I've had some ups and down with this whole job search things. I have been hired by Oregon Health and Science University, but have been waiting a month for them to iron out all the paper work, HR details and back ground checks: Monday holds great anticipation. So while I’m living on my email, and trying to not distract Chris from studying, I have been doing more cooking. And surprisingly more baking! Nothing special, but baking is more scientific than cooking. It takes more energy, uses more tools, requires more concentration- all things that I typically would not stand for after a long day of work. Cooking on the other hand lets me explore and be forgivingly creative.
Chris has really been my biggest fan up here. He is always trying to get me to stay positive about waiting to start work. He reads most of my blogs. He makes sure I’m staying sane during the day. AND He eats everything I make (almost everything). Secretly, I think he likes having me around during the day. When he locks himself into study mode, I usually end up in the kitchen whipping up some new creation, snack, happy hour, or goodie.
The “just us” time together has been really good. We miss all the students. We miss our friends. We miss our phones ringing with things to do and people to see. But, it’s been good to get to know each other on a quieter level. Confession: we’re really old souls at heart. We like fine wine, board games, cards, early mornings, the smell of books, learning from famous dead people. Well, maybe I like all those things and Chris puts up with them for me… but I kind of doubt it.
A grey afternoon led to Peanut Butter Waffle Cookies and Scrabble. This combo is highly recommended.
USUALLY peanut butter cookies are rounded out and then pressed with a cross fork pattern. But sometimes things change when your spouse enters the scene. Chris was dinking around (as he likes to call it) in the utensils drawer and said “it’s a shame we don’t use this thing more often?” holding up the meat pounder. Truth be told, I never think to use it. We bought it after our memorable first abalone experience… no one ever told me you have to pound the bleepity-bleep out of it before cooking. And thus we bought one.
So Chris cleverly “waffled” my little dough ball and we both thought they were surprisingly cute.
This got me thinking- there are probably so many tools in the kitchen that people put to other uses! I want to hear about it! Please share them. I’ve recently started using are my tongs to juice a lemon or a lime. Thanks to Michael Symon… again. Hopefully he doesn’t think I’m stalking him, it’s just so handy for my small hands.
Chewy Peanut Butter (Waffle “Chris-Cut”) Cookies
2 ¾ cups all- purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
¼ tsp salt
1 cup butter softened
1 cup creamy peanut butter (I’m a chunky fan on any other day)
1 cup packed brown sugar
½ cup granulated sugar
2 tbs corn syrup (light or dark)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 large eggs
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Combine dry ingredients in a bowl. In a separate bowl, beat at a medium speed: butter, peanut butter, white and brown sugars until creamy. Then add corn syrup, vanilla, and the eggs one at a time. Then at low speed gently add the dry mix into the wet mix.
Roll dough into rounded 1 ½ inch balls and PRESS WITH YOUR MEAT POUNDER (note: I sprayed my pounder with cooking spray if and when it stuck to the dough.
Bake 11-13 minutes- ish…
This recipe came out of, and slightly adjusted from, Good Housekeeping Favorite Recipes: Cookies! It actually belonged to an old roommate of mine: Bree Rios. It got it mixed up in the move and I held onto it in case I ever ran into her. But until then, it’s safe and sound and getting good use. J