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Archive for the ‘Cookies’ Category

This was probably my favorite part of my entire project. Part of that stemmed from the fact that I knew that I was doing something good for my community. 

A lot of people aren’t familiar with the Hospice Movement, so I will explain it to you a little bit. The Hospice Movement has been evolving ever since the 11th century, but the first modern Hospice Home was created in the 1940’s by Dr. Dame Cicely Saunders. The entire premise of Hospice is to give palliative care to the terminally ill. So essentially, the people who work for Hospice are there to help alleviate and prevent some of the suffering from the patients by making them as comfortable as possible. Not only do Hospitals have Hospice wings, there are Hospice Homes, and there are also services that allow the terminally ill to pass away in their own homes. It sounds really morbid, but what they are doing is a really great thing.

I have personal experience with Hospice because it was a service that my family utilized during the passing of my Father. The workers are there not only for the patient, but for the family as well. Without Hospice, a lot of families would have an even harder time dealing with the loss of their loved one.

Earlier this year, I was talking to Mrs. Burr about my Senior Project. She suggested working at the Hospice Home, and I entertained the idea for quite a while. Eventually, I decided that it wasn’t the best route for me. I told her, however, that I would still love to do something with the Hospice Home.

When I came up with the idea for doing a baking blog, I told Mrs. Burr what I would like to bake something for the Hospice Home if at all possible. She contacted her friend, Janet Herman, who was a volunteer at the Woltz Hospice Home in Dobson, not to far from the school. 

Janet said that she would allow me to come into the home and bake in the kitchen there. Due to policies, I couldn’t bake things at my house to bring in.

I measured all of my ingredients out before I went in there. This helped me get things done a lot quicker, and I also didn’t have to bring entire bags of flour and sugar all the way to Dobson.

Another policy of the Hospice Home is that you have to wrap everything up after you bake them. So we took the cookies and individually wrapped them after we were done.

I went there on Wednesday of this week, and made 2 batches of sugar cookies and one batch of brownies for the family waiting room. As I was baking, families were drifting in and out, commenting on how good everything smelled. One thing that Janet mentioned to me was how it was comforting to the patients to smell the smell of homemade baked goods.

Janet was one of the greatest people that I’ve met. She was so funny, and she had no qualms with telling people her opinion. Most of the time, it takes me a while to get used to new people, but Janet seemed really familiar even though I knew that I had never met her.

I am extremely thankful for this experience, and I plan on going back to do some more things with the home. I mentioned to Janet that I would like for Student Council to make some Easter-treats or crafts for the Hospice Home. We are currently in the process of coming up with ideas, but I think that a lot of people can benefit from seeing the good that the Hospice Home does.

 

Time Spent ~ 3.5 hours.

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If there is one thing I love in this world, it is mint-flavored anything. Mint cookies, mint cake, mint candies, mint drinks. I’m legitimately obsessed with mint. I’m sure there is a Mint-Lovers Anonymous, and I’m sure that I need to join it. However, in my mint-bliss, I ignore the fact that I do  have a problem. 

But these cookies were amazing. I was having a craving for something minty, something simple, and something relatively quick. I sat and stared at my oven until these were done cooking.

I really enjoyed making these because I was completely alone in my house, it was raining, and I was singing Arcade Fire at the top of my lungs. It was the best part of the whole adventure, actually.

It’s times like these that make me remember why it’s probably a good thing that I’m not left by myself for long periods of time. I like listening to my music at an earsplitting volume, and I also neglect my homework. Maybe I’m not that great at multi-tasking. Just maybe. Well, I can multi-task, but I just can’t scream and do homework at the same time. For the most part, I just end up writing down lyrics for answers.  There are countless papers that have had Sufjan Stevens lyrics inserted into them. Good thing I proofread.

But I digress. These cookies were wonderful. I have a thing for chewy cookies, so I was very impressed with these. If a cookie isn’t chewy, I’m not interested. If you have ever purchased a cookie that has a dent in the middle, it’s probably my fault. I’m that person who goes around, poking the middle of cookies, and seeing if they’re soft. It’s a terrible habit, but I have no desire to purchase a cookie that feels like a brick.

A lot of mint products have an overwhelming mint taste, but these (for me) were the perfect balance. Not too much. Not too little. It was absolute bliss.

Have I ever mentioned that my counter is always COVERED in flour after I’m done? It always looks like the flour fairy went nuts. I try my best to be neat and organized, but it never works out that way. Everything ends up being unorganized and messy. Needless to say, my OCD always goes absolutely bonkers when I’m done. If I wasn’t getting some sweet goodness afterwards, I wouldn’t put myself through this torture.

But I’m pretty sure that these cookies were worth the pain that they caused. Maybe I should just stop being so anal about it. Maybe that would get rid of all of my problems. But where’s the fun in that?

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mint-Chocolate Chip Cookies

Make 2 dozen

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups of all-purpose flour.
  • 1/4 teaspoon of salt.
  • 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder.
  • 1/2 (or 1 stick) of unsalted butter.
  • 1 cup of sugar.
  • 1 large egg, beaten.
  • 2 tablespoons of milk.
  • 1/2 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract.
  • 1/4 teaspoon of mint extract.
  • 1 cup of chocolate chips.
  • 1 cup of mint chips (I used Andes)

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Whisk together the flour, salt, and baking powder.
  3. Cream butter and sugar until fluffy.
  4. Add in egg, milk, and vanilla with butter and sugar.
  5. Add in the flour, salt, and baking powder mixture.
  6. Add in mint extract, chocolate chips, and mint chips; stir until well blended (I suggest using your hands for this).
  7. Form cookie rounds (I never measure this, but I made them rather large).
  8. Bake for 10-12 minutes and wait for it to cool.

Time Spent: 30 minute for prep, 10 minutes for cooking, 30 minutes for cooling, 1 hour for blogging~1.7 hours.

I’m really slow, you guys. My prep takes much longer than it should, but I’m working on it.

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