Every once in awhile I make something that falls solidly into the category of too good. Usually, I know it’s coming, and I plan accordingly. For example, I know that I’m addicted to Magic Bars, so I made them while I was at my parents’ for a short period of time, knowing I could leave them behind.
I decided to be selfish this weekend. Usually, I love to bake things for other people. I bring treats into work and they disappear before 2nd period. I bring treats to my classes and my students remember that I can be cool on occasion. I bring treats to friends and make more friends. But this week I decided to make something only I would get to eat: granola bars.
Want to know what happens when you have 6 snow days in a month and a half? You lose all track of time. Literally. This past weekend was supposed to be a long weekend from school for Presidents’ Day. We were going to have Friday through Tuesday off. However, we had 4 snow days in January/early February, so the school decided to take away 2 of those days (Friday and Tuesday) because we didn’t have enough days built into the end of the year. So in honor of having school on Valentine’s Day after all, I decided to make heart-shaped …
I had a really hard time deciding what to bake this weekend. I was home in Massachusetts with my parents, who are currently in the the process of selling the house I grew up in, and when I have the whole kitchen at my disposal I always feel like I need to make something extra special. Also, when I bake at their house, I know that I won’t have to bring the treats home with me, so there is little danger that I will eat them all. This also makes me want to bake more extravagant things.
Good things happen when I finish all of my grading and lesson planning before 2 on a Sunday. Good things in the form of baking adventures that I can pursue leisurely for hours on end. Good things in the form of FINALLY breaking in my yellow stand mixer. Isn’t it beautiful?
In school on Friday, a student asked me what I do over the weekends. I realized that when I was a student, I, too, had a hard time imagining my teachers existing outside of the classroom. Did they just do biology experiments all weekend? Did they sleep at their desk? Did they have a life?
I spent the weekend in NYC with my mom, who was an amazing sport and took the train down from Massachusetts (that’s a very long train ride). We went and saw Lion King on Broadway, exactly 20 years after I first saw Lion King in theaters, which is pretty cool. I’m actually listening to the soundtrack now as I write this. Anyways, despite a weekend in the city with lots of inspiration in the form of baked goods around us, we couldn’t come up with what I should bake this weekend. Additionally, whatever I baked had to be doable while …
Last Christmas recipe, I promise. And these also aren’t really a Christmas-exclusive recipe, so I don’t feel bad about it. Imagine them in shapes other than Christmas trees if it bothers you.
Christmas is a baker’s dream come true. There are so many parties to make desserts for. So many people to give cookies to. So many excuses to use lots of butter and sugar to make everyone happy. So it should be no surprise that I have a bit of a backlog of recipes to share with you. Back in December, I mentioned my Cookie Project – every year I make cookie tins as gifts with at least 4 different kinds of cookie included. One of those didn’t make it onto SMiLes before Christmas itself (I forgot to bring the recipe …
Now, the recipe I’m sharing today is one I wasn’t totally sure should leave the family recipe box. It is a Christmas favorite, and I only make it on Christmas every year. In fact, one year my mom tried to make a Thanksgiving version, but it was so unnatural that we couldn’t do it again. This is a Christmas dessert. And it only works with chocolate. No exceptions.