on friday, we drove up to big bear to visit with the hub's paternal grandma, otherwise known as g-wan. she'd recently moved back up there after spending the summer in a senior complex not too far from us, but decided she wanted to be closer to her friends and return to the home she'd shared with her dearly departed husband. and despite the fact that it's AUGUST, she'd summoned the hub for help getting the house ready for the winter. hey, she's 83 - we oblige her as often as possible. and she hadn't seen the bean in a few months, so we piled in the car and trucked up there to do her bidding and have dinner with her.
i wasn't sure if she'd planned on cooking or if we were going to head out to a local joint for our meal, so i decided i'd make something to take up for dessert. i'd never made brownies from scratch before, always choosing instead to take the easy way and make them from a boxed mix. but you're familiar with my quest of late to make as much of my own cuisine as possible, so i searched online for a recipe to try.
i rushed home after work to get going, skimmed through the instructions, and found that it was a pretty simple task. first, i melted the chocolate and butter together:
stirred it till it was nice and smooth:
mixed the rest of the ingredients up:
and then poured the whole fudgy, gooey mixture into my pan.
35 minutes later, it was puffy and moist (!!) and perfect.
despite the fact that it was friday afternoon, we managed to get up the mountain in just over an hour, hitting very little traffic on our way. the hub spent a couple of hours zooming through the to-do list, and then we got back in the car and went into the village.
there was a small street fair going on, and we enjoyed strolling up and down the main street with the bean. a lot of dogs were out for the evening, and she barked at them as she sashayed past.
i love gift shops that sell fun novelty crap.
"books!" the bean shouted as we passed by this store.
this life-sized ice cream cone brought her to an abrupt halt. "créme!" she exclaimed. yes, that's how she pronounces it. apparently, my daughter is european.
there were folks crowded around this car, and rightfully so - it was cool as hell and restored to its former glory.
we ended up settling on this joint for dinner:
as we waited to be seated, the bean took a ride on the piggy. "whee!" she said.
my southern sweet tea, served the way it should - in a mason jar.
i shared my giant 1-pound hickory-smoked ham steak with the bean and the hub. it was delicious.
it was a lovely night, which brought lots of folks out to stroll the streets and browse in the shops.
we stopped to get gas, and were grossed out by the zillion bugs that were buzzing around the car. see those specks? all the white ones? yeah, critters. yuck.
we'd walked g-wan up and down the street a couple of times and she was pooped, so once we returned to her house we hung out just long enough to have dessert with her:
i love those little mini-cups of ice cream. the included spoons are silly small, but i use 'em anyway. haha!
we changed the bean into her jammies, loaded her into the car, said our goodbyes to g-wan, and enjoyed a leisurely evening drive home.
yay for whee-kend!