Love is a Bowl of Cheese [baking sheet macaroni and cheese]

Love is a lot of things, depending on whom you ask.  According to Peanuts, it’s walking hand in hand.  And if you could ask Andy Williams, he’d tell you it’s a many splendored thing.  Anna would burst into song, letting you know that love is open door (and to be honest, dear readers, I’d do that too, especially if you were riding in the car with me).  But the other night, for AGOMYR and me, love was a bowl of cheese.

love is a bowl of cheese.

She sketched this while were cooking dinner.  Shouldn’t she branch out into Sharpie-lettering?

baking sheet macaroni and cheese.

As I was tagging AGOMYR in Food 52’s Instagram of this recipe, she was tagging me.  That’s the kind of connection we share.

baking sheet macaroni and cheese.

So after work one evening, we got together in the name of all things cheesy.  We boiled water, cooked noodles, and grated 24 ounces of cheese.  24.  Ounces.  Of cheese!

This recipe is amazing.  It takes no time at all to make, and it produces a vast quantity of macaroni and cheese.  She and I had seconds, my husband had an initial portion that was equal to both of ours, and we’ve still got leftovers.  And, oh, the crispy cheese.  Because it bakes with more surface area there’s almost a 1:1 ratio of creamy sauce to crunchy cheese.  And that’s perfect.  Get this on your dinner table this week.

To make macaroni and cheese for a crowd, you will need:

 

  • 1 Tablespoon butter
  • 12 ounces extra-sharp cheddar cheese, coarsely grated
  • 12 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, coarsely grated
  • 1 pound pasta spirals (or other small shape)
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne
  • Salt
  • 2/3 cup whole milk

Preheat the oven to 475 degrees.  Use butter to grease a rimmed 11 x 17 baking sheet.  Combine the grated cheeses and set aside a heaping 2 C for topping (this is the crunchy part).

Cook pasta for 6 minutes, and drain.  Combine with the cheeses, cayenne, salt, and milk.  Spread on baking sheet, and top with reserved cheese, and another sprinkling of cayenne if you’re feeling spicy.

Bake until golden and crisp, about 15 minutes, and serve immediately.

 

Broadening my Freezer Horizons [chicken cacciatore]

chicken cacciatore.

I have a couple of goals for my kitchen-life as we head into one of my favorite times of the year.

  1.  Get something in the slow cooker once a week.
  2.  Broaden my freezer-meal repertoire.

So far, so good on both accounts.

My freezer meals are typically offerings from Trader Joes, macaroni and cheese, spaghetti pie, enchiladas, and chili.  But after a weeknight success with chicken cacciatore, I’ve started thinking about throwing this into the depths of the freezer.  It’s just sauce, veggies and chicken, and would flatten out just fine in a Ziploc bag.  You could prep some pasta, rice, or polenta the night you wanted to cook it, and call it a complete meal.

I had an unfortunate experience with chicken cacciatore early on in my cooking career.  Early on as in, I was 15 and cooking lots of “one pot meals” from my mom’s copies of Women’s Day and Family Circle.  I remember a watery sauce, and a ton of soggy vegetables.  I do not remember it well.  When I saw this pop up on Food52, I had full confidence that if anything could turn my chicken cacciatore past on its head, this would be it.  I was not wrong.  This is a rich sauce, that is neither watery, nor laden with soggy veggies.  Though it’s rich it’s bright, and it feels decadent, though it’s really a healthy option.  Winning all around.

To make 4 servings* you will need:

  • Olive oil to lightly coat the bottom of a large skillet with a lid
  • 4 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour seasoned with 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 slices bacon, chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper, seeded, cored, and sliced (ew, I never use green peppers, so I picked yellow here)
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded, cored, and sliced
  • 1 large onion, halved and thinly sliced
  • 4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 4 ounces white or brown button mushrooms, sliced (I doubled this because, SHROOMS!)
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground fennel seed
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • One 14- to 15-ounce can whole plum tomatoes
  • 8 ounces tomato sauce
  • 8 ounces chicken broth
  • 1/4 cup torn fresh basil leaves
  • 1/4 cup torn fresh oregano leaves
  • Grated parmesan for serving
  • Cooked pasta or soft polenta for serving
  1. Coat the skillet with olive oil, up the sides of the pan about 1/4 inch, and heat. Dredge the chicken thighs in the seasoned flour and brown each side until golden. Remove the thighs and set aside.
  2. Drain the oil from the skillet and add the chopped bacon. Cook until almost crisp and then add the 2 peppers, onions, garlic, and mushrooms. Sauté for a few minutes.
  3. Stir in the dried basil, dried oregano, ground fennel, red pepper flakes, and salt. Continue to sauté until you can smell the garlic, another few minutes.
  4. Crush the plum tomatoes with your clean hands to break them up and add to the skillet along with the juices from the can. Add the tomato sauce and chicken broth.
  5. Return the chicken thighs to the skillet, skin side up, and bathe the sauce over the pieces. Bring everything up to a simmer and continue to simmer, partially covered, for 30 to 40 minutes.
  6. After the 30 to 40 minute simmer, stir in the fresh basil and oregano. Serve a chicken thigh and some of the sauce with peppers over spaghetti or some soft polenta. Shower a little Parmesan over the top and enjoy!

*If I was making this to freeze, I’d probably double it, and either freeze in two portions, or eat one that night, and freeze one for later.

When You Need a Better Carb [merguez and sweet potato hash]

Remember when low carb and no carb diets started to become a thing, and everyone went ballistic for sweet potatoes?  I was never one of those people.  I think it’s because I was never one of those low or no carb people.  Why would I eat a sweet potato fry if I could have a regular french fry?  Who does that?

sweet potato hash.

Over time, though, I’ve come to recognize the sweet potato as an ingredient in its own right.

Sweet potato fries will never replace french fries in my life.  They just won’t.

But that doesn’t mean that sweet potatoes can’t be used as a star, not a substitute.

I adapted this recipe from Food52, which is a most-beautiful food site.  It was created by Merrill Stubbs, one of the founders.  I’d trust anything she comes up with.

To make hash for 4, you will need:

  • olive oil
  • 1 lb. lamb merguez, casings removed (Yes, you could, of course, use another sausage here.  I’d go the chorizo route.  Something chicken-appley would be to sweet with the already sweet potato, and regular Italian sausage doesn’t have the right blend of herbs.)
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks (hello, arm workout)
  • 1 tsp. thyme leaves
  • 2 ears corn, cooked, and kernels removed

Heat a tablespoon of olive oil in large cast iron skillet.  Add sausage, breaking up with spoon, and cook till browned through.  Remove to a plate lined with paper towels.  Add sweet potato and onion to the pan, with a pinch of salt.  Fry the onions and potatoes, stirring occasionally, but not too often.  You want a nice brown color here.  Cook till the potatoes are soft, about 10 minutes.  Add thyme leaves, corn kernels, and return the sausage to the pan, stirring till mixture is heated through.

Celebrate, Day 30

Today I got the best compliment.

pumpkin pie crumble.

The (Not So) New Girl said I don’t seem like someone who is living half out of storage, and half out of her real stuff.

pumpkin pie crumble.

Or something to that effect.

Which is so kind.

Now, let’s take a minute and recognize that my needs are being met in someone else’s home right now, so it’s not like I have to microwave Cup O Soup for dinner every night, and twirl it with a plastic fork, all whilst zipping up a tent in a nearby clearing.  Quite the opposite, in fact.  But it’s true, I’m not in my own space, and I’m happy to give off every appearance that I’m holding it together anyway.

One of the ways I do that is by baking as much as possible.  With dinner taken care of for me most nights, it’s the only cooking I do these days.  It’s therapeutic.

And on this day, it was for a beloved coworker, who is moving onward and upward after six years of being one of my favorite people to see every day.

It’s October, so my sweet contribution to her farewell lunch involved pumpkin.  Pumpkin Pie Crumble, to be exact.  I took a slice of this, loaded it up on my plate and took a bite.  Then I took another bite.  Then I remembered I just don’t love pumpkin, and I was done.  But other people said it was a winner, so I’ll take their word for it.

To make pumpkin pie crumble for 10, you will need:

For the crust and crumble:

  • 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons cake flour (or use a gluten-free blend)
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 4 ounces butter, cold
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/8 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 ounce butter
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans

For the filling:

  • 1 egg
  • 1/8 cup brown sugar
  • 15 ounces pumpkin, canned or homemade (cook homemade down so it is similarly thick)
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  1. Preheat oven to 350° F. To make crust, combine first 4 ingredients, then cut in 4 ounces of butter until you have split-pea sized chunks. Add the egg and combine until dough starts coming together. Dump into a greased, parchment-lined 9″ pan with removeable bottom, spread it out, and press it into the pan evenly. Bake for about 20 minutes, or until it puffs up, then settles down and browns a bit. Remove from the oven and let cool.
  2. While the crust is in the oven, make your crumble topping. Mix the remaining flour, sugar, brown sugar, and cinnamon in a mixing bowl. Cut in the butter until pea-sized. Add the pecans and combine until crumble mixture is starting to clump. Set aside.
  3. While crust is cooling, make pumpkin filling. In a medium bowl, combine pumpkin, sugar, salt, and spices together with a whisk or spatula. Add egg and incorporate. Add milk and stir to a smooth consistency. Pour over cooled crust, and gently sprinkle the crumble evenly over the custard.
  4. Bake until set, about 40 minutes. Cool completely before removing from pan. You can remove the dessert from the removeable pan bottom carefully, once fully cooled, and more successfully if you’ve lined the pan with parchment.

A Two Bite Break [peanut butter sandwich cookies]

Dear readers, it’s summer break ’round these parts, and that means I’m not tied to my computer like I often am in the colder months.  I’ve been digging deep in the archives to find  some recipes worth sharing again.  These all aired in the blog’s earlier days, but I’m pretty sure the only people who were there to see them go live were CV(D), Wooden Nickels, and Cari Faye.  They are my tried and true staples, and they’ll run for a few weeks while I enjoy the good life.  I’ll check back in with you later this summer dear readers.

xoxo,

Jennie

I vowed to bake less this summer, both because of the temperature and because of my waistline.

But it’s just not happening.  I can’t stay out of the kitchen, and I certainly can’t leave well enough alone.

Which is why when I read Cupcakes for Breakfast the other morning, I got an idea. Nikki sandwiched peanut butter and Nutella in between her shortbread cookies.

And I had been eyeing these peanut butter cookies on Food 52 for quite some time.  And boom.

Question:  Wouldn’t it be perfect to use Mrs. Wheelbarrow’s peanut butter filling in half of them, and use Nutella in the other half?

Answer:  Oh yes.  Yes it would.

Side note – I’m not one of those bloggers who always has her nails done.

Actually, I’m one of those bloggers who never has her nails done.

These rich, two-bite cookies have a crisp crunch that gives way to the silky filling inside.  You can’t go wrong with whichever filling you choose.  Nutella is a great complement to peanut butter, and takes the richness to another level.  On the other hand (or in the other hand, if you’re smart enough to double fist these cookies), the peanut butter filling is studded with chocolate chips that are like little gifts in the middle of busy day.  These cookies are a two-bite respite from whatever weekday craziness is in your life.  They’re a chance to indulge, albeit briefly, in something completely decadent, and totally worthwhile.

To make 40 sandwiches, you will need:
(essential ingredients in bold)

For the cookies:

  • 6 oz. unsalted butter (Mrs. Wheelbarrow wants you to use the best quality you can buy.  Try Plugra or Kerrygold, both at Whole Foods), at room temperature
  • 3/4 C creamy peanut butter
  • 1/2 C brown sugar
  • 1/2 C white sugar (just the regular, granulated stuff)
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 vanilla bean, scrape seeds (or, 1 tsp. vanilla extract)
  • 2 C all purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp. table salt

For the peanut butter filling:
*A note – this is the recipe given in Food 52, so it makes enough to fill all of your sandwiches.  I halved this recipe.

  • 8 T butter, at room temperature
  • 2 C confectioners sugar
  • 1 C creamy peanut butter
  • 1 C chopped chocolate chips, or mini chocolate chips
  • 4-6 T heavy cream (confession: I had skim milk, so that’s what I used)
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

For the Nutella filling:

  • Nutella!

To make the cookies, preheat the oven to 350 degrees, and line two cookie sheets with parchment paper.

Comine butter, peanut butter and sugars in bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment.  Beat at medium speed until smooth and lightened in color, about 2 minutes.  Add egg, beat to combine, and add vanilla.  Beat till combined and lightened again.

Stir flour, baking soda, and salt together in small bowl.  Fold into butter mixture gently, and mix just till combined.

Place rounded teaspoons of dough onto the pan, about 2 inches apart.  I typically use my regular spoons to scoop out dough, but here, I’d recommend using either a teaspoon measure, or a small cookie scoop.  Because you’re sandwiching the cookies together, you actually do need them to be the same size.  Press down gently with a fork to get that classic peanut butter cookie look.  After lots of cookie making, I finally figured out it’s a lot easier to slide the fork off when finished, rather than trying to lift off.

Pop the cookies in the oven for 10 minutes, until they’re just barely golden brown.  The cookies will still appear soft when they come out, so make sure they cool completely before handling.  While they cool, prepare the sandwich cream.

Beat the butter, sugar, and peanut butter together.  Stir in vanilla.  Stir in chocolate chips.  Add cream until consistency is spreadable.  Spread filling on one side of cookie, and press another on top.

I made two sandwiches before I buckled and ate one!

*Original post here.

The Tides Have Changed [lemony asparagus pasta with mushrooms and herbed ricotta]

We’ve settled into a new little routine at Casa Glass of Milk wherein my husband gets home from work and we spend some time cooking together and catching up on our days.

lemony pasta with asparagus, mushrooms, greens, and herbed ricotta.

Oh man, does it beat the old grad school routine wherein he returned at 11:00, scarfed dinner, and we went to bed exhausted.

lemony pasta with asparagus, mushrooms, greens, and herbed ricotta.

And man, do I love having someone to cook with.  It’s funny because I can’t explain how or why this happened.  It wasn’t part of our normal before, but I’m loving that it’s working for us right now.

Even if it does mean I’m on dish duty more than usual.

Tonight’s menu was Lemony Asparagus Pasta with Mushrooms, Greens, and Herbed Ricotta, from Food52.  When it started to come together, my husband wondered whether I’d made this before, and in fact, I make similar dishes all the time.  This dish, however, stands on its own as one for the ages.

To make lemony asparagus pasta with mushrooms, greens, and herbed ricotta, you will need:

  • 16 oz. pasta (I used tagliatelle, one of my faves)
  • 3 T olive oil
  • 4 large garlic cloves
  • 8 oz. mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 bunch asparagus, ends trimmed, and sliced into bite-sized pieces
  • 2 scallions, chopped
  • 1/2 C sauvignon blanc
  • couple large handfuls greens (I used chard, which is a tad sweet), sliced into ribbons
  • zest and juice of 2 lemons, divided
  • 2 T unsalted butter
  • 3/4 C ricotta cheese
  • mixture of fresh herbs such as mint and tarragon (what I used), or basil and thyme
  • 1/2 C grated Parmesan, plus more for serving
  • salt
  • pepper

Bring large pot of water to a boil on stove.

In the meantime, heat olive oil in large skillet.  Add garlic, mushrooms, salt, and pepper and cook a couple minutes over medium heat, till mushrooms are slightly softened, but not cooked all the way through.  Add asparagus and scallions and cook one more minute.  Add sauvignon blanc, bring to a boil, and cook till wine is reduced and asparagus is cooked through, about 4 more minutes.  Taste for salt and pepper.  Add greens and cook 30 seconds, till slightly wilted.  Remove skillet from heat and add lemon zest, juice of 1 1/2 lemons, and butter.  Stir till butter melts and everything is combined. There should be a bit of sauce

In small bowl, combine ricotta, herbs, and juice of half a lemon.  Stir till combined.

When pasta water is boiling, add pasta and cook according to package directions.  Drain pasta, and add to asparagus mixture.  Toss mixture till combined.  Add Parmesan cheese and toss again.

Serve immediately, and top with ricotta and more freshly ground pepper.

 

The Side of All Sides

When asparagus season sneaks up on you, you know warm weather is here to stay.  You can pack the sweaters and fleeces away and break out your open toed shoes.  And the thing is, when asparagus season, and thus, warm weather is here, you probably don’t want to crank up your oven to 400 and roast those little green spears.

pan friedDear readers,

IMG_4767I found a better way.

Chop up an ounce or two or three of pancetta, or bacon, if that’s all you have.  Cook on a skillet till brown and crispy.  Remove, bacon to another plate, reserving the fat in the pan.  Measure out 1/3 C panko breadcrumbs (this is way more because my hand slipped).  Acting quickly, add the panko, stir once or twice till crumbs turn brown (this happens almost instantly), and remove pan from heat.  Remove panko from skillet.  Give the pan a swirl of olive oil or a pat of butter and set it back over heat.  Place one bunch asparagus in skillet, and cook over high heat for a couple of minutes, say, 5.  Layer asparagus, salt, pepper, panko, and bacon on a serving plate.  Dig in to the best thing to happen since, well, roasted asparagus.

Thanksgiving Prep – Applesauce Cake with Caramel Glaze

Remember when I asked you to make applesauce?  Here is why I made mine:

So I could make Food 52’s applesauce cake with caramel glaze.  Isn’t it beautiful?

Although I had this flagged as a Thanksgiving possibility, it could work at absolutely any point in apple season because why would you wait to make a cake like this?  It’s an everyday cake, with a little panache.  And it helped me conquer my fear of caramel.

Making caramel is a process in which a daring home cook lets sugar sit on a burner until it starts doing things that are likely caused by one chemical reaction or another.  Making this sauce isn’t quite as intimidating, as it requires stirring, creating the illusion that you are somewhat in control of what is happening under your eyes.

Earlier this week, my interpretation of hunkering down for a hurricane meant that I would cook my brains out while I still had power and days off of work.  This would ensure my husband and I would not starve.  And if worse came to worst, I would have a little container full of extra caramel sauce to see me through.  The lights are still on here, dear readers, but the sauce is long gone.

Now how did that happen?

To make cake for 12, you will need:

For the cake:

  • 2 C flour (I have a hankering that swapping out some white for wheat would be a great idea, but haven’t tried that yet)
  • 1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper (I couldn’t taste it at all–some of the comments on Food52 say readers have upped the quantity and loved the results)
  • 2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp. allspice
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 C sugar
  • 1/2 C light brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 C unsweetened applesauce
  • 2/3 C vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp. vanilla

For the glaze:

  • 4 T unsalted butter, cut in chunks
  • 1/2 C packed light brown sugar
  • 1/3 C heavy cream
  • 1/4 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 C sifted confectioner’s sugar (and I never sift, but I did here, so my sauce wouldn’t be lumpy)
  1. Heat the oven to 350 degrees and butter and flour a 12-cup Bundt pan. Sift together the flour, baking soda, salt, pepper and spices and set aside. In a large mixing bowl or the bowl of a standing mixer, beat the eggs with both sugars until light. Mix in the applesauce, oil and vanilla until smooth.
  2. Using a spatula, fold in the dry ingredients, being careful not to over-mix. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for about 45 minutes, until a cake tester inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean. Cool the cake for 10 minutes in the pan on a rack before turning it out and cooling completely on the rack — make sure the cake is not at all warm before you make the glaze.
  3. TheRunawaySpoon wisely advises that you put a piece of foil or paper under the cooling rack to catch any drips before you start the glaze. Put the butter in a medium saucepan with the brown sugar, cream and salt and set over medium heat. Bring to a full rolling boil, stirring constantly. Boil for one minute exactly, and then pull it off the heat.
  4. Leave the pan to cool for a couple of minutes, and then gradually whisk in the powdered sugar until you have a thick, but pourable consistency (you may not need all the sugar). If the mixture seems too thick, just add a splash of cream to thin it out a little. Immediately pour the glaze over the cake, moving slowly and evenly to cover as much surface area as possible. Let the glaze set before serving the cake.

A Two Bite Break [peanut butter sandwich cookies]

I vowed to bake less this summer, both because of the temperature and because of my waistline.

But it’s just not happening.  I can’t stay out of the kitchen, and I certainly can’t leave well enough alone.

Which is why when I read Cupcakes for Breakfast the other morning, I got an idea. Nikki sandwiched peanut butter and Nutella in between her shortbread cookies.

And I had been eyeing these peanut butter cookies on Food 52 for quite some time.  And boom.

Question:  Wouldn’t it be perfect to use Mrs. Wheelbarrow’s peanut butter filling in half of them, and use Nutella in the other half?

Answer:  Oh yes.  Yes it would.

Side note – I’m not one of those bloggers who always has her nails done.

Actually, I’m one of those bloggers who never has her nails done.

These rich, two-bite cookies have a crisp crunch that gives way to the silky filling inside.  You can’t go wrong with whichever filling you choose.  Nutella is a great complement to peanut butter, and takes the richness to another level.  On the other hand (or in the other hand, if you’re smart enough to double fist these cookies), the peanut butter filling is studded with chocolate chips that are like little gifts in the middle of busy day.  These cookies are a two-bite respite from whatever weekday craziness is in your life.  They’re a chance to indulge, albeit briefly, in something completely decadent, and totally worthwhile.

To make 40 sandwiches, you will need:
(essential ingredients in bold)

For the cookies:

  • 6 oz. unsalted butter (Mrs. Wheelbarrow wants you to use the best quality you can buy.  Try Plugra or Kerrygold, both at Whole Foods), at room temperature
  • 3/4 C creamy peanut butter
  • 1/2 C brown sugar
  • 1/2 C white sugar (just the regular, granulated stuff)
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 vanilla bean, scrape seeds (or, 1 tsp. vanilla extract)
  • 2 C all purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp. table salt

For the peanut butter filling:
*A note – this is the recipe given in Food 52, so it makes enough to fill all of your sandwiches.  I halved this recipe.

  • 8 T butter, at room temperature
  • 2 C confectioners sugar
  • 1 C creamy peanut butter
  • 1 C chopped chocolate chips, or mini chocolate chips
  • 4-6 T heavy cream (confession: I had skim milk, so that’s what I used)
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

For the Nutella filling:

  • Nutella!

To make the cookies, preheat the oven to 350 degrees, and line two cookie sheets with parchment paper.

Comine butter, peanut butter and sugars in bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment.  Beat at medium speed until smooth and lightened in color, about 2 minutes.  Add egg, beat to combine, and add vanilla.  Beat till combined and lightened again.

Stir flour, baking soda, and salt together in small bowl.  Fold into butter mixture gently, and mix just till combined.

Place rounded teaspoons of dough onto the pan, about 2 inches apart.  I typically use my regular spoons to scoop out dough, but here, I’d recommend using either a teaspoon measure, or a small cookie scoop.  Because you’re sandwiching the cookies together, you actually do need them to be the same size.  Press down gently with a fork to get that classic peanut butter cookie look.  After lots of cookie making, I finally figured out it’s a lot easier to slide the fork off when finished, rather than trying to lift off.

Pop the cookies in the oven for 10 minutes, until they’re just barely golden brown.  The cookies will still appear soft when they come out, so make sure they cool completely before handling.  While they cool, prepare the sandwich cream.

Beat the butter, sugar, and peanut butter together.  Stir in vanilla.  Stir in chocolate chips.  Add cream until consistency is spreadable.  Spread filling on one side of cookie, and press another on top.

I made two sandwiches before I buckled and ate one!

Hello Monday

Hello Monday.

Hello allergies.

Hello Starbucks.

Hello no air conditioning, and 90 degree day.

Hello 10 hour workday.

Hello quiet house.

Hello new smitten kitchen recipe.

Hello Food52.

Hello good china.

Hello milk.

Hello spring peas.

Hello top quality butter.

Hello lemon zest.

Hello simple dinner.  And hello tattoo I need on my forehead: simple is always best.

I’m thinking of marketing this as a sequel to Goodnight Moon.  What do we think?

To make milk peas for 4, you will need:

  • 2 C fresh peas (fine, use frozen if you have to)
  • milk (the fattier the better)
  • butter (the best you can get your hands on)
  • the zest of half a lemon
  • salt
  • pepper

Place peas in a small saucepan, and cover just barely with milk.  Heat over medium heat until just simmering.  Watch the milk carefully as it takes almost nothing to boil over.  Cook 3-4 minutes and remove from heat.  Spoon peas into dishes, leaving some milk pooling at the bottom.  Top with a pat of butter, sprinkle of lemon zest, and salt and pepper.  Serve immediately.