Wednesday, August 27, 2008

(New) Mexican Chocolate

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Exactly 3 weeks ago Scott and I drove with Nic to Roswell, NM. Now, this is no easy trip, but I was convinced, and still am, that driving to college is a rite of passage. Hauling your stuff across country in the family car is part of the memory. I remember doing it from Iowa to Colorado in a borrowed station wagon... my bike mounted on the back of the car. My dad pulled out of our driveway and both wheels on the bike hit concrete, bending them into right angles. And we were off.

When we Map quested Memphis to Roswell it came to 2,000 miles. OK. Gas is $3.69 a we drive the smaller SUV with 125,000 miles on it, the Ford F-150 with 120,000 miles on it, or the tiny convertible with only 19,000? We went to Hertz. And even though I pushed for a smaller vehicle, we left in the Lincoln Town Car.

I couldn't go on and on about the sights, because there really aren't many across Arkansas, Oklahoma and the Texas Panhandle. And certainly not many in Western New Mexico. But Roswell was a sweet surprise. A charming town and a beautiful school. The New Mexico Military Institute.
Let me get this off my chest. It is NOT a rehab, a school for troubled kids (although Owen Wilson did go there), or a degree mill. For Nic, it is prep school to get his ACT/SAT scores up with the Valedictorians so he can get into the Air Force Academy and play baseball and fly big planes. But I digress. I'm blogging about chocolate.

After we get him settled, (here's your white sheets, white towels and white underwear, good luck son) we say goodbye. Wow, that was rough. Then we get into our ghetto cruiser and look at each other.
Scott: "I need to get some gas"
Susie: "I need to go to the grocery store".
So we did. I came home with a bag of drying chilies (another blog I'm sure), some sort of sauce in a cool can, assorted tortillas and Mexican chocolate. I know Walmart sells this stuff. But I'm in New Mexico, which is closer to Mexico, and I'm sad. So I think about my son, my chilies and my chocolate for 1000 miles.

Three weeks have passed, I'm going back to New Mexico this weekend, flying, through Minneapolis, which will take as long as the drive (or close) and in no way will be as comfy as my rented Lincoln.

Nic wants cookies. Peanut butter with Hershey's Kisses. Hmm, I think, I don't really like Kisses, I find them way too sweet, so how about Mexican Chocolate!

I used a basic no-flour peanut butter cookie recipe, and chopped up half a bar of Mexican chocolate. Which is nasty stuff. Grainy. Really grainy. But maybe it'd morph. I chopped up about 6 oz. and baked the most beautiful cookies. Really, they look like a million bucks. But in the end, well they're peanut butter cookies with grainy chocolate chunks.

Now what? The box is covered up in recipes in a language I cannot read, but I get the feeling people put this stuff in hot milk. It's too damn hot for hot chocolate, so that experiment will be for another day. Today, I am off to the market for Hershey's Kisses.

Peanut Butter Cookies

1 cup smooth peanut butter

1 cup light brown sugar

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 egg

1 teaspoon vanilla

Hershey's Kisses

Mix all ingredients except kisses, form into balls and plop unwrapped kiss on top. Bake at 350 for 10-12 minutes.

They beg for cold milk and melt in your mouth