I love to cook and bake. In fact, there was a time (not so long ago) when I was Queen of the Kitchen. Not exactly a title worthy of pomp and circumstance (although a tiara wouldn't have been too much to ask for) but a title I took seriously nonetheless. There were always cookies in the cookie jar -- cookies which I made (along with various cakes and brownies) from scratch. I also baked fresh bread and rolls and made my own pizza dough and pasta (yum!). Heck, for a while there, I even made ice cream and my family was treated to a homecooked meal at least five nights a week.
Those days are long gone.
Now that I'm writing full time, my family's lucky they get fed period. Gone are the days of planned meals and tasty, homemade treats. I no longer take the time to slowly peruse the grocery store for the best ingredients. Instead, I rush through my local Wal-Mart as if my hair's on fire, using my cart (filled with convenience and frozen foods) as a battering ram and trying not to make eye contact with the other customers.
Fortunately, my family has adjusted to this new lifestyle quite well. They know how important my writing is to me and how hard I'm working to turn this into a successful career. And I've also let (forced) them take over the kitchen once a week to cook dinner. So far those dinners consist of chicken quesadillas (my son's speciality) grilled cheese with tomato soup, and hot dogs with homemade mac and cheese, but at least I won't have to worry about them (or me!) starving while I'm working on my latest story *g*
Still, I sometimes miss those times in the kitchen, especially those times cooking up something delicious with my children. Which is why today I'm going to set aside the time to make Joan's chocolate chip cookies (reference Joan's nanny nanny poo poo post) with my daughters. Because time with my children is precious. Because my kids are growing up way too fast.
And because I'm craving some chocolate :-)
Just in case I'm not alone in my chocolate craving, I'm including one of my favorite, simple dessert recipes. This is a combination of cake and pudding so use a spoon when serving.
Chocolate Pudding Cake
1 cup flour
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup baking cocoa
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. ginger
1/2 cup milk
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 1/2 cups boiling water
Combine flour, 3/4 cup sugar, 1/4 cup cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and ginger in medium bowl. Stir in milk, vegetable oil and vanilla to form a thick batter. Spread into a greased 9" round or 5 1/2 qt. oval baking dish.
Combine remaining sugar and cocoa with the brown sugar and sprinkle over batter. Pour boiling water over top of all. Bake at 350 degrees for 25 min. (cake will be gooey underneath -- like pudding) Serve warm with whipped cream or ice cream.