Saturday, January 15, 2011

Shortbread Cookies or Bring on the Butter (Part Deux)

As I mentioned in my previous shortbread cookie post; I was thinking of tweaking the recipe to add more flava-flav, more zing, more oomph! I went a little nuts and used vanilla bean paste. I know what you're thinking; whoa, she's nuts, she's gone off the deep end! Well I did and it was delicious. I also doubled the recipe:

1 cup cornstarch
1 cup icing sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups butter, softened
2 teaspoons vanilla bean paste
4 squares Baker's chocolate (dark)

Wait?! What did that say? Chocolate? What is that for? Umm, for dipping the butter filled cookie goodness in of course!

I've never baked with vanilla bean paste and I can't believe the difference it makes. It adds the vanilla bean speckles that everyone loves so much, and intense vanilla flavour without diluting the dough. It smells wonderful also.

The result was a much better tasting shortbread in my opinion. I really wasn't happy with the previous recipe, it was definitely lacking in flavour. Then I really went nuts and melted the chocolate in a double-boiler and dipped half of each cookie and let it cool. Next time I will dip the entire batch. It was that good. I might even try to find a better quality baking chocolate (cross border shopping anyone?!) I think it would be much better with a richer, more high quality chocolate taste.

(Did I take any photos?  Maybe, but the camera is with Fred in Texas at a gig, so I'll post pics if there are any . . .)

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Red Velvet Momma Loves, Loves, Loves Luzianne Iced Tea Bags

*** I'll be posting some of my favourite things on my blog.  I haven't received compensation or incentive to review any products.  Some of these goodies are found in the USA, so for my Canadian friends - you'll have to hunt these down!  Some products are uniquely Canadian. ***

I love sweet tea.  From south of the Mason-Dixon line.  I live north of the Mason-Dixon line.  I live north of the border.  You can't get sweet tea here.  You can have hot tea, almost too many varieties really.  Tea Lattes, green tea, white tea, tea in ginger ale; is it really too much to ask for a decent iced sweet tea?

When we travel south I can't wait for even a McDonald's sweet tea.  I'm that starved for the yummy sweet caffeine slurp from a straw!  So I looked for "recipes" for sweet tea and found out about Luzianne.  It's from Louisiana, hence the name, and it's made for iced tea.  I lucked out when I found it at the SuperTarget at Mall of Millenia in Orlando.  And it was on sale!  I bought six boxes, and now whenever Fred travels south for work or we head down to Walt Disney World, I stock up.  And I make it almost all the time.

Yum.  Going to brew a pitcher now.

Ugh, I really want to blog - but I can't find my Mojo . . .

I'm having a really hard time finding my mojo.  I want to blog my little heart out, and I've started a bunch of new entries but I've yet to complete them or post anything in ages.

Christmas has come and gone, I baked/cooked/slow-cooked/ordered-in until my fingers ached, yet I can't seem to find anything to say.  So I'll start with baby steps and post a couple of little things while I sit here and catch up on my PVR'd episodes of Coronation Street (from now on I'll refer to this as "Corrie" or "The Street").  Corrie has been my guilty pleasure since high school.  I'm still baffled as to why the CBC broadcasts episodes 9 months behind the current UK episodes.  I find this most irritating.

So here we go!  New post to follow - thanks for sticking with me.