Monday, June 30, 2014

Giant Bakery Style Chocolate Chip Cookies


If you don't follow me on Twitter then you are an incredibly lame individual and we can't be friends. Also, if you don't follow me on Twitter you probably don't know I got a new day job. A new day job 45 minutes away from home that required me to work an 11-hour shift on Sunday.

Since you have none of that information, you will probably not understand why I woke up this morning all, "oh, crap, it's Monday, I gotta blog!" Please, don't be offended. I love to blog. Blogging is great, but sometimes unprepared people like me approach things a little, well....unprepared. Which is why I decided at, oh, I don't know, like, 10am this morning that I would bake you my world famous secret recipe chocolate chip cookies.

That plan worked out great until I opened the fridge and remembered I ate all my chocolate chips. In a speedy Plan B, I pulled out the crappy semi-sweet chocolate chips and decided to make mammothly monster-sized cookies instead.


Ta da!

Okay, so they're not as mammothly monster-sized as they could have been, but they're still pretty darn big. Consider yourself warned. I cannot be held responsible if you fall into a diabetic coma halfway through one of these cookies. I also cannot be held responsible for any damage incurred from you bouncing off the walls during your sugar high.


What You Need:
2 cups flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 cup melted butter
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
1 tbs vanilla
1 egg
1 egg yolk
1 1/2 cups chocolate chips

 What You Do:
1. Sift together your flour and baking soda and salt. Set it aside.

2. In a big bowl, beat together the melted butter, brown sugar, and white sugar. It might look a little funny. That's okay.


3. Mix in the vanilla and eggs.

4. Mix the flour and stuff into the butter and stuff.


5. Stir in the chocolate chips.

6. Scoop the dough out into slightly-bigger-than-a-ping-pong-ball-sized lumps and drop them onto a cookie sheet covered in parchment paper. (By the way, has anybody else noticed that ping pong balls can now be purchased in the booze aisle at the grocery store? Also, has anybody else ever thought about how hilarious the term "ping pong" is? It's hilarious. You should think about it more.)


7. Bake at 325 for 15-17 minutes, depending on how gooey you like your cookies.

8. Take them out and let them cool on the cookie sheet for a minute or two until they're mostly solid and then move them to a cooling rack.


Despite the fact that these pictures are awesome (duh), I feel the need to explain to you that these cookies, while not as awesome as my world famous secret recipe cookies (which, spoiler alert, are almost exactly like these ones),  are incredibly incredible. They are the cookie equivalent of a Kraft Singles grilled cheese sandwich--go ahead, rip it in half and watch the chocolate ooze out. You know you want to.

View the original recipe here.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

I Have a Garden!

Plants and I have never really been friends. Sure, I appreciate their existence and all, and they're nice to look at most of the time, but we were pretty much mutually oblivious. That is, until I got my first place and decided I was going to have houseplants. I went out and picked out the perfect houseplant. It was adorable and I was going to name it. I have no idea what I was going to name it because the damn thing died two weeks after I brought it home. I watered it, I swear, but somehow I couldn't keep that freaking pot of ivy alive.


I bitched and sulked for a while after that and decided to never have another plant ever again.

Yaknow, until I went to the store and saw all the adorable mini cactuses and stuff. Then I wanted a houseplant again. But I'm not completely stupid. This time, instead of getting houseplants, I opted for traditional outdoor plants.

I got a little carried away.

My yard now looks like a veritable jungle, and not just because we haven't mowed.

At the beginning of May I filled three planters with petunias (I think) and sweet potato vines:


They don't actually grow sweet potatoes, but they're nice to look at.

I also planted jalapenos....


and some other kind of pepper....


and a pot of peppermint....


and I started cilantro and dill and spearmint from seed. Two weeks later they were definitely not dead. Score!


Well, kind of. It took another month before I finally figured out the stuff in the spearmint pot wasn't so much spearmint as a very impressive weed. I went out and bought a spearmint plant instead.

Now my deck looks like this:


The seeds have gone absolutely crazy....


the mint is all splayed out and probably pissed I didn't give it a bigger pot....


and I have peppers!


So many peppers!



Also, thanks to a little Miracle Grow, the flower boxes have filled in pretty well too.


As if that wasn't enough, my roommate has also started a vegetable garden with cucumbers and corn and tomatoes and more peppers and pumpkins and mini pumpkins and funny-looking gourds. Me, I would have been totally fine with just having a giant gourd patch, but apparently that's "boring."


Even with all that greenery, I think my favorite thing in the entire yard is this piece of onion grass growing out of a cinder block.


What's growing in your yard? Do you have any ideas for all those peppers? Let me know in the comments!

Monday, June 23, 2014

Peanut Butter M&M Cookies

Guys! Today is the day! Are you excited? Are you? Are you? Huh huh huh?


Today I am finally giving you my Peanut Butter M&M cookie recipe. *the crowd goes wild* But first, I need to tell you a short story.

For some time now I have been on a quest to discover the world's best peanut butter cookie recipe. I started out, as everyone does, with the classic Peanut Butter Blossom cookies, adorned oh-so-sweetly with a Hershey Kiss. I didn't like those. So I tried my own Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip cookies. They were alright, but I didn't love them. After that I invented my own recipe while laying in bed half-asleep and attempted to bake them the next morning from my scrawled notes. I kind of forgot all about the egg, because, evidently, sleepy me doesn't care much for eggs. I tried a couple more times and tweaked the recipe to become what you're getting today, and I'm pretty happy with it. However, throughout this journey to find the perfect peanut butter cookie recipe, I have come to realize something very important about myself.....I don't like peanut butter.

Yes, you read that right. So long, Peanut Butter M&M cookies. So long, Reeses Peanut Butter Cup Oreos. So long, horrible peanut butter sandwiches my mother used to make without jelly. (I feel like that last one may have started my psychological aversion to peanut butter, but who knows. Maybe I had a peanut allergy in a past life or something.)


Since I've hyped this recipe so much lately--and since I invested so much stinkin' time trying to perfect it--I'm going to share it today whether I like it or not. People around me who like peanut butter claim they're delicious. If you don't like them, blame my friends.


Here's what you'll need:
1 3/4 cup flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup sugar
1 tbs egg replacer
3 tbs warm water
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup peanut butter
1 cup mini M&Ms
Note: I don't use eggs and used the egg replacer and warm water as a sub. I'm pretty sure it's the equivalent to approximately two eggs....or maybe an egg and a yolk....but probably two eggs, so give that a whirl and let me know if I need to adjust the recipe for egg-eaters.



Here's what you do:

1. Sift the flour, baking soda, and salt together into a medium bowl.

2. Beat together the butter and sugars.

3. In a tiny bowl, mix together the egg replacer and water and then beat it into the butter mixture. If you're using real eggs you can skip the tiny bowl....unless you really want to pour your eggs into a tiny bowl, in which case, follow your dreams and stuff.

4. Beat in vanilla and peanut butter.

5. Add the floury mixture into the peanutbuttery mixture in two portions, beating after each addition. Dough should be squishy. Be sure to test for squishiness by squishing.

6. Stir in 1 cup of mini M&Ms. Or mini chocolate chips. Or candied ants. Whatever you happen to have on hand is fine. I happened to have a few M&Ms.

7. Roll dough into approximately tablespoon-sized lumps, place on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper and squish slightly because squishing is fun.


8. Bake at 350 for 10-12 minutes.

9. Cool on a wire rack.

Makes roughly 32 cookies depending on how big they are and how much dough you eat.


How do you feel about peanut butter? Did your mother put jelly on your sandwiches? Was it delicious? I bet it was....

Thursday, June 19, 2014

I Fixed My Stove!

Guys! I did it! I fixed my stove!

Now, I know this isn't a cinematic wonder or anything, but I figured it would be easier to show you the process in video form rather than blog post. Thus, I present to you my YouTube debut:


For the last week, the only way to turn off my stove has been to flip the breaker, which has vastly limited my culinary endeavors. Luckily, the fantabulous dudes from Appliance Parts Pros provided me with the knowledge and appliance parts necessary to repair my stove all by myself.

(This is a very big deal for me. I called my roommate when the stove broke and not only would he not let me attempt the repair myself, but he told me not to order the part until he came home. I also told my mother I was going to fix my stove and she yelled at me and told me to hire an electrician. I showed them.)

It was actually a very simple repair; I just had to swap out the Infinite Switch. (I totally know what that is, by the way.) The whole process took me less than thirty minutes, even whilst trying to find camera angles. It saddens me that the people in my life have so little faith in my stove fixing abilities.

If any of your appliances are being bitchy, I highly recommend checking out AppliancePartsPros.com. Actually, if none of your appliances are being bitchy I recommend breaking one of them just so that you have a reason to check out AppliancePartsPros.com. The part I ordered was less than $25 with shipping, whereas ordering it directly from GE would have set me back $35 before shipping. And, speaking of shipping, I ordered the part on Sunday night and had it on my doorstep at 10am Tuesday morning. I was absolutely floored and cannot say enough about how awesome the Appliance Parts Pros are. (No, they're not paying me to say this, they're just that rad.)

Regularly scheduled blog programming will return on Monday with the long-awaited Peanut Butter M&M Cookie recipe. For real this time. I promise.

Monday, June 16, 2014

What's in My Fridge?

I was planning to do this post sometime next month, but my stove went wacko this week and now the only way to turn it off is by flipping the breaker. This means I can't use my oven without the stove running full speed for an hour and a half, which means I can't bake you cookies, which means I'm strapped for content, which is why today I'mma show you what's in my fridge. Yaaaaay!


I was planning to spend the next month unofficially cleaning out my fridge so there wouldn't be anything embarrassing in there when I showed it to the whole internet, but since desperate times call for desperate measures, today you are getting a completely uncensored look at the inside of my fridge. With the exception of the bag of chocolate chips that I took out and then started eating and never remembered to photograph. Whoops.

The first thing you'll notice once you find my fridge (it's that big thing buried under the pile of crap and the Zits cartoon) is its lack of organization. It was organized once. That was a long time ago.


The second thing you'll notice is the collection of salad dressing. I don't eat salad--nor does my carnivorous roommate--but somehow we ended up with five different kinds of dressing. I do not understand this phenomenon.


I also have Miracle Whip "dressing" and mayo.


Next up: pickles. Lots and lots and lots of pickles. And jalapenos. But mostly pickles. I'd love to tell you I bought the pickles for a recipe, but I didn't. I just love pickles. Mostly because they make for great dirty jokes. I did, however, buy the jalapenos for a recipe.


Then I have spaghetti fixin's and a jar of roasted red peppers.


After that, there are a ton of jelly-type substances. I don't actually eat jelly on anything, but somehow I have a fridge full of it.


And, of course, more condiments.


I also happen to have some ketchup left over from Brand Wars. If anyone has a recipe for ketchup ANYTHING, please let me know. (Just kidding. That would be gross.)



Moving on to the second shelf, we have a wide selection of fizzy beverages, including sparkling grape juice and peach Fresca. Peach Fresca isn't nearly as good as alcoholic peach lemonade, but it's okay.


Also, there is yogurt on the second shelf. The second shelf tends to be a catchall.....but then, my entire fridge is a catchall.


Then we have the big, tall shelf which houses the big, tall pitcher of iced tea. And water. And milk. But mostly the iced tea, because iced tea is amazing. (I've been having iced tea withdrawals since my stove has been on the fritz. It might be time for me to learn to make sun tea.)


Underneath the iced tea is the best part of the entire fridge: the cheese drawer. I love the cheese drawer. It holds the cheese. I love cheese. I love cheese more than I love iced tea. That's a big, big love. Right now my cheese drawer holds a package of Laughing Cow Creamy Swiss cheese, a package of American Cheese, a bag of cheese sticks, a box of cream cheese, some provolone, some sliced Swiss, two bags of mozzarella, a bag of mild cheddar, a bag of sharp cheddar, a little shredded Parmesan, and some stowaway fake meat and old pepperoni. (Someone please leave an old pepperoni joke in the comments.)


The next shelf is typically home to all the meat, but since I have the house to myself this week, that's where where my bagels are chilling (no pun intended). Bagels and lettuce.


Bagels and lettuce and apple sauce.


(All those eyeballs are from April Fools Day, by the way. They've been falling off things and appearing randomly all over my kitchen since April.)

All the way at the bottom we have two drawers: the candy drawer and the overflow condiments drawer. The candy drawer currently contains half a bag of Easter-themed mini Kit-Kats, two full-sized Kit-Kat bars, a strip of snack-sized Kit-Kats (I like Kit-Kats), some 3 Musketeers, a bag of old scummy Halloween candy, a bag of caramel filled Kisses, a bag of mint filled Kisses, two strips of snack-sized Hershey bars (for S'mores), chocolate chips, Andes Peppermint Chips, three Holiday Mint White Chocolate Hershey bars, a bag of mini Reeses, a bar of orange-flavored Moser Roth chocolate, a bar of chili-flavored Moser Roth chocolate, a bar of mint-flavored Moser Roth chocolate, and the remnants of our Costco-sized package of Kraft Singles.


The first shelf on the door holds the margarine and butter.


The second shelf usually holds water bottles, but lately it has become an all-around beverage holder to include my roommate's post-mowing Gatorade, lime juice, and whipped cream. Yes, whipped cream should be considered a beverage.



Finally, we have the booze. Since I don't have any super-girly alcohol right now, I've opted for tonic water (gin and tonics) and root beer (for root beer and rum).


And that, my friends, is my fridge! I'd love to snoop on yours, so if you do a similar post leave me a link in the comments!

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Reese's Peanut Butter Cup Oreos

So you know that recipe I promised you for peanut butter M&M cookies? I'm breaking my promise. See, I made a batch and planned to photograph them for you but somebody  *cough*myroommate*cough*  ate all but three of them before I could take out the camera.

That's okay, though, because we have Oreos!

And not just any Oreos. These are the long-awaited Reese's Peanut Butter Oreos.

Package of Reese's Peanut Butter Cup Oreos

Ever since both the Lindsay Lohans bonded over Skippy and Oreos in their isolation cabin, we've been awaiting the day Oreos came prefilled with peanuty goodness.

That day has come.

Freshly Opened Package of Reese's Peanut Butter Cup Oreos.

Except these aren't just filled with peanut butter, they're also filled with chocolate, and everybody knows chocolate makes everything better.

Inside a Peanut Butter Oreo

It's pretty hard to screw up an Oreo, but I give the dudes at Nabisco a lot of credit; these taste exactly like Reese's peanut butter cups. Like, you might not need to buy Reese's anymore.

Reese's Peanut Butter Cup Oreo Close-up.

Oh, who am I kidding. We'll always buy Reese's. Especially after these suckers disappear to the overcrowded afterlife of Limited Edition Oreo flavors in another five minutes.

Enjoy these while they last, and tune in next time for peanut butter M&M cookies. Or, you know, not. Who knows what my roommate will eat this week....