Wednesday, July 29, 2009


WHAT A PAIR! (-or- Moose Nuggets to say good-bye)

First there were Lucy and Ethel.

Then there were Barbie and Midge.

Then there were Gertrude and Alice.

…. well, maybe not.

Then there were Laverne and Shirley.

And then there were French and Saunders.

Now, there are Jamie and Clare. And what a pair.

Ok, so all the good photos of us are on her camera on their way home. Give me a bit of time.

Great women duos, what would one be without the other? One plays it straight or plays off the other, not as much sidekick as foil. They make fun of themselves, trip over each other, fall flat on their hypothetical backsides and get right up and start all over again. They know what the other is thinking before it is said, they reinvent themselves as they go along, they, in the end, are women, supported by the other, capable of anything, afraid of no situation and there is nothing they won’t try.

Clare and I just spent a week together. We have known each other for not quite a year, first through Mudflats then across the pages of Facebook. What happens when you finally meet someone you know only over the internet, what flits through your mind when you are off to pick them up at the train station knowing that they will be spending a whole week in your home?

The ten days have come and gone and she is now on her way to Switzerland. I am thrilled to say that Clare and I got along like a house on fire, as if we had been neighbors forever. Our inner Lucy and Ethel kicked in the minute we met face to face, Laverne and Shirley minus the beer factory. Well, we may not be as goofy as that greatest of American tv teams from the 50’s (I mean, false eyelashes and lipstick when you are disguised as a man? Who was she kidding?) or quite as outrageous as Dawn and Jennifer at their mightiest. We may not even be as glamorous as Barbie and Midge, but we made one hell of a great team.

Everything is fun with a friend.

She taught me to make no-knead bread, I introduced her to the first and best steak tartare she has and will ever eat. We showed each other clips of our favorite British Comedies and we laughed until we cried. Everything and anything makes us both think of food, and we giggled at all the bad hair, combovers, helmet hair and strange characters wherever we went. And if you don’t think that these things make for a tight friendship, then I don’t know what does. It was an outstanding week.

Just hanging out in Nantes together, eating ice cream served up by Clem.

And we baked. We have posted what we made together. Yet as true Mudflatters, we watched in joy and fascination as the Governor of Alaska left office (I think you know my politics) and decided that the most perfectly appropriate something had to be made. Together. In honor of both Mudflats and the now-former Gov. I mean, after all, if it wasn’t for her we wouldn’t have ever met, now would we?

Cooking together like Kaye and Eve. Classic!

We batted around ideas, racked our brains for hours, for the perfect Going Away Party treat to offer our friends in celebration of this strange political victory, deliberating between Egg On Your Face Word Salad, Half-Baked Alaska and various other dishes, and finally settled on these wonderfully gooey, chocolaty goodies. We now offer up Nutty Moose Nuggets and a thank you for AKM not only for her fabulous blog, both amusing and informative, but for bringing us all together.

Adapted from Better Homes and Gardens New Cookbook

6 oz (180 g) semi-sweet chocolate, either chips or chopped (we used Lindt Dessert 70%)
1 oz (30 g) unsweetened chocolate, chopped (we used Lindt Dessert 85%)
2 Tbs (30 g) unsalted butter, softened
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla
2/3 cup (135 g) sugar
¼ cup (30 g) flour
¼ tsp baking powder
1 cup (100 g) coarsely chopped pecans

The two chocolates.

Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C). Line 2 cookie sheets with parchment or oven paper.

Place the chopped chocolates in a medium-sized bowl in the microwave (or over a pan of simmering but not boiling water) and heat gently until almost melted.

Remove the chocolate from the heat while there are still pieces or it may over cook.

Add the softened butter and stir vigorously until all the remaining bits of chocolate and the butter are thoroughly melted, combined and smooth.

Add the vanilla and the two eggs to the chocolate/butter mixture and whisk or beat together (by hand) until smooth.

Combine the dry ingredients in a small bowl. Add to the chocolate mixture and stir until completely combined and smooth.

Fold in the chopped nuts.

Drop by rounded teaspoons onto the prepared cookie sheets and bake (I bake one batch at a time in my tiny French oven) for 8 to 10 minutes until just barely set in the center but no longer gooey. Remove from the oven and carefully lift off and remove to a metal cooling rack to cool.

Ok, how funny is that? Vile, maybe, but funny. And oh so good!

These rich, dark, fudgy cookies with the crunch of nuts are the perfect treat to have with a cold glass of milk or a hot coffee as you are sitting in your jammies in front of your computer, watching Alan Partridge on dvd or (yes we did) Tropic Thunder.


Leah said...

looks yumm!! and there's nothing i like more than having a good cookie with my coffee. Thanks for the recipe! Looks like you had such a lovely time with your friend.


Kitchen Jezebel said...

These should be sent to Alaska accompanied by a thank you note from all of us thanking Caribou Barbie for bringing us together.

Does this recipe work well with Ex-Lax? ;)

Jamie said...

@Leah: this is a very good cookie if you like them dark and rich and brownie-like.

@Kitchen Jezebel: You are awful! :-) And maybe I'll send her a box - I am sure it will be easy to find the address of that house she lives in.

Kitchen Jezebel said...

Hence the Jezebel, ma chere` ... ;)

Heavenly Housewife said...

How wonderful! Unfortunately I don't have any close female friends, but my hubby is my partner in crime. We met on the internet also :). Hubby, like your brownie, is quite dark and rich too LOL!!!

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

Mmmhhh, to die for! Those cookies are irresistible!



Donna-FFW said...

What a touching tribute to your week together.

These cookies would rate so highly in my book!!

Reeni♥ said...

The story of your friendship is so sweet! Love the moose nuggets - so rich and chocolaty - heavenly treats.

Chef E said...

I actually cooked with one of my best friends when I was in Texas and she likes to bake, so we made great partners in crime...I could use some of these cookies right about now!

Anonymous said...

Hiya Dahhhhling! That's a great post - I have a grin from ear to ear :-)

Love Clare (Anonymooose today I think - not my computer) xxxx

Sophie said...

What a lovely & funny post this is, Jamie! hahahahahahahahaha,...

The drop cookies look so yummie!!

Elra said...

Your cookies look really scrumptious Jaime!

the ungourmet said...

How wonderful that the two of you were able to meet face to face and that you got along so wonderfully!

You cookies look very rich, gooey, and delicious!

Zita said... the old pics... and the cookie look super delish :)

asiangrrl said...

From another 'Flatter, let me say how much I enjoyed this entry, Jamie. I have to agree that for all the bad things the ex-guv from Alaska has done, the bright, shiny spot of her reign has been AKM and the 'flats bringing us all together. I salute you, my Moose gal pals! And, of course, I salute these fabulous moose nuggets.

Katherine Aucoin said...

What a wonderful post and your cookies look so rich and tasty!

My Carolina Kitchen said...

Gorgeous drop cookies. My mind is going crazy thinking of all of the crazy things Lucy and Ethel did. A true match made in comedy heaven.

Christina Kim said...

that chocolate looks soooooooooo dark, and sooo rich, and sooooo luxurious!!! and those little cookies are so cute! i can only imagine how amazing they must be!

Junglefrog said...

Isn't it fantastic that you can meet someone through the internet and become really good friends? I love stuff like that.
Those cookies look.... eh... well a bit funny, but nevertheless tasty! lol

burpandslurp said...

Hee hee! I've never thought of it this way...great women duos! they certainly have the most fun!
I'm glad you had such a great day with your other duo!

Sippity Sup said...

Dark rich and brownie like is a very apt description for this yummy cookie. GREG

♥Deeba @Passionate About Baking♥ said...

The two of you are precious! What a pair! And the moose nuggets are better than any cookies I wanna bite into. I ♥ dark, rich, brownie type! Pack them in with the cherry pitter hun! xoxoxo

Brisbane hotels said...

Wow, yummy! I love and I use to bake brownies. I always try new recipes that I read. I will surely try this one.

annahojnilede said...

i tried making these cookies and followed everything in your recipe but i end up with a very thin batter and when i tried baking them they became flat and spread out too much.any suggestions on how to make them more cookie like?

Jamie said...

@annahojnilede: Oh wow I don't know. You can see how I made mine and the consistency all the way through on the step-by-step photos. Are you sure you added all the ingredients and in the right quantity?

annahojnilede said...

yes i did..i followed everything in every looks like ur batter too but in the oven it just went flat.i even added more flour to add some body to it but it still turned out flat

Jamie said...

@annahojnilede: Hmmm I think I am going to have to make them again. I just looked at the recipe I based mine on and it says that, in fact, the batter should be thin which surprises me that mine came out so thick. Maybe you can chill the batter before baking - I do that when I make chocolate chip cookies because mine tend to flatten too much in the oven.

annahojnilede said...

alright thanks :))


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