Posts Tagged ‘cookies’

This post is a week overdue, but I hope you’ll indulge me.

I can’t remember ever really hating Valentine’s Day. Most years it’s just a pink and red square on my mind’s calendar. In grade school, I loved buying packs of Valentine’s Day cards, signing my name, and affixing a packet of candy to each note. The school required that if you gave one person a valentine, you had to give one to every kid in the class—a sound policy. But, of course, there were inevitably a few people I thought deserved extra special congratulations for being rad (fourth grade in the 90s, rad = ubercool). Something like these:

So, I’d sort my cards, separate the ones with the best messages and illustrations, and give those to my crush(es). Of course, there were always at least 4 copies of each card, so for every crush that received an accurate message, there were usually at least 2 non-crushes that received exactly the same message. Noting that my system had flaws, I decided to offset this by adding candy hearts to each note. I sorted the candies based on message, shoved the hearts reading “Be Mine” and “Luv Ya!” into my crush(es) envelope(s), and taped them shut so that my plan couldn’t go awry. I figured the killer combo of sugar, pithy declarations, and cartoons would make my admiration clear and my crushes smitten.


But these days when I think about Valentine’s Day, I remember my senior year of college.

Ithaca got thwacked by a massive snowstorm on February 14, 2007. I holed up in my warmly-lit room reading Jane Eyre for class, unwilling to venture into the snow drifts until I had to.

And then a visitor knocked on my door. One of my best friends (and former boyfriend)—let’s call him Q. because it sounds daring and mysterious—knocked on my door with a massive plate of cookies. And not just any cookies—frosted cookies fresh from the oven, sprinkled with mini M&Ms.

While I had been holed up, Q. had been making the rounds, bringing cheer in the form of baked goods to a handful his closest friends. And now, four years later, that’s my most vivid (and default) memory of Valentine’s Day. A day filled with sugary declarations of friendship, not mass market candies.

Weather: Sunny. 34 degrees.


Anna – 7 out of 10 on the “so miserable I can’t get out of bed” to “jumping for joy” scale. Happy memories.

Hannah – ? out of 10.



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Snowed in? Eat Cookies

Wednesday’s blizzard meant a day of working from home for me and my roommates. I decided to punctuate the day with a mid-afternoon molasses cookie break. Then I returned to my computer, fresh coffee and fresh cookies in hand, while the snow piled up outside. Perfect.

Molasses Cookies

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter soft enough to mix
1 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar (Next time I will use less – maybe 1/4 cup)
2 eggs
1/2 cup molasses (I used blackstrap)
2 tbsp vegetable oil (this makes them chewy and delicious! do not replace with butter)
2 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ginger
1 tsp allspice
1/2 tsp salt

Cream: butter and sugars in a medium mixing bowl. Add eggs and mix thoroughly. Add molasses and oil and mix thoroughly

Mix: dry ingredients (flour, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, allspice, salt) in a separate bowl. this ensures that you don’t get clumps of baking soda.

Combine: pour dry ingredients into wet ingredients and mix thoroughly.

Refrigerate: Cover bowl (plastic wrap works well) and refrigerate for an hour or more. Refrigerating keeps them from sticking to your hands in the next step. If you’re not afraid of salmonella, taste test. amazing.

Scoop: Preheat oven to 325 (I did 350). Pour some granulated sugar into a bowl. Scoop up spoonfulls of dough, roll them in your hand so they’re balls, then dip them in sugar. Place them sugar-side up on cookie sheets.

Bake: 10-15 minutes. The top will crack and be a little bit hard to the touch but they will be really soft inside and floppy when you take them off the tray.

adapted from martha stewart’s cookies, which I was opposed to on principle, but oh, wow, they’re good.

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