22nd November 2011, I, despite all my instincts not to make anything that requires 1 whole cup of butter and 1 whole cup of peanut butter, decided to bake a nice little batch of peanut butter cookies. I followed a recipe on BigOven titled “Mrs Fields Peanut Butter Cookies” and they came out moist, greasy and absolutely to die for. Never mind the fact that it soaked up entire pieces of paper towels with its buttery grease.
I realise that my love for baking stemmed from the desire to make other people happy. I enjoy making tasty things just so that I can deliver them to other people and watch their eyes light up with gleeeeeeee as I hand them a bunch of goodies to nom. So, I packed half these peanut butter cookie noms and shipped them off to my boyfriend for some immense personal satisfaction. I believe he found them to be quite yum.
Here’s the recipe for Mrs Fields Peanut Butter Cookies, if you should need to make any.
24th November 2011, I stayed over at James’ house. His parents were away, so I pretty much lived at his house for a few days to keep him company
and to ensure the ghosts don’t get him. So, of course, when you put the two of us together, we inevitably end up cooking up a storm. For breakfast one morning, we made some fresh crêpes (flour, milk, eggs, butter, water, pinch of salt). And filled them with (1) a mixture of melted white & dark chocolate, (2) melted peanut butter, and (3) crushed peanut butter cookies (see above).
The batter wielded so many crêpes! We had to refrigerate the rest and keep them for later. But don’t worry, we snacked on them throughout the day and even had them for breakfast the next morning! Hooray for yummy (almost) everlasting food.
The weather was somewhat unhappy with the Gold Coast on this day. See? The clouds came out to play. But I love days like these. You get to stay indoors and cuddle in bed!
Clouddddddssssss. Also, someone got a new boaaaaatttt. And it’s very nice inside.
My cuddle partner.
And then we went to Starbucks that night and shared a rather tasty gingerbread frappuccino. I believe that was our dinner, or something like that.
I did salivate at all the sweet stuff they had on display, like Christmas cookies and colourful macarons. But I didn’t have any. Because I am capable of exercising self-control.
26th November 2011, we had spinach fettuccine carbonara for dinner.
Of course, James had to look through the 2384723473 cook books on the shelf in his pantry in order to find a suitable recipe to make some creamy carbonara pasta sauce with the limited ingredients we had. We selected one from a large Jamie Oliver recipe book. It was a recipe for “linguine alla carbonara di salsiccia” (i.e. sausage carbonara). But we tweaked it in order to get it to work for the stuff we had. We used bacon instead of sausages. It all turned out pretty delicious in the end. I could’ve eaten A LOT of it.
27th November 2011, we had another improv session and made coconut rose water cookies. They turned out equally as greasy as my peanut butter cookies but tasted great! Awfully crunchy though. Maybe if they were a bit more chewy, they would have been perfect!
Yummy crunchy coconut rose water cookies! Le tasty!
James made us both some tasty dinner that night. Shoyu ramen with nori, beef and tamagoyaki! It was quite wonderful. Even his artistic presentation was wonderful ;) I think he should make it more often! *HINT*
3rd December 2011, I baked my boyfriend some heart-shaped glazed sugar cookies. They came out harder than I thought they would, but for my first attempt at glazed sugar cutout cookies, I think I did pretty alright. I had to substitute the eggs in the recipe because I realised at the last minute that we had no eggs in the house! Luckily, Google told me all about homemade egg substitutes and I went with 1 tablespoon of milled flaxseed + 3 tablespoons of water (which replaces 1 egg), just ’cause I had flaxseed meal lying around. It’s a healthier alternative too.
4th December 2011, we found 2 frolicsome cats lurking around the front garden of my house. We got close enough to them to find out their names from the tag on their collars. One’s called Rossi, the other is Gem. Rossi wasn’t too interested in us and didn’t really like us getting near him. He was more interested in stalking the taunting magpie in a nearby tree. Gem was a lot more curious about us. Also, she has an incredibly pretty tail.
This is Rossi, acting completely and utterly nonchalant. Shame I couldn’t get a picture of Gem! She was so friendly compared to Mister Brightside here.
6th December 2011, stayed over at James’ house and we attempted some ingenious cinnamon vanilla mochi pancakes. The recipe originated from La Fuji Mama’s orange mochi pancakes, but because we didn’t have any orange zest on hand, we decided to use vanilla extract and almond extract instead. We also added a dash of ground cinnamon to the batter. I love substituting ingredients!
We also baked sugar cutout cookies (yes, more sugar cookies). James pretty much devoured most of the heart-shaped cookies I made him during the past few days, so I figured it was time to bake another batch. But we did it together this time.
The star cutouts, fresh out of the oven. Even without the glaze, they tasted yummy.
Glazed in pink again, because I decided yellow food colouring wouldn’t be as appealing. And green stars would just look weird.
I dusted them with some icing sugar for a nice final touch. Don’t they look pretty?
Halfway through making the cookies, James started on his own project, which was essentially our dinner for the night: chicken tikka masala. It seemed like a lot of effort, making it almost completely from scratch. It looked very complicated from where I was standing, and the kitchen counters were littered with numerous used pots, bowls and cooking utensils by the end of it… but the tikka masala came out quite brilliant and tasted amazingly good. I was very impressed.
The über-tasty chicken tikka masala. Boyfriend’s new signature dish perhaps?
8th December 2011, dango heaven! James and I made a whole heap of pink & green dango. For the uninitiated, dango are Japanese dumplings made from mochiko (glutinous rice flour, or sweet rice flour). Read more about dango here (yes, it’s Wikipedia).
We smothered the dango sticks in ginger sugar syrup and sprinkled them with freshly toasted sesame seeds and grated coconut!
11th December 2011, James decided to put up Christmas decorations and the Christmas tree before his parents got home from their Bali trip.
Disassembled Christmas tree & decorations in those boxes behind him. Yes, James is holding a paperless toilet roll for some strange reason.
The finished product, complete with fairy lights and silver, gold & red baubles. And a big, shiny star on the top.
That said, here are some pretty artsy pictures I took while chilling in James’ room:
And then we baked some buttery chocolate chip mochi blondies! THEY ARE THE MOST AMAZING BLONDIES EVER, BELIEVE ME.
RECIPE FOR ANGIE & JAMES’ BUTTERY CHOCOLATE CHIP MOCHI BLONDIES
1/2 cup melted butter
1 cup dark brown sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 cup all purpose wheat flour
1/4 cup mochiko (glutinous rice flour)
1/4 cup melted white chocolate
1/2 cup (or more if desired) chocolate chips
- Preheat oven to 150°C.
- Line a square pan with baking paper.
- In a large bowl, mix the melted butter with the brown sugar and stir vigorously until the mixture is smooth.
- Beat the egg lightly in a separate bowl before adding it to the butter/sugar mixture.
- Add the vanilla extract and stir until all the wet ingredients are mixed well.
- Gradually add the wheat flour and glutinous rice flour, stirring until combined.
- Fold in the melted white chocolate until no white streaks remain.
- Fold in a generous amount of the chocolate chips, leaving the rest for sprinkling on top of the batter.
- Pour mixture into the baking pan and allow it to spread evenly.
- Sprinkle remaining chocolate chips on top of batter.
- Bake for approximately 30 minutes.