Cookie Dough Bites

Made these little little guys last night. They are very delicious except that I'm pretty sure you can feel your thighs expanding every time you pop one in your mouth. I'm planning on bringing some to the Christmas Tea tomorrow held by the alumnae association of my sorority. Actually, I'm really supposed to make brownies, so guess I'll be bringing two things. Whatever, who doesn't like cookie dough? The answer is, unless it will kill you, everyone likes it. And this recipe won't make you sick because no raw eggs. I guess it could make you sick because of the amount of butter and sugar but if we try not to OD then I think it'll be OK.

Cookies Dough Bites

Hands-On Time:
20 minutes
Ready In: 1 hour
Yield: 2 dozen cookies


    1 cup salted butter, softened
    1½ cups packed light brown sugar
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    2 cups flour
    6 ounces miniature chocolate chips


  1. Cream butter and sugar together.
  2. Add remaining ingredients and mix well -- use your hands to get it together the best.
  3. Roll into 1-inch balls.
  4. Refrigerate until firm, about 30 minutes. Dip in chocolate, drizzle with chocolate or eat as is -- equally delicious no matter what!
  5. Let stand at room temperature for about 10 minutes before serving.
  6. Store in the refrigerator.


Things that suck about living alone: Can't watch scary movies

I once tweeted a whole post series about the drawbacks to living alone.

One of the things that bothers me the most that I can't do is watch scary movies. There's no way in hell I can enjoy the hit show Walking Dead because I would keep thinking a zombie is hiding under my air mattress. As a result I spent my "weekend" watching Up, Beauty and the Beast and Toy Story. Which, I love, I'm a Disney fanatic (please don't try to tell me all of the issues with the movies, I know they're there, but I can politely ignore them if I want.) Still, it would be nice to branch out.

I did, however, watch The Lovely Bones. I read the book when I was in middle school and decided I'd give the movie a try. For the record, scary movies aren't the only ones you shouldn't watch. Ones about murderers are also bad news. Not to ruin anything, but come on, a little girl gets killed in the first 30 minutes. So, that is terrifying. Things that talk about death, not so great. You'd think I would've thought of that. For future reference, just keep that in mind. Now I'm going to have dreams about dying.

Only watch happy movies when you're alone. Children's movies work the best honestly, because even romantic comedies can make you wallow all night.


Brie-stuffed Latkes

So, excited, now I have leftover brie to eat with crackers! Brie is my favorite cheese. I bet if you really think hard about it you have a favorite cheese, too. That'd be a pretty good ice breaker question instead of what's your favorite color I think. Anyway, these took FOREVER to make, as do most things.

They are good though, but I almost lit my apartment on fire...again. I was holding a paper towel that was on fire, staring at it trying to figure out the best course of action. I ended up throwing it into a pot and pouring water on it.

Also, Happy Hanukkah from your Catholic friend. I know it doesn't start until the 20th, but I'll be surrounded by Christmas time festivities then, so I figured I'd make these early.

Brie-Stuffed Latkes

4 large potatoes, parboiled and peeled
2 large eggs, scrambled
1 medium onion
3 cloves garlic
2/3 pound Brie, rind on
Handful of all-puropse flour
1 tsp baking powder
Dash of milk, soymilk, cream, or water
Salt and pepper, to taste

Vegetable oil, to shallow-fry

We're following this technique almost totally - the only difference is the stuffing part, which happens in the pan, so procede as decribed - parboiling, peeling and shredding your taters - shredding the onion over the same disc, adding your minced garlic, salt and pepper, then mix. Add your eggs, flour, baking powder, mix, and then a tiny pour of milk, until you see batter thinly coating each shred of tater.

Heat about 1/2 inch of oil in a heavy iron skillet to medium. Have your cheese at the ready. We're keeping the heat a little lower than usual to give us time to make and stuff three latkes at a time.

Fork about a tablespoon of batter into the pan and flatten it with the back of a spoon. Quickly press a piece of brie into the batter, leaving a border of pancake free from cheese all the way around it. Fold it to fit if need be. Fork an equal portion of batter over the cheese, making sure to enclose it completely. Procede to make 2 more latkes in this way - by time you finish the third, it'll be time to flip the first.

When you flip these babies, press down slightly to compress, but be gentle. You don't want to squash your cheese out of its pocket.

Continue making latkes until the batter is gone. You'll have 10-12 large pancakes.


The most wonderful time of the year...

You know that seasonal depression stuff, this is about the time it strikes. In college I came down with this every year. The holidays are both the warmest and coldest period on the calendar. A time to see family which can be as stressful as it is comforting, and a time to be with those you love or to see others with people they love. Overall, it can add to a lot of anxiety with gifts to buy, travel, parties and decorating. I love all of this stuff more than I can say, but being away from home like I am, it's a little isolating no matter how many gifts I wrap or cookies I bake.

So here are some things that are cheering me up now while my SAD is kicking in. First, a cartoon a coworker showed me that is completely unrelated to the holidays. It's kind of a feel-good thing for when you are depressed.

My list of feel-good Christmas movies (along with some of my favorite clips from each):

A list of Christmas songs:
All I Want For Christmas Is You-Mariah Carey (NOT Justin Beiber, that never should've been a thing)

I hope all of this helps you get through the season in some way. Remember, 2012 is a fresh start.


Red Velvet Cookies

For this recipe I kind of cheated a little by using a box of cake mix. I found a recipe from scratch on a blog, but all of the reviews said it was lacking, and since I had a box of red velvet cake mix in my cabinet already, I figured I'd try to use it.

They really are delicious and a pretty dark red color, observe.

I obviously put Christmas colored sprinkles on the white half of the cookies so they look pretty festive. The one thing I would say about them, is that I waited the hour after I rolled the dough into a log and put it into the refrigerator. It didn't set as well as I think it should have. I'm sure it would've been fine if I had left it in over night, but I'm impatient. So, I ended up just cutting the log and then rolling it "slice" into a ball and pressing it down into a round shape. So the edges were a little ragged and some of the cookies are different sizes, but that doesn't really bother me.

Red and White Velvet Cookies from Duncanhines.com
IngredientsBaking Instructions


White Chocolate Dip:

  • 2 bars (6 oz. each) white chocolate premium baking bars, broken into pieces
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable shortening
  1. Melt butter; set aside to cool. Place cake mix, egg, cooled butter and vanilla in large mixing bowl. Mix by hand until well blended and dough is formed.
  2. Form dough into a smooth 12-inch log on wax paper or parchment making sure it is even in thickness end to end. Wrap in wax paper; seal in plastic wrap. Refrigerate 1 hour or overnight.
  3. Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly grease baking sheets. Unwrap dough log and set on wax paper. Using a sharp knife, cut into 48 slices about 1/4-inch thick. Place on cool baking sheets about 2 inches apart.
  4. Bake, 1 sheet at a time, in center of oven for 10 to 12 minutes or until set. Cool 1 minute. Transfer to wire rack to cool completely.
  5. Make dip by placing pieces of baking bar in small, DRY, microwave-safe bowl along with shortening. Microwave on 50% power for 30 seconds. Stir to blend. If needed, continue to microwave in 30-second intervals. Blend each time. Avoid overheating.
  6. Dip each cookie into chocolate to coat half of cookie. Place on wax paper or parchment-lined sheets and refrigerate about 15 minutes or until dip is set. Store in airtight container with wax paper or parchment separating layers.
  7. Tips:

  8. For best results, bake only one sheet of cookies at a time. If two are baked at time, rotate sheets midway through baking.
  9. For variation, top white chocolate with chopped pistachios or pecans, crushed peppermint candies, crushed pretzels, praline crunch, colored sugar or other cookie decorations before it is set.
  10. Do NOT thin white chocolate with butter, margarine or water. Moisture will cause the chocolate to seize or tighten.
  11. Place melted white chocolate in a freezer-weight zippered plastic bag. Snip a very small hole from bottom corner and drizzle white chocolate over top of cookie in place of dipping half of cookie.


Buffalo Chicken Rolls

This recipe comes from the blog Can You Stay for Dinner? I totally don't like blue cheese so I just used mozzarella, I'm sure you could use any kind you want. This recipe made a ton of rolls. They're good but I needed to use more sauce, I feel like I couldn't taste it after I baked them. Also, I feel as though I have no future working at a Chinese restaurant. I was a complete failure at rolling these things. I started getting better towards the end, but it was just never quite right. O well, they're easy to store and to put in a container to take for lunches at work, so that's nice. I dipped mine in ranch instead of blue cheese dressing.

Buffalo Chicken Rolls

12 egg roll wrappers (roughly 4 square inches)

1 cup cooked and shredded chicken (6 ounces)

1/2- 2/3 cup Frank’s Red Hot Sauce

1 cup crumbled blue cheese (4 ounces)

1 cup broccoli slaw or cole slaw (dry)

Small bowl of water

Nonstick cooking spray

Blue cheese dressing, for serving

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Lay egg roll wrappers on a clean work surface. In a small bowl, stir chicken* (see note below) and hot sauce until well coated, using more or less sauce depending on your spice preference. The meat should be moist with sauce.

Begin by placing one tablespoon of the broccoli slaw on the diagonal of the bottom right corner of one of the wrappers. Next, place 2 tablespoons of shredded spicy chicken evenly on top of the slaw. Spoon 1 tablespoon of the blue cheese crumbles over the chicken. Do not overfill.

To fold: Fold the bottom right corner over the stuffing mixture so that it covers it completely, with the tip of the corner now pointing to the center of the egg roll wrapper. Fold in the bottom left corner, followed by the right, so that you now have formed an envelope. Roll the wrap upward one time, leaving the top left corner open. Wet your index finger in the small bowl of water and press to moisten the top left corner. Now fold that down on top of the filled roll, sealing it like you would an envelope.

Repeat with remaining rolls.

Place the rolls on a wire rack set on top of a cookie sheet (or just on a greased cookie sheet) coated with nonstick cooking spray. Spritz each roll evenly with nonstick cooking spray. Bake for 12-15 minutes, or until the rolls crisp and turn a light golden brown.

*Note: To make the chicken, place 1/2 lb of uncooked chicken breast in a small pot and fill with enough water just to cover it. Bring to a boil on your stovetop, reduce the heat slightly, then simmer for about 12 minutes, or until cooked through. Drain and let cool before shredding with two forks, pulling against the grain of the meat.

Here's my finished product.



I was sick earlier this week, figures because I was on four different airplanes the week before. I knew I had to pick something up. You know when you have a fever and you just feel cold and all around not good? That's exactly how I felt. I got a flu shot for the first time this year at work, it was one of the worst decisions of my life. I felt like I was dying that night. Sometimes if your body isn't used to the shot you actually have flu symptom. It was literally the worst...and that same feeling happened this week.

There are drawbacks to living alone and being sick is one of them. What if I pass out or die or something and no one knows for days or weeks? That's paranoia talking but it could happen. So, I have this little guide to being sick.

Here is a Broke-Ass Guide To Being Sick from a blog I found. It actually has relatively decent tips. Personally, I don't do anything fancy.
  1. Take a shower, unless you feel like you might pass out or are dizzy. I had a friend in college once pass out from a fever because he got to dehydrated. He was fine, don't worry. Which reminds me...
  2. Drink a massive amount of water and/or Gatorade. You really need to stay hydrated. Orange juice only works before you get sick, fyi.
  3. Take Tylenol or Tylenol Cold or something. This may or may not help, but if it does, it will be totally worth it. Not that I'm trying to push meds on you, but I hate when people complain about how they feel but won't take steps to fix it.
  4. If you can, try to eat a small something, like chicken noodles soup. If you can't, make tea. It'll warm you up and tea is supposed to be great for you.
  5. Either curl up in bed or on the couch (I camped out on the couch in my Snuggy, that's right I said it) and watch TV or a movie. This is important because reading while your sick actually uses unnecessary energy. Disney movies are fantastic to watch when you're ill. It's kind of like comfort food for your eyes.
I hope these help. Better yet, wash your hands with the fervor of someone with OCD and drink your orange juice. Maybe you can fend off the sneezy season's advances. Good luck. Oh, and if someone by you is sneezing, go take a shower immediately. They are diseased and are probably splashing their germs on everything that walks - that includes you. Take the necessary precautions to avoid contracting whatever they so graciously doused you with.


The Rainbow Connection

It was a rough Monday and one of the only things that got me through it completely was The Muppets. I have been talking about them a lot, but they just are so positive, it's hard to not rely on them for a little pick me up...once a week. I mean it's better than drugs right?

Funny story about the Muppets, Fox News thinks they are communists. How could anyone think such a thing of Kermit? I mean, it's not easy being green, I guess. The point they are making is that the bad guy in the new movie is an oil baron. Fox News sees this as an attack on corporations and the oil industry. I think this is a completely ridiculous idea. The Muppets don't even talk about the oil or environment, they just want to save their old studio. Who could attack the sweet little Muppets? My inner child is offended she's throwing a hissy fit in the Muppets' honor.

I LOVE this clip with the composer of the new Muppets movie, Bret McKenzie of Flight of the Conchords fame, and the ever adorable Kermit. This is the cutest. "Life's a Happy Song when there's someone by your side to sing along," and them singing it together is a big, juicy, fuzzy feeling that I want to hug and squeeze and never let go. Thinking about this song makes me want to smile and tap dance my way through even the gloomiest days. "Life's a taco!"

More fun Muppet stuff. Here's the Muppets performing Bohemian Rhapsody. Seriously, this is the best thing I've ever seen. Totally worth a watch.

Another news story about childhood shows is that Herman Caine actually used a Pokemon song in some of his speeches. He always cited the references as "a poet." Apparently, the song comes from the movie Pokemon 2000 and when Caine heard the song during the Olympics he fell in love with it. Then he learned it was "The Power of One" from Pokemon, but he felt really moved by the lyrics. That's hilarious! I loved Pokemon, but this guy was running for president quoting a show about anime monsters from Japan that was popular in the 90s. What? Tell me if that makes sense. You can't make that stuff up.


Gifts for Parents

When I'm at home or around my family I tend to stop blogging for some reason. I'm not sure if it's because I never get to see them or if it's because they think it's rude if I'm around them and messing with my phone or computer. Either way, I usually don't mess with Tweeting and blogging. But this post is dedicated to family members.

Giving gifts to parents and relatives might as well be impossible. They always tell me to never get them anything, but I always want to, because let's be honest, even if we aren't living under their roof and they aren't paying for our schooling anymore, we have cost them a fortune. So, although they tell me to not waste my money, I feel like it's my duty to show some gratitude.

One year I got all three of us tickets to see the Trans-Siberian Orchestra. That was by far the most expensive present I've purchased for them, and the most awesome. With very little money to spare this year I decided to put together a little basket of ethnic southern foods. You know, Louisiana hot sauce, grits, Moon Pies (in Mobile, AL they drop a Moon Pie on New Years, dead serious) Cajun spices, and an ornament that says "Merry Christmas, y'all." Adorable, I know. This would work for where ever you are living, assuming it isn't the same city as your parents or extended family. Just put together things that are native or common in your area that might not be for them. This whole idea is pretty cheap.

Another cheap idea is making them a CD. I know that sounds weird to make a mix tape for your parents, but I did it when I first moved to the South for my job. I mailed a CD to them and I could tell they really loved it. Here are a few songs you can put on it. Oh, and they're country songs but my parents hate country and they still liked these songs because of the lyrics.

This year I also made them something. I bought one of those square frames that are shadow boxes. That means you can put 3-D things in them without them touching the glass. So I printed out three different pictures of me with my parents, bought some scrapbook paper and some pearls that stick in scrapbooks, I already owned these little black square tiles that look like they could almost be scrabble pieces but they're black and not wooden. So I cut the scrapbook paper into a square, used another piece of scrapbook paper that was in the same color scheme (I was going with gold) to add kind of an accent. I glued the pictures onto the paper, clued the tiles to say family across the bottom of the paper, used the pearls to accent and then pained the word "Love" in cursive in the free space. Sounds like it took lots of time but it really didn't I gave them something they can put in the house that doesn't just look like I threw it together. So there's another idea.

Happy gift hunting. You could always go with the tie or robe idea. I mean, everyone needs those things. Not ties of course but you get my drift.