Friday, February 1, 2008

Cookies & Catch, and a few good books.

Okay, so I do not keep sweets around the house. But, I do keep a box or two of brownie mix, and a few different flavors of Duncan Hine's, cake mixes. Though I really am a make it from scratch girl, there have been a number of times I was thankful to have those boxes of hospitality around. It has been snowing since the wee hours of the morning, and it has been breathtakiningly, beautiful. I have been busy with some homework I need to get done. When I took a break to make myself a cup of tea, I realized how perfect a day it was for some little sweet cakes to go with our tea when Jon, gets home. Foraging through the house proved unfruitful........... until I pulled these items together.

I had just what it took to make a cookie recipe that was on the side of the cake mix box. Here is the simple and yummy recipe:

Coconut Chocolate Chews

1 package Duncan Hines Moist Deluxe Coconut Cake Mix
1/3 cup water
1/4 cup (half stick) butter, melted
1 large egg
1 cup shredded coconut
1 cup milk chocolate chips
1 cup sliced almonds

Preheat oven to 350 F. In a medium size bowl, blend together cake mix, water, butter and egg until creamy. Stir in coconut. Drop dough by rounded teaspoonfuuls onto ungreased baking sheet, 2-inches apart.

Bake 11-13 minutes or until cookies start to turn light brown.

Cool on baking sheet 1 minute before removing to cooling rack. Cool completely.

Place chocolate chips in microwave safe bowl. Microwave on high for 1 minute; stir. If necessary microwave in 10 second intervals to melt completely stiring after each interval. Drizzle chocolate over top of cookies. Sprinkle with almonds.

Here are the few places I varied from the recipe.
  • When I put the last batch in the oven, I put the almonds on a piece of foil and toated them.
  • Mine had to bake for 13-15 minutes.
This could be why they required more baking time than the recipe states;
  • I threw in an extra handful of coconut, and so you know, I had flaked on hand, not shredded. It worked fine.
  • I used a #40 OXO Good Grips cookie scoop. It holds 1 1/2 Tablespoons of dough.

This is what I used:

I saw no immediate need to get back at the homework since I would be up and down with the cookies coming out of the oven. So, here is what I (we), did instead.

I let Baxter, out just before I put the first batch in. When I called him in, he came to the bottom of the deck steps, but did not budge. He wanted me to join him.
(Baxter is so black it is hard to see his eyes. I recommend you click on at least this first picture to capture the moment. His eyes are very expressive.)

I threw a snowball for him to fetch. It was hysterical the way he went to retrieve it.

Where is that ball?

You got another one?

Okay, so where did it go?

Oh yeah!!! she threw another one.

That's got to be it!

What do you mean we need to go in now?

Okay, inside and back to the baking. This is probably the first batch of cookies I have baked that the recipe did not come out of one of the Hannah Swensen Mysteries, in geez... a year maybe. I finished the entire series. The next book in the series, Carrot Cake Murder, is to be released, February 26th, of this year. I am looking forward to reading it. I am currently the 4th person on the "request" list at my town library. I think I will check into the availability at the county library. Another book will be out March, of 2009, Cream Puff Murder.

While you are clicking on those sites, here is one for you. Click, then scroll down. You should see someone you recognize. :-) I am getting ready to start another series and I was thinking about the Agatha Raisin series by, M. C. Beaton. The idea of the stories being set primarily in the Cotswold's, sounds perfect to me. Is anyone familiar with that series.

Oh, and I don't know if you have ever noticed the link for Margaret Truman's Capital Crimes, in my Cozy Murders, sidebar. Margaret Truman, wrote some wonderful mystery, murder mysteries, that were set in, Washington D.C. She is a true testament to the notion of writing about what you know. I lived right over the D.C., line in Maryland, for many years. My father was military (Pentagon), and my mother worked for the federal government in, D. C. Reading those evoked so many wonderful memories for me. They were like being there. Margaret Truman, died this week and I wanted to mention that.

Jon, is home and it's tea and cakes time!

For the little amount of ingredients and work that go into these, they are really pretty good. The recipe made 28 nice size cookies. I have two plates wrapped up for a neighbor, and one for a nearby friend. Seems like a nice little "starter for your weekend" gift.

Be well, be blessed!


Kim said...

Those cookies look de-lish! Hey, cake mixes are right handy to have around. Our 11 yo baked a chocolate boxed cake just the other day and did her (now signature) 4 layers with homemade mocha frosting (this after the one I posted about). Then she baked another boxed cake (Funfetti) and did the 4 layers with vanilla buttercream frosting and sprinkles. She's done homemade, but those boxed cakes are just SO good! They're pretty cheap at the right stores, too.

Those murder mysteries you mentioned make me hungry! Cute titles!

Oh my. Baxter in the snow. He looks like he's havin' himself a time! Good thing he's so easy to see, eh? Send some of that snow down here, will ya, Teresa? We want more!

((hugs)), my frayund!

Barbara said...

Wow some snow here. As you can see I am trawling through your older posts from before I knew you.