the temperature at which sweets happen

Month: January 2009

Eat More Fruit

Eat More Fruit

Perhaps, one of the greatest compliments my Mother ever gave me was when she said, “You bake just like your Bammieroo!” Translation: You are too messy! I suppose this trait was inherited because my Grandmother didn’t teach me how to cook; if anyone it was […]

Creating Beauty

Creating Beauty

I’ve been very emotional the past couple of days. I realized last night (as I contemplated what I would do the following day) it was time to bake when lying in bed alone, sobbing, sounded like a viable and desirable plan for the day. I […]

Simply Delicious

Simply Delicious

Growing up I spent the summers between school terms visiting my sisters in Utah, or Mississippi, or Tennessee, creating some of my fondest memories. One summer I remember, I broke my sister Tina’s glass blender. They lived in a small remote town named Magee, in Mississippi about 45 minutes outside of Jackson, on one acre of land. Typically they hired a company to come with riding lawn mowers to cut the grass periodically, but the week I (let me make sure to mention – accidentally) broke the glass blender I received the pleasure of mowing the grass, by hand, with a push mower. Let me also make sure to mention again that this is Mississippi, deep, hot south, land of the fire ants. I had completed the front yard, stepped in 3 ant hills, my feet were swollen from ant bites; I walked inside and fell to the ground, “I can’t do it,” I sighed and cried and lamented. I distinctly remember my sister’s response, “You know, when I was your age I never let anyone or anything tell me I couldn’t do something! I could do anything.” I changed out of my flip flops and finished the back of the yard.

Okay, maybe this memory isn’t as fond as others.

More importantly that same summer, Tina’s kids and I were crazy about this one particular sesame street video. It was the 50th Anniversary video, and we watched it non stop day after day after day. I still love it! When a local Toys R Us store was going out of business a few years back, it was the first item in my shopping cart!

One of the classic songs on the video is: I’m an Aardvark!

I’m an aardvark, and I’m proud!
I’m an
aardvark, and I’m happy!
I’m an aardvark,
If I try to be specific
And a little scientific,

I am feeling quite terrific!

I’m an aardvark, fierce and free!
I’m an aardvark, standing bravely!
I’m an aardvark,
And I’m tough and smart and strong

And always right,
And that’s the way I’ll always be …

Until I meet another aardvark
Who’s bigger than me!

Every time I hear this song, I think of chocolate chip cookies. I don’t know, I can’t explain it.

I’m a cookie, and I’m great!
I’m a cookie, and I’m delicious!
I’m a cookie,
If I try to be specific
And a little scientific,
I am merely quite terrific!

Chocolate chip cookies are just simply delicious. They are quick and easy, and never disappoint.

Cookie: Chocolate Chip

3/4 cup Crisco
1/4 cup canola oil
3/4 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup white sugar
Mix until smooth and creamy – and continue to beat until mixture turns nearly white

Add:
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
Beat again until mixture turns white

Add:
3 cups flour (more or less depending on your altitude)
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt (2-3 shakes of the salt shaker will do)
Chocolate chips (I prefer handfuls of mini semisweet combined with handfuls of milk chocolate – or shavings of a brick of chocolate)
Fold into mixture


Scoop 4oz or more of dough onto a buttered cookie sheet, spread dough equally apart, and bake at 350° for 7-10 minutes. Wait 30 seconds, and transfer to cool on a paper towel (the paper towel will absorb any oil/butter from your pan).

I made these cookies primarily for a little friend of mine, Madyson, who is sick! But I made a second batch to bribe my primary class, which unfortunately didn’t work as well as I had hoped. The 4oz cookies are perfect for parents or primary teachers, because they are the perfect size for little ones. Plus – you can feel better about giving them several, because while the kids think they are getting tons of cookies, you know they are truly only getting the equivalent of 1 or 2.

Destiny Calls

Destiny Calls

I mentioned before that I have a compulsory addition to the television series Lost, and my hint in Monday’s Food Appreciation post regarding my excitement for Christmas, (in terms of excitement) was of course about Lost. This post may further reveal my complete obsession with […]

Food Appreciation

Food Appreciation

Every once in a while my husband and I attempt to perform a body cleanse. It’s a wicked three day process of combining starvation and drinking liquid muck, at least that is what I call any form of wheat grass. My sister compels me to […]

Fondly Reminiscing

Fondly Reminiscing

Right now, I’m pretty crazy about flaky butter cookies, and lemons just happen to by my favorite fruit, accent, accessory, flavor and substitute. I found this recipe in my trusty cookie cookbook,

but having no limes I plucked out my lemons instead.

I omitted the zest from the dough, and this has now become my new favorite shortbread cookie recipe. Shape the dough into a ball and roll in granulated sugar; press flat. Also, I opted for a glaze rather than frosting (this recipe is a frosting despite the tricky name) so I added the juice from one whole lemon, and doubled the powdered sugar; whisk until smooth.

Piece of Cake

Piece of Cake

Since November 21, and Pamela and Marie’s Art Shoppe, I have had an itch to test a recipe I came up with inspired by Fahrenheit 350° Sweet Crunch: Cashew. The New Year beckoned it’s arrival. Yesterday offered some disappointing news to end 2008; our hopes […]