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Thursday, October 22, 2009

milk, please

When I was teaching, I tried to elicit good behavior through a system of awards. Kids could earn tickets, stickers, or points (depending on which year I was teaching) that they could then trade in for privileges or prizes. Basically, I bribed them.

By far, the most coveted prize was a batch of chocolate chip cookies. (I handed them out at the end of my class - let the next teacher deal with the sugar high!) I stumbled onto the recipe on the back of a Butter Flavor Crisco can and made just a couple tweaks. It's the best chocolate chip cookie I've had. Seriously.

Best Chocolate Chip Cookies Ever

(makes about 4-5 dozen)

1 1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
3/4 cup Butter Flavor Crisco
2 Tbs milk
1 Tbs vanilla
1 egg
1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp salt
3/4 tsp baking soda
2 c chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 375.

Combine brown sugar, Crisco, milk, and vanilla, and mix well. Add the egg, and mix well again.

Add flour, salt, and baking soda, and (guess what?!) mix well.

Stir in the chocolate chips. (In the above picture, I used both semi-sweet and white chocolate chips, but normally, I use only semi-sweet chips.)

Use a spoon to scoop out portions of the cookie dough that are roughly 1 1/2 inch in diameter, and drop them on an ungreased cookie sheet, about 2 inches apart.

Bake for 8 minutes. (This is the perfect time for my oven to produce soft cookies - you may need to adjust the time by a minute or two.)

Remove cookies from the pan immediately, and cool on a cooling rack.

**If you don't want to make the entire batch, the cookie dough can be kept in the freezer. You can scoop right onto the cookie sheet and put the cold dough right into the oven.

Friday, October 2, 2009


Everyone loves brunch. (That's why I submitted a recipe for Cornbread Cakes Benedict to the Mississippi Magazine contest.)

Though I admit the above picture is not the prettiest, this recipe is a nice alternative to standard brunch egg dishes. We usually eat it as a scramble. Tott had a good idea, though. She made it finger food friendly by making the scramble and then putting it in Fillo cups and melting the cheese on top.

Sausage, Onion, & Apple Scramble
1 package of andouille sausage, sliced
1 onion, roughly chopped
1 or 2 green apples, diced
shredded cheddar cheese
1 tsp allspice
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp paprika
salt and pepper to taste

Saute sausage until it begins to brown. Add onions and apples. Sprinkle with spices. Saute until the onions and apples are soft. Drain fat. Serve topped with shredded cheese.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

untimely but tasty

This recipe should have been posted in June. That way, you could enjoy your gin fizz all summer long.

As it is, Kaytie wanted a glass of wine last night. We had none. She would settle for bourbon. Again, we had none. A gin drink, perhaps? Is there tonic in the fridge? Alas, no. Luckily, she's married to a bartender (me). I whipped up a gin fizz.

These drinks should be light and easy to drink, so you can guzzle them by the pool. (I like gin, so I tend to make them on the strong side.)

Gin Fizz

1 - 1.5 oz gin
3 - 4 oz club soda
1/2 tsp Splenda
juice of 1/2 a lemon

Mix over ice.