Cowboy Cookies

Oh my goodness! It has been a while again. I am so sorry!

Those of you who know me will know that I love politics. I do Model UN and international relations are a huge part of my life, and I love following politics.

So, it is certainly fitting that this recipe actually came from an incredibly political family. A Texan political family with two presidents and another presidential hopeful of “please clap” notoriety. Can you guess who I am talking about? Yup, the Bush family. This recipe came up while I was whiling away my hours on the NY Times food website in the cookie section. Apparently, these cookies were featured in an article that came out during the 2000 election cycle, before I was born, about the baking of the first lady. Um, why is it just the wives cooking? Let’s get the candidates in the kitchen. Anyhow, they are the cookies of Laura Bush. I wonder if these cookies were eaten in the White House. In case you were wondering, these cookies were eaten on the campus of Castilleja School, where the future white-house dwellers are educated.

I did make substantial edits to this recipe. First off, they had enough butter to be a Paula Deen recipe, so that had to change. Secondly, they also had all sorts of crunchy things, but not pretzels. That also had to change immediately. I also did not have pecans, so I used walnuts.

So here’s the recipe. I hope you enjoy these, perhaps while pondering Trump’s racism, xenophobia and rampant sexism.

– Eliza in the Palo Alto kitchen

note: this makes around 3 to 3.5 dozen cookies.

Eliza’s Cowboy Cookies

Ingredients:

  • 2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 tablespoon baking soda
  • tablespoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/4 cups (2.5 sticks) butter, at room temperature
  • 1 ½ cups granulated sugar
  • 1 ½ cups packed light-brown sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla
  • 3 cups semisweet chocolate chips
  • 3 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 2 cups usweetened flake coconut
  • cup chopped pecans or walnuts (4 ounces)
  • 1 cup chopped pretzels

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350˚ Fahrenheit.
  2. Whisk flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt together to combine.
  3. Cream butter and sugars together until fluffy.
  4. Add the eggs to the butter-sugar mixture one at a time, scraping down the bowl after each addition. Add vanilla.
  5. Mix dry ingredients, just until combined.
  6. Mix chocolate chips, rolled oats, coconut, nuts and pretzels into the bowl. It will be hard to mix, but just keep going, it all will come together eventually.
  7. Using a 1/4 cup measuring cup, scoop out cookies and place on a baking tray laid with parchment paper.
  8. Bake for around 15 minutes, then let cool on a cooling rack.

IMG_3837IMG_3836 (1)

Advertisements

Chef Forrest’s Blondies

Our many Castilleja School readers will recognize this recipe, although it appears just once a year. The last minutes we spend at school before the summer vacation are spent eating these blondies, as they are the fonder for many hungry middle schoolers after 8th grade promotion, baked by the inimitable Casti kitchen staff. I can definitely tell you that these blondies are one of the main reasons why Promotion is 10x better than Class Day, a day so boring that they give the sixth graders bingo cards to keep them entertained. After watching two different classes be promoted to the Upper School, it is finally our turn to dress in our finest dress whites and receive fancy diplomas (possibly even make some speeches). I am excited to move on to our next chapter, but I am very sad to be saying goodbyes way too early to several members of the class of 2020. You will be missed! If I could keep everyone at Casti, I would. I know that I will be making a batch of these simply delicious blondies to eat after finals (and some of you may be lucky enough to snag a few). I can easily replicate the simple, sweet and toffee-y (yes that is totally a word) flavor of these yummy treats, but not the feeling that yet another year has ended and another era is about to begin.

So, whether or not you go to Casti, please enjoy making this recipe as you think about new beginnings and remember that as one door closes, another opens.

** also please note, this recipe is the simplest I have ever made. You cannot screw these up, so if you are looking a recipe to dive into baking, this is it. It will definitely impress your family, and you can feel very smug about the effort to praise ratio of this recipe.

Chef Forrest’s Blondies

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup butter (room temp)
  • 2 1/2 cups brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • optional! 1/2 cup chocolate chips (if you must; for the authentic version please skip these)

Directions:

  1. Cream butter and sugar. Add eggs one at a time. Add vanilla and remaining ingredients, until just incorporated.
  2. Spread on buttered/floured square brownie pan (mine is 9×5).
  3. Bake at 350˚ Fahrenheit for 25 min.
  4. Cut after cooling. Enjoy!

Quick + Easy Scones

Hi blog readers! It’s been a while AGAIN. Our sincerest apologies.

So. Scones. I don’t know about you but I am an afternoon tea aficionado. I have been at Claridges, the Empress Hotel in Victoria, the Drake in Chicago and the Garden Court here in San Francisco. I absolutely adore afternoon tea. It makes me feel like I am Lady Mary, about to go meet my dashing race car-driving husband or follow the hunt in some utterly fabulous clothes. Simply put, I feel like a queen.

The most important part of afternoon (other than the tea) is the scones. Taken with lemon curd and clotted cream, they are divine. I recently hosted (along with Michal) a petite afternoon tea with some friends. Because clotted cream is incredibly annoying to make, I made whipped cream instead. Michal made some incredible lemon curd, and I made these. The group made quite a refined trio.

I will be posting more from the tea party soon, but let’s start with these scones.

Zuni Cafe Scones 

IMG_2370.jpeg

ingredients:

  • 1.5 cups flour
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoon baking powder
  • Dash of salt
  • 1 stick of butter (VERY VERY COLD)
  • 1 ½ teaspoon freshly grated orange zest (optional)
  • 1 egg yolk
  • ¼ cup whole milk

directions: 

  1. Preheat oven to 350˚ Fahrenheit and line a baking tray with parchment paper.
  2. Combine flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in a large bowl. Mix well.
  3. Using a pastry cutter, cut the butter into the dry ingredients. Continue cutting until you achieve tiny pea size butter chunks.
  4. Whisk together egg yolk and milk, and add to the bowl.
  5. Stir to combine, then knead with your hands until the dough comes together.
  6. Roll dough out with a rolling pin, and cut into triangles.
  7. Bake for 25 minutes, then let cool for 5 minutes on the pan.
  8. Enjoy! These are best warm and make a great breakfast if you have leftovers 🙂

 

Creamy Lemon Pasta with Chicken and Tomatoes

Hi blog readers!

We apologize for our absence of posts these past few weeks.We were taking a holiday hiatus because things caught up with both of us. Sorry! However, buckle your seat belts because 2016 is going to GREAT for the Flour Power Girls. We have a whole lineup of incredible posts ready for you over the next few weeks.

This year, I really want to get more involved with savory things. My parents would DEFINITELY appreciate not having to cook dinner every night, and I get excited just thinking about the whole new world of recipes that dinner, lunch and meals that don’t involve baked goods bring to the table. I received a few top notch cookbooks this year, including The Sugar Hit! by one of my all-time favorite bloggers, Sarah, Veganomicon by Isa Moskowitz and Terry Romero, and Voracious by Cara Nicoletti. I am so psyched to cook from them! Yay!

And on to the recipe. We’re kicking off our new savory section with this cream-sauce pasta recipe.

Get ready, because what I am about to tell you might shock you. DISCLAIMER: Flour Power Girls cannot be held legally responsible for your actions after reading the following sentence.

This super-thick, creamy pasta has NO CREAM. Yes. You can laugh in disbelief, but it is 110% true.

It is so so fast, with minimal prep, and the results are incredible. Trust me. This pasta tastes indulgent and rich, but definitely doesn’t come close to the foooooood cooooooma stage. In fact, it’s relatively light. It has some heat, refreshing lemon, lean protein, and healthy greens. It may just be the perfect meal.

Creamy Lemon Pasta with Chicken and Tomatoes.

Serves 4

Ingredients:

For the chicken:

  • 2 chicken breasts
  • 2 teaspoons salt, divided
  • 2 teaspoons pepper, divided
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes, divided

For the pasta:

  • 3/4 lb pasta, preferably spaghetti or another thin, long pasta (ie tagliatelle)
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 4 cloves of minced garlic
  • 2 lemons, juiced and zested
  • 3/4 cup greek yogurt (yes, nonfat totally works!) or creme fraiche
  • 1 cup shredded Parmesan
  • 1 cup arugula or spinach (stems removed)
  • 1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, halved

Instructions:

For the chicken.

  1. Preheat oven to 350 fahrenheit.
  2. Combine spices and 1/4 teaspoon pepper flakes and gently dredge chicken in spice mixture.
  3. Cook in 1 tablespoon of oil in a nonstick pan over medium heat. Flip after 3 minutes or so, developing a nice char.
  4. Transfer to a baking sheet, and bake for about 25 minutes, until chicken is fully cooked (test it please!).
  5. Let cool and cut into bite-size pieces.

For the pasta.

  1. Cook pasta according to package directions, and drain, reserving 2 tablespoons of pasta water.
  2. In pasta pot, cook garlic in remaining 2 tablespoons of oil and remaining pepper flakes.
  3. Add lemon juice, greek yogurt and pasta water.
  4. Once the sauce has thickened slightly, and greek yogurt has melted, add chicken, pasta and Parmesan. Mix well.
  5. Once the cheese has melted, add arugula/spinach and tomatoes. Combine and let wilt.

Enjoy!

All Year – French Bread

Hello baking friends! Coming fresh from the Hingham kitchen, you have… French bread! This bread is perfectly paired with butter, cheese, and everything in between! You can grill the bread and put butter on it for dinner, or just PB & J for a yummy sandwich! I made this bread today because recently my dad has been asking me to try making bread more. We have a bread machine, but sometimes it’s just easier to go basic. So, I give you easy French bread!

This bread is just so yummy! You really can do anything with it! Although this bread does take quite a while, it is fairly simple. It’s perfect on a warm summer’s night or a chilly winter morning. Yum!

Overall, this bread was a success! My dad loved it, and he even put some garlic and butter on it to make garlic bread! So Good!

~Eleanor

This is a variation of Chew Out Loud’s Crusty French Bread Recipe made by Eleanor in the Hingham Kitchen!

Ingredients:

  • 4 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 packets dry yeast
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 ½ cups of warm water*
  • 1 egg white beaten with 1 TB water

Directions:

  1. Combine flour, yeast, salt, and sugar in a large bowl. Hand whisk until well combined. Stir in the warm water gradually, until dough forms. The dough should resemble a smooth texture, but not be too sticky. Add flour or water until it resembles this teaspoon, roughly 1 TB at a time.
  2. Place dough on a lightly floured surface and knead for about 10 minutes. Roll dough into a  ball, and place in a lightly oiled bowl.* Cover bowl with saran wrap and place in a warm, draft-free place* for about 30-60. The dough should be doubled in size by now.
  3. Take the dough out of the bowl and place back onto the lightly floured surface. Pound the dough down and divide in half. Let them sit for 10 minutes, covered.
  4. Roll out dough into the shape of your desire (I made one long loaf, and one round-ish rectangle). Roll your shape lengthwise, and moisten the edges with water. Make sure the edges are sealed.
  5. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, or a silicone baking mat. Place loaves seam side down on the sheet. If they look sticky, little sprinkle them with flour. Cut diagonal slits so you can allow for the steam to rise in the oven. Brush loaves with the egg/water mixture.
  6. Lightly lay saran wrap over the loaves and place back in a warm, draft-free place for about 30 minutes. In the meantime, preheat the oven to 375 degrees, and place a large pan of water below the bread.*
  7. Bake for 15 minutes. Brush the loaves with the egg/water mixture again, and bake for another 15 minutes, or until the bread looks done.

Ta-Da! You have completed delicious French bread!

*1. Oil the bowl with vegetable oil, olive oil, or melted coconut oil.

*2. Places include: oven turned off, microwave, and above the refrigerator.

*3. A pan of water below the bread will give the bread a golden crispy crust with a soft inside.

Modern Crustless Pumpkin Pie

Listen up folks, today we have something you are NOT expecting…crustless pie! You heard me right, a CRUSTLESS pie! The most important part of the pumpkin pie is the filling, so the more the filling, the merrier! Right? Why not have the whole pie be filling! Be prepared to eat the pie right out of the pan, maybe the whole thing;)

October is a month of pumpkins, scarfs, slippers, and all things fall! So this month, we are going to try to do a pumpkin showcase! Bere with us, we will do our best with Pumpkin Month! We are so excited, so let the pumpkin-filled games begin!

This pie is super fun and modern! I thought it was going to be much harder, but it was surprisingly easy! Make this pie if you are craving a delicious, sweet, flavor-filled treat!

Pictures to come!

This pie is adapted from Sally’s Baking Addiction’s The Great Pumpkin Pie

Recipe:

 

Ingredients:

  • 1 can pumpkin puree (15oz)
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 ¼ cup dark brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ginger
  • ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground cloves
  • dash of ground pepper (⅛ teaspoon)
  • ¾ cup heavy cream
  • ¼ cup of milk

 

Directions:

 

  1. FOR OPTIONAL PIE CRUST LEAVES: Follow Martha Stewart’s pie crust, but do not roll out crust yet.
  2. Whisk the pumpkin, eggs, and brown sugar together. Make sure the mixture is combined before adding the salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cloves, pepper, cream, and milk. Whisk until everything is combined.
  3. OPTIONAL PIE CRUST LEAVES: Preheat the oven to 350°F. Roll out the crust into any shape. Using leaf pie cutters, cut out the leaves. Place the leaves onto a silicone baking mat or parchment paper. Bake for 10-15 minutes, or until golden brown.
  4. Preheat the oven to 375°F. Pour the pie filling into a pre-sprayed glass pie pan. Pour the filling so it is about ¾ full. Bake the pie for 50-55 minutes, it is okay if the center is still wobbly. Let cool and decorate with pie crust leaves. Store in fridge and enjoy!

 

Not Your Average Apple Cider Holes

Hi there fellow bakers! Today we have, dun dun dun, apple cider donut holes! Growing up in Massachusetts, apple picking is an autumn festivity. Lots of people spend their Sunday afternoons going to fall fairs, pumpkin patches, and of course picking apples! After spending all this time reaching for the top apple on the tree, what should I do with all of my delicous findings, I thought to myself. There are soooo many different apple recipes. From apple pies, to strudels, to applesauce, there are lots of possibilities!

Last year, while apple and pumpkin picking, my friend and I went to the concession stand and got apple cider donuts. When we tasted the moist, soft treats, we loved them, but thought about how much better they would be if we made them at home! The next week, the same friend and I made those scrumptious donuts, but in bite-sized form and instantly, a tradition was formed! Now every year we make these, and each year they get better and better!

Make these muffins for a delicious, easy, perfectly flavored snack! They pair perfectly with a tall glass of apple cider, or simply on their own! Hope you enjoy:)

This recipe is adapted from Sally’s Baking Addiction’s Spiced Apple Cider Donut Holes, and makes about 72 mini muffins.

Ingredients:

Donuts:

  • 1 cup apple cider
  • 2 cups flour
  • ¾ teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • ½ cup light brown sugar
  • ½ granulated sugar
  • ½ cup buttermilk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Topping:

  • ½ cup sugar
  • ¾ teaspoon cinnamon
  • 3 tablespoons butter, melted

Directions:

  1. In a medium-sized pot, simmer the apple cider until it is reduced to ½-¾ cup. This will take about 20 minutes.
  2. In the meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350°F. Spray a mini muffin pan with a non-stick cooking spray. Set aside.
  3. Whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves, and salt together in your largest bowl. Set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk the egg, melted butter, brown sugar, and sugar together until combined. Whisk in the buttermilk, vanilla, and ½ of the apple cider reduction.
  4. With a rubber spatula, lightly indent the dry mixture into the sides. Pour the wet mixture into the center, and combine. Gently mix together until just combined, and very few lumps remain. DO NOT OVER MIX!
  5. Pour the batter* into the muffin pans until ¾ full. Bake the muffins for 10 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.
  6. Combine the sugar and cinnamon to make cinnamon-sugar. Lightly brush the butter onto the muffins and dip them into the cinnamon-sugar. Serve that day, or cover tightly for up to three days! Yum!

*Spray the spoon with non-stick cooking spray before pouring the butter. It will keep the batter from sticking to the spoon!