Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Colorful Wedding Shower Cookies

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You can see how my cookies tell the story of my life.  A few years ago it was all about graduation, senior night and Halloween parties.  Now, I am making college cookies,(USAFA, Millsaps, Oklahoma!) and for my friends, wedding and baby.  I can see what the next phase of my life is, thanks to my "older" friends!  Ha!  Not that much older! But my goodness, the weddings in our neighborhood are a testament to the aging population.  In another few years, I'll be making these same friends cookies for their grand babies!

My diamond ring cookie cutter and I have been spending a lot of time together this spring.  And most of the showers have been sort of subtle and pinks and silvers.  When my friend Annie suggested something bright and springy, I was all in!  With the wedding a few short weeks away, I think the mood is light and everyone realizes that the hardest work is done.  Now, you just enjoy!

For the record, I have no desire to make a platter like this for anyone I gave birth to, until I have made those Congrats Graduate it?

Friday, April 19, 2013

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies With Coconut Oil

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Yep, I just had to bake more.  Maybe you saw my post on the Chocolate Chip Cookie that I made with coconut oil?  Well, I am a non cookie eater, really, I bake them primarily.  But I was into the chocolate chip ones for sure.  Then I had that peanut better hankering.  Remember that commercial? "Hey, you got peanut butter in my chocolate?"

Perfect together!

The easiest way to measure peanut butter, coconut oil, anything goopy!

That's what I was going for here.  I didn't find a perfect recipe, so I made my own.  I know it sounds crazy, but these cookies have no grease factor.  None.  You know that greasy print a butter cookie makes?  Nope.  Nada.  I do not proclaim these healthy, just an alternative.  Did I mention I am making these for my kids Finals Week Survival boxes?  Hope they make it to the post office.....

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies With Coconut Oil

1 cup coconut oil
1 1/4 cup peanut butter  (I use creamy, but you can use crunchy)
2 cups light brown sugar
1 Tablespoon Lyle's Golden Syrup (obscure, but worth finding)
1 Tablespoon vanilla
2 eggs
2 1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 bags of chocolate chips

Cream the coconut oil, brown sugar and peanut butter until well blended.  Add Lyle's and vanilla and both eggs.  Add the flour and baking soda and mix until incorporated.  The dough will be smooth and shiny.

Delicious refiner's syrup.  Beats corn syrup any day!

REMEMBER:  Coconut oil is liquid at warm temperatures, like a kitchen in summer.  So you will want it chilled if necessary before creaming it.

Make 1 inch blobs of dough on a Silpat covered cookie sheet and bake at 350F for about 9 minutes.  I move them top to bottom halfway through the baking time.  Cool on a wire rack.  Deeeelicious!

So, what are you waiting for?  Get in there and bake!

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Coconut Oil Chocolate Chip Cookies

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Soft and Delicious!
So a few years back I was strolling my local Whole Foods, and I came across this.  Coconut Oil.  I really knew nothing of it, but I was certain it was bad for you. But if that were the case, why would I find it here?  I grabbed the jar and headed tot he book section and started reading.

I've tried many, but this one is my favorite!
I was fairly astonished.  It supposedly has many, many benefits.  Now, helping one lose weight seems very unlikely, but it is a wonderful oil to cook an egg, makes the very best popcorn, great for swishing in your mouth to help a mouth sore, does a miracle on dry elbows and feet. Did you hear me about the popcorn?  THE very best popcorn ever!  I give my dog a blob on her food every once in awhile, and a teaspoon in a smoothie makes it creamy and delicious.  Here's one blogger who started quite the comment thread, everyone has an opinion on this stuff!  And you may remember the little chocolates I made on a whim a while back.  Melt in your mouth! So when I came across this recipe on Pinterest, I decided to try it out.  The Well Traveled Wife is a charming little blog, and I am happy to send you there!  This is how the recipe goes.

Coconut Oil Chocolate Chip Cookies

1/2 cup coconut oil
1 cup plus 1 Tablespoon brown sugar
2 eggs
1 Tablespoon vanilla
1 3/4 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
12 oz. chocolate chips

I use a Kitchen Aid stand mixer and creamed the oil and sugar.  Add the vanilla and the eggs.  Then the dry ingredients and the chips.  When it is well mixed, drop onto a cookie sheet (I use Silpats) and bake at 375 for about 8 minutes.  I rotated the sheets halfway through the baking time.

This measuring cup in the best for measuring peanut butter, Crisco, coconut oil, honey etc!  I got mine at Sur La Table.
The verdict?  You would never know.  I gave Mr. Preppy one, and he is allergic to coconut (not really, but he tells everyone this so he doesn't have to eat it!)  He had no clue.  Proclaimed them the best he has had in a long time!  They are delicious.  As with any chocolate chip cookie you could add nuts, coconut, dried fruit or any other chips.  A great way to make a less greasy and healthier (?) cookie.  So, what are you waiting for?  Get in there and bake!

Monday, April 15, 2013

Ole Miss Alum Engagement Cookies

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I love to incorporate a little something different into a cookie platter.  So when I said I would make this engagement platter, the trick was how to get those Ole Miss colors in there without it looking too patriotic!  There was no Col. Reb cookie, but red and blue are not the most romantic colors.  I think we solved the problem, and the cookies were loved!  Mission accomplished!

Friday, April 12, 2013

Happy 80th Cookies Times Two!

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I count my blessings every day.  I always start with my Mom and Dad. Not only have they been happily married for 60 years, they are both still healthy.  When my friend told me her parents were both turning 80, I was thrilled they wanted some sugar cookies.  So of course I think of my cookie idols and the beautiful china cookies, the antiqued cookies, flowers and all the other things you think of when you think of "older" folks.  Ha, jokes on me.  No doubt my friend gets her spunky spirit from her parents, they wanted color!  Nothing too serious, and not boring.  So how about a platter full of colorful candles?  Why not.  One of my favorite cookies to decorate!  And yes, I spelled the names correctly.  We're from the South you see, if you don't come up with something cute and clever for the grandkids to call you, you could be Granny.  So happy 80th Geez and Grumps!

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Sip and See Piano Recital Cookies

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Sip and See?  It's a Southern term for a get together, usually ladies, to take a peek at a newborn.  It is not necessarily a shower, sometimes involves a spiked punch, always includes someone's home made pimiento cheese.  I love the South!  This Sip and See was very special.  There were 2 baby girls, the moms were neighbors growing up, and the whole neighborhood (moms and daughters) were invited.  As if that weren't enough to celebrate, there is a new generation of girls, and one just had a recital at Carnegie Hall, so she played her recital at the party.  So much to celebrate!  And it made for a very diverse platter of cookies!

Okay.  So let's celebrate!