If it’s a Pizookie, you are family!

A Pizookie is not just your average, ordinary, everyday dessert, it is an experience.

The first time I heard about the Pizookie (pronounced pa zoo key), was from my dear friend Tiffany. She talked about it as if was some kind of forbidden love affair

I felt so honored when, one day she brought me a batch of her famous Pizookie cookie dough. And, Ohhh,  let me tell you sista (or brotha), It was beyond delicious.

I have since learned that a Pizookie can be just about any cookie dough, spread over nearly an entire surface, forming a large, beautiful circle (don’t laugh, to me cookie dough is beautiful). Feel free to use whatever baking surface you can get your hands on. Perhaps a pizza stone, baking pan, cookie sheet, pie tin, or even tin foil (if you must). Once baked, it is served piping hot with vanilla ice cream on top. No scooping into individual portions, it is what it is…One big cookie, and as many spoons as there are people.

Now keep in mind that, a Pizookie is not meant to be enjoyed alone. Sharing your freshly baked Pizookie is a special experience. Trust me, it tastes best when it’s shared with those you love (or want to love). You may be tempted to eat the whole darn thing by yourself, and…. you may even have the ability to do so. However, sharing your Pizookie is essential in order to complete the fun, family & friendship experience that comes with your monster of a cookie.

Life , love, &  friendship does not get any sweeter than this!

Bon Appetite

Micki’s Healthier, Yummy, & Fun Pizookie

This dessert recipe is made using heart happy olive oil in the place of butter. Whole wheat pastry flour and oats replace the white flour usually found in a treat like this…Although made healthy, I believe you will agree that this Pizookie is as delicious as it is fun to eat!

Besides, who says healthy food has to taste like healthy food?

1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour  or whole wheat pastry flour

1 cup quick oats

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking soda

2/3 cup pure or mild flavored EVOO

¼ cup sugar

1 ¼ cups brown sugar

2 eggs

2 tablespoons milk

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 cup semi-sweet  or dark chocolate chips

Low- fat vanilla bean ice cream (optional- but not for me)

Preheat oven to 375°F. Spray your choice of baking pan with olive oil or olive oil cooking spray.

Sift together the flour, salt, and baking soda. Set aside.

In mixer bowl, add the sugar and brown sugar. Mix medium speed until smooth and well blended.

Add eggs, milk, and vanilla. Mix again on medium speed until well blended.

Add flour mixture to moist mixture and blend until thoroughly combined. Fold n the chocolate chips

Place all of the cookie dough right smack dab in the center of you baking pan.. Bake for 15 minutes or until golden brown.

Top that piping hot Pizookie with ice cream and start enjoying!!!

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A Few Useless and Not So Useless Bits of Olive Oil Information

A Few Useless And Not So Useless Facts About Olive Oil
just in case you were wondering…
 
• Olive oil is medically proven to be good for your heart and good for your overall health.
• Olive oil aids in lowering your LDL cholesterol (mine has dropped 100 points since making the switch to olive oil)
• Olive oil is not a genetically modified food!
• Olive oil is great for lactose intolerant people.
• Olive oil does not contain trans fatty acids (bad for you).
• Olive oil is not hydrogenated (bad for you).
• Olive oil can be kept in your food storage.
• Olive oil can be stored in your refrigerator.
• Olive oil can be frozen.
• Olive oil is technically a fruit juice.
• Olive oil is pressed and not chemically extracted.
• Olive oil is a great massage oil.
• Olive oil was called “the great therapeutic” by Hippocrates.
• Olive oil is produced by over 450 companies in California and Texas.
• Olive oil is high in healthy monounsaturated fats (good for you).
• Olive oil tastes great in traditional desserts (come see for yourself).
• Olive oil makes your heart and tummy smile.
• Olive Oil Desserts have 1/3 less fat and calories.
• Olive Oyl was Popeye’s girlfriend.
• Olive oil has so many beneficial uses, I will need to continue this list on another post!!!

And there will be another post, oh yes….. another post indeed…..

Have a sweet day,

Micki

Buy a copy Of Olive Oil Desserts Today!!!

 

The Proper Care and Storage of your Olive Oil –

Olive oil is your friend and must not be treated like all other oils. Olive oil can be fragile, yet well worth the effort to keep it fresh. After cooking or baking with your well preserved olive oil, you won’t regret taking a little extra time to keep it fresh.

Olive oil producers all over the globe are well aware that is that once olive oil is produced, it must be packaged immediately to avoid oxidization (exposure to air). When olive oil is exposed to air and light, it begins to become rancid.  If you have ever tasted rancid olive oil, it is a taste you will not soon forget. For this reason, fresh pressed olive oil is  bottled right a way, and stored in a dark glass container or metal tin.

Olive oil which is stored in unopened tins will remain fresh for up to 5 years.

If you are planning on using  your opened olive oil within 3 months, it is acceptable to store it in  an airtight container, away from light, and at room temperature.

You may also store your olive oil in the refrigerator. However, please note that sedimentation occurs at temperatures lower than 37 degrees Fahrenheit, and your olive oil will begin to harden (it looks like little clouds). However, it does disappear when the oil returns to room temperature.

Freezing olive oil works well and does not destroy the healthy benefits associated with it. However, be sure and use some of your oil before freezing because expansion may cause your olive oil bottle to crack (or your tin to bulge). When ready to use, place on the counter and bring back to room temperature, it’s just that simple.

It is important to check the “best before” or “bottled on” date on your olive oil label.
Unlike a fine wine, the quality of olive oil does not improve with time. Use your fresh pressed oil within 6 months.

Therefore, you see…. storing your olive oil is simple and fun! Enjoy using olive oil in all of your cooking and baking; it will make your heart smile!!!

Better Eating For 2009 And A Bran Muffin

As much as I enjoyed the break, I am excited to get back to posting food stuff again. Did you know that many experts in the food industry are saying that 2009 will bring in a comeback of comfort food?  That’s right, out with all of the fancy foods and in with the traditional old fashioned foods. Just in time for the release of my cookbook.

Why not add a little bran into the new year

Why not add a little bran into the new year ?

 

Wow! I cannot believe how fast time can fly by. I hope you enjoyed the Christmas season as much as our family did.

Food, cooking, and sharing food are so much a part of our lives. My question is, why give up the foods you love the most if you don’t have to? I know that this is the start of a new year, and you probably made a resolution or two regarding health, exercise, and diet. If so,  good for you. I know that I am vowing to do better in 2009 . The cool thing is, comfort food can be delicious and healthy. And please, please, whatever you do, don’t give up dessert. It would make me very sad ;(

A little story:

I ran into a friend of mine that I have not seen for a few months. I wouldn’t say she was too overweight before, but when I saw her, she looked great! Not to big, not to small, she was glowing, her weight was down (lost 40lbs), and she said that she felt great. When I asked her what she was doing to lose weight, her response was something different than what I would usually from someone who has lost more than a few pounds.  She assured me that she has not been on the latest diet, she was not taking HCG injections (I am very concerned about these), and not drinking slim fast instead of eating. She lost weight and got healthy over time by changing a few things and also by lowering the amount she was eating. When she wound eat out, she would normally eat a whole burrito. Then she started asking herself, “do I really need to eat the whole burrito, or can I just stop at eating half?” Just by being honest with herself about what she was eating, and how much she was eating, she could make some small adjustments. And those small adjustments added up to better health, a slimmer body, and an increase in energy. She did give up soda completely, and although it was diet soda she was drinking, she felt that it was still contributing to poor health and her weight being higher than she wanted (lots of sodium). Our little visit inspired me to share a few tips that I am hoping will help everyone in the new year.  

I am sure you have heard most all of this before, but I always enjoy a little reminder here and there, and I hope you will too.

Drink water…. Lots of water: It is best to drink 8-12 ounces 15-30 minutes prior to a meal. Not only is water great for your body, it also fills you up, which helps to curb overeating.

Share a whole portion of your meal with someone else: If you can’t find someone to split a portion with you, then package it up and eat it for another meal. I use to live in Japan, and always noticed how small a meal size was. It was funny to return home to America because one portion in the USA would feed 3-4 people in Japan.

Cut down or give up soda:  I love a great fizzy drink. I don’t know what it is about a little co2 in our drinks, but it just feels great going down. If you don’t like soda, then you are a step ahead of a lot of folks. I love to drink herb tea mixed with juice. If you must have soda, how about limiting it a bit more or mixing plain soda water it with juice?

Cut down on prepackaged and fast food: This is a tuffy for many. The problem with these types of food is that a great deal of them are not food at all. They are packed with trans fatty acids, which are directly linked to diseases of the heart and colon.  Also, try not to be fooled by packaging and labels. When a package reads something like “natural flavor”,  unfortunately our darling FDA allows many non-foods to be called natural. If a product has no expiration date or one that is one year from the date you are reading it, it is s good guess that there is not much food in it. If you must eat fast, look for places which have fresher foods and an open kitchen. It’s nice see how your food is prepared.

Try new foods: It’s fun to try something new. I have a friend and her children hated vegetables. One evening, I was making asparagus and asked if they would like to try some. They loved it! All I did was lightly stir-fry it in olive oil, sprinkle a clove of garlic, and a few Italian seasonings. Now their mom serves them  asparagus, and they love it. Why not set a goal to try a new (real) food once a week? Be simple and creative, it’s fun.

 Eat Fiber: Fiber fills you up and keeps you feeling satisfied longer. When possible, check labels and notice how many grams of fiber are in your food. Men need about 30 to 35 grams of fiber a day and Women need 25-30 grams a day. The average American Diet (fast food) contains about 10-15 grams of fiber per day. Some foods which are high in fiber might surprise you…. ½ avocado- 6 grams, 1 cup raspberries- 8 grams  1 medium pear with skin -6 grams, 1 cup split peas -16 grams !. To add a little fiber, we have been known throw a bit of wheat germ in our pancake mix and not even our guests notice.

Okay this is long enough. As my contribution to help you in your start for the new year, I thought you might enjoy my bran muffin recipe. Bran muffins are not just for breakfast anymore!

This recipe makes about 55-60 delicious full size bran muffins. Make as many as you like, then store the remainder of the mix in the refrigerator in an airtight container. It keeps for up to 6 weeks.

And remember…..Whatever the question, dessert is the answer!!!

Happy Baking!

Micki

Bran Muffin Recipe from  Olive Oil Desserts

2 cups      

4 cups      

5 tsp         

2 cups      

2/3 cups   

2 tsp         

1 quart     

2 cups      

5 cups       

1  tsp        

 

boiling hot water

all bran cereal

baking soda

granulated sugar

pure olive oil

pure vanilla extract

low-fat buttermilk

40 % bran cereal

flour ( I love to use whole wheat pastry flour)

salt

 

 

 

Preparation

 

1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Line muffin tins with

paper liners or coat with olive oil cooking spray.

2. In a medium size mixing bowl, add boiling

water, all-bran, and baking soda. Mix until all

ingredients are moistened and set aside.

3. And in a large mixing bowl add sugar, olive

oil, vanilla & butter extracts, buttermilk, and

bran flakes. Blend together until well mixed.

4. Add water/bran mixture and blend. Fold in flour

and salt, mixing until completely moistened.

5. Fill muffin tins ⅔ full and bake for 15~20

minutes. Cool on wire racks.

 

Keep unused batter in the refrigerator for up to six weeks

 

 

 

Chocolate, My Heavenly Sin

    

Okay, here’s the deal. If there is no chocolate in Heaven, I’m not interested in going. I adore chocolate. I have never met a chocolate that was not my instant best friend.

The other day I was at a gathering and the subject of chocolate came up. Each lady started talking about their favorite chocolate. It seems like most everyone has a personal reason to eat or drink the stuff. Here are just a few thoughts some have had when it comes to their chocolate …..Chocolate in happy times- A day without chocolate is a day without sunshine– Chocolate in sad times- Nobody know the truffles I’ve seen.- Out of work- Will work for chocolate-Desperate times- Put the chocolate in the bag and nobody gets hurt. When you feel like giving up!- I would give up chocolate, but I’m not a quitter. And sexy times ( I’m not touching that one).

Rarely have I met a woman that is not delighted by the mere thought of chocolate in any way, shape, or form. One woman at the gathering piped in and very boldly stated, “I hate chocolate!!!”. We all just looked at her in shock as if to say something like “I don’t think we can be your friend”. When the shock wore off, we all just went on with our chocolate talk, and she became silent, as though she was the only Republican in a room of Democrats. Ahhh, the power of chocolate.

Occasionally I wear a perfume by the name of Angel. And when I wear it, I am often told how wonderful  I smell. Come to find out that the base scent for Angel perfume is …chocolate!

Did you know that there 20 different kinds of cacao trees? But who cares about that? I’ll just get to the stuff you really want to know.

There are six basic chocolate categories:

Dark Chocolate : Lots cocoa solids and very little milk or other liquids. It might have up to 13% milk solids, but not necessarily. This is considered the healthiest of all edible chocolates.

Bittersweet Chocolate: For a chocolate to be called bittersweet it must contain at least 35% cocoa solids. Upper end bittersweet will boast about 60% to 85% cocoa solids. Bittersweet is not just a cleaver name. The lower the sugar content the more intense the chocolate taste. This type of chocolate is most often used in baking.

Sweet, Dark Chocolate: Very similar to semi-sweet chocolate, containing 35-45% cocoa solids. In fact, it is  hard to notice a difference between the two.

Semi-sweet Chocolate: This is the most recognizable of the baking chocolates. After all, this is what was in the very first chocolate chip cookie. Of course, you can make all kinds of baked goods with semi-sweet, or just eat it all by itself. It can be used in the place of sweet dark chocolate. This lovely chocolate has a good, sweet flavor asd contains 40-62% cocoa solids.

Milk Chocolate: A sugary chocolate which normally contains 10-20% cocoa solids (which includes cocoa and cocoa butter) and more than 12% milk solids. It is occasionally used in baking, and is what most candy bars are made of. No real health benefits, except psychologically.

White Chocolate: The main ingredient in white chocolate is cocoa butter (pretty much made from pure fat).  Basically, there is no real chocolate in it. It has a smooth texture and a delicious, mild and pleasant flavor It is used to make fancy desserts like mousse and goumet puddings. Not so good for you, but yum.

With so many types of chocolate, you will never lose interest. You can eat it as candy, bake with it, drink it, and wear it (some have been known to love it that much!). Either way you look at it, chocolate is a girls best friend! Cuz diamonds taste kinda funny ;)…

Try my Chocolate Sin Cookie and join me in Heaven!

 

Chocolate Sin Cookie Serves 36 to 42

 

Some days are just chocolate days. Other days are DARK Chocolate days. On those

days, this cookie is for you!

 

Ingredients

½ cup                        pure olive oil

1½ cups                    granulated sugar

3 large                       eggs, beaten

3 Tablespoons          milk

2 teaspoons              pure vanilla extract

½ cup                       unsweetened cocoa

                                 (Dutch milled is best)

2⅔ cups                    flour

2 teaspoons               baking powder

¾ teaspoon                salt

¾ cups                       granulated sugar

24                               chocolate chunks

                                   (use your favorite)

 

Preparation

1. Preheat oven to 375°F. Lightly coat large

cookie sheets with olive oil cooking spray.

2. In mixer bowl add olive oil, sugar, eggs, and

milk. Mix until well blended.

3. Add vanilla and cocoa. Blend until smooth.

4. Add flour, baking powder, and salt. Mix

until well blended.

5. Drop by teaspoonfuls or by small size cookie

scoop into powdered sugar and roll until

coated. Place 3 per row (these cookies spread).

6. Bake for 7~10 minutes. Remove from oven

and press a chunk of chocolate into the center

of each cookie. Cool on wire

 

 

 

 

Pucker Up

 

When life gives you lemons.....
When life gives you lemons…..

When life gives you lemons, you make lemonade right?

 Not so fast missy!

Although I love a nice tall glass of lemonade as much the next guy, there is so much more to lemons (and life) than just plain old lemonade.

 Did you also know that lemons

·     Are the top source of citric acid

·     Packed with vitamin C

·     Act as a natural laxative (the juice of one lemon blended with one egg yolk)

·     Fresh lemon juice has only 4 calories

·     Are a natural therapy for treating fever

·     When heated, creates salicyclic acid, which is a natural pain reliever.

·     Are excellent thirst quencher

·     A natural insect repellent

·     Lighten hair color in the sun

·     Are an natural body detoxifier

·     Keep fruits like apples and pears from going brown

·     Have a delicious and soothing aroma

·     Add incredible flavor to baked goods  

Lemon tips

·     When needing only a few drops of lemon  juice, prick one end with a fork and squeeze the desired amount.

·     Lemon juice can be frozen for up to 6 month and still taste fresh. To freeze, place juice in ice cube trays.

·     When a recipe calls for fresh squeezed lemons, squeeze upside down to avoid seeds from dropping into your recipe.

·     To extend the shelf life of a lemon, keep them in your refrigerator in a clean jar, cover them with cold water and seal the jar well.

A couple of useless facts about lemons

·     There are 18 varieties of lemons worldwide

·     On his second voyage, Christopher Columbus brought the first lemons (and lemon trees) to America.

So, when life gives you lemons, go ahead and make lemonade…….

But, don’t forget the cookies!!

Extreme Lemon Sugar Cookies

 ⅔ cup……………….. pure olive oil

1 cup………………… granulated sugar

1 large………………  egg

2½ teaspoons……. pure vanilla extract

2 tablespoons……. lemon zest (one large lemon)

2 tablespoons……. fresh lemon juice

2¼ cups……………. flour (whole wheat pastry flour works well)

1 teaspoon………… baking powder

½ teaspoon……….. baking soda

½ teaspoon……….. salt

½ cup……………….  additional sugar for rolling

½ cup……………….  powdered sugar for dusting.

Preparation

1. Preheat oven to 375°F. Coat cookie sheets

with olive oil cooking spray.

2. In mixer bowl add olive oil, sugar, egg,

vanilla, lemon zest, and lemon juice. Blend

until smooth.

3. Add flour, baking powder, baking soda, and

salt. Mix until well blended.

4. Drop by teaspoonfuls or by small size cookie

scoop into sugar and roll until well coated.

Place on prepared cookie sheets.

5. Bake 8 minutes, cool on wire racks, dust

with powdered sugar. Pucker up, and enjoy!!!

Olive Oil Desserts Available January 2009

About desserts made with olive oil

With heart disease on the rise and unhealthy trans fat making headlines as one of the main culprits, many people are looking for better ways to improve their diet. The challenge is that most baked goods contain unhealthy trans fat and hydrogenated oils. For this reason, many people find themselves having to say ”No” to the one food group they love the most – dessert.