Emily has a nasty viral infection, plus 2 incisors coming through, so we stayed home (aside from a trip to Le Target...how does one get out of there for less than $100?! Suggestions?). Ava is only distracted by art and baking and I didn't want to deal with the mess of several art projects, so we baked. All. Day. Long.
First, we made some pearsauce. The girls and Joel picked a ton of pears over the weekend that really were to small and underripe to eat. Ava and I threw them into a dutch oven with some cinnamon and a 1/4 cup of water and let them simmer for about an hour. Tonight before bed, I will toss the pears into my crock pot with the following to make Pear Butter:
Makes 9-10 pints
8 quarts of pearsauce
1.5 teaspoons nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon cloves
1/4 teaspoon Allspice
2 teaspoons grated orange peel (just the surface, not the spongy white part)
1 cup orange juice
Sugar, to taste
Place half of the pearsauce and all of the remaining ingredients in crock pot, set on low, cook for 6 to 12 hours, or overnight, until the volume is reduced by half. Add remaining pearsauce, let cook for 2 to 3 more hours. Pour into jars or consume immediately (on toast, pancakes, waffles, fingers, etc.)
I had some cherries that we weren't going through fast enough, so while the pearsauce simmered away, Ava and I pitted some cherries for a cherry cobbler/clafouti type of dessert. I basically combined 2 recipes to go with what I had on hand and here's what I got:
1/2 cup butter
2 cups self-rising flour (Or 2 cups AP flour, 1 T baking powder, 1 t salt)
1 cup sugar
2 cups milk
3 cups cherries, pitted
While that was baking, Ava decided that she wanted to make cookies too...so we started on a recipe that I've had for a while, but haven't made yet, Whole Wheat Snickerdoodles. I think that Ava wanted to make them because she thought the word "snickerdoodle" was silly, and I wanted to make them for Joel, because Snickerdoodles are his favorite. If you try these, be sure to use whole wheat pastry flour or the texture will be wacky. This only made about 20 cookies...plenty for Joel and Ava to each have one or two, leftovers to take with me to book club tonight.
Whole Wheat Snickerdoodles
1/2 cup butter
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
2 tablespoons white sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Cream butter and sugar until fluffy. Add egg and vanilla. Beat well. Add dry ingredients.
Shape dough into 1 inch balls and roll in sugar cinnamon mixture. Place 2 inches apart on ungreased cookie sheets. Flatten slightly with a drinking glass.
Bake at 375 for 8-10 minutes.
I usually like to take pictures of how things turn out but today I felt a bit lazy, plus I had Emily in the Ergo all day and it was hard to concentrate. So...no pictures, but let me just say that I taste tested everything and it's all yummy!
Of course, I am making something completely healthy for dinner...bowls of black beans, brown rice, and red sauce. I plan on adding some sour cream to mine but...I also carried a baby on my back all day AND walked to the library and back, so I deserve it :P.
After this crazy day (which as of me typing still has two hours left...Joel won't be home until at least then!), I'm looking forward to escaping to my book club this evening (the book is Beneath a Marble Sky by John Shors and I think we actually will get to conference call with the author!). A few glasses of wine and some nibbles with friends sounds like the perfect way to end such a hectic day!