Saturday, March 13, 2010

Guest Post with Feminine Wiles

It is with great pleasure to introduce you all to the Lovely Cheri of Feminine Wiles she is a fellow NC blogger her blog is all about life and raising children and boy can she cook. She is always eager to help me with cooking questions on twitter, love her enjoy and be sure to visit her blog.

When Rebecca invited me to “guest blog,’ I was both flattered and flummoxed. Chow And Chatter is well-read, well-established and well-regarded. Feminine Wiles, on the other hand, is far from taking flight. More caterpillar- than butterfly-like, really.

As I was reminded this morning, though, I shouldn’t disregard the essential and all-powerful nature of the “girlfriend network.”

I’d been doing the usual SAHM runaround, eventually landing at the orthodontist’s office. While Son went back to be serviced and await the despised just-a-few-more-weeks news, I cracked open my beloved MacBook to tap out a few notes.

Weird. Why was the screen so dim? I squinted, but only for an instant, because I don’t want to admit that my opthalmologist was right in saying I’ll soon need glasses.

Hmm. Squinting, but still dim. Fine. I tilted, and then, re-tilted the screen. Surely it was a matter of finding the just right angle. Maybe 79 degrees. Maybe while squinting.

I bobbed my head, birdlike. Left. Left. Right. Forward. Forward. Whoa. Better stop that before someone in the waiting room thinks I’m trying out for a Bojangles commercial.

I was still befuddled when Son and his orthodontist came out to deliver the usual and dreaded just-a-few-more-weeks news. Oddly, they both regarded me very curiously – as if they’d been privy to my squinting chicken act.

After I scheduled Son’s next appointment, we exited the office, and I instinctively reached up to pull down my sunglasses. Duh. What a dingbat. I’d been wearing my sunglasses in the orthodontist’s office. The computer screen wasn’t dim. The computer operator, however, was dimwitted.

Why didn’t someone tell me?

No girlfriend would let me walk around like that. Even 12-year-old Darling Daughter knows that membership in the “girlfriend network” is unconditional. It’s our obligation to tell another “girlfriend” when her tag is hanging out, when her bicuspid is coated in spinach, when her zipper’s gapping and revealing those cute pink panties, or when toilet paper trails her stiletto.

This past weekend, I found myself with an abundance of past-their-prime bananas. I used Twitter to issue the call to “the network.” The girlfriends – most of whom I’ve yet to meet – responded quickly. Suggestions – for freezing and smoothies – flowed. Recipes – for cobbler, for banana pudding – were tweeted just as quickly. (Rebecca, of course, shared her own recipe for luscious Banana Brownie Cake. Thank you, Rebecca!)

I’ve made Banana Bread since I was 12, but The Ambient Chef’s version turned out to be the best I’d ever made – moist, crusty and super simple to make.

And I feel sure that neither she, nor Rebecca, nor AprillWrites or StepfordLife or CookingVirgin would never have let me wander around that orthodontist’s office with my sunglasses on.

Or trailing a few squares of Charmin. I’m just sayin’.

The Ambient Chef’s Mom’s Best Banana Bread


  • 2 very ripe bananas, mashed
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 2 cups sifted flour
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 generous pinch nutmeg
  • 1 stick butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs


  1. Preheat oven to 350. Grease a loaf pan, well.
  2. Mash bananas with lemon juice. Set aside.
  3. In a small bowl, stir or sift together flour, salt, baking powder and nutmeg. Set aside. In a large mixing bowl, cream together butter and sugar. When well combined, beat in eggs, one at a time. Stir in mashed bananas to combine well.
  4. Stir in dry ingredients until combined.
  5. Pour into prepared pan. Bake 1 – 1 ¼ hours, or until loaf tests done.
  6. Cool 10 minutes in pan on rack, then remove to rack to cool completely.

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