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    Entries in gimme some sugar baby (25)

    Tuesday
    Apr192011

    Carrot Spam (not what it sounds like)

    A few weeks ago I signed up for a veggie delivery service. Organic and / or local veggies delivered right to my door at the same time every week. Sounded pretty convenient and the amounts seemed like a week's worth, so I thought I'd give it a shot. Besides, since I buy my meat at the butcher once a month, and bread at the bakery that's on the way home from work... Veggies was really the only grocery shopping I had left. One less thing for me to do and laziness reigns supreme!

    In theory, this system is a good one, but in practice I'm finding that it just doesn't work for me. Here's what was in this week's box:

    Most of the fruit is super-ripe when it arrives, so I end up eating half of it on the day it's delivered - kiwi, bananas and melon for dinner. Really freaking tasty kiwis, but nothing left to take in my lunches since I ate the apples and orange on the weekend. That means shopping. This is not conforming to my plan of ultimate laziness.

    Plus, I'm not a fan of potatoes which are on the menu every week. Yes, they let me do substitutions but they rarely "substitute", they just increase the amounts of the things already in the box. (I felt kinda like a picky kid as I was writing out my "veggies I don't like" list). So, last week, because I had potatoes on the list, I got an extra helping of carrots. Just like the week before.

    I'm being spammed with carrots.

    I don't mind carrots, I just can't eat 2 pounds of them every week.

    So, I've made carrot soup, and I'm going to make carrot-laden salad rolls tomorrow. I may even resort to putting grated carrots in mac & cheese. What? It's all orange. I'm really running out of ideas here.

    Fortunately, exam season is almost over. Work has started to ramp up, and that means my co-workers have been making pastry demands.

    Last summer, I indulged my baking habit on a weekly basis and foisted the results on the guys in the construction trailer. When I started running out of ideas, I started baking to order (grown men who want cookies with gumdrops in them, srsly). This created a strange sense of ... entitlement amongst my coworkers. I've been hounded for the last two weeks, not only about when I'm going to be available full time, but also when I'm going to give them some sugar....

    (um, if you don't get that joke, you really need to watch Army of Darkness. And it's prequels, Evil Dead and Evil Dead 2 - which is really just Evil Dead with a bigger budget. But srsly watch them, they are fucking awesome movies. Genius.)

    So, with a construction trailer full of guys who want sugar, and a fridge full of carrots, I came up with this:

    Carrot Chocolate Chip Cookies

    What you need:

    1-1/2 cups grated carrots
    1/4 c oil
    1 egg
    3/4 cup sugar
    1-1/2 tsp vanilla
    1-1/2 tsp cinnamon
    1 tsp baking soda
    1-1/2 cups flour
    ~1 cup chocolate chips (really, who measures those?)

    What you gotta do:

    Peel and grate the carrots. I used my food processor because, well, I'm lazy. Plus, I'm clumsy and likely to grate my fingertips into the bowl. Food processors have safety features for klutzes like me.

    Start with the carrots in a large bowl.

    Add the oil and mix.

    Add the egg and mix.

    Add the sugar and mix.

    Add the cinnamon and vanilla and mix. (Ha! Bet you thought I was just going to say cinnamon)

    Now the baking soda. Don't forget to mix!

    And finally the flour.

    It's going to feel like you've got way too much flour and you'll think it'll never mix in.

    But it will. Trust me.

    Drop by spoonful onto a cookie sheet. You should get just about 3 dozen.

    Bake at 375 for about 12 - 14 minutes. Cool on a rack.



    Now, you could stop here if you feel like it. These are some tasty little morsels as they are.

    Or you could decorate them! Make them pretty!

    Melt ~1/2 c white chocolate chips over warm water, or in the microwave for 1 minute on half power.

    I wish I could have managed some pictures of the decorating process, but it's hard enough to take a picture as I'm pouring baking soda into the bowl. Drizzling melted chocolate decoratively with a fork while focussing with the camera in the other hand... guaranteed chocolate in places you do not want to wash chocolate off of.

    So, you'll have to make do with my amazing instructions instead.

    With a fork, scoop up a bit of melted chocolate. Hold the fork upright (chocolate side down) and gently flick it back and forth over top of the cookies. Gently. Cleaning white chocolate off of white kitchen walls is not as easy as it sounds. Do the same thing but 90 degrees in the other direction so you get a bit of cross hatching. Don't worry if it looks a little blobby in places and thin in others. These are misshapen little mounds of cookie, a little asymmetry in the finishing touch is not out of place here.

    Oh yeah, if you line the cookie sheet with parchment, you won't have to wash it. And you can use the same parchment under the cooled cookies as you're drizzling.

    If it's getting late and you want to harden the chocolate so you can pack the cookies up and put them next to your steel toed boots by the door so you don't forget them, you can put them in the freezer for 5-10 minutes to harden the chocolate.

    So, that's what I did with one quarter of my carrot surplus. What do you suggest I do with the other pound and a half?

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