Month: February 2011

Homemade Tagalongs

It’s Girl Scout cookie season! Unfortunately for me, I don’t know any Girl Scouts and haven’t had the chance to order any cookies this year. My favorite Girl Scout cookie is the Tagalong (which should come as no surprise given that it’s a combination of two of my favorite things: chocolate and peanut butter). I am a devout follower of We Are Not Martha and almost squealed with delight when I saw this recipe! It’s a simple and delicious recipe – and they taste just like the real thing. Check back tomorrow for a recipe for Thin Mints!

Homemade Tagalongs
Recipe source: We Are Not Martha
Print Recipe

• 2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter, room temperature
• 1 cup sugar
• 1 large egg
• 1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
• 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
• 3 cups all-purpose flour
• 1/2 cup smooth peanut butter
• 1/2 cup powdered sugar
• 2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips (you could use milk or dark chocolate as alternatives)

1. Cream together butter and sugar using the paddle attachment of an electric mixer. Beat until smooth. Then add in the egg and vanilla and beat until incorporated and smooth.
2. Turn the mixer to low and add in the salt and flour. Mix until well incorporated.
3. Shape dough into a cylinder with a diameter of about 2-3 inches. Wrap the dough in parchment paper and put it in the freezer for at least 25 minutes (I froze mine overnight).
4. When the dough is sufficiently chilled, slice it into 1/8 inch disks and place on baking sheets. Slice 30 cookies and then wrap the remainder of the dough in plastic wrap and stick it back in the freezer for another time. If you want to use all the dough to make about 60 cookies, you’ll want to double the measurement of peanut butter, confectioner sugar, and chocolate that you use later.
5. Bake the cookies at 350 degrees for about 8-10 minutes. Then place the cookies on a cooling rack and let them cool completely.
6. Make the peanut butter filling by mixing together the peanut butter and powdered sugar.
7. Melt the chocolate chips over a double broiler (or in the microwave).
8. Assemble the cookies by pressing small discs of peanut butter onto each cookie. Then dip the cookie into the melted chocolate and coat.
9. Place coated cookies on parchment or waxed paper to cool.


I’m escaping to Florida for the next 10 days! Key West and Disney, here I come. I have a bunch of posts scheduled, but I won’t be able to approve comments or answer emails until I return. Hope you’re all having a great weekend!

Pistachio Cookies

Pistachios are my favorite nut. I would eat them constantly – if could afford to! (side note: why are nuts always so expensive?) Did you know that pistachios are one of the most nutrient dense nuts? Did you know that they are one of the lowest calorie and lowest fat nuts? Did you know that they are one of the highest fiber nuts? Did you know that they are one of the highest antioxidant nuts?

Well you do now. So let’s throw all of the good nutritional information out the window and mix them with sugar, white chocolate, and butter!

Pistachio Cookies
Recipe source: Land O’ Lakes
Print Recipe

1 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup coarsely chopped shelled pistachios

Candy coating:
6 oz. vanilla candy coating (I used white chocolate chips instead)
1 teaspoon shortening
1/2 cup coarsely chopped shelled pistachios

1. Combine butter and brown sugar in large bowl; beat at medium speed until creamy. Reduce speed to low; add flour, almond extract, and vanilla. Beat until well mixed and dough forms. Stir in 1/2 cup pistachios until evenly distributed throughout dough.
2. Divide dough in half; shape each half into a 10-inch log. Wrap each in plastic food wrap; refrigerate until firm (at least 3 hours or overnight).
3. Heat oven to 350F. Cut 1 log at a time, keeping remaining log refrigerated, into 1/4-inch slices with sharp knife. Place onto parchment-lined cookie sheets. Bake for 8-10 minutes, or until edges are lightly browned. Cool 1 minute on cookie sheets and then transfer to a wire cooling rack.
4. While the cookies are cooling, make the candy coating. Place candy coating (or white chocolate chips) and shortening in a small microwave-safe bowl. Microwave for 1 minute, stir, and continue microwaving in 15-second increments until the coating is melted and smooth. Be careful not to burn the coating or chocolate.
5. Place a sheet of waxed paper onto a flat surface. Dip each cookie halfway into the melted candy coating; shake off excess. Place onto waxed paper and immediately decorate with pistachios.

Broken Glass Jello

This recipe involves no baking, no fancy techniques, no expensive ingredients, and not much work! It is, however, a little time-consuming! I made this recipe for two reasons: 1) the fire alarm in my apartment blares if I use my oven, so I’ve had a slight aversion to baking lately and 2) I LOVE JELLO.

Broken Glass Jello
Recipe source: The Food Librarian
Print Recipe

4 boxes (3 oz. each) of Jell-O in different flavors (I used strawberry, orange, pineapple, and lime)
1 can (14 oz.) sweetened condensed milk
2 envelopes unflavored gelatin (Knox brand)

1. For each flavor, dissolve one box of jello in one cup of boiling water. Pour into a container and chill overnight. After chilling, cut them into small blocks (as shown in the photo above). Carefully mix the blocks in a 9×13″ pan.
2. In a separate bowl, sprinkle 2 envelopes unflavored gelatin into 1/2 cup cold water. After the gelatin blooms, add 1-1/2 cups boiling water and dissolve. Add the can of condensed milk. Stir and cool. Once the mixture has cooled, pour over the jello squares and chill overnight.
3. Cut into blocks or shapes and serve.

Orange Cornmeal Crisps

I’ve been on a cornmeal kick lately with my baking! This recipe is for all of the orange lovers out there.

Orange Cornmeal Crisps
Recipe source: FamilyFun Magazine
Print Recipe

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup fine cornmeal
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1 large egg
1 to 2 teaspoons orange zest
1/2 teaspoon orange extract


2 cups powdered sugar
Zest and juice of two medium oranges
Pinch of salt

1. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, 3/4 cup cornmeal, baking powder, and salt; then set mixture aside.
2. Using an electric mixer set on medium speed, beat the butter, sugar, and egg until creamy (about 2 minutes). Reduce the speed to low; add the flour mixture, zest, and orange extract and beat until the mixture pulls away from the sides and forms a dough (about 1 minute).
3. Divide the dough in half and form each half into a 12-inch-long, 1-1/2-inch-wide log. Cover the dough in plastic wrap and chill until firm, about 1 hour in the refrigerator or 20 minutes in the freezer.
4. Heat the oven to 375F. Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper. Spread the remaining 1/4 cup cornmeal on a small, flat tray; roll each log in the cornmeal to coat. Cut the logs into 1/2-inch thick slices and place them 1 inch apart on the prepared sheets. Bake until the cookies are golden brown around the edges — about 10-12 minutes. Cool the cookies on a wire rack.
5. To make the glaze, stir together the powdered sugar, zest, 1/4 cup orange juice, and salt. If needed, add more juice, a teaspoon at a time, until the glaze has a flowing consistency. Spoon a few teaspoons of the glaze onto each cookie.