My favorite Chocolate Chip Cookies

Having Knox help in the kitchen is the best feeling in the world as a momma.  We were generously gifted a previously loved learning tower and our little man can safely stand in to help pour out measuring cups into a mixing bowl, while eating the chocolate chips.  My favorite part is standing at the counter together with a cup of milk and eating the still warm cookies, I love watching the joy in his face.  Knox doesn’t gorge on sweets like his parents however and it’s rare he eats a whole cookie.  Typically he picks 3-4 cookies and takes one bite before testing out another one ( guess who gets to eat the remnants- it’s a tough job… but.)  This is the recipe I always always use, they turn out perfectly soft but with a nice chew, sweet and salty, plenty of chocolate chips, and lots of flavor from the vanilla/ molasses/ cinnamon.  Here’s some images over the last 1.5 years cooking these with Knoxie.

 

Chocolate Chip Cookies
barely adapted from the little red house
1 cup butter, at room temp
1/2 c white sugar
1 3/4 c brown sugar
1/8 cup molasses
2 eggs
2 tsp pure vanilla
3 c all purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1 bag Ghiradhelli chocolate chips
Cream the butter, sugars, and molasses until light. Scrape down the side of the bowl. Continue mixing while adding the eggs one at time. Make sure each egg is incorporated before adding the next. Beat for a few minutes. Add the vanilla and mix well. Scrape down the bowl with a spatula. Combine the flour, soda, cinnamon and salt in another bowl. With a whisk, stir to combine. With the machine on low, slowly add the flour mixture and chocolate chips. Mix until just combined, taking care not to over mix. Drop by spoonful onto parchment lined cookie sheet.
Bake at 350° for 11-13 minutes.
They should be lightly golden on the outside but still soft in the middle.

Isla Lorraine

Isla Lorraine was born 10.08.2016, exactly 32 years after her momma weighing the very same 8 pounds and 6 ounces.  She’s brought so much joy to our family already, we can’t imagine life without her.  She is happy as can be, just like her brother was, but certainly asserts herself when she’s not pleased!  Every time I see her look at her brother her face lights up and she gives him the biggest smiles and his sweet voice telling her  ” hi baby!”, ” it’s okay baby Isla, sh shh”  and ” I lub you” my heart explodes.  She’s the perfect addition to our foodie family.

Classic French Mussels

mussels

 

Mussels are SO affordable ($5-6/ pound), incredibly easy to make and SO delicious.  Serve with really good french bread and some wine and it’s a whole meal.  We follow the butter, garlic, shallot, wine, parsley and cream preparation and it’s delectable every. single. time.

 

Classic French Mussels Recipe, serves 2 as a meal, 4 as an app

6 tablespoons butter, divided
2 shallots, finely chopped
4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 pounds mussels, cleaned
1 cup dry white wine
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 bunch fresh parsley, chopped
Kosher salt, pepper

Directions

Heat 2 tablespoons butter in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add the shallots and garlic and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Add wine, and allow 2-3 minutes to cook out alcohol, Then toss in you cleaned mussels, cream, remaining butter, and parsley and season well with salt and pepper. Give it a good stir, cover the pot, and cook until mussels open and are cooked through, about 10 to 15 minutes. Divide the mussels and the juices between 2 bowls and serve with the crusty bread.

The Best Creamy Hummus

Our little man is obsessed with hummus, yes- it is easy to make hummus, but it was slightly easier to just buy a container at the store.  It tastes SO gross on it’s own to us, but Knox just pounds it straight by the spoonful.  I started feeling like it’d be so much better and smarter to make this fresh for him, especially after the Listeria scare with Sabra hummus.  Using my sister’s recipe and an Ina Garten recipe, I combined the best of both and edited to our tastes to make The BEST Creamiest Hummus- with no oil.  Knox Approved and Parent Tested!!

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Makes 3 cups of Hummus

INGREDIENTS
1 TBSP butter
1/2 red onion, sliced
4 cloves garlic, smashed and rough large chop
1/2 cup tahini, sesame paste
2 cans organic chickpeas: 1 drained, 1 with juices
1/2 tsp white pepper
1.5 tsp salt
1/4 cup lemon juice

Directions:

In a non stick pan over medium/ low heat, add the butter, once melted slowly sauté the onion and garlic in the pan until caramelized.

Set up the food processor fitted with the steel blade.   Add the sauteed onion and garlic mixture and puree till mostly smooth.  Add in the rest of the ingredients to the food processor and process until the hummus is smooth and creamy.  Taste, for seasoning, and serve chilled or at room temperature.

Read more at: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ina-garten/hummus-recipe.html?oc=linkback

Date Night at Home | Pizza Party

When you want to stay home, nice and warm, but still have a fun “Date Night”- throw a pizza party!  Finding the silver lining of all this cold weather, for us, has been to make staying in fun, stay home, relaxed and cozy cozy.  Making an active dinner is a way to have FUN date, and you don’t have to go far or spend a lot of money at all, even wear your pj’s.  We had store bought pizza dough from Trader Joe’s, they’re pizza sauce too, mozzarella, black olives, artichokes.. use what you have- chop it up and roll out some dough.  I call this active cooking because you are eating while you cook the next little pizza treat, drinking some beer and relaxing in the kitchen ( as opposed to sitting in front of the TV while scarfing down your meal and not talking- this happens to everyone else right?)  We make super thin small pizzas and snack on them as we make them.  Have some good music on- no TV, and enjoying being home!  If you want to make your own dough- check a favorite recipe here

pizza copy

pizzaJj copy