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Lemon and Poppy Seed Muffins

Muffins!

All righty! Let’s hope this lemon/poppy seed combo works out better than the last time. I actually have lemons this time, so I feel that automatically makes things better. I’m going on a ski weekend to West Virginia this weekend with some friends. Lemon muffins seem like just the thing to much on before going out into the cold (mid to high 40s? What?). I found this recipe which is adapted from a recipe by Dorie Greenspan. The malt ball cookie recipe is also hers, so I feel like using another of her recipes is a safe bet. I don’t have time for icing (nor do I trust myself to pull it off), so I’m skipping that step.

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Chocolate Malt Ball Cookies

Lots of Malt Ball Cookies

My dad is probably one of the hardest people to get a present for. He buys himself everything he needs or wants. He’s fussy about what he likes and doesn’t like. It’s nearly impossible to get an excited reaction out of him. The most success I’ve had is with my apple pie. But I know he loves malts, malt balls, anything malt flavored. So I decided to bake him a Christmas present. I somehow stumbled upon these chocolate malt ball cookies and figured they would be perfect. He liked them, but said if he had a choice, he’d pick chocolate chip cookies. Sigh. The search continues. I found them delicious. So did my brother and friends. I’ve been meaning to make them again since Christmas (gotta use up that malt powder that was almost impossible to find). Super Bowl Ski Weekend seemed like a good time.

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Egg and Chicken Sausage

Egg and Chicken SausagePretty boring tonight. I have a real problem with thinking fourth dimensionally.This is basically all I had left in my fridge. Going to do a Trader Joe’s/Giant run in a little bit. I’m thinking chicken for dinner tomorrow and cookies. Then Friday I’m going to make lemon poppy seed muffins.

Cooking Movie: Back to the Future 3

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Vegetable Soup

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It may not be pretty, but it sure is delicious. This is one of my mom’s recipes. Basically just put a bunch of vegetables in a pot with water and spices and let it cook. I made this two weeks ago and decided to make another smaller batch with the frozen leftover meat and vegetables since I had halved the recipe. That’s why there’s no potatoes (I made those into mashed potatoes last week). Still good though! In addition to the ketchup, I put in salt, pepper, thyme, Penzey’s Northwoods seasoning (yum!), and sweet curry powder. I love vegetables, but the sauce is my favorite part. So good! Followed it up with the lemon poppy seed cake. The soft bits that didn’t get over baked in the middle are good. Still no lemon taste, but at least it’s not salty.

Cooking Movie: Tootsie

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Lemon Poppy Seed Cake

Lemon Poppy Seed Cake

 

When looking for new recipes, the first place I always check out is FoodGawker. I love being able to browse by looking at pictures of food and by what ingredients I have on hand. I always seem to be out of something, but I never let that stop me when I’m in the mood to cook.

My brother gave me a gift card to Penzeys for Christmas. I stocked up on lemon extract and poppy seeds in the hopes of making lots of delectable treats (hopefully craving lemon isn’t a sign of anything). Tonight was the night! I found this recipe on Sweetsonian (doubly appropriate since I also live in the DC area). It didn’t call for milk or yogurt. It was fairly easy to make. I just wish there was an easy and fast way to get butter to get to room temperature. The waiting is the worst part for me. The extract tasted a bit alcoholy to me in the batter, but I hoped it would burn off.

Eating the first piece now! It’s dense. A bit crunchy (the recommended hour and twenty minute baking time seemed excessive to me. I stopped it at an hour. I think it could have used a bit less time in the oven). Hm a bit salty too. There’s no taste of lemon. Ah well! That’s what I get for using extract instead of zest. Time to find a different recipe.

Cooking Movie: Jurassic Park

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Intro

When the new year started, I decided to make some resolutions to change things in my life. I’ve gotten complacent. I decided that one of the easiest things I could do was resolve to cook more. Not only will it save money, it will also potentially be healthier. It’s super easy to just pop in another Trader Joe’s frozen dinner or Amy’s Mac and Cheese, but they probably aren’t too good for me despite their deliciousness. So I’m going to try to either bake or cook something every day! Or at least every other day? Definitely with more regularity than I have been. I bake fairly often (key lime pie and apple pie are often requested), but never cook. I’m challenging myself to do both! Help me stay accountable. I also always have a movie or something on in the background while I’m cooking to make noise. I’ll list that as well. Just keep in mind I’m probably only actually watching about ten minutes tops of it. Listening to a movie is a whole different experience.