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Expat wanderer

Cynthia’s Praline Cake

My friend Cynthia, who knows I love mysteries, confessed to me that it was HER praline cake featured in JA Jance’s Joanna Brady series, and that she was the Cynthia who, in the book, brings it to the community potluck supper. And . . . she shared the recipe with me!

My friends, it is an easy recipe if you have the ingredients on hand (oats, brown sugar, butter) but I warn you – no substitutions! Yes, it is full of sugars and fats – why do you think it tastes so good??

Cynthia’s Praline Cake

(This is another one you can make in two 8″ round pans, and freeze one for later.)

1 cup quick-cooking oats
1 cup cold water

1 cup white sugar
1 1/4 cups brown sugar
1 cup oil
2 eggs

1 1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt

1 stick butter (1/2 cup)
2 Tablespoons milk
1 cup packed light brown sugar
1 1/4 cut chopped pecans

In a small bowl combine the oats and water, set aside. In another small bowl, combine and mix the dry ingredients – the flour, soda, cinnamon and salt.

In a larger mixing bowl, cream together the sugars, oil and eggs. Beat, add the oat mixture alternately with the mixed dry ingredients. Mix well.

Pour into greased and floured 9 x 13 inch baking pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 35 – 40 minutes.

For the icing: Just before the cake is done, combine butter, milk, and brown sugar in a saucepan, bring it to a boil and boil for one minute. Add the pecans and mix. Spread over cake.

For Jewaira, who always asks for pictures, this is what the finished cake looks like:

April 14, 2008 Posted by | Community, Cooking, Cross Cultural, Diet / Weight Loss, ExPat Life, Food, Kuwait, Living Conditions, Recipes, Seattle | 5 Comments

Running Red Lights

I was out on seventh circle this morning, that annoying stretch where there sets of stoplights, one after another. Oone of the annoyances is the guys who are behind you honking the hell out of their horn because you STOPPED for the red lights, while others whiz right through. I am praying Kuwait has hidden cameras at all these lights and all those red-light-runners will have huge fines to pay when they go to register their cars.

Then I get to this red light:

I am only taking this photo because most of the lights along seventh ring were missing at least one light. This one – the set of lights on the right actually has a very dim light behind the red, you can see it a little if you are really looking. When the light changes, there is one green light – on the bottom of the other set of lights. I will admit this was the worst set of lights, but every single stoplight had missing traffic lights.

My friends, this is just not acceptable. There is so much labor around doing all kinds of stuff, but traffic lights – putting in fresh bulbs just isn’t that hard. There should be someone every single day of the year making sure traffic lights are ALL in working order. To allow it to go a day or two is truly criminal negligence, and some of these lights go for WEEKS.

April 14, 2008 Posted by | Community, ExPat Life, Kuwait, Living Conditions, Social Issues, Uncategorized | , , , , | 8 Comments