Saturday, December 16, 2006

Internet Outage

Sorry folks, no news available for Friday because of an Internet outage thanks to AOL, the less-service-more-monopoly people.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

From the Toddler Files

As we relaxed on the floor together before nap time yesterday, the youngest of my 17-month-old twins pointed to her knee and said, "Knee." Encouraged by my response, she pointed to her sister's knee and said, "Knee." Realizing she was on a roll, she pointed to her mouth and said "Mouth." Excited by her sense of accomplishment, she then proudly stuck her finger up her nose and said, "Nose."

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

My Kind of Cooking

I like to shop at estate sales. A couple of years ago, I came across a lovely little recipe book that was charmingly vintage, with front cover illustration, printed tabs and hand-written recipes. It was so lovely, in fact, I asked if they were sure they wanted to sell it. They said yes, so I carried my little treasure off home.

More interested in its look than its contents, I occasionally gazed upon it admiringly, but never explored it thoroughly until about a week ago when I opened it and found that the only things behind the basic cooking advice and recipe tabs were recipes for desserts and spaghetti and the wine guide seen above.

Now that's my kind of cooking!

Monday, December 11, 2006

Today's Special Feature -- The Virtual Cookie Exchange

Fun, fun, fun 'til Mama takes the cookies away.

The recipes I have posted for today's cookie exchange make me think of fun, the first (Doggie Cookies) because of the all the tricks and happy doggie smiles they inspire, the second (Microwave Pecan Toffee) because it comes from my Aunt Jean, and the third (Date Pinwheel Cookies) because of the many family memories they bring flooding back. Their sweet aroma takes me away.

Doggie Cookies -- Don't Forget Fido

Don't forget Fido this holiday season. These fun cookies make an apparently tasty treat. I can't recall where I picked up the recipe, but it has been a hit with our poochie pals.


- 2 cups whole wheat flour

- 1 Tablespoon baking powder

- 1 cup peanut butter

- 1 cup milk


Preheat oven to 375. In a bowl, combine flour and baking powder. In another bowl, mix peanut butter and milk, then add dry ingredients and mix well. Place dough on a lightly floured surface and knead. Roll dough to 1/4 inch thickness and use a cookie cutter to cut out shapes. Place on cookie sheet and bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until lightly browned. Cool, then store in an airtight container.

And in show of appreciation:

Apparently the appropriate way to claim something as your own is to rub your fanny on it. I will keep this in mind next time someone hits on my husband.

Aunt Jean's Microwave Pecan Toffee

Here is a recipe you will love for Pecan (or you can use almonds) Toffee. It's quick & easy.


First, butter a cookie sheet and chop or break up the nuts. Then these are the ingredients--

½ lb. Butter (no substitutes)

1 C. Sugar

2 Tablespoons water

1 Tablespoon white corn syrup

1 & ½ C. Broken or chopped pecans

1 pkg (6 oz.) Milk Chocolate chips

Melt butter in 2 quart glass bowl (takes nearly 1 & ½ minutes). I use one of those that looks like a big measuring cup with a handle. Add sugar, water and corn syrup. Stir thoroughly until creamy, like lemon pudding. Cook 4 minutes on high. Stir. Cook 3 minutes on high. Stir.

Continue cooking on high for one minute at a time until mixture is a golden brown (about the color of khaki). This takes two times on my microwave - may take more or less time on yours. If you cook it too long, it separates and is oily and sugary instead of crunchy! When it is ready, add nuts and pour immediately onto a greased cookie sheet. Spread quickly (it won’t cover the whole sheet). Mixture hardens rapidly. If it is too thick, just mash it down with your spoon. Sprinkle hot mixture with the chocolate chips, and spread the chocolate with a knife as it melts. Let cool on the counter for about an hour; then in the refrigerator for at least an hour. Break into pieces and serve.

Date Pinwheel Cookies

My great-grandmother, Mamaw P., passed down the recipe for these delicious date filled cookies to my grandmother, Mimi, who passed it on to my mother, who passed it on to me. Not only are they yummy, but beautiful too. They look like you just swept them off the baker's shelf and onto a plate. The spirals of date and nut filling surrounded by cookie always make me think of holidays and big family gatherings.

I hope your family will enjoy them as much as mine has.

(Note: My great-grandmother cooked with instructions such as a "pinch" of this and a "dash" of that and "cook it until it looks like this," so the recipe may not be the most detailed.)


- 2 cups chopped dates
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup chopped pecans

Mix together, cook until thick and cool.

Cookie Dough

- 1 pound light brown sugar
- 1 cup Crisco
- 3 eggs
- 4 cups flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt

Cream sugar and Crisco together. Add eggs. In a separate bowl mix flour, baking soda and salt. Combine all ingredients. Chill dough 1 hour. Roll out. Spread filling. Roll up dough. Wrap in wax paper. Chill 3 hours. Slice in 1/2 inch slices. Place on cookie sheet 2 inches apart. Bake at 375 until golden brown.

Mad Props to Jenn for the Virtual Cookie Exchange

The great idea for a virtual cookie exchange was brought to us by Jenn of Jenn's Journal. Thanks Jenn!

For more recipes on the blogs of other cookie exchange participants, just click here.

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