Weekend Kitchen Adventures + A Cookie Recipe

21 Jan

Historically, I’ve not had many opportunities to say “this was a really good weekend for me in the kitchen.” But this was a really good weekend for me in the kitchen. {grin}

After ten years of marriage, I finally mastered the art of cooking green beans the way my husband likes them. There’s a bit of skill involved in cooking them the country way – the way his grandmother and mother have always made them. He likes them very soft, with at least a hint (or two or three) of bacon grease in them. And, I have to admit, they taste pretty good that way. (But, Savvy Sister, if you’re reading this, I also like them roasted with just a splash of olive oil on them! {grin})

Ya’ll. I have tortured some green beans in the past. I have over salted these things, I have burned them so that they stuck to the bottom of the pan, I have cooked them so long they came out tasting like water, but not at all like green beans or even bacon grease for that matter, I have basically stunk at this one little thing. Until now.

I do believe the Lord blessed me this weekend with a vision of how cook them. {grin} I cooked them exactly that way and, unsolicited, Barry said, “the green beans are good.” And then I tasted them and thought: Hallelujah!! I conquered the green beans! Some day, maybe I’ll tell you my technique, but I’m sure most of you have already perfected this age-old method of cooking vegetables until they don’t taste like vegetables. :)

In addition to the raging success with the green beans (ha!), I made a cake for my boss’ birthday today and it turned out great! It was a hummingbird cake, which I love to eat, but had never made before. I’m happy to say it turned out quite nicely. Happy Birthday, Andrea!! You have blessed my life in so many ways and I am grateful for you, your compassionate heart, and your desire to help those around you excel.


Once I started smelling victory in the kitchen, I had to keep going. So I made some of my stepdaughter’s favorite cookies: No Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookies. They’re so easy to make, and I’ve made them before, but they often turn out a little too dry or don’t set up as firmly as they should, so I’ve tinkered with the original recipe a bit and I think I landed on success because these were just right!

Here’s the recipe for the No Bake cookies. They are great for an after school snack or after dinner treat because they are quick and easy to make. It’s a great recipe for the kids or grandkids to help make, too.

No Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookies


  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 stick butter
  • 4 generous tablespoons cocoa
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 1/2 cups oatmeal (if you don’t use nuts, below, you may want to add another 1/4 to 1/2 cup of oatmeal)
  • 1/2 cup chopped nuts (optional)


Boil sugar, butter, cocoa and milk for at least two minutes, but no longer than three. Remove from heat and add peanut butter stirring until mostly incorporated. Then add the vanilla, oatmeal and nuts and stir well.

Let cool in pan for one to two minutes, but no longer or it will thicken too much.

Drop by spoonful on parchment paper to cool.

We love to eat them with a spoon once they’ve cooled enough to put them in your mouth without scorching your tongue and the roof of your mouth. Don’t you hate it when you do that?? The pain lasts for days as a nagging reminder that you couldn’t wait just a few more minutes for something to cool. It’s a cruel lesson in patience. :)



One Response to “Weekend Kitchen Adventures + A Cookie Recipe”

  1. painterfrances January 21, 2013 at 2:02 pm #

    Bet your green bean recipe involves a crock pot and chicken broth! FKW

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