Skip navigation

Tag Archives: stylz

Rich and sweet, monkey bread is a ‘pull apart’ treat. I had it as a child a few times, the simian sound intriguing and repulsing me as I gingerly sampled. Not a tradition, my grandmother exposed us to the treats for several holidays during my teen years; I still remember all ‘oohs’ and ‘ahs’.  Preparing this sweet gem as an adult was delicious gratification and an exercise in nostalgia.

Also known as Hungarian coffee cake, golden crown, pinch-me cake and bubble loaf, the origin of the term monkey bread is uncertain. Most often served as a breakfast pastry, recipes for the succulent bread first appeared in American women’s magazines and community cookbooks in the 1950s. It is traditionally served hot so that the baked segments can be easily torn away and eaten by hand.

This recipe is not super gooey like other versions. Here, the dough is divided into smaller portions so that each bite has a higher concentration of butter and cinnamon.

Hands on   : forty-five minutes

Total time :  three hours (including rising time)

Ingredients:

For the dough…..

Two envelopes of active dry yeast
Half a cup of granulated sugar
One quarter cup of warm water (115 degrees)
1 cup of milk, heated
Six tablespoons of butter, softened
Half teaspoon of salt
Two eggs, slightly beaten
Five and a half cups all-purpose flour

….and the topping:

One and a half cups granulated sugar
Half a cup of chopped walnuts
Two teaspoons ground ginger
One teaspoon cinnamon
Half cup of butter, melted

In a small bowl, dissolve the yeast and one tablespoon of the sugar in the water; allow the mixture to stand for five minutes. In a large bowl, combine the remaining sugar, milk, butter, salt and eggs.

Now: add the yeast mixture.

Next, beat in the flour a cup or so at a time, using an electric mixer. Beat until smooth.

Turn the dough onto a floured board and knead.  Let the dough rest for ten minutes, then knead the dough for eight minutes more. When finished, place the dough in a greased bowl, turning the dough greased side up.

Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled in bulk….about thirty minutes or so.

Now to work on the topping….

In a small bowl, combine sugar, walnuts, ginger and cinnamon. Set aside.

Punch the dough down and divide it into forty-eight portions.

Roll each portion into a ball. Roll each ball first in the melted butter , then the walnut mixture.. Then place the balls in a greased ten-by-four loaf pan or bundt pan. Sprinkle any remaining topping over  the dough.

Cover and allow the dough to rise for thirty minutes.

Bake at 350 degrees for fifty minutes or until golden brown. Allow your masterpiece to cool before serving.

monkey bread Pictures, Images and Photos

Serves ten.

~per serving:

621 calories (percent of calories from fat, 32), 11 grams of protein, 95 grams of carbohydrates, 3 grams of fiber, 22 grams fat 11 grams saturated), 89 milligrams cholesterol, 303 milligrams sodium.

INGREDIENTS:

1       cup uncooked elbow macaroni

1       pound ground beef

1       medium onion, diced

1/4  cup chopped green pepper

1       (fifteen-ounce) can diced tomatoes

1       tbsp ketchup

1       tbsp steak sauce

2      tbsps dried or fresh chopped parsley

1      can cream of mushroom soup

1      cup of grated cheese  (cheddar or Monterey Jack preferably)

Preheat oven to three fifty degrees; cook the macaroni according to the package directions.

Meanwhile, in a large skillit, brown the ground beef. Then add onion and green pepper and cook until the onions are translucent. Then add the tomatoes, ketchup, steak sauce and parsley.

Cook for ten minutes. Stir in cooked macaroni and season to taste with salt and pepper.

Gently fold in the cream of mushroom soup and transfer to a casserole dish that has been lightly sprayed with vegetable oil.

Sprinkle the grated cheese over the top, then bake until casserole is bubbly and the cheese is lightly browned (about thirty minutes or so).

Serves EIGHT.

Hands on time = twenty minutes

Total time          = one hour, twenty minutes

per serving:

322 calories (calories from fat, 64), 15 grams protein, 14 grams carbohydrates, 1 gram fiber, 23 grams fat (10 grams saturated), 63 milligrams cholesterol, 601 milligrams sodium.

Gayle ‘De-Licious’ Johnson has composed an excellent yarn of divergence and growth. There is Death here. There is also Life, Redemption, and Perseverance. Ms. Johnson shows superb balance in the texturing and shading of her creations. Her execution of a ‘full circle’ storytelling device in this coming of age tale was deftly implemented, injecting the reader with a sense of having traveled from there and back and then beyond; her music references pepper nostalgia throughout, cementing the period’s timesense.

Miss Johnson’s creation, the young heroine Nina, had some tough choices to make. Her clinical processing and basic fortitude, her steadfastness, was both uplifting and heartbreaking. Instilled with wisdom and a common sense uncanny for someone of her years, the entities she desired most in life were fully visualized and achievable; a certain naivety wouldn‘t allow her accept anything else, her focus laserlike and undaunted.

Guided by an internal barometer calibrated on bad influences and green eyed monsters, her counterpart was aimless and reckless. Driven by impulse and envy, Joi supplied the perfect balance, the ultimate foil. While the love made available to her was unquestionable, the firm and amorous resolve was resented and scoffed upon, returning in the form of disdain, disrespect, and deceit.

The villains: shadowy and sincere. Some in your face, others passive, causing doubt throughout, and continuing with dread when corruption surfaces. A fourth quarter revelation chimes in during the resolution, reminding us that the world is a tiny place, and that Time sheds light at its own pace.

A succulent read, this morsel satisfies like bowl of warm cobbler, draped in a dollop of your favorite topping.

Gayle Johnson delivers in What’s Past is Not Forgotten.

This  assignment made me realize how prejudiced I had become against hood literature. Apparently, an indifference to violence and unending tales of ghetto terror had developed. What was once shocking intrigue had become trendy and over populated with an engorgement of talented writers, all consumed with out shocking each other by assaulting intelligent readers with everything from violence to vice…..and every cuss word in between.

Residents come and go, but the Hood is constant, and Time has taken its toll on Bentley Manor, focal point in this installment and safe keeper of its desperate and destitute denizens. Decades strong, the apartment complex stands aimless and proud, its innards infested with junkies, hustlers,  and  kids pulling tricks in urine scented hallways.

Some stereotypes are to be expected, but the writers (Meesha Mink and De’nesha Diamond) have instilled facets and shades of these men that made them stand out not just as individuals, but also by displaying a sensitivity……a compassion for their surroundings that was most inspiring. Shocking elements were finely balanced by unexpected vulnerabilities. A fresh first person narrative sealed the deal, making for a vivid treat.

The authors found excellent pitch for the voices of the entities portrayed: a pimp that was shockingly oblivious to most everything but  business, a player, a killer, and a drug dealer, one that intended to keep his game drama free. As clichéd as the crew sounds, the introductions, the interludes, the interactions, the initiations were all executed with candor and sincerity.                                                                                                                                                                                                Unforced; quite busy,  yet never precocious.

Crisp.

This book changed my perspective on hood novels.  Accurately capturing the authenticity of the Atlanta inner city locale was an extra treat.

“I wish I had more hands”…….. I would give this novel three thumbs up.

Ð. Stylz

Editor in Chief

Chaklet Coffee Books

myspace

This wonderfully crafted tale spans one evening, with the author using flashbacks to paint the slate of her creations. She takes measures to slow the passing of time, instilling a sense of dread and gloom. Magnified by well proportioned chapters that jolt the reader in and out of the time stream, Ms. Jacobs delivers sound storytelling, with character lamentations that drive the story, equaling time on the clock. So were memories heralding their lusty Internet beginnings; an elevator ride and a walk down the hall is a journey within  a journey, the author also using impatience as a tool to reveal the true nature of the beast.

Anticipation also affected the time sense. Jeff and Jeanine’s surface reason for meeting at The RestStop was for a session of extreme sex. Their excitement was infectious, with mutually driven bliss giving rise to visions of past conquests, bathing the reader in flickering lights, reliving past expressions of their flagrant lustfulness.

With both parties claiming sexual abuse in their histories, the players were victims by their own right and pinpointing the antagonist will be a heavenly task for the reader. Both parties  are the product of incidents that leaves them mentally crippled and in some sense, ageless. In one case, the perpetrator extended the further courtesy of forgetting his victim after the unspeakable act was committed. In the other,  those that witnessed atrocities were left feeling disengaged and predacious.

Some of these missteps were a products of the last generation. These flashbacks also set the stage to avenge a wrong created in THIS generation, rendering the aggressor  blameless, depending on the point of view.

Jeff was a product of his environment; he hated women. Rather, he thought he hated women. Either way, his upbringing made not a lot of accommodations for women, ladies, or anything maternal, his only appreciation being that of unattached pleasure.

One could classify this as a tale of Man vs. Self. Said issues were instilled in the players by generational devices, allowing the reader to feel empathetic for the characters even at their most vile.

That being said, once themes of retribution and revenge are sprinkled into the equation, the true victim remains unclear and things begin to proceed in fashions unforeseen. A chance Internet meeting, they both participate in the orchestration of  engagement, with one both parties seeking to make a statement of the occasion.
Sex as a weapon; a weapon of distraction, of dominance, of degradation.

Ms. Jacobs’ concoction is a tasty pleasure, a sweet treat.

Ð. Stylz

Editor in Chief

Chaklet Coffee Books