Oct 15 2012
Just back from Parents’ Day Weekend at Bentley University. Which made me reminiscent for the day when Ben was little…
So I dug up this old blog post and recipe:
When September comes around I can’t help but think of baking. When my son was in elementary school we had an after-school tea ritual. When he got home after his day I would have a warm pot of camomile tea waiting and some cookies on a plate and he would tell me about what he learned in school. It was a charming tradition but as he got older he was more interested in hanging out with friends and messing around on his computer than in having tea with mom. That’s as it should be of course. But still as the years went by I could occasionally get him to stop and pause a while with me if I baked something special like these Chocolate Chip Cookies.
This particular cookie has a bit of a political background to it. In 1992 Family Circle Magazine was inspired by Hillary Clinton who while campaigning for her husband Bill Clinton said, “I suppose I could have stayed home and baked cookies and had teas.” Well that did not sit well with some American’s who saw the comment as bashing homemakers. As well American’s saw the first lady as their primary hostess and expected them to manage the White House’s extensive public entertaining and schedule and state events. Hillary managed to turn this gaff into a political victory however when Family Circle Magazine organized a cookie bake off between her and then first lady Barbara Bush. Since then every time there is a political election there is a cookie recipe contest between the candidates wives. I can not help but wonder what would have happened if Hilary Clinton had beat Barak Obama for the democratic nomination in 2008. Would Bill simply have re-submitted Hillary’s recipe? Does he have one of his own? Perhaps we’ll find out some day…
Whatever your political leaning may be, these are darn good cookies. Enjoy! ~ Anne
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 cup shortening
- 1 cup packed brown sugar
- 1/2 cup white sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 eggs
- 2 cups rolled oats
- 2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C). Grease baking sheets. Combine flour, salt and baking soda on waxed paper.
Beat together shortening, sugars and vanilla in large bowl until creamy. Add eggs and beat until light and fluffy.
Gradually beat in flour mixture. Stir in rolled oats and then chocolate chips. (I like to toss in an extra handful of chips if I have enough.)
Drop batter by rounded teaspoonfuls onto baking sheets. Bake for 8-10 minutes or till golden. Cool cookies on sheets on a wire rack for 2 minutes.
Then remove cookies to finish cooling completely on wire rack. (If you can stand to wait that long…)
racks to cool completely.
This recipe makes about 4 dozen cookies.
Oct 09 2012
Anne Green Age 10
Want to Know what I looked like when I was a kid? Now you do!
A. Age: 46 WOW… when did that happen!
B. Bed Size: Queen. Never thought I’d want a king… then we started letting the dog get up on the bed now and then. That was probably a mistake.
C. Chore you dislike: Cleaning out the kitchen sink drain. Has to be done daily and it’s gross.
D. Dogs: Ellie the Airedale Terrier, she’s a rescue from Kansas via AireCanada.com. She even has her own facebook page!
E. Essential start to your day: A hot cuppa tea and an Adult Essential Gummy Vitamin! Cause grown-ups should have fun vitamins too! (Now if I could find a pair of light up sneakers in my size life would be complete!)
F. Favorite Color: I never liked this question. Favorite color for what? Clothing? Bedroom walls? Birthday cake icing? Christmas wrapping paper?
G. Gold or Silver: Are you making fun of the silver that has begun appearing in my hair? That’s not nice.
H. Height: 5’7”
I. Instruments you play(ed): None, though my mother, an antique dealer, did have a baby grand piano put into our living room. None of us played. She used it to serve hor’dourves when she hosted cocktail parties.
J. Job Title: Entrepreneur, Mississauga Kids Guide Publisher, Philanthropist, Mentor
K. Kids: One handsome, amazing, responsible, kind, savvy, messy, drives me nutso son who is leaving the nest for university soon!
L. Live: In Mississauga of course!
M. Mom’s Name: Karen, she left us too soon. I wish iPhone had an app that let you phone heaven.
N. Nicknames: Never had one… that I know of!
O. Overnight Hospital Stays: When I was in grade one I had pneumonia, they made me sleep in a crib instead of a big girl bed, that really made me angry. Obviously the mental scars remain. Later I stayed for 2 nights after my son was born by cesarean.
P. Pet Peeves: Pettiness, Mean Girls, People who don’t give their spare furniture to the Mississauga Furniture Bank. (Yes, that last one was a plug for one of my favorite causes.)
Q. Quote from a movie: “Well, then. Now. I’ll begin at the beginnin’. A fine soft day in the spring, it was, when the train pulled into Castletown, three hours late as usual, and himself got off. He didn’t have the look of an American tourist at all about him. Not a camera on him; what was worse, not even a fishin’ rod.” ~ Father Lonergan narrating the beginning of “The Quiet Man”. I just love that movie.
R. Righty or Lefty: Righty, buy both my siblings are left handed… not sure what that means…
S. Siblings: I have two. One younger brother, he owns Cactus Mailing in Scottsdale, Arizona. He’s a brilliant businessman. One younger sister, she is a sergeant in the Orange County Sheriffs Dept. in New York. Don’t mess with her, trust me, just don’t.
T. Time you wake up: 6 am on weekdays, 7am on the week ends. I’ll probably get up later once my nest empties out.
U. Underwear: Only my husband knows…
V. Vegetables you don’t like: I can’t think of any… oh maybe hot peppers!
W. What makes you run late: The phone… it always rings on my way out the door and I can’t resist picking it up!
X. X-rays you’ve had: Dental, and I broke my femur in grade 7. Do mammograms count? Make sure you get yours! It’s not as bad as you think it will be.
Y. Yummy foods you make: I enjoy making my Dad’s famous rum cake. I also like to make soup with whatever leftovers I have in the fridge. Sometimes it’s great… sometimes it’s just okay.
Z. Zoo Animal Favorites: The gorillas, they are so much like us I could sit and watch them for hours!
Oct 02 2012
Last year my father (known for his AMAZING Rum Cake) and his very close friend Lucy came into town for Thanksgiving. Lucy and I cooked dinner together. We decided to make a recipe she had found but never tried. The recipe was from a famous TV show chef, Ina Garten, and involved truffle butter. Do you know what truffle butter is? I didn’t. We contemplated leaving it out… but then I got on the internet. If you are reading this you are obviously familiar with the internet as well!
I googled around and found out that I could get truffle butter at the Cheese Boutique in Etobicoke. So Dad, Lucy, and I piled in the car and off we went to this fancy cheese place. Well… we got in the door and just about thought we’d all died and gone to gourmand heaven! If you have never been there I suggest you cancel all you activities for tomorrow afternoon and GO! (You may need more time if you don’t live in the GTA.) Leave me a comment below once you’ve gone. I can not wait to read about your experience there!
Anyway… here’s the recipe. Do something special this year, splurge on some truffle butter. You won’t regret it!
Photo reprinted from the book Barefoot Contessa: How Easy is That? By Ina Garten, © 2010 by Ina Garten
1 (12 to 14 lbs) fresh kosher turkey, giblets removed
3 oz white truffle butter, room temperature*
Kosher salt and ground black pepper
1 large yellow onion, unpeeled and cut into 8 wedges
1 head garlic, unpeeled and cut in half crosswise
1 bunch thyme
Extra virgin olive oil
1. Heat oven to 325 degrees F. Drain any juices from the turkey cavity and place on a rack in a large roasting pan, breast side up. Pat dry with paper towels. Working from the large cavity end, gently run your fingers between the skin and the meat to loosen the skin, taking care not to tear it. (Don’t do this with rings on your fingers!) Place the softened truffle butter under the skin and gently spread the butter evenly over the whole breast. (Be generous with the butter!)
2. Sprinkle the cavity generously with salt and pepper. Place the onion, garlic, and half of the thyme in the cavity. Tie legs together with kitchen string and tie one length of string around the bird and the wings to keep wings close to the body. Brush the turkey all over with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Remove 1 tbsp of leaves from remaining thyme, chop them, and sprinkle on turkey.
3. Roast the turkey until a meat thermometer placed in the center of the breast registers 160 degrees F, 2 1/2 to 3 hours. Don’t baste the turkey. About halfway through, when the breast is golden brown, cover the breast loosely with foil to prevent the skin from burning. Remove the turkey from the oven, cover tightly with foil, and allow to rest in the pan for 15 to 20 minutes. Garnish with thyme sprigs and serve with the pan juices. Serves 8.
By the way… The Cheese Boutique is on facebook and you can fine them as @Cheese_Boutique on twitter!
Sep 29 2012
TUMBLR TUESDAY: REGISTER TO VOTE EDITION
Does it feel like election day is still ages away? It’s not; in fact, early voting began for half of the country this week. And for half of the country, if you’re not yet registered in just two weeks, you’ll lose the chance to vote entirely. That’s what happened to 6 million Americans in 2008; this year, we’re participating in National Voter Registration Day to help make sure you’re not left out.
If you’re in the US, you should see the button above on your Dashboard; click it to register through our friends at Our Time.
No matter how you feel about politics, remember that your vote has the power to make a difference for at least one critical candidate or ballot measure on your ticket. If you don’t participate in the voting booth, you allow others to make important decisions for you.
Need some inspiration? Check out this gorgeous GIF campaign from MTV’s Power of 12, a new video from the cast of Workaholics, and a gallery of voting-inclined celebs at HyperVocal.
For more info, follow National Voter Registration Day on Tumblr, or track the tag #925NVRD. You can register in person at an NVRD meetup happening near you, or phone in any questions to the Election Protection Hotline at 1-866-OUR-VOTE.
And even if you’re already registered, please reblog this post to ensure none of your followers miss it!
This Expat will be voting quietly but enthusiastically at her kitchen table with a mug of Lady Grey and a #2 pencil.