Category Archives: Baking

Called In + Cookies

This weekend was a little bit of a bust because Jason had to work on Saturday.  He was the on-call producer and the normal Saturday producer called in sick, so he had to go in.   I pouted about it for about two hours and then tried to make the most of it.  We had some plans for the day originally but nothing huge.  Since he didn’t have to be at work until three, we went out to lunch at The Local 7.  I had a beer because I was annoyed.  Not that that makes any sense whatsoever.


And I had a salad with grilled chicken for my meal.  Any healthiness that this salad might have had was cancelled out by the obscene amount of ranch I ate with it.  Hey, I like ranch dressing.


I always get my dressing on the side but I read somewhere that you actually end up getting more dressing in those little side dishes than you would if the dressing was directly on the salad. Food for thought.  Literally.

Alex chicken

Alexander had chicken fingers.  Once upon a time I thought I was going to be one of those crunchy hippie moms that fed her kid kale and quinoa (I actually love kale and quinoa personally) but then reality hit and the fact that he’s eating something is better than him eating nothing.  And maybe he’ll love kale and quinoa in 20 years.

Jason alex

Local seven

We are trying not to be mad that Jason has to work on a beautiful Saturday.  Alexander is not doing a good job of faking it.

After Jason went to work, Alexander and I went to a 1-year old’s birthday party where I knew no one but the host and the 1-year old.  Have I mentioned that I’m kind of shy?  And somehow I forgot my entire diaper bag (and wallet) and of course, Alexander pooped like the second we got there.  Of course he did.  Just to get Mommy out of her comfort zone, I guess.

I can’t think of a good segue into the fact that I made some cookies.  In fact writing about diaper changes and going into cookies is a pretty terrible transition.  But I made some cookies.  For some reason, Alexander’s daycare has Teacher Appreciation Week this upcoming week instead of last week like every other school on the planet.  So I did some Pinterest searching and came up with these Cookie Butter Brown Sugar Cookies. At first, I could not figure out why they were called brown butter cookies if they didn’t have butter in them.  Then I realized I was having a dyslexic moment and they were cookie butter brown sugar, not brown butter.  So yeah, cookies made of cookies.


I tried to sort of make them cute but kind of failed at that.  There’s a Target gift card in the envelope.  Maybe it’ll make up for it.

Gloomy Sunday Cooking

Yesterday was the definition of gloomy.  It was thundering all day and really dark out.  After having a really busy couple of days, it was actually pretty awesome to almost be forced to stay in the house all day yesterday.  I took a nap, did some laundry and was generally lazy.  I am big fan of lazy days on the weekend.

I managed to pry myself off the couch for long enough to make a decent dinner.  It helped that for some reason, Kroger had a huge amount of organic kale on sale.  This is not the norm at my Kroger, especially the organic part, but it made me happy.  I guess kale is trendy.

Kale on sale

Ginger garlic shrimp

Kale olives red peppers

This was Ginger, Garlic and Chili Shrimp with Kale with Red Peppers and Olives.  I forgot to put the sugar into the oil, garlic and ginger for the shrimp dish and I wish I hadn’t because it was on the salty side because of my omission.  However, I used low-salt olives (which I would not normally recommend, but bought them on a whim) so the salty shrimp went well with the lower salted kale dish.  I mixed everything together and all was good.

And then there was dessert.

BWV Round2 May Chocolate2

For the D week of Meatless Mondays from A-Z, the ingredient was dark chocolate.  To let you in on a secret, I actually much prefer milk chocolate to dark, but did buy some dark chocolate chips to bake with.



These were Flourless Chocolate Chip Chickpea Blondies with Sea Salt.  And now Jason knows the secret ingredient!  I put them in the fridge so I wouldn’t eat half the pan and then I realized that I like them even better cold.  Uh oh!

Three Five

Birthdays are funny.  The next age always seems SO much older until you turn it.  I distinctly remember when I turned 20 and I just couldn’t believe it and now, at age 35, 20-year olds seem like little kids.  I look younger, I know this and it’s good, I guess, until I tell people how old I am and they say something like, “You don’t look THAT old!”  Umm, thanks?  That was a very long-winded way of saying that, even though I feel like I’ve been celebrating all month, my birthday was yesterday.

I woke up early, hangover free, and got down to business: muffins.  Maybe I am old.

Better With Veggies

For the B cook round of Meatless Mondays A-Z, the item was blueberries, so I made these Vegan Blueberry Coconut Muffins that had been hanging out on one of my Pinterest boards.

Coconut blueberry muffins

And then I tried to be all artsy with them.

Coconut blueberry muffins flowers

You can’t beat a classic blueberry muffin.  Though they had coconut (in the form of oil and milk, as well as shredded), I couldn’t really taste it.   The only thing about eating a muffin for breakfast (okay fine, two) is that they didn’t have the same staying power as my usual egg sandwich does.  So by the time noon came around, I was starving.

Jason wanted me to choose a special lunch place and after going back and forth in my mind about whether or not I really wanted to go to Whole Foods for my birthday lunch, we ended up at Sushi Avenue.

Sushi avenue

Good, but Whole Foods has good sushi too.  Just saying.  After stuffing our faces with California rolls, we headed down to Candler Park to the Sweetwater 420 Festival.

Sweetwater 420 festival

Now, if you’re not from Georgia, a 420 festival probably has a totally different connotation (if you don’t know what I’m talking about, look it up, or if you’re my mother – don’t), but Sweetwater 420 is actually a super popular locally brewed beer and this is just a regular, family-friendly even, festival.

Sweetwater blue

We sat around for a while, listening to music and people watching…

Sweetwater music

Sweetwater music2

before heading back home where I promptly fell asleep on the couch for an hour.  Happy birthday indeed.

Happy Thanksgiving!

My family lives in Maryland (though my father lives in Florida half the time and my stepmother lives there all the time – don’t ask) and Jason’s is in South Carolina.  It just so happened that we saw my family two weeks ago and Jason’s last weekend.  With Jason’s work schedule the way it is, he actually had to work overnight on both the mornings of Thanksgiving and Black Friday and did not have the time off.  So, instead of going to Maryland (or Florida) by myself, which I’ve done in previous years, we decided to have a quiet Thanksgiving just the two of us in Atlanta.

I do miss being with my family during the holidays, but it’s sort of nice to just relax and not have to deal with traveling.  One year in a row is enough though and I’m already thinking that I need to spend a more family-filled Thanksgiving next year.  Anyway, just because it was just me and Jason here, didn’t stop me from making a traditional Thanksgiving meal.  We decided to have lunch instead of dinner, because Jason needed to go to sleep.

I woke up around 7 and got started on the cranberry sauce.  I decided to make this first because I wanted to incorporate it into my breakfast.  I don’t even normally really like cranberry sauce, but it sounded good to me this year and it was.  I used this recipe and omitted the orange zest (side note: I always type organic when I am trying to type orange – I just did it again!).

Cranberry sauce cooking

As an early Thanksgiving meal, I spooned some over some frozen chia seed waffles (Nature’s Path brand – they are pretty good.)

Waffles with cranberry sauce

After I got some food in my stomach, I waited for Jason to get home from work and then prepared the rest of the food.  He had purchased some turkey for himself.  I’m not exactly sure what he bought, but he said it wasn’t that good.  It made a good prop though.

Turkey legs

In addition to the cranberry sauce, I made caramelized onion mashed potatoes with vegan gravy

Mashed potatoes

Vegan gravy

and a crustless pumpkin pie.

Pumpkin pie

We also had dinner rolls and, in an effort to put something green on the table, leftover kale salad.  Cooking a meal for just two people with lots of different options is hard and in this case, the veggies definitely got left out.



We sat down at the dining room table and ate.  In hindsight, cloth napkins would have made this picture a lot nicer.


My plate…

Thanksgiving meal

Jason’s plate…

Jasons plate

I spy someone else who wants a plate.

Murphy begging

How can you say no to this face?


Murphy’s plate…

Murphy tgiving

Everything turned out really good.  I was nervous about the gravy because the recipe said you really had to whisk and whisk and whisk and, as it turns out, I don’t even own a whisk, so I had to do it with a fork.  Still turned out great though as did the pototoes.  I’m not normally a big gravy person because it’s usually meat-based, but this was great on the potatoes.  I liked the cranberry sauce, but I wasn’t sure exactly what to do with it.  Do you eat it straight up?  I ended up using it as a jelly and putting it on my roll and it was good.  We actually got too full to try the pie, but I’ll let you know!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Two Ingredient Dessert

We’re having a Halloween party at work tomorrow.  Everyone was asked to bring some sort of candy or treat.  I’m always kind of conflicted with this type of thing, especially when it comes to desserts.  Do I try to make something semi-healthy or do I say eff it and make something that I’m sure people will like?  Though I’ve made bean brownies before (my friend Tanya would disagree, but they were good), usually I opt for the unhealthy treat.  I’m much more confident to in my ability to find a good tasting healthy dish than a good tasting healthy dessert.  My go-to is Oreo Truffles.  Everyone loves these and they’re fairly easy to make with only three ingredients.  However, it’s kind of time consuming to make them, so I went with something easy that I found on Pinterest.  Easy and only two ingredients!

Cupcake ingredients

Well three if you count the powdered sugar on top.

My biggest concern making this recipe was that I didn’t really know what a jelly roll pan was.  I google imaged it and it looked like a cookie sheet, so I put it on a cookie sheet.

Lemon bars uncut

I ran into a little bit of trouble, however, when I tried to remove them from the cookie sheet, oh I mean jelly roll pan.  For whatever reason, the recipe specified an ungreased pan, and of course they stuck.


I managed to rescue most of them though and aside from being very sticky, they tasted pretty good.  Ignore the awful picture.  Don’t shoot with an f-stop of 1.8 even if it’s really dark or this is what happens.

Lemon bars

The original recipe said it made ten bars at 363 calories each.  I cut mine into 28 bars, so they’re significantly lower in calorie.  Oh, except that I ate three that couldn’t be rescued.  Maybe those don’t count.

I hope everyone is safe from the hurricane.  I was worried about my family in the DC area, but they are all fine.


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