Tag Archives: cookies

Nutella-Filled Shortbread Cookies

2 Sep

Yay! My first blog entry! Okay, for those who have not read my sister’s previous post, she is off to China and can’t maintain the blog while she is gone so she decided to let me (her sister) manage it until she gets back so I hope you guys enjoy my first entry and the rest that will come at a different time. So here it goes:

The ingredients for Nutella-Filled Shortbread Cookies are:

1 1/2 cups of flour (they recommend all purpose but any kind works)

1/2 cup cornstarch

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 sticks of butter, softened–they say unsalted but I used salted and it was fine

1/3 cups sugar

3 large egg yolks

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Nutella (Use as much as you want for each cookie)


1) Preheat the oven to 325 degrees and line however many baking sheets you personally need with parchment paper (or if you’re me and you ran out you would use non-stick spray).

2) Mix the flour, baking powder, cornstarch, and salt into a bowl and set it aside.


3) Using a hand-held mixer or a stand mixer, cream the butter so it is fluffy like so:

4) Add the sugar and beat until smooth. Then add the egg yolks and vanilla and mix until smooth.

5) Mix in the flour mixture 1 cup at a time.


6) Okay, the dough may be kind of sticky so cover your hands in flour. Then take 1-2 tablespoons of dough and roll it into a ball and flatten it out. Then, take 1 1/2 teaspoons of nutella and fold the dough to cover all the nutella. Mine look ugly because I don’t know how to fold anything….


7)  Put in the oven for 14-18 minutes.


8) Now you have nutella-filled shortbread. Sorry if my pictures aren’t fantastic quality, I’m still getting the hang of it.

I hope you enjoyed guys and I’ll post again next weekend probably.


Salty Chocolate Cookies

16 Aug




18 days to go and it doesn’t feel any more like it’s really happening than it did a year ago.

I’m going to make a list of things I want to do, things that I’ll miss, before I leave for Beijing.  Things like

  • Spend as much time on the Highline as possible
  • Eat oysters at P.J. Clarke’s with my dad
  • See American movies in American theaters (which I’m doing tonight, so hurray)
  • Eat a lot of tacos
  • A lot of tacos
  • And peanut butter.  Just load up on that stuff.
  • Bike to Manhattan at least one more time
  • Go to museums (like the Whitney!  I’ve still never been.  I’m such a bad art history student)
  • Read books that are not about China
  • Have Magnolia’s banana bread pudding (also might do this tonight!)

Okay, a lot of it is food-related, but a lot of my life is food-related, so there you go.  Also, something NOT to do–eat Chinese food!  I swear to god, I eat so much of it, and logically I know that I should eat things I CAN’T get in China…  But Chinese is my favorite.

I’ll work on it…

I also have a ton of video to edit, but that’s a totally different story and one that we will not be talking about anytime soon.

But okay, let’s talk about cookies, then!  These are, in terms of chocolate levels, pretty obscene.  You’ve go melted chocolate AND cocoa powder, so even though the dough needs to be refrigerated, they’re really chocolatey and delicious (I don’t really like refrigerated dough; it always seems bland).

The recipe is (adapted not even a little bit) from Butter Me Up Brooklyn, which is a really excellent blog that I highly recommend.  She has some really creative recipes that I want to try one day when I’m not feeling horrifically lazy.



  • 3.5 oz bittersweet chocolate (I may have used semisweet…)
  • 1 1/4 cups flour
  • 1/4 cup + 2 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 4 tbsp butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/4 cup coarse sugar or sprinkles
  • sea salt for sprinkling


Chop the chocolate and melt it in a double boiler of your own fashioning over low heat.



Meanwhile, combine the flour, baking powder, cocoa, and salt in a small bowl and set aside.

Cream the butter and sugar in a large bowl until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.  Beat in the egg and vanilla until well-combined.  Stir in the melted chocolate completely and then the flour mixture.  BMUB warns that the dough will be stiff, so don’t be afraid to get your hands in there to thoroughly combine the flour.

Divide the dough in two and form into logs about 1 1/2 inches in diameter.  Wrap the logs in parchment paper and refrigerate for an hour or freeze for half an hour.

Once they’ve chilled sufficiently, unwrap them and roll them around in the coarse sugar/sprinkles.  I had trouble getting it to stick, so I pretty much rubbed the sprinkles onto the logs, which sort of worked.



Slice at 1/2 inch intervals and place them on cookie sheets.  You can space them pretty close together since they don’t really expand much.  Sprinkle with sea salt and bake at 350 for 6 minutes, until the tops begin to crack.



I have been informed that they are particularly delicious when crumbled into ice cream, so there’s an idea.  Also, they stay good for a ridiculously long time in an airtight container (not that they’ll be lying around for very long!  Just in case.)


I finally finished putting all of my photos from my year-long photography challenge on they’re own website, so you can check that out here if you’re so inclined.

Today’s book recommendation is brought to you by a mysterious coincidence of the universe.  I was looking up books about the Peace Corps in my library’s database (as you do) and found one by a woman named Hilary Liftin co-authored with… Kate Montgomery.  (That is my name, if you don’t know.)  The book, Dear Exile, is a collection of letters between the two women from when Kate (!!!) was in Kenya with the Peace Corps alongside her husband.

And okay, as far as Peace Corps books go, it’s pretty disappointing.  In the end, Kate and her husband didn’t seem to accomplish much since the first place they went had such toxic water they had to be pulled out and the second place they went devolved into horrific violence as the students went on strike to protest the abysmal conditions in which they lived and went to school.  On the one hand, it was a good reminder that not every Peace Corps experience results in the building of a giant water pump and a career lobbying for Peace Corps funding… but on the other I am 100% not recommending this book if you’re looking for something about the Peace Corps.

I’m recommending it because of the letters.  These two women are so incredibly close (it seems like) and it’s really wonderful to read about such a lovely friendship.  They’re also really funny and touching (Hilary dates idiots, commutes super long distance, has a mysterious job that never does get described, looks for an apartment, deals with crazy neighbors, etc., and who can’t relate to at least half of that list), and it’s just an all-around solid read, good for the beach or what-have-you.

Off-the-Chart Ridiculously Great Chocolate Chip Cookies

1 Aug

I’m having a great food week.  I just finished an elaborate crêpe breakfast with my sister, I’m looking at a rack of chocolate cookies I made yesterday, and I’ve got homemade yoghurt congealing on the buffet.

Yesterday I made some amazing kimchi stir fry noodles and my mom made shrimp and papaya for dinner.

The day before that?  Eating out around the Lower East Side and the brilliant Italian place in my town.

And so in the spirit of good eating, I offer this chocolate chip cookie recipe to end all chocolate chip cookie recipes.  Seriously.  I’ve compiled a lot of chocolate chip cookie recipes, so I like to think I’m speaking with some authority here.

Naturally, we all have Top With Cinnamon to thank.  She created these ridiculous cookies using basil + verbena infused brown butter.  I can only imagine.  How fucking epic that must taste.

I had neither basil nor verbena, but I did have chili pepper.  I am firm believer that everything in the world can be improved with the addition of some kind of chili.


(Side note: I have Mexican Chili Chocolate ice cream, which is AMAZING, further supporting this theory of the power of the chili.)

If you don’t like spicy food you will definitely still like this cookie.  Trust me.  It doesn’t taste like chili.  It just has this subtle heat, a hint of spice, that make the dough that much better than your average, blasé, sugary cookie dough.  It’s divine.  Just have faith.


And so, with minor adaptation from the lovely TWC, I give you chili-pepper-infused brown butter chocolate chip cookies.


  • 1/4-1/2 tsp chili powder
  • 10 tbsp butter, cubed
  • 1 3/4 cup flour
  • 3/4 tsp baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup + 3 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 egg
  • chocolate chips; I don’t like to include measurements because I think it’s largely a matter of taste and also I have a tendency to use entire bags oops


In a small saucepan, brown the butter with the chili pepper.  You’ll know it’s browned when it starts to foam and smell nutty and delicious, which should happen fairly soon after the butter completely melts.  BE CAREFUL because it goes from brown to burnt very quickly.  As soon as it’s browned, pour into a small bowl and set aside.

While the butter is browning, combine the flour, baking powder and soda, both sugars, and the salt in a large bowl.  When the butter has cooled, pour into the flour mixture and mix until well-combined.  Mix in the egg and then the chocolate chips.


TWC warns not to stir for too long.



With a 1/4 cup measuring spoon, scoop the cookie dough onto prepared baking sheets.  Interestingly TWC is adamant about using a spoon with a 1/4 cup measure.


Apparently she has experimented with size and found a noticeable advantage to the 1/4 cup.  Trust.


Space the cookies 3 inches apart and refrigerate for at least one hour.

Bake at 400 degrees for 8-12 minutes, or until golden brown.




I now have whole slew of books to recommend in the coming weeks (I have a lot of recipes to share, so get doubly excited), but I’ll start with a really excellent I read while in Rhode Island.

Shark’s Fin and Sichuan Pepper is Fuchsia Dunlop’s memoirs of eating around China, beginning with her introduction to China and Chinese cooking in Chengdu, Sichuan and following her food-writing career to Hunan, Hong Kong, Fujian, Beijing, and other provinces and places.  She’s had a really remarkable career, exposing the world to so many previously unknown parts of various Chinese cuisines.  She’s fearless and bold, eating literally anything that can be eaten and forging a path through as many Chinese kitchens as she can.  Her memoirs are really lovely and funny and bizarre and completely absorbing.

My favorite thing about this book is that, while it’s about Chinese cooking and Dunlop’s life, it doesn’t ignore politics and social issues, it addresses environmental concerns that come hand-in-hand with Chinese haute cuisine, and it shows (I think) the ever-present danger to foreigners of forgetting that they are not, in fact, actually Chinese.  If you have any interest in China, culinary anthropology, or seriously crazy but endearing stories, you should read this.

Lemon Cookies

30 May

It’s been thunderstorming for days here, which never ceases to be exciting.  I ran to the library the other night to pick up research material in the middle of the wildest storm I’ve witnessed as a sentient human being (I was a baby when I experienced a tornado down south), jumping in all of the puddles on the way back and miraculously not damaging any of the books.  And today it’s been an odd mix of forebodingly cloudy and warm and sunny.  I have a pre-occupation with weather.  Most people think of it as a painful subject of small talk, but I could talk about the weather for… a really long time.

But I won’t!  Instead I will talk about lemon cookies.  I made these cookies because I had sour cream left over from the chocolate sour cream bread I wrote about in my last post, though they only use 1/4 cup.  I got the recipe from the inestimable Chow Hound, in particular, pamd’s answer to this topic.



  • 1 stick butter (1/2 cup)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 1 egg
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp lemon zest


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt.

In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar for about 3 minutes, until light and fluffy.



Add the sour cream and egg, beating until well combined.  Mix in the dry ingredients until combined, and then stir in the zest.



Drop by the teaspoonful onto greased baking sheets (or whatever you do with your baking sheets), spacing the cookies about an 1 in-1 1/2 in. apart.  The original recipe says to bake them for 20 minutes, but I found they were done in ten.  These cookies are soft and fluffy, so they’ll be done as soon as they start to brown on the edges even if they look raw in the middle.



Okay, so the reason I didn’t want to recommend any of the Chinese fiction I’ve read is because I didn’t care for it overwhelmingly.  It was good enough that I finished the books in 2 days or fewer, but they speak to this problem I have with contemporary Chinese fiction.  A lot of it is very crass and bleak and doesn’t have very strong characterization.  A lot of it is historical, as well, taking place in the Cultural Revolution most frequently.

I absolutely understand why, it’s just not something I’m really into.  Actually, Sinica, over on Pop-Up Chinese did an excellent podcast on Mo Yan that touched on the problems I have, which were shared by one of the guests on the program.  I tend to prefer more cosmopolitan fiction.  I definitely don’t want to say more “refined”… but I like books that deal more with contemporary city folk like myself rather than people in the countryside, which is what a lot of Chinese writers write about for obvious reasons.  I think writers like Yu Hua and Mo Yan are very talented and write beautiful books that I tend to tear through when I have the time, but I prefer Japanese writers on the whole because of how they write and the people they write about.

That said, I love Guo Xiaolu, who is obviously Chinese, and I recently discovered Ying Hong, who I think is fabulous.  I read her book Summer of Betrayal, which is about a young female poet during the Tiananmen Square massacre and in the months following.  Her characters were really strong and wonderful, and her main character went through such a delicately written and beautifully paced transformation.  I really haven’t seen another writer whose characters grow so easily and naturally.  The book is very political in a lot of ways, but the characters don’t get overshadowed by events.  If you can find it (I’ve had to request her other books through WorldCat), then I highly recommend it.  I’m about to start her short story collection of gay and lesbian fiction and have high hopes indeed.

Lebkuchen (German Gingerbread)

23 Dec

I’ve been away, I know.  I had a houseguest, and then I went to Ohio for my cousin’s wedding, and I haven’t baked much since we last encountered one another on whatever platform you favor.  I myself have been living on my iPad, which finally has Chrome and Tumblr apps that are quite lovely.  What a rockin’ device.

So the week or two in review?

Two of my wonderful friends and I went carolling on the Subway



and made $34!  We weren’t even trying to collect any money.  So we got waffels at Wafel and Dinges, and split the bounty three ways for optimal dinges-tasting.



Annnd a lot of city adventures which I will not recount to you right now because you are probably intrigued by this strange word in this post’s title that I claim to mean gingerbread.


My grandmother was German, so my mom grew up having German foods and desserts on occasion, including this gingerbread.  I’ve been making it since I was a wee sprog–the page in the cookbook is caked with flour and sticky with molasses, and clouds of powdered sugar float up when you thumb through.  I don’t bother with other gingerbread because this is so good.  It’s a lot more bitter than regular gingerbread, so you absolutely must dip them in chocolate or shake powdered sugar onto them.  I’m experimenting with honey glaze at the mo.

I know.  You’re thinking, “If I HAVE to dip stuff in chocolate….”

Sacrifices must be made.


You can roll the dough into a log and cut of slices, or roll it out into a big round flatness and cookie cutter it to ribbons, as I did.  Which is obviously more fun, but your dough, your life.


  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, unsalted
  • 2/3 firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1/3 cup molasses, plus more as needed
  • 3 1/2 cups self-rising flour
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • I think I threw in a pinch of cardamom, who knows, it can’t hurt

This recipe, by the way, is from a book entitled Cookies, by Hilaire Walden, which we have had forever.

So the recipe:



Beat together the butter and sugar until fluffy, about 2-3 minutes.

Add the egg and the molasses…




and beat until well-combined.



Throw the dry ingredients together into a medium bowl.



Sift all of that into the molasses mixture.



I hate sifting.  I don’t know why.  It just bugs me.

Anyway, stir together until combined, then turn dough over and knead to fully incorporate all the ingredients.  I always always always end up with crumbly dough, so I add molasses until it adheres enough to mold.  You really can’t damage this stuff by adding half a jar of molasses, trust me.



So roll that into a cute little ball, wrap it in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for half an hour.  Go paint your nails, refresh Tumblr, take pictures of sandwiches, or make a pillow fort.  Whatever you want to do.

Now come back.  Here, you can roll out the dough into a log, cut off slices, and refrigerate those for 30 more minutes.  OR you can roll it out for cookie cutter-ing.



Cut cookies out, like you do, and transfer to non-stick or greased baking sheets.



Refrigerate for another half hour, and pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees.

When they’re done fridging out, bake for about 8-10 minutes.  If you went the cookie cutter route, you should probably underbake them a bit unless you like crunchy cookies.



So now you dip them in chocolate.  I was going to do that, but my chocolate seized, so there went that plan.  Instead, I put them in a bag with powdered sugar and tossed them around a bit.  Don’t shake them, because they’re a bit fragile (well, the bees were)–just turn them over and over in the bag until evenly coated.



And how cute is that?  Especially the bees!  They actually sell bee cookie cutters at Sur la Table.  I was so excited.  They sell other shapes too, but so what.


I’m Team of Rivals, but I’m not ready to review that, so instead allow me to direct your attention to a magazine that I have long-loved.

I’ve been subscribed to Wired for a few years now, first enjoying getting the print edition in the mail, and now happily downloading the iPad issue every month.  It’s still a great print magazine because it is a great magazine, period.  If you’ve never read a copy, the best way I can describe it is to say that it’s full of things you could never imagine you’d be interested in, but that you will dog ear and highlight and circle for later Googling.  I had no idea what a pupfish was or why I should care about all 57 of them… until yesterday when I read an article on them in the November issue.  Likewise, I learned about the patent wars and patent trolls, epic scavenger hunts, and secret society codices.  They do really excellent product reviews, too, which is helpful when you’re trying to buy something like a camera and the best criterion you can come up with is… something that takes pictures.

It’s doubly excellent if you have an iPad, because they embed a lot of cool stuff in the pages like videos of people using The Most Dangerous Object in the Office This Month, downloads of sample chapters from books they review, interviews of innovators and inventors featured in the magazine, and moving graphics that are just nifty.

The best thing about the magazine, though, is that it’s so much fun.  Never a dull page.

Anyway, you should subscribe, you will love the hell out of it as I do, I promise.

Brown Sugar Cookies

20 Jun

Hello, it’s been a while.

There’s no real reason.  I could say studying for finals, and I could say settling in back home for summer break, but that’s not really true.  It’s just been one of those things…

But maybe a little goal for the summer will be keeping up with this, just to be writing something.  In the past year, I’ve very much forgotten that I once wanted to be a writer.  (I say once like it was years ago, like I’m very old and have accrued much wisdom.  I just got done being a freshman, so that’s not true either.)  And I’ve been thinking about it, writing I mean, a lot lately because of Peter Hessler.

I read Hessler’s Country Driving, which is about the various road trips he took across China while he was living there.  It was on a list I have of books about China.  None of his other books is on the list, but I couldn’t find any other books that are in Barnes and Noble when I was looking for something to read on the drive from Chicago to New York.  So I got River Towns, by Hessler.  And it made me start thinking about how I was a Very Promising Writer in high school, and people used to joke that they wanted me to sign something so they would have it when I was very famous.

And then I found political science and fell deeply in love with foreign policy (savor that sentence–I’ll bet you anything you’ll never see anything like it again).  But now I’m thinking about writing again.  I don’t think I like writing fiction, so maybe this blog will be something more than I had planned…

We shall see.

In the meantime:

Recipe post!

Brown Sugar Cookies, from Joy the Baker


  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 1/2 stick butter, softened
  • 1 1/4 cups dark brown sugar
  • 1 large egg

Let’s do this:

Sift your dry ingredients, minus the brown sugar.  Or don’t.  I don’t usually sift anything unless a recipe says SIFT OR ELSE OH MY GOD, which they usually don’t.  Sifting isn’t entirely necessary here.

Beat the butter and sugar together until fluffy, for about 3-5 minutes.  Do not eat this.  Do not eat all of it, anyway.  I find I’ve developed this problem with sugar and butter where I eat it.  It’s disgusting, I know, but I can’t seem to stop myself.  I was lactose intolerant for a long time, too, so you would think I would have some residual fear of butter.  Nope.

Beat in the egg until well-combined.

Add the dry ingredients all at once and beat until just combined.

Mix by hand until all the flour disappears.

Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.  DON’T WORRY.  These are not really refrigerator cookies.  The dough just needs to chill for a bit.

I actually don’t know if you were worried.  I was, when I saw that part of the recipe, simply because I always mess up any cookie with dough that needs refrigeration.  I don’t know.  Winter, summer, doesn’t matter, I fuck it up.

My dough always gets gummy and loses shape, or doesn’t roll into a proper log in the first place…  And now I am not brave enough to tackle such recipes.  But fear not, for this is not one of them.

Once you’ve refrigerated those, you can go ahead and form them into balls about an inch in diameter, or a teeny bit smaller.  Then, roll them in sugar and bake at 350 degrees for 10 to 12 minutes.

These cookies are particularly well-suited for making ice cream sandwiches, by the way.

Because of the spices involved, they taste great with mocha/coffee ice cream.  That is possibly because I like spicy coffee, but who doesn’t, really.

Don’t say you don’t.  Please.

But I suspect these would taste great with a nice simple vanilla as well.  Maybe mint, but that might be stretching it.

For best effect, consume often.  At least after every meal, and yes, that includes breakfast.  Come on, you may think that sounds indulgent, but think about it.

It’s June, quickly melting into July, which will slowly bake into a hearty August…  The mornings are still cool enough that you can and should burrow into a sweater as you stand at the counter watching through a film of sleepy tears as your coffee/double-shot espresso brews.  You know it will get hot later though, and you can’t wait to shed your fleecy layers and sit in the sun and feel your skin roast slowly…

Unless you don’t like tanning, in which case, shade is very nice too.

But you know, you just know, that it will get hot later, hot like the coffee you’re probably finally holding very close to your face as though you can absorb what you’re not immediately drinking through osmosis.  And what goes great with coffee?  Ice cream, that’s what.  And since it’s time for breakfast, you need a nice anchoring substance, too, which is where these cookies come in.

Have I convinced you?

I hope so.  You’ll thank me, even if you silently curse me as you gain twenty pounds from eating the entire batch by yourself.  Shhh, it’s okay.  Just eat.  The cookie.  (Remember that movie?  Quality stuff.)

These cookies are also best enjoyed by booting up Spotify and listening to The Fox and the Monk, by John Smith, who is an A+ singer that I had the great fortune of seeing this past Friday with Joe Henry and Lisa Hannigan.  You’ll thank me for that, too.

M&M Sugar Cookies

27 May

I haven’t forgotten about the rest of Milwaukee.  Fear not.

But yesterday, my roommate and I made M&M sugar cookies, and I wanted to share them with you all.

Be warned: these cookies are pretty much just butter.  It’s a little disgusting, and you will fully nauseate yourself after only a couple of them.  But they are so worth it.  (Come on, I know you’re sitting there making faces at the idea, but secretly you want this.  You know you do.)

The recipe comes from one of my favorite bakeries in New York, Milk and Cookies.  It’s a very small place, and we found it by accident wandering around one day.  The cookies, however, are famous enough that the bakery merits a place on tours of the city.  Annoying when you’re sitting in there trying to enjoy your cookies, but it’s awesome that they are so well-loved.  Also, it is located on a street called–I kid you not-Cherry Lane.  Yes really.

So here we go:


  • 3 cups flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1 1/2 cups butter (oh yeah, there it is)
  • 1/4 cups (super)fine sugar (we just used regular old organic cane)
  • 2 large egg yolks (okay.  okay.  The moment I typed that was the moment I realized it only said “yolks”.  Shit.  Okay.  That explains a lot).
  • 2 tsp vanilla (skipped that, as usual)
  • 2 tbsp milk
  • Handful of sugar, mixed with cinnamon and nutmeg
  • 1 metric fuck ton of M&Ms, or your candy of choice

As I opened my recipe book to the right page, I flipped past pages caked with flour, thumbing a smear of sugar and butter mixture that found its way onto the edge of the pages. Far from being upset about messing up my book, I’m delighted that I’m finding the opportunities to use it.  Gross stains a mark of achievement in baking.  (And possibly other things, but you know what, don’t think about that.)


Combine flour, baking soda, and salt and set aside.

Beat the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.  Try to contain yourself and eat only a little of this.  If you do indulge, try not to hate yourself afterwards.

Add the yolks (ah, key word, oops) one at a time, making sure each addition is thoroughly combined.  At the vanilla and beat for a while longer.

Add half the flour, then the milk, and then the rest of the flour.  Beat until the ingredients are just combined, and while the dough is still streaky, stir in the M&Ms and lick the beaters thoroughly.

Et voilà:

Cover the dough tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least an hour.  The book says you can refrigerate it for up to three days, but why wait that long?

When ready to bake, break out the delicious sugar and spice mixture.

Form the dough into small-ish balls (the book says 1 1/2 in diameter) and roll them around in the sugary goodness.

Bake for about ten minutes, or until golden brown around the edges.

Sorry, no picture of the finished product!  But trust me, these are delicious cookies.  Anything that can claim origins in Milk and Cookies is going to overwhelm you in sugary goodness.  Trust me.  And if worst comes to worst, foist them onto other people so you feel less guilty about consuming what is essentially, as Haley put it, a mountain of butter and M&Ms.  (That’s what we did, and it sort of worked.)

This coming weekend: you wouldn’t even believe what we’re planning for this weekend, so I’ll just let it be the Surprise That Rocks Your Face Off.