Baked Pesto Chicken

Obviously, I love food and love to eat, but I have decided to put my bad habits on hold for a little while. This winter I have spent so much money eating out during the week and on weekends. I stopped going to the grocery store because my food was going bad and I was never home long enough to make anything. I would eat lunch at work and then meet friends out for dinners. While I love the social aspect of going out to dinner and meeting up with friends after work, I realized not only my budget, but my waist line was starting to feel the effects. I finally decided last week to go to the grocery, make food for my lunches so they are ready to go and force myself to head home or to yoga after work. I wasn’t perfect, but I did do a lot better than I had been.

A few of my friends had been wanting to get together for dinner this past week, so I suggested we make dinner at my place. I had food left from my grocery run and everyone pitched in. My friend Caroline had been craving pesto, and luckily  I hadn’t made it yet for my recipe collection so it was the perfect dinner idea!

Mix basil, olive oil, salt, pepper, Parmesan (or Romano) cheese, and pine nuts in a food processor.

Make sure to blend well and continue to add ingredients based on the taste. I tasted my pesto several times before deciding it was done. I also didn’t follow a recipe. I bought some Basil, a bag of pine nuts and just mixed the ingredients together slowly, and not all at once. You can also use spinach instead of basil if you are on a budget. I had some great suggestions from people on Twitter for making pesto and using spinach was one I had never heard of. Also, if you have any leftover, you can freeze in ice-cube trays and use later. This was a great tip from a co-worker who also has some great recipes to share!

Baked Pesto Chicken

4 Boneless Chicken Breasts

For the Pesto:

Fresh Basil

Pine Nuts

Olive Oil

Salt

Pepper

Romano or Parmesan Cheese

Blend pesto ingredients together or you can use pesto from the store. In a baking dish, spray dish with Pam (cl) and then cover the bottom lightly with pesto. Add the cleaned chicken breasts and cover with the remaining pesto. Sprinkle the cheese over the top and cover with aluminum foil. Bake at 350° for 35-40 minutes. Make sure to check the chicken after about 30 minutes and adjust time accordingly. It took about 45 minutes in my oven and I removed the aluminum foil after about 30 minutes. Serve and enjoy!

With spring right around the corner I know it is going to be hard to keep up with my new plan of eating at home and being more active, but hopefully I can stick with it and stick to my budget…!  Wish me luck.

Lucia

Spicy Buffalo Chicken Dip

I instantly fell in love with Spicy Buffalo Chicken dip when my friend Sarah made it for a birthday party almost two years ago. She made it again last year for my Super Bowl party and unfortunately haven’t had it since.  Luckily,  my friend Caroline had some leftover from her Super Bowl party and brought them in to work  for us to snack on. So when I needed to make “comfort food” for a work party, I knew exactly what I needed to make. I was worried it might be a little bit too spicy, but no one seemed to complain (and that is a good thing)! I had remembered what ingredients my friend Sarah told me she used and just went for it. If you don’t like things too spicy, I recommend cutting down on the Cholula hot sauce.

Spicy Buffalo Chicken Dip

Ingredients:

3 boneless chicken Breasts (some recipes called for canned chicken, but that just sounds horrible)

1 cup light ranch (or regular)

1 cup Cholula hot sauce

1 package of fat-free cream cheese (or regular)

1 package of shredded cheddar cheese

Boil the chicken breasts. While the chicken is cooking, add the ranch, cream cheese, hot sauce, and shredded cheese to a baking dish. Cook at 350º for 10 minutes. Remove from oven, mix ingredients, and put back in the oven for 10 minutes. By this time, the chicken should be done cooking. Shred the chicken and mix with the ingredients in the baking dish. Cover with aluminum foil and bake for an additional 20-25 minutes. Serve with chips (I prefer scoops!)

*Tip – My co-worker Betsy told me that if you put chicken in a crock pot with a little bit of water and let it cook during the day (even if it’s frozen) it will instantly shred once it is ready.

My next cooking adventure will hopefully be this weekend, as I am thinking about having a little Oscar’s party with some of my friends. Wishing I had access to all the party accessories I would need from A Classic, but I guess I can give my sister something to blog about – hosting Oscar parties!

Lucia

Gnocchi with Gorgonzola Cream Sauce

A few months ago my Aunt gave me a book called The Geometry of Pasta. It has all the different types of pasta and what sauces to pair them with. It was such a nice and thoughtful gift and I was excited to finally get to use it. Not only is it a great recipe book, but it is actually very interesting and provides insight into the recipe. As I sat watching Top Chef the other night, I was reminded of the book when a few of the contestants were in the bottom for making their own pasta. One of the owners from Rao (that is where the challenge was that night) said that you don’t really need to make homemade pasta for it to be a great dish. He said the sauce should make the dish and that if something is just as good pre-made, there is no need to re-invent the wheel when cooking family style.

I instantly grabbed my book and started looking through recipes, as I am always inspired to cook when I’m watching Top Chef. As I scanned the Gnocchi section, I realized I had never made this for my blog. When I started reading about Gnocchi, I found it interesting that the book claimed it was better to make it from scratch than buy it from the store, as packaged Gnocchi is harder and does not cook as well as homemade. I agree with the guy from Rao when it comes to pasta, as I would probably never attempt to make penne or rigatoni, but Gnocchi seemed fun. I hadn’t made pasta in a while and I have never made Gnocchi so I decided to go for it!

Gnocchi Con Gorgonzola

Gnocchi Ingredients:

2 large Idaho Potatoes (or Russet)

2 Eggs

1 cup all-purpose flour

A few gratings of nutmeg

Boil the potatoes in salted water until fully cooked. Drain and let cool. Once cooled, peel off the skin and put through a ricer/foodmil.

When cool enough to handle, but still warm, add the egg, flour and nutmeg. Mix evenly (work as little as possible so that it does not become doughy). Take a small lump and roll on a well floured surface. Test it in the boiling water to make sure it doesn’t fall apart and cooks properly. Once you are sure it’s ready – roll out the dough in strips about as thick as your fingers (thumb or pinkie, it’s up to you). Cut it into pieces of equal width and height, about the size of the tip of your thumb. Make sure they have enough flour on them, but not too much.

Optional: Use a fork to put ridges on one side or use your thumb to make an indent. This allows the Gnocchi to gather more sauce during your meal.

*NOTE: I did not have a ricer/foodmil so I smashed the potatoes with a fork and then mixed them in the food processor.

Gorgonzola Cream Sauce Ingredients:
1 cup heavy whipping cream

2 cups of crumbled Gorgonzola (I just bought a package from the store)

Nutmeg

Pepper

Walnuts (Optional)

Optional: Roast walnuts and add to the sauce. Add in peas for additional flavor.

In a saucepan, mix the cream and the Gorgonzola on medium heat until well  blended. Continue to stir over low-heat. Add in some nutmeg and pepper to taste. While the sauce is cooking, add the Gnocchi to boiling salt water. Once they float to the top, cook for 2 minutes, add to the sauce with a little bit of the pasta water. Cook until well blended. Serve and enjoy!

And for your listening pleasure, my cousin Michael sent me this link today and thought I would share! I know it is out of season, but it is an Italian Christmas song we used to listen to as kids and it made my day! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nQrdxtWgHbE&feature=related

Lucia

Happy Birthday to you!

Today My Big Fat Italian Life turns 1! I can’t believe a year ago today, as I sat at my intern desk thinking about my “passions,” and how I could start to pursue them, I decided to write my first blog post. I had been toying with the idea of starting a blog for a few months since entering the PR world, but never had the courage, or so-called “passion” (or so I thought) to write about anything.

I was so inspired after hearing a speaker at my internship talk about pursuing your passion that I jumped in head first. As I sat thinking about what I was passionate about (and getting anxiety thinking I may not have any…) it hit me. I am not usually good at sticking to things or routines, but one thing I have always loved to do is cook. It’s something I have grown up doing with my family and it has brought my family and friends together my entire life. I knew this was something I could definitely stick to, and be passionate about! I also thought it would be a great way to be able to enjoy a meal with my friends more often. Coming from a large Italian family, I definitely missed Sunday dinners at my Grandparents after moving to Chicago and found myself feeling rather lonely Sunday nights when I knew all of my family was sitting around a table over pasta and meatballs without me. So not only did I start blogging, I started making Sunday dinner for my roommates and occasional guests. I am proud to say  that I have stayed committed to my blog and have worked hard at continuing to make it better. I may not get to make something I blog about every week, but I have continued to make new food and to even try some new food!

It took a while for me to find my legs with this blog, but as I continued to experiment in the kitchen and learn new recipes, I realized how much I enjoy making recipes my own by adding/tweaking ingredients, working with a tight budget, and learning new tips along the way! There are so many 20 something’s out there who might enjoy cooking, but don’t necessarily have a ton of money to spend or who are too nervous to try anything new. Hopefully I can be a motivator to get in the kitchen and have an adventure – teach yourself new tricks and try new recipes.

After a full year, I am glad I am still here and still passionate about learning everything there is to know about cooking and experimenting with new recipes. So here’s to your first birthday My Big Fat Italian Life and hopefully, many more to come!

And in tribute to this blog’s first birthday I thought I would share my most recent Kitchen Disaster. Lesson learned – don’t attempt a kitchen adventure after a long night out drinking and no sleep. Also, if you make waffles be sure to spray the waffle tray with a lot of Pam(cl) first 😉

Lucia

Pasta Bolognese

Last year, when I first started this blog, I made a list of some of my favorite food.  Food I’ve always wanted to try, or family recipes I need to learn how to make. Pasta Bolognese was on the top of my list. My Aunt and Uncle make a delicious Bolognese sauce. Yes, it’s because they are very good cooks, but it’s also my Uncle’s family recipe and he is from Bologna, Italy. It’s only fitting that they would make a delicious Bolognese sauce! Needless to say, almost a year later, I made my first Bolognese sauce and I am proud to say that it was a success!

My Aunt Antonia gave me her recipe so long ago, but as I went back through my notes, I realized I had quickly jotted down what she was saying and left off some very important information. How many carrots and celery sticks was I supposed to use? How much cream do I use? Well in true Lucia fashion, I decided to wing it and go off my natural instinct. With fears of my days in Italy and my waist line rushing to the front of my mind,  I decided to cut back on the cream and use half cream, half skim milk. I added a bouillon cube to add back in some flavor.

I made the sauce the night before and it was delicious. When Laura got home from work she couldn’t stop taking bites out of the pot; I of course was joining her, too. When I went to heat it up before our actual dinner, it had really thickened over night, so I added a tiny bit more skim milk. Mistake. I was disappointed that it took out a lot of the original flavor. Laura and I of course noticed it because we were lucky enough to enjoy it the night before, but Maegan and Jordan thought it still tasted good! At least two of us got to experience it in its greatness before I made a cooking mistake.

Pasta Bolognese


Ingredients:

1/3 of a large onion

2 cloves of garlic

3 Carrots

3 sticks of celery

1 lb ground beef

1 pint of heavy whipping cream (I used less than 1 pint and the rest with skim milk)

2 cans of Hunt (cl) tomato sauce (add salt, pepper, a little less than 1/3 skim milk)

Directions:

Very finely chop carrots and celery and set aside. Finely chop onion and saute with garlic in olive oil until translucent. Add the chopped carrots and celery, ground beef and cover with heavy whipping cream. Let reduce while covered.

Once cream is reduced, add the tomato sauce. Let cook for approximately 3 hours.

Chopped Onion, Celery and Carrots

Cover the ingredients in cream and let reduce

Jordan waiting for some free dinner 🙂

Pasta Bolognese

I am glad that I can finally say I made a Bolognese sauce and proud that I now will know how to make it without even following a recipe. It’s always fun to make something for the first time and realize that while it may take a while, it’s not too difficult, and it’s also fairly cheap! And any meal these days that I can make without spending an arm and a leg at the grocery store is my kind of meal!

I am also proud to say that I have almost made it to the one year mark of My Big Fat Italian Life! It is crazy to think back of the first blog post I wrote, and remember it as if it were yesterday. I’m also proud that I not only made it a full year blogging and stuck with my kitchen adventures, but I’ve made a lot of delicious meals along the way and shared a ton of meals with my family and friends!

Until next time,

Lucia

Chicken Parmesan

With the craziness of the holidays and the new year, my cooking adventures had been few and far between. Hopefully, with the start of 2011 I can get back in the kitchen and continue making new food and recipes to share with everyone!

A friend at work and I were talking about a dish I could make that would be good, fairly simple, and liked by a lot of people. So she suggested Chicken Parmesan. As I  thought about making this for dinner I couldn’t believe that I had never actually made this before! My Grandma’s breaded chicken  is one of my all time favorite meals with pasta, but Chicken Parmesan is not something I typically order off a menu, and the version I have at home really isn’t Chicken Parmesan, so I decided to take on the Kitchen Adventure!

I didn’t have a family recipe for Chicken Parmesan, so I just went with what I thought would be included in chicken parmesan.

Chicken Parmesan

3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

Flour

3 eggs

Bread Crumbs

Salt and pepper

Olive Oil

Fresh Basil

Provolone Cheese

Spaghetti

Pasta Sauce (see my quick sauce*)

Clean the chicken and then wrap each piece of chicken in plastic wrap and pound thin. Put flour in a deep dish and season with salt and pepper (don’t be shy. Make sure you can see the flour. Give it a taste before you put the Chicken in it). In a separate bowl, beat the eggs and add a tsp of water. In a third bowl, add the bread crumb.

Dip the chicken in the flour and coat. Then, dip it in the egg. Make sure the egg yolk has dripped off and then add to the bread crumbs. Continue with all the chicken pieces.

In a large pan, heat olive oil. Lightly sear the chicken breasts, but do not cook through. While the chicken is cooking, add sauce to the bottom a baking dish. Once the chicken is slightly cooked, add to the baking dish. Cover lightly with sauce. Add a piece of fresh basil and top with a piece of provolone cheese. Cover again with sauce, but be sure to leave enough for your pasta.

Bake chicken for 15-20 minutes at 350º.

Bring salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook. Drain, rinse, cover with sauce and serve with chicken!

**I didn’t get to take a picture, but I thought it looked delicious!

I unfortunately didn’t have time to make my own bread crumbs, so that is something I will have to do next time around. It was a pretty easy meal to make and I am excited to try it again sometime!

Lucia

ltalian Butter Cookies

‘Tis the season to be jolly, but yet Christmas is a week away and I can’t seem to get in the true Christmas spirit. I’ve tried to listen to my Christmas music every day, but today I gave in and went back to my recent obsession, Taylor Swift. I put up a Christmas tree, but I’m never home long enough to keep it turned on more than 20 minutes and it just seems out-of-place. I even had a Christmas cookie party with some of my friends, but it seemed like a typical Sunday, except we were eating cookies and drinking wine instead of having cocktails and going out to the bars after. Hopefully once I am home and with my family the Christmas spirit will kick in, but for now all I can say is, “I’m cold and it’s winter time.”

For my Christmas party I wanted to make an Italian Christmas cookie, but none of my friends really like fig, which is what my family typically makes for the Holidays. I found a recipe in my family cookbook for Italian Butter Cookies, and thought I would make those and add in a snowflake shape and christmas icing! I am glad I ventured to another recipe because they were so good and easy to make. Definitely something I will make again when I need to decorate cookies because they were easy to ice and were quick to make.

Pastafrolia (Italian Butter Cookies)


Dough:

1 lb butter (I used a little under a pound)

2 cups powdered sugar

4 egg yolks

2 lemons, grated

6 cups flour

Icing:

See Cream Cheese Icing in my Recipes!

Mix the butter, powdered sugar, egg yolks, and lemons. Slowly add the flour. Roll the dough on a flat, floured surface until desired thickness. Cut into favorite Christmas shapes and sprinkle with colored sugared (or opt to ice them after they are done!). Bake at 350º for 10 minutes.

I forgot to buy the lemons so I had to go with lemon juice. I definitely think the cookies would have been less dry if I had used actual lemons, so make sure you don’t skip that and use lemon juice (from a bottle…) like I did. It was a slacker move on my part, but Chicago was in the midst of getting 8 inches of snow, it was about 1 degree outside and I had no intention of going back outside once I was back in my apartment.

At the request of my lovely roommate I also made my Coconut Chocolate Chip cookies, which were once again a hit! She decided to make sugar cookies and all of our guests helped her ice them. For fun we decided to make a christmas cocktail and we went on a whim and used ingredients we found in our kitchen and it actually turned out to be SO delicious!

Laura & Lucia’s Christmas Cocktail


Absolute Citrus Vodka

Pomegranate Crystal Light

Soda water

Sprite

Sugar-free Instant Apple Cider

Mix all ingredients in a pitcher, add ice and serve!

I am headed home this week for Christmas, so I am bound to have a lot more kitchen adventures along the way. If you read “An Italian Thanksgiving,” stay tuned for an “Italian Christmas” because Christmas time in my family is taken seriously, and always accompanied by a lot of laughs, a lot of wine, a lot of cards/gambling, even more food, and overall a lot of love – if all of that doesn’t get me in the Christmas spirit, I don’t know what will….

I also want to wish a very happy birthday (I won’t say the number) to my wonderful mother, friend, and role model. I love you mom (sorry I won’t be there to celebrate with you!!) and I hope you have a wonderful birthday. I wouldn’t be the woman I am today if it wasn’t for you – so since I won’t be there on your birthday, Cheers to you!

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!

Lucia

An Italian Thanksgiving

Growing up in an Italian-American family, I often found myself saying and doing things that I thought to be 100% normal. A lot of the time, it turned out that my friends had no idea what I was saying, referring to, or even doing. I thought everyone knew what “mangia” and “andiamo” meant. It wasn’t until I was in about the third grade that I realized I was speaking a different language every once in a while.

I also thought that everyone had a family that screamed, shouted, gambled,  swore and ate Italian food during the holidays. Also untrue. American’s don’t have homemade ravioli for Thanksgiving and Christmas. They don’t have huge bowls of pasta, meatballs and sausage on the Thanksgiving table. At least not any other family I am aware of.

I was invited to a pre-Thanksgiving dinner at a friend’s house and as I sat and ate, I realized that I do not eat many of the things my friends call their “holiday favorites.”  My roommate, Laura, thought I was crazy when I said I had never had pecan pie or green bean casserole. I usually go straight for the turkey and pasta at Thanksgiving. Dont’ get me wrong, we do have the typical staples such as mashed potatoes, turkey, ham and sweet potatoes, but we include our Italian staples in the mix and usually add a little Italian flair to the typical American dishes. I don’t recall ever even having stuffing on Thanksgiving and I don’t think I saw any gravy on the table this year. I just use my Grandma’s sauce for the turkey and pasta. There is this oyster dressing/stuffing on the table, but it never appealed to me so I’m not sure if that is “normal” either.

My dad’s family thinks of Thanksgiving as their “ravioli holiday” and not “turkey day.” They spend hours making the filling, and the dough. A fight usually occurs about who gets to take their own personal box home to store in the freezer. We make enough to last us through Thanksgiving and then for Christmas Dinner. They are delicious and something I definitely look forward to having twice a year.  This year my Aunt Theresa got creative and made red pepper dough and stuffed them with cheese. They might be a new favorite, but it’s nice to keep a variety. If you really want to see an untraditional Thanksgiving just spend the evening with my Dad’s family. I saw a turkey and mashed potatoes somewhere, but there wasn’t a lot of either and I don’t think any one even noticed. Everyone was too concerned with the ravioli and stuffed shells.

Here are some  photos from my Italian Thanksgiving Weekend!

I started the week off baking apple pies, apple turnovers, berry turnovers, and sweet potato casserole with my mom. I wanted to make the dough homemade, but she didn’t feel like all the fuss, so here is a shot of the apples, the pie and the turnovers! My cousin Andy also stopped by to give my dad an apple pie he had made him. Andy is a great cook and made some really tasty treats for Thanksgiving. I think he should guest blog and share some of his recipes soon!

Apple seasoned with cinnamon, vanilla extract, sugar, and lemon juice

Apple Turnovers

My Dad and Andy – Andy knows how my Dad loves all things sweet!

Sweet Potatoes

My Mom’s family has Thanksgiving lunch, not dinner so I spent all afternoon taking pictures at my mom’s parents house. Once I got to my Dad’s Thanksgiving I forgot to document dinner , but here is a glimpse into my first top on my Italian Thanksgiving!

Kristen with Matthew and Lucas – I think Lucas was afraid of my camera! I am not sure about Matthew though…

The Appetizer table

Grandpa Carving the Turkey

The Thanksgiving Feast!

All the kids eating lunch

The leftovers

So I didn’t end up making ravioli before thanksgiving due to a very fun weekend and the lack of energy to actually cook, but it’s still something I want to tackle on my own. I have become slightly ADD when it comes to my kitchen adventures and  I need to get back on track. I still have yet to make homemade pizza as well. Hopefully now that winter is officially here (we just had the first snow of the season!) I will be more inclined to stay in every once in a while instead of trying to fill my week with as many plans as possible. Until the next kitchen adventure!

Lucia

Edamame Risotto

I had the pleasure of trying Edamame Risotto one summer evening with my parents while we were having dinner at Meridian Hills Country Club. I instantly fell in love and have wanted it ever since. It was something about the texture that hooked me. Also, I love risotto and edamame, so putting them together just seemed like a genius idea and I was jealous I didn’t come up with it all on my own.

I concocted a recipe and have had it saved on my computer, waiting for the right time to make it. I am fairly picky still so I decided on my own ingredients and a mixture of a bunch of recipes. I also don’t measure because I think it adds to the adventure! I have always been told how hard it is to make a good risotto, so I wanted my adventure to be at the right time. What better time than a night spent drinking wine and celebrating two of my best friend’s birthdays!

The Edamame Cooked in Sesame Oil and Seasoned

The Risotto cooking (you have to be patient and constantly stir!)

I was surprised at how easy I thought it was to make the risotto. This dish, which seemed so complicated at first, was fairly simple and I can’t wait to continue to experiment with the flavors.

Edamame Risotto

Sesame oil

1 tbsp unsalted butter

1 cup Arborio Rice

2 cups (or more) shelled edamame

Soy sauce (reduced sodium)

Ground ginger

2-½ tbsp olive oil

½ cup white cooking wine

4 cups hot water

Crumbled goat cheese

Romano cheese

Dried basil

Salt and pepper

Heat sesame oil over medium heat (just enough in to lightly cover the bottom the pan). Once hot, add the edamame,  lightly cover in soy sauce, and add a few shakes of ground ginger. Continue to stir until the liquid has evaporated and let cool.

Heat olive oil and butter in a large pan. Add the rice and coat in oil. Toast the rice for about 3 minutes. Reduce heat and add some garlic powder (a few shakes) and the white wine. Once the wine has evaporated, add in 1 1/3 cup of hot water. Stir continuously until the water has evaporated and the consistency is creamy. Continue this process two more times. Remember to keep stirring. Once the rice is creamy, but still slightly firm, remove from heat.

Add the cooked edamame, Romano cheese, basil (to taste), and some goat cheese (to taste). Season with salt and pepper and Enjoy!

Toasted Coconut Chocolate Cookies

Last weekend I was home in Indy and spending the day with my mom at home. She wasn’t feeling well, so I decided to bake while we spent time together! She had a recipe for some Chocolate Coconut cookies she found and was really wanting to try them, and luckily we had all of the ingredients!
I can’t wait until I have a big kitchen where I can have all kinds of baking ingredients and cooking tools on hand at all time. My kitchen now is pretty tiny and the more ingredients/tools I keep buying the smaller it seems to become. The cookies were fairly simple to make and turns out they are delicious!
My mom told me about a trick she read somewhere about how to make your cookies extra fluffy and to give them great shape. Once your dough is made, cover and put in the refrigerator over night. When you take out the next day to bake, the dough should rise perfectly in the oven and it will be easier to give them a good shape before baking!
We were instantly craving the cookies, so I didn’t wait, but next time I will try it out and let you know if it makes a difference. I took them to my Grandparent’s for Sunday dinner and everyone loved them. My Grandma even said they may be her favorite cookie so far, so I am sure I will be making these more often!
Toasted Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookies

Toasted Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookies

Preheat oven to 350º – Makes about 20 cookies
1 cup flaked sweetened coconut
4.5 ounces all-purpose flour (about 1 cup)
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/8 tsp salt
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 large egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 ounces dark chocolate, chopped
Cooking Spray
Put coconut in a small baking pan (in a single layer) and toast in the oven for about 7 minutes, or until golden brown and stir once. Remove from oven and let cool.
Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a small bowl and blend with whisk. Set aside.
Place brown sugar and softened butter into a mixing bowl and beat on medium speed until well blended. Beat in vanilla and egg. Add the flour mixture and beat on a low-speed until everything is combined. Stir in the coconut and the chocolate.
Cover the mixture and leave in the refrigerator over night. This helps to make the dough stick together and will make your cookies fluffier when you bake them.
When ready, put dough onto baking sheets (spray is optional) about an inch apart. Bake at 350º for 10 minutes.
Enjoy!

Last night I made dinner for some of my friends to celebrate their birthday’s. They are all starting to turn 25 and it is making everyone a little on edge…25 used to seem so old, but I don’t feel old and I don’t think they seem old…hopefully I will say the same thing when we are all turning 30! Anyway, I made Edamame Risotto so stayed tuned for that AMAZING and fairly easy recipe!

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