So, remember when I was talking about my son and his fear of the crib?
Well, he decided after that night that he just wasn’t interested in sleeping in it. At all.
After one terrible night of him getting up about seven times, I decided something else could be wrong. I bit the bullet and took him to the doctor, preparing myself to be “that mom” (you know, the one who takes her kids to the pediatrician anytime something might be wrong). Since he’d hadn’t had a fever, was only a tad crankier than usual (which I assumed was due to lack of sleep), and overall seemed okay, I was totally expecting the “he’s a toddler, and he’s going to go through phases where he won’t sleep” lecture. Instead, I found out the poor kid’s been dealing with an ear and sinus infection. Oops. Mystery solved. (Maybe that was why he was trying to escape his crib: it hurt to lay down.)
One day of antibiotics later, and he was sleeping like a dream.
In the meantime, Hubs and I were planning for our annual Christmas Party. He is always in charge of the menu – it’s his thing. He loves preparing and entertaining for this event – and even starts planning his food in the summer. So, I couldn’t take that away from him. I did want to contribute in some way, so (in my then sleep-deprived head) I decided to
escape from my children spend some time in the kitchen baking cookies.
We have a good friend who comes to our parties that has Celiac disease, and Hubs is great at making a full meal gluten-free. I wanted to make sure she had a dessert to enjoy as well (as our guests are in charge of desserts). When I saw this recipe, I thought it would be a snap to make for her (and everyone else, because, to be honest – these cookies also just plain looked good!).
Monster Cookies, from Mel’s Kitchen Cafe
3 large eggs
1 1/4 c packed light brown sugar
1 c granulated sugar
1/2 t salt
1 t vanilla extract
1 1/2 c creamy peanut butter
1 stick butter (8 T), softened
1 c M&Ms (I used the red and green Christmas kind)
1 c semisweet chocolate chips
2 t baking soda
4 1/2 c quick cooking oats
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper, silpat liners or lightly grease with cooking spray.
In a large mixing bowl, combine the eggs and sugars. Mix well. Add the salt, vanilla, peanut butter and butter. Mix until creamy and well combined. Stir in the M&Ms, chocolate chips, baking soda and oatmeal. Mix well. Roll the dough into tablespoon-sized balls and place about 2 inches apart on the cookie sheets. Flatten the cookies slightly with the palm of your hand.
Bake the cookies for 8-10 minutes. Don’t overbake – the cookies should just be set and very lightly golden around the edges. Let the cookies sit for 1-2 minutes on the cookie sheet before transferring to a cooling rack to cool completely.
Don’t you hate it when you have the best of intentions, and it doesn’t work out? I’m not saying these cookies didn’t turn out to be absolutely amazing, but I am saying they ended up NOT being gluten-free.
I had thought I was being so good, too. I double-checked that M&M’s were okay. I even bought peanut butter that I knew was gluten-free. Little did I know that oats (yes - oats) are not. Apparently the oats themselves are fine, but the way they are processed can cause contamination. Thank goodness my friend asked me beforehand if the oats were specifically gluten-free. I would’ve hated for her to get sick from our party.
Anyways, the recipe says that it makes 2-3 dozen, but in our case, it made about six. Which was fine with me, as I got to
decompress relax in the kitchen for a bit longer – and I got to sample, um, several of the cookies (just to make sure they tasted okay, of course.)
Now, when I make these next time (yes, I said when not if), I think I will use some dark chocolate M&M’s instead of the milk chocolate ones. Mostly because after
five a few, they can get a little sweet (at least for me – milk chocolate is always a bit sweet for me. If you like milk chocolate, though, no substitutions are necessary).
(I’m the red one in front with the snow flakes – in case you were wondering.)
Now go bake some cookies.