The release of my pent-up need to bake, with a side of brownies, pound cake and rice krispie treats

About 3 weeks ago, I had surgery on my hand to remove some masses from between two of my fingers. Needless to say, it has been wrapped in a bandage with instructions to keep it clean and dry since then. While that meant no washing dishes, it also meant, of course, no cooking. Even without the whole keeping it dry thing, the one-handed wonder (me) couldn't have cut up a vegetable or opened a jar to save my life. It was, to say the least, torture.

For me, baking and cooking is kind of a zen thing. I get to clear out my mind as I measure ingredients, cut vegetables and boil water. It means I don't have the brainpower to worry about paying the bills, the job or the million and one things that need doing around the house. Not to mention, there's always a tangible product when you're done. It's something I love and need to do.

Well, as of Tuesday, I was once again able to get my hand wet. And being off today, I finally took advantage of that in the kitchen. At first, I was just going to make brownies for a sleepover at a girlfriend's house tonight, but once I got going, I couldn't stop.

After baking Scout's Brownies from a scrumptious recipe I found in Dianne Mott Davidson's culinary mystery "Dying for Chocolate", I went to the Food Network's site to search for a recipe using the peaches I had picked up yesterday. I found a good looking one from Emeril, "Cinnamon Pound Cake with Stewed Peaches". And while I was waiting for the pound cake to cook, I whipped up a batch of Rice Krispy treats (this link goes to a bunch of different recipes for the treats -- including one you can shape into a Mother's Day or Father's Day mug).

So how did they come out? The brownies were a hit with my husband, whom upon trying one wanted to know what I was taking to the sleepover -- they were staying home with him! I haven't tried the total effect with the pound cake yet, but from taste-testing the peaches and an errant piece of the pound cake, it's gonna be pretty darn good. I did have a mishap with the pound cake -- it bubbled over the bundt pan I used and burned onto my oven, but it turned out gorgeous in the end.

I'll let you know what the girls think at the sleepover.


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