Butter cookies as a candidate for tea cookies

image by amwrecipes @ Flickr

In the afternoon I tend to feel a little run down and I need caffeine but not as much as there is in a cup of coffee.   I’ve always suspected that a cup of tea has less caffeine than a cup of coffee.  The mayo clinic’s article  Caffeine content for coffee, tea, soda and more lists the caffeine amounts for different beverages including coffee and tea.  I felt that my cup of tea would be more enjoyable with a lite cookie and so I set out to find a butter cookie recipe.  Butter Cookies II Recipe – Allrecipes.com. recipe by allrecipes.com is the kind of recipe that grows on you until you  love it.

This recipe is similar to a sugar cookie recipe but it does not have the leavening agents baking soda or baking powder.  At first my opinion of the cookie was biased because I had imagined a different kind of butter taste as a tea cookie.  As I begun to absentmindedly eat a few more cookies, I found myself becoming addicted to them.  This cookie was just sweet enough to enhance the taste of my cup of  Tazo organic Chai tea.  The bonus about  this cookie dough is that after it has been refrigerated you can cut off only as much cookie dough as you need to bake, allowing you to bake more cookies at another time.  If you  feel this cookie is a little too plain, try this sugar cookie icing  (recipe from Food.com) to jazz up the taste.

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So long to buying éclairs at the grocery store

Image: amwrecipes from From flickr

Since starting this blog I have been inspired to reach beyond what I have been making in the past and make some things, that either I haven’t made in a long time or haven’t made at all.   An éclair is a dessert that my boyfriend and I purchase from the grocery store on occasion.  Due to the quantity of  the éclairs  in the package we don’t get to enjoy them for very long.  Since my boyfriend’s birthday is this week I thought that I would spoil him with homemade éclairs.   The recipe that I used was from www.marthastewart.com.

First off, let me say that I will never say “let me make these éclairs real quick”!  There’s no ‘real quick’ about making these éclairs, but they are very delicious.  I started this recipe at about noon and at roughly 4:30pm they were completed and put in my fridge.  The Pate a Choux peaked without the need for the egg white.  The Pastry cream came out awesome and  using a ice bath to cool it down is something I’ve never done before but it allowed me to fill my éclairs sooner.  The chocolate glaze was a little bit of problem for me and I won’t blame it on the recipe, it was my fault that it went wrong.  I thought that I had bought semisweet baking chocolate squares but I had not.  I was able to make the glaze using an 11.5 oz bag of Nestle milk chocolate chips.   My error saved me the step of having to chop baking chocolate.   I believe that using this method allows for a thicker, more spreadable chocolate than the original glaze recipe.

So, there you have it.  If you have an entire day free and all the ingredients on hand you can make these éclairs and spoil somebody that you love.

Thanksgiving pie requests are in

Betsy’s apple pie by acnatta of Flickr

Betsy’s apple pie by acnatta, on Flickr
Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic License  by  acnatta 

“The First Law of Pies: ‘No Pastry, No Pie.”  – Janet Clarkson  Pie

I started a tradition a year ago to make one pie for every person eating a Thanksgiving meal with me.  Last year I made a key lime pie and a pecan pie.  I enjoyed making and eating those pies very much.  This year I will be making a key lime pie, an apple pie and a cherry pie. The recipes that I have collected aren’t very fancy but are classically wonderful. Thanksgiving is my opportunity to show friends and family that I am thankful for through the preparation of the meal.  My recipe selection goal was to find recipes that will deliver the flavor that my guests expect of their pie.

The key lime pie recipe that I selected is from  gourmet sleuth.com.   This site has many useful links such as a conversion calculator and how to videos.  It is well worth bookmarking.  The apple pie recipe from momswhothink.com caught my eye.   I like the ingredients in this recipe and that the pastry and pie filling are found in the same recipe (two thumbs up!).   The cherry pie, which is the pie I will be making for myself, was selected  for its simplicity.   I love canned cherry pie filling and this pie is just an excuse to eat the filling.   Comstock’s website (a maker of cherry pie filling) provided me with just the recipe that I needed.

Tune in after Black Friday for my review of these pie recipes.

Cinnamon raisin cookies

Today I will be making cinnamon raisin cookies as a thank you gift for a friend.  The recipe is from Cooks.com.   I was originally going to make oatmeal raisin cookies but the oats that I have are unusable.  I can’t wait to see how these cookies will taste.

The recipe was easy to follow and the cookies came out nice and soft.  Between batches I put the cookie dough in the fridge.  I believe that it helped the cookies shape better in the oven.

The cookie are soft and would be excellent with an afternoon cup of tea.  Although I like taste of these cookies, I would never trade a chocolate chip cookie for one.

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