this is very midsummer madness

Posted on July 9, 2015


SO HOT! It is hot. The kind of hot that clings to you. The air hardly moved today, and when it did, it brought no sign of relief. Struggling to make headway, squeezed into the lower level guest bathroom with sometimes two plumbers and one of the GC’s guys. When the sky finally released some rain, it was almost hard to tell if the damp feeling was rain or other…


Though I didn’t manage to get all my questions answered today, the slight breeze that did manage to find it’s way down into the lower levels of this week’s brownstone. The plumber and I seemed to handicap each other with every move we made, we were only made aware of the change in air, with the introduction of the scent of a nearby cigarette which hung in the air as though it had just been blown directly at my face.

Aside from my new and improved short(er) temper, the obvious (and long-term) financial and health benefits to quitting smoking were the things seemed to be most important to me. Buuuuut I can’t lie…. I would have maybe thought about it a little bit longer if I had known that I’ll get some semblance of my sense of smell back. A smell I used to love, now turns my stomach.

I could smell the cigarette smoke hanging in the air, as the familiar smell rolled down my throat with every breath I took. I would’ve gone upstairs to avoid the smell, but there was nothing I could do. And it was so damn muggy I was avoiding walking up or down the stairs carelessly.

When it is this warm, tensions can run high, and confusion and snappy responses settle into the norm.

To help make up in advance for my impending crankiness, I came home (listening to my” target=”_blank”>new favorite summer song multiple times to get through traffic with sanity intact) made a little dinner of rice pilaf and sausages, and a light salad, I followed it up by making some cupcakes. I don’t really like chocolate but I know a great deal of people who do… Also, recently, I have been able to tolerate the taste of chocolate a lot better too…


mini oreo chocolate cupcakes

  • Servings: 32 cupcakes
  • Difficulty: easy
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inspired by Baking a Moment’s Simply Perfect recipe 

Preheat oven to 350, move racks to middle position in oven.

Start by mixing the dry ingredients in the large bowl.

1- 1/2 c sugar
1-1/2 c all-purpose flour
1/2 c unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 c mini semi-sweet chocolate chips
1-1/2 t baking powder
1 t baking soda
1 c butter (chilled/chopped)
4 lg eggs
1 c sour cream
2 t vanilla extract
1 t vanilla bean paste
1 container mini oreo cookies (I just happened to have large box of them…)

In large bowl with dry ingredients, add in all the wet ingredients, and mix  on medium- low until completely combined.
Using a spatula, check that there are no dry spots left under that you missed with your electric mixer.
This mixture is fairly light, and will hold pretty well when scooped.
Fill baking cups 1/3 of the way, place 3 mini oreos in each cup, pushing down slightly to even out batter.


(feel free to snapchat your friends before you get more batter on your fingers…)
Cover the lil baby oreos with a dollop of batter, just enough to cover, and so that in the end your baking cups are only just over half-full.
Bake, and turn half-way so as to bake evenly (especially if you have a funky hot spot in your oven like me!) and test with a toothpick to be sure they’re cooked through.
Let cool completely before frosting – pictured is a new vanilla bean frosting that I will hopefully post sooner rather than later, which I think is preeeeety tasty, and mimics the cream in the oreo pretty nicely too.

I am disappointed I have neglected to update this for such a long time. Life does have quite the unusual way of getting in the way. Until the next one – stay cool, and take water breaks!