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    Entries in dirty dishes will be the death of me (28)

    Monday
    Apr012013

    It's almost cookie time

    Engineers are lazy.

    I'm not sure if you've seen the wiener dog and the tennis ball launcher, but that's the best example I've seen on the internet lately. People see it as so innovative and creative... dude invented a machine so he wouldn't have to throw a ball for the dog. Lazy as fuck.

    Lemme tell you, if someone hadn't already invented a dishwasher, I'd have a prototype hooked up to my sink right now.

    And when a prof gives tells me I have to do a 5 minute free form presentation on anything I want (as long as I can somehow tie it to the class material), I spend hours trying to figure out how I can do this without actually doing any work.

    Totally figured out how to have cookies be my schoolwork.

    Which covers off this week's blog post.

    Double lazy.

    Ginger-Orange Brown Sugar Cookies

    totally lazed out on the name too.

    • 1/2 c butter
    • 1 c brown sugar
    • 1 tsp fresh grated ginger
    • zest of one orange
    • 1 egg
    • 1/2 tsp vanilla
    • 1 tsp orange juice
    • 1 1/2 c flour
    • 1/4 tsp baking powder

    This is a bit of a variation on a typical sugar cookie. The brown sugar makes it a lot more caramelly, but also means you really have to watch them in the oven. Which you should preheat to 325. Lower temp for the brown sugar too.

    Cream the butter and sugar with the ginger and the orange zest.

    Beat in the egg and vanilla until it's light and fluffy and looks like it would make an awesome icing for a cake.

    Don't forget the oj.

    There was no baking powder in the picture. Dammit.

    The dry ingredients will turn this into a very soft dough. Very soft. Might be worth letting it chill in the fidge for an hour or so, but I was impatient so I started rolling it.

    If I was going to cut this into anything other than rectangles, I would have chilled it.

    But, rectangles. Easiest thing you can cut a cookie into. Lasy person's cookie shape. Only drop cookies are lazier, but I had a goal here so I had to cut them.

    And bake them. For barely 10 minutes.

    I really need an oven thermometer. I looked for one today, but all I could find were fridge thermometers. Fridge? Really? Have to admit, I've never worried about that temperature. Brown sugar cookies in a nearly antique oven with serious calibration issues, I worry about.

    Once they were cooled, I had to turn them into strain gauges.

    Yes, strain gauges.

     

    Yes, strain gauges. This is a school project remember.

    But from this angle, they look like scary monsters.

    The other way, and we have happy little music notes...

    A bit of melted chocolate in a small sammich bag goes a long way. But be careful about explosions.

    For another purpose, I'd say make these circles and put the chocolate around the edges. The bittersweet chocolate works really well with the zesty orange, and the fresh ginger (yeah, you could use dried, but seriously, try the fresh) gives the familiar warmth but with a sharpness that seems to lighten the usually warm and heavy spice.

     

     

    I'm going to have to make these again once I'm done school. Perfect for sharing at work.

    What's your favourite lazy way out of work?

     

    Monday
    Mar182013

    Pudding Cake

    Dessert. Old school.

    A lot of the "pudding" that I ate as a kid was not the typical custardy stuff that most people think of. Pudding is a bit of an all purpose word for dessert in some parts of the world, and most of the ones I ate were usually baked, and looked kinda like big sweet dumplings served with a caramel-like sauce.

    And then there was the chocolate version. 

    Granted, my mom was a fan of all things boxed and so hers was a little more instant than this one. Hers also advertised that no bowl was needed. The packets were emptied and mixed right in the baking dish.

    No dishes! I'm in.

    Chocolate Pudding Cake

    Cake

    • 1 c flour
    • 5 tbsp cocoa
    • 2 tsp baking powder
    • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
    • 3/4 c brown sugar
    • 1/2 c milk
    • 1/2  butter, melted
    • 1 egg
    • 2 tsp vanilla

    Pudding

    • 3/4 c brown sugar
    • 5 tbsp cocoa
    • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
    • 1-1/2 c boiling water
    • 1 tsp vanilla

    Preheat the oven. Do it now. 350 degrees. (yes, I forgot this time)

    Since we're doing this with no bowls, get out a baking pan. My mom used to make the boxed stuff in a corningware casserole dish, so that's what I'm doing. A glass pan would also work nicely.

    Sift in the flour, cocoa, baking powder, and cinnamon.

    Sifting removes lumps not only from cocoa,

    but also from baking powder.

    Now, the sugar.

    Mix, mix, mix.

    Okay, so far, I've used the baking pan, and one dry measure, and a measuring spoon. Things used to measure dry stuff can be rinsed and put away and therefore don't count as dishes.

    Measure out half a cup of milk, and then drop in blobs of butter until the liquid level rises to 1 cup. This means you've added half a cup of butter.

    Microwave this for about 30 seconds until the butter is just about melted. It should finish melting as you stir it. You want it warm, but not hot, since you're going to add the egg to this. And the vanilla.

    I actually measured this time.

    Beat the liquid until the egg is nicely mixed in, then pour it into the dry stuff.

    Stir, stir, stir.

    You'll have a lovely dark, glossy, brownie-like batter.

    Okay, so since we mixed the liquid in the measuring cup, you're going to have to either get a bowl or wash the cup. I washed the cup, because all that's going into it now is dry stuff, which means I can just rinse it and put it away, and therefore it is washed only once and counts only as one dish.

    You have no idea how often I rationalize shit like this.

    Now, for the pudding part. More brown sugar, more cocoa, and more cinnamon. Mixed all together in the measuring cup

    and then sprinkled over top of the batter.

    DO NOT MIX.

    A cup and a half of boiling water, with a teaspoon of vanilla in it (wait, does this mean I have to wash it again?? dammit) gets poured over the back of the mixing spoon.

    This does two things: one, it removes momentum from the flow of the water so that it sprinkles gently over the batter and topping, and two, it rinses the spoon off.

    DO NOT MIX.

    I know it looks weird, and I know you want to mix it, and I know you don't believe me that this is going to work.

    Ha, totally did.

    30 minutes later it comes out of the oven looking like a pan of rich, dark brownies, with hot fudge sauce bubbling all around them.

    Freaky.

    Tasty.

    Chocolatey.

    Do you think I should try the caramel version?