smells from the kitchen

The holidays are here! This weekend I was unable to attend Meghan’s infamous Christmas party in Philly, which made me sad, BUT the silver lining in having a chill (literally) weekend in Lewisburg is that Tracy was throwing a cookie exchange! I’d never been to one before so this was a pretty exciting way to spend my Sunday, although I admit I was slightly sweating realizing I needed to bring baked goods. Now, cooking I can do; show me a turkey, veggies, fish, whatever, and I can cook it. Baking on the other hand… not so much. The only baked good I’ve managed to master so far has been my healthy take on Pop Tarts. So, I held my breath and told myself I’d make two kinds, hoping at least one recipe would give me some eatable treats I wouldn’t be embarrassed to share!

eeeThe first recipe comes from Gimme Some OvenChocolate Chocolate Chip Cookies. These babies are GOOD and the recipe is super easy. I have to admit, seeing the ingredients that go into making cookies kind of made me gag: 2 sticks of butter, a cup of sugar, raw egg… BARF. Butter is so greasy and gross I started to remember why I left baking up to the Spatularettes and my college roommate Melissa of Cake by Melissa Rose. Once I added the cocoa powder and chips to the batter, it became much more appealing! I couldn’t resist the super yummy-looking spoon, so I licked the leftover batter off of it… shoot me! 🙂 These bake quickly and yield 3-dozen. I’m proud to say I only ate the one little baby cookie I made to eat with my turkey chili lunch… something told me I’d have my fill of cookies tomorrow so I held out 🙂 Boy were these the perfect combo… chewy, chocolaty, and really hit the spot. They are sweeeeeeeeet, so I’m glad I made plenty to share! I tried to “clean up” up the recipe by using all organic products and quality sugar. Don’t get me wrong, these AREN’T healthy ha-ha, but they definitely are the perfect treat for any sweet tooth.

wThe second recipe was for Peppermint Puffs from BlogHer, highlighted during a feature on 12 Cookies for Christmas. This was a slightly more ambitious endeavor because the batter required packing into balls and minor prep work in breaking up candy canes. It took me about a dozen puffs in before I perfected my ball-making skills. The directions aren’t kidding… the batter get crumbly!! I made two testers for these; one I ate right out of the oven and let me tell you Y-U-M!! The other I had the following night with a cup of coffee. These were less chewy after sitting overnight, despite keeping them in an airtight container, so I dipped it in my coffee mug. I liked them because the ingredients were simple: egg whites, all purpose flour, minimal butter, etc. and, the mint flavor balanced out the sweetness. These cook pretty quickly too, about 9-10 minutes.

Ho! Ho! Ho!

Happy cookie-eating from Pace Of Mind! Don’t forget to “like” us on Facebook
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Note: For both of these I pulsed all the dough ingredients in my food processor. It fluffed the butter really well and helped with making the batter easier to work with and shape. For portion control, I used a tablespoon measuring cup… don’t worry, they expand in the oven!

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