It’s not always about beauty…

Sometimes it’s about food. I really, really like to cook for people. I think for me it’s largely socio-cultural. Being from the US, and from “the south,” I like to cook. If there is one thing that is definitively “southern,” it’s making food, good soul food, for anyone and everyone, all the time. It’s how we socialise, it’s how we meet, it’s how we see our family, it’s how we mourn, it’s how we gather. It’s a fourth of July BBQ, a Thanksgiving feast and an Easter spread. So, having spent my first 3 decades living this, I can’t help but keep living it now that I have happily relocated to Bristol!

My colleagues usually bear the brunt of my need to entertain with food, since my current place is generally unsuitable for having dinner parties and the like. Overall, though, I think they are coping admirably with the random onslaught of food goodies.

The Crinkle Cookie

Julia's Crinkle Cookies

Most recently, this has meant being the test subjects for my cookie experiment. I found a crinkle cookie recipe on the BBC that I had to try. It took two batches to get it perfect, but I think I got there in the end, and the 2T offices got a few days of cookie-rations sorted for them. First try was with milk chocolate (too sweet), second try with 70% dark chocolate (perfection). Similar to a devil’s food cookie, if you are familiar. The recipe, adapted from the aforementioned BBC recipe is as follows:

  • 175g plain chocolate , chopped (I used G&B’s 70% Dark Chocolate)
  • 4 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 175g plain flour
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • 2 eggs , at room temperature
  • 150g caster sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract (I used vanilla bean extract, which I find a little more potent)
  • 60g icing sugar (roughly).


  1. Melt the chocolate and butter in a bowl over a small pan of simmering water or in a microwave until smooth. Cool slightly. In a separate bowl mix the flour, baking powder and ½ tsp salt.
  2. Beat the eggs and sugar with an electric whisk until pale, about 2 minutes. Reduce the speed and add the chocolate mix and vanilla extract. Add the flour mixture until blended together. Cover the bowl and refrigerate for 1½ hours or even up to 2 days.
  3. When you are ready to bake, heat the oven to 160C/fan 140C/gas 3. Put the icing sugar in a small bowl. Shape the dough into roughly 4cm balls and roll in the sugar. Put them on baking sheets lined with baking paper (or greased/non-stick) and press down lightly with your hand to flatten. Bake for 12-15 minutes for soft centres and set edges. Let cool on the baking sheets for 5 minutes and then put on a rack to cool.

Per serving

(Which I only assume is a couple?) 148 kcalories, protein 2g, carbohydrate 23.6g, fat 5.7 g, saturated fat 3.2g, fibre 0.5g, salt 0.08 g

I would LOVE to hear everyone’s favourite baking treat! If you have anything I need to try, or you give these beauties a go, please leave me a comment below! Best of luck, and happy baking.

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