Thursday, October 1, 2009

THE NEIMAN MARCUS COOKIE

FRIENDSHIP AND A GUEST POST

I have spoken about the friends I am so grateful to have made through food blogging and about my Blogga Sistahs (though there is a brother or two as well and you know who you are), as we call ourselves, who have come to my rescue in this most difficult of times. They have sent virtual hug after virtual hug, they have let me talk about the hurt, the pain, theyhave made me laugh and lightened the burden. And a couple of the dearest have swooped in and offered to keep my blog going while I am in Florida. Beautiful Hilda of Saffron & Blueberry is one and Deeba of Passionate About Baking is another. Deeba is a true soul mate, we so completely understand each other from the goings on in our daily lives to our baking successes and woes right down to our emotional rhythms. We share a wicked sense of humor and a certain goofiness that makes us us. We connect on all levels and she has become a true friend, kind and generous and making me laugh - often at myself - every day. Here is her guest post:

“The most beautiful discovery true friends make is that they can grow separately without growing apart.”
Elisabeth Foley



I'm a bit nervous to be doing a guest post for Jamie, my dear dear friend, who I met over a few tweets not very long ago. Jamie who writes in a style so unique, so enchanting & so 'head-nodding' is someone precious I am glad to have met. Continents separate us, but thanks to twitter, we are virtually stepping into each others lives. What brought a bunch of us closer together was the Mac Attack, that Jamie steered, almost magically & breathlessly.

I am honoured to be doing a guest post for her beautiful blog, but under circumstances that are not the best. Jamie recently lost her beloved brother Michael, tragically to Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis or Lou Gehrig's Disease before she could meet him, in October, when she was due to fly in. She is in the States now for a while, keeping her Mum company, sharing memories and lightening the atmosphere in true Jamie style.

I saw these cookies at Brown Eyed Baker a few days ago & my first thought was how lovely and comforting they looked. Said to be the famed Neiman Marcus cookies, off a recipe that has been making the rounds via e-mail for ages, they have rave reviews. The difference in these cookies is the way the oats are added. They are ground into oat flour and give the cookie a lovely texture, more wholesome than the plain flour chocolate chips cookies, yet lighter than regular oat cookies. I think they bridge the gap perfectly & I had to make some for Jamie! I hope you find comfort in these!

You might wonder if they have lavender in them. No they don't actually! I added a sprig of lavender to the pictures because I've begun to associate my one & only precious sprig of lavender with this wonderful girl. She put violet sugar to such great use during our twitter mac attack, turning out macarons after macarons like a pro, that I could only gape. My sprig of lavender reminds me of the violet she used!
Our very own mac queen, these are for you! Must admit I contemplated a batch of macs for the guest post, but my previous misadventures loomed large in front of me! Opted for these instead!

The Neiman Marcus Cookie as adapted from recipe at Brown Eyed Baker
Makes about 48 (2½-inch) cookies
Ingredients:2½ cups rolled oats
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup brown sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1½ cups dark chocolate chips


1½ cups chopped walnuts
Method:
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
2. Blend the oats in a food processor or blender to a fine powder. In a medium bowl whisk together the blended oats with the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
3. In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream together the butter and both sugars until light and fluffy, 3-4 minutes. Scrape down the sides and beat in the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in the pure vanilla extract. On low speed gradually mix in the flour mixture, beating just until incorporated. With a rubber spatula fold in the chocolate chips and walnuts.
4. Roll the dough into 2-ounce balls (or about 2 heaping tablespoonfuls worth) and place about 2 inches apart on the baking sheets. Bake in the preheated oven for 12 minutes. Cookies should be lightly brown and set on the outside but still look a little undone in the middle. That’s okay – they will finish setting up after you remove them from the oven. Let cool completely and store in an airtight container.

41 comments:

Happy cook said...

A beautiful post, Deeba as so well written about the wonderful frindship you two share.
Love the cookies, and not to mention those beautiful pictures.

Sophie said...

Deeba, I so love your style & pictures,...they always make me want to eat the lot,...

Lovely cookies!! MMMMMMMMMM,....

The Cooking Ninja said...

What a great post and what a beautiful friendship formed via web, reminding me how I met my hub. ;)

Love your cookies - beautiful. Yes I thot lavender was part of the ingredient. :p

Debbie said...

How lovely...I adore the photos...and will have to try the recipe though the presentation adds so much :)
Jamie is lucky to have such wonderful friends to help her out in good times as well as tough times.

Hilda said...

They're beautiful Deeba! and I love the lavender sprig, lavender is so lovely isn't it, smells good, makes things taste nice. I can totally see why it makes you think of Jamie.

Muneeba said...

Gorgeous photos as always, Deeba! Your composition is always perfect.

Jamie, if you're reading this ... I'm really sorry for your loss .. God give you strength, girl.
Come back to your blogger buddies whenever you're ready .. we'll be here :)

Barbara Bakes said...

What a lovely tribute and an even lovelier guest post! Someone should be paying you for those pretty pictures!

Chow and Chatter said...

oh wow what a lovely post you guys are so sweet, I have a tear in my eye great cookies so happy you became friends, Rebecca

Deeba @Passionate About Baking said...

Many HUGS to you my friend. Love your introduction...and love your style!! xoxo

Fuji Mama said...

Beautiful post and beautiful cookies! Isn't the blogosphere an amazing and wonderful place?

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

Wonderful! Deeba is very talented!

Cheers,

Rosa

Asha @ FSK said...

Lovely post, Deeba! and very sweet of you to fill in for Jamie :)

Mary said...

What a thoughtful and lovely post. Your cookies look delicious.

Jamie said...

Deeba, thank you for this wonderful post and thank you for your friendship. If Hilda could come over with a coconut marble yogurt cake and you could come over with a box of these perfect, gorgeous cookies, all would be all right. ((hugs))

MeetaK said...

How wonderfully true! Friendships are something one should always cherish. Deeba these cookies are grand!

Heavenly Housewife said...

Great post, yummy cookies :D, good friends. What esle does a girl need, I ask you?

Katy ~ said...

Dear and beautiful friends, delicious food shared, enrich life.

Thank you for sharing.

girlichef said...

Oh, what a wonderful guest post :) Dear friends are a blessing, indeed...and the cookies sound delicious!

Natashya KitchenPuppies said...

What a beautiful post.
It is amazing how close we can become to people around the world through food blogging.
You are very fortunate to have found each other to share both laughter and tears.

La Table De Nana said...

Very thoughtful and sweet..Kind Regards,Monique

Anonymous said...

I love these cookies-it is my favorite recipe for cc chip cookies. are these your photos they are great.

shaz said...

Sorry to hear about your loss Jamie.

Deeba, thanks to you I've now found another lovely blog to read, and these cookies sound like a food version of a *hug*

Cinnamon Girl aka Reeni♥ said...

How sweet! The cookies are so pretty. I bet they are delicious treats.

LoveFeast Table said...

Lovely post! One of the joys of life is to share our kitchens, tables, and lives with each other!
Jamie, our thoughts are with you and your family. Much love to you during this time!
Chris Ann & Kristin

scraps said...

Jamie,
What great friends you have, such special friendships. I love reading and sharing all your blogs.
Keep the faith, it will get your through.
another blog friend,
Glenda

Elra said...

What a delicious cookies. Yes, I know Deeba, she is so talented baker.

asiangrrl said...

Deeba, what a lovely post, and what gorgeous cookies. The sprig of lavender adds a wonderful touch.

SKM said...

Hugs to Deeba and Jamie! I adore BOTH of you. :)

Irishgirl said...

Jamie, I am thinking of you. What wonderful friends you have made through your blog.

lisaiscooking said...

Lovely guest post, and delicious cookies! I'm going to have to try the addition of oat flour.

Aparna said...

Deeba your cookies look gorgeous and now I'm eyeing that lavender! :)
True Jamie. nothing quite like good friends especially when one needs them the most.

Chef E said...

Wow what beautiful photos and how great she found someone so worthy of her own talents!

the ungourmet said...

It's so nice when friends are there to support each other in difficult times. Life can be rough can't it.

These cookies are lovely. I love the lavender.

Junglefrog said...

Those are gorgeous cookies Deeba and a beautiful post too!

5 Star Foodie said...

The cookies are scrumptious and the pictures are gorgeous! Thank you for such a beautiful post!

FabFrugalFood said...

Wow! Such a beautiful blog - and this post makes me want to get over my baking phobia!

Donna
fabfrugalfood.com

The Cooking Photographer said...

Deeba is a great guest post! :) :) :)

And Hi Jamie! Hope all is well. I know I haven't been around much. I've been outside playing squeezing the last bit of summer out.

MaryMoh said...

wow...that looks so fabulous. All the photos look so beautiful. I would love to eat a dozen of that while typing away.

bethany (Dirty Kitchen Secrets) said...

Beautifully written. The cookies look so delicious. Not a crumb in site.

Juan David Cardona said...

ça l'air très bon!!!

Chez Us said...

Beautiful post, Deeba, I am sure Jamie is touched by your kind words & tasty recipe!

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