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Abrazos! xox Penny

Monday, January 23, 2012

A Biteful of Sugar...


Both new mommas had all their diagnostic tests done at Lenox Hill Hospital…the hospital that has been in the news so much. We were there for tests during the Beyonce-Jay Z-Blue Ivy craziness. However, both times they were ready to deliver, their midwife did not have any back-up available at Lenox Hill and so we all went to another hospital without the reported million dollar renovation! Ha!

For sure, I don’t want to spend another night in a hospital waiting room (luxe or worn) any time soon. Both of our babies came into the world with “difficult” deliveries and some complications that fortunately, turned out fine.

For one of my kiddoes, I was in the labor room assisting for about 8 hours and also spent more than an equal amount of time in the tiny waiting room. There was a family there coping with both a newborn delivered at 26 weeks, before the official “age of viability” (week 28) and a shocked and scared new mom struggling to regain normal blood pressure. Out of town relatives, friends filled the cramped waiting room offering support and solace. I wish I had had something comforting to offer them besides words. Of course, my first food thought was, “Where can I find them a kale salad?”

There is a bakery, One Girl Bakery, near the hospital that is known for its heartwarming cookies. Here is one of their recipes…just in case you have someone who could use a little TLC. For some reason, a biteful of sugar soothes…kale can always come later!

Old-Fashioned Graham Crackers

2 1⁄4 cups all-purpose flour
1⁄4 cup whole wheat flour
1⁄4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1⁄4 teaspoon baking soda
1⁄4 teaspoon table salt
1⁄2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1⁄2 cup granulated sugar
1⁄4 cup packed light brown sugar
1⁄4 cup turbinado sugar (Sugar in the Raw)

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flours, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat together the butter, granulated sugar, and brown sugar on medium speed until the mixture is light yellow and fluffy, about 3 minutes. With the mixer on low speed, add a third of the flour mixture and 1/4 cup of water. Mix for 30 seconds. Repeat this step once, then add the remaining flour mixture and mix just to combine.

Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead by hand for about 10 seconds. Divide the dough in half. Cover one half with plastic wrap and set it aside.

Place a sheet of parchment paper on a work surface, put the dough on the parchment, and top with a second sheet of parchment. Roll the dough out to about 1/8-inch thickness. Repeat with the second half of the dough. Chill the dough for about 30 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Remove the dough from the refrigerator, peel off both sheets of parchment, and put the dough on a cutting board. Using a square cookie cutter, cut out the dough, rerolling the scraps twice. Put the cookies 
on a parchment paper–lined baking sheet. Sprinkle each cookie with a pinch of turbinado sugar.

Bake, rotating the sheet halfway through, for 20 minutes, or until the cookies are a dark golden color around the edges. Let cool for 10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Makes 24.

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