Now that I’m working at the restaurant my baking has been severely curtailed. (The one thing I do bring in is ice cream, but that’s purely for selfish reasons as I’m trying to convince Chef that he needs to buy an ice cream machine.) It’s not that I don’t want to be baking, I do, but I’m currently running into two problems. The first is that I have a whole lot less time on my hands and simply can’t spend as much of it baking. The second is that I have nowhere for my baking to go, (apparently my stomach cannot be the only option). I’m less inclined to bring cookies or squares into the restaurant because we’re already surrounded by food so the interest is much lower than it was at the office. But how am I supposed to analyze behaviour if I can’t even get people to fight to the death over a cookie? Basically it’s the wrong environment to carry out my observational studies in, at least in their previous form. There’s plenty of weird behaviour to catalog, tons of it actually, it’s just not brought out by creating a cookie shortage, (and besides, they’re cooks, I figure they can make their own if they really wanted one). So my problem remains. To solve it I either have to bake less or deal with eating more treats than I should ever consume and still hope to live to see the next day. I even tried mailing some baked goods away but quickly decided that was a bandaid solution that caused other problems, namely a shortage in my wallet and smushed product that never arrived at its destination quickly enough. It’s an ongoing dilemma…
While I try to figure it out, feel free to enjoy four more Martha Stewart recipes from her latest book, Cookies. The Cappuccino-Chocolate Bites, are actually supposed to be sandwich cookies but I didn’t feel like making a filling for them and they were pretty good all on their own. The Brown-Butter Toffee Blondies are tooth-achingly sweet and are best enjoyed with a cup of coffee to cut the sweetness. The Gingerbread-White Chocolate Blondies were good but you’ll probably like them more than I did if you like white chocolate. I can only deal with it in very, very small doses. And finally, Chocolate-Ginger Brownies. I’m constantly buying candied ginger with the hope of baking with it but I usually end up eating it all before it ever makes it near a baked good. These brownies don’t even call for candied ginger but I felt the need to add some in, if only to prove that I could actually get the ginger into my baking before my mouth.
Chocolate-Ginger Brownies, (from Martha Stewart’s Cookies)
½ cup unsalted butter
3 oz bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 cup sugar
2/3 cup all purpose flour
¼ cup unsweetened, Dutch process cocoa powder
2 large eggs
1 tsp grated, peeled fresh ginger
½ tsp vanilla
½ tsp nutmeg
½ tsp ground ginger
¼ tsp salt
1/8 tsp cloves
¼ cup minced, candied ginger, (my addition)
Preheat oven to 325F. Butter and line an 8 x 8 inch pan with parchment paper.
Melt butter and chocolate together in medium saucepan over medium low heat, stirring until smooth. Remove from heat and stir in the other ingredients.
Pour into the prepared pan and smooth with a spatula. Bake 30-35 minutes until a tester inserted into the centre comes out with moist crumbs. Let cool on wire rack for 15 minutes, then remove from pan and let cool completely on wire rack.