Scottish Oat Crunchies, January 1943

That’s right, we’re back on the Gourmet Cookie Book Project! It’s
January 1943, eggs are rationed, and so there are none in these
cookies. There is quite a bit of sugar, though—1C of light brown
sugar. (I don’t actually know if brown sugar was easier to get in 1943
than white.)

There was one issue with these, and it did affect the final result.  The recipe says “refrigerate for at least 20 minutes, then roll out on a lightly floured board and cut 2″ circles”.  That part I did. Then “Move to a buttered baking sheet with a large spatula”  This did not work *at all*.  Maybe it was because I was baking just before a hurricane, or maybe 2 hours wasn’t long enough to let them chill after all, but only two managed to be lifted onto the baking sheet—the others just crumpled into balls.  Eventually, I gave up and just dropped teaspoonfulls onto the baking sheet (which I didn’t bother to butter) and pressed them flat.  I tried pressing them with a cup (to which they stuck) and then gave up and used my hand.  I tried to have sets of same-sized cookie balls, and, having matched them all up now, seem to have managed at least that much quality control.

They came out very pale, but very tasty—even when I baked them for
15 minutes at 350F instead of 10 minutes.   Brian really likes them with peanut butter inside (He says “Look out, Girl
Scouts!” and that he will never need Do-so-dos again)   I just bought some sour cherry jam (recommended by the book) to try,  so we’ll see how that is!

@marleigh yum! I made Scottish Oat Crunches (these two are with peanut butter filling)


Devil’s Delight Cookies, featuring "Some Like it *REALLY* Hot" Legos

Devil Cookies with "Some Like it Hot" Legos

Lynn was up visiting a few weeks ago, so we had to bake. In addition to the Secretly-Not-Vegan Blueberry Banana Muffins that I made, we made Devil’s Delight Cookies together. The recipe calls for Vosges Red Fire bars (in fact, my copy is written on a Vosges Red Fire wrapper)  but we didn’t have any.
What we did have were a set of “too spicy for human consumption” Lego seconds from Chocolates By Ariel. This seemed a reasonable compromise, and they turned out delicious! They are probably too spicy for kids, so more for me!

 Devil’s Delight Cookies

  • 10 oz bittersweet chocolate
  • 1/2c + 1 Tbsp flour
  • 3 Tbsp cocoa powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1C + Tbsp sugar 3 eggs 2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 “Red Fire” bar or 4-5 “Some Like it Hot” legos (approximately 94g), broken into ~ dime sized chunks 1/2C cinnamon chips

For dusting:

  • 4 tsp sugar
  •  4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper

Preheat oven to 350F and line two cookie sheets with parchment paper. Mix dusting ingredients and set aside. Melt bittersweet chocolate. In a medium bowl, whisk flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and cayenne pepper. In a large bowl (i.e. the mixer bowl) beat butter and sugar until creamy. Add eggs and beat until the mixture is pale, light and creamy, 5-10 minutes. Mix the melted chocolate and vanilla into the egg mixture, then add flour mixture, SLiH bar pieces and cinnamon chips. Beat until just combined and drop the result onto the cookie sheets in small lumps. Sprinkle the dusting mixture over the lumps and bake for 12 minutes or until the cookies are evenly cracked but not firm to the touch. Enjoy!



These were awesome the first and second day, but got crumbly and not as good after that. So if you make them, eat them fast!

Cherry Crisp

I made Peach Crisp last weekend, and Lynn said it was the best dessert
she’d had all summer. (And she’s a Pastry Expert, so that made me feel
pretty awesome)
So we bought some more peaches, and some cherries, and I was torn
about which to make.

And then my family set into the peaches, and suddenly there weren’t
enough of them for a crisp. So cherry it was!
I pitted cherries for like an hour, only losing about a quarter of
each cherry to the Very Hungry Toddler (who is a huge fan of fruit)
Then I let them mascerate in the last 1/4c or so of vanilla sugar
(which we’ve had since approximately 2001—one of my old roommates
made it!) and some cinnamon for an hour or two. Then I made Bittman’s
crumble topping (from How to Cook Everything and How to Cook
Everything Vegetarian), and baked it for about 35 minutes at 350F.

Cherry Crisp

Secretly (Not So) Vegan Blueberry Muffins (3)

Secretly (Not So) Vegan Banana Blueberry Muffins

Secretly (Not So) Vegan Banana-Blueberry Muffins

These were posted to the SomervilleMoms list the other day, with a
link to…
(Thanks everyone!)

I made them with blueberries, but failed to notice that her blueberry
recipe had reduced sugar—I will definitely do that next time, since
these came out sweeter than my preference. They also came out very
soft—I think I was too afraid of over baking—but they were popular
with everyone but Emi.
(I’m not sure why—maybe she’s just not in a muffin mood. She has
turned down anything even remotely interesting today, preferring milk,
plain bread, plain cheese, and cantaloupe to the muffins, omelets and
blueberries I’ve offered.)

4 regular sized or 3 very large overripe bananas, mashed(2)
1 stick of butter (3)
.5 cup brown sugar
.5 cup white sugar
2 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1.5 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
“some” fresh ground nutmeg(1)
1/2 pint fresh organic blueberries (Thanks, Boston Organics!)

For no-egg muffins, these are *amazing*. Soft, moist, and tasty. I
could have used even more cinnamon and nutmeg, though I do tend to go
lightly on nutmeg for the baby—neurotoxins and all that.

(1) It was the end of a nut, so I didn’t measure. Also, microplane grater FTW!
(2) I used two I had frozen and two that just today showed brown
spots—bananas don’t get overripe around here very easily, since it’s
one of Emi’s favorite foods. I may never get to make banana bread

(3)These would be vegan, but I don’t have SmartBalance, so I used butter.  So they aren’t so vegan anymore.

Back in the oven again! (or The Vanishing No-Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies)

We have an oven again!!! I celebrated by making my favorite cookies, the Vanishing Oatmeal Anything Cookies… or I planned to. 

After I had creamed the butter and sugar, and added the eggs, vanilla
and all-purpose flour, I realized that I only had steel-cut oats,
not the rolled oats the recipe called for. I had to either soak the
steel-cut oats (and thus delay my cookies by hours, not an option when
baking at 10 PM on a weeknight)
or find some other way. I added 2c of flour, until it looked about
right, and dumped in an entire bag of chocolate chips instead of just
1c, on the theory that anything with that much chocolate in it can’t
be all bad!

Vanishing No-Oatmeal Cookies


Vanishing No-Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies
(with thanks to the Quaker Oat company, whose recipe I once used
before I started making changes)
1/2 lb. (2 sticks) butter, softened
1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 bag Ghiardelli semi-sweet chocolate chips, or whatever you have.

Heat the oven to 350F, and cream together the sugar and butter (I use
a stand mixer, you don’t have to.)
Add the eggs and vanilla, mix well.
Add the flour, baking soda, and salt and mix well, then add the
chocolate chips and mix gently.

Shape into small balls (1 tsp size is best, and makes a great one or
two-bite cookie) and bake for 8-12 minutes. Even with convection
bake, I found that these were more on the 12 minute end, and even so
were tender and soft when they cooled. For a crisper cookie, you may
want 14 minutes or slightly less flour.

shaped like a cookie: deep dish butternut pizza

I find myself wanting to write about more than just cookies. Rather
than starting a whole new blog, I think I will just expand this one.
Don’t worry, though—I will still be doing the Gourmet Cookie Book
project, and other cookies!

I made dinner Tuesday night—it was a deep-dish butternut squash pizza, and it turned out *awesome*. 

Butternut Squash Pizza

Zeroth(1), I put the cornmeal pizza crust recipe from “The Bread
Lover’s Bread Machine Cookbook” into the bread machine on the dough
First, I cut my adorable little butternut squash into 1/2″ pieces.
This is *way* harder with a 1 year old clinging to your knees, so it
took nigh unto forever, but wasn’t actually difficult—the only
challenge was keeping her in a safe place for me to use a knife and
vegetable peeler.
Second, I put the squash, a chopped red onion, sage, nutmeg and garlic
into a glass roasting pan with some(2) olive oil, and roasted it for
about 18 minutes at 400F(3).

Meanwhile, once the pizza dough finished in the bread machine, I
shaped it into a springform pan and baked it for 10 minutes at 400F.
Then I pulled it out, turned the heat down to 350F, and shaped the
dough further—crushing down the bottom and pushing more crust up the
sides. I put mozarella cheese on the bottom, then a layer of the
roasted vegetables mixed with a can of diced tomato, then another
layer of cheese, then another layer of veggies, then a final topping
of cheese. The whole thing went in to bake for 40 minutes. 10
minutes in, I noticed that the top was browning too quickly, so I put
tinfoin loosely over it.
When it was done, I let it rest for a few minutes(4) and then had a
delicious, thick-crust pizza!

Two days later, it’s still good—1/8 to 1/6 of a pie is *plenty* for
most adults, so it is leftovers for days 🙂

(1) Yes. I married a computer scientist, it got to me. I like to count
from zero. Besides, it means you don’t have to re-write your list when
you realize that you did something before the thing you listed first.
(2)How much? “Enough”
(3) Everything I could find suggested 20 minutes at 400F, but after
18 it looked Quite Roasted Enough. I blame the convection feature.
(4) More than a few, actually—I had to give E a bath, after she
“ate” the extra vegetables (aka smeared them in her hair)
But it was tasty and still mostly hot 30 minutes after I took it out
of the oven.