The New Adventures of Old Shortbread & the Arrival of Adulthood…

 

…but mostly upperclassman-dom and off-campus living. Welcome to my new living abode, and more importantly, my new kitchen. It’s quite small; I feel a bit like Smitten Kitchen, minus a few years and a book tour. This little thing is shared among 4 girls. The home of new creations, old family recipes, and college-edition Chopped competitions…we’ll see about that one.
I’ve already made some meat stew for my rice, for the first time all myself. It…tastes great! But I’m gonna have to refine the texture a bit, making fewer chunks and thicker soups. So once I’ve made it to my satisfaction you can expect a post on that, hopefully soon.
But, of course, in the first week of my habitation in an APARTMENT OOOO, I’ve baked cookies. And I…wait for it…created another recipe!…though it’s hard to screw up shortbread. Crunchy, buttery, flaky! What could be better? I know! Add peanut butter, naturally. I got really excited when I tried Wegmans’ organic peanut butter because it was just as peanut buttery as inorganic peanut butter. If you’ve ever tried organic peanut butter expecting the same texture as Skippy’s, you likely experienced a rude shock when you had trouble unclenching your teeth. In short, organic peanut butter is thick as fudge and the point of any of this is that I added peanut butter to your basic shortbread recipe and it was great. The end.
Due to short-notice/impromptu dinner guests, I was stuck to figure out what to make with what was in the kitchen already. This is what went through my head and hands for 20 minutes upon entering the kitchen:

  1. It’s me we’re talking about, if I present a baked good, people will neither be surprised nor complain
  2. No chocolate chips again, no problem. Time for that handy dandy peanut butter!
  3. Ok, sugar and butter in bowl…why do I have a feeling there’s no baking powder…
  4. …there’s no baking powder. Okay, okay…cookies without baking powder?
  5. Shortbread. Done. Wait that’s boring. Peanut butter.
  6. Honey.
  7. Bag of pretzels on fridge…yeah let’s use that.
  8. Should make double this….nah.

They were a massive hit (as if the combo of shortbread and peanut butter weren’t completely revolutionary!). In the meantime, I’ll be needing some baking powder. Look forward to more baking and cooking adventures of Carmen and circle apartment xxxxx. Here are some mean peanut butter pretzel shortbread cookies while we wait.

Peanut Butter Pretzel Shortbread
Makes about 45 cookies

1 cup butter
1 cup sugar
4 tablespoons peanut butter
2 tablespoons honey
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 cups flour
5 large twist pretzels, or 10 mini twist pretzels

Preheat oven to 350 and grease two baking sheets
Cream the butter and sugar. Add the peanut butter, honey, and vanilla. Gradually mix in the flour.
Refrigerate the dough for at least one hour.
Flatten the dough onto baking sheets. Crush pretzels and press into dough. Cut dough into pieces with a knife. Or, roll out onto flat surface and cut out shapes with cookie cutter(s), then press in pretzel pieces.
Bake for 10 minutes, or until top of dough browns.

I had the foresight to write out a recipe that was already doubled;
don’t worry about small masses of dough like this one!
I’m getting excited about the windows in this apartment and their positioning
relative to the sun. #photonerdprobs #cantdealwithartificiallight
This is a cookie dough you I need extra self-discipline to not eat
because there’s no egg

 

So I may have burnt them a bit…keep an eye on them because I’m not 100%
on the 10 minutes…someone try them and let me know (this was 15).
A nice golden hour comes through our dining room every night.
Very okay with this (may need to work on this lighting for food, however)
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