Friday, June 22, 2012

My Favorite Cookies

I'm putting my favorite cookie recipe here for safe keeping.  I actually got this recipe from a friend many years ago.  I always use it when I make Chocolate Chip cookies.  It is not the goody kind of cookie.  It's more of a firm, but not hard cookie that has a very good taste.  I think it is the best!  And so good with milk.

I actually think this recipe calls for too many chocoate chips.  So you can probably cut back on them a bit.  I usually do.

1 cup shortening (I use butter flavor)
3/4 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup sugar 
2 eggs, beaten
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. vanilla
1 TBS. water, warm
3 cups flour, sifted
1/4 tsp. salt
14 oz chocolate chips
1 cup walnuts

Dissolve baking soda in warm water. Cream shortening and sugars together.   Add eggs and mix until well blended.   Combine flour and salt, add to batter a little at a time.   Stir soda water and vanilla in for moisture.   Add chips and nuts.   Drop by rounded teaspoon on a greased cookie sheet and and bake at 350 degrees for 10-12 minutes.   

In my oven 10 minutes is usually long enough, so check them.   They are good when they are just barely golden on the edges.

Also I like to keep the cookie size fairly small that is why I use a teaspoon instead of a table spoon to drop them onto the cookie sheet.   The smaller cookies have a nice texture when they are cooked.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

All The Way From Austria

Look what I got in the mail!! All the way from Austria!

These last few months I have tried to participate in a weekly soap making challenge hosted by Amy at Great Cakes Soapworks.  I was not able to do every weekly challenge, but I did a few.  And the ones I haven't been able to do yet, I will try on my own over time.  At the end of the challenges Amy hosted a swap and paired us up with soapmakers from around the world.   

My swap partner is a lady named Marina who lives in Austria.  And this is the lovely package of beautiful goodies that she sent me!  We were only supposed to send one or two bars.  But Marina sent me a whole box full of things.  There are 5 lovely soaps, a bunch of handmade gift tags, some cute stickers and a reindeer post card.  It was almost like Christmas opening this package and finding all these treasures inside.  

Each bar was labeled with a cigar band label and on the back of each label was written the ingredients.  I am excited because Marina has used some ingredients that I have never used yet, like Rice Bran oil, Palm Kernal oil and Babassu oil.  Each bar looks like it has different ingredients.  The one I decided to use first is the one labeded Sea.  It is the blue bar.  The smell is fantastic and has a smooth creamy texture.  It has a fresh fragrance with what smells to me like a touch of clove.  There is also a decorative imprint stamped into the side. 

Click on the picture above to see how beautiful the soaps are!  I took the wrappers off long enough to take a picture and then replaced the wrappers.  The swirls are so pretty.  The yellow Lemon Parfait bar is colored in a soft gradient from darker yellow to almost white.  It also has some very pretty gold sparkles on top,  The Tropica bar (red and yellow) has a touch of red sparkle on top also.  All the bars have very pretty swirls. 

Thank you Marina!  I love these soaps.  And I had such a fun time with this swap.  Your package that I sent you should be to you any day now.  I hope you enjoy what I sent.  I of course love the soaps you sent me.  And the tags are so beautiful and I know they must have taken a lot of time to make.  Thanks for the stickers.  I will share them with my grandchildren.  Thank you for all your hard work.