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    Buffalo, NY

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  1. This week is another of our monthly lunches at work. I generally try to make something for both the chocolate eaters and the non-chocolate eaters, which generally means at least two different recipes altogether. This time I decided to try to please everyone with one recipe: His Mother's Oatmeal Cookies, which were the only oatmeal cookie my mother, an exceptional baker, ever made. I am not a big oatmeal cookie fan, but these are something else - light and crunchy, a bit buttery, and not too sweet. My mom always sandwiched them with Smucker's blackberry jam, which I will do to some of them the morning of the lunch to keep them from going too soggy; I will also serve some plain/un-sandwiched and some dipped in chocolate so as to please as many as possible. Yes, that is a LOT of cookies. A single recipe makes in the neighborhood of 7 or 8 dozen cookies, which is enough for almost any purpose. This morning, however, working from my mother's battered Betty Crocker cookbook, I got distracted by her handwritten notes about doubling the recipe and didn't realize until I had mixed the dough completely that I had added milk enough for a double batch - so I assembled a second batch sans milk and mixed the two together. I sincerely hope I can find a home for them all, as they are absolutely addictive and I definitely do not need the extra calories!
  2. Tomorrow is our annual staff “retreat” - a day offsite to work on our culture and think about the future - and again this year I volunteered to provide dessert for lunch and snacks for the afternoon break. I always try to accommodate as many tastes as possible, which usually leads to an assortment of goodies. Before I wrapped them up on their platters I kept one of each aside for ... quality control: Clockwise from 12:00: tangy citrus sandwich cookies, brown butter chocolate chip cookies with pecans, almond joy cookies, and extra-gooey Rice Krispie treats with handfuls of freeze dried blueberries, raspberries and strawberries mixed in. We have a few folks on staff who shun gluten, so I thought I would try King Arthur Flour’s gluten free measure-for-measure flour blend in the chocolate chip and citrus cookies. It seemed to work just fine - I usually get more spread on the chocolate chip cookies with wheat flour, and there is a distinct grittiness/powderiness to them both, but I imagine they will get eaten by gluten free and gluten full folks without complaint.
  3. Such a lovely bowl! Looks like it was a wonderful weekend!
  4. What a delightful day it was! I take for granted sometimes that I live close enough that a visit with the OG Lunch Ladies is an easy day trip, and I aim to make it a more frequent occurrence. I am lucky to have @Kerry Beal come down to visit several times a year, but I dearly love seeing @Anna N as well. I am still dreaming of that wonderful, lemony cauliflower, and although I have no food photos to share I did get a shot of a most interesting appliance in the washroom: Can’t say I would ever use what appears to be a hand-held bidet in a restaurant - or maybe I should fervently hope I never have the need!
  5. The staffer you talked to steered you wrong! They still have quite a bit, but they moved it over near the baking stuff. I doubt I will be adding more to my stash, though... still haven’t used more than a couple packages.
  6. Bet you can't eat just one! Every month I run a meeting of my organization's leadership team where we talk about strategic issues - often fairly dry content, but this afternoon we had a rather contentious agenda item that spurred a lot of... discussion. Fortunately I had the foresight to grab the bin of these off my desk when I left my office for the meeting room; I can report that they do an excellent job of smoothing the edges of prickly conversations!
  7. The latest iteration of my office confections is one of the most popular with my colleagues - chocolate clusters with heavily salted David Lebovitz's candied peanuts. These peanuts are daaaaangerous on their own, and in combination with chocolate they are one of the few things that really challenge my Keto resolve. So simple and so, so moreish.
  8. How about breaking out some luster powder, mixing it with a bit of alcohol and going the kintsugi route?
  9. Does this mean the original melt, like when you’re starting a run? I thought it had to get up past 35.5, so yay for saving a few minutes here and there!
  10. These look fantastic! I have developed a habit over the last year of always having a bin of some confection or other sitting on my desk for my colleagues to enjoy - my job is fairly solitary so it encourages people to stop by my office to chat and often results in some good collaborative work - and I think I now know what the next treat will be. I imagine they will be delicious dipped in chocolate.
  11. So somehow my TJs keeps getting restocked with Ruby Cacao, and I keep buying it. I have now laid in a supply that would probably qualify me for a Discovery Channel special, if not a whole series, on hoarding. If anyone really wants to try it and can't get it in your area, PM me and I'll send you some, at cost ($2.99 for 5 oz) plus postage.
  12. I always dip them! Tempering the meltaway with EZTemper silk makes the texture so wonderfully melty that the chocolate is just a temporary barrier, especially with a relatively thin coating. Melts in your mouth, not in your hands, as they say...
  13. An obligation-free Sunday and a hoard of Ruby Cacao wafers from Trader Joe’s got me thinking about peanut butter meltaways - a favorite of just about everyone in my life, so I won’t have any trouble getting these addictive little suckers out of my house. The Ruby makes for a little PB&J vibe that definitely does not suck. And they’re great for dipping (tempered via EZTemper, of course) - nice and fluid but not too fluid.
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