Saturday, May 19, 2012

Cherry Chocolate Chip Cookies

Well, I am exhausted. Yesterday was probably a little too fun-filled. It started with lunch and antiquing with mom, gramma, and sister, switched into a frenzy of cookie baking by early evening, and concluded with a night at the drive in with friends. Joe and I got home at 2am which is well past our old-people bed time and Dashel, showing no mercy, was wide awake this morning by 7am. So I will be paying for yesterday's fun with a haze of exhaustion today. Worth it.

Now back to that cookie baking frenzy. Here's the thing about cookies: I love them. I also am trying to watch what and how much I eat. Enter, the cookie dilemma. I understand that moderation is key to a healthy lifestyle but moderation flies out the window the minute there is a fresh-out-of-the-oven cookie tray sitting on my counter. It used to totally deflate me when, in a moment of weakness, I would wolf down an unseemly amount of cookies (or cake, or insert trigger food here) in one sitting. You may know what I'm talking about. One minute you're staring at a pan of cookies, basking in the scent of chocolate, butter, and sugar and thinking, "maybe just one," then, before your brain really even has a chance to process what's happening, the cookies are gone and you're left staring at an empty cookie sheet with only a belly ache and a sweeping sense of remorse to keep you company.

What's that you say? You have no idea what I'm talking about? You find two cookies to be more than satisfying and are never caught in a whirlwind of food inhalation?

Yah, me neither.

I guess basically the point I'm making here is that everyone indulges from time to time. Maybe not everyone over indulges to the degree I occasionally do, but no matter how strictly you adhere to a diet, there will be slip ups. That's why I've kind of readjusted my food philosophy. Granted, I try to keep these feeding frenzies to a minimum, but when I find myself needing a cookie fix, I allow it. The difference is that now I try to pack in as many nutrients as possible so that even though I'm trashing my diet, I'm not totally trashing my body. This means opting for homemade cookies filled with nuts and fruit over oreos or funfetti cake which, though delectable, are pretty much just made of corn syrup and food coloring.

Moral of the story: it's okay to occasionally indulge! Just try to do it wisely and don't beat yourself up about it afterwards.

Cherry Chocolate Chip Cookies
Makes: 2 dozen

1/2 cup butter, softened
2/3 cup brown sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
2 eggs
1 cup unbleached, all purpose flour
1/4 cup flax
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 cup dried cherries, chopped
1 cup walnuts, chopped
3/4 cup dark chocolate chips (I like using the mini morsels in this recipe, better chocolate dispersion)

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
2. Cream together butter and sugar til light and fluffy.
3. Add eggs and vanilla and beat til incorporated.
4. In a separate bowl, combine flour, flax, salt and soda. Add to butter mixture and mix thoroughly.
5. Stir in chopped cherries, walnuts and chocolate chips. Drop by spoonfuls on an ungreased cookie sheet and cook for 12 minutes or until edges are slightly browned.
6. Thoroughly enjoy these knowing they are loaded with antioxidants, omega 3 fats, and folic acid to boot!

Thank you, little seester, for buying me this awesome antique find! A set of 38 glorious vintage dishes. Joe's reaction upon seeing them "Whoa, yellow!" Followed by, "Where are you going to store those?"

Related much? Three generations of shopping ladies. Love'em all!

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