baking

sunday best

Chocolate Chip Cookies

Overcast, cool and damp.  That was Sunday.  But rather than baking something a little more seasonal, I decided on a classic.  These Triple Chocolate Chip Cookies are the most delicious of the chocolate chip variety! They are found in the Williams & Sonoma Essentials of Baking Cookbook (page 118).  And they are so good I can’t not share:

1 1/4c. Flour
1 tsp. Baking Soda
1/2 tsp. Salt
1/2 c. Unsalted Butter (room temp)
1/2 c. Firmly Packed Brown Sugar
6 Tbsp. Granulated Sugar
1 Large Egg
1 tsp. Vanilla Extract
1 c. Semisweet Chocolate Chips
3/4 c. White Chocolate Chips
3/4 c. Milk Chocolate Chips

Oven: 350 degrees

In a bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, and salt.  Set aside.

In a large bowl, combine the butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar.  Beat on Medium speed until smooth.  Add the egg and vanilla and beat on low speed until well blended.  Slowly add the dry ingredients and beat on low speed just until incorporated.  Mix in the chocolate chips.

Drop dough by heaping tablespoons onto the prepared baking sheets, spacing 2 inches apart.  Bake (one sheet at a time) until the bottoms and edges are lightly browned and the tops feel firm when lightly touched, 10-13 minutes.  Let cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes, then transfer to wire rack.

what a peach!

you would think it’s fall around these parts.  with highs only in the low 60’s i have been getting the itch for autumn flavors and smells… and the kitchen has been my outlet.  on sunday Brad and I made an apple pie from scratch and tonight before we headed over to a friend’s house for dinner i whipped up a peach cobbler that was oh-so-yummy if I do say so myself!  i got the recipe from this book which i have mentioned before.  and i couldn’t not share this delicious comfort food goodness.  peaches are in season here so get to your local farmer’s market and make something wonderful.  if it’s hot where you are a sherbet or sorbet might be in order, but on this rare summer day i had to go with something warm.

Double-Crust Peach Cobbler
8 cups sliced fresh peaches (about 5 lbs)
2 cups sugar
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon almond or vanilla extract
1/2 cup butter
pastry for double-crust 9″ pie

Stir together first 4 ingredients in a dutch oven; set aside until syrup forms.  Bring peach mixture to a boil; reduce heat to low,  and cook 10 minutes or until tender.  Remove from heat; add almond (or vanilla) extract and butter, stirring until butter melts.

Roll half of pastry to 1/8″ thickness on a lightly floured surface; cut into a 9″ square.  Spoon half of peaches into a lightly buttered 9″ square pan; top with pastry square.  Bake at 475 for 12 minutes or until lightly browned.  Spoon remaining peaches over baked pastry square.

Roll remaining pastry to 1/8″ thickness, and cut into 1″ strips; arrange in a lattice design over peaches.  Bake 15 to 18 minutes more or until browned.

Yield: 8 servings (or 4 very hungry gluttons!!)

Peach Cobbler

{Post Script I totally cheated on the lattice top because my pastry was too crumbly to weave.  I used a recipe that used only shortening for the pastry and I would NOT recommend it.  I had better luck on Sunday with one that used butter.}

parting gift

Last night we had dinner with friends in their beautiful 1920s home.  They are interested in Brad remodeling their basement, so they decided to turn it into a dinner thing since we’ve never all hung out.  I brought over some homemade snickerdoodles and much to my surprise I did not go home empty handed.

Somehow the conversation had turned on me and we were discussing my ineptitude at keeping things alive.  The hostess, a should be professional green-thumb, assured me that she had a plant that I could NOT kill.  I told her I bet that I could and probably faster than anyone she’s known.  I mean, I killed an ivy once for Pete’s sake.  It’s not just neglect that ensures these little life forces meet their fate…I think I hover too much.

None-the-less, my confident friend said that she was positive that I couldn’t kill this plant and to prove it she sent me home with one.  She said she loves to give them away particularly to people like me who should be shunned by any green-loving organization or individual.  I believe that this pretty little purple plant is called a shamrock.  It actually sleeps at night and then opens at first light.  I kinda like that.  Anyway, this particular plant is a seedling from the mother plant that my friend has in her living room.  She said she’s had that same exact plant since she was twelve.  (My friend is in her 40’s now.)  We’ll see, but I’m not holding my breath; I think this could end up very badly for the plant!

hostess gift

parting gift