A good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over....

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Flu Fighter/Good for You Cookies

I promised this recipe - one correction, it came from The Food Network Magazine, not Taste of Home (both are excellent sources for recipes and ideas). The first recipe is the original from the October issue and the second (Good for You Cookies) is an adjustment I made, substituting special dark chocolate (also a good antioxidant) for the walnuts. Full of natural antioxidants, these cookies are seriously yummy and - you guessed it, Good for you!!!

FLU FIGHTER COOKIES from the Food Network Magazine

2 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1 1/4 tsp (teaspoon) baking powder
3/4 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
Pinch ground cloves =
1/4 tsp salt
1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup packed dark brown sugar
2 large eggs
1/4 cup molasses
1/4 cup low-fat Greek yogurt
1 TBLS (tablespoon) freshly grated ginger
2 tsp finely grated lemon zest (about one lemon)
1/2 cup old fashioned oats
1 1/4 cups golden raisins
1 1/4 cups dried cranberries
1 1/4 cups roughly chopped walnuts, toasted

1. Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper. Whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and salt in a medium bowl and set aside.

2. Beat the butter and brown sugar in a large bowl with a mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy, 3 minutes. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, fully incorporating each before adding the next. Add the molasses, yogurt, ginger and lemon zest and beat until smooth, scraping the sides of the bowl as needed. Reduce mixer speed to low and beat in flour mixture to make a sticky batter (do not overmix). Fold in the oats, and half the cranberries, raisins and walnuts. Mix the remaining dried fruit and nuts in a small bowl and set aside.

3. Drop heaping tablespoons of batter onto prepared baking sheets. Top each with some of the reserved fruit/nut mixture and chill for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 375 d.

4. Bake cookies until dark golden but still soft, 10 to 12 minutes; cool on rack. Store in airtight container for up to 1 week. Makes about 30 cookies.

Using the recipe above, substitute Special dark chocolate chips (different from semi-sweet) for the walnuts, adding approximately 3/4 cup to the batter and the balance of chips mixed with the cranberries and raisins to top the cookies.

Our Cat, Pat?

A couple of months ago, a pretty little black and white kitten came to our house via the motor of my car. We found her when we stopped the car to find out what "that noise" was. The kitten was unhurt and looked young, female and full of the nastiest smelling gas ever to come out of a living being. I took it to the vet who could not determine an age and did an ultrasound to make sure the kitten was not pregnant since female cats apparently go into spontaneous ovulation by just being around a male cat (hey, that's what the professionals said). Too full of poop, literally, to tell. Sold me some medicine to give the kitten over the next four months. So pretty, sweet and cuddly. We put a red rhinestone collar on "her" and named her Bella.

Time passes and the children come to visit for New Year's. My daughter, ever the diplomat, is watching the kitten crawl around the couch which prompted her to ask: "Mom, what did you name the cat?" "Bella," I answer, "why?" "Because," she answered, stifling a giggle, "Bella is a boy." NO WAY!!! I don't want a boy cat (they spray to mark their territory - the worst - cause their territory is wherever there's room to back up and shimmy). "No, no, no," I cried, "I refuse to accept Bella as a boy!!!"

My daughter, knowing I believe in the power of prayer, solemnly advised, "Mom, praying to Jesus is not going to change the sex of this cat!!" So Bella has become Bela, like Lugosi, with the added moniker of "Pat." SNL fans of Julia Sweeney may remember her character, Pat, the androgynous character no one could determine if male or female for sure. So, I accept that Bela is a one-L, two T feline, for now. He better watch his "pees" and "poops", though - I understand there is an old tyme method of removal involving rubber bands - Ouch!