• PB Peanut Butter Cookies, Fermentation, and Garlic

    (What a random group of things to write about in one post. Yet, it’s a perfect display of the variety at the Hillcrest Market.)

    I was on a mission this week at the market. Unlike my usual trip of meandering around, seeing what looks good, and making decisions once at the market, this week I came with a list. First, I needed to make peanut butter cookies as a thank you gift, and I was just thinking that some PB Peanut Butter would add so much to the cookie, as PB provides something a bit more special than your regular peanut butter (though, they have that, too.)

    This peanut butter is a dessert in itself. With flavors like white chocolate, toffee, and cinnayum- who needs jelly on the sandwich- or really, who needs a sandwich, period? Just eat this straight out of the jar with a spoon, and that’s it. Patrick explained that his brother Matt opened the business about 2 years ago. They take pride in knowing their product is so healthy composed of just peanuts and the added flavor (cinamon, white chocolate, etc.), nothing else!A recommendation: bring your empty jar back for $1 off your next purchase.

    Next, I wanted to pick up a dip/spread for the week. I have been really into sandwiches lately, and I love to spread unique flavors onto my toast before loading the sandwich up with all sorts of vegetables, cheeses, etc. The market is an ideal place to sample dips to find that perfect accompaniment. I went over to Mediterranean Delights to grab an emulsified garlic dip.

    The great thing about this spread is that it can double as a marinade. Daniel suggested the honey garlic paste as an aid in making honey chicken or shrimp. He also suggested the black olive dip to use in tuna salad as a substitute for mayonaise. That sounded so good, that I had to chose that flavor. Daniel explained that the most popular dip of all, though, is the spicy garlic paste.

    I was laughing because two of the people purchasing the spread after me were asking if the list of ingredients listed on the tub is truly all that is in the dip. They couldn’t believe it! They were relieved to know it’s so healthy, considering it’s become a regular occurrence to consume the whole tub in one sitting… I can totally see how that can happen!

    My next stop was Happy Pantry. One of my favorite market stands. I cannot get enough of Mark’s California Kimchi. I’m addicted. Seriously, it is so spicy and gingery, and I feel so good after eating it! It’s probably because it is literally living food, each jar containing its own microbial universe, as Mark explained.

    Mark also told me that his fermented products are raw, organic, and full of probiotic amazing-ness. He has kombuchas each week, altering the flavors always. He also sells 8 staple sourkrauts and some kimchi. He has a variety of seasonal fermented, pickled products like rockin beets, Indian rutabaga, and scarrots (which, he explained, are scary carrots.)

    When I got home I got to work on those cookies. The Toffee Peanut Butter Pretzel Chocolate Chip Cookies. Yep. I found the recipe here, and slightly altered (improved) it with the addition of PB peanut butter.

    Crushed pretzels give the cookies such a nice crunch and saltiness, to contrast the extra sweetness from the toffee. Semi sweet chocolate chips balance out the sweetness too, with their bitterness.

    The dough is really pretty and festive, it was hard to not eat it by the spoonful…

    Little imperfect dough bites make for the perfect bite size cookie…

    Like most cookies, these are best straight out of the oven, but of course they’re welcome just about anytime…

    Is there a better way to say “Thank you” than with cookies?”

    To balance out the sugar and butter from the cookies, strawberries are a great idea. If you noticed at the market, many tents are just overflowing with the bright red jewels. Get yourself some, quick! Tis the season! Jenna at Suzie‘s asked I also tell everyone about Suzie’s Strawberry Jam on April 20 from 10-4. Should be a good time, full of fresh berries! Yum!

    See you next week!

    -Market Girl


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