Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Mexican Wedding Cookies

Last Thursday was a rainy, dreary day here at the home of the lazy dog. WD was at work and Big pup was at school. It was just me and Little pup. Home alone and hungry. Not a good combination. Little pup suggested that we make chocolate chip cookies and I suggested we make Mexican Wedding Cookies. And I won. Because I'm the mommy and I said so. (And because we were out of eggs but that's beside the point.)

As I shaped the dough into a log, Little pup licked the bowl clean, and I told him what it is about these cookies that makes them so good. "I love how the salt in the butter--and the extra you add to the dough--pairs up with the powdered sugar. I love that sweet and salty contrast of the cookie. It's so good. It's perfect with a cup of hot tea. And, you know, The Barefoot Contessa says under no circumstances should you ever use imitation vanilla, but unless she wants to personally deliver vanilla beans or pure vanilla extract to my house, I'm using imitation vanilla. And I bet Jeffrey can't even tell the difference..."



"Are you talking to yourself?"

Hmmmph. A 4 year old just doesn't appreciate good conversation.

Mexican Wedding Cookies--also known as Russian Tea Cakes

2 1/2 cups flour

1/4 tsp salt

1 cup finely chopped pecans

1 cup softened butter

1/2 cup powdered sugar (plus extra for rolling cookies in)

2 tsp vanilla

Mix flour, salt and pecans together, set aside. Beat butter and 1/2 cup powdered sugar until fluffy. Add vanilla. Gradually mix in dry mixture. Shape into a log and cut into 1/2 inch slices. Place cookies onto a cookie sheet. Bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes. Let cool. Dredge cookies in powdered sugar.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Lemon Garlic Broccoli

Did you know that broccoli can be served without velveeta cheese? I didn't. And did you know that broccoli served without velveeta cheese can still taste great? Well, no, I had no idea. Until I came across this recipe for Lemon Garlic Broccoli. You might just never use velveeta again. Okay, maybe not never. At least a month. Or two--it's that good.

1 (14 oz) bag frozen broccoli florets
1/4 cup water
2 TBS olive oil
1 TBS lemon juice
1 tsp minced garlic
1 tsp salt

Microwave broccoli and water for 6 minutes, covered. Drain when done. Mix together the rest of ingredients and pour over broccoli. Cover and let sit for a couple of minutes.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Ice Cream Sandwiches

My Granny B turned the big 9-0 on March 20th. She's lived by herself for over 30 years now, still gets around good, is in fairly good heath, and has a great sense of humor. We all got together a couple of weeks ago at a restaurant to celebrate her birthday. Everything was going great until, well, someone asked her what she and Grandpa B did for fun when they were dating and she said, "We always told momma that we were going to church and well, (looks around) sometimes we made it there and (lowers voice) sometimes we didn't (wink wink implied)." My mother and I simultaneously began stuffing cornbread into our ears because, seriously, we did not need to hear that.

Growing up, we had dinner at Granny B's house every Sunday. One of my favorite desserts that she made was Ice Cream Sandwiches. Besides being so yummy, I think part of their appeal is that they're individually wrapped. They're just so darn cute. Cute enough to eat.

4 cups Rice Krispies
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
1/2 cup corn syrup
vanilla ice cream (softened)

Blend corn syrup and peanut butter well. Add cereal and stir. Press mixture into a greased 9x13 baking dish. Put into freezer for 15 minutes or until firm. Cut into 12 squares. Make sandwiches. Wrap with aluminum foil. Store in freezer.