Dessert Uncategorized

Make Michelle Obama’s Award Winning Cookies for Your Next Holiday Cookie Party

    3-Chip Cookie
    Michelle Obama's 3-Chip Cookie

    In October 2012, Family Circle Magazine conducted its 6th cookie bakeoff between candidates for first lady. As in most years, the winner of the cookie contest also won the White House. It was close. Michelle only won by 287 votes. Luckily, her husband’s margin was wider.

    For the contest, Michelle Obama submitted a recipe authored by Eleanor ‘Mama Kaye’ Wilson,  the godmother of her two children. Interestingly, this recipe has an extra stick of crisco as compared to the traditional Nestle Tollhouse recipe. An extra stick! Michelle has set aside her usual approach to food with this indulgent cookie. But hey, that’s fine once in a while, right?

    The best part about these cookies, is the subtle hint of mint chocolate brought in by the crushed Andes Creme De Menthe Thins. Since I couldn’t include the nuts in this recipe (I work at a nut-free school), I increased the overall chip content leaning in favor of the semi-sweet chips and playing down the other two slightly. It was great.

    Make these for your next Holiday Cookie Party. Just sprinkle some red and green sprinkles on top and you’ll be in business.


    Mama Kaye’s White and Dark Chocolate Chip Cookies

    Makes 5 dozen cookies
    Prep: 15 minutes
    Bake at 375° for 12 minutes per batch

    2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
    1 teaspoon baking soda
    1 teaspoon salt
    1 cup (2 sticks) unsaltedbutter, softened
    1 stick Crisco butter-flavored solid vegetable shortening
    3/4 cup granulated sugar
    3/4 cup packed brown sugar
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    2 eggs
    1 cup each white chocolate chips, milk chocolate chips and mint chocolate chips (or Andes mint pieces)
    2 cups chopped walnuts


    1. Heat oven to 375°.

    2. Whisk together flour, baking soda and salt in a small bowl. In a large bowl with an electric mixer, cream butter, vegetable shortening, granulated sugar, brown sugar and vanilla extract.

    3. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition.

    4. On low speed, beat in flour mixture. By hand, stir in white and milk chocolate chips, mint chips and walnuts.

    5. Drop rounded tablespoons of dough onto un-greased baking sheets.

    6. Bake at 375° for 10 to 12 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on baking sheets for 5 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely.

    Michelle Obama's Cookie Recipe
    Michelle Obama's Cookie Recipe
      Casseroles Rice and other Grains Sides Uncategorized Vegetarian

      Roasted, Stuffed Acorn Squash: Barley-Bulgur Pilaf with Caramelized Apple

        Stuffed Acorn Squash

        Here is a dish elegant enough for Thanksgiving or an autumn dinner party, and hearty enough to serve as a vegetarian (vegan) main dish. Favorite fall flavors of apple, squash, and nuts come together in this healthy, whole grain pilaf. Feel free to substitute your favorite grains. Try it with millet, farro, wheatberries or wild rice. Even lentils would be a lovely addition. Substitute fresh sage or thyme for the parsley, if you prefer. Substitute pear for the apple. Try it in a pumpkin. The possibilities are endless.

        Roasted, Stuffed Acorn Squash: Barley-Bulgur Pilaf with Caramelized Apple and Almonds
        Prep time
        Cook time
        Total time
        Fall flavors come together in this hearty (vegan) side dish - elegant enough for a dinner party, yummy enough for any night.
        Recipe type: Hearty Vegetarian Main Dish or Side Dish
        Serves: 4
        • 4 Medium Acorn Squash (I chose a variety that was a lovely orange color, with smooth skin but any variety will do)
        • 2 Tbsp olive oil
        • 1 medium onion, diced
        • 2 cups vegetable stock
        • ¼ cup pearled barley
        • ¼ cup brown rice
        • ¼ cup bulgur
        • 1 apple (on the sweeter side, like Honeycrisp or Braeburn), sliced thinly
        • 2 Tbsp chopped almonds, toasted
        • ¼ cup dried apricots, sliced thinly
        • ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
        • salt and pepper to taste
        1. Preheat oven to 400˚F. Cut each acorn squash in half and scoop out the seeds. Place on a rimmed baking sheet and add water to the pan so that the squash skins don't get scorched. Add a little dab of butter to each acorn squash. Bake for about 45 minutes to an hour until the squash are cooked through, but not collapsing.
        2. While the acorn squash are baking, prepare the pilaf. In a medium saucepan, heat the 2 Tbsp of olive oil over medium heat. Add the chopped onion and sautée until onions have softened and started to brown, about 8 minutes. Pour in 2 cups of vegetable stock and bring to a boil. Add the pearl barley, reduce heat and cover. The pearl barley will simmer for a total of 45-55 minutes. After 10 minutes of cooking, add the brown rice. Continue to simmer, covered on low. When 15 minutes remain, add the bulgur.
        3. In a separate frying pan, over medium heat, heat a bit of olive oil. Then add the apple slices, chopped almonds, and apricots. Toss to coat and sautée for a 3 minutes or until apples start to soften and brown. Remove from heat. Preheat oven to 375˚F.
        4. Once the grains are cooked through, drain any remaining liquid and toss in the apple mixture. Toss in the chopped parsley, reserving some for garnishing later. Season with salt and pepper.
        5. Divide the mixture evenly between the acorn squashes. Place the stuffed squashes on a baking sheet and bake in the oven for 15 minutes. Remove and garnish with the remaining fresh parsley and serve immediately.


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