Peanut Butter Chocolate No-Bake Cookies

Photo of Peanut Butter Chocolate No-Bake Cookies on a baking sheet before they are set.

Mandolin Rain
We have a number of mandolins in our house. Some of them make beautiful music (well, if you’re into that kind of music. It’s all relative.). Two of them will slice potatoes so thin that the gratin you’re making will melt in your mouth and make you cry. Those two reside in the kitchen and one of them did damage to my finger Sunday night.

I will spare you the details. But, suffice it to say, after a trip to Urgent Care and a whole lot of gauze, I will be avoiding anything with a hint of danger in the kitchen for the foreseeable future. There will be no chopping, dicing, and certainly no slicing. There WILL be a glass of wine while I sit on the couch because I am also using this moment to avoid anything hot like an oven, the grill, or the open flame of my stove.

In short, the family is just going to have to fend for themselves for a bit. It will be good for them. Nothing like cereal and mac and cheese for a few nights to give them perspective on the dangers I face walking into the kitchen each night to make them dinner. My husband is considering a suit of chain mail because, sadly, this is not the first time something like this has happened and it will most likely not be the last because I am that person. The one who always manages to injure themselves in sometimes strange, but never surprising, ways.

And, as someone who has actually been thrown from a horse (more than once I might add) you do in fact need to get back on and try again. So, give me a week and I will be back at it. Although, I am considering a chain mail glove like our butchers have. I refuse to give up that gratin…

Truthfully, I am not going to pull myself completely out of the game—mainly because I want to make these beauties below. They are no-bake but they do require the use of the stove. I’m going to take the risk. After the week I have had, I’m worth it!

There are hundreds of versions of these Peanut Butter Chocolate No-Bake Cookies available online. I like this one from Food Network.

Peanut Butter Chocolate No-Bake Cookies Recipe
Adapted from The Food Network
Yields about five dozen cookies

These cookies begin on the stovetop and are set in the fridge. They are easy to make and yield a lot of cookies. It would be easy to substitute out the milk and butter to make a vegan version. And, you can always swap out the peanut butter for a nut butter of your choice. Plus, they are gluten-free. Read more…

Pretzel & Guinness Cookie Bars

Photo of Pretzel & Guinness Cookie Bars

Fall Kickoff
We took Dude #1 back to school this past weekend. And, we moved him into a new apartment that is a major upgrade from his dorm. He is extremely excited—most likely because this will be the first time that he has had a room to himself. Ever. Such is the fate of a twin.

It’s always fun to be on campus when school starts because the energy is off the charts. They may not be excited about that four-hour chem lab, but everyone seems happy to be back together and, of course, the beginning of the school year means school sports which, in the fall, means football.

The college football season kicks off (see what I did there?) this weekend with a handful of games which for those of you, like my boys who have been anxiously awaiting the start of college football, should be most welcome despite the matchups not being that great. Next weekend will be way more entertaining…

I recommend making a batch of these Pretzel & Guinness Cookie Bars if you are so inclined. Everything about them screams football tailgate. Beer? Check. Pretzels? Check. Convenient and portable bar form? Also, check. Plus, they are pretty yummy!

Pretzel & Guinness Cookie Bars
Adapted from Cookies: The New Classics by Jesse Szewczyk
Yields about 24 bars Read more…

Earl Grey Shortbread Cookies

Photo of Earl Grey Shortbread Cookies with a cup of tea

What’s The Tea?
I lived in the Pacific Northwest during the early 90s when the Starbucks mania was just getting rolling. And, I embraced it with abandon. To say I like my coffee would be an understatement. It is a daily routine that I find non-negotiable to start my day on a good note. The days when it doesn’t happen are rough…for everyone. My favorite part of camping, when we go camping, is the ritual of making campsite coffee. And, frankly, coffee never tastes as good as it does at the campsite.

However, if my back was to the wall and I had to make a life-or-death choice between coffee or tea, I would pick tea. Every time.

I love my coffee, yes. But I can’t drink a lot of it. I have one coffee a day. Two at the max. Why? Because the way I take my coffee is not conducive to good health. I like my coffee with quite a bit of cream. 2% doesn’t cut it. And while I like my coffee sweet, I do not like it super sweet. And, I do like it with a bit of vanilla flavor. In other words, my coffee is high-maintenance.

My tea is a different story…

I will drink my coffee in the morning. And, for the rest of the day, If I am not drinking water, I am drinking tea. I like it hot. I like it iced. I like it black, and I like it green. I like it freshly steeped or right out of the bottle.

What don’t I like? Sugar. I do not like sweet tea which is fortunate because it makes it easy to grab a mug of hot water, toss in my favorite bag of tea, and get on with my afternoon. Full disclosure, most of the time I am drinking a decaf version of tea or something herbal. Given the amount of tea I drink, if I always drank high-octane tea, I would be a jittery maniac.

Earl Grey is my tea of choice either way. I blame my grandmother. She always had a cup of Earl Grey with a slice of lemon at night. No sugar. I guess that is where I got hooked. Although, I do leave out the lemon. I’d rather have a cookie or two than the lemon. But, that’s just me. But, if you can combine all three into a convenient package like these, so much the better!

Earl Grey Shortbread Cookies Recipe
Adapted from Sugar and Soul
Yields 36 cookies

Crisp and buttery, these Earl Grey Shortbread Cookies have just five ingredients plus an easy lemon glaze. They are great for parties, tea time, and they make a delicious snack. And, The longer these cookies sit, the more intense the flavor will become. Read more…

Peach Crumble Bars

Just Peachy
I have a problem. A peachy problem—my peach cup runneth over. And, now I have to figure out ways to use or preserve the peaches, so they don’t go to waste.

The obvious solutions of eating them as a snack, slicing them up for the freezer, as well as handing them out to friends have already happened. I have made a cobbler or three. And, this weekend I will be canning some of the peaches in light syrup. I might also be making ice cream. But there are still some left…and more on the tree.

What to do with the leftovers? Sure, I could make a pie. But, the thought kind of makes me tired. I’m thinking this situation screams for a bar cookie—Peach Crumble Bars. I figure if it can be done with apple pie and pecan pie, why not peaches?

Peach Crumble Bars Recipe
Adapted from Pastry & Beyond
Yields 16 bars Read more…