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Saturday, July 9, 2011

Confessions of the Cookie Basket

"Did you leave some cookies for me?" I often hear that question as well as this comment, "She bakes all these wonderful cookies and doesn't leave me any." Those would come from my eternal optimist of all things baked. I can always justify my answers. "Doll, I left a (as in one) cookie for you if you want." or "But Doll, these are for........." At no time do I feel that I've let him down, because, hey, he can lick my bowls anytime. But you, whoever you are, I feel as if I have somehow left you out and that I must somehow apologize.

If you look back (far back, I'm afraid) you will see actual cookies on this blog.  Or now on my Flicker photostream.  I've known for some time that I haven't been matching my posts with my title very well. So what's a cookie/baker to do? Hence the apology...

If you are still with me I will share a few of my most recent efforts and humbly offer my explanation(s)

First there was the garden. That's what did it...I got off track.  That's my story and I'm sticking to it...Pleeze?  So, veggie-related posts just appeared on The Cookie Basket.  I was out of control. 

And ...
Then week ONE of G.S.A. School of Music...  (check out this wonderful school link!)

Now, wait...OK, I admit...the picture is not pretty, but doesn't it tell you a story? It was GOOD!. This really was good...Mixed Berry Pie Cobbler with real whipped cream topping.     But  you are right, no cookies here!

A G Clef in dough....cute?  Maybe.  Eatable?  Absolutely not!  But it would have made a great crowbar....and nope, not a cookie.

Another music symbol in dough...supposed to be a quarter note (but it really made a nifty "j")

The "baker" of bakersmom  with  her fabulous tall coconut cake. (Still at GSA) and you get the co____.

And one last GSA picture...On the fourth of July what better way to celebrate?  A faux ice cream.  You've seen them before...Cake dough baked in a wafer ice cream cone cup and topped with fluffly icing and sprinkles 

Cell phone pictures...(sigh)

What's going on? 

You see, my daughter, the RN/Baker, and I volunteered to provide desserts during GSA's summer session for three weeks and that we did.  But do you have any idea how much time baking desserts for 125  people for lunch and then again at supper takes?  Okay, many of you do.  We absolutely LOVED it!  But a camera was obviously not top on the list.  Now, I am so sorry.  Night one?  Up to 2 AM prepping our famly recipe for chocolate pie for Tuesday's lunch.  It was divine.  But we were too tired to run back to the room to get a camera and then before we knew it...they were gone!  YUMMY.  But once again (hanging head) they were not cookies.  But many thought the crust on the bottom was a cookie ....does that count?

Homemade pie crusts:  While I can't give away this recipe, we made individual pie crust rounds using 1/2 shortening and 1/2 lard (THE KEY TO FLAKEY CRUST),  baked and placed in the bottom of  serving cups.  Divine chocolate custard was cooked, cooled and added to each cup. IT is a family recipe... my Mom's to be exact!   All were topped with whipped cream and chilled.  (OK, okay, OKAY...we used Cool Whip) The actual recipe uses meringue, but how can you brown anything in a clear plastic serving dish?  Now, I've come clean with you.... that felt better.  And people thought they were finding a cookie treasure on the bottom.  See...they "thought" we had made cookies!

More pictures of creme cheese pound cakes, dirt cake, lemon curd filled vanilla cup cakes, creme cheese brownies, peach cobbler, apple-pear cobbler, chocolate creme pie, blueberry cobbler, chocolate sugar cookies, pecan kisses, chocolate chip cookies, New York style cheesecake, cinnamon rolls, biscotti, doughnuts, Jenn's banana pudding and I've run out of brain cells to remember any more. Can I say that we gained a LOT of experience working with professional size ovens and portions?  You bettcha!

  Yes, you must visualize their beautiful tenderness.  Because the pictures are invisible.  I am guilty as charged.

Another confession:  I didn't stay all three weeks.  There--- that's out, too.   At the end of the second week I WENT ON A CRUISE for four days leaving the "baker" of bakersmom alone in the kitchen. (gasp!)   But her son (my grandson) and sister (my daughter) came to the rescue for a few days. 

As for me...Cozumel, Mexico

And our first night's cruise animal should have told me much food, oh, my!   Oink, oink!  Isn't he cute?

Then back home again on week 3 to take my first Cake Decorating Classes.  See my first pansy?  Gum paste and fondant.  I'm in earthly bliss!!!!  I will keep practicing!

Then back to GSA to finish week three.

Rolls...14 cups of flour
+ yeast, dry milk, eggs,  salt, butter!
Yes, this is only one of the panS.
and yes, you observed cookies....

GSA all done! Loaded up all our baking "stuff" and came home to
My birthday dinner and dessert with family....
My "Baker/RN" daughter caved in and bought a cake from the local store.  I think I forgive her...I understand.  Thank you SO much!


My "doll" husband gave me flowers, special teas, a framed scripture and his special adoration...  Better than any decorated cookie, I'd say! see I've been kinda busy...with life.  And I didn't even put in checking in with my Mom and other "stuff".  Life is full of surprises and twists and turns.  One must only fall into the pace of those we love and enjoy the journey.  Baking and decorating cookies?  They are only a part of that journey.  Now, I've confessed a few of my shortcomings with this blog.  Hopefully some of you can forgive me.  I am still in such awe of those of you who seem to have endless access to time, butter, sugar and expert skills.  I'm just enjoying the journey and observing yours :)

OBTW....the school?  Our two youngest grandsons finished their courses and one received a trophy for his age group!  So worth the effort!!!! To God be all glory and honor!!!!!!!!!

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