Mission Statement

Culinary Adventures in a College Kitchen

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Peppermint Crisscross Cookies

I do a lot of holiday baking. A lot.

I love baking for friends and family, though. It allows me all the fun of being in the kitchen without having to search out all of my elastic waistband pants.

I also love baking at home. Why, do you ask? Well, it has a lot to do with this handsome piece of apparatus. I don't regularly objectify kitchen pieces, but this one is just asking for it. I mean, look at it. Seriously.

I have its child (the hand-held mixer) at school and it is not nearly as fun to play with.

Anyhoo, for my friends this year I decided to make these peppermint cookies. I actually found them in a Weight Watchers magazine. There is nothing WW about them. Trust me.

They are delicious and a cinch to make. Just pray that your oven doesn't start smoking while preheating like mine did. And that you don't end up waving oven mits frantically in front of the alarm so that it doesn't sound.

Peppermint Crisscross Cookies


2 1/2 cups flour
3/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup butter
3/4 cup sugar
1 egg
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/3 cup crushed peppermint candies


Preheat oven to 350.

Combine the flour, baking powder, and salt in a mixing bowl and set aside. In another bowl, cream the butter with a mixer until fluffy. Add the sugar and combine. Next, add the egg and vanilla, mixing until well incorporated. Add the flour mixture, doing it in two batches. Use either a mixer or a spatula. Fold in the peppermint candies.

Drop tablespoons on a lined or greased baking sheet, placing the dough 2 inches apart. With a fork, press the tines firmly on the top of the cookie to form the crisscross pattern.

Bake for 14-15 minutes until the bottoms are brown and the centers are firm.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Sweet Potato Lentil Stew

Want to know the scariest six letter word for a college student?


Six innocent, innocuous letters prove positively terrifying when linked together. I am breaking out into hives just thinking about it.

In general, I am not a nervous tester. I do my preparation, I know the material, and there is little to worry about. Finals are different, though. I think it has to do with the finality of it all. It's the last grade. Last chance.

Anyway, in an attempt to not entirely freak out over it all, I am going to share a recipe with you. It is delicious. It is quick. And it is warm and filling. Not going to lie-I ate this for three meals one day. It's that good.

Sweet Potato Lentil Stew


2-3 medium sweet potatoes
1 cup lentils
7 cups stock
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp coriander


Peel the sweet potatoes and cube into uniform sized pieces. Put the potatoes and lentils into a large soup bowl and cover with the stock. Cover the pot and bring to a boil. Add the spices and let simmer for 40 minutes until the potatoes are tender.

Serve on its own or over some brown rice or spinach.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Cranberry Sauce

There are many good things to say about dorm life:


Dining Halls

Elevator boys

Not even elevator boys, though, can redeem my dorm from the pesky nuisance that is the room below me. This room has a girl who happens to plays the violin. At all hours of the day and night. For the past two nights I have been woken up at midnight by off-tune scales.

I will feed my irritation with a holiday classic.

Cranberry Sauce

1 lb fresh cranberries
1/4 cup sugar
1/3 cup water

Combine all the ingredients in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and let cook for 5-7 minutes until the cranberries begin to pop.

Take off heat and let cool. The finished cranberry sauce should still be a bit chunky. I generally eat it cold, but that just may be a weird eating habit of mine.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

3-Ingredient-Butternut Squash Soup

Hello everyone!!

It has been a while. And while I would like to say the lag in posting was due to excessive schoolwork or some other noble cause, it isn't. I ran out of batteries.

So, with batteries bought and the stove a-burnin', I bring you a recipe.

3-Ingredient-Butternut Squash Soup


1 medium butternut squash (peeled and cubed)
3 1/2 cups water
2 pinches salt


Place cubed squash into a large soup pot and cover with the water. Add a pinch of salt, cover the pot, and bring to a boil. Let simmer for 15 minutes.

With a potato masher, break down the squash in the bowl. Add a pinch of salt, cover, and let simmer for another 7-10 minutes.

Try adding some spices at the end. Add a little curry powder for kick, or try some cinnamon or nutmeg for a true taste of the seasons :)