baking · comfort food · Cookies · dessert · jam · peanut butter · Sandwiches · snacks · Yummy

PB & J (Cookie) Sammies

I had a to-do list today. It consisted of the following items:

  • Acupuncture for my tennis elbow (ouch)
  • Hang out with Carrie
  • Grab a delicious pastry
  • Buy a frame at Michael’s
  • Get liability insurance for the winter farmer’s market
  • Apply for winter farmer’s market
  • Write a blog post

The first 4 were done easily. I even went so far as to nap during my acupuncture appointment, so I feel as though I was being extra efficient. Then I went online to purchase liability insurance. I wanted to get signed up for my market of choice as soon as fucking possible, as I’m constantly worried that the spots are filling up (they are). I also need to sign up ASAFP because I really want a Sunday spot. If I don’t get a Sunday spot, I’m going to have to arrange things at work to make Saturdays work, and that’s a whole fucking thing. I am not alone in my desire for a Sunday spot, so I need to get my shit together now.  As I’m filling out the forms, it asks for my business name. Fuck.

Fuck fuck fuckity fuck.

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I’m currently registered under Kelsey’s Cakes, the rated G named I chose after the church-run farmer’s market wouldn’t let me use Eat Me Bakery (but it was totally cool for a whiskey bar to sponsor the market, of course). This means that I have to most likely re-register. This isn’t a problem, but it adds time, which I don’t have. So now I’m left sitting and waiting to hear back from someone that might be able to help me out at the Minnesota Department of Agriculture. Bureaucracy.

Those items will not be crossed off my to-do list today. Sigh.

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Hannah had a baby. That baby is Mira, and she is over a year old already. Here she is devouring a PB & J Sammie with reckless abandon. I wish this photo had sound, as she was making adorable little suckling noises… no doubt to make sure she got every last drop of jam. A girl after my own heart.

Anyway, I had my very last market day last Saturday. I mean, not my very last EVER, but my very last for this season. I ended up making these delightful little sandwich cookies on a whim the night before. I knew I wanted to do something with peanut butter and jelly, as they are my favorite flavor combo. No one really uses these flavors much, likely because so many kids are allergic to peanuts now. Outside of that concern, I’m not sure why this classic duo is so often overlooked. I mean, even I only have one recipe that contains these flavors. What am I even doing with my life? Oh fuck, I guess I also made a mug cake recently, didn’t I? Shit. I totally forgot. I guess I’m finally getting my shit together. Get ready for all things peanut butter and jelly! Pro tip: Add PB & J to your vanilla ice cream. You’re welcome.

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PB & J (Cookie) Sammies (original recipe found here)

For the cookies:

1/2 cup butter, softened

1/2 cup peanut butter (I used creamy Jif)

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup  dark brown sugar

1 egg

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 cup instant oats

3/4 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon baking powder

For the filling:

1/3 cup peanut butter

1/3 cup jam of choice (I used homemade raspberry)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line your baking sheets with parchment paper or a silpat mat and set aside. Cream together butter, peanut butter, and both sugars. Add in egg and vanilla and mix well. In a separate bowl, mix flour, baking soda and powder, salt together. Slowly mix into the wet ingredients before finally hand stirring in the oats. Mix until just combined. I used a food scale to get my cookies all the same size. If you’re doing this, I recommend 11g per cookie. If not, about a tablespoon of dough per cookie. I was able to fit about 15 cookies per baking sheet. Once you have all of them lined up on the cookie sheets, use a fork to press them down in a criss-cross pattern. Bake for about 10 minutes. Once fully cooled, add the peanut butter and jam and sandwich the cookies together. To avoid a soggy cookie, make sure to do a very thin layer of peanut butter on the jam side. Shovel them all into your face, without sharing a single one.

Makes about 24 sandwich cookies.

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DO THIS.

baking · chocolate · comfort food · Cookies · dessert · easy · Party food · quick · snacks · Swedish · vegetarian · Yummy

Havreflarn – Swedish Oatmeal Crisps

After more than a year of thinking about it, I finally did an Ancestry DNA test to find out more about my heritage. I’ve always been told that I’m at least 50% German, because my great great great grandparents immigrated here from Germany. Of course, no one in my family was taking into consideration that they could have immigrated to Germany from elsewhere sometime before that. Nope. We’re German, and that’s that.

Turns out that that is all a goddamn lie. My results came back last week and I am actually predominately English and Swedish, and only 15% German. While I am immensely disappointed in my lack of Norwegian ancestry (as I felt very at home in Oslo), I have fully embraced my Swedish heritage. After frantically emailing several new family members (none of which have emailed me back – fuckers), I immediately went on the search for a traditional Swedish cookie recipe. No joke, I found this recipe on Pinterest while using an elliptical at the gym. I’m not even a little sorry. I maxed out at like 20 minutes of exercise that day, and promptly ran home to start baking. I followed the recipe to a T, and my cookies still ended up looking like this:

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So I adjusted some things for the next batch. I decreased the butter by 2 tablespoons and made the cookies a little smaller. Don’t get me wrong, the original batch was still delicious. They just weren’t quite as pretty. Also, the recipe called for an entire stick of butter and it only made 6 cookies. The bowl with the dough had a puddle of butter at the bottom after I’d finished scooping it all out. It was fucking madness.

In addition to celebrating my newfound heritage, I’m also on the lookout for anyone on my biological dad’s side of the family. Not knowing who he is has never bothered me much, but now we have all this technology, so why not use it? I’m curious as fuck about this entire family that is out there waiting to be found. It’s crazy. I am the product of artificial insemination via sperm donor, so I’ve been messaging all the people I don’t know on my DNA match list (which contains over 400 people) with things like, “Do you know of any men in your family that went to medical school in Minneapolis in the 80’s and possibly donated sperm?” I’m like that lost duck in the children’s book looking for it’s mom. Except it’s my dad, and I have the internet. So I’ll just continue to message everyone on Facebook with names from my DNA list asking, “Are you my dad?” And maybe eventually someone will know something. Or at least check their fucking messages and respond even if they don’t.

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When I researched these cookies, I found out that Swedish women used to have coffee parties back in the day. At these parties they would serve seven different types of cookies. If they served less than seven, they were considered cheap asses. If they served more than seven, then they were showing off. Honestly, you’re lucky if you get one kind of cookie at my house. Who makes seven different kinds of cookies for one party? Those guests sound like a bunch of entitled bitches.

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6 tablespoons butter

1/2 cup sugar

1/4 cup flour

3/4 instant oats

2 tablespoons light cream (or half and half)

Preheat oven to 375. Butter and flour 2 cookie sheets, as these WILL stick.

In a medium sauce pan over medium-high heat, melt butter. Once melted, lower heat to medium-low and add in the sugar. Stir until fully incorporated. Continue with the flour and oats, again mixing well after each ingredient with a wooden spoon. Finally add in the light cream. Continuously stir over medium-low heat while the edges bubble for just a few minutes. Pour dough into a medium sized bowl and set in the fridge for 10-20 minutes, or the freezer for 5-10 minutes (dough will still be warm, but not hot). Each cookie will be about a tablespoon of dough. Press each ball of dough down a little bit with the back of  a spoon. The dough should still be a bit warm, so this should be easy. It will encourage the cookies to spread, which helps make them thin and crispy. Because they do spread so much, make sure to leave lots of space between each cookie. Limit yourself to 6 cookies per sheet. Bake for 8-10 minutes. Recipe makes about 12 cookies.

OPTIONAL BUT AWESOME: Dip half of them in melted chocolate. I used semi-sweet chocolate chips that I microwaved for 15 second intervals, stirring in between, until melted. Place dipped cookies on parchment paper to cool.

apple · baking · breakfast · brunch · comfort food · Cookies · Dating · dessert · easy · Fruit · jam · pie · vegetarian

Fruit Hand Pies

Okay, the online dating continues… errr… it was continuing. Then I decided that I hated everyone and deleted it. Okay, so here’s the thing… the guys I was meeting on Bumble would start out being very nice, but almost 100% of them would think it is okay to say something sexual to me before we even met. And then they’d get pissed and tell me to loosen up when I would fucking call them out on it. When we’re in the middle of talking about how we both like cooking, it is not appropriate for you to say, “It’s fun to cook with another person, but it turns me on when a woman cooks, so that’s a problem.” I’m sorry, what? Are you telling me that you can’t get through cooking with someone because you’ll get too horny? I don’t even know you. Gross. This shit is not okay. And when I called him out on it, he went on to say how he jokes like that with his friends all the time, and that it’s not a big deal because he’s just joking around. I think he was forgetting the fact that (again)…. I DON’T FUCKING KNOW HIM. How the fuck am I supposed to take a comment like that? We’re not friends… I don’t know his personality yet. We’d been chatting on a dating app for all of 10 minutes. Fuck. Get it together. Needless to say, he “unmatched” me for calling him out on his douche bag behavior.

So I decided that I’m done. I was getting really stressed out trying to fit dates into my schedule anyway. And the guys on the app were so aggressive about meeting immediately. I just don’t have time for that shit. I have 3 jobs, plus all the yoga classes to attend, and some amazing friends that I’d rather be spending time with than strangers that may or may not offend me within moments of meeting. I’m taking a break.

Last Sunday I decided to spend the entire day doing yoga, which is something I used to do every Sunday, but haven’t been able to in the last 2ish months. It felt so amazing to just spend the whole day doing exactly what I wanted to be doing, and not having any responsibilities. And I got to do Acro for several hours at the park! This is me in my happy place…

I made these hand pies when Cortney was visiting. My amazing friend (and Acro teacher!) Alyssa gave me the recipe. She wrote it down for me, but didn’t know specifics about timing/measurements for a lot of it. I made 3 batches, but one of them ended up more like cookie dough (I added too much sugar), which was actually awesome (according to Cortney), so I’ll share that mistake in the recipe below as an option. This recipe could easily be made into savory pies, too… just leave out the sugar.

Fruit Hand Pies

For the crust:

1 cup flour (optional: substitute 1/4 of the flour for 1/4 cup sugar)

1 stick butter, frozen

2 tablespoons sugar

Ice cold water

For the filling:

Follow the filling instructions from the apple pie blog post (found here), but cut it down to about 1/4 of the recipe. Once mixed, refrigerate until cool.

For the raspberry filling, it is just equal parts raspberries to sugar (start with 1 cup of each). Boil that until it’s a thickish sauce. You’ll also want to add a few fresh berries to the filling, so make sure to save a little! Refrigerate until cool.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grate the butter with a cheese grater. Throw the grated butter into a bowl, and stick it in the freezer for an hour. After the hour, mix the flour and sugar with the butter, then slowly add ice water until it reaches a dough-like consistency (about 1/4 cup). Wrap the dough in plastic wrap, and freeze for another hour.

Flour a surface and roll dough out pretty thin (thinner than regular pie dough… use your best judgement). Cut into squares, circles, rectangles, or any shape that speaks to you. Scoop some (cold) filling onto half of the square of dough, and fold it over, pressing a fork into the edges to seal it. Sprinkle with a little more sugar, and bake on a greased cookie sheet for about 40-50 minutes (until they are golden brown). Bring them to your local Acro jam (don’t know what that is? Check out AcroYoga Minneapolis)!

Also, serve this warm with ice cream. I didn’t do that, and I’m sad about it every day.

 

baking · comfort food · Cookies · dessert · vegan · vegetarian

Vegan Snickerdoodle Cookies

I’m not sure what the deal is, but I had horrendous anxiety tonight. Like, I was fine all fucking day, but then this evening hit, and I just lost it. Does this happen to anyone else? I ended up calling Cortney in a panic, and she calmed me right down. I have the best friends in the world, for real. Even when I’m being irrational and frantic, they always reassure me that my feelings are valid, and that it’s important to just let myself feel things. I think that is worth repeating, since it’s only been within the last few years that I have come to accept this…

Regardless of how you are feeling, or how other people might feel in your situation… even if it seems silly or irrational… please know – your feelings are valid. Always. 

It probably doesn’t help that I keep cramming 25 things into my days, instead of just giving myself time to relax. I have 3 separate friends coming to visit in the next week, plus the teacher training, plus work, plus yoga, and trying to fit in time to see my mom once in awhile. It’s a disaster mostly. Seems appropriate, considering I am mostly a disaster all the time. It’ll all work itself out… right?

On a whim, I decided to make these cookies for my Yoga Teacher Training class today. Class started at 11:30am, and I got up a 7:15am to get all my shit done. This meant going cat sitting, stopping at the farmer’s market, doing laundry, and baking these cookies. I was pleasantly surprised with my mad time management skills when everything was done, except the cookies, by 9:45am. I was like, “Fuck yeah! I have so much time to bake! This’ll be done in like 40 minutes.” So I started mixing everything together without reading the full recipe first. I got all the way to the end before I read, “Refrigerate dough for 1 hour.”

W.T.F.

It was like 10:10am at this point, and I needed to leave my apartment by 11:20am. PANIC.

But I’m a fucking pro. So, fuck yeah those cookies made it to class. Maybe they were too hot to have a lid on their Tupperware container, but they fucking made it.

Unrelated: Can someone please fucking help me get my air conditioner unit into my window? I’m fucking melting over here.

Also unrelated: I nailed my fucking headstand this week!

 

Vegan Snickerdoodle Cookies

1 1/2 cups flour

2 tablespoons corn starch

2/3 cup granulated sugar

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

4 tablespoons flaxseed meal

4 tablespoons almond milk

6 tablespoons cashew butter

6 tablespoons coconut oil

1 teaspoon vanilla

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

Warning: This recipe requires refrigeration of the dough for 1 hour! You need to know that before going in.

In a large mixing bowl, combine flour, corn starch, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Mix well. In a smaller bowl, whisk together flaxseed meal and almond milk, then add cashew butter, oil, vanilla, and cinnamon. Whisk together until all ingredients are fully incorporated. Add wet mixture to dry ingredients. You’ll need to use your hands a little for this one… add about a tablespoon of water if not holding together, and knead with your hands. Once all the ingredients are fully mixed in, and dough can hold together in a ball, wrap with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour.

Mix equal parts cinnamon and sugar into a small bowl (I did 3 tablespoons of each). Roll balls of dough (1ish inch in size) in the cinnamon/sugar mixture, and arrange on a cookie sheet. These cookies will not spread, so feel free to cram as many as you can get onto one cookie sheet. Press each one down with a fork, and bake at 375 degrees for 11 minutes.

Let cool, then shovel them all into your face. Be shocked that they don’t taste like shit (because they’re vegan).

 

baking · breakfast · brunch · chocolate · comfort food · Cookies · dessert · easy · quick · snacks · vegetarian · Yummy

Salted Chocolate Chip Cookies

So my mom finally wrote down her chocolate chip cookie recipe. If you remember, she’s not great at measurements. She doesn’t understand that baking is science. In fact, she scoffed when I told her.

In her defense, the cookies always turn out perfect. I figured her baking skills are genetic, so my version of these would also be perfect.

But then Hannah fucked it all up.

The brown sugar I had was rock hard. I’m not allowed to go to the store, and I knew there was a way to soften it… but I couldn’t remember how. Hannah was sitting in the background drinking White Russians. She hears me complaining, and says very matter-of-factly, “Just microwave it with a little water. It’ll be fine.” Rather than take the 2 minutes to Google a real method of softening brown sugar, I take her advice. The sugar at the bottom of the bowl melts into brown goo, and the sugar on top stays rock hard. Sigh. When I yelled at Hannah, she responded with, “Kelsey, I’ve never baked anything in my life. Why would you listen to me?!”

She just sounded so confident. She’s an excellent bullshitter.

In the end, the cookies turned out acceptable. Next time I bake, Hannah is not invited.

Salted Chocolate Chip Cookies

3/4 cup white sugar

3/4 cup brown sugar, packed

2 sticks of butter, softened (My mom says to melt them all the way, but I know that’s bullshit)

Splash of vanilla

2 eggs

2 3/4 cup flour

Dash of salt

Teaspoon baking soda

2 cups dark chocolate chips

Coarsely ground sea salt

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cream together both sugars, butter, and vanilla. Add the eggs, one at a time, and beat until fluffy. In a separate bowl (or if you’re my mother, the same bowl) mix the flour, salt, and baking soda together. Pour flour mixture into wet ingredients and mix well. Remove from mixer, and fold in chocolate chips. Form into 1 or 2 inch balls, and place on a cookie sheet. Add a few pieces of salt to the top of each ball of dough, and press in slightly (so they don’t fall off).  Bake for approximately 10 minutes. Makes about 3 1/2 dozen cookies. Make sure to eat at least 10 while they’re still warm and gooey.