First of all, bonne année! And thank you for reading this. It has become much more fun to blog as more people have started to read my blog and leave comments. I hope everyone has lots of fun in 2010, with less stress and more time with family and friends.
Every month, Sweet and Simple Bakes posts a recipe for people to bake and write about on their blogs. I have wanted to participate for months, but I tend to procrastinate, and then only realize that I don’t have the necessary ingredients when it’s too late. So I made sure to bake December’s recipe, cranberry, pecan and white chocolate cookies, well in advance of the deadline.
Although I overbaked them a bit, these cookies were yummy, with the sweetness of the chocolate tempered by the tart cranberries. The pecans (I lightly toasted them beforehand) and oats also contributed lots of flavor. Instead of using white chocolate, I used dark chocolate chips since they were easier to find. Next time I make them, I might reduce the amount of chocolate, since I prefer the flavors of butter, nuts and fruit. But I think I’m in the minority there and most people want as much chocolate as they can get!
This was also the first time I used my beautiful brand-new digital scale, which can measure in both grams and ounces. I'm a little late in jumping on the kitchen scale bandwagon. I brought measuring cups with me from the states when I moved to France, but recipes here usually list the ingredients by weight, not volume. I like to think that I finally bought a scale because I wanted greater accuracy in measuring, but the truth is that I’m lazy and got tired of having to perform mathematical calculations when baking.
One benefit that I didn’t expect is that using a scale is much faster than using measuring cups. You can weigh one ingredient first, and then set the scale to 0 and add the next ingredient to the same bowl, and keep going until everything is ready to go. The only problem I have is that I tend to pour too much into the bowl, so I have to remove some flour or sugar or whatever until I reach the correct weight. No big deal. I'm such a fanatical convert that I already actually prefer using the scale over the measuring cups, and get annoyed when recipe writers don't list both measurements. Go figure.