Saturday, February 6, 2010

curry, cookies, and cataclysm, oh my!

So.... 12-18 inches of snow ended up being 28.5 inches of snow when it finally stopped, sometime this afternoon. When I woke up today, the city was covered with snow up to your knees and it was still snowing and hard! Big, fluffy flakes danced chaotically outside the window, eventually descending to take their place with their peers along the streets and sidewalks of Philadelphia. To give you an idea of the accumulation plus drifts from the intense wind sweeping the snow hither and yon throughout the day, my car is black and my husband could not find it without using the key-fob to make it make noise.

I heated up some leftover "Spicy" Peanut Soup for lunch and tried to find it sufficient fuel to be productive on my snow day. I did call my students, just to be sure common sense had not eluded any of them and they weren't planning to hitch up the sled-dogs and come to their lessons. One mother answered the phone with, "You know you didn't have to call, right?" Then I began the process of eliminating the new pile of months-old magazines that built up, while doing two loads of laundry that desperately needed doing.

Ordinarily, my streets would never see a plow, but apparently the city made an exception considering the apocalyptic conditions outside. I'll tell you - they don't mess around when it comes to snow removal. I had the privilege of watching Dueling Backhoes dividing and conquering my neighborhood streets, all the while wondering how likely they were to inadvertently damage my car or make the digging out process even more difficult. Fortunately for me, Mister couldn't bear the thought of me breaking my poor twisted back trying to unearth my car, so he went out after dinner and did his best. I'm not sure how I feel about him coming back and saying "well, that's as dug out as it's going to get," but I'm glad I didn't have to do it.

So, dinner was Chickpea Apple Curry from my dear Martha Stewart. I always mess up the cayenne and render it almost impossible for me to eat so I thought this time I would substitute harissa for the cayenne. Unfortunately, I forgot that I thought that until after the whole melange was already simmering away, with its stingy pinch of cayenne. It came out alright though. Actually, since I didn't have any cumin, I substituted a teaspoon of curry powder and it really made a difference in the savory character of the curry - I may have to always make it this way! Mister was good-natured about the soygurt I mixed in. He compensated by adding hot sauce.
Since I was so very grateful to my dear hubby for finding and unearthing my car and since it was such fantastic baking weather, I decided to make Mexican Chocolate Snickerdoodles from Vegan Cookies Invade Your Cookie Jar.
I have been obsessed with making these cookies since they did a few preview recipes on The Post Punk Kitchen blog. I love snickerdoodles. I love chocolate. What could be better than chocolate snickerdoodles?

Mister and I would probably disagree on the answer to that. I think he's pretty happy about the cayenne pepper that makes up the Mexican part of the title. I, on the other hand, could definitely do without it. The recipe calls for 1/2 teaspoon and I said to myself, "oh HELL no." I cut the amount in half, and when I had gingerly sprinkled half of that 1/4 teaspoon into the batter, I couldn't make myself put the rest in. As I sit here typing, munching on my cookies, I am really glad I had the foresight and self-knowledge to cut the cayenne by 75% - I wouldn't have been able to eat them. With 1/8 of a teaspoon of cayenne in the entire batter, which made almost 2 dozen generously-sized cookies, my face is actually starting to color and I can feel the heat in my cheeks.

Aside from my mouth being all on fire, though, they're really good cookies!

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