Just a few short weeks till the Christmas get-it-done shopping time, I went to the Barnes and Noble at the Avenue. I read on Facebook that one of a team of two authors who wrote the book Two Chicks from the Sticks would be at the store autographing books.
I thought that would make a nice gift for the ladies in the family to have an autographed copy for a Christmas present. I met Jill Schwalbe, and she not only autographed five books for the ladies who are in my life, but she chatted with me and put notations and hearts at certain recipes that my daughter, my daughter in law and my son’s girlfriend would like to try to make.
Jill has a great personality! I didn’t get to meet the other chick, Jamie Greenland, but I could tell her and Jill were the best of friends for a good reason. I thought yes, she would autograph the books and I would move on with my day, but I found myself talking with someone who seemed like a wise, inspirational friend.
I told Jill that I would love to blog about the book Two Chicks from the Sticks. She loved the idea. Seems that the two chicks refers back to two friends who had reunited at one of the ladies baby shower.
One of the ladies had made the cutest little baby chick cookies and someone said how they were two chicks from the sticks. This connection of two friends began their journey into book writing.
Both had learned to bake from their moms when growing up in Iowa. Somehow they managed putting together a baking cookbook from miles apart from each other.
This is a testimony to what two great friends can do when they put themselves to work for a good cause. The cookbook is great! Before writing a blog about the book to endorse the recipes, I thought that I should try to bake one of the recipes.
This was the hardest part to writing the blog, choosing from the many delicious recipes. When looking through the book I found the Banana Cake on page 75. The recipe was a cake made from scratch. Don’t think I’ve tried to make a cake from scratch in many, many years ago. It was a glob of a mess.
I bought all the ingredients and lined them up on the big table in the dining room. Gave myself a pep talk a few times. You can do this! It’s just a simple cake.
There are lots of bananas in the cake! Caramel drizzle cooking on the stove! Banana Cake made the house smell delicious!
I have these cake pans from forever ago, that have a groove in the middle of the pan which allows for fruit, in this case lots of fresh bananas sit in the middle without oozing out the sides. I put in the bananas, caramel drizzle and added some chocolate chips since my husband can’t eat the nuts recommended in the recipe.
The last step to the recipe was freshly made frosting which is homemade whipped cream. This is worth the time it takes to make the whipping cream. No whip in a tube or ready made whip in a can. Just the freshest whipping cream made from heavy cream.
Truly a wa-la moment! The Banana Cake from the baking book Two Chicks from the Sticks was complete and ready to eat.
My husband loved the cake!
Two Chicks from the Sticks taught me how to bake from scratch in a world of open a package or just buy a store bought cake is the norm. The sweetest thing in the book is that the two chick friends, as hard as the work to be great, working moms in this world of rush, rush, rush till you’re the perfect mom, well they both didn’t forget their moms.
They dedicated the book to their moms who are both Jill and Jamie said, “our first (and forever favorite) baking teachers.” Thank you for the inspiration to include their momma chicks hanging out back in those Iowa sticks!