It is a beautiful day today in Arizona, I never thought I would be saying that on July 17th. It is only going to be 98 degrees today, I feel like that is a cold front compared to the rest of the country right now. It is definitely a dry heat and not much humidity. I am still missing Michigan and the lake, but for now I will enjoy my cooking and entertaining. However, I left half my kitchen in Michigan since we are going back, so no kitchen aid or cutting board or my favorite utensils. I will have to improvise and make do. In my very first post I said I would talk later about Pete’s and my relationship or how it all started, and since we just celebrated twenty two years together I figured now would be a good time to tell you our love story. We started dating back in the 70’s, Pete is way older than I am, four years! The first time I saw him, my Father was the Golf Pro at Bloomington Country Club in Bloomington Illinois. I had just received my drivers license and went to tell my Father the good news. Pete and another friend of his, Michael Bradley were sitting there chatting, and when I walked in they asked my Dad, who is that girl? My Dad said don’t even think about it boys. Will needless to say they decided to make a bet and play a few holes of golf, whoever had the lowest score would then win, and would ask me out. To my delight Pete won the bet and we went out, I was sixteen, he was twenty. It was love at first sight. I went home and told my parents this is the man I’m going to marry. We had a fabulous dating life for three years. I had always wanted to go to college and pursue a fashion career and had looked into it, but decided I wanted to travel instead. Pete graduated from Illinois Wesleyan and I graduated high school. We were sitting in our basement one night and he asked me to marry him, I started to cry and said I love you so much and you are the love of my life, but I feel I am to young to get married. We dated for another year, and then my parents went through a divorce, and being an only child I was devastated. I just knew I had to get out of the town I grew up in and pursue my dreams of travel, even though that meant leaving Pete behind. It was 1980 and I went off to become a Flight Attendant for Eastern Airlines. I trained in Miami and then off to New York City to live. I never got over Pete and compared everyone that I went out with to him. I had heard from mutual friends and family that Pete was getting married to a girl from our home town. I went on to marry a pilot for Eastern Air Lines and was married for three long years, in a very abusive marriage. I finally got the courage to leave one day after being locked in a 21 foot boat for three hours in Florida in the middle of summer. Pete was married for seven years. I was visiting my Mother one day in Illinois after my separation. Our parent’s had remained friends over the years, and I got a call from Pete’s Mother saying you are not going to believe this but Pete is separated too. I got off the phone and was jumping all over the place and so excited to hear that. I had never ever gotten over him, I would dream about him every night and always wondered how he was. He called me when I returned to Florida and said he had to see me, that he had never gotten over me either. It was just where we had left off years ago when we saw each other. We were apart for twelve years and then I finally married the love of my Life, and as I said we have been married now for twenty two years. We truly have been blessed to be each others best friend. We have two beautiful boys we couldn’t be more proud of. And that is our love story. These cookies that I have posted today are one of Pete’s favorites. This recipe came from another wonderful chef and one of our best friends, Larry Foster. Thanks Larry for always being there for us, and knowing the answer to every question we have ever asked. There is nothing better then these melt in your mouth, buttery, crispy, addictive Oatmeal Crisps.
3 cups rolled oats (not quick-cooking)
2 sticks butter (it has to be butter and I like Land O Lakes)
1-1/2 cups light brown sugar
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F.
Line a sheet pan with parchment paper or a baking mat.
Put 2 cups of the oats in the food processor and pulverize until finely ground and floury.
In a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter until soft and smooth. Mix in the brown sugar. Add the eggs and vanilla and mix until well blended.
In another bowl, stir together both the ground and whole oatmeal, the baking soda and salt.
With the mixer running at low speed, add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture and mix until just blended. (The cookie dough can be made and kept refrigerated for up to 3 days before baking. Or you can make lumps of dough and freeze them in a locked plastic bag, then take them out for baking a few at a time.
Drop the batter by teaspoonfuls onto the pan, leaving 3 inches between them, as they will spread. Bake until lightly browned, about 13 to 15 minutes. Let cool on the pan, then remove with a spatula.
I bet you can’t each just one!