Thursday, April 19, 2012

s'mores stuffed cookies...revisited

I've made these S'mores stuffed cookies a few more times and have since developed a S'mores Stuffed Cookie science if you will.

A few tips and changes...
Instead of breaking the graham crackers into smaller shapes, I stick a whole S'more inside the cookie (1 graham cracker sheet broken in half, 2-3 pieces of Hershey Chocolate, and 1 marshmallow cut in half lengthwise). I thought putting a smaller cookie would make these a little more manageable, but I've found it works better with a full size.

When assembling your cookie, make the bottom layer wider in diameter than the S'more inside (or Reese's Peanut Butter Cup in this case). Then pick up the whole thing and fold up the edges to enclose S'more. Add extra dough as needed. 

This results in cookies that are about the size of my open hand (much more fun and impressive)...and much better looking than my original version.

Bake for 22-24 minutes or until browned on top and dough is cooked through. Gently move onto a cooling rack for a few minutes. Serve warm, of if you need to, microwave for 10 seconds.

Unbaked cookies can be stored in the freezer (in case of an emergency). Taking them from freezer to oven actually results in really fluffy cookies in my experience.

I'm brainstorming and would love your ideas! What else can would you want to see baked inside a cookie? 

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Wednesday, April 18, 2012

flower fields forever

The Flower Fields are open till May 13this year!
I had a bit of a Grand Canyon moment when I saw this in person. At some views, it just seemed to go on forever. They also have wagon rides, tulip fields, giant sunflowers, and different exhibits (succulents and orchids when I was there).  So if you're a gardening geek like me, are looking for a good photo op, or need somewhere to take your mom for Mother's Day, go here! It's gorgeous. We didn't make it out to the Strawberry Fields which are located right next to the flower fields, but they apparently have strawberry picking. 

5704 Paseo Del Norte
Carlsbad, CA 92008

$11.00 for Adults, $10.00 for Seniors 60+, $6.00 for Children 3-10.
Children 2 and under are free.

You can purchase tickets on site or online here!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

berry crisp

Spring = Sweet, tart, fresh berries (+ my favorite cookies) = Mixed Berry Amaretti Crisp. 
I'm still going through this book and loving every single recipe I've tried.

3/4 cup flour
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
3/4 cup crushed Amaretti Cookies (about 16 cookies)
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 cup toasted almonds slices
1/2 cup unsalted butter, cut into 1/2 inch pieces, then chilled in the fridge.

You can make the topping in a food processor, but I did it with a fork/by hand. In a bowl, combine the flour, both sugars, cinnamon, almond slices. Crush amaretti cookies and add to the mixture. Add pieces of butter and combine till the dry ingredients start to hold together.

6 cups mixed berries
1/3 cup sugar
2 tablespoons AP Flour
2 teaspoons lemon juice 

Arrange fruit in a baking dish, ramekin or bread pan in my case. (The juice from the fruit will come out during baking, so to prevent a mess, place a piece of foil under your dish to catch any spillage; or you can just fill your dish with less filling). Sprinkle with a generous amount of the topping mixture (enough to cover all the fruit). Bake at 375 degrees F for 40-50 minutes 
Serve warm with a scoop of Vanilla Ice Cream

(I've tried the peach version and loved it as well. You can find that version and original recipe here)

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Tuesday, April 10, 2012

jiro dreams

I watched this movie this weekend. In short, it was awesome and beautiful...and had me laughing at unexpected moments. And now, I'm thinking about mastery, hard work...and how to devise a plan to get a seat at his restaurant. I'm thinking I'll need a Japanese speaker, about $1,000...and a banana suit for good measure...

In the meantime, I'll spruce up on this sushi etiquette I stole from the amazing Janet (another food artist, naturally).

Monday, April 9, 2012

complementary colors


Have you guys tried purple carrots? Someone gave me some to try a while ago and though I don't taste a difference, they're pretty to look at, no? I'm digging the golden beets though (pun intended)...I also like that my hands and towels (and sink, face, clothes, kitchen handles) weren't stained pink after I finished peeling/chopping them. (P.S.: Why does the phone always seem to ring or my face start to itch when I'm in the middle of cutting beets?)

Anyways, I'm kind of a sucker for things like this...funky looking foods, miniature zucchinis, oddly shaped apples, cherimoyas, Okinawan sweet potatoes, and the like...

Sometimes it's just fun to cook with food that makes you feel like you're living in a Dr. Seuss book. I recommend it!

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