Monday, April 9, 2012

Peanut Butter Nutella Cookies

Since becoming a mom, I have had little time to cook or bake.  Gone are the days where I would seek out new recipes for dinner or try using ingredients I never cooked with before.  Baking occurs mostly at night when the baby is asleep, if I have the energy, or when family is over to watch the baby while I bake.  The baby is almost 8 months old and I am slowly getting back into the groove of things.  I've told the hubby he has to cook dinner twice a week now.  I don't care if it's something easy like pasta or tacos, or if he wants to make breakfast or a sandwich for dinner, or even if he picks up something on the way home from work (which isn't preferred).  I just don't want to be super mom all the time take the baby to day care, working all day, picking the baby up from day care, feeding the baby dinner, cooking dinner while still holding, playing with and entertaining the baby, and then putting the baby to bed.  I was doing that 5 days a week for over 3 months now and it's only been 2 weeks that the baby is sleeping through the night.  Imagine doing all that while getting 7 hours of interrupted sleep.

Okay, baking has become a treat... Well, it's always a been treat.  It was always my comfort, something I did to cure the pain, let the mind go blank, and the body to be at ease.  Now, the "treat" is that I get to feel "normal" again.  I get to feel like I'm not a working mom and do something I love to do for me... kind of like yoga. :)

About a month ago, my girlfriend organized a bake sale for her future step daughter.  She asked friends on FB to make a dozen cookies to sell at the bake sale.  I decided to take an old recipe and make it new.  I added nutella to peanut butter cookies. 

  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup peanut butter (recipes tend to call for smooth peanut butter but I only have chunky lying around and it does just fine)
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 3/4 cups flour
  • 1/4 cup Nutella
  1. Combine butter, peanut butter, sugars, egg, and vanilla. Mix until well combined.
  2. Combine flour, baking soda and salt in a separte bowl. Slowly mix into the peanut butter mixture.
  3. Stir in Nutella.
  4. Bake at 350 degrees, about 7 to 10 minutes.
  5. Allow to cool for 2 minutes on the cookie sheet before transferring to a cooling rack.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Gardening = Food

Gardening classifies as food, right? I thought I'd start documenting the spring/summer garden this year so I don't forget what I did and what worked or didn't work. So far...

I took a stellar seed-starting workshop with Nan Sterman on 3/17 where we started seeds in a root trainer system and various pint-sized containers (e.g. strawberry and tomato clamshells). After finishing the workshop, I left with 16+ different types of vegetables and herbs.

Here is the list of them (in the root trainer):
  • Basil 'Cameo Container'
  • Basil 'Genovese'
  • Chard 'Pot of Gold'
  • Cilantro 'Santo Organic'
  • Dill 'Vierling'
  • Lettuce 'Garden Babies'
  • Eggplant 'Purple Fingerling'
  • Pepper, 'Rainbow Bell Mix'
  • Pepper 'Sweet Pimiento'
  • Tomatillo, 'Purple de Milpa'
  • Tomato, 'Gold Nugget'
  • Tomato, 'Mortgage Lifter'
  • Tomato, 'Roma'
  • Tomato, 'Super Bush Container'
  • Zinnia 'Benary Giant Mix'
  • Zinnia 'Berry Basket'

These were the optional ones (the bigger seeds):
  • Cucumber 'Armenian'
  • Cucumber 'Straight Eight'
  • Melon 'Honeyrock'
  • Squash summer 'Dark Green Zucchini'
  • Squash 'Horn of Plenty'
  • Pumpkin 'Winter Luxury Pie

And here is a picture of where they're at right now, approximately 3 weeks later:

I'm still trying to figure out where to plant all of them and whether I'll have enough room in the 2 raised beds.
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