Cooking baking must go on?!? I wasn’t “feeling” it.

Every year, I look forward to baking cookies around mid-December.  This year was a little different. I don’t crave sweet treats like I have in the past because Shakeology ended these sweet cravings. I think it is safe to say all the hype I heard before trying the beverage turned out to be true.

Let me share a little bit of history… Before my son was born, I detested sweets. I always wanted “real food” like steak, potatoes, squash, you get the picture. Then, I discovered while pregnant with him that I was borderline for gestational diabetes. This scared me since my grandmother was diabetic and had to use insulin daily. I was fine with avoiding sweets but after I delivered him, my system seemed to change overnight. I was beginning to crave sweet snacks like never before. (You can ask my mom about my childhood. I didn’t like candy very much*strange kid alert* so the new sweet tooth was odd. I definitely had my fair share of too many French fries and cheeseburgers though. In fact, I asked my mom to dig up my old photos to add here but she hasn’t had time. Hopefully, these will come soon!)

So, once this sweet-tooth appeared, how did I manage it?  It took years to come up with a viable solution but I finally did! I heard dark chocolate was healthy for your heart and I liked the taste. My solution ended up being 6 daily squares of a Green and Blacks 85% dark chocolate bar. I even recall one of my former coworkers getting everyone some candy for the holidays.  He ended up getting me one of those bars at a neighboring town because we didn’t have a store that sold it where I lived. (You can score them at Publix. We now have one in my community.)

chocolate

Back to the cookie baking point, during the holidays, my ritual of baking cookies and treats was one of my favorites because I gave myself permission to indulge. I typically make date calls, sugar dusted snow ball cookies, fruitcake cookies, and another treat (this is normally up in the air and based on what our kids want.) This year was different because I didn’t crave sweets so it took a little while to get in the mood to bake. I did it to share with family and friends.  Plus, I wanted to keep the tradition alive for my children who enjoy baking with me. Even though I no longer crave sweet things, I still want to share my love of baking with those who expect it. Plus, I can’t say I didn’t enjoy some treats myself.  I gave myself permission to skip a few days of Shakeology so my sweet tooth would return.

In honor of the cookie-baking tradition, and holiday magic, I want to share one of my favorite recipes with you – sugar dusted snow ball cookies.  However, if you don’t want to even think about this recipe until next year (like me), just print and save for future use.

sugar-dusted

Mel’s Sugar Dusted Snow Ball Cookies

¾ cup of pecans (cookies pieces)

1 cup of softened butter

1 cup of powdered sugar

2 ¼ cup of all-purpose flour

¼ teaspoon salt

1 tsp vanilla extract

Stir together the pecan pieces, butter, ½ cup powdered sugar and vanilla, mix well.  Then, sift flour and salt together (don’t skip this step) into pecan mixture.  Chill for about 20 minutes. Roll into 1-inch balls, flatten a bit, then roll each ball 3 times in the remaining powdered sugar.  Place 2 inches apart on cookie sheet.  Bake 350 F until set but not brown – about 8 minutes.  Do not overbake! Sprinkle colored sugar of your choice on top.

 

Happy New Year,

Mel

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