Confession: I get THE biggest ego boost from watching my coworkers gobble up my baked goods. I love how I can bake ANYTHING I want and know that people at work will eat it – it’s the simple pleasures in life, people.
And the best part is, they think I’m just being extremely generous or whatever, but really I bake for selfish reasons…it’s the best boredom buster! Plus they’re really doing me a favor, because more times than not, most of the stuff I bake would just sit around the apartment and mold over (like last few slices of blueberry coffee cake from last week – pity).
It’s turning into a once a week thing, these baking adventures of mine. This week’s baked good was Oatmeal Cranberry White Chocolate Cookies. It’s quite a mouthful to say, right? After throwing out one batch of applesauce, margarine and brown sugar that refused to cream, I decided to nix the fat substitutions this time…with cookies, you need the butter. Trust me on this.
I did use whole wheat flour instead of white, though, only because I was too lazy to dig the white flour out of the cabinet. It’s kind of a mess, you see. This resulted in more of a mini-scone instead of a cookie, which I kind of dug (as well as everyone at work…the 30 cookies I brought were scarfed in a matter of five hours between 6 people!). The scone part was not too sweet at all, but with the multitude of craisins and white chocolate chunks, it was no big loss. They were also easy on the eyes – I mean, all baked goods are beautiful (except maybe lowfat brownies, you know, the ones that look dry and cakey…ugh), but these were especially pretty.
Oatmeal Cranberry White Chocolate “Mini Scone” Cookies
Taken from an Ocean Spray Magazine ad (LOL), serves 24-30 (depending on cookie size)
– 2/3 cups butter
– 2/3 cups brown sugar
– 2 eggs
– 1.5 cups old fashioned oats
– 1/5 cups whole wheat flour
– 1/2 tsp salt
– 1 tsp baking soda
– 3/4 6 oz. Craisins bag
– 2/3 cup white chocolate chunks.
Preheat oven to 375. Cream butter and brown sugar together, then add eggs, one at a time. Make sure you incorporate the eggs well. In a separate bowl, mix together the salt, flour, oats and baking soda, then slowly mix into the wet ingredients in three batches. Next, stir in cranberries and white chocolate. Spray a cookie sheet with cooking spray, then roll tablespoon+ size balls of dough in your palm and place on the cookie sheet. The cookies don’t really spread because of the whole wheat flour + oats (I think), so make sure you flatten the cookies out once they’re on the baking sheet. Bake for 10-12 minutes, then cool on a cooling rack.
In other news, I ate a heavenly bison burger at a cool build-your-own burger place called Graze last night! There are 18 different patties to choose from (alligator, grass fed beef, falafel, black bean, duck, WILD BOAR (?!), etc.) and even more toppings. I love customization, so this place was heaven. I gotta say, I haven’t had a burger with red meat in a while (I find red meat to be kind of boring sometimes, plus I always seem to find something more interesting to eat outside of the burger/steak field), so this burger was like a reawakening for my soul – the soul that eats juicy, delicious red meat.
Sorry vegetarians/vegans/whoever else that might have offended. I just can’t describe how beautiful it was for me to eat a delicious burger again. I felt like I was reunited with a part of my soul.
Basically you choose your patty, then your toppings, possibly a side, then eat! So simple! I chose bison + pepper jack cheese (my love), sprouts (weird, I know, but I really wanted sprouts in my life), sauteed mushrooms and onions, and pickles. Because what’s a burger without pickles? And mustard. For my side, I considered the fruit bowl, but I haven’t had a full serving of fries in so long that I just decided to go whole hog (bison?) and order sweet potato fries.
Wonderful decision on my part.
The fries were yummy, but in all honesty, I think I like baked sweet potato fries better than fried. But I will always like regular french fries the less healthy way – deep fried and salted. The burger, however, was DIVINE. My topping choices were excellent, but the star was definitely the bison. It was so juicy and meaty and…YUM. I want another.
This is easily a place you can go to again and again – to me all of the different combos would keep it from seeming repetitive! They also had a nice build-your-own salad menu. Aesthetically, Graze was nothing out of the ordinary – colorful walls, nice bathrooms (this is important to me), and pretty spacious. I can’t wait to go back again – I’m thinking boar. I mean really, it would be cool to be like, “YO, I ATE WILD BOAR LAST NIGHT.”
Two more things.
First, I saw Eclipse today. I go into these movies expecting to laugh hysterically at all of the corniness, but Eclipse was just plain terrible. I genuinely think that Rob Pattinson and Kristen Stewart are decent actors, but they have NOTHING to work with in these movies. Eclipse consisted of constipated expressions, brain-melting, mushy “discussions” about love, and freaky gold contacts. I was too bored to laugh, too freaked out by the contacts, and too baffled at how the makeup artists managed to make Rob Pattinson that ugly. The only thing I can say for any of these movies is that the soundtracks are all awesome. Oh, and read this. My opinion of the movies and books sunk to a new level.
And finally, I finished Never Let Me Go, by Kazuo Ishiguru. It was just made into a movie starring Keira Knightley and Carey Mulligan (SO AWESOME), so I felt I needed to read the book before seeing the movie. It was SO good! Ishiguro definitely has a unique writing style which took me a bit to get used to, but I can see why he’s won so many writing awards. The book is set in a post WWII G. Britain, kind of a dystopia novel. It’s about clones who grow up at a boarding school called Hailsham and prepare themselves to be donors. Basically their sole purpose is to be a source of organs for regular humans.
Whew, long post. Hopefully not too long…right?