Thursday, June 27, 2013

Three Types of Cookies from One Batter! Father's Day, 2013

Yes, I realize this is another belated post, past the event.  But, in my defense, we didn't celebrate Father's Day with my dad until this past Sunday because he was out of town.  I wanted to make cookies, and peanut butter sounded good.  To JK, peanut butter and jelly sounded even better.  So, I started to make them, and then after I made the first batch, I became bored with the idea of all the cookies being the same, so I tweaked the toppings, and ended up with a nice variety of cookies to share with my parents.  They became: Peanut Butter and Jelly Cookies, Sugar Peanut Butter Cookies, and Cinnamon Almond Peanut Butter Cookies!  I used raw sugar in the recipe, and discovered that was the slight crunch my dad was trying to pinpoint.  He said he really liked that sweet crunch, so keep that in mind if you want to make these.  I also used my mom's homemade plum jelly for the first variety, so that was a nice touch for them, too.  (For the first variety, I veganized and tweaked a recipe from a Costco cookbook.)

On a different note, it turns out it wasn't the juice that ruined my keyboard, so GR's off the hook.  My "j" key was apparently clogged with lots of black, kitty-sized fur.  Hmm, Cleopatra?!  So, now, my "j" kinda works.  I have to press really hard on it, and sometimes have to delete all the extra "j's" that will appear.  I'm thinking I want a  new keyboard -- but what do when she snoozes on her favorite spot again?

 From left to right: Peanut Butter and Jelly Cookies, Sugar Peanut Butter Cookies, and Cinnamon Almond Peanut Butter Cookies

Here's a close-up of the beauties!

Three Types of Cookies from One Batter!

Ingredients for the Batter:

1 cup raw sugar
1 cup brown sugar, packed
1 cup vegetable shortening
1 cup creamy peanut butter
1/4 cup vanilla soy milk
2 tsp. vanilla extract
3 and 1/2 cups flour
2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt

Topping Ingredients for Peanut Butter and Jelly Cookies:

1/2 (or so) of your favorite jam

Topping Ingredients for Sugar Peanut Butter Cookies:

Extra raw sugar

Topping Ingredients for Cinnamon Almond Peanut Butter Cookies:

1/4 cup cinnamon almonds, chopped medium to small

Directions for Batter:

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.  Put the first six ingredients in a large bowl.  Mix on medium speed with an electric mixer until blended and smooth.  Add the dry ingredients right on top and mix well with a spoon.  Take a spoonful of batter, roughly a heaping tablespoon or so, and round it into a ball about an inch or so around.  Place on an ungreased cookie sheet.  Finish with a third of the batter.  I can fit twenty cookies on my cookie sheet.

Directions for Peanut Butter and Jelly Cookies:

Bake cookies for seven minutes.  Remove from oven and make a small well in each cookie with the back of a teaspoon or a small melon baller.  Place a small dollop of jelly in each well and bake for an additional two minutes.  Cool on a cooling rack.

Directions for Sugar Peanut Butter Cookies:

Flatten each ball of cookie dough with the back of a fork, crisscrossing once, so you have a kind of fork "x."   Sprinkle a small pinch of raw sugar on each cookie.  Bake for nine minutes.  Cool on cooling rack.

Directions for Cinnamon Almond Peanut Butter Cookies:

Press a few chunks of chopped almonds into the top of each cookie dough ball.  If it starts to give way, just mold it back together.  Bake for nine minutes.

Note:  You should be able to make twenty cookies of each variety.  They are so good, and everyone can have their own favorite.  Feeds five hungry vegans, a Grannyma and a Poppy...and more for the next day.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Fresh Spring Soup

Hello, hello, hello!  My apologies on the break at last posting.  Summertime with the Blessings is quite busy.  I actually made this soup in the heart of spring, but I finally found a moment to post it.  Also, a warning, my middle Blessing seems to have spilled a fruit drink on my keyboard, and so until further notice I cannot depress the letter that is between "i" and "k" in the alphabet.  Luckily, none of the ingredients involve that letter. Also my mouse sticks to the desk now and seems quite "uncleanable."  But, we must carry on!

This is one of those cupboard dishes that almost always turn out great.  I loved the finished product; it was delicious and used up so much of the awesome seasonal produce that I picked up at the Farmer's market.  Give it a try in about ten months!  :-)  Ha ha, only kidding, you can have it now.

Fresh Spring Soup


1 Tbs. canola oil
1 red onion, chopped
2 cups chopped cauliflower
2 cups chopped Brussels sprouts
1 corn on the cob, kernels sliced off (it's even good if they come off in chunks!)
1/2 tsp. pepper
2 tsp. salt
2 cups favorite spaghetti sauce (I used some in a glass cylindrical containers, er, storebought)
1 cup leftover rice
Water to cover
 1/4 cup mint leaves
1 cup chopped parsley


Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat.  Add the onion, and cook for ten minutes, stirring occasionally.  Add the cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, and corn.  Cook for another ten minutes, stirring occasionally.  Add the pepper, salt, spaghetti sauce, rice and water, and cook for another twenty minutes.  Add the mint and parsley.  Stir well, and it's ready to serve.  So tasty!  Feeds five hungry vegans.