Chocolate-Chickpea and Oatmeal Cookies


Some cookbooks are great for recipes and some are great for inspiration. One of the best things about cooking and baking is that you can take so many risks. Sometimes the risks pay off and sometimes they don’t. If you are timid in the kitchen (sometimes I am) I suggest following recipes to the tee…but if you are willing to accept mistakes in the kitchen then you are ready for reaping the reward of the risk. I took a risk with these cookies, had they not turned out I would have wasted 2 cups of chocolate chips… I hate wasting chocolate chips.

When my oldest was young I received Deceptively Delicious
by Jessica Seinfield as a gift. Although I used some of the recipes in this book, I have almost always used it as a jumping point.

I hadn’t looked at this book for a very long time. The other day I pulled it out to look up something when I saw this recipe. Not sure if I had just never seen it or just passed it over because of lack of interest, but I could not believe what a great idea this was. Most of the recipes in this book uses purees which is great when you are feeding a family and a baby, but since my youngest is 5 I don’t have purees on hand so much anymore. This recipe however did not use a puree and I was digging the concept. To the untrained eye the garbanzo beans looked like macadamia nuts, if you chopped them coarsely they would look like a chopped walnut. Hiding nutrition never got so easy/yummy! I did however have to make some changes.

The first change I made was replacing the margarine with applesauce (I don’t buy margarine and this seems to be an acceptable oil substitution in baking). The second real change I made was subbing half of the flour with oat flour. Next, she used a whole 15oz can of garbanzo beans. I was a little worried that too many chickpeas and my kids wouldn’t eat them, plus I had frozen chickpeas in 1 cup increments so that’s what I used.

So here is my adapted recipe:

Chocolate-Chickpea and Oatmeal Cookies

1 Cup AP flour

1 Cup Oat flour*

½ Cup of Old Fashion Oats

¼ tsp of salt

1 tsp of Baking Soda

1 cup packed Brown Sugar (recipe here)

¾ cup Applesauce

2 Egg Whites

2 tsp Vanilla

1 cup Chickpeas (drained and rinced)

2 cups (12oz pkg) of Chocolate Chips

1 cup Walnuts (optional)

* I put Old Fashion Oats in a food processor and blend it up until it looks like course flour and keep it on hand, remember to measure after you blend.

First whisk flour, oat flour, oats, salt and soda together and set aside.

Then you will want to blend the brown sugar and applesauce together until well mixed. Add egg whites and vanilla and mix well.

Now you will want to stir in chickpeas, chocolate chips and walnuts.

Now slowly add the dry ingredients until everything is well combined. Drop on a greased baking sheet by the teaspoon and bake 11-13 minutes. (Jessica Seinfield says this recipe makes 2 dozen cookies, but I got almost 4.

These cookies exceeded my experimental expectations! They were cakey, moist, and chocolaty. Best of all, my kids did not even ask what the white things in the cookies were. The bean was undetectable and I am so excited about my new nutrition boosting secret weapon!

With heart, home and motherhood



How many Tablespoons in a Cup???


I came across a recipe the other day for microwave cake
in a cup. I have seen these recipes all over Pintrest and to be honest I have been pretty skeptical of the recipes.

It just doesn’t seem right to eat a cake that was baked in a microwave…What does seem right
is the fact that there is only one portion…not 16! So I finally gave in and tried it, I even made them for my boys and they were a hit. The blogger who posted the recipe suggests multiplying
the dry ingredients by 10 if you chose to make this quick cake even quicker.

I have multiplied and divided so many recipes in my motherhood, but never one like this. I wasn’t about to measure out 20 T of flour, then cocoa. . I know how many ounces are in ¾ cup and how many quarts are in a gallon, I can tell you how many cups in a pint…but I really needed to know how many Tablespoons were in a cup.

That’s when I remembered I had this cute little cookbook, a souvenir from Silver Dollar City in Branson, MO. This old fashioned cookbook, with 100 year old recipes laden in butter, lard and sugar also had very handy information
right in the back. I thought I would post some of these  conversions.  This post is more for my own record than anything else, but hopefully someone will find it useful!

Table of Equivalent Measures

A few grains

Less than 1/8 teaspoon

A Dash

Less than ¼ teaspoon

3 teaspoons

1 Tablespoon

16 Tablespoons

1 Cup

8 Tablespoons

½ Cup

6 Tablespoons

3/8 Cup

4 Tablespoons

¼ Cup

1 Cup

½ Pint

2 Cups

1 Pint

4 Cups

1 Quart

4 Quarts

1 Gallon

2 Gallons

1 Peck

4 Pecks

1 Bushel

2 Tablespoons

1 fluid Ounce

1 Cup

8 fluid Ounces

1 Pint

16 fluid Ounces

My next conversion post will be metric. In the meantime here is a Conversion Calculator!

With heart, home, and motherhood


DIY Chocolate Syrup


Not really sure if I mentioned this before or not, but my boys love
chocolate milk. I used to get them the powder mix because for some reason I had convinced myself if was better for them. (I think it was just self-preservation… don’t want to be caught squirting it directly into my mouth.) Anyhow, there are actually less ingredients (which usually means better for you) in store bought syrup than the powder mix.

When my little one switched to soy milk the powder would not mix and dissolve as well in the soy as the skim milk. For a while I just bought cartons of chocolate soy milk and cut it with regular soy milk (there is a lot of chocolate/sugar in already flavored milk). And because I like to control the amount of sugar (or at least think I’m controlling it) I needed to start making my own alternative because I was holding firm on the fact that I had never bought chocolate syrup for my boys and I never would.

So here is the super simple Chocolate

Basically, you make a Simple Syrup and flavor it.



1 cup


2 cup

Cocoa Powder

½ cup


1 tsp


½ tsp

  1. Start by combining Water, Sugar and Cocoa into a large sauce pan (you want a little bigger pot than you think, when it starts to boil it gets bigger).
  2. Over medium heat bring to a boil turn heat down a bit and stir constantly until the sugar is completely dissolved (about 2-3 min).
  3. Take pot off of heat and stir in Vanilla and Salt.
  4. Let cool and pour into squirt bottle or jar for storing in fridge. (I use condiment squirt bottles, they are about a dollar, but an old chocolate syrup bottle would be great!)

And that’s it! You can use it on Ice Cream or anything else you may want a touch of chocolate in/on!

With heart, home and motherhood


DIY Pancake Syrup


We use a lot of pancake syrup. A. LOT. And because I need to cut corners, I recently went in search for a recipe or some sort of alternative.

As much as I would love to, I just can’t afford to feed my children real maple syrup all the time…I would have to get my own tree…

Anyway, the answer is in the spice isle close to the vanilla somewhere. I got this bottle of Mapleine for about $4.25. For cost of 2 generic bottles of pancake syrup you can flavor a lot of pancake syrup…A. LOT.

The recipe is right on the bottle…

And just like my Chocolate Syrup recipe (coming soon) the syrup is Simple…What I mean is you make a Simple Syrup.

A Simple Syrup is 1 part water and 2 parts sugar. The sugar is completely dissolved into the water by heating; I gently boil while stirring constantly.

Simple syrups are great for making cold drinks, such as Iced Tea, sweet drinks…Sweet Tea. But they have other great uses as well.

Back to the syrup at hand, all you do is flavor the simple syrup with Mapleine and voila! Pancake syrup!


1 Cup Water

2 Cups Sugar

½ teaspoon Mapleine

Pour all into saucepan, gently heat to a boil and stir until all sugar has dissolved. Cool and pour into squirt bottle. (Old honey bears work great)

With heart, home and motherhood


DIY Brown Sugar


Up until a couple of months ago I thought there was some secret way brown sugar became BROWN. I knew that molasses was involved, but really there had to be a secret method right? So WRONG! And so glad I was wrong. Living on a shoestring budget has this girl looking for ways to cut back. Not only does this save money, it tastes better.

So how easy
is it? Let me tell you what you need: Sugar
and Molasses… (You may want a bowl and fork or a mixer and something to store it in as well…but I digress.)

Here is what you do. Place sugar in bowl. Pour molasses in bowl. Stir.

That’s easy peasy!

Here are the measurements:

Light Brown Sugar

1 Cup Sugar and 1 T Molasses or

5lb Sugar and ¾ cup (6oz.) Molasses

Dark Brown Sugar

1 Cup Sugar and 2 T Molasses or

5lb Sugar 12oz. bottle of Molasses

Thanks for stoppin’ by and let me know your favorite way to use molasses!

With heart, home and motherhood,


Crock Pot Chicken Broth


I hate buying chicken broth, but love to use it. Recently I began reading how easy it is to make. Some people have fancy recipes but the fact is, it is so easy that it is hard to mess up.
 Chicken (or turkey) Bones – (I also save any skin, tendons, or fatty parts that don’t get used)
 Vegetables
 Water
 Cider Vinegar (optional)
Okay, this week I bought a whole 4.2 lb. chicken for $3.77. I roasted it myself, took the meat off the bone for a recipe later in the week and put the bones/carcass in the crock pot. If you choose not to roast your own chicken you can buy one roasted for about $5.00.

Next I look for vegetables. You don’t have to get fancy here, use what you have on hand. I almost always have onion, carrots and celery. But you could put anything you want. Clean and cut veggies and put them on top of your bones.

Then I fill the crockpot with cold water until the bones and veggies are completely covered. I like to measure the water before and then compare how much I have when it is done. If you are using cider vinegar, add it with the water, about a tablespoon. I am not sure the science behind this, I have read a lot of recipes but one in particular said to soak the bones without heat for about an hour.
After the soak turn your crockpot on. I cook my broth for 18 – 24 hours. I start on Low heat and turn it to Warm sometime before I go to bed.


After the broth is finished let it cool. (It’s hard to wait, but you don’t want to burn yourself.) Strain the liquid to separate it from the bones and veggies. You can strain it one more time through a cotton/linen towel if you choose.
I measure it out in 2 cup increments and freeze it flat in a quart size freezer bag or refrigerate it for about a week.
I hope you can see how much money you can save and how much healthier it is to make your own chicken broth. So don’t throw out those bones, throw them in the crockpot!
With home, heart and motherhood