Wednesday, December 16, 2009

cookie planning

Last year, staying at home for the holidays, I had an ambitious baking schedule.  I baked a lot, but I don't remember making Faith's Grandma's cookies OR the Cookie Store Cat cookies.  And I don't think I'll get there this year either.  (Perhaps they will be a New Year's Resolution.)  The problem with my plan is that I make it.  I then make the mistake of asking everyone in the family what they want.  Pook: gingerbread house (check).   Bug:  Swedish Shortbread (check).  CD: Fruitcake Cookies- I've chopped and mixed all the dried fruit for them (partial check).  Obligation:  Pretzels for teachers and friends (check x 6 bags of Hershey's kisses, various flavors, Mint Truffle winning hands down).  And for me, we'll make Nutmeg Christmas Cutout cookies at my mom's on Dec. 23, (check?).  I'm just not insane (enough) to take on any others. 

I have a small kitchen.  (Have I whined about that before?)  I have kids. (Yeah, I know I've already whined about that.)  While I can make time to bake cookies (no whining) it gets hard to let the kids help.  I mixed up the shortbread dough while they were at school yesterday, and I mixed the dried fruits together today, but I'm trying to save the actual hands-on, lick-your-fingers, sample-a-few portions of the tasks for late afternoon after the boys get home from school and after homework is done.

Today I picked Bug up at 2:20 for a piano lesson.  We picked Pook up at 3:20 from Chess Club.  He had very little homework, but I wanted him to work without the distraction of cookie baking going on next to him.  I gave up at 4:00 and started slicing shortbread cookies (and his homework was quickly finished!).  Pook and Bug took turns sprinkling powdered sugar "snow" on them when they came out hot from the oven.  In my tiny oven (have I whined about that?) I can only bake one cookie sheet at a time, so we had four batches to bake, at 8-10 minutes a batch.  (And many discussions about how much dough and cookies they could eat.)  Suddenly, I realized that I needed to get dinner started if I wanted to have the potato leek soup I'd planned.  With powdered sugar flying right next to me, I started washing leeks.

CD and I ate a wonderful Valentine's Dinner once (Before Children) at a Moroccan restaurant.  Between sets of belly dancing, we nibbled foods with our fingers.  One of them was meat and veggies sprinkled with powdered sugar.  It was actually good, but I'm not interested in repeating the concept tonight.  Must keep leeks and powdered sugar separate!


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