Wednesday, February 04, 2009

I swear!

I really do have some proper posts coming down the pike (woo...nice alliteration!), but I am suffering from a raging ear infection, plus, the new semester is already wearing me out! But the weekend is coming, praise be, and I hope to get caught up then--on sleep, on household chores, and yes, on blogging.

In the meantime, I have been meaning to show you all something very fun. As you may remember, over Christmas, I discovered the fabulous jalapeno Bubba Burgers. So, as is my way, I dropped the company an email, telling them how much I enjoyed their fine product, and describing my "recipe" for how best to enjoy those spicy, Texas-shaped patties. I got a very nice reply from a real person at the company, thanking me for my email and asking if they could use it (and my recipe) on their website. Of course, I told them they could, and in return, they surprised me by FedEx'ing all of THIS swag:

That's two short-sleeved and one long-sleeved tee shirt, four pens, four key chains, three dollar-off coupons, and one coupon for a free box of Bubbas! SCORE! See how it pays to be nice? :-)

Speaking of Bubba food, I hope you all had an exciting Superbowl Sunday? Despite the fact that I partied alone, I still made some good eats, including lemon-garlic wings, Buffalo chicken dip, and the best seven-layer dip that I've ever made. I started with one can of refried beans with some sweet ancho taco sauce and chopped, pickled jalapenos mixed in. Next went a double avocado layer (two avocados mashed with lemon juice, garlic powder, and salt), and then a sour cream layer. The fourth layer (and I think this was what made it so fantastic!) was leftover Texas Caviar/black-eyed pea dip (well-drained), topped with shredded Mexi-cheese, sliced black olives, and chopped green onions. SO GOOD! I only made an 8x8 dish, but I've been happily eating it all week!

I would also like to recommend the following cookie recipes, though I don't have any pictures. (Use your imagination, and trust me, they're both super-easy and very YUMMY!)

Soft Ginger-Molasses Cookies
King Arthur Flour)

1 cup unsalted butter
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup molasses
2 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 1/4 teaspoons ground cloves
1 teaspoon ground ginger
2 large eggs
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup crystalized ginger, finely chopped (optional, but gives the cookies a great kick!)
sugar, for coating; pearl sugar; sparkling white (coarse) sugar; or granulated sugar

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease (or line with parchment or Silpats) two baking sheets.
1) In a large mixing bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until they're light and fluffy.
2) Beat in the molasses, baking soda, salt, and spices.
3) Add the eggs, beating well and scraping down the sides of the bowl to make sure everything is incorporated. 4) Stir in the flour.
5) Scoop the soft dough into 1 ½" balls; a tablespoon cookie scoop works well here.
6) Roll them in granulated sugar, coarse sugar, or pearl sugar.
7) Space the cookies on the prepared baking sheets, leaving about 2 1/2" between them.
8) Bake them for ten minutes. The centers will look soft and puffy; that's OK.
9) Remove the cookies from the oven, and cool them on the pan for 10 minutes before transferring them to a rack to cool completely.
10) To make easy, pretty shaped cookies, use a cutter smaller than the cookie to cut a shape from the center of each cookie, while the cookies are still mildly warm. Serve both the original cookies, and the shapes you've cut from them.

Oatmeal Scotchies
(Source: adapted from Annette Rock and Amanda Cannon via
Food Network)

1 cup soft butter
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 medium eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 cups rolled oats
1 cup butterscotch chips (I swapped out Heath chocolate toffee bits here, as I loathe butterscotch chips!)
3/4 cup chopped pecans (I micro-toasted mine for a couple of minutes first)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease cake-shaped pan*.

Using an electric mixer, cream butter, brown sugar, granulated sugar, eggs and vanilla together. Stir in flour, baking soda and salt. Add remaining ingredients and mix well. Scoop into pan. Bake for approximately 20 to 25 minutes. Cool on baking sheet or cooling rack.

*This recipe is designed for one big celebration cookie. I made traditional cookies using a scoop, and baked them for a shorter time, of course. They spread a lot--almost like Florentine cookies--but I loved them for their crispy, chewy goodness! I think the chocolate toffee bits really MADE these cookies!

And lastly, even though tomorrow marks week five for my Aerogarden, here is the (tardy) picture of my herbs and lettuces at one month. Can you even believe it? What a fun toy to help a poor gardener endure one of the coldest winters on record!

1 comment:

Just the Right Size said...

Uh oh, hope you feel better Gina!

I'm gonna make your Obama Bread this my King Aurthur Flour Harvest Grains Blend in the mail this week!