Thursday, April 19, 2007

Cookie Panel- Again

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This week for Wednsdays Cookie Panel (sorry for you religious followers, as I am a day late) we munched on some delicious oatmeal chocolate chip cookies from a recipe submitted by Laurel. Two main differences in these cookies were that #1 there was Crisco in the recipe and #2 the way you add the ingredients. But I have to say... SO EASY. Caleb graced us this week with an official score sheet. It was amazing I must say, and when we are all done with this, I will post the results here for you all to see, compare, contrast, and examine.

Anyway, this weeks cookies did good accross the board, scoring numbers mostly in the 7's and 8's. Nice size, texture, visualy appealing... The dough was good normal cookie dough, and they were good plain or with milk. The one thing about these cookies is that they were much better warm right out of the oven. So at the panel we tried them normal, and then heated them up in the microwave for about 10 seconds and everyone agreed- better warm. Comparing these to the other oatmeal recipe that we have already tested (Maury's Famous Sunday Cookies) they were both good and about on the same playing feild, accept that these ones were much easier and less finicky to make. Three cheers for Laurels cookies. Try them for yourself!

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Laurels Famous Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

2c Flour
1c Sugar
1c Light Brown Sugar
1 tsp B Soda
1 tsp Salt
1/2c Crisco
1/2c Butter
2 Eggs
2c Otamel
1c Semi-Sweet Choc Chips

Add all of the ingredients from the top to the bottom (which is kind of backwards, but pay no attention to that!) Dump it and mix it without mixing the wet ingredients together first. I added the oats and the choc chips after mixing the rest. Bake at 375 for 10-11 minutes.

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Trouble

I have a little trouble maker on my hands. Every day around here there is some kind of episode. Whether it is pulling the moss out of my planter pots and eating the dirt, or pulling out the dirty laundry and throwing it all over the room, or dipping hands in the toilet, or unrolling the whole roll of toilet paper, or eating dog food, or rubbing poop on the windows (my favorite scandal of all)... we have episodes... and I have trouble! Here are some quick pics of what my day consists of... watching out for, and cleaning up after trouble!

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Commiting the crime...

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Fleaing the scene!

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Caught red handed...

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Aren't I so funny Mom?

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Sentencing himself to death by electricution as punishment!

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Good thing He is so dang cute or I would lose my mind!

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Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Cookie Wednedsay

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The Panel met today for a tasting of "The World's Best Chocolate Chip Cookie". The recipe was submitted by Holly. First of all, a major difference in this recipe is that you use milk chocolate chips as opposed to semi sweet. For Brooke, this was a pro. For me, this was a con. Just depends on what you like. First of all, I must say that so far this is number 1 in the "Best Cookie Dough" category. I could have eaten all of the dough if I could fit it all inside my belly because it was so delicious and smooth! These cookies are flat and dense. I tried some with less flour than the recipe called for (As per Holly's suggestion) and some with all of the flour. I didn't notice too much of a difference other than the ones with less flour were a little more dense and more gooey, but only slightly. These cookies were best dunked in milk- it just made them way better. Caleb ate one cookie dunked in milk, then tried one plain and by the time he was 1/2 done with the milkless cookie, he ressumed his dunking. They were yummy, like any chocolate chip cookie, but we agreed as a panel that there was nothing in paticular that really set these ones above the rest. To us, this was a good plain ole Chocolate Chip Cookie (C-C-C). Happy Dunking!

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I am such a cheese ball

The World Best Chocolate Chip Cookies
1 cup unsalted butter softened
1 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup sugar
2 eggs
Cream then add:
3/4 tsp. B soda
3/4 tsp. salt
1 Tbls. vanilla
3 cups flour
1 bag Ghiradeli Milk Choc. chips

Bake at 350 for 11 min. No more, no less.

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Hoppy Easter

We had fun on Easter this year. The Baby got his first Easter basket. It wasn't a very exciting basket, but he loved the grass.
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We went to brunch with the Tanner family at the Ritz Carlton, (Bad, I know... I think this year may have been our last year in attendance.) where the buddy got to meet the Easter Bunny and go to a real live petting zoo full of chickens, bunnies, pot bellied pigs, sheep, and there may have been a couple of other critters there that I didn't notice. I took a paticular liking to this little white bunny that had one floppy ear and one that stood straight up. He was so cute!
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We spent the second half of Easter eating dinner at my sisters house. She made a delicious meal and we lounged around topping the day off with brownies. (My Fave!) It was a fun day and my little guy was just too cute! His newest word is "Na Na" which I have discovered means Jelly Bean. He is obsessed with them! Anytime he sees them all you hear is a whiney "Na Na! Na Na!" Too funny.
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Saturday, April 07, 2007

A Few of My Favorite Things...

...Well material favorite things that is. I was pretending that my camera was a digital rebel- which it so obviously isn't and taking pictures of a couple of the vain things that i love on one of those days where everything just makes you happy. I love days like that. So here are a few of my favorite vain things...


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Bumble & Bumble hair products. I just love them. They work in my hair and I appreciate that- plus thy smell really good. The pink bottle of hairspray is probobly one of the best hair products to ever grace my hair. If you hate having a helmet head when you use hairspray and if you hate that crusty hairspray smell- then you will love this because it is the opposite! Find the whole line at Drugstore.com.


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My 3 favorite make up products. #1 Sugar by Fresh. It's a mix between chapstick and gloss. (Find it online at Fresh.com ) It's is the best ever. #2 Neutrogena's Moisture Shine Gloss. That describes it just about right. Not too sticky or too thick. (Find it at your local drugstore or at Drugstore.com) #3 Anastasia's eye brow pencil. It makes my eyebrows look more even since half of my hairs are blond and half are black! This one is just for blondes but they have them for most hair colors. I thank Krystal for the introduction to this wonderful product. (Find it at Nordstrom )


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My favorite earings. Balls of fun. They go with everything. I love navy blue. Wearing them just makes me happy.


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Helen Ficalora. Enough said about that, her neckalces are just to die for- find her at Helenficalora.com


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Tops from Forever21 . Thank you for making bright colors and cheap stuff to hide my growing belly! This shirt puts me in a good mood. D always whispers, "Taste the Rainbow..." to me when I am wearing it.

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Wednesday, April 04, 2007

The Official Cookie Pannel

I don't make chocolate chip cookies very often. I didn't even realize that until last week and I wondered why I don't make a delicacy as fine as chocolate chip cookies more often? Then I realized- too many choices- too little time. There are just too many recipes and they are all pretty good so I usually just wait until someone else makes them and then I feast! So I decided to hold a cookie panel.

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Every Wednesday Brooke, Caleb and I get together for sibling lunch. This is to ensure that we see each other at least once a week since we are practically neighbors and yet sometimes it just doesn’t happen. So, for as many Wednesdays as there are until I run out of recipes we will be having chocolate chip cookie tasting. This is a very difficult task. In order to be on the panel you must be able to use discretion, you must be a chocolate lover, and you must have cookie loving in your DNA. So as you could imagine, the panel was hard to pick, but I think I did a good job. We will be assessing all kinds of different things. Size, beauty, density, dunk-ability, edibility, best flat cookie, best fluffy cookie, best recipe including oatmeal, best recipe for pizookies, recipe complicity- so you see- you must be highly qualified to do our job. It’s not an easy one.

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We started last week (yes it has taken me a whole week to post this) with a famous recipe from back home in Alamo. Martha’s cookies. We found these cookies to be wonderful. They were gooey, and totally crave-able. You wanted to eat 12 but they were too rich. I stopped at 2 and I think Caleb pushed himself all the way to 6. Something to be admired indeed. I was still full from those 2 cookies by dinnertime. They were so dense they didn’t sop up milk very well. For you that like a chocolate chip cookie on the lighter side, these were a bit heavy for Brooke. “Too rich”, she judged. These would make an amazing pizookie. They have the perfect amount of gooey-ness to them. The kids all loved them too!

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This week we continued with MR’s Famous Sunday Cookies. This recipe includes oatmeal and is a Tanner family pleaser. I may be in betrayal to the family in saying this, but I liked last weeks better- don’t get mad! Caleb agreed with me only eating 2 cookies this week. (I think.) Brooke preferred these ones because they weren’t so rich. They were better to dunk with milk- a good absorption rate- and they were crispier as opposed to gooey. This recipe is also a bit more finicky- you have to follow a precise procedure to get the best end result. However, if you are into cookie eating for sport, you could eat a lot more of these ones- I know I have had many Sundays full from overdosing on these.

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Please feel free to join us every Wednesday to be a part of the cookie panel. I will post all recipes (This week and last weeks are below) and if any of you think that you have a really good chocolate chip cookie recipe then please pass me the recipe so I can try it out one week. We would like to be eating lots of cookies for many Wednesdays to come!

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Martha’s Cookies

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1 lb. real butter
1 lb. C&H dark brown sugar
2 cups white sugar
4 eggs
2 tsp. vanilla
2 tsp. baking soda
2 tsp. salt
6 cups flour
4 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips

Cream butter, sugars, and eggs together. Then add the remaining
ingredients. Bake at 350 for 10-11 minutes.

Just a little Martha hint. Don't pack the flour....kind of sift around
the flour and then get a loose cup full of flour.




MR’s Famous Sunday Cookies

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Cream:
1 lb. butter (softened)
2c Brown Sugar
2c White Sugar

Add:
4 Eggs (Room Temp)
Add one egg at a time mixing in between

Add:
2 tsp Baking Soda
2 tsp Baking Powder
1 tsp salt
2 tsp vanilla
Mix together.

Add 1 cup at a time, alternating ingredients:
5c Oats
4c Flour

Add:
1-2c semi sweet chocolate chips (or to taste)

Bake at 400 for about 11 minutes until edges are turning gold brown (These will continue to cook a bit after taking them out- I think because of the oatmeal?)

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