickname referred to the political machines of bygone eras and NOT Mother Nature, the rest of the state can attest that the wind whips through our state throughout all seasons. Its an incessant wind that howls throughout winter and accounts for a lot of time in the spring being devoted to clearing sticks and fallen tree limbs from yards. More often than not, in the winter time, little, red weather alerts pop up on my iPhone proclaiming yet another Winter Wind Advisory. Its just something I've gotten used to. But this winter is completely different for me as its the 1st winter we have been living in our farmhouse. I'm quickly adapting to the drafts that cause me to wear my thick, wool snowmobiling sock inside the house during the day. The other day temps dropped and the wind chill sat right around -1 degree F. Fun, fun... I know!
So, to combat the freezing temps slowly but surely creeping into our home, I bake.
So far this week I've made 2 cakes and 1 pie (this is since Sunday). Chris bought me Paula Deen's Southern Cooking Bible for Christmas and it has really come in handy.
Of course, as you can imagine, most of her recipes call for an ungodly amount of butter and sometimes I cringe a little when people go for that second helping of whatever dessert I've made (as I know the deep, dark buttery secrets that that piece of cake holds!). For the most part, however, I can't blame anyone for wanting more than one helping. Each recipe I've tried so far has been really very good.
I've been making the dessert section of her cookbook my bitch, so to speak. Ha!
Since Sunday I've made Peaches 'n' Cream pie (fabulous and custardy), Peach Upside Down Cake (highly, HIGHLY recommended), and this morning, to chase the draft out of the kitchen, Old Fashioned Sponge Cake came to be.
It may not be the most waistline friendly method, but Chris has come in from the cold to a warm, bakery-scented house every night this week and he loves it.