My Life in a Blog-Shell Part #2

Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs (and Christmas Cookies)

Hello, my lovely blog readers! Are you ready for part two of my adventures while Lena is away?
So, for my supper Monday night I was in the mood for a little something Italian, and the meal of choice was Spaghetti and Meatballs. I didn’t have a recipe for meatballs in hand so Sunday night I did what any self-respecting, twenty-three year old would do in that situation- I googled Meatball recipes! After perusing suggestions from Rachel Ray, the Italian dood on the Food Network and others, I put together my very own version of a meatball recipe. Last night I fashioned this fabulous fare with some beef, ground crackers, crushed red pepper, garlic, basil, oregano, parsley, chopped jalapeno pepper, and a little Parmesan cheese, and prepared my little meatball wonders. The aroma as they were baking was simply tantalizing! My lack of tons of experience in the kitchen makes it a little difficult to do a bunch of things at once, so I thought I might have a minor catastrophe as I cooked the angel hair pasta, prepared the garlic bread and heated the sauce all at the same time, but it all came together beautifully, and there was no one was harmed in the making of this meal. For your viewing pleasure here is a picture of my full meal: angel hair pasta with sauce and Meatballs a la Sarah, spinach salad with Feta cheese, garlic bread, and a little sparkling grape juice.

So now, on to Christmas cookies! Growing up, there were several Christmas cookies that got made every year. New ones were added along the way that became family favorites, but there were those that were the tried and true essentials to the Christmas season. One such recipe was for Vanilla Butter Sugar cookies. So convenient to the have the main ingredients listed in the title! I decided that it would be fun to whip up a batch of these holiday morsels for the girls in my Bible study and others to enjoy.

First of all, do you know how hard it is to find cookie cutters in Wal-mart? Perhaps you would know exactly where to go, but I did not. I searched in the baking mix area where they have food coloring and sprinkles and such, then I checked out the baking utensil area, and finally the seasonal displays near the front. Nothing! I had almost given up , but I headed back to the craft area to get some glue, when, what did I see, not just one but several choices even in cookie cutters! They were located by the themed plates and party favors in the craft area. So, if you are ever in need of Christmas cookie cutters, try there first and save yourself from wandering all over Wal-mart!

As soon as I got home last night from work and errands, I began mixing up the dough for the cookies. You see, it has to chill in order to ease the experience of cutting out the shapes. I made my meatballs, which I have already described to you, while the dough got good and ready to be cut out into trees, snowmen and candy canes. Here is a snapshot of the mixing process.

After supper and the first round of dishes for the evening, I pulled the dough out of the fridge ready to create some festive cookies. In order to roll out the dough you must place it on a floured surface using a floured rolling pin and floured cookie cutters. In most things in life I consider myself pretty conservative, and I guess I am also conservative when it comes to flour. My first few attempts at cutting out stocking shapes ended up in some pretty sorry-looking socks, I’m afraid. I decided to throw caution to the wind and dumped out the flour with wild abandon. I also gave up on the rolling pin and went to using my fingers (don’t worry they were quite clean). Here are some pictures of the dough going through the cutting-out and shaping process.

After baking my cookies, it was time to frost and sprinkle! This is the fun part and normally at my house it’s a family affair. We fight over who gets the cool sprinkles or who has to frost. It takes a whole lot longer when you have to do it by yourself! But, I got it done, and they turned out pretty good, if I do say so myself. Here is the finished product.

After doing dishes for about the fourth time of the evening, it was only 9:30 p.m. and I was inspired. So, I looked in the pantry for what other Christmas concoction I could come up with. We had a bag of peanut butter cookie mix and so I thought I could make those and if we had some kisses or chocolate chips I could add those to the top for a little decoration. As I searched the candy jar, I discovered we only had one chocolate kiss, but we did have about 18 peanut butter cups! With the creative juices flowing, I checked out Lena’s pan supply and discovered she had a mini-muffin tin, and the complete idea hatched. I decided to make a version of a treat called Fudge puddles that my family often makes for the holidays. After calling my mother for affirmation of my plan, I whipped up the cookie dough and baked it in the muffin tin. As soon as it came out of the oven, I pushed the peanut butter cup down in the center of the dough, forming a yummy chocolaty, peanut butter treat. I also had some leftover dough to make regular cookies.

Well, you have probably heard enough about my capers in the kitchen. I don’t know what adventures I am going to tackle next, but I hope you will stay tuned! Over and out!


  1. Beth says:

    First of all, that all looks amazing! The cookies turned out super swell – thick with lots of frosting. That's the way to do it. 🙂
    Secondly, why did you not call moi? I'm crestfallen! (or not)
    You're doing a smashing job at making me itch-itch-itch to bake!!


  2. Chris says:

    Hey, Beth, it is perfectly okay that she called me.:-) Everything does look delicious by the way! Thanks for adding all of the pictures.


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