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WHERE HAS THE TIME GONE!?!?! Ooooooh ya’ll know I’m a summer girl right? When we had those few days of “cooler temps” a while ago I was M-A-D! It’s still August and I want to have EVERY hot day due to me! Heading out the door for work and what slaps me in the face? COLD AIR! It was 58 degrees on an August morning!! What the devil!??!?! You bettuh get outta here cold weather! Get moving!! See ya in NOVEMBER better yet DECEMBER! Bwaaaaaaa I’m not ready for fall and winter! However it did get me to thinking about fall baking and all the lovely spices. But it’s still August…summer…sunshine…heat…summer…summer…

So in my tantrum of not wanting to say goodby to summer, I’m yet reaching for the fruity, summer taste damn it! Darn it! I guess I chose lemon to match my sour mood LOL.

 

Crumb Topped Lemon poppy-seed Glazed Muffins

Crumb Topping

3/4 cups of flour

1/2 cup of sugar

pinch of salt

1/4 cup of melted butter

In a small bowl mix all of the topping ingredients with a fork until crumbly and set aside.

Muffins

1/2 cup softened butter

1 cup of sugar

2 eggs

2 cups of flour

1 tsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. salt

1 cup of buttermilk

2 tablespoons of lemon zest

1/2 cup of poppy seeds

Preheat oven to 375. Spray a muffin pan with baking spray or use paper liners. In a medium bowl sift together the flour, baking powder and salt set aside. Cream butter and sugar, beat in eggs one at a time. Add half of the flour mixture followed by all of the buttermilk. Add the remaining flour and mix well but do not over mix. Fold in the lemon zest and the poppy seeds.

Fill the pans 3/4 full and sprinkle the crumb topping on top of each. (This recipes makes around 15 muffins. I only wanted a dozen and yes I was lazy and chose not to bake the remaining batter, down the sink it went. I confess…I regret that now.) Bake for 25 minutes. Allow the muffins to cool before glazing.

Time to glaze:

Powdered sugar

Lemon juice

Ok, I’m an off the cuff type of cook/baker. I didn’t give measurements for the glaze ingredients because I didn’t measure. I eyeballed it until I got the consistancy that I wanted. I wanted my glaze to be thick enough so that when I applied it to the muffins it did not run off the sides but stayed where I put it. So now to the instructions,

In a small bowl combine the powdered sugar with the lemon juice, stir until smooth and no lumps remain. Use your choice to apply the glaze by either a spoon or a baggie. I used a ziplock bag and snipped one corner to squeeze the glaze onto the muffins.

 

I love York Peppermint Patties. I love the dark chocolate and mint Three Musketeers bars too. I love Junior Mints! Can you tell by now that I love chocolate and mint? Now don’t get me wrong, it’s not my favorite candy combo…not by far but when I get a hankering for it, whew it sure hits the spot.

One day I was thinking, mmmmmm, it would be nice to make cookies with the chocolate and mint flavor. I let it stew for a long time. Then one weekend I would get the cookie cutters out…and they would sit. Then I’d pack them away. Then another weekend would come, out come the cookie cutters…sit…go back. Today I broke that cycle. I made the cookies! It could appear to be a bit time-consuming because of the two separate recipes but time is on your side in every way.

I made the shortbread and while it was chilling I made the mint topping. You can make the mint topping days ahead if you’d like and then assemble everything once the cookies are baked. The options are endless for these cookies as you can change the taste to whatever combo you would like. I think I’m going to try a ginger/lemon combo next. You could do almond, mocha, lemon…whew…whatever you like. Change the shortbread flavor and use a different topping (or filling as I did make sandwich cookies too).

Ok, so I started out with a basic chocolate shortbread recipe, easy enough. But for some reason I wanted to go with something entirely different as far as the topping/filling part. You know what I used? I used a butter mint candy recipe LOL! I wanted something that was going to melt in my mouth, something that I could cut into shapes and something that would dry and hold its shape but yet remain creamy. I thought, butter mint candy! I didn’t want to use fondant or royal icing as I knew neither were going to give me the end result I was looking for.

I may be a little vague in my directions because you can cut the cookies into whatever size and thickness you’d like. The same with the butter mint. Now that I’ve made the cookies I see that I could have rolled the butter mint much thinner but for a first try, I’m happy.

Chocolate Shortbread Cookies

1 cup unsalted butter softened

3/4 cup of sugar

1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract

2 Tablespoons of cornstarch

1 3/4 cups all purpose flour

1/2 cup of cocoa powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

Sift the cornstarch, flour, cocoa and salt in a bowl. Beat the butter and sugar until light, pale and fluffy. Add the dry ingredients until thoroughly combined and pulls from the side of the mixer bowl. (Or you may remove the dough after the dry ingredients are mixed in and transfer to a floured board and knead until it is a smooth ball.) My mixer was doing such a great job I left it in the bowl and continued to mix on low until I noticed it pulling from the sides of the bowl and it was very smooth and soft. I’m not big on kneading!

At this point you may begin to prep the dough for cutting by putting a piece of parchment paper on your cookie sheet. Place the dough on the paper and place another sheet of parchment paper on top. Use your rolling pin to roll the dough to your desired thickness. I rolled my dough to 1/4 inch thickness. Prick the dough with a fork because shortbread puffs up as it bakes. The holes will help allow the steam to escape and prevent puffing.

Place the cookie sheet with the dough in the refrigerator for 30 minutes to chill. No need to keep the additional parchment sheet on top.

In the meantime you can make your butter mint while the dough chills. Recipe to follow.

Remove the chilled dough from the refrigerator and cut into desired shapes. The scraps of dough may be rerolled and cut but I would suggest rerolling once. I usually make “sample snack” cookies with the scraps after the second rolling. I basically piece the scraps together and bake one cookie that I can tear into lol.

Depending upon the size and thickness of your cookies, they could bake anywhere from 12 to 20 minutes. WATCH them after 12 minutes. Watch that the edges aren’t getting too brown. With chocolate it’s hard to tell sometimes if they are done but if you arent careful you can go from not done to burnt in a matter of minutes. You will smell the cookies baking, the chocolate will fill the air. That is a good indicator that they are nearing the finish line. Smaller cookies will take less time so be sure to watch.

Once you determine it’s time to remove the cookies from the oven, allow them to cool on the cookie sheet for 10 minutes and then transfer to a cooling rack.

At this point I started placing my butter mints onto the cookies. The cookies were warm enough to help the butter mints adhere. Now, when it came to decorating the cookies. I had butter mint dough left over. I placed about a teaspoon of milk in a bowl and added a chunk of the butter mint and placed in the microwave for 15 seconds. I stirred the mixture until it became smooth and I continued to add chunks of butter mint until I achieved the consistency I wanted. I wanted a piping consistency similar to royal icing, not quite flooding consistency but a little thicker. You’ll know what you want if you choose to decorate your cookies.

Then after decorating I got tired so the remaining cookies I simply turned into sandwich cookies. I guess if you wanted to do that all along, that is just another option. See what I mean? You could do so much with this recipe with so many tweaking options!

Yeah I got tired and made sandwich cookies instead.

So I hope that this recipe really just serves as a foundation. Use your imagination and don’t be afraid to be creative! I’d love to hear and SEE what YOU did!

Butter Mint

4 1/2 to 5 cups of powdered sugar

1 stick of unsalted butter, softened

1 tablespoon + 2 teaspoons of cream, milk or half and half

1 teaspoon of corn syrup

Flavoring

In a mixer with a paddle attachment, mix 4 1/2 cups of sugar, butter, cream and corn syrup and mix until combined. Mix on high speed for 3-5 minutes until everything is thoroughly combined. You should be able to roll a piece of the dough between your fngers and it should be like a soft ball, not sticky. Beat in the flavoring until desired flavor is achieved. If you intend to use coloring it may be added now for one color. If you will have more than one color you may divide the dough and tint each portion the colors of your choice.

Now you will need to knead the butter mint. At this point remove the mint mixture from the bowl and knead until smooth. If it’s sticky add additional powdered sugar and work it in. If you are adding colors you may add it in at this point as well.

Place a piece of parchment paper on the work table or counter and sprinkle with a bit of powdered sugar. Place the butter mint on the paper. Place another piece of parchment paper on top of the butter mint. Use your rolling pin and roll the mint out to 1/8 thickness (or thicker if you’d prefer). Use your cutters to cut the mint into the shapes and sizes you prefer.

Using a spatula or a small offset spatula, carefully transfer the cutouts to a piece of parchment paper and allow to air-dry until you are ready to use them (right away as I did or either let them air-dry overnight).

What is the one song that, no matter what, you will listen to it until the very end? It just hit me that I’ll do that to my all time favorite Michael Jackson song, “Wanna Be Starting Something”. I didn’t realize it until the other day when I was coming back from lunch and it was playing on the radio in my car. I sat there and listened, sang and danced (all in the driver’s seat) until the song finished. So then I thought, “Gosh Joy, could you really not just simply get out of the car?” I thought back to other times when it was on and I stayed glued to the radio until the song was over. It’s not like I was listening to MYSELF, it’s not MY song that I recorded and I’m just awe-struck at the fact that they’re playing MY song. I think it’s just the beat. Such a great song to get you going, it makes me happy.

It gets worse. There is a car commercial, I believe it’s a car commercial but the song just stays in my head, just one teeny tiny verse. It’s a couple driving and they each sing along with a song that plays on the radio. But when the guy sings, he sings the most goofy song and all he says is “Rocky Mountain hiiiiigh, Rocky-Rocky-Mountain hiii-iiii-iiiigh” and I just crack up and now I cant get that verse out of my head!! UGH!

Well anyway, another weekend has come and gone. I’ve been quite busy in the kitchen so I’ll be shooting post out at least weekly. This blogging thing is a little time-consuming but I do enjoy it. Sometimes while I’m at work my mind is just flooded with ideas of things to make. Then I’ll go buy whatever it is that I may need to make one of the things that the wheel stops on lol. Most of the time I end up making something entirely different. Yesterday I noticed that last week must not have been a good week for banana eating here at the West household. There were THREE beautifully, spotted, ready to be baked bananas! Now if you read some of my older post, I do not waste bananas…huh-uh…no…never…aint gonna happen. I’ll find something to make with them. All that luscious banananess going to waste! OH! The thought!

I didn’t want the banana/peanut butter combo. I thought about a hummingbird cake but I just didn’t want to put in the extra effort with icing and all that…toasting nuts…nah, later. I wanted something more along a bundt cake or loaf cake. Something easy with mimimal effort but great results. Alas, yes, a loaf cake is what I want! I found a banana loaf cake recipe but I tweaked it to make it a little heavier. I wanted something that would go good with a cup of coffee. Brothers and sisters let me tell you, sometimes it pays to follow your gut instinct. Dont be afraid to change things up. I’ve learned that if it messes up and it doesn’t turn out like you expected…just dont do it that way again! Easy as that. BUT when you get results BEYOND what you expected…SHARE!

So without further delay (mostly because I cant wait to go get a slice and a bowl of vanilla frozen yogurt for my Sunday evening treat) I’d like to share with you my, Double Chocolate Banana Loaf Bread! (I can eat frozen yogurt with loaf BREAD cant I?) I hope you enjoy!

Double Chocolate Banana Loaf Bread

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour + 1 tablespoon

1/4 cup Dutch cocoa powder

1 tablespoon of espresso powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 stick of softened butter

1 cup of sugar

2 large eggs room temperature

3 medium bananas mashed (very spotted= very flavorful)

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 cup of semi sweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350. Grease and flour 9 x 5 loaf pan. (I also cut a piece of parchment paper to help when time to lift the bread out of the pan.)

Toss the chocolate chips in a small bowl with 1 tablespoon of the flour.

Sift together the dry ingredients, remaining 1 1/4 cup of flour, cocoa powder, espresso powder, baking soda and salt.

Cream the butter until creamy, add the sugar and beat well on high speed for 5 minutes, scraping the sides of the bowl occasionally. Decrease the speed to medium and add the eggs one at a time, beating just until the yolk is no longer visible. Add the bananas and the vanilla. Add the flour mixture in thirds. Do not overmix, just mix until the flour is fully incorporated.

Fold in the chocolate chips and pour the batter into the loaf pan. Smooth the batter out.

Bake for 55 to 60 minutes. Use a wooden skewer or a toothpick to test for doneness. My bread was baked perfectly after one hour. Let the bread cool in the pan for 15 minutes. Remove and let the bread cool completely.

*Personal Notes:

I keep wooden shish kabob skewers to use for cake testing. They are long enough to go deep into tall cakes such as bundts or loaf pans.

 My cake is darker because I added a tablespoon of black cocoa just for my own curiosity. It does give the cake a deeper chocolate flavor but I decided to add that on a whim as I was reaching for my Dutch cocoa powder.

I like to really mash my bananas. I don’t particularly care for bits of banana in my baked goods. I just want the flavor.

Summer!! My favorite season! I don’t care that it’s 98 degrees now that a cold front has come through LOL! I didn’t mind that it was 100 or 102 degrees. I know that wi…wi…wint…winter is coming (I cant stand to even SAY that word) so I enjoy summer to the fullest!! What is the one past time that most folks enjoy during the summer, yep you got it! Bike riding!

It’s not often that I can laugh at myself but this time, it’s so funny I HAVE to share. My husband and I bought bikes about a month ago. I’d never ridden mine because I felt it was too big for me, it’s a 26-inch mountain bike. It was only $88 at Wal-Mart so we couldn’t pass up that deal. If you could have seen me trying to ride the bike in the aisle of Wal-Mart! LOL!! I haven’t been on a bike in YEARS! I had flashbacks of my childhood…where are my training wheels? Maybe if you just give me a big push I can ride this thing! So I just said let’s get it and I’ll ride it. Well, Sidney has been riding his and I always came up with an excuse why I couldn’t ride with him. Yesterday I decided that I was overcoming my fear and I was going to ride.

So, I packed the bike in the back of my SUV (LOL) and I drove to a low profile spot on the trail that I normally walk. I figured I could practice in the little parking lot because no one ever parks there or they are already on the trail. I was shaking like a leaf! This was just in the parking lot!! “Is anyone looking?” “Anyone coming?” “Dear Lord help me ride this bike!” Then those darn kids came!!! In my mind I was screaming at them with clinched fist…”GET OUTTA HERE!!! GO ON NOW!!” I had turned into a mean old lady! Whewww Lawd…ok so I “walked” the bike to the trail so I could get behind the trees. I think my left leg is going to be bigger than my right because I spent so much time using it to PUSH myself to coast instead of using BOTH feet to pedal! That’s all I was doing, the push and coast move. Finally I got the nerve to steady myself and I put both feet on the pedals and I started to pedal. Pedal-pedal-pedal-pedal…going faster now, I’m doing it! I’m riding my big bike, my big Pee Wee Herman mountain bike!!

WHOAAAA I’M GOING TO FAST!! IT’S A HIIIIIIIIIIIILL!!! Then I found myself screaming, “OH GOD! OH GOD! OH GOD! (not THAT type of OH GOD, nasty minds!) PLEEEEEEASE!!!!” I learned how to use my brakes at that point. I was praying that as I was coming around the bend that no one was approaching to hear me screaming like a wimp. I knew it was time for me to stop when the man on the bicycle behind me said, “On your…on your…RIGHT!” I was in the middle of the trail and he said he didn’t know which way I would go, left or right LOL!! I guess I need to learn bicycle etiquette.

Im proud to say that I think I’ve resurrected my ability to ride a bicycle. Momma needs a full seat though, OUCH! That little banana seat, well…let’s just say I don’t intend to ride until I get a NEW seat!

So even in the midst of a heat wave and my quest to conquer my fear of riding a bike, my baking spirit still arises. I suppose if I didn’t have A/C then of course I wouldn’t be cranking up the oven. Seeing that I’m blessed to have A/C (and it IS a blessing to have it!) I decided to make one of my all time favorite vegan treats. Peanut Butter and Chocolate Chip vegan cookies. Why oh why are the vegan chocolate chips so expensive!?!? These will be made on rare occasions but from the taste…I may have to cut my budget in another area to compensate purchasing those expensive butt chips LOL!! Deeee-licious!

What I really love about these cookies is that you would NOT know that they are vegan. I love taking them to work and everyone really enjoys them and they are so shocked that they are vegan. Trust me when I say that they are well worth the cost of those vegan chocolate chips! Let me know what you think!

Vegan Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

8 Tbsp. chilled vegan margarine cut into pieces

1/2 cup sugar

1/2 cup packed light brown sugar

1/4 cup silken tofu (soft)

1 tsp. vanilla extract

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

3/4 tsp. baking soda

1/4 tsp. salt

1/2 cup peanut butter

1 cup semi sweet vegan chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 400.

In a medium bowl sift the dry ingredients, the flour, baking soda and salt.

In a mixer bowl cream the margarine until light and fluffy. Add both the white and the brown sugars and blend well. Add the tofu and vanilla extract mixing well. Add 1/3 of the flour mixture to the sugar/margarine mixture and mix well. Repeat with an additional 1/3 of the flour mixture, finally add the last of the flour. Add the peanut butter and mix well, fold in the chocolate chips.

Roll a tablespoon size of dough into a ball and place on a greased or parchment paper lined cookie sheet. These cookies spread so space them out. Use a fork to press the criss cross pattern.

Bake for 5-8 minutes or until light golden brown on the edges. Cool cookies on the sheet.

Yesterday was such a great day! Nothing much out of the ordinary to share, just a great day. I went to our local farmers market but this time I took my camera. I wanted to try and capture great shots of the produce and other offerings the locals make and sell. It was rather fun! When I first arrived I saw these beautiful flowers in the back of a pickup truck.

I went to the market with intentions of purchasing beets to make a chilled beet soup. But once I got there I just lost any focus that I had. I’m staggering from vendor to vendor, just ooing and aahing over their goods! I mean, just look at these berries from Hirsch Fruit Farm!

Hirsch Fruit Farm Berries

Visions of blueberry pie dancing in my head……..

Jam! I love jam!!! I love it even more when someone else makes it in so many creative flavors!! Next up, Grace’s Mercantile and their Cameo Roses’s line of jams and jelly. Oooooo-weeeee!! I tell ya, they had SO MANY flavors to choose from!

I was almost sold on the vanilla bean- wild cherry until this little cutie came and placed his order. He was so cute I said, shoot, I’m getting the same flavor that he’s getting!

We ended up getting the Blueberry Citrus Herb. Isn’t he cute with his little tie, hat, muscle tee, cut off shorts and flip flops!! TOO CUTE!!!

I think I arrived around 9am and since it’s so close to my house I decided to walk. It’s only a 10-15 minute walk. BUT Saturday was a record heat breaking day and I coulda sworn it was already 95 degrees by 9am LOL! Whew when I got to the market I was already parched and a little nervous. I thought, hmmm, I’m gonna have to call my husband to come and pick me up and get me home, but I persevered. Thank God that Two Roasting Joes were there with ICED coffee and it was so good! I think I guzzled it down with three hearty sips LOL!

Oh I could go on and on about all of the wonderful vendors at the Chillicothe Farmers Market but I dont want to bore you or try to tell it all in one post. I’ll get to the real reason I went, for the beets.

I love beets. I can eat them straight out of the can. I like them roasted. I like them simply boiled. But I think my all time favorite beet is the pickled beet. O! M! G! If I were allowed to only have one veggie for the rest of my life…I think I can honestly say it would be beets, pickled beets to be exact.

Pickled Beets

The original recipe came from one of my favorite blogs “Simply Recipes“. I’ve made a few edits based upon personal preference.

Ingredients

  • 6-8 beets (I used two bunches)
  • 1/4 cup cider vinegar*
  • 1 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
  • Salt and pepper

Method

1 Remove greens from beets (save for future use if you desire) and peel beets.  Slice the beets to uniform sizes so they will cook evenly.  Place beets in a medium saucepan and cover with water. Boil approximately for 30 minutes or until done. Pierce the beets with a fork to test for doneness. If the fork pierces easily into the beets the beets are done.

2 Drain the beets, rinsing them in cold water.

3 Make the vinaigrette by combining the cider vinegar, sugar, olive oil, and dry mustard.  Whisk ingredients together with a fork.  The dry mustard will help to emulsify the vinaigrette.  Adjust to taste.  Add salt and pepper to taste.  Combine beets and vinaigrette in a bowl and allow to marinate for a half hour at room temperature.

*I did not have cider vinegar on hand so I used what I had. I used a combo of rice vinegar and balsamic to measure 1/4 cup. They taste even better if you let them marinate in the fridge over night.

“I’m proud to be an American, where at least I know I’m free…” Ahhh Independence Day, the Fourth of July, whichever you’d like to call it, it’s one of my favorite holidays. Maybe because it’s like THE biggest cookout day of the year. You’ll be shocked to know that I am NOT cooking out. Oh how I want to bite into a nice piece of grilled chicken breast and some sweet corn on the cob. It just aint happening. I’m kinda pooped, no get up and go, just want to lay here across the bed and watch tv in the middle of the week. I worked yesterday, even put in two hours of unexpected overtime and like most of you, I’ll be back at work tomorrow. I’m just really enjoying being still for a moment and it feels great!

Now I will confess that I did get up around 7:30 to set my butter out and measure out my dry ingredients, I wanted to bake. I was thinking earlier this week on what to bake for the 4th. What is American? Apple pie (not a fan), cherry pie (not a fan), chocolate chip cookies (boring), blueberry something (???)…sigh…this is hard. Then it finally hit me, S’Mores! Oh I have another confession, I’ve never in my 46 years of living, ever had a S’More. I’ve had and made S’Mores bars but that’s not a REAL S’More. I’ve yet to experience the graham cracker/chocolate bar/marshmallow concoction in its true form. Notice I did say “yet”.

So since I decided upon S’Mores but I wasnt going to haul out the grill and charcoal how was I supposed to make my patriotic dessert? I know, I’ll make them into cookies! I went to the store and got a few ingredients that I needed to make my cookies. As I was preparing to measure out my ingredients it struck me! Where are my chocolate chips? I know I bought them! I searched all my “baking stash spots” and not a chip was to be found! Now, if you have been experiencing hot weather like we have here in Ohio…a locked car is no place for chocolate chips to be stored. Gosh darn it…WHY oh WHY did my chips fall out of the bag and I didn’t realize it! See what happened…

Just a hot, melted mess! I was so tempted to toss the bag. I was just disgusted with myself for not seeing the bag in the car!!! UGH! I calmed down and said just let it solidify and chop it up, and that is what I did. The thing I learned about a block of milk chocolate is that it is super easy to chop! Did you know that?? I was able to have an assortment of sizes scattered throughout my cookie batter. Oh gosh! I’m getting ahead of myself!!! How can I fix this…uhm…shoot! Ok put a pin in this chocolate part of the story. Let’s walk over to the graham cracker part, shall we?

Ok, so I wanted the graham cracker flavor in my S’Mores cookie. You gotta have graham cracker right? But I didn’t want to smash-up graham crackers and all that stuff. I wanted to make the cookie entirely from scratch. I did research on homemade graham crackers and found I needed graham flour. That wasnt hard to find because Bobs Red Mill brand of flours and grains is everywhere now! I found the graham flour in a local store and didn’t have to go through all of that online stuff. So here we go, I switched the amount of flour called for in my chocolate chip cookie recipe and used a combo of graham flour and whole wheat pastry flour. The ONLY reason I used the whole wheat pastry flour is because I have too much of it. I had already purchased a bag and then I bought another not knowing that I’d already had some! So I’m trying to at least finish off one bag.

Now once I got everything mixed for my dough (insert chocolate chips back into story now lol) and gave it a little taste, I was SO happy! It tasted SO good! GoodT!!! I really liked having teeny, tiny bits of the milk chocolate mixed throughout the dough. Then the big chunks scattered in there too! Girlfriend! You have got something there! Then I thought ok, ok, do a test cookie and see how it bakes. I wanted my cookies to be big and thick, you know like those darn bakery cookies that are thick and big like a big ol’ pie but you eat the whole thing by yourself anyway. Huh? You don’t do that? I thought everyone did…gulp…am I supposed to share my big cookie?? 😦

Well anyway, my cookies deflated once they cooled!!! I. HATE. WHEN. THAT. HAPPENS!!! GRRRRRRR!!! Now when I bake them as regular chocolate chip cookies they remain somewhat fat once cooled. I have to take into consideration that a graham cracker calls for honey or molasses. So to try to keep the true graham cracker flavor for my S’Mores cookies I had to add that extra liquid. I think that was “one” of the reasons my cookies spread and deflated. I probably should have increased my flour in some way to compensate for the extra liquid. Even though the molasses is thick it was still additional liquid. Sheeeez, I just want to bake, now I see I’m going to have to get all scientific and stuff with my recipes. If I have this much liquid I need to balance it with this much dry ingredients…oh boy. I refrigerated the balls of dough prior to baking and that only helped a little. Now that I’m reflecting upon my experimental recipe there are some things that I’ll do differently the next time I make them. I will definitely make them again and when I get the recipe where I like it, I will share it. But for now, here is my version of  S’Mores in cookie form. God Bless the USA!!!!

Picture June Cleaver sashaying up the walkway with this in her hands LOL! I tell ya I can smell a cake stand or cake carrier a mile away! I’m addicted to cake stands. I’m not sure how many I have but I have at least 20…and I’m not stopping. I’m kinda going off course with this story so follow me, once when my husband and I were in California and he was off doing his business stuff (that’s why we were there, you know the wives go to shop) anyway, I was in a store and I can’t remember the name, but I saw a beautiful cake stand (not the one in this picture, I have THAT one packed away for special occasions). It was pricey, way pricey for a cake stand. So I told my husband about it…would’nt you know when my birthday rolled around HE GOT ME THAT CAKE STAND!!! WAAAAUUUGHHH (In my Lucille Ball cry) He DOES love me!!! Baby it’s you, you’re the one I love, you’re the one I need! Oh excuse me I got excited and went into my Beyonce routine singing “Love on Top”.

What was I talking about? Oh the cake carrier…June Cleaver…yes! Ok, so I was going to Target but I pass this little second-hand store. I’ve always said, ‘Joy why don’t you go in there, they’ll have something you’ll like.” So I said, “ok.” As soon as I walked in this retro looking beauty was right there with my name on it! YES! My eyes got as big as a dinner plate! Without hesitation I grabbed it and walked with it in my hand as if it were the purse I came in with! I would dare anyone to try to even look at it! HEY what are you looking at?? There’s nothing over here for you to see, keep it moving!

So of course with it being a retro type cake carrier I had to make a throwback cake. Right! Yellow cake with chocolate icing! This carrier is huge! Oh and what was funny was when I was trying to get a picture of it. I kept catching my reflection! I’m all bent down peering at my reflection, gaaaaak! That wasn’t a pretty sight so I learned to just take the picture at an angle LOL!

So this is a brief post, I just wanted to share my little treasure! How many cake stands do you have?