Friday, October 21, 2011

Oatmeal Cookies and Bay Leaf Tea

Today my siblings and I took a long walk to get the mail and observe nature. We saw lizards, ant hills, yellow-faced birds, rescued a moth and collected lots of acorn caps ( : When we got home, we made a little display of our findings and brewed some Bay Laurel leaf tea. I have a book called "Kashaya Pomo Plants" that has natural remedies in it from Northern California plants. I will add this book to my book list for your convenience.

Bay Laurel Tea
Made from the leaves of the California Bay Laurel or "Peppernut" tree, this tea can be used to wash sores or taken internally to treat colds and sore throats.
Brew 3-4 leaves per cup of water to make a dark tea.
We found that when we brewed it briefly the resulting liquid was strong enough to make us sneeze! So, we drank it rather weak, but we're hoping it will help clear up some of the colds around the house.
(NOTE: It's important when making teas or using the zest or peel from fruits that you make sure they are organic and have never been sprayed with pesticides, or you could become ill.)

After the tea, Amani and I made up our own recipe for oatmeal cookies!
Mixing! This is the only one that wasn't 100% blurred, he's a very dedicated mixer!
Waiting for the cookies to be done: Licking apples always helps.

They're done!

Olivia approves

Cherry Oatmeal Cookies

1/2 unsalted butter, softened
1 cup sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 tbs maple syrup
1 egg
1 cup instant oats
1 cup flour
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp cardamom
1/2 salt
1/2 Tbs baking soda
1/2 cup chopped, dried cherries

Preheat the oven to 350 F

Cream butter and sugars together. Add syrup, egg and oatmeal. Add dry ingredients. Chop cherries and stir into dough. It should hold together.
Roll into balls about the size of a golf ball and slightly compress onto oiled cookie sheet. Bake for 12 minutes. The edges should be golden and crisp, but the middle may still be a bit wet. That is actually perfect! Let them cool for a few minutes on the sheet and then transfer to a wire cooling rack. The edges will be slightly crispy while the center of the cookie will stay soft and chewy! (:

This was an experiment that worked for us today, but it has only been tested once. I'll try it again another day and make sure it still works well!
Bon Appetit!

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