Monday, August 15, 2011

Baby Abroad

*Baby Abroad is a new feature to the Gravelys Go Global blog. My intent is to give a glimpse of our day to day life. It will focus more on the family/personal stuff of our life in Belgium. --Amanda

Let the Baking Begin

Last Thursday, we had a few students over to watch a movie. I thought this
would be the perfect time to "get my bake on" and make my first batch of
chocolate chip cookies in Belgium.

I love baking. Few things make me feel as relaxed and "myself" as creaming
butter and sugar, measuring out flour, and bringing a finished product out
of the oven. Baking has also become an expression of ministry for me.

It's taken me awhile to get my bearings personally and especially
ministry-wise not just since moving to Belgium, but really since having
Aidan--or even a few months before. So pulling out the flour and sugar and
eggs was more than just making a simple batch of cookies, it was a step
towards feeling like myself again.

The first thing I did was put on some James Taylor and pull out my
ingredients. (I love how listening to familiar music in an unfamiliar place
makes you feel more at home.)

This isn't all the ingredients, but a few are worth commenting on. I use
the traditional Nestle Tollhouse cookie recipe except that I substitute
shortening for butter. Why? Because that's how my mom makes them. Also, I
like the texture and look of the cookies made with shortening. Shortening
isn't easy to find here, and when you do find it, it isn't cheap. I found
the small can you see here on sale for 50% off, and it still cost about $5

Seeing how Belgium is the land of chocolate, you would think chocolate
chips would be falling from the sky. Surprisingly, no. I made do with
these two tiny bags of tiny chips. They got the job done.

Lovely batter

Aidan woke up from his nap. I think he's drooling.

The first batch got a little burned overdone, but once I adjusted my oven temp and moved the rack up we were in business.

The cookies were enjoyed by all, and we had a nice time getting to know a few of the SFC students here in Brussels.

I'm trying to decide what my next baking project will be. I'm thinking muffins.


William Horton said...

OK, I can't tell if Aidan is drooling, but I know I am. Glad to hear from you guys and that you are getting acquainted with the locals. Looking forward to your next post.
BTW: I love Marble Cake, hint!

Jim Ragsdale said...

Hey! Another James Taylor fan! Love it!

Billie said...

Your father wants some of those cookies!

Carlie Faulk said...

....and now it's midnight and I'm craving cookies!! :)

Dottie Gravely said...

Bet the students are glad Charles found himself a baking wife!!!

Charles said...

Not as glad as I am! those were some good cookies!