Tuesday, April 9, 2013

I'm taking part in the fourth A to Z Challenge where for the month of April I will blog the letters of the alphabet in order every day except Sundays. The participation list is HERE – if you want to join in. You'll make many new friends, but most of all you'll have fun!

My theme – I have selected a cookie for each day and a book that I think is the perfect cookie companion along with a few fun facts about the cookie and/or ingredients. In America, a cookie is described as a thin, sweet, usually small cake. By definition, a cookie can be any of a variety of hand-held, flour-based sweet cakes, either crisp or soft.

Hot Chocolate Cookies                        
My Review – Hot Chocolate Cookies were pretty plain and turned out to be more of a novelty than a sweet dessert. I had to add the toppings to make them more appetizing. Although cute in name and theory, hot chocolate cookies probably won't make my list of must have cookies, even if they were fun to bake for this challenge.

Fun Facts –  In the days of the Aztecs, cocoa beans were valuable not only for their culinary importance but also as currency. Cocoa beans were often given as gifts during important ceremonies and festivals. Even so, they also used the roasted beans to make a chocolate drink. Their version is much different from the hot chocolate we know today. The Aztecs actually drank it cold, flavored with wine and chili peppers, and not at all sweet. Chocolate was discovered and brought to Europe in the early 1500's by the explorer Cortez. After its introduction in Spain, the drink began to be served hot, sweetened and without the chili peppers. The Spanish were very protective of their wonderful new beverage, and it was over a hundred years before news of it began to spread across Europe. When it hit London (in the 1700s), chocolate houses became popular and very trendy. It was the English who started adding milk to their chocolate and it was enjoyed as an after-dinner beverage.

Book Buddy Hope Was Here by Joan Bauer

Hope Was HereFood is in sixteen-year-old Hope's blood. With her Aunt Addie, diner cook extraordinaire, she travels the States and hones her waitressing skills, impressing hungry people everywhere. But following the tides of comfort food dining means Hope never gets to stay in one place very long, and that's tough. This latest move threatens to be the hardest yet, leaving the excitement of New York City to run a diner in rural Wisconsin. Hope doesn't expect to feel at home there, just as she doesn't expect to get caught up in town politics. But her occupation has taught her to read people, and instinct tells her to trust G. T. Stoop, the straight-shooting owner of the Welcome Stairways Diner, whose leukemia makes his entry into a heated mayoral race a surprise to everyone. What follows--as Hope meets politics, corruption, and her past head-on--is at the heart of this memorable, laugh-out-loud story about honor, trust, and serving up your very best. 

Are you a hot chocolate fan? Or more of a coffee lover, like me? Still with us on the A to Z Challenge?


Grammy said...

Hello, my friend... say, that sounds like just the kind of book I like to read. As for the hot chocolate, have you ever tried it with Pepper Jack Cheese-its? The peppery salty taste with the sweet taste of hot chocolate makes it perfect. Just sayin'. :) Best regards to you. I really enjoyed your post. Ruby

Suzanne Furness said...

I love hot chocolate, especially when it is cold outside. Add a whip of cream and some marshmallows and yummy! I tried some chocolate with chilli recently, can't say it really did it for me, it left a fiery taste in my mouth. I prefer a velvety choccy taste!

J.L. Campbell said...

Jenn, I like stories with a bit of humor so this one sounds like a good one.

Heidi Mannan said...

Oh. My. God. Those cookies look amazing. The book doesn't sound bad either. You're making me want to spend the day reading and eating cookies.

C. Lee McKenzie said...

I make a hot cocoa with a dash of chili pepper that is so good. It's not sweet, but so flavorful. Maybe it's an old Aztec recipe.

Whatever you did with those cookies, you made them look delicious.

Ruth Schiffmann said...

Oh, I love your theme, Jenn. I'm going to have to scroll through and see what I've missed. I do like the idea of these, but thank you for the honest review. I don't think I'll waste my time.

Tempest Nightingale LeTrope said...

I bought a bunch of pre-made cookies to pop in the oven as the mood strikes. Does that count as making cookies?
I actually would like to be a better cook, but time, tide, and inertia hold me back.

Scribbles From Jenn said...

Grammy, Pepper Jack Cheez-its sound awesome!

Suzanne, not sure if I'd like chili in my hot chocolate, but I do like it on cold mornings.

J.L., it is a good one.

Heidi, a good book and cookies; the making of a perfect day!

C.L., my girl likes spicy foods. I'll have her give this one a try.

Ruth, I'm glad you are enjoying the theme. I think honesty is always the best policy.

Tempest, I used mixes in some of my recipes, too.

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