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Fear of Baking (Chocolate chip-banana bread) | Botanical Gardens

Posted Jun 29 2012 9:30am
How many successful cakes will it take to convince me that I can make a gluten-free cake and it will be good? I wish I knew the answer to that question so I could just calm down and bake a cake once in a while. Like the *chocolate chip-banana bread from The Allergy-Free Cook Bakes Bread, for example. It's supposed to be baked in a loaf pan but I, who used to be such an optimist, didn't believe it would really work, and I'd end up with a rectangular slab.

I baked it in a 10" springform pan because I was also sure it would stick and I'd never get it out of the pan. Well, duh. It didn't stick and it turned out just fine. Probably would have worked in the loaf pan, too.

But, here's the crazy thing — I'm still afraid to try again. Why, why, why can't I get past my fear of gluten-free baking?

*You can download the recipe for Chocolate Chip-Banana bread as well as other baked goods, at Laurie Sadowski's blog,  Whisking and Writing. (The link is at the bottom of the page.) But really, I think you should buy her book.


Exploring local gardens
We've been exploring some of the public gardens in and around Seattle because I'm very interested in doing some landscaping around our small property and I'm trying to learn more about plant environments in the Pacific Northwest. And also because they are beautiful places to walk!

First we visited the Seattle Japanese Garden in the Washington Park Arboretum. It was beautiful in every direction we looked.

All the critters were out for treats from the tourists — ducks, koi and turtles made a beeline for the bridge whenever humans approached the water. I tried to photograph an over-zealous duck but it kept getting too close to my camera lens and I couldn't focus!

The koi were overjoyed to see us but soon lost interest and dispersed when they realized all I had was the camera.

The second garden we visited was the much larger  Belleview Botanical Garden, and it was my favorite of the two — it's also free as opposed to $6 each for the Japanese Garden.

According to their Web page: "The Bellevue Botanical Garden is an urban refuge, encompassing 53-acres of cultivated gardens, restored woodlands, and natural wetlands. The living collections showcase plants that thrive in the Pacific Northwest. Our demonstration of good garden design and horticulture techniques inspires visitors to create their own beautiful, healthy gardens."

I'd love to recreate some of the beauty we saw at the gardens. We'll definitely be heading back to Bellevue — there is at least one area we missed on our walk through, and I want to learn more about the plant species growing there. Next time I'll take a notebook.
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