chocolate cookies with sea salt, rosemary & orange zest


i hope you all out there are savoring the season. we've been having subzero temps here in minnesota, and right now, i don't mind a bit. any excuse to stay inside by the christmas tree is fine with me. i can almost see the -20° windchill outside, sparkly grains of snow blowing around like dust.

i recently mixed up some "grown up" christmas cookies. i had erin's post from last year filed away, and it proved to be just right. i'd recommend choosing your favorite chocolate cookie recipe (this one has great reviews), omit any add-ins, dip in melted chocolate, and garnish. chocolate cookies are usually too rich for me, but i loved the brightened flavor with sea salt (always my favorite), rosemary, and orange zest. perfectly seasonal. 

rest assured, plenty of batches of chocolate chip have been baked, and last night we made chocolate peanut butter. some traditions are just too good to mess with. 

wishing you blankets and scarves and many cups of tea. until next time.

late summer salad


figs are suddenly everywhere to be found. i quartered some and added to a spinach salad with goat cheese and toasted walnuts. a homemade oil + balsamic dressing was all it needed, and a quick lunch was to be had.

on a side note -  i've been playing around with processing lately, as i'm sure you can tell. trying to figure out what works and what doesn't, although the longer i stare, the longer i start to lose it!

nutella hand pies


i threw together nutella hand pies for a quick dessert this week. use your favorite pie crust recipe, and cut out circles about 4" in diameter. fill with a spoonful of nutella, fold and crimp the edges with a fork. brush with milk, and bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes. so easy. and really-- you can justify them for breakfast, too! 

grilled peaches with honeyed mascarpone


a quick dessert for a late summer evening, when peaches are ripe and meals are enjoyed outdoors. halve peaches, remove pits, and brush lightly with oil. place face-down on a medium/high grill just long enough for marks to appear-- 3-4 minutes or so. fill with a spoonful of whipped mascarpone and local honey, sprinkle with turbinado. add fresh herbs if you like-- i would have preferred basil, but thyme worked well and i'm sure mint would be delicious. i tend to opt for the savory. serve with a crisp white wine that's (hopefully) already open.