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Friday, October 15, 2021

Peanut Cookies

Holy cow! It has been a while. There was a lot going on so I had to take a break from baking. But I am back! I found some great new cook books filled with delicious sounding recipes. The first one I ha to make involves peanuts just for my sweetie. He's been very patient during the baking drought.

I pulled this recipe from  the 1940's Metropolitan Cook Book which was put out by the Metropolitan Life Insurance Company. This is one of the several cookbooks I found while on vacation.
Looks simple enough and it does not look like it is going to produce 15 dozen cookies. Yeah! One common problem I am having with some of these older recipes is the amount of cookies I actually get from them. Despite what he says, neither I nor my boyfriend need 5 dozen cookies in the house.
I decided to use unsalted butter as the fat since I always have lots of it on hand. Had to buy some peanuts but gave my sweetie the rest of the container. It lasted less than a week. 
There doesn't seem like there is enough butter...but let's keep going. Gonna add the eggs.
It's starting to take shape. A nice and fluffy dough!
Always read the entire recipe first. Sometimes I don't but it is a good practice to get into. I was not paying attention and added the peanuts to the cookie dough.
It did not feel like there was quite enough peanuts so I added more to the top. 
After just 12 minutes I got these fluffy cuties!
My kitchen smells like peanuts! 
These baked up nice and fluffy. And smell delicious!

These came together quick and easy and didn't require anything special. I didn't even have to bust out the standing mixer! They were very light in texture and flavor. These will not be mistaken for peanut butter cookies. The peanut taste was barely there. If I hadn't mistakenly added peanuts to the mix there would not have been much peanut flavor. That being said, they were delicious. Easy enough to throw together in a pinch and you just have to remember to add extra peanuts.

My Rating: Pretty good. Easy for a last minute cookie.

Dylan Rating: "Needs more peanuts but it's nice."

Thursday, March 18, 2021

English Tea Cakes

I have been really into simple baking lately. Nothing fancy or overly complicated. Just nice, easy cookies. I need to take on something more unique but maybe later. I loved the introduction to this recipe and had to make it, English Tea Cakes from the 1951 edition of The Cookie Jar. Tea cakes are similar to cookies, right?

The only thing I was missing was the currants. I had raisins and golden raisins but no currants. The British school teacher calls for currants and so I must get them!
I got a box of Zante currants, which are basically really small raisins. They are kinda cute!
Creaming butter and sugar! I tried for an artsy shot. 
Time to add the currants! These are fun. I am going to have to find more recipes with them. It does seem like a lot of currants...
Believe it or not, I actually read all through the instructions it just never clicked that this was more of a bar recipe instead of a cookie recipe. The recipe did not give dimensions for the pan except 'shallow.' Okay...I just grabbed my largest cookie sheet. I hoped it will fill out the pan in the oven, like a cake.
Hmm... It did not fill out the pan. Damn. It kind of looks like an uneven sheet cake. Oh well.
Time to cut them into little squares. I used a pastry cutter instead of a knife and it worked so much better! I was actually able to cut in straight lines. Wow!
Look at these delicious cuties! The currants all fell to the bottom of the tea cakes but next time I'll just have to cover them in flour first.
I just happened to decide to bake on a beautifully bright day. Sunshine and light tea cakes!
These are moist yet light delicious snacks! The thinner parts of the pan turned out much crisper than the thicker center but all parts were edible and tasty. Next time I would either bake it in a smaller pan or spread it out more evenly. I loved the little Zante currants! It felt like you got more currant flavor through out the cakes. These kept very well in a sealed container on the counter.

My Rating: Keeper! Easy and just different enough.

Dylan's Rating: Yum! I like the thinner ones better.

Friend Rating: "I did my best to make them last all week- last one this morning- They were GREAT!"

Wednesday, February 17, 2021

Best Yet Walnut Bread

Sometimes the best way to figure out what to bake is just to read recipes aloud. Someone will let you know, loudly, what they want (Dylan). This is not a recipe I would have chosen since it seems a little plain but it caught Dylan's attention so I thought I would give it a go. It is from my handwritten green cookbook and probably from the 1940's-ish. 

I do not have the best of luck with breads but let's try. Looks super easy!
This is such a simple recipe with everything readily available. Who doesn't have flour, milk, and walnuts around?
All dry ingredients are mixed. All wet ingredients are mixed. Walnuts are waiting patiently. 
Easy peasy mixing! It did turn out quite thick.
Added the walnuts. They got tired of waiting.
As I mentioned before, I do not have very good luck with breads. I have a 8 inch bread pan and it looks like the dough is just enough. My main problem is that the bread overflows! This does not look like it will. I have hope!
At 60 minutes the center was still a bit runny. Same with 70! I had to bake it for 80 minutes for the center to come out clean. It also looks like it the edges are a bit hard. Smells delicious but I'm afraid it is overbaked.
I had to warm up a slice and add a nice smear of butter. Do Not Put Vintage Dishes in the Microwave! or Dishwasher! They will be destroyed, shattered into a million pieces and you will be crying on the floor.
This was surprisingly yummy! The ends were ends hard as a rock but the insides was nice and moist. I would probably try this again with a larger pan. The walnuts were spread evenly throughout. I enjoyed it! I kept feeling like something was missing but I think I am too used to banana bread. I have to admit: I have never had just plain walnut bread. 

My Rating: Definitely a keeper!

Dylan's Rating: This is so delicious! Ends are a bit hard.