C is for The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap!

I’m late.

I’m always late with things like this.

To be fair though, this lateness could not have been prevented.  It is not because I’m so messy I could build an excellent fort out of all the crap on my desk, or my general forgetfulness, or…no wait that’s exactly what’s going on here.

To tell this story completely we need to rewind a month:

It’s mid-November, and I’m checking in with some of the food blogs I follow when I see this picture:


It had the word cookie in it.  Clearly this could only be good.

I nudge Ashok (who was conveniently sitting next to me at the time) and take a look at the site.

The game was simple:

  1. Donate money to charity
  2. Bake 3 Dozen cookies
  3. Send these cookies to three fellow food bloggers
  4. Receive 1 Dozen cookies from three different food bloggers
  5. Profit

Ashok was as keen on this idea as I was, so we signed up, received the people who we would be sending cookies to, and learned cookies needed to be postmarked and in the mail by December 5th.

Time passes….

Suddenly it’s the week of December 5th, I’m in the very middle of a very stressful Finals period and now cookies must be baked.

Can I have a show of hands as to who saw this coming?  Everyone but me?  Thought so.

Ashok’ managed to have his own adventures with cookie baking.  Delicious, slightly troubling adventures.

The following is my recipe for Vanilla Cardamom cookies:


Wait. Not this bit. This is not a recipe. It’s a picture of me measuring flour.


  • 2 sticks butter
  • 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • Guts of 1 vanilla bean
  • Cardamom (how much is up to you.  If you like cardamom, use it!  If you don’t, use less.  I will not police your usage of this spice)


  1. Preheat your oven to 325 degrees
  2. Place 1 stick of butter in a frying pan and keep over medium heat until it turns dark brown and gives off a nutty smell.  This will involve standing over the pan and keeping the butter in motion for much of the 3-5 minutes it takes to achieve this.  Otherwise you’ll end up with burnt butter…gross
  3. Put other stick of butter and brown sugar in a bowl.  If the bowl is plastic, I also recommend a fork.  Why?  Because then you’ll add the browned butter (the stuff in the frying pan) to this bowl.  If you use a plastic bowl here it has a chance of melting, but a metal fork will soak up a lot of that heat. SCIENCE!  WOO!
  4. Give the mix a minute or two to cool before combining it with the egg beaters of your choice.
  5. Add in flour, egg, salt, baking soda, vanilla guts, and combine.  You should be left with something that looks suspiciously like cookie dough.  Do not be afraid.  In fact, you have created cookie dough.
  6. Add as much ground cardamom as your heart desires and ensure that it is stirred in
  7. Bake for about 10 minutes (depending on your oven) and enjoy.


I baked up three batches of these, packaged them (a harder process than you might expect when your local post office agent gives you sass) and got them in by the deadline to three fantastic blogs.  Still, this is the first minute I’ve had to make a post, as well as to say thank you to the three bloggers who took time out of their lives to bake me cookies, so my recipe hasn’t been posted with all the other amazing participants.

Since I have access to a camera again, I took it upon myself to take artsy pictures of these cookies as well.


Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookies

I'd love to share pictures of more than two of these coconut salted caramel thumb prints, but they have all been eaten!

I’d love to share pictures of more than two of these coconut salted caramel thumb prints, but they have all been eaten!

And finally the cookies that kept me company every night at 4:00am.  Lemon Ginger Molasses Cookies.

And finally the cookies that kept me company every night at 4:00am. Lemon Ginger Molasses Cookies.

This is really a great event, and does some pretty cool things in the world.  If you have your own cooking blog, I’d strongly suggest joining in next year.  Just make sure you either get around to building your desk-crap-fort or actually getting organized before you do.

That’s all for now!



My Thoughts from GHC, Otherwise Known as Code Like a Bad Ass


I know it’s been quite a few months without any activity here, I’m back at school so fitting in time for cooking and strong opinions is harder.  Even this post is a month old.  I wrote it in early October and was unsure of whether or not to post it for fear of making people angry.  Now, I think I can trust anyone who reads this to accept this as my opinion and disagree as they see fit.

This past week I attended the Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing in Baltimore and had an amazing time.  I met other Computer Science majors from all over the country.  I learned about how to start developing for open source platforms (which will be an entry in itself one day). I got more free stuff than my room can handle.   What’s more, I gave my resume to representatives from some amazing companies that I would love to work for one day as I don’t think they have many plans to become an evil empire (Oh hey potential employers.  What?  No.   I completely forgot I had a link to this blog in my resume).  Hire me! *ahem* Where was I?  Oh yes.  GHC. Continue reading

Chocolate Ginger Cake and the Poor Choices of a Jet Lagged Brain

This past week my family and I were in northern California.  We spent a few days each in San Francisco, Carmel, Monterey, Yosemite, and Palo Alto.  However rather than where we went, I think what we ate is what is going to stick in my memory.  Elk, bacon that tasted like ribs, Prohibition era whiskey and raspberry coffee cake (this last one is all one dish…because people who do not use the Oxford comma are dumb and also a butt) were all fantastic.

Still, there is a downside to travelling westward.  My body has no idea when I’m supposed to be asleep.  Because of that I woke up at 6:00 this morning…which makes absolutely no sense as that’s 3:00am back in California.  Believe me, I tried explaining this to my internal clock, but it gave a very convincing argument: “No”.

Instead I went for a run, did several important computer related things, cleaned my room, poked around the internet for a bit, aaand then had lunch… as it was noon. Continue reading

Thai Food and Pictures!

It has been quite a while since my last post and a few important things have occurred.  First, I have a camera!  This is exciting as I was relying on Ashok’s and since he and I are now on opposite ends of the country I get to take artsy pictures of food again!  I love artsy pictures of food.

aw yeah!

Another piece of exciting news is that I officially can stand to eat Thai food again!  I spent most of May and part of June in Thailand and after three meals a day predominately consisting of rice products, I was very much not in the mood for Thai food.  But after two months avoiding the stuff, I picked up my Thai cookbook today (translated in a way that makes the English major in me smile) and made my family dinner (which spoils the third piece of news, I’m home again rather than at school). Continue reading

Object Oriented Pie

There will be pie in this post, but if the saying is “you’re going to have to sing for your supper” then you’ll definitely need to learn for your desserts. Still if you just want the recipe, scroll down to the bottom.

The other day I learned I was going to be TA-ing my school’s Intro to Computer Science class (so did Ashok for that matter, but I’ll let him talk about his own experiences with it).  To understand why this is as  exciting for me as it is involves a little back story as well as a familiarity with the phrase “the wand choses the wizard, Mr. Potter”.  Coming into college, I was not overly pleased with the fact that I needed to take another math credit to graduate.  I came in undecided but very firmly planted in the arts and humanities side of campus.  Still, it had to be done so I put on my big girl pants and signed up for the least math related math class I could find: Intro to Computer Science.  To my surprise, I enjoyed myself.  I enjoyed myself so much I’m still taking CS classes.  Now, it’s my major. Continue reading

An Angry Rant About Science

I am angry. Perhaps you’re angry too? Maybe you just got off the phone with your family, maybe someone came up to you today and beat you over the head with a stick, maybe your code crashed and forgot to save your work. Believe me; I’ve been there on each of these. However, what has me angry today is something entirely different. When I’m home and spending time with my parents we eventually decide that we’re all exhausted from a long day of looking at recipes, cooking, cleaning up from cooking, or playing bananagrams. So what do we do? We watch TV.  An easy task in concept, but very difficult in practice. To assist, I have this convenient diagram:

Image Continue reading