I think my love of baking started when I was a toddler. My Nana always had cake for dessert after dinner. So in the afternoons she would bake a cake. I used to watch and when she was done pouring the batter into the baking pan, I would sit in the floor and lick the bowl. And share the batter with my best friend Nuisance. Nuisance was a black and red dachshund who wandered up to my Nana’s and Papa’s house on the day I was born. It was fate that she and I became best friends. ☺ That was the start of my great love of dogs and baking. 

I skipped the easy bake oven stage and went right to the real oven. At around age 9 or 10, I discovered the chocolate chip cookie recipe on the back of the bag of Nestle Tollhouse semi-sweet chocolate chips. It wasn’t long until I had that recipe memorized. I worked my way through boxed mixes in the baking section of the grocery store, and I burnt out the motors on at least a dozen hand held electric mixers. To this day, hand held mixers and I do not…well, mix. By the time I was in my late teens, my mother invested in a Kitchen Aid stand mixer because she got tired of replacing handheld mixers. 

In my teens, I branched out to different recipes in various cook books including a German Chocolate Cake from scratch (my first cake from scratch). The German Chocolate Cake was a huge hit and still is today. I discovered I had a real knack for  baking and knowing when baked goods (especially cookies) were done without being over done. That is a real problem with cookies. Eight to ten minutes does not mean literally eight to ten minutes. It means know your oven and know whatever it is you are baking. In my early twenties, I pretty much became the family baker and specialized in cookies though I can bake just about anything. When I married, my mom and dad bought me a Kitchen Aid stand mixer as a wedding gift. 

It didn’t take long for my brothers-in-law and my husband’s friends to discover my cookies. I never bought ready made cookies and it got to the point where as soon as they came in the door, they all went straight to the cookie jar. They still do. I even started getting requests for cookies from my husband’s side of the family for family gatherings though I wasn’t the “official” family baker. That honor belonged to my husband’s Aunt Linda and rightfully so; my cookies were good, Linda’s were divine! I was a young babe in the baking world, but Linda was a seasoned pro and had already begun making her own recipes. Not only was she a god when it came to baking, she was also generous and shared some of her recipes with me. That encouraged me to start tinkering with recipes and adding and subtracting from them. 

Skip ahead several years. I have created several recipes of my own and am now the “official” baker of both my birth family and my married family. According to my husband, I have finally surpassed the master and my cookies are now divine as well. I don’t know about that, but I still love to bake. I also love to share the  happiness that cookies bring to people’s lives, so you will see a lot of dessert recipes on my blog. 

This particular cookie recipe is one of my own. While out at a writers convention with my critique partners we sampled a cookie very similar to this one. We all fell in love with it, but could not find a recipe on the web, so I made my own. I hope you enjoy it.

 

Cayenne Chocolate Cookies

Ingredients

  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 cup coca powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 cup white chocolate chips
  • 1 cup pecans or walnuts

Method

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cream butter, sugars, and eggs. Add in cayenne, cocoa, baking soda, and salt. Mix in flour. Finally, add nuts, and chocolate chips. Bake 10-12 minutes.