Thursday, July 29, 2010

Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies 'like the bakery'

2 cups baking mix
1/2 tsp baking soda
3/4 cup melted butter
1 cup dark brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 tbsp vanilla extract
1 egg yolk
1 whole egg
2 cups ghirardelli double chocolate bittersweet chococlate chips
Preheat oven to 325 F degrees. Lightly oil a baking sheet or line with silpat.
Mix together baking mix and baking soda with a wire whisk. Mix together melted butter and both sugars until smooth. Add vanilla extract, egg and egg yolk. Mix until smooth. Add dry baking mix. Mix until smooth. Mix chocolate chips in with a wooden spoon. Scoop onto baking sheet by 1/4 cup measurements, leaving 3 inches between each cookie. Bake for 17 minutes in a preheated oven. Let cool 2 minutes on the pan. Move cookies to cooling rack to cool completely.
Makes 18 cookies

The need for good bread here...

I love those bread bakeries that have daily selections that keep you wanting to come back everyday. Unfortunatiely we don't have such a place here. You know the ones that only do breads.

I have a master baking mix of flour, salt, sugar, and dry milk that sits on my counter. I refill the big container once every two weeks for our baking purposes. You can make bread, cookies, biscuits, scones, pancakes or waffles, etc. I love the fact that this mix doesn't have all those unwanted preservatives and unknown origins of ingredients.

I love the simplicity of a great mix that makes things convenient. On Monday, we made chocolate chip cookies. Today I am going to make some molasses whole wheat batter yeast bread. I'll post those recipes.

If you enjoy baking, having a pre-made all purpose baking mix makes life easier.

Old/New venture for me

I love to cook. I mean really cook!! I am out of practice some as I have been really busy the past 3 years volunteering full time and my church calling keeps me preoccupied 24/7.

I used to cater volunteer luncheons,charity functions,neighborhood association venues, weddings and business affairs for my husband. They were all amazing and I always have great comments and feedback. I loved it even more when people just had to have the recipes.

SO...I am looking through a pile of cookbooks I own and one or two online to cook from cover to cover and blog my journey. Do you have any suggestions? I need to get back to the things I love and make a regular time for it. So since cooking happens at least twice daily in my home I want to incorporate more of it as a time for me. I plan to place ads that I choose to review on this blog. Be assured that I will show you the products that are my favorite, that I own, or that I used to try the recipes.

I hope you enjoy this chapter in my life as I restore one of my talents and favorite hobbies.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Swiss Chard Soup

Today I made Swiss Chard Soup for lunch for family. A neighbor here in River Heights gave us a large bag of fresh swiss chard. It was enjoyed by all because there are no leftovers. Even the kids ate it. The recipe follows...

Swiss Chard Soup
1 pound chicken spinach and asiago sausage, cut into small dice
1 tbsp virgin olive oil
1 onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
3 cups cubed peeled potatoes
1/2 teaspoon dried Italian herb seasoning
1/2 tsp pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon anise seed
3 cups water
1 cup sodium reduced chicken stock
2 cups sliced swiss chard, packed
1/2 cup shaved parmesan cheese

Cut sausage into 1 inch pieces. In a large saucepan, heat olive oil and brown sausage. Transfer to paper towels to drain. Add onion, garlic, potatoes, Italian herb seasoning, pepper, salt, and anise seed. Cook until onion is softened about 5 minutes. Add water and stock, bring to a boil. Return sausage to a pan, reduce heat and cover. Cook until potatoes are almost tender. Cook for about 7 minutes. Add swiss chard; simmer, covered, until tender, about 5 minutes. Top with parmesan cheese.