OK, first things first. I have to tell you about this event I went to last Thursday at the Hazen Golf Course. It was an oh so fun wine tasting and when they have the next one and you are in Hazen, Beulah or a surrounding community – you HAVE to check it out. I didn’t take my camera even though I wanted to. I think that is a bit over-the-top, but I bet you would love to see the photos of the gorgeous wine and oh yeah, food too. The event was advertised as a wine tasting with appetizers but this was like oh so much more. You could buy wine right there or I believe it is on sale throughout this week at Hazen Bottle Shop as they supplied the wines.
First off, after you get in the door you pay the very reasonable $5 entry fee and you are given a wine glass and sheet of paper telling you about all the wines. I went into this event thinking I would try every wine. Ha! No chance – there were so many! I did try my fair share though and they have everything from simple, sweet wines to bold reds. I found out the next day (after visiting with a co-worker about the event) that they also had a port which I would have loved to try. And now for the food – this was so much more than appetizers! Krause’s Super Valu had a SPREAD of stuff. Meats (hello, sun tried tomato turkey!), cheeses, breads, dips, boneless chicken wings (my favorite!) and desserts. Even if you just sample some of the items – it was like a legit meal. I would love to do this every Thursday please! Also, this is a super fun social time. I saw so many people I knew and it was fun to catch up. The event was packed with people! Thank you Hazen Bottle and Krause’s for such a fun night! Mr. FeistyEats and I are most definitely not wine connoisseurs, but we enjoyed all the tastes. I will be there for the next one!
OK! Onto the cookies! For such a simple thing, cookies can be complex. Fat vs. thin, chewy vs. crispy, candy or traditional chips, etc. There are ways to manipulate cookie recipes to make them more to your preference by changing up the ratios of brown sugar, butter temperature, flour and eggs. I myself prefer chewy, thick and soft cookies. YUM! Here are a couple tips to achieve that texture if you are into that style.
- Make sure your butter is at room temperature
- Make sure your eggs are at room temperature – if they are not, submerse them in warm water for about 10 minutes
- Whip your butter and sugars until creamy – even if the recipe doesn’t specify that
- Add your dry ingredients gradually and mix thoroughly, but do not overmix
I really love to bake. Even though a lot of people say they don’t because you have to follow the recipe for the item to turn out correctly. I don’t find this totally true. There is definitely a science as to why you add the proportions as stated, but you can tweak recipes or swap items. I have had several failures, but after a while you find out what you can swap and it makes baking a lot more fun.
This is a recipe where you could swap out items to your preference. I found this recipe on the blog Inside Bru Crew Life and tweaked it only slightly. Mr. FeistyEats loved these!
- 1 c. butter, softened
- 3/4 c. brown sugar
- 1/4 c. sugar
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- 2 eggs (at room temperature)
- 1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
- 1 box instant pumpkin spice pudding (3.4 oz.), available seasonally at Krause’s
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. baking soda
- 2 1/4 c. flour
- 1/2 c. M&M’s (use regular, mini or seasonal kinds)
- 1 c. mini chocolate chips
In a mixing bowl, beat the butter and sugars until creamy. Add the eggs and vanilla and beat again. Sift together the flour, baking soda, pumpkin pie spice, pudding mix and salt. Slowly add to the butter mixture. Stir in the M&M’s and chocolate chips by hand.
Use a teaspoon to scoop the dough onto a baking sheet. Bake at 375* for 8-9 minutes. They will appear undone, but they will set up while cooling. Let cool on baking sheet for a few minutes before removing to a wire rack. Store in a sealed container. Makes about 48 cookies.
Whew, I am wordy today! Let’s take a pet break. Hello from Brinklie cat and Winston – always in the kitchen and in my way! Still love him though. Look at his eyebrows. What a sweetheart.
Mmmm! Remember my tip; cream together the butters and sugars. You want it thick and luscious. Remember to wipe down the sides of your mixer.
I like this side-by-side comparison of before and after, it show if the cookies spread or not. These just flatten out slightly, but are still thick!
Like any cookie – these are best eaten warm. Store them in an airtight container and consume within a few days for best results.
My plate! These would be a great Thanksgiving treat or alternative to pie. Enjoy!