Peanut Butter Cookies


My dad is visiting and these are one of his favorite cookies. It’s funny because he would never eat a peanut butter sandwich or have peanut butter on his toast or on an apple. And a Reese Peanut Butter cup has never crossed his lips. But peanut butter cookies he loves. It was also opening day for deer hunters and my non-hunting husband goes to opening day deer camp fish fries every year so I always send cookies.

Peanut butter, chocolate chip and oatmeal raisin are my standbys. I like to freeze cookies 3-4 to a zip lock bag after they are cooled (unless of course they are all going to deer camp). They always taste fresh and I have something homemade on hand to serve with coffee or as a little dessert.

Preheat oven to 375

Cookie dough:

1 cup butter at room temperature

1 cup peanut butter

1 cup white sugar

1 cup brown sugar

2 eggs

1 tsp pure vanilla extract

2 1/2 cups all purpose flour

1 1/2 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp salt


Cream together butter, peanut butter, sugars, eggs, and vanilla.




Whisk flour, baking soda and salt together.


With a wooden spoon stir the dry ingredients into the creamed mixture.


Once the dough is thoroughly combined use a cookie scoop and put on an un-greased cookie sheet. Use a fork dipped in white sugar and press to make ridges on each cookie.


Bake for 11 minutes. Remove to cooling racks. Enjoy!!


You can use smooth or chunky peanut butter, it’s a matter of personal preference.  But I don’t recommend substituting oleo for the butter. Ever.

Everyone has their own favorites but I always use airbake cookie sheets. Especially when baking, it’s a good idea to have a thermometer in your oven to make sure the oven is at the proper temperature.

Barbecued Beef Brisket


I had a beautiful beef brisket from my organic farm and decided that would make a perfect Monday night dinner. My dad is spending a couple of weeks with us and he is pretty much a meat and potatoes kind of guy. I make a rub for my brisket, sear all sides and then make a wet sauce that has a little bit of a kick.

A friend once told me that her daughter and son-in-law were gourmet cooks and I asked her what exactly that meant. She said gourmet cooking means smaller portions on larger plates. There is a little truth to that I think. I looked up gourmet in the dictionary and one definition was “a connoisseur of fine food and drink”.  A gourmand can also mean “one who enjoys food in great quantities or even a gluttonous eater”. It’s all subject to interpretation. I consider my brisket fine food and the IPA I enjoyed with it fine drink. And we are all pretty full if that constitutes gluttonous eating. You be the judge. But if someone asked me I would call our dinner tonight “plain home cooking”.   Barbecued brisket, smashed potatoes and butter roasted carrots…it’s what was for dinner tonight.

Start out with a nice beef brisket.


Rub ingredients:

1/4 cup paprika

1 T chili powder

1 T cumin

1 T brown sugar

1 T kosher salt

1 tsp cayenne pepper

1 tsp garlic powder

fresh ground black pepper


With a little whisk or a fork thoroughly mix all of the rub ingredients together in a bowl. Rub spice mix on all sides of the meat.


Heat 2 T of olive oil in a heavy skillet or Dutch oven and sear all sides of the meat.


Preheat your oven to 325. Now you’re ready to make the barbecue sauce.


1 1/2 cups ketchup (I always use Brooks)

1/2 cup brown sugar

1/2 cup water

1/4 cup chopped onion (or more if you like)

3 T cider vinegar

3 T Worcestershire

2 chipotles in adobo sauce finely chopped (or more if you like)

1 tsp garlic powder

1 tsp black pepper


Chop your onion and chipotle peppers.




Combine all of the sauce ingredients and whisk together to combine.


Pour the sauce over your beautifully seared brisket, put the cover on your Dutch oven, and put it in the oven for approximately four hours.




You will want to flip the brisket over from one side to the other a couple times during the cooking process. Once it’s done remove it to a platter and let it rest a few minutes before slicing it against the grain. Serve with the barbecue sauce.  We all had seconds!

If you’d rather be less “gourmet” you could make really awesome barbecued brisket sandwiches and serve them with chips and cole slaw or a little potato salad.