Friday, July 1, 2016

52 Weeks of Cookies: A Year in Review

I did it!  52 weeks is up and 52 new cookie recipes were made!

What did I learn?
  • Baking cookies every week helped me understand the basic cookie recipe - ingredients, measurements, and methods.  I know so much more about what different ingredients or methods do to the final outcome.  I could almost create a recipe without out looking - maybe.
  • I really enjoyed learning as I went through each week and seeing my knowledge grow by simply practicing baking so often.  
  • I learned, or maybe relearned, that I do well with rules and goals and really enjoy having both outlined clearly.  Along with that, I feel guilt easily, often self-imposed by my own rules/goals/expectations.  
  • Also, I learned just how happy cookies make people!  My goodness people love cookies.  More than I even thought.  It really is the simple things.

What tools did I already have that were helpful?
  • Good cookie sheets
  • A sturdy, grid cookie cooling rack
  • Silpat mats
  • A great rubber spatula to scrape the bowl
  • A thin, flexible spatula to lift cookies
  • Cookie scoops
  • a trivet (for setting the hot cookie sheets on to cool quicker between batches - good tip)

What did I buy?
  • Kitchenaid Stand Mixer (I've always wanted one, this just gave me the excuse to buy one when I found a good deal.  LOVE IT.)
  • A sifter - the kind you spin the handle, not squeeze because that's too much work
  • An extra large cookie spatula to move several cookies to the cooling rack at once
  • A zester, so much easier than a basic grater
  • round biscuit cutters
  • some other cookie cutters
  • gel icing, so fun!
  • plenty of extract, butter, sugars, flour, cream cheese, citrus, chocolate, and other required ingredients!
  • Gallon size bags for shipping and gifting and storing
  • Lots of postage!
  • I was gifted a nice non-stick mat for rolling out dough

What do I miss?
  • Making people happy
  • Cookies!
  • The therapy of baking
  • feeling accomplished each week
  • having a specific goal to complete

What makes me glad it's over?
  • Having a clean kitchen!
  • Measuring cups/spoons are put away in the cabinet
  • I don't have to plan something all the time
  • I don't have to shop for baking ingredients
  • I can do other things with that time and not feel as busy

My top 10 (not in ranked order, because I can't pick that)
  1. I Want to Marry You Cookies
  2. Twix Cookies
  3. Soft and Chewy Cinnamon Cookies
  4. Brown Butter Salted Caramel Cookies
  5. Lemon Bar Cookie Cups
  6. Orange Zested Cookies
  7. Flourless Peanut Butter Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies
  8. Pumpkin Cookies with Cream Cheese Filling
  9. Pretzel Cookies with Chocolate and Peanut Butter Chips
  10. Chocolate Chip Cookies

My most common cookie tasters' cumulative top 5 - sort of, because they were all so different.
(This group is Brian, my mom, grandma, Ron, my dad, Barbara)

  1. Twix Cookies
  2. Strawberry Lemonade Cookies
  3. Chocolate Chip Cookies
  4. Pumpkin Cookies with Cream Cheese Filling
  5. Lemon Bar Cookie Cups

What's next??
First, a break!
I feel the need to ease out of this adventure.  So.

I am going to try to continue to make a new cookie recipe, maybe one a month?  We'll see.  No limitations, rules, etc.  I want to keep up the baking at a much slower pace.

I have always loved baking.  I will always love baking.  Baking once meant out of a box or a simple recipe for a special occasion.  I started to venture out and try some ideas once I found Pinterest.  Now I have tried so many new things.  This year has vastly expanded my confidence, willingness, and love for baking cookies and sharing with others.  Cookies make people happy.  I love cookies.  I love making people happy.  WIN!

Peace, love, and cookies!

No comments:

Post a Comment