It was around Thanksgiving, or maybe a little bit earlier in November, that my 5 day a week workout routine fell off to about 2 days a week, and then failed to make an appearance again until late January.
I have to say that I don’t really feel too bad about it. I knew I’d start up again, but when I did, boy oh boy did my body protest. I knew that jumping back into day one of HIIT training would be a tough start but I wasn’t prepared for just how bad. But now I’m back to normal and feel good. Because my son is a very early riser, so I am, and it makes for a great productive morning. He exercises with me, sort of, and then we go about our day.
Now here is my real confession. On day two of my ‘get back in shape plan’ I was feeling tired and sore still, and, pathetically, felt sorry for myself. First world problems, right? All I could think about while working out was that I wanted a cookie. A monster cookie to be exact. It was awful. Literally, as I was doing bicycle crunches on the floor, I mentally went through the long list of ingredients I had in my pantry to confirm what I knew was about to happen. I was going to do it. I deserved it! I had done two straight days of great workouts, ate very well….so I decided it was ok. I reason with myself constantly to make things like this ok. Then I asked Judah if he wanted to make cookies with me and he answered “Yes Mama, please!” Now I had to.
So I did it. And here’s how…..
2 sticks salted butter, soft
1 cup brown sugar
2 large eggs
½ tablespoon vanilla
½ cup peanut butter
1 cup all purpose flour
½ teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup quick oats
2 cups rice krispies
½ cup mini candy coated chocolate M&M’s
¾ cup chopped cashews
¾ cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
½ cup white chocolate chips
Preheat your oven to 375 degrees.
With a hand mixer, mix the butter and brown sugar together until fluffy. Then add your eggs, then your vanilla and beat until totally combined.
Add to your bowl, the peanut butter, flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt and stir to combine. Then add the oats, rice krispies and nuts, and then all of the other candy ingredients.
Gently fold all ingredients together slowly, until just evenly combined.
Use a small cookie scoop to drop rounded balls onto a non-stick cookie sheet. Bake for 8-9 minutes until the edges are just getting golden brown.
Take out of oven and let sit for a minute or two before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
Using a small cookie scoop, this will make 70 small cookies, or a larger scoop will make 36.
Here’s how they turn out:
Whip up your brown sugar and butter with a hand mixer until fluffy and light. (Just a quick note: most monster cookie recipes call for at least 2 cups of sugar if not more. At least one cup being white sugar. I only use 1 cup of brown sugar because these are sweet cookies with all the extra ingredients. Add additional sugar if you like em’ sweet!)
Then in go your eggs and vanilla. Beat again until whippy and combined.
Then just starting dumping it all in there. The peanut butter, flour, baking powder and baking soda, and the salt. Stir this up with a wooden spoon until totally combined. (Another note: I put 1 teaspoon of salt in the ingredients. When I actually made these, I added almost 2 teaspoons of salt as I like to taste a tiny bit of salt. There are a lot of sweet elements in the ingredients and I like the tiny hint of saltiness to offset that a little. Sweet & Salty go great together!)
Then in go the fun ingredients – the oats, rice krispies and nuts.
And then right on top of that goes all of the chocolate candy. Feel free to use what you have. It’s a great way to get rid of odds and ends in your pantry. You can’t go wrong….any nuts or chocolate candies work just fine.
Gently fold this all together. It doesn’t take long and you’ll have it pretty evenly incorporated. Don’t over mix or stir too hard. You want to keep your rice krispies “crispy”.
Get a small cookie scoop or small spoon and start spooning out little balls to drop on to your baking sheet.
Line them all up. All crooked like. I’m not one of those people who will scoop and then roll out perfect balls in my hand before putting them on the sheet. I’m sorry, but I just don’t care. When they bake they just do their own thing anyway. Once again, it’s ‘rustic’ right?
Pop them in the oven for 8-9 minutes. I took mine out at 8, as the edges were just barely getting browned, and for me, I like them just lightly baked. I will also admit that I like a really soft, almost barely cooked inside. The softer and chewier the better.
Leave them on the baking sheet for about 2 minutes before transferring them to a cooling rack. These are pretty delicate while warm.
This recipe made me 70 small, bite sized cookies. If you used a bigger scoop, it would be about 3 dozen. I just like them small….easy for small people, and easy for me to pop in my mouth all at once without making a crumb trail. Always hide the evidence.
Eat a few while they are still warm. With milk.
There are a lot of recipes out there for monster cookies. And there’s two sides. One made with flour, and one strictly with peanut butter and no flour. I’ve tried both and found the one with flour was a bit harder and dry. When I tried the peanut butter version I thought it was a bit too chewy and pasty. So I did my own thing over time and did half and half of both, to get the texture I like.
The end of today’s recipe story is that although I did succumb to my weakness of cookies on only day two of my workout regime, It didn’t set me back at all. The scale still dipped lower by the end of the week and I literally “made my cookie, and ate it too” with no remorse or negative effect.
What is this crazy new-fandangled diet you ask? I call it the “being normal diet”. Eat well, exercise, and enjoy yourself when you want to in moderation. One monster cookie isn’t going to mess you up. I guess 70 might?
– The Homesteaders Wife