Six LDS Writers and A Frog

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Random Thoughts

by Stephanie Black

Today’s blog is going to be utterly random. But it’s spring! There are daffodils in the yard! There are malted milk eggs for sale at the store! And Peeps too, but really, blecch. Peeps are kind of icky.

*“Can I help you?” my two-year-old asked me sweetly as I sat at my computer this morning. She just wanted to mess with my computer cord, but still, it was a nice thought. Her diction and articulation amuses me no end. Sometimes we coax her into repeating her version of words or phrases we find particularly cute. Like “olive oil.” And “Pinewood Derby”. Once I told her it was foggy outside. Somehow she changed “foggy” into “soggy and funky.” The Weather Channel should adopt that phrase. “Forecast for all of Northern California is soggy with scattered episodes of funky.”

*It's cool the way clothing catalogues get creative in describing colors. No “light green” or “dark red”—it’s celery and cranberry. Or tangerine instead of orange. Somehow a tangerine sweater just sounds . . . snappy and spunky.

*Today I bought five Huey Lewis and the News songs off iTunes. They are also snappy and spunky.

*I inherited an old iPod from my husband, but don’t really know how to do much with it. I have to ask my oldest daughter for help. Teenagers are handy to have around.

*Somebody please send me a good recipe for chocolate chip cookies. I have a chocolate chip cookie curse. They turn out very tasty, but very flat. I want to know how to make those thick, chewy cookies. Please help. I know some of you must be cookie experts. Do I need more flour? Smaller eggs? More eggs? Guar bean gum? Carageenen?

*My husband makes great sourdough bread. He’s had a sourdough starter growing since November. It’s like a pet—you have to feed it regularly. My husband also makes great pizza. Crank the oven up to 500 or 550, heat the pizza stone and it's pizzeria time. Apparently the key to great pizza crust is making the dough early in the day (or the night before) so the flavor has time to develop. Who knew?

*My oldest daughter just finished Kerry Blair's Ghost of a Chance and loved it. That is an awesome book.

*This will probably embarrass her, but I just have to tell you that I recently read a story by our regular blog-visitor Melanie Goldmund and oh my heck, what a great read! Keep your eye on Melanie; she's going places.

The kids are home from school, so it’s time to sign off. Cheers!


At 3/07/2007 6:54 PM, Blogger Josi said...

I'm not such a fan of chocolate chip cookies, but I make a great chocolate cookie with chocolate chips if you want them. I also make a killer oatmeal cookie--I'm happy to share if you're interested.

and I'd love your sourdough starter recipe. My mom gave me some and I did great for three months and then used it without taking the new start out! I could have screamed. Sourdough waffles with real maple syrup are yuuuuuuuuuumy.

At 3/07/2007 7:24 PM, Blogger Stephanie Black said...

Josi, I'd love the cookie recipes. And I'll ask my husband about the sourdough starter. I don't know much about it myself--I've only fed it once! I'll e-mail you.

At 3/07/2007 10:29 PM, Blogger Annette Lyon said...

I know, I know! I make a rockin' chocolate chip cookie, never flat.

The key is to add enough flour--probably a lot more than the recipe calls for. How much, I'm not sure, because I never measure my cookie flour; I go by whether the dough is still sticky (which means add more). When the dough starts to get a tiny bit crumbly in the bottom of my Kitchenaide, I know it's done. You should be able to handle the dough without getting it all over your fingers.

I swear this works! I also refuse to use shortening in cookies. That's just sick and wrong. I'm a butter only woman.

At 3/08/2007 12:53 AM, Blogger Stephanie Black said...

Thanks, Annette! I'll add more flour next time until the dough is like you described. My dough has been very sticky.

At 3/08/2007 7:11 AM, Blogger Amber said...

I LAUGHED about the sourdough starter because if my husband heard about about it, he'd be THERE. He's sooo obsessed with making great pizza dough and other breads.

GREAT site and I'm so happy I found a well-written LDS blog!

At 3/08/2007 8:47 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Stephanie, you are embarrassing me, but I'm pleased, too. I'm squirming and happy at the same time.

Melanie Goldmund

At 3/08/2007 9:08 AM, Blogger Michele Holmes said...


This is a great recipe here in Utah. It may need some altitude adjustments out your way though. I'll trade you for the sourdough starter and pizza recipes.

1 lb butter (no substitutes)
1 1/2 C sugar
2 C brown sugar
3 eggs
1 1/2 tsp each, baking soda, salt, and vanilla
5 C flour
2 bags of milk chocolate chips (if you've already used a pound of butter, you might as well go for it on the chocolate too!)

Bake @350 for 7-9 minutes

At 3/08/2007 11:00 AM, Blogger Stephanie Black said...

Thanks, Amber! It's funny about the sourdough--my husband got his mother hooked on it when she was visiting us. Now she has her own sourdough "pet" complete with proofing box and pizza stone . . .

Michele, thanks for the cookie recipe. Awesome! Anything with two bags of chocolate chips is my kind of recipe. E-mail me at and I'll mail you the pizza dough recipe and whatever info about sourdough starters that I can get out of my husband.

At 3/08/2007 11:18 AM, Blogger Tristi Pinkston said...

I love Huey Lewis and the News! You rock!

And shortening? Whoever puts shortening in . . . well, any food at all, should be shot, but they'll probably die of a heart attack by the time I get the gun loaded anyway.

At 3/08/2007 1:29 PM, Blogger FHL said...

Neiman-Marcus Urban Legend Cookie Recipe

My own recipe:

Cut Pillsbury cookie dough roll in half, plan to eat about a fourth of that uncooked...


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