Sunday, November 16, 2008

Operation Baking GALS Round 4 --Team Meet Me in the Kitchen-Lt. Hopper Round-up

I found out that one of my friend's husbands was shipping out to Iraq, for the second time, and that his birthday was in November, so I decided to host the 4th round of Operation Baking GALS. Note- if you haven't checked out the new site, go and see it! I first met the Hopper's back in 2000 when I moved to Athens, Georgia. They only had 1 child then, (now they have 5) but, we hit it off and spent alot of time together. Lia helped me graduate from college by babysitting my newborn, even though she had 2 kids of her own and was pregnant. The payment was simply that we took them out to dinner a couple times a month. Pretty nice arrangement.
Carl re-enlisted in the army and the Hopper's ended up moving. We have kept in touch, mostly due to Lia being good at that sort of thing, and they are now in Alaska.
It is fun to be able to get this sort of event organized because there are so many people who are willing to share their time, talents, and baked goods, to get a homemade package out to our troops. Here is a round-up of what Carl will be receiving in the mail! Maybe he will receive one of the packages on his birthday-Nov. 24th. Thank you so much to my team for being willing to be a part of this great service- I appreciate your time, effort, and money spent. Thank you!!! Round 5 is going to be just in time for Christmas, so give of yourself and sign up for a team.

Pamela of Cookies with Boys sent those yummy Chocolate Coconut Oatmeal Cookies, Triple Play Peanut Butter Cookies, and Dorie Greenspan's Chewy Chunky Blondies. Read her POST to find out more about these and to get the recipes. Note- Carl already received this package already and was so appreciative- Thanks, Pamela- for getting your package out so early!
Shelby over at The Life and Loves of Grumpy's Honeybunch sent this Nutella Biscotti and Peanut Butter Cookies. I jokingly told her she should send the Biscotti to me instead- doesn't it look great? Go the her POST to get the full story and recipes!
Dona England, who informed me that she was not a blogger, but a great cookie baker, sent Pat's Chocolate Chip Bars ( pictured above, recipe below) and Peanut Candy Bar Squares that she found over at Bake or Break. Yummy!

Kelly over at Baking with the Boys sent Chocolate Coma Cookies, Mini Apple Cinnamon Muffins, and Oatmeal Scotchies. Great variety!

Audrey, (my older sister), of Bella&Piekna sent Mini Chocolate Chippers and Oatmeal Scotchies. thanks Aud!
UPDATE- Beth Rizzo sent Peanut Butter Chocolate Chunk Cookies and Field&Stream and Outdoor Life magazines! Thanks, Beth!
I made Dorie's World Peace Cookies, below, and Prudy's Peanut Butter Cookies with Reese's Pieces- my son asked who made the World Peace Cookie recipe and I told him Dorie. He wanted me to pass on that those cookies got a double thumbs up!

Pat’s Chocolate Chip Bars (15×10 inch pan)
8 oz butter (regular)
1 1/4 cup of white sugar
1 cup of brown sugar, packed
4 large eggs
1 tablespoon of pure vanilla
3 1/2 cups all purpose flour (Spoon and level)
1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt (optional)
2 (12 oz) packages of semi-sweet chocolate chips (don’t cut back)
2 cups chopped pecans (optional)
Cream the butter and sugars, beat in the eggs and vanilla.. Combine the dry ingredients and blend in. Add chips and nuts. Spread in a greased 15x 10 inch baking pan. Bake at 350′ for 15-20 minutes. Cool and cut into bars.
Peanut Butter Cookies with Reese's Pieces from Prudence Pennywise
(from Joy of Cooking)
1 and 1/2 cups flour (Prudy used half whole wheat)
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/3 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 large egg
1 cup peanut butter
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup miniature Reese's Pieces Baking Bits
Preheat oven to 375. In a small bowl, combine flour and soda. In a large bowl, beat butter and sugar until creamy. Add the egg, peanut butter, and vanilla, stirring until well combined. Mix in the flour mixture. Add the Reese's pieces. Form into 1 inch balls and place on cookie sheets. Bake for 10-12 minutes

World Peace/Korova Cookies from Paris Sweets and Baking: from my home to yours-Dorie Greenspan
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 stick plus 3 tablespoons (11 tablespoons) unsalted butter, at room temperature
2/3 cup (packed) light brown sugar
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon fleur de sel or 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
5 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped into chips, or a generous 3/4 cup store-bought mini chocolate chips
Makes about 36 cookies
Sift the flour, cocoa and baking soda together.Working with a stand mixer, preferably fitted with a paddle attachment, or with a hand mixer in a large bowl, beat the butter on medium speed until soft and creamy. Add both sugars, the salt and vanilla extract and beat for 2 minutes more.Turn off the mixer. Pour in the flour, drape a kitchen towel over the stand mixer to protect yourself and your kitchen from flying flour and pulse the mixer at low speed about 5 times, a second or two each time. Take a peek — if there is still a lot of flour on the surface of the dough, pulse a couple of times more; if not, remove the towel. Continuing at low speed, mix for about 30 seconds more, just until the flour disappears into the dough — for the best texture, work the dough as little as possible once the flour is added, and don’t be concerned if the dough looks a little crumbly. Toss in the chocolate pieces and mix only to incorporate.Turn the dough out onto a work surface, gather it together and divide it in half. Working with one half at a time, shape the dough into logs that are 1 1/2 inches in diameter. Wrap the logs in plastic wrap and refrigerate them for at least 3 hours. (The dough can be refrigerated for up to 3 days or frozen for up to 2 months. If you’ve frozen the dough, you needn’t defrost it before baking — just slice the logs into cookies and bake the cookies 1 minute longer.)
GETTING READY TO BAKE: Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment or silicone mats. Working with a sharp thin knife, slice the logs into rounds that are 1/2 inch thick. (The rounds are likely to crack as you’re cutting them — don’t be concerned, just squeeze the bits back onto each cookie.) Arrange the rounds on the baking sheets, leaving about 1 inch between them. Bake the cookies one sheet at a time for 12 minutes — they won’t look done, nor will they be firm, but that’s just the way they should be. Transfer the baking sheet to a cooling rack and let the cookies rest until they are only just warm, at which point you can serve them or let them reach room temperature.
SERVING: The cookies can be eaten when they are warm or at room temperature — I prefer them at room temperature, when the textural difference between the crumbly cookie and the chocolate bits is greatest — and are best suited to cold milk or hot coffee.
STORING: Packed airtight, cookies will keep at room temperature for up to 3 days they can be frozen for up to 2 months
Tomorrow- Cooking Light Night- Cornflake Crusted Halibut, Toasted Millet and Vegetable Confetti Salad, and Orange Mini Bundt Cakes


Carlia said...

Mary Ann and all the other baking gals, thank you thank you thank you for dedicating this round of the OBGs to Carl. He LOVES treats - and he definitely needs something to sweeten up his time over there in the sand pit! I know he will be grinning from ear to ear with every package!!!

Teresa Jordan said...

I love your blog! Can't wait to try out those nutella muffins.

Jenny said...

Wow, Love your new look! I've been MIA lately. Another great post!! It all looks beautiful!

Amy said...

Thank you so much (to everyone) for baking the goodies for Lt. Hopper. We know the Hopper family(we lived in North Pole with them) and they are an awesome family. Carl definately deserves this. Lia could probably use some treats too while her 2nd half is away for a year. (Good idea! I'll send her some goodies myself.)

I followed a link from Lia's blog to yours and have been enjoying seeing all the great things you make! It's a great blog!

Steph said...

Wow, it looks like a nice assortment of treats! Thanks for posting Pat's chocolate chip bars. I've been searching for a bar recipe, but still can't decide which to choose!

Mary Ann said...

Lia- it was an honor. I hope Carl enjoys the goodies!

Teresa-Thanks for coming by!

Jenny- I love the new blog look as well. Thanks for commenting!

Earle Family- Thank you so much for commenting. Great idea to send Lia some goodies as well! I am sure her kids would enjoy it too!

Steph- Since she isn't a blogger I thought it was only fair to post the bar recipe. Hope it turns out. I might try it for the next round of baking GALS!

The Blonde Duck said...

That's so wonderful that you're involved in Operation Baking Gals. I'm thinking about joining. I can't wait for the Halibut!

Maris said...

Each of these cookies looks even better than the previous one!