Saturday, July 30, 2011

Cookies on demand--CHEAPER & Healthier--with the help of the freezer!

You know when it's late at night and all you want is something chocolaty or chewy?  And the LAST thing you want to do is make a mess of your kitchen?  And that's when you make a "late night run" to the store to pick up Chewy Chips Ahoy, Soft Batch, licorice, or ice cream.  (I think everyone has had a day that feels mentally or physically EXHAUSTING!! You know the *kind*--it makes you want to sit down in front of the TV and brainlessly watch while eating something munchie all while you "practice breathing" just so you can mentally survive! And then get up tomorrow and do it all over again...  Now, I know this is a BAD habit...but it seems it happens every so often.)

I have a healthier and cheaper substitute idea that is GREAT for many of those moments (or times that an impromptu dessert is needed.)  Since figuring out this IDEA, my husband and I have spent FAR less on the "munchies" AND had healthier snacks---and NO we weren't munching on carrot sticks!!

When you make cookies from scratch, only cook what you are going to eat--and FREEZE the rest in 8-10 in. log style.
THE idea
  • When I make cookie dough, I only cook the wanted amount of cookies and then I FREEZE the rest of the dough (in a log shape--aka. otherwise known as a cookie light saber at our house). 
  • That means WHEN the bad day comes, I have cookie dough in the freezer! 
  • When I cook the dough from the freezer, it is much easier to say I will only eat *this* more of my husband and I eating almost the entire package between the two of us!!
  • The healthier part is: the homemade dough is BETTER for you than the kind you will buy in the store AND since the cookies are bigger, and fresh (served with cold milk), I eat LESS....saving my calorie and fat intake!!
This idea can be done with ANY cookie dough recipe.  However, my personal favorite is:

warm and gooey Chocolate Chip Cookies
1 c. Crisco
¾ c. sugar
¾ c. brown sugar
1 tsp. Vanilla

Add: 2 eggs; mix well

2 ¼ c. flour
1 tsp. Baking soda
1 tsp. Salt

 Add: Chocolate chips 
Gourmet Option:
Idea #1: I like to add just a smidgen of mint chocolate chips
Idea #2: Add 1 tsp. cinnamon--makes the cookie truly gourmet!
Bake @ 350 F.  For 8-9 min.
Note: there are 8 cookies--enough for the people at home to have 2 each for a lunch dessert!
For the Freezer:
  1. Lay out an arms length of saran wrap. 
  2. Plop raw cookie dough in the middle-- resembling a LOG. 
  3. Wrap the saran wrap around the dough and repeat. 
  4. Label the dough with masking tape with the date and kind of dough and stick it in the freezer!
When you want to USE the "freezer cookie dough":
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F (or otherwise noted on your recipe)
  2. Unwrap one side of the "log" and pull off the desired amount of dough
  3. Put the rest of the dough back in the freezer.
  4. For the dough you are going COOK--defrost it in the microwave for 20 seconds and dish it onto a cookie sheet and treat it as though you had just made the dough from scratch!  (ie.  Follow your normal cookie baking instructions!)
Happy Stretching Pennies...

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