Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Oh, the Weather Outside is Frightful!

I live in upstate New York.  We get a lot of snow.  We get so much snow that there is an entire vocabulary dedicated to snow--phrases like "lake effect" and "persistent bands" and "graupel."  We get so much snow that the cities of upstate New York have an annual competition called The Golden Snowball, which is awarded to the city with the most snowfall that season.  (Yes, Syracuse has won the last eight years in a row.)

Syracuse is currently in the throes of its first big snow storm.  I think we're pushing twenty inches at this point, with more expected before the week is through.  This moves us into first place, I believe, and is a healthy start toward our season average of ten feet.

It is not enough to close the city; it's really just enough to slow it down a bit.  It took me an hour to get home from work last night, for example.  Of course, my commute did include an unsuccessful errand in search of a new traction drive cable for our snow thrower.  By the time I made it through the door, I'd had just about enough.  Unfortunately, it turns out you really need the traction drive cable and there was much shoveling to be done.

My solution?  Really good, really indulgent, really easy baked goods.  Here's how:

1) Make a batch of box-mix brownie batter.  Spread in pan.
2) Add huge blobs of peanut butter directly from the jar.  Swirl slightly.

3) Bake according to package directions, minus about 10 minutes.

Yes, that's a frozen pizza next to my brownies.
4) Eat as much of the pan as you can without getting sick.

Note the snow drift in the window.

Between the pizza and the brownies, I felt strong enough to pile on the layers and pick up the shovel.  Thanks to a valiant effort by my husband earlier in the day, I was able to clear the driveway and sidewalk in about an hour and a half.  Of course, by the time I finished, a couple more inches had fallen where I'd began.  Oh, well.  Another day, another few inches, another pan of brownies.  Stay warm, dear readers, and...

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