I’m so excited to introduce today’s fantabulously fierce guest blogger today, Nancy from Gotta Get Baked!
Have you guys met Nancy? I can’t believe it’s been a scant 2 months since I first found her amazing, witty, stitch-in-my-side-hilarious blog, but after we had dinner in Vancouver two months ago we both became quickly convinced of our past-life status as clones. With me as the slightly less brilliant and profound clone.
You’ll see what I mean when you read the following guest post–I relished every word of her crisp, clear writing voice, and she’s humorous to boot. So without further ado, folks: here she is!
Update: In her main post, Nancy mentions the Isla Vista shootings and violence–against women, in particular–that relate in some ways to the post below, though she wrote it well before the tragic events on Friday. I’d like to send my prayers to those whose lives have been changed by the tragedy, and plead with you all to remain vigilant, compassionate, and above all, safe.
Hi everyone, I’m Nancy of gotta get baked. Ala ‘n I have been having a little lady love affair lately, singing each other’s praises and appearing (probably far too often) on each other’s blogs. What can I say? I’m a ridiculously easy person to love.
Blogging has made me braver and bolder. I’m a naturally suspicious person, believing that everyone is dastardly and evil until they prove me wrong. I was always “that girl” at the club (back in my clubbing days when I was young and beautiful). My friends would be dancing and having a good time and I’d be the one with my arms crossed, glaring at the men who would dare to start grinding against us in the hopes they’d get lucky because seriously dude, a) don’t fucking touch me cause I don’t know you from Adam and b) don’t even think about going near any of our drinks, you roofie-toting-scumbag! I ride transit with my bag clutched to my chest because everyone is a pickpocket. I don’t want to sell my shit on craigslist because with my luck, I’ll be murdered, dismembered and I STILL wouldn’t have gotten rid of whatever crap I’m trying to sell.
I’ve gone straight up crazy. When I first started blogging, I didn’t use my real name anywhere. Any photos I’d post of me would have my face hidden behind giant sunglasses, a glass of wine or those computer generated swirls. Fast forward a year and I’ve created a Google+ account using my real name. MY REAL NAME, people! I got business cards printed with my real name on it. I talk about where I live and my profession, meaning it’s damn easy to hunt me down.
I’ve also started meeting complete strangers on my own in dark, far off places. Case in point – Ala (if that’s even her real name!) commented on one of my recent posts and then proceeded to tell me she was coming to Vancouver for a “conference”. We then made plans to meet up. I don’t know who was more stupid – me for picking her up at UBC on a Friday night (it was like a ghost town) and inviting her into my car, or Ala for agreeing to climb into my SUV with blacked out windows in a strange city where no one knows where she is or what she’s doing. Thankfully, it all ended well and I can say that we’re both still alive I’ve made a new friend for life.
After dinner, as we were climbing back into my car, I turned to her and said, very seriously, “I don’t mean to scare you but…” at which point her face turned white and she was sure that I was going to tell her I had bodies in the trunk, with which she would soon be joining. I was tempted but figured I’d give the girl a break.
The moral of the story is: be smart, be aware, but also be open to all the wonderful people there are in the world. You never know who you’re going to connect with and if you give yourself and others a chance, something fabulous can happen.
Speaking of fabulous, the recipe I’m sharing with you today is the best cookie I’ve ever made (bold words, I know, but here me out!). They’re super soft, chewy, caramel-y with a hint of rum and filled with chocolate and chopped up Turtles. Divine.
Brown Sugar Turtles Cookies (adapted from Two Peas and Their Pod)
Brown Sugar Turtle Cookies
Adapted from Two Peas and Their Pod.
- 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tsp baking soda
- 2 tsp cornstarch
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
- 3/4 cup unsalted butter, at room temp
- 1 cup packed brown sugar
- 1 large egg, at room temp
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 tsp rum extract (optional)
- 1/2 cup chocolate chips
- 1 ½ cups chopped up Turtles (or a similar chewy-nutty-chocolate)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, cornstarch, salt, and cinnamon.
- Place butter and brown sugar in the bowl of an electric stand mixer. Beat on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3-5 minutes. Turn off the mixer and scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the egg, vanilla and rum extract. Mix on medium speed until combined.
- Add the dry ingredients slowly, mixing only until just combined. Stir in the chocolate chips and the chopped up Turtles.
- Using an ice cream scoop (I like my cookies big), form balls of cookie dough. Place 6 of the balls onto the prepared cookie sheet, evenly spaced apart at least two inches. Bake cookies for 10 to 12 minutes, or until lightly browned around the edges. Seriously - do not over bake. It’s better to err on the side of underbaked because the cookies continue baking after they leave the oven and you want the insides to be gooey and soft. Remove from the oven. If you use an ice cream scoop like I did, the cookies won’t flatten much. Using the back of a spoon, tap the tops of the cookies until they flatten a bit. Cool on the pan for 2 minutes then transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely.
Eat and enjoy! I certainly did – in fact, I couldn’t stop devouring them. The rum tastes amazing (because obviously, rum), the caramel and pecans in the Turtles are wonderfully chewy, giving the cookies a fabulous textural contrast. It just all works together, like magic.
Thanks so much to Ala for having me here in her beautiful space!
Haha! Didn’t you love that or what? As an important safety side note, I’d like to add that it’s always a really good idea to lay out your safety steps before meeting anyone for the first time, blogger or otherwise. I always contact at least five (yep, count ’em–five) friends and let them know a) where I’m going, b) who I’m going with, and c) when I return a call letting them know I’m back safely before meeting a new face. Then I call them back pronto at the time I’ve assigned, so they know that they don’t need to call the SWAT team.
Sound extreme? Maybe. But as Nancy pointed out, we are a paranoid pair, and it really never hurts to be safe! It makes being open to meeting new folks that much more enjoyable, and I wouldn’t have missed meeting Nancy for the world.
Loving what you read today? Connect with Nancy!
31 Replies to “Guest Post from Gotta Get Baked: Brown Sugar Turtles Cookies”
Nancy, this post is nothing short of brilliant. And then there is the recipe! Looks super yummy and I will definitely make it. I feel very in tune with your post. I am naturally a very positive person who prefers to keep negativity out of her life. I’ve let a couple of friends drift away over the past years because they were bringing more negative thought than positive thought to the friendship. I’m a glass half full person for sure. Having said all that, it’s impossible not to feel sad and empathetic for those who have lost their lives and their loved ones. There is such extreme misery in the world on many levels and some days it’s impossible not to feel that. Must say, baking sure does help since it’s the best self-therapy I know. Now having said all that, about ten years ago I met several women online, chatting about a tv show. Over time we got to know each other very well and bonded beautifully. Of course we were very careful. Now, after all these years, two of them are the best friends I could ever have! We don’t live near each other but email almost every night. We travel together every summer. We always have so much fun that I jokingly say we could have a ball taking the trash out! But it’s kinda true! My life changed immeasureably for the better the day I “met” them. I guess what I’m saying is to remind oneself to take the joy from every day. We know it, but sometimes forget. Thanks again for this wonderful post!
Vickie, thank you so much for this wonderful, eloquent, open comment. “I feel very in tune with your post” <– I really needed to hear that this morning. I wish I were a "glass half full" kinda person like you. I definitely stray towards the negative "glass half empty, hell, it might as well be empty" mentality, even though I try to see the bright side. I usually take in terrible news stories for a few days and then let it go but this newest tragedy is really hitting me hard. I'm feeling this unfathomable sadness that I can't shake. Baking is definitely the best self-therapy! I'm so thrilled you met your online friends and have become so close. I feel that way about most of the wonderful men and women I've met through blogging (as you can see by how much I love 'n admire Ala). Have a wonderful day!
Nancy, I’ll remember you in my thoughts over the next few days and perhaps that, and those of your friends, will help you work through this rough patch of sadness. Know that you’re not alone in this big sometimes awful world.
Rum? Yes, please. Although I’d just use the real stuff. 😀 These sound great. Wonderful guest post — thanks.
Lol, thanks, John! I agree with you about the real rum – I usually prefer to use (and drink) that, but I wasn’t sure how it would affect the consistency of my dough. In the future, I plan on tinkering around with this recipe and see how I can incorporate the real and vastly superior stuff. Have a fabulous day!
Hi Nancy, After reading your remarks above and thinking about all of the stupid stuff that came out of my mouth when I was a single guy in college, I’m a little ashamed. Now? Karma definitely got me because I have a daughter. At least I can tell her not to marry someone like me, eh? LOL. I can also relate to trying to protect (most likely in vain) what little privacy I have in the virtual world. (I am using an alias, after all.)
From a cookie standpoint, I’m impressed by their soft center and I doubt that they would last an hour if I made them for my family.
Ala, I’m glad to see you take some precautions when meeting people. You can never be too careful. I’ll also tell you the same thing I told Nancy which is that I’m happy to see you two have become so close in such short amount of time. Maybe there is hope in this crazy world…
DB, it sounds like you’re completely on the right boat now–and with a daughter, I’m sure you’ll be a great dad with her best interests in mind. She’s very lucky! It’s sort of crazy how quickly Nancy and I got to know each other, and it still amazes me that I’ve met amazing bloggers like yourself through her. In that respect, we are all pretty lucky! Thank you for stopping by, it’s always a pleasure to see you around.
Thanks, DB! I think we’ve all drunk the kool-aid and gave up our privacy a long time ago, lol. Everything we’ve ever posted is out there for the world to see, forever! I’m sure you were never a disgusting pig like some of the guys I’ve encountered in the past, just as I’m sure you’re a wonderful husband and father. I fully support you semi-terrifying the boys your daughter will eventually bring home (gulp!). They need to know what’s up! As for these cookies, they are indeed soft and a little bit chewy, which I love. A friend of mine, who is squarely in the crunchy cookie camp, liked the flavour but not the texture. I’m an equal opportunity cookie-lover – they’re all welcome in my mouth! Thanks for your comments here and on my blog. I always love reading what you have to say, DB!
Can I just say I’m getting THE BEST image of you mean mugging guys at the bar and hovering over the drinks? Unfortunately, I tend to be more of the “everyone is awesome and good” type, but I’ve learned over the years to set good boundaries and make sure trust is something earned, not just given to anyone with an innocent looking smile. These cookies look outrageously good. The chew…the melty chocolate…the golden brown top! I die.
P.S. I’m totally loving reading about your friendship, though it sort of feels like I’m listening in on a love story…is that weird? 😉
Courtney, didn’t you know that Nance and I orchestrated the whole thing just so you’d feel that way? 😉 from your comment, it’s clear you know why I’m so smitten with her work, though. I was honestly a little bit glad I didn’t read this post before I met Nance, because I can totally imagine her owning those drunk clubbers and the fear that she’d kick my butt in person is a little bit frightening 😀 just kidding, but she’s definitely not someone I would want to mess with now! Hah!
Courtney, I have a bitchy resting face so I always look like I’m glowering at the world. You’re just like one of my best friends – she’s the most trusting, warm-hearted, positive person I know. which unfortunately means she also gets taken advantage of sometimes, which drives me absolutely crazy because she doesn’t deserve that. As for Ala ‘n me, it’s amazing how quickly we hit it off. Just as I’m sure we will too when we meet in July at F&W. Can’t wait, girl!
For the record, Courtney, Nancy does not have a bitchy resting face. Can’t wait to see this adorable but I-can-and-will-kick-your-butt-empowered-woman face in a few months!!
oh my gawd, I love this post. . and hell, all anonymity goes out the window when you’re a blogger. Just accept it, yo. I love love love your story about when you were younger hittin’ up the clubs. . I can just see you glaring at all of those guys .. I was also a really suspicious person, and still am when it comes to my kids but I love how you ended this post. . hopefully there are more wonderful people in this world, more connections to be made. . we just have to have some hope in people right? love this and freaking love the cookies. They are perfection.
Ooh, I feel like things would change for me if I had kids to worry about as well, though I’m sure you manage that balance perfectly. And aren’t Nancy’s stories the absolute best?! You can just see her striding in there and, pow pow pow! K.O., Nancy wins 😀 gotta love her!
Alice, I love ya, girl! You know how much I love ‘n appreciate all of your awesome comments. Wish I could send you a batch of cookies!
Oooh, these cookies look amazing, Nancy!! Now why didn’t I think of these? I guess I’ll just have to bake up a batch and thank you for it. Ala, you two make such a cute pair of blogger friends!!!
Haha! You’re the first one to put it so plainly, Liz. That’s just it. Here, have a link for your awesomeness! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pz2umfSMIuM&t=201 (That’s for Nancy, too. I may or may not be the seal.)
My other favorite part of this friendship is getting to meet all y’all, like I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t have otherwise and I’m so glad we’ve connected, Liz. Have a fabulous Thursday 🙂
I love seeing you over here!! Your friendship with Ala is so amazing and makes me smile every time I see you two together on the interwebs. of course it doesn’t help that there is always a major delicious outcome but let’s just say I am here for the love only? And Oh my Gosh, I am so glad that I am not the only paranoid one in the world. Like seriously, I think the world is out to get me. Craiglist is a no-no and when I meet people for the first time, I always text like three people their name, phone numbers and anything else I know. On my first date with my hubby, I texted my best friend his picture (which I took secretly as he walked up to me) and his car plates just incase I was kidnapped. She retold that story (shamefully for me) during her toast on our wedding day. But you are right, you can never be too careful!! I’m so glad Ala trusted you and you too are the cutest besties!!
These cookies are so happening. That’s all I can say. All that oozing is making me drool.
Dawww “the cutest besties.” I hope you’re reading this, Nance! Pahahaha <3 thanks so MUCH, Zainab! You're an awesome bloggy friend, too, and don't you forget it. I so totally agree about the paranoia though, and Craigslist is also a no-no for me unless I have a mafia-esque entourage following in my wake. LOVE the story about your hubs--haha! It sounds like something I would totally do (I'm getting in the habit of looking at license plates and sending them as well. What awesome, tolerant friends we must have ;) ) But I'm glad to know I'm not the only one!
Awwww, thanks Zainab! You’re such a sweetheart. You know the admiration is totally mutual, right? As for paranoia – if there were a contest for most paranoid, I’d totally win. I met up with my best friend for dinner last night and we left the restaurant at about 10 pm. Even though the transit station was only about a minute walk away, I made her get into my car and I drove her like, thirty seconds, to the station entrance because God knows how many bad guys could attack her in that time! I love the story about your first date with your hubs. It’s sad but true – you gotta watch your back at all times, no matter how safe ‘n normal the person you’re meeting seems! All the better when they prove that they’re trustworthy.
Such a great post from the blogger meet-up to the luscious cookies! My family would devour an entire batch in a day, guess that means I better make a double batch!
Haha! I don’t even think I’d need a family to polish these off in a day (though it’s probably better for all if I had that help). I hope you report back if you do make them, I’m equally stoked. Thanks a bundle, Deb–hope it’s not so dusty and hot around your part of the state!
Lol, thanks Deb! These cookies are extremely devourable so I fully support your plan on making a double batch! Happy Friday!
This post has really made me think. I mean, really made me think. I’ve met many bloggers over the past year but normally at scheduled events. I’ve exchanged packages with bloggers overseas and eaten all sorts of things out of complete trust that… well, the online identity is the real, authentic, honest person that I hope it is. You’re completely right that being too guarded will prevent us from connecting with wonderful people that may (and already do) enrich our lives in ways that we never thought possible. I never thought I’d make such amazing friends through blogging and it’s been through giving of myself and allowing myself to connect. But now I’m thinking about the negatives. Bah! Darn it.
I might just cheer myself up with these cookies… oh my gosh. Stunningly gooey and delicious.
Thanks Ala and Nancy for this joint post and food for thought (and stomach) x
Thanks so much, Laura. This was an awesome comment for me to read this morning, as well as the one you left on my blog. I think it really comes down to instinct. It’s really amazing how I’ve fully thrown myself into the world of blogging and have communicated and met up with people I’ve met online. I NEVER thought I would but I just feel really safe in this community. I highly doubt some maniac would take the time to create a fake blog, blog for a few years, just in the hopes that they lure unsuspecting fellow bloggers into some elaborate trap. I’m happy to hear that you’ve made a lot of genuine connections. And you definitely need to cheer yourself up with cookies. It’s how I self-medicate 😉
It’s super important to be safe–I agree that you need to be vigilant! I had Hayley (The Domestic Rebel) stay with me in NYC and there was a part of me that was like “I’ve never met this girl and she’s going to be staying in my home….eeeep” all ended well there as well though so *phew*!
Anyway-you girls rock and HOLYYYYY LORRRRD IN HEAVEN these. cookies!!!! They look so big and beautiful and full of flavor and good stuff! OBSESSSSSSSED! Pinning 🙂
Haha! Oh man, Kayle, talk about brave on a whole other level–that’s awesome that you housed a fellow blogger! (Though from what I’ve seen of Hayley’s blog, I’m sure she is so open and lovely to have around.) As Mad-Eye Moody says….Constant vigilance! Kind of like my self-control when I see these cookies Nancy made. It’s great to have you here, Kayle!!
Yummy! looks really tasty and beautiful
I will have six cookies please and a big glass of cold milk!!
Haha, Tara–I say the same thing! 😉
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