We are back from Paris and Vienna! Before we left I promised an oops-we-got-fat-in-Paris post and guess what?! We got fat in Paris! Croissants every morning for breakfast (and sometimes two), macaron morning snacks (The Boyfriend learned just before our trip that there is a difference between macarons and macaroons and his coconut-hating mind was BLOWN), wine with lunch, afternoon snacks of crepes on crepes on crepes, cheese for cocktail hour and then suddenly it was dinnertime! Steak tartare, escargot, steak frites, anything Provencal, and should we even talk about dessert? One night we got a macaron layer cake which what I imagine French children (er, adults?) beg for at the mall instead of double doozies from Great American Cookie. (French children, like Suri Cruise, probably save their tantrums for off-the-rack clothing and peasant wines.)
And then Vienna! We didn’t know what to expect, and we got Weiner schnitzel (and I got mine cordon bleu, helloooo ham and cheese). The Boyfriend ate at least a million wursts in the two days we were there, all from glorified hot dog stands around town — they would cram a hoagie roll on a very Game of Thrones heated spike to hollow out the middle of the roll AND toast it from the inside out, then squirt spicy mustard in the hole, followed by a sausage which had — just moments before! — been sizzling on their grill, and hand it over. All of the delicious sausage juices ran into the bottom of the roll while we ate, so even I couldn’t get them on my clothes and when we finished the sausage we were left with the most amazing few bites of mustardy, juicy roll.
So, yeah, we got fat. I’m planning a what-we-ate-in-Paris-and-Vienna post with details on restaurants for anyone who is heading that way. That should be up soon! Until then, we’re working on adjusting back to the Real World. We landed on Saturday morning and I was inspired to eat super healthy and repent for all the croissants. But then there was construction on the subway and we ended up on a bus in Brooklyn in horrible traffic (which we had initially tried to avoid by taking the subway) and then it started raining, just as we were headed home. And I just really needed a cookie, repentance be damned.
- 1 bag semi-sweet chocolate chips (2 cups or 12 ounces)
- 1 t. vanilla extract
- ¾ c. heavy cream
- 1½ c. powdered sugar
- ⅓ c. softened butter
- ½ c. sugar
- ½ t. salt
- 1 t. vanilla extract
- 1 t. baking powder
- 1 egg
- 1½ c. flour
- ⅓ c. milk
- Melt chocolate with vanilla and heavy cream on medium heat on the stovetop. Whisk the chocolate mixture a bit to keep it from burning.
- Once all the chocolate is melted, turn off the burner and whisk in powdered sugar until it's fully incorporated. (If you do this quickly, while the chocolate is still super melty, the final icing will be smoother. But if you take a little longer, like I did, you'll have a few lumps. No one who actually eats the cookies will care.)
- Set aside to cool until the icing gets fudge-y and thick.
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
- Cream butter, sugar, salt, vanilla, and baking powder.
- Beat in the egg. Gently mix in the flour and milk. (I alternate these because something about baking science? But I'm not sure. I stirred in ¾ c. flour, then the ⅓ c. milk, then the last ¾ c. flour, but that was probably overkill. Follow your heart.)
- Use a teaspoon to drop the cookie batter onto a lightly greased cookie sheet. (Tip: line your cookie sheet with aluminum foil to save clean up time. Yo welcome.) Leave room for the cookies to spread, but accept that they are going to mush into each other, and that's a-okay.
- Bake for 10 minutes or so -- until the edges of the cookies are barely brown and, when you look on the bottom, they are a light, toasty color.
- Let the cookies cool on the cookie sheet for 10 minutes or so.
- When they are cool enough to ice, flip the cookies over and spread icing on the bottom. No, you're doing it wrong. Realllly pile that icing on there. That's better. Remember: this is an icing pillow, welcoming you home from a long day of travel and cushioning the blow of your return to work.