Orange Buttermilk Sugar Cookies

December 23, 2013

I know. This time of year is all about cookie flavors like pumpkin spice, gingerbread, and peppermint but I need you to put away those crunched up candy canes, that bottle of light molasses and the ground ginger and cloves and grab yourself an orange. One humble orange. Here. I have a full bowl of them. Take one. Go ahead. Don’t be shy.

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With one lone orb of orange you’re about to make an Orange Sugar Cookie that’s so citrusy, so bright, and so sweet that a single taste you’re going to forget all the spicy, dark flavors of winter. Gingerbread what? Pumpkin Spice who?

The only other special ingredient you need is some powdered buttermilk which is going to slightly mellow the tart taste of the orange and convince you that you’re actually eating the best orange creamsicle of your life.

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What elevates this Orange Sugar Cookie to some higher plane of cookie heaven is that instead of just using the zest or the juice of the orange we’re going to add in the WHOLE orange. Yep. All of it. The peel, the pith, the seeds, the meat. The whole thing. And here’s how…

Take the whole unpeeled orange and drop it into a pot of boiling water and  boil until you can easily run a knife into the center of the orange. An average orange will take between 45-60 minutes. Boiling the orange releases the bitter oils from out of the peel and pith while leaving in the flavor and also softens the skin so you don’t end up with tough little bits in the cookie.

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Once the boiled orange is cool enough to handle chop it into chunks.

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Drop the chunks into a food processor and blitz the fruit into a puree.

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Give the puree a taste. It should still be a little bitter but not to worry because it’s going to add the perfect bite of tartness when mixed into the dough. Now that your boiled orange puree is ready to go, it’s time to make up your first but not last batch of Orange Buttermilk Sugar Cookies.

But hold the presses! Or the standing mixer if you will because we need to talk about flour and with this recipe comes the perfect time to do so. Recently a couple of you have tried my flavors and left me a comment that while the flavor was good the cookie dough was so dry and crumbly it made it difficult to roll and cut. If this is happening to you then the obvious problem is related to the ratio of wet ingredients to dry ingredients and I suspect there are two potential sources for why your dough might end up being crumbly.

THE EGGS

I now use only large cage-free eggs. Check to be sure you’re using large eggs rather than small because the difference in liquid between egg sizes can make a significant difference to the cookie dough texture.

THE FLOUR

When measuring my flour I first fluff the container of flour with a large spoon and then fill my measuring cup repeatedly with spoonfuls of flour.  If you sift your flour into the measuring cup you’re going to need to increase the amount of flour I give in each recipe and if you dip the measuring cup directly into the flour bin you’re going to want to decrease the amount of flour in the recipe. My dough always turns out pliable without being either tacky or crumbly. I suspect if you follow my recipes exactly and are getting a crumbly dough it’s because you fill your measuring cup more densely with flour.

And on one final note, in recipes where I’ve  increased the flour to compensate for added wet ingredients as I have with this one, you’ll find the cookies have a floury taste directly out of the oven but give them a few hours to overnight for the cookies to rest and you’ll end up with the moist and delicious cookie you were counting on. Yet another opportunity in life to practice patience!

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Orange Buttermilk Sugar Cookies

Ingredients:
1 cup butter
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon orange emulsion (optional)
*1/2 cup boiled orange puree
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 cup buttermilk powder
5  – 5 1/2 cups flour

Directions:

…..Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

  1. Boil one whole orange in a pot of water for about 60 minutes or until you can easily push a knife into the center. Remove the orange from the water and when it has cooled enough to handle, chop into chunks and then puree in a food processor. Set aside.
  2. Combine flour, baking powder, salt, and powdered buttermilk. Set aside.
  3. Cream the butter and sugar.
  4. Add in the eggs and beat for 30-45 seconds.
  5. Add in the vanilla extract (and orange emulsion, optional) beating until well-blended.
  6. Add in the orange puree.
  7. Add in the dry ingredients one cup at a time until the dough is fully incorporated.
  8. Roll out the dough on a lightly-floured surface to the desired thickness. Place the cut cookies onto a parchment-lined cookie sheet and bake on the center rack of the oven for 8-12 minutes. Baking time will be determined by the thickness and overall dimension of cookies.
  9. Remove cookies from the oven and allow to cool on baking sheet before moving to cooling rack.

* The whole orange can be boiled up to two days in advance and stored in the refrigerator until ready to use and while I haven’t tried it myself, this time of year it might be fun to replace the orange with several of the super sweet Satsumas mandarin oranges so popular this time of year.

Maple Bacon Pancake Cookies (Minus the Pancakes)

November 20, 2013

Let’s play a game of photo association.
When most people see this . . .

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 They think breakfast.
Eggs. Bacon. Pancakes. Maple Syrup.
Okay, I’ve give you that breakfast is a safe answer.

But now let’s change the photo up a bit . . .

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And add in butter, flour, white and brown sugar, and vanilla extract.
Now what word comes to mind?

Oh no, you didn’t Anita!
Oh yes. I did!

And here’s how it happened.

About a month ago I made my first batch of sugar cookies with real bacon and pure maple syrup.  While the flavor of maple didn’t shine through the cookies were still basically awesome. Savory and sweet, tender and crisp. What’s not to love about that? And I kept meaning to post the recipe but then one day  I noticed a box of pancake mix at the store and thought, “Hold the press! We’ve got some more research to do!” So last week I made the Maple Bacon cookies again but this time I replaced the maple syrup with maple flavoring and a cup of the flour with a cup of pancake mix. As it turned out the maple flavor balanced perfectly with the bacon but the pancake mix  added essentially nothing to the cookie. It was a nice idea though, don’t you think? So I scratched the pancake mix and made the Maple Bacon cookies one final time. This time I made a few fundamental changes. First, I omitted the salt called for in my regular cookies since the cured bacon added more than enough, but not too much salt, and along with the maple flavoring I added back in the vanilla extract I’d omitted with batches one and two and this time I made a wonderful discovery. The cookies didn’t need pancake mix after all because they already tasted like bacon, maple syrup, and pancakes for the simple reason that pancake mix is part flour, sugar, and vanilla flavoring.

And that’s what led us to Maple Bacon Pancake Cookies, minus the pancakes.

So let’s get to the recipe by beginning with the star of the show.

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 BACON!!!
And as a point of personal information that is of no interest to anyone but myself and my primary care physician, while I love bacon enough to have a shirt that declares my fond devotion, I don’t remember when the last time was that I actually ate bacon primarily because it’s too fatty and too salty and one slice is never enough so it’s just better to not get me started. There are about 325 different foods I could say the same thing about. Including cookies. Oh the irony.

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But back to the cookies. Begin by cooking up 12 slices of bacon until they’re brown and crisp. You don’t want any blubbery chewy bits but crisp it all up and then drain on paper towels to soak up as much fat as possible. I found that by cooking my bacon between layers of paper towels in the microwave got me the results I was wanted.

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Chop up the 10 remaining slices of bacon. The thinner the cookie the smaller the bits.
No additional comment is necessary about the 2 slices of bacon that went missing between the cooking and the chopping.

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Add the chopped up bacon to your dry ingredients and then mix thoroughly so the bacon will be evening distributed through the dough.

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Look. Cookie dough. Bacon. Dark colored with brown sugar and maple flavoring.
My heart is singing.

Before I roll out the recipe, not that there’s any great mystery beyond “add bacon and maple flavoring”, I wanted to mention a couple asides at no extra cost to you.

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When cutting out cookies with little hard bits and bobs in the dough, press down firmly on the cutter and then shimmy the cutter gently back and forth from side to side on the board. This will help to not only give you a clean cut of the dough but will either cut through the hard bits or press them back into the dough leaving you with a clean cut line.

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If there are still hard bits remaining around the edges of your cookie, don’t pull them out as this will leave you with a messy edge and little empty spaces in your cookie dough that will make the cookie structure less stable and more susceptible to burning in the oven or breaking later on down the road.

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Instead, using a sharp paring knife or an exacto blade cut the excess bit from the cookie. Keeping the cookie in the cutter while you do this sugary surgical procedure will protect the cookie shape and give you a firm edge to guide the blade.

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I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, my favorite tools for cleaning up the edges of a cookie are an exacto blade and a boo-boo stick to be used prior to baking and a microplane or zester for sanding the edges of the cookie after it’s been baked and cooled. These are three of my gotta-haves. Along with toothpicks. Toothpicks are to cookie decorators like air is to humans. Okay, so we need air too but you get my point.

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So now I have several stacks of cookies with tidy clean edges but because the bacon requires they be stored in the refrigerator I need to come up with a way to decorate them quickly.

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And so I flooded the cookies with pink glaze and while the icing was setting up, I rolled out a thin layer of Choco-Pan and cut out some flower shapes using a set of flower fondant plungers.

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Choco-Pan is a brand name for chocolate modeling clay or chocolate fondant, not to be confused with the sugar-based fondant that’s wrapped around wedding cakes and makes it look pretty right until the moment when everyone peels it off their slice of cake into a sloppy pile of sugar goo on their desert plate. Choco-Pan on the other hand is yummy and while it comes in a wide range of colors I only keep a supply of the brown chocolate and the white chocolate since the white can easily be colored with coloring gels. I’ll occasionally buy a small container of the black for Halloween since coloring it with black gel on my own ends up changing the flavor…and not in a good way.

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By the time all my modeling chocolate flowers were punched out the icing had set firm enough to gently place the flowers onto the surface.

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If you don’t own any fondant plungers you can use mini cookie cutters. If you don’t own any mini cutters you can roll out six tiny balls. Place five of the balls in a tiny circle, place the sixth ball in the center and lightly press them all. Bingo, you have a flower!

And if you don’t have any chocolate fondant lying around the house. . .

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Unwrap some Tootsie Rolls, put them into the microwave for a few seconds (6-8), and then shaping the warm candy into a ball use it as you would the Choco-Pan.

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The flavor of the dark chocolate Choco-Pan is exactly like that of Tootsie Rolls. The chocolate fondant and softened Tootsie Rolls are equal in ease of use but there are a couple differences to consider when decorating cookies with Tootsie Rolls.

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Tootsie clay is best used for cookies that aren’t going to be sealed in an airtight bag since the clay seems to absorb the moisture of the baked iced cookie and becomes tacky to the touch while the fondant will remain dry to the touch and hold it’s shape. Both are best used for flat designs rather than dimensional details and both need to be kept out of warmer temperatures.

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The more significant difference is in the texture. The chocolate fondant which is made to be eaten with baked goods breaks apart when chewed like a thin layer of fudge, while the Tootsie clay is stretchy and chewy which in my opinion makes for a rather weird mouth feel when combined with the cookie chew. But hey, maybe it’s just me.

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Maple Bacon Pancake Cookies

Ingredients:
1 cup butter
3/4 cup white sugar
3/4 cup light or dark brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla
1.5 teaspoons maple flavoring
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
4 1/2 cups flour
10-12 slices (approx. 3/4 cup) chopped crispy brown bacon

Directions:

…..Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

1. Cook the bacon until crisp and brown. Drain on paper towels. Chop into small pieces.
2. Combine flour, baking powder, and chopped bacon. Set aside.
3. Cream the butter and sugars.
4. Add in the eggs and beat for 30-45 seconds.
5. Add in the vanilla extract and maple flavoring beating until well-blended.
6. Add in the dry ingredients one cup at a time until the dough is fully incorporated.
7.  Roll out the dough on a lightly-floured surface to the desired thickness. Place the cut cookies onto a parchment-lined cookie sheet and bake on the center rack of the oven for 8-12 minutes. Baking time will be determined by the thickness and overall dimension of cookies.
8. Remove cookies from the oven and allow to cool on baking sheet before moving to cooling rack.

Storing Maple Bacon Pancake Cookies: Cookies may be left on the kitchen counter for 1-2 days but after that time store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator, removing 15-20 minutes before serving to allow time for them to warm to room temperature. While bacon is salt-cured and smoked, always be conservative when it comes to food safety. 

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White Chocolate Pistachio Cherry Cookies

October 17, 2013

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There’s a program in the U.K. called “Masterchef” which is nothing, absolutely nothing like the American version. The primary difference being that Masterchef UK is really good where as Masterchef US is really annoying. Oh, that’s not to say I don’t watch it but I do so knowing that like most of reality TV it’s as scripted, staged, and rehearsed as the Broadway performance of Les Mis. Everything about the US version is predictable. The contestants are character types from the kitchen klutz to the arrogant foodie to the ditsy southern belle, no offensive intended to my readers with southern belle leanings. On the Masterchef US version at least two contestants will hate each other and duke it out with saucepans every episode and you can bet your rolling pin that there will be a contestant who is competing to make their dead mother or father or cousin or mail carrier proud and with tears they’ll confess sensing their dead mother or father or cousin or mail carrier hovering close by while mincing onions. Oooooookay. And no matter whether it’s the first episode or the tenth, one of the contestants is going to say to an arm-crossed sneering Joe Bastianich, “I’m not ready to go home yet.” Boo-hoo.

I should have been a TV critic.

The difference with the UK version is everything. The contestants are real people, just ordinary amateur cooks who are more focused on doing their best each round than drawing bread knives and jousting with the other competitors. They demonstrate decency and appropriate manners toward the other contestants, complimenting each other’s skills and cheering their successes.  How very British of them. The very best part is that while competing on Masterchef UK the contestants are given ample opportunity to learn new skills by cooking along side professional chefs while working a lunch shift in the kitchen of local restaurants, and I’m happy to report that to date no spirits of dead loved ones have cheered any of the contestants on each time they crack an egg. The only show I enjoy more than Masterchef UK is The Great British Bake-Off which is the. best. baking. show. ever. Mary Berry, I love you.

Now that you’ve scratched a hole through the side of your head trying to figure out what this all has to do with White Chocolate Pistachio Cherry Cookies, I’ll tell you. In a word, nothing. I just had a rant I needed to purge before it soured my insides. Oh, and because in a recent episode while preparing a dessert one of the UK contestants mentioned something about the classic combination of white chocolate, pistachios and cherries, which I heard as “Anita, you should really think about making white chocolate, pistachio and cherry cookies.”  So I did.

Speaking of pistachios I could at this point turn off the lights, set up my slide projector and show you a reel of slides from a trip I took to Turkey back in the 1990′s with my parents and my sister for no other reason than  I remember walking along the ocean’s edge near some Turkish town eating warm pistachios from a greasy paper cone I’d bought from a vendor’s cart. But instead, how about we just converse for a minute about cleaning pistachios.

Before baking with pistachios it goes without saying, at least I hope it does, that you first need to remove them from the shell. You knew that, right? Whew. Imagine my relief. What you might not know is pistachios have a papery dry skin like peanuts that you’re going to want to remove along with the shells so that all you end up with is the brilliant green pistachio meat instead of little dry bits of nut skin and trust me, you don’t want dry bits of nut skin in your cookies because when you try to deny you ate any White Chocolate Pistachio Cherry Cookies people will see the nut skins caught in your teeth and know you are a liar. Remove the nut skins.

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To remove the skins, fill a bowl with the pistachios and then cover with boiling water and leave the nuts to soak for 2-3 minutes. Drain the water, place the nuts in the center of a dish towel, place another dish towel on top, and rub vigorously. Most of the skin will slip right off. The pistachios in my hand show how they look before and after their bath and rub-down.

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I really wanted the  pistachios and dried cherries to add a solid crunch and chew to the cookies and so I did a coarse chop of both and then rolled out my dough to a full 3/8 inch thickness which allowed for bigger chunks in the cookies without creating a bumpy cookie surface. With bigger chunks not only do the individual flavors come through more distinctly but look at those colors, will you? Would these be an awesome looking Christmas cookie dough or what?!

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Last year about this time my cookie cutter obsession leeched out into the world of cookie molds and House on the Hill makes some beautiful high quality molds. While they make a clear imprint on the surface of a smooth rolled cookie recipe, I use them more often with modeling chocolate and when I’m not using them on modeling chocolate I’m using them to decorate our home.

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But then again, our home decor also includes a flying pig (thank you Callye!) and Cookie Monster (thank you Kay!) which can either be interpreted as eclectic decor or a hoarder’s decor.  Oh, I thought I should mention, my birthday is December 15 and I don’t yet have the adorable pumpkin mold from House on the Hill. I’m not saying those two facts are related but if you see a connection then by all means let the spirit move you…Dana? Sis? :::tap tap tap::: Is this thing on?

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I was going to show you how I made the modeling clay tops but it seemed unnecessary given that no human being passes through childhood without at least once pressing a dime, a paper clip, or their dogs nose into a ball of Playdoh to see what happens. Just roll out your modeling chocolate on parchment paper, dust the mold with cornstarch (white modeling chocolate), cocoa (brown modeling chocolate) or magic pixie dust, press, lift, and cut around the design using a knife or cookie cutter. You can then just leave the relief pattern as is or lightly airbrush, paint, or luster dust with metallic colors to add an antique look or paint with coloring gel or edible markers. And finally, to adhere the chocolate relief to the top of the cookie, either place the chocolate mold directly onto a slightly warm cookie or brush the bottom side of the chocolate mold with any flavor extract (or vodka for you booze hounds) and press onto the cookie surface.

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But what I just told you to do . . . that’s not what I do and here’s why. To get the full imprint of the mold into the modeling chocolate you need to roll out a fairly thick layer of clay which for most people is too much sugary goodness for a bite of cookie, but if they remove the modeling chocolate completely then they end up with a naked cookie and a rolled sugar cookie weeps for a sugary blanket of something.

How did I solve this cookie crisis? Think fondant covered wedding cake. Same deal. What I do is flood the top of the cookie with a thin layer of glaze icing in white or a color that will accent the colors on the chocolate mold. Once the glaze has completely dried I lightly press the chocolate mold on top. Nothing is needed to adhere the mold to the cookie since there’s just enough tackiness between the chocolate and the glaze to bond them together. Now when someone goes to eat a cookie, they have the option of peeling off the chocolate mold and still having a complete and perfect cookie. Voilà!
By the way, if you don’t have any cookie molds you can roll out a thin layer of modeling chocolate and add quick designs using texture impression mats or poly clear stamps. I don’t know…maybe I will do a modeling chocolate post someday but for now here’s a recipe for White Chocolate Pistachios Cherry Cookies.

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White Chocolate Pistachio Cherry Cookies

Ingredients:
1 cup butter
1.5 cups white sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extra
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
4 1/2 cups flour
1 cup ground white chocolate
1/2 cup chopped pistachios
1/2 cup chopped sweetened dried cherries

Directions:

…..Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

1. Combine flour, baking powder, salt, and finely ground white chocolate. Set aside.
2. Cream the butter and sugar.
3. Add in the eggs and beat for 30-45 seconds.
4. Add in the vanilla extract beating until well-blended.
5. Add in the dry ingredients one cup at a time until the dough is fully incorporated.
6. Stir in the chopped pistachios and cherries.
7.  Roll out the dough on a lightly-floured surface to the desired thickness. Place the cut cookies onto a parchment-lined cookie sheet and bake on the center rack of the oven for 8-12 minutes. Baking time will be determined by the thickness and overall dimension of cookies.
7. Remove cookies from the oven and allow to cool on baking sheet before moving to cooling rack.

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One last thing. If you’re thinking of adding the pistachios and dried cherries to chocolate cookie dough, reconsider. I tried that first but the flavor of the pistachios and cherries were all but lost in the chocolate. Plus, while you could see the green of the pistachios the red of the cherries didn’t come through. No extra charge for that final tidbit.

 

Oh My, It’s Cookie Pie!

October 3, 2013

Remember my post a couple weeks ago where I revealed the magical healing powers of Cookie Butter?  And if you don’t believe me the next time you stub your toe, split a fingernail, or get a paper cut, grab a spoon and a jar of cookie butter and just try and tell me it doesn’t make you feel better. I dare you.

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And do you remember how I suggested you just might want to mix cookie butter with cream cheese for a sweet spread for fruit and bread
or add it to whipped topping for a fluffy sweet treat with simple chocolate or vanilla wafer cookies
or eat it straight out of the jar with pretzels, a spoon, or your fingers?

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So you read the cookie butter post and then you went on with your lives. Well, not me. I was trapped alone in the past with my fantasies of cookie butter in all it’s glorious potentiality. Which leads me to this historic moment in our lives. The moment when the world as we once knew it changed with the birth of the . . . Cookie Pie!
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That’s right! A cream pie that’s cookie from bottom to top, beginning with a no-bake cookie crust coated with a layer of pure cookie butter, topped with a luscious filling of whipped topping, cream cheese and cookie butter, and then decorated all around the edges with mini cookies. Let’s run through that one more time.

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If you want the very best chocolate cookie recipe ever then pop over to LilaLoa’s The End-All for Cho… oh forget it. If you’ve missed the other 385 times I’ve linked to the best chocolate cookie recipe ever then you’re just going to miss it again so go buy a bag of Oreos already. As far as a great pumpkin spice cookie recipe, well gosh and golly, you could always give mine a try and I’ll let you be the judge as to where it fits on the scale of greatness.

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Isn’t that a pretty pie? Sometimes I just stare at the photo and then close my eyes and imagine the creamy, the spicy, the sweet, the crunchy, while doing everything in my power to forget the calories. They do not exist. They do not exist. They do not exist.

And now close your eyes and imagine all the possibilities. Gingersnap crust with a lemon cookie butter filling. Chocolate cookie crust with a chocolate peppermint cookie butter filling speckled with broke bits of peppermint candy. Lime cookie crust with toasted coconut cookie butter filling. Someone stop me. Oh, and in the summer how about replacing the whipped topping and cream cheese with softened vanilla ice cream swirled with ButterFinger Cookie Butter in a peanut butter cookie crust for a yummy frozen ice cream pie.

These are just off the top of my head people. The possibilities are endless for a fast and easy creamy cookie pie! If this doesn’t inspire you to save your cookie crumb scraps in the freezer, nothing will. You are beyond hope. But I still love you.

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The full pie in your eye and . . .

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The killer close-up shot.

Gratitude Cookie Gave-Away

October 2, 2013

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Nope, it’s not a mistake. I’m holding a gave-away, not give-away but more about that in a minute or three.

This is a petit post, a mini recap from the recent Walk to Defeat ALS event in Vancouver Washington. You know . . .  the walk I kept talking about and asking, cajoling, whining, pleading, and inviting any and all to sponsor my participation with a donation. Yep, that one.

For the past three years I’ve walked in support of and then in memory of Randy but the bigger reason I walk and my family walks is for people like these . . . good people, funny people, gentle people, and pretty dang holy people who are living today with ALS. Every day brings another challenge when you’re living with ALS but it also brings joy and friendship, laughter and love, and when we walk and roll together we don’t move together in grief and despair. We walk in hope for a better day when ALS is just a faded memory and we walk in gratitude for the lives of those we’ve lost and the lives of those we continue to have among us.  These beautiful faces are just four of the 30,000 people in the United States living today with ALS and only four of the 400,000 worldwide.

My family walks for them. I bake for them.

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32 family members walked in neon green this year as Team Ran’s Fans and offering up a completely non-bias observation I feel comfortable saying they’re a mighty fine-looking team. The top left is my niece Jennifer with husband John and adorable 3 year old going on 15 year old Rosie. To the right is Sam and Tristan with their handsome little guy Wyatt. Underneath them is my niece Tracey with husband Bryce, brilliant big brother Dylan, always entertaining Brady, and the twins Landyn and Payton. And the gang of gals from right to left is me, my fairly incredible sister Barb, Randy’s wife and my SIL DeeAnn, my brother Carl’s wife and it stands to reason also my SIL Phyllis, and DeeAnn’s sister Carolyn.
I thought this would all be pertinent information for those of you charting my family genealogy.

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The Pacific Northwest didn’t fail in providing liquid sunshine for all those walking and rolling over the 3 mile route and we’re not talking a light drizzle or intermittent showers but a generous dose of pouring down rain. And oh, the guy with the tropical tan dressed in sandals and shorts while carrying an umbrella in the rain? Yep, we’re related. He’s my brother Carl. Shorts and sandals with a forecast calling for 90% chance of rain . . . and no, I don’t have a point, I just think it needs to be noted.

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Along with walking, I also served as bagel-slicer, wing-wearer, and trumpet-player.
And you thought I just baked cookies.

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Now wait . . . I think I have my facts wrong. When I mentioned that 32 members of my family walked as Team Ran’s Fans, that was a bit misleading because those of us walking in wet sneakers were only a small part of Team Ran’s Fans. The rest of our team included the dozens of individuals who donated to support our walk, including 65 of you who contributed to the walk.

And so to . . .

Christine S
Jamie C
Colony C
Sharon G
Tracy H
Vicki T
Alison B
Jill W
Cindy R
Tami M
Karan S
RuthAnn W
Tracy L
Krista H
Jacinda H
Melissa L
Sheree D
DeeAnn C
Susan K
Heather H
Rebecca W
Tiffany S
Anne Y
Dana P
Betty Jo M
Neha D
Kathy M
Jung P
Linda J
Joan S
Elizabeth A
Nicole S
Jill W
Sandra M
Dean H
Jenny P
Natalie P
Barbara B
Lorraine R
Kimberly M
Deborah D
Patricia Z
Laurie A
Bev P
Cindy B
Amy R
Barb D
Christine S
Lisa D
Rebecca W
Maria W
Kelcy W
Barbara B
Lisa T
Elizabeth W
Karen A
Kari A
Susan S
Klarissa O
Cristin S
Nicole K
Randi H
Katherine W
and
Michelle J

I want to offer up one ginormous . . .

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And this is where the Gratitude Cookie Gave-Away comes in because even before I had the chance to tell you about it, it had already happened which makes it a gave-away and not a give-away.  No need to enter, no chance to win. Over and done!

In a perfect world of my creation I would have baked cookies for all 65 who donated to support me in the ALS Walk  but since this is an imperfect world, as evidenced by corrupt politicians, poverty, and the blatant lie of “one size fits all”, I settled instead to have a drawing so that at least two of you could enjoy a box o’ cookies.  The other 63 donors will just have to relish the pleasure of all the calories they avoided in not winning. Enough calories to excuse you from going to the gym for at least 4-5 days. No need to thank me, really. The first name I drew won an assortment of Sweet Hope Cookies including Cinnamon Roll, Pumpkin Spice, Chocolate Java and Cinnamon Chocolate. In addition to the cookies, the second name I drew also won a 10 dollar Starbucks gift card and a bag of Candy Corn M&M’s. Okay, so maybe my gifts are a little more humble than a shiny candy apple  7-quart standing mixer or a 2014 model sports car but then I never claimed to be Pioneer Woman or Oprah, now did I?

Anywho, the first name I drew for the box o’ cookies was

Sandra M! Congrats Sandy!

And the second name I pulled from the bowl for the box o’ cookies with a Starbucks chaser and candy treat was

Colony C! And congrats to you Colony!

As a fun aside, I went to high school with one of the winners and the other is someone I don’t know. Once again I share information that matters to no one. Just another example of my frequent compulsion to over share.

But again, a sincere thank you to those who donated toward the Walk to Defeat ALS and an equal thanks to those who though unable to make a donation this year have continued to support and encourage me along the way throughout this little venture known as Sweet Hope Cookies. You’re all rock stars in my book!