Monday, March 29, 2010


Sweet Jeanette here ...

Remember these books from last month?  Did you guess which we'd choose?
We chose  A Passion for Baking

The hostesses for this Cook-N-Critique were Saucy and Cupcake (mother and daughter team who happen to be my aunt and cousin!) 

We planned to have our "eat - n- critique" on the porch. 
See... there's even a "clue" as to what it is.
But it was felt that it was way too windy (good old Florida! LOL) for our eating outside.  So Saucy and Cupcake worked double time and made the inside beautiful for us.
(I just love wisteria!!!)

(isn't that pretty?)

and now for the "spread"   (YUM)
I'll let everyone tell their own individual stories on what they made.  As you know in a previous post Cupcake and D-Licious couldn't decide on one recipe so they made two.  Oh my, I'm so glad they did they were great...especially those muffins, or were they cupcakes???  (Oops!  I just told you what Cupcake made). 

I made Strawberries and Cream Cookies
I'll post the recipe later this week for you.  It's a shortbread cookie that uses dried strawberries, white chocolate and cream.  I don't know why cream got top billing over white chocolate because the recipe only called for ONE TABLESPOON of whipping cream but I'm not the author so....
The book said you could order the dried strawberries on line from but I just knew I had seen them at the health foods store in town so I went there.  They had these dehydrated snack berries.  I couldn't quite visualize how many bags would made 3/4 cup so I bought three - at 5.00 and change for one bag, that's an expensive batch of cookies with the strawberries alone!  I should've went to!  LOL
Anyway, the recipe said to bake for 40-50 minutes.  Holy Cow!!! Are you  kidding me?  I set the timer for 25 minutes and they were d-o-n-e, done!  (Ya pre-heat at 325 degrees and when you put the cookies in the oven you immediately turn it down to 300 but still, 25 minutes was plenty of time, perhaps 20 minutes would've been better. 
There was the general concensus of a "pattern" from this author.  She loved double pans and parchment paper.  I had to use a double cookie sheet and then parchment paper on top of that.  Now, I can see using parchment paper with cookies,  but Buttercream  made a cake (oops!  I just told you what another person made!) and she had to use a cookie sheet, parchment paper on top of that and then her parchment-lined cake pan on top of the parchment lined cookie sheet.  Hmmmm..   Can someone tell me (honestly, I really am interested in an answer) why all that?  We kind of felt like it was "overkill", but who knows.

During the making of these cookies, I kept having this nagging feeling maybe I should add some strawberry flavoring, but because we must be true to the letter of the recipe so we can give the best evaluation we can, I didn't do it.  (I still wish I had!).  These cookies were "ok", but if it has the name strawberry in it, I want it bursting with strawberry flavor.  Again, maybe it was a simple case of ordering those dried berries from nuts on line!

I told the group, I was glad I drew cookies because every 9/11 I take cookies to the firestation and am always looking for a "wow" cookie.  This wasn't it.  First, it didn't make all that many (it said makes 2-3 dozen...uh-uh.  MAYBE 2, but definitely not 3 with the size cookie cutter it called for.  Second, dried strawberries aren't readily on hand I found out.  Third, for the steps necessary in this cookie recipe, I would expect a better "wow" factor.    Oh, and fourth,  my finished cookie didn't look like the picture!  LOL!
 I give it one spoon.

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