Monday, January 5, 2009

Sweet N' Healthy Night In

OK city girls…it’s time to pull those sweaters and shoes out of your oven and actually put it to use for baking! WOW that’s a concept a lot of my girlfriends haven’t heard in a while… But remember, a “girl’s night in” is all about indulgence. Pampering yourself is good to do every so often, and what better way to indulge than to nibble on something sweet & delicious?!”

Baking can be as fun and sexy as dressing up in high fashion. It’s all about the style and personality you bring to it. So here’s the game plan for baking up a tasty treat for your “girl’s night in”…

First you’ll probably need to make a quick trip to Whole Foods or your neighborhood grocery store for the following ingredients: (Again, feel free to ask each of your friends to pitch in to buy them. I’m sure they’ll be happy to once they know Chunky Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies with Fleur de Sel are on the menu!)

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened

1/2 cup peanut butter

1/2 cup sugar

1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons brown sugar

1 large egg

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 1/2 cups all-purpose unbleached flour

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 cup roasted, unsalted peanuts, coarsely chopped

1 cup bittersweet chocolate chips Fleur de Sel, to taste

**NOTE some people recommend substituting the following:
Use 1/2 cup of Ghee in place of butter
Use 1/4 cup of Splenda and 1/4 cup of sugar in place of 1/2 cup of sugar
An egg substitute may need to be added if dough is still a little dry.

How to Bake:
Preheat oven to 350°F. In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter, peanut butter, sugar, brown sugar, egg and vanilla extract. Whisk together the flour, baking soda and baking powder and add to peanut butter mixture, stirring to combine well. Stir in chopped peanuts and chocolate chips. Drop generous spoonfuls of dough onto an ungreased cookie sheet. Press each mound of dough with a fork to flatten slightly. Bake until bottom of cookies are golden brown, about 10 minutes. Remove from oven and sprinkle immediately with Fleur de Sel to taste. Let cookies cool on sheet for a few minutes before transferring to a cooling rack to cool completely. Recipe makes about 2 dozen cookies.

I know that most city kitchens are cramped and ill-equipped. So if you’re in need of mixing bowls or other kitchen accessories, I highly recommend checking out Ecosumo is the new online, one-stop shop for all things green. Take a look at the beautiful Bambu spoon and bowls I found! Bamboo products are great in the kitchen for many reasons. With a tensile strength superior to steel, bamboo is suitable for both hot and cold foods and clean up is a cinch. Just wash with warm soapy water or a damp cloth.

Not only will the Bambu products be a stylish addition to your kitchen, but you’ll also be helping the environment. Bamboo plays an important role in the reduction of timber consumption because it’s a non-timber, non-petroleum resource that grows incredibly fast.
My mouth is already watering for a taste of these sweet & salty treats. However, if you’re completely baking impaired or you don’t have a working oven, no worries… I’ve got a short-cut on the way!

1 comment:

  1. Believe or not, you can substitute canola oil for butter and the recipe works fine, AND they are free of those nasty saturated fats and full of healthy canola!