Cookies for a Snowy Day

Over Christmas I made about 8 batches of different kinds of cookies, and this recipe was the favorite of one of my grandson's.  He called them Snickerdoodles, but I found out these are not actual Snickerdoodles.  More about that in another blog. I found this recipe from  Heather Cristo's Blog

Milk Chocolate, Toffee and Smoked Almond Cookies


1 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
2 1/4 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt (I omitted this because the almonds were salty.)
1/2 cup salted roasted smoked almonds, chopped
10 ounce bag milk chocolate chips (I used a 12 ounce bag of semi-sweet chips.)
8 ounce bag of toffee pieces


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Prepare a sheet pan with parchment or silpats.
In the bowl of a standing mixer, cream together the butter and the sugar.
Add the eggs and the vanilla and mix well.
In a separate bow, combine the flour, baking soda and salt.
Add the dry ingredients to the bowl and combine well.
Add the almonds, chocolate chips, and toffee and combine well.
Scoop cookie dough onto the prepared sheet pans and bake at 35 for 8-10 minutes.
Remove from the heat and let the cookies cool on a rack.

Preparation time:  10 minutes

Cooking time:  12 minutes in my oven. 

Linda Watson's Orange Broccoli Salad

Broccoli, Orange Bowl (Photo by Linda Watson, Cook for Good)
I follow Linda Watson's Cook for Good and recently she posted a recipe for broccoli that I made as a side dish for dinner the other night.   Check out the recipe here

I cooked the broccoli florets in the microwave briefly so that they remained bright green but weren't raw.

I diced candied orange slices to add to the broccoli.

To the orange juice and cornstarch I added slices of green onions to make a dressing to pour over the broccoli.

I didn't have any fresh or candied ginger so I added a bit of ground ginger to the dressing. 

Just before serving I added the cashew nuts.

This can be served chilled (as I did for the dinner) as a side dish or a salad, or it can be served warm over quinoa or rice.

I heated the leftover broccoli and served over Trader Joe's rice medley.   This dish is great served either way.

Another one of Linda Watson's recipes that are tasty and healthful. 

A Favorite Appetizer

Celery stalks stuffed with blue cheese, mascarpone, and apples. 

The News and Observer recently published its top 16 recipes from their weekly The Recipe that has been featured for the last two years.  It was a surprise that the second  most popular recipe was Celery Stalks Stuffed with Blue Cheese and Apples.  Check out the recipe here.

Since I am having guests for dinner tomorrow night, I decided to go ahead and make these as an appetizer and have that finished.  I must say they are quite tasty---especially if blue cheese is a favorite of yours as it is mine.
Celery stalks cut into thirds and leaves saved for garnish.  
Half of a Granny Smith  apples diced.
Blue cheese, mascarpone and diced apples mixed together.  
Celery stalks stuffed and garnished with leaves.  Ready to serve in my pretty new Moroccan dish, a gift from Claire.*
So the appetizers are ready, but the rest of the meal must be prepared just before we eat---at least the filet mignon must. But the groceries are bought and my menu is in place so all should be good.

 *Claire traveled to Morocco for a weekend while she was in Copenhagen during her semester abroad.