Thursday, December 23, 2010

Here's hoping!

As some of you dear readers might be aware, I am fairly politically active; I vote religiously, follow the issues, and donate frequently to political campaigns. One of those campaigns was that of Bob Casey Jr, back in 2006, and ever since he sends me Christmas cards.** Every year. Even though I know I am just one of a zillion people on a mailing list, I find this oddly endearing. So, this year, I am reciprocating in kind, although not with a card. Here's the text of the letter I just sent Senator Casey:

Dear Senator Casey:

Let me start off by expressing my appreciation for the work you do on behalf of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Although I think I am somewhat to the left of you, politically speaking, I find your stance on the issues sensible and, by and large, in line with my own. I voted for you in 2006 and don't regret it.

Here's the point of my letter. You send me frequent email updates on issues, holiday cards, and the like, and it occurred to me that I have never reciprocated in kind. Naturally, I'm not voting in the U.S. Senate (or in any other legislative body), so I have nothing of that kind to report, but I have been told that I make a mean peanut butter cookie. So I am sharing my recipe with you. Here goes:

Precious Peanut Butter Cookies

• 1 cup butter
• 1 cup freshly ground peanut butter
• 1 cup white sugar
• 1 cup light brown sugar
• 3 eggs
• 2.5 cups flour
• 1 tsp salt
• 1.5 tsp baking soda
• 1 tsp vanilla
• 8oz peanut butter chips

Cream the butter in a large mixing bowl, then beat three eggs in a small bowl. (The longer you beat the eggs the better the cookies.) Add the white sugar and about half of the eggs, then beat until smooth. Add the brown sugar, and the remainder of the eggs, then beat again until smooth. Stir in the vanilla. Then add the peanut butter, but – and I can't stress this enough – make sure to use freshly ground or, at the very least, organic. If you use a store-bought variety like Jif or Skippy the cookies will turn out salty and greasy.

In a separate bowl mix the flour, salt and baking soda, then add it to the butter-sugar-egg-peanut butter mixture along with the chips. I recommend adding, say, one-third of the dry ingredients, then one-third the bag of chips, and stirring, then another third of the dry ingredients, then another third of the chips, and stirring, etc. The dough will be VERY thick, so if you add the wet ingredients a little bit at a time you'll do better than simply dumping in everything at once.

Once you've got everything thoroughly mixed, refrigerate the dough for an hour. Then spoon out the dough on to a cookie sheet in cookie-sized portions. (I recommend modest sized portions.) Bake at 375º for 10 minutes (and no longer). Recipe makes 60-70 cookies.


Hopefully this has been useful. I know that everyone has a cookie recipe, but I can tell you that my sister-in-law, a good cook herself, tells me that she dislikes peanut butter cookies but loves mine. If you try the recipe do let me know how they come out.


Neil McGarry

I suspect that this letter will be received in one of two ways.

One (most likely): Someone in Casey's office chalks it up to a nutcase and tosses it.

Two (I hope!): That someone thinks, "This is a riot...I have got to send this along to Bob."

I now await a reply. Maybe Casey will send me a recipe for apple cake, and if he does, I am baking it!

**I donated to the campaign of Delaware's Chris Coons, to keep that dreadful Christine O'Donnell out of office, and now he has sent me a Christmas card as well. I have displayed it prominently.


Blogger Gillian said...

I think you should make a habit of sending recipes to politicians. If for no other reason than Recipes to Politicians would be an excellent band name.

11:18 AM  

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