October 30, 2008

Chocolate Chip Cookies

The following recipe is a family favourite. The recipe makes a large batch...the amount actually depends on the size of the cookies you make.

I use a small ice cream scoop (close to the size of a melon baller). I spray the inside with cooking spray so the dough doesn't stick (I have to re-spray from time to time). Using the scoop keeps the cookies uniform shape and makes them very pretty. I have been known to put the 'balls' of dough on a cookie sheet (covered with baking paper) then into the freezer. When the dough is frozen I then transfer it to a zip lock freezer bag and then back into the freezer. Now I can pull out however many cookies I want to make at a time and have some on hand for next time. Of course my kids loved to just eat the cookie dough straight from the freezer so they didn't last very long there either.

The cookies spread so leave about 1 1/2 inches between them. If you have any questions go ahead and ask in the comment box.

Chocolate Chip Cookies

Cream together:

1 1/2 cups sugar
2 cups brown sugar
1 lb margarine (500g)
3 eggs
1 1/2 TBL vanilla


6 cups Plain flour
1 1/2 tsp baking SODA (bi-carb soda)
1 1/2 tsp salt

Mix well. Then add packet of choc chips...white or brown. White goes well with chopped macadamia nuts.

(At this point I cover the dough and place it in the fridge for a few hours just to firm it up a bit. It's easier to work with when it's not 'gooey'.)

Cook at 180 degrees Celsius (350 degrees F) for 10 mins.

October 27, 2008

Homemade Tim Tams

Ohhhh we all know that Tim Tams are a girl's best friend. Those who have not yet discovered this fact....I'm so sorry....but hold off any thoughts of hopelessness. Read on there is a surprise. We all love truffles. I came across a recipe that combines BOTH!!! I kid you not!!!

So here's the recipe for Tim Tam Truffles:

One packet of Tim Tams (good so far right)
One packet of cream cheese (low fat if you want but WHY??? you're using a packet of Tim Tams!!!!!!!!!)
Melting chocolate
Skewers (optional)

You'll want to crush the Tim Tams so they are very fine. Look for the texture of bread crumbs...or finer (using a food processor would be great or even your blender). No you're going to add in the cream cheese and mix really well. Wrap it in plastic wrap...put it in a zip lock back....cover with foil...any of these will work, and chill. Chill for a couple of hours (BE PATIENT!!)

Take the mix out from the fridge and roll into about wallnut size. (That size so you don't just shove the entire thing in your mouth in one go.....try and look like you can control yourself at least.) Put it on the tip of the skewer and dip it in melted chocolate. Ohhhh I forgot to say MELT THE CHOCOLATE) You can sprinkle some coconut over it if you want....drizzle melted white chocolate....or instead of dipping it in chocolate you can just roll it in cocoa.

Now for the SURPRISE!!!!!!!!

I have searched the internet. Looked in every nook and cranny and FOUND a recipe for a Tim Tam bikkie. I have not tried it yet....but you can bet I will. I just couldn't wait to post it is all. I'm not exactly sure how I feel about it but reckon it could work in a pinch. The recipe is exactly how I found it. Should I make some changes to it after I make it I will come back and let you know. If you make them before me and found something else works, PLEASE come back and let us know. To my American friends; I hope you can understand the recipe. I've tried to link up some ingredients to sites that explain them. If you're still confused, let me know.

Here's a conversion site: Online conversion

Here's a translation:

biscuits = Cookies
bikkies = cookies
copha = don't even bother...you have nothing like it. Crisco or lard comes close but Ewwww Ohhh hang on....parafin might work. Don't you sometimes use that to melt with chocolate? Correct me if I'm wrong.

Here's a site that can help with more fun Aussie words: Also known as Strine

Homemade tim tams

250g pack Jersey caramels
20g butter
1 tablespoon cream
1 and 1/2 packs (375g) Morning Coffee biscuits
450g dark chocolate melts (or use real chocolate for a better flavour)
40g copha

Line two oven trays with foil.

Combine the caramels, butter and cream in a small pan. Stir over a low heat until caramels have melted and mixture is smooth. cool slightly until mix begins to thicken.

Sandwich two biscuits together with 1 teaspoon of caramel mixture. Repeat with remaining biscuits. Let the biscuits rest for 15 minutes or until the caramel firms.

Combine the chocolate and copha in a small bowl and stand the bowl over a pan of simmering water. Stir until melted and smooth.

Use two forks to dip the biscuits in the chocolate mixture, shake off the excss and place on the prepared trays to set.


October 15, 2008

The Santa Letters

I was scheduled to go to the hospital for a 'procedure'. I would be sitting by myself for a few hours and did not want to read 3 year old magazines while waiting. I knew exactly what I was going to take with me. The day before, my copy of 'The Santa Letters' had arrived. PERFECT...I'll take that.

I must have looked a treat sitting in the corner with all the faces that this book made me pull. Faces of surprise, relief, compassion, sorrow, joy.

The story is about Emma and how after her husband died in a car accident during the Christmas season a year before. She has been struggling to keep her head above water in the currents of life, as she works and takes care of her four children.

Emma is not looking forward to another Christmas. The memories and the lack of finances culminate to the dread of this Christmas. Six year old McKenna is excited about Christmas because she believes, due to a dream she had, they will experience a miracle.

Then the letters started coming. The letters helped to remind the family of what Christmas was really about and to look beyond their sorrow.

As I read this experience of the Jensen family, I began to think of how I could have the same things happen within my own family. I think of the times 'Santa' came through for us a few Christmases and the faces of my Children. This book was not only a good read, it was also a good inspiration. It has inspired me to make this Christmas a more thoughtful and Christlike time. "The Santa Letters" by Stacy Gooch-Anderson is this Christmas season's 'must read'.

To learn more about this book, the author, or get your own Santa Letter inspiration, go to thesantaletters.org.

October 14, 2008


When I make pizza I cheat and use slices of bread. I simply butter one side and put it on the baking tray buttered side down. Then I spread with tomato paste and add the toppings as per normal. Last Saturday I thought I would give a new recipe for pizza dough a go. It worked like a charm. It was EASY, which is always important to me, and quick....which is another plus.

Here's the recipe I used:

Pizza Dough

SUBMITTED BY: Gudny Bjorg Kjaerbo

"This one is a quick recipe that merely involves mixing a few basic ingredients and patting the dough into the pan. No need to wait for the dough to rise with this approach."

Original recipe yield 1 pizza


  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 package active dry yeast (2 1/2 tsp)
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon white sugar
  • 1 cup warm water (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)


  1. Combine flour, salt, sugar, and yeast in a large bowl. Mix in oil and warm water. Spread out on a large pizza pan. Top as desired.
  2. Bake at 375 degrees C (190 degrees C) for 20 to 25 minutes.
The following day I even made breadsticks with the same recipe. In between conference sessions I made them so that we could enjoy them while watching the next session. This is now a favourite recipe that will be used over and over again.

Catching up on things.......

My goodness...what a difference a month makes. There has been a lot going on in my life and my home. Too much to even put my head around let alone write about. Here are some of my favourite sayings that should give some indication of how I'm doing.

People say "this too shall pass" and I say...so does a KIDNEY STONE and that's about as much fun.

I've come to realize that the light at the end of the tunnel is a TRAIN!!!!

Life isn't passing me by it's trying to RUN ME OVER!!!

I try to take it one day at a time, but sometimes several days attack me at once.

Feel free to use these quotes in your own life when things are piling up.

This past Sunday I was able to sit and watch General Conference with my family. Ohhhh what wonderful messages. There seemed to be a message of hope, hang in there, and you're not alone, throughout the talks. Messages we could all use I'm sure but just so you know, those talks were for ME. I think someone sent a memo to the brethren and asked them to please address all their talks to Wendy Cohen.

President Dieter F. Uchtdorf: The Infinite Power of Hope

Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin: Come What May and Love It

Elder Jeffrey R. Holland : The Ministry of Angels

President Thomas S. Monson : Finding Joy in the Journey

I think for the next few weeks I will listen to these talks again to remind me of the messages within. Deep breath in and on with the day!