December 18, 2010

Chocolate Attacks; Maims 20

It has been a weird week.  The boy was on a business (er, science) trip and I was left to fend for myself.  After a ton of adoptions at the holiday event, the shelter has been shuffling kittehs around, and my favorite community room got a couple new cats.  Every time I go volunteer there, I wish wish wish I was making enough money to be able to foster.  SOON.  Someday.

Anyway, the food.  I made black and white shortbread.  Half chocolate, half normal ol' shortbread, it is the lazy lady's version of those pretty checkerboard shortbreads you sometimes see.  

It began with Earth Balance buttery sticks.  I'm not sure why, but buttery sticks never seem to work as well for me as the Earth Balance tubs.  I combined the buttery stuff with some vegetable shortening, but even then the shortbread wasn't as "short" and non-spreading as I would have liked.  I've never had a problem with the tub form of Earth Balance though. 

Shortenin' shortenin'

Tons of powdered sugar.

Slicing the chilled dough.

I packaged a bunch of these to send to relatives and some as a thank you to my boss for a letter of recommendation.  

Then, there were bananas.  I bought some "red band" bananas from the grocery - a huge bunch for 50 cents just because they were a little spotty.  I had planned on making the same old banana muffins I usually make, but the boy had the excellent idea of making them chocolate.  And not just chocolate chip, but goddamned chocolatey.  The result was definitely not a healthy breakfast item, but it was fluffy and delicious.

I packed him a few to take on his trip to the East Coast, from which he'll be arriving in just a few hours.  It's so boring to cook just for myself, and I've resorted to eating mostly oatmeal and leftovers while I bake Christmas gifts and potluck dishes.

The muffin platform is a diverse and forgiving medium; to construct this one, I added 1/3 cup of cocoa powder to my regular banana muffin recipe and a cup or so of chocolate chips.  These muffins (to be honest, they were more like cupcakes) were very moist even though they were low in oil and fat.  Bananas.  They're professionals at keeping baked goods moist and fluffeh.

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