This is it, people. I’m getting down and dirty and a little bit crazy. Starting tomorrow, I’m going all Gwyneth Paltrow-level insanity and starting a 3-day juice cleanse. The fancy kind that some glossy, lithe delivery person brings to your house. I KNOW. But for now, there are these freaking great Chocolate-Slicked Toffee-Oat Tiles, which were kind of my last hurrah before embarking on a week of living like a deranged Hollywood starlet wannabe. My enthusiasm is palable, yes?
Oh, 2012. Here you are, all shiny and new and full of promise. Unlike the yoga pants I’ve been wearing nonstop since December 27th, which are dull and old and full of pills. But you know what, 2012? You’re encouraging me to move forward. Put on some pants that have an actual waistband, no matter how excruciating that might be. It’s a brand new year and I’m feeling terrific about the whole thing.
To celebrate, I thought I’d throw a little extra something into my favorite meringue cookie recipe, which tends to appear about this time every year, when rich, heavy desserts have become too much, but I’m not so crazy as to forgo sweets altogether. And to up the ante, I’m adding a bright punch of flavor with sweet, fragrant Meyer lemons, which are the kind of glorious thing that will make even the laziest folk rise from their post-holiday stupor.
With the holidays upon us, I’m sure we’re all looking for a ways to be a little more generous with our time, while figuring out how to be more efficient. I don’t think it gets much more generous or efficient than these Malted Brown Sugar Cookie Sandwiches. And by that I mean I’m giving you a totally legit way to eat two cookies at once. Hooray!
But these little beauties aren’t just about the cookie part. Although that part is quite spectacular, all chewy with crisp edges, salty-sweet, and a hit of malt…ooh, sweet babies of brown sugar, they are a delight all on their own. What really takes it all over the edge is a filling that I might say contained pure magic, if I hadn’t made it up myself and knew full well that I was plumb out of magic on that particular day. It’s a kind of creamy, dreamy, malty vanilla buttercream, the sort of thing with which you might be very, very prone to steal away, like, say, purposefully into a dark closet, spoon clutched in hand.
Okay, do you even know what’s happening right now? Well, probably not, so I’ll tell you. I’m writing from an airplane on a flight from San Francisco to Los Angeles to throw a baby shower for my best friend in the entire universe. The flight is a short one, thankfully, just a little over an hour. And I say thankfully, because right before take off, I got a text message saying, “I’m here! Just let me know when you’re out front!”. Meaning that I gave her my departure time instead of my arrival time. Not very best friend-like of me AT ALL. Especially considering she is six weeks away from giving birth, and should be sprawled on a sofa somewhere, not suffering from for her mentally-challenged friend’s inability to get her details straight.
I can’t even tell you how bad I feel right now, on this slow-moving airplane, having made this completely stupid mistake. I am hoping the stash of Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Biscotti I have tucked in my bag will make a suitable peace offering. I am also grateful that she is considerably more patient and understanding than I, because if I was eight months pregnant waiting in an In-N-Out parking lot for my scatterbrained friend, I’d be quite willing to tell her where she could put her Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Biscotti.
For reference, let’s begin with an example of how criminally easy this recipe is. It’s so easy that I managed to throw this together at the tail end of a volatile weekend alone with my Sybil-esque three-year-old, the result of my trying to be all Cool Wife and encouraging my husband to head out of town for a reunion weekend with his fraternity brothers.
Summary: Make this super simple recipe; three-year-olds can age you 12 years in two days; playing Cool Wife will only serve to bring you down.
Tell me, would it be wholly unappetizing to you all if I referred to today’s recipe as “Penicillin Cookies”? Because truly, that’s kind of what went down here in the Piece of Cake kitchen the other day. A totally delicious, happy accident. Hooray! I love when that happens.
What started out as a twist on the classic Anzac Cookie quickly became something else entirely when, as is wont to happen around these parts, I completely stopped paying attention to what I was doing and added chocolate to a too-warm cookie dough. And because I love nothing more than MacGyvering my way through life, the Nubbly Chocolate, Oat and Coconut Cookie was born, and hopefully will be coming together in your own kitchen, on purpose, at your earliest convenience.
After the debacle of last week, I’ve reprogrammed a bit. Which is to say that I’ve done a lot of organizing, de-cluttering, and otherwise simplifying. And not to sound all woo-woo or anything, but has anyone else out there felt a sort of cosmic shift recently? Maybe it has to do with that August-becoming-September thing and Little C turning three any second now (three!!). Or maybe it has to do with pulling the trigger on officially sending my crazy cookbook off to the printers, after which I experienced a most interesting sensation, not unlike that of impending childbirth, teetering the line between crying and barfing. Come to think of it, finishing my first book just as my first baby is turning three must mean something, right? Let’s just say it means that everyone can stop asking me about “baby number twoooo??” in a creepy sing-songy voice, because hey, people, I did just sort of give birth again.
Anyway, all of this to say that I just can get enough of paring down these days as a way to take a breather. It’s getting intense, guys. I’ve been wearing only my bathrobe for quite some time after showering. I am reading an actual book in my downtime. Listening to a lot of Iron and Wine. Lighting pretty candles just for the heck of it. The other day for lunch, I had some white beans mixed with tuna in a lovely antique bowl, dressed simply with a bit of avocado oil and lemon. As I chewed, I thought, This must be how Gwyneth Paltrow feels ALL THE TIME. It’s kind of magical, and for the ten more minutes that this phase lasts, I’m really going to enjoy myself.
But I haven’t completely gone off the deep end. I definitely have been eating dessert, and a dang good one at that. And it fits fantastically into my less-is-more vacation. Come along, won’t you?
sites i love
This work is licensed under a
Creative Commons License.