Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

Don’t get turned off by hearing oatmeal. These are not at all like the oatmeal cookies you have tried before. I do enjoy oatmeal cookies, but usually with M&Ms in them. I wanted to have something chocolaty for when my friend visited me recently, so I found this recipe through a Cook’s Country magazine. I changed it a bit, so I am submitting my version below.

These cookies taste chocolaty first with a crisp start, and then become chewy and even more rich tasting. The chewiness is not super chewy, but more soft inside. The melted chocolate really works well for this. The recipe calls for milk chocolate for that part, which I used, but I used the Theo Classic Milk Chocolate bar which has a higher cacao percentage than many other milk chocolate bars. Basically, use whatever chocolate tastes good for you, but not the darkest stuff you have around.

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Milk Chocolate Ice Cream with Peanut Butter Swirl

This is the finale for my ice cream week on here.

Don’t forget to check out: Monday’s post on vanilla ice cream and Wednesday’s post on Mango Sorbet.

My all-time favorite ice cream is Turkey Hill’s Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup. Now, I am not talking chocolate ice cream with some peanut butter flavoring, or using peanut butter cups. I am talking nice milk chocolate ice cream with swirls of peanut butter going through. I have never seen a recipe for it, but you better believe that I have tried faking my way with it before! You see, occasionally stores would stop carrying it, or I do silly things like move away from the mid-Atlantic region where it is regularly available. In college, before I knew that Wawa also made a variety that was just as good (thanks to my close friend/old roommate Sarah!), I would take chocolate ice cream, melt it slightly, then scoop peanut butter into it and swirl it around. It worked okay, but it just wasn’t the same.

Messy, yummy, and chocolaty!

I used The Perfect Scoop by David Lebovitz to come up with my own version that I like quite a bit. If you are a peanut butter and chocolate fan, you should definitely give it a go, even if you’ve never been lucky enough to have the Turkey Hill version.

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Mango Sorbet

Picking up from Monday’s post on vanilla ice cream, I have a mango sorbet for part 2 of ice cream week. This is a super easy recipe, and it makes you realize that buying the Haagen Dazs mango sorbet can be a task for the past. This recipe is cheaper, and I think it tastes better, too (especially after reading the ingredients for theirs which includes pumpkin juice and carrot juice??).

It certainly tastes good on its own, but also as part of a trio of Strawberry Lemonade Sorbet and Sparkling Wine Blackberry Sorbet.

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Vanilla Ice Cream (with brownie chunks)

Since last week I had veggie week, I decided to make this week ice cream/sorbet week in honor of my husband’s birthday on Thursday. My ice cream maker has been getting so much use this summer, especially with all of the ice cream books I keep picking up. All of the recipes this week come from The Perfect Scoop by David Lebovitz. This first one is his basic vanilla ice cream. He has two versions, one is egg-less, and then there is this one, which is custard-style. I like having the eggs for certain basic flavors because I think it helps create a nice strong base. Besides, my husband loves eggs.

His method is a little different than what I’m used to with ice cream because instead of the basic bowl in an ice bath, he puts some of the cream in the bowl. I decided to try it and see how it worked. It did not seem to be any different in taste or ease, and it does not use any extra bowls, so I am calling it a draw. For his recipes I may just keep doing it because it worked fine, but for other ice cream recipes I might stick to my old method, like I did here.

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Spinach Hilda

Post 3 of 3 during veggie week. Check out the glazed roasted carrots and crunchy roasted tomatoes if you missed them earlier this week.

This recipe comes to us from my great-grandmother whom I never met, but she was the woman my mom learned most of her cooking from, as well as other life skills. Who knows how things would have turned out if she had not been the one who basically raised my mom? She was a double amputee, which during anytime, but especially that time, meant that getting around was really hard. My mom sometimes did some shopping for her, but the family members on that side were all really big. My mom at 5’6″ was considered a runt. I am not sure how tall my great-grandmother was standing, but I do know that she wore size 11 shoes with a AAAAA width (super narrow). I have continued the line of long feet (although not as long as hers!) with really narrow feet. I also know that her bra size was something quite remarkable and my mom had to go to a special store for her…! There were lots of funny stories that seemed to come from my great-grandmother and I wish I had been able to meet her, but she passed away before I was born.

So, when I first asked my mom for this spinach recipe that I grew up loving, we had to give it a name, and so we named it after my great-grandmother. This is one of those dishes that helps non-spinach lovers become more of a fan. It is also one of those dishes that you can easily make with what you have on hand.

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Crunchy Roasted Tomatoes

Continuing from Monday’s post on glazed roasted carrots, this is another post from the same dinner party. Tomatoes are another yummy way to enjoy summer. For this recipe, you can use any style of tomatoes, but I recommend a medium to large-sized kind that will hold up better when roasting. They really shrink a bunch in the oven!

My mom used to throw tomatoes in when she was roasting main courses like chicken. I always liked how sweet they got, and this is such a simple recipe that comes from a book by Sonia Stevenson called “Roasting”. It is also quite forgiving because I kept forgetting I was cooking the bread crumbs over and over, and yet they still did ok!

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Glazed Roasted Carrots

3 straight posts of veggies? No way! Well, that’s what we have for this week. Starting with today’s entry of roasted carrots!

My friend Lisa and I were holding another dinner party. We wanted to welcome summer with lots of colors, so we purposefully chose dishes that we knew would reflect a full rainbow. I think she got more creative than I did, because she even dyed some cauliflower blue!

Check out all of the colors, including the blue cauliflower!

The above plate is before the chicken finished (why does roast chicken always take its sweet time?). I hope she will share some of her recipes soon. She did a watermelon salad, a potato gratin (with mustard!) among many other delicious foods.

On the above plate, you can sneak a peek at the carrots for this post and the little roasted tomato (above the cauliflower) that will be in a coming post. I might also share the lemonade recipes (blackberry and peach) that turned out to be super popular.

The recipe for the glazed roasted carrots came from a cookbook I bought at the Le Creuset outlet by Sonia Stevenson called “Roasting”. I had been looking for some more savory recipes, and there were many in this book that looked interesting, starting with these carrots and the tomatoes. I have also made a fish recipe out of it. Everything has been yummy. Because of some ingredients, I have made some substitutions. I will include my versions below.

One of my colorful contributions

I made the candy above using the same ideas from SprinkleBakes‘ Chihuly glass bowls that I also did here.

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