Saturday, February 11, 2012


There's a big old year full of great things ahead of me.  Also, a large amount of things I need to get in order.  And quite a few things I need to bake.  There's always that, isn't there?

My biggest issue is the actual doing.  I'm good on the dreaming bit.  I dream big, think grandly, and always want to make it a huge deal.  But when it comes right down to the doing, I falter a bit.  I'm thinking it's because I'm scared out of my gourd of failure.  Isn't failing to do the things you say you will still... failure?  Yes.  It is indeed.

This is me telling myself to push.  Push hard for the things that scare me and I'll get done the things that thrill me.

Cookies to soothe the soul and make you feel all warm and cozy inside is where we can start.  Among the thousands of recipes out there, I found my favorite crispy cookie recipe.  I offer it to you now to munch on while you plan the rest of your year.

These cookies taste like there's cinnamon or nutmeg in them.  They taste like possibility and warmth. They crunch in the most satisfying way.  You will get crumbs in your milk, on the table, and on your lips.  Enjoy every last morsel.

And then there's the chocolate...  Bittersweet hunks of goodness.  Chop it up (but not too much!).  I don't know about you guys, but I love finding a HUGE melty, morsely, silky piece of chocolate in a freshly-baked cookie.  Life changing.

So make this your breakfast.  Or lunch.  Or dinner.  Or second dinner...  Whatever.  And while you're at it, get excited about the year ahead, and all that time you'll have to bake more!

Crispy Chocolate Chunk Cookies
Adapted from King Arthur Flour

2/3 cup dark brown sugar, packed (or light, depending on your taste)
2/3 cup sugar
1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup vegetable shortening
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 large egg
2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
8 ounces roughly chopped bittersweet chocolate

*preheat oven to 375 degrees; prep a baking sheet with parchment paper*

1. In a standing mixer, cream together the sugars, butter shortening, salt, vanilla, vinegar, and baking soda.  Beat until smooth.

2. Beat in the egg until thoroughly mixed.  After you scrape down the sides of the bowl, mix in the flour until it disappears.  Stir in the chocolate.

3. Using a cookie scoop (or tablespoon), scoop 1 1/4 inch balls of dough onto the prepared pan, leaving about 2" between dough balls, as the cookies will spread out.  Bake for 11-12 minutes, or until edges of the cookies are golden.  Cool on the pan for a few minutes, and then completely on the rack.  Continue with the rest of the dough.  Enjoy with milk.

Oh, Hey!  You're still here!  Um, meet Alba.  My new adopted kitty.  She IS as cute as the picture suggests.  And she's always up in my space when I'm trying to eat, so I'm sure you'll see pictures of her creepin' closer and closer to the food... Guess I'll have to shoot pictures that much faster, eh?

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