Tag Archives: Chicago

Chocolate Gooey Marshmallow Cookies

Hey everyone. Hope you are all having a great weekend. Mine has been both relaxing and fun. Alex got tickets to the bulls game from work on Friday night. Last minute sporting event? I’m in! It was a great game and a bulls win! Love my Chicago sports.

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Saturday was spent being lazy around the house for the most part. I did go shopping with my sister and out for lunch. It was absolutely beautiful outside and we had wanted to get our first Black Dog Gelato of the year but they didn’t open until 2pm and it was only noon. Instead we went to a fabulous little boutique to look for bridal shower and rehearsal dinner dresses. This place is awesome and I left with two beautiful dresses. I cannot wait to wear them. Since we didn’t get our gelato, Amanda and I went next door to Frasca for a pizza and skillet cookie out on their patio. It is so nice to see the outdoor seating areas open. Everywhere was packed outside.

Today was spent cleaning up the house. I am in full out spring cleaning mode. Our front door/steps area was driving me insane. There were pine needles from our Christmas tree, sand from last summer, and leaves everywhere. Not to mention all the dirt, salt and everything else dragged in all winter long. This area is cut off from the rest of our apartment so it was easy to ignore by closing our inside front door but with the nice weather today I wanted to tackle this problem. I swept all the way down then hand scrubbed each of the steps to get off all the grossness. It is amazing how different it looks. I should have taken a before and after picture! Alex helped me clean up the inside of the house. There is nothing better than starting the week with a nice clean house.

To celebrate the nice weather and our hard work cleaning (aka I was looking for an excuse), I decided to make some cookies. I love anything chocolate and marshmallows are currently my obsession. I was perusing pinterest and found a recipe for rocky road cookies. It sounded good but I didn’t love the recipe so I made my own. I have these delicious cookies to share with you today. I could not wait to share this recipe with you. They are chocolately, gooey, soft, delicious. I could keep going but I won’t. Feel free to adapt to what you have. Add peanut butter chips instead of chocolate. Don’t have one of the nuts, use what you have! Don’t like nuts? Leave them out. Don’t leave out the marshmallows though. They make this cookie what it is. They melt down into almost a burnt caramel flavor and stay gooey at the same time. Just try it.

I started by creaming 2 sticks of butter, 1/2 cup white sugar and 1/2 cup of brown sugar in my stand mixer. Then the eggs were added one by one and the vanilla extract with the second egg.

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Then I whisked together 2 cups whole wheat pastry flour with 1 tsp each of baking powder and baking soda and 1/2 cup cocoa powder. This was gradually added to my butter mixture until combined. Note that this dough is very sticky and takes a bit of effort to combine well. Once the flour is all in, mix in 1 cup chocolate chips, 1 cup nuts (I used almonds and walnuts), and 1 1/4 cups mini marshmallows. I mixed this with my hands because it wouldn’t incorporate well with the mixer.

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Then I rolled the dough into about 2 Tbsp balls or about the size of a ping pong ball. Make them bigger or smaller as you would like. These do not spread out a lot in the oven so you can put them relatively close together.

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Bake for 13 minutes in a 350 degree oven. Let sit on the cookie sheets for 2-3 minutes before removing to a cooling rack.

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Chocolate Gooey Marshmallow Cookies (Makes ~3 dozen cookies)

Ingredients:

2 cups whole wheat pastry flour (or sub all purpose flour)

1/2 cup cocoa powder

1 tsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

2 sticks salted butter

1/2 cup granulate white sugar

1/2 cup brown sugar

2 eggs

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 cup chocolate chips

1 cup chopped nuts (i used almonds and walnuts)

1 1/4 cup mini marshmallows

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Cream room temperature butter and both sugars together

2. Add the eggs one at a time, incorporating well before adding the second. Add the vanilla extract

3. Whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder and cocoa powder.

4. Gradually add the flour mixture to the butter, mixing well to combine.

5. Once all the flour is combined, add in the chocolate chips, nuts, and marshmallows. Mix together.

6. Roll into 2 Tbsp balls (about the size of a ping pong ball)

7. Place on parchment paper lined cookie sheets and bake for 13-14 minutes

8. Remove from oven, let sit for 2-3 minutes before moving the cooling racks to cool completely.

9 Store in an airtight container. Or eat them all right away. Sharing with friends is optional

I hope you all enjoy these cookies as much and Alex and I did. We could not stop eating them fresh out of the oven. Some are getting sent with him to work tomorrow to get them out of the house. Let me know what you think when you make the cookies.

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New Computer, Good Fun

For the past 5 months this little blog has been quiet, not because I forgot about it but because my computer died. It has been rough. Alex would let me borrow his but I didn’t have the freedom of my own computer to load pictures, edit them, and spend the time to write posts. But, my new computer is finally here! I got the Yoga Pro 2. This thing is fancy schmancy. It can fold back on itself to act as a tablet, stand in tent mode, or be a regular computer. It is the same computer as Alex has and I use tent mode in the kitchen all the time. It ah-mazing. It was nice testing out the computer before getting it. Hopefully Alex doesn’t mind too much that I have the same computer as him!

Here is a quick update of things that have happened!

Christmas/Holiday Season. Yay for crown’s in our poppers this year

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Mardi Gras in St Louis. So much fun! No pics because I was having too much fun taking pics with my friend Andy’s camera instead of my own

My first Chicago Blackhawks Game!

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Went shopping with my favorite girls for bridesmaid dresses!

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Played in downtown Chicago with one of my besties, congrats to her on her first big girl job!

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Went cake tasting for the wedding! Yumm cake

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Also, lots of good food made by me and eaten out. Many hours spent in the gym. I have a 10 miler planned at the end of May with my Dad. It will be his first big race. I’m pretty pumped for him. It’s been too cold to run outside, still in the low 40s, so there have been many miles clocked on the treadmill. I’ve been loving my Nia classes. For those who don’t know what that is-it is a sensory based movement/dance class that uses moves from latin dances, lyrical dance, tai chi, and more. It is great to dance it out once a week. Love it! I’ve been trying to squeeze in more weights and yoga to tone up but I tend to slack in these areas.

That is a lot of random in one go. I have a few recipes I want to share here on burgers n berries. Hopefully those will be coming shortly after this!
What has been new with you since I was last in the blog world?

 

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Chicago Half Marathon Race Recap

I always love reading the race recaps on the blogs I follow and I think it is a wonderful idea for writing down how you felt during the race and after then use it to remember that race. Whew… that was a long sentence and probably a run-on but oh well. Anyways. My race day started nice and early at about 4:50 AM. Alex and I decided that we would drive to the race instead of take public transport because it would have taken over an hour and a half to get there by bus/train. Driving=30 minutes=more sleep. I woke up about 10 minutes before we left as I had packed the night before. I drank some coffee while I made my typical pre-run breakfast of 2 whole wheat waffles with cream cheese and chia seeds. My plan was to eat the on the way. Once I was ready, Alex got woken up and we climbed into the car. We picked up my sister on our way since she lives so close. The whole way to the race my stomach was a mess. I was so worried about not being able to finish or getting picked up by the slagging wagon. I had not prepared very well for this race which didn’t help matters. I picked at my breakfast as I drove and once we got there before giving up on it half way through. Once we reached the park where the race started, Alex switched places with me to go park while Amanda and I headed to the port a potties.

After using the bathroom we walked around to warm up my legs a little bit before finding my parents and little brother. . We met up with my Aunt Cathy (who did the half) and Uncle Mike (he did the 5k). After the national anthem my Aunt and I headed to our pacing groups. The weather was a little warmer than I would have liked at the start and the air in the park was thick and heavy

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It took a while before we were moving and the 5K start line was before the Half-Marathon one so everyone started running about a quarter mile early. Once we were off I was feeling good. I knew I would see my family around mile 4 so I just focused on the runners ahead of me to help keep my pace.

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My legs felt really good right off the bat which helped ease some of my nerves. The water/aid stations were well spaced and it seemed that every time I felt thirsty or thought I could use a shot of Gatorade I would see a sign for aid station ahead. My only real complaint with this race is that the drinks are one sided which caused a huge bottle neck at each and every aid station. I tried my best to keep moving but when I wanted to Gatorade I knew I would be walking really slowly before I could grab them. I took a gatorade only at the first three stops then started taking one each of water and Gatorade around mile 6. By mile 10 I was only taking water because the sugar from the gatorade was making my stomach hurt but I am getting a head of myself.

As soon as we turned onto Lake Shore Drive from the park there was a collective sigh. The air cleared, the wind picked up slightly, and we all cooled off significantly. The race from miles 2.5-13 were all along LSD which runs next to the Lake. That lake effect has never felt better. At this point in the race there was great cloud coverage too which helped regulate the temperature. I found my family standing on the median right about 4 miles and gave them a cheesy grin and thumbs up before continuing on. I knew I wouldn’t see them again until the end of my race. Luckily there was awesome crowd support throughout the entire race. Many funny signs to pass the time, people on overpasses yelling down to cheer us all on, and the kids working the aid stations were wonderful! They cheered everyone on as they passed out water and Gatorade trying to say the names of people if they could read the bibs.

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I stayed feeling good until about mile 8-9 when I realized I needed to use the bathroom. I think I had over-hydrated with all of that double drinks at the aid stations! There were lines at all the aid stations so I kept on going until it became too distracting. I found a port a potty spot with no line and was able to get in and out in about 30 seconds which I thought was pretty awesome. I was able to pick my pace up for a little bit until mile 11 hit. Mile 11 was rough to say the least. At this point I could feel my legs getting tired and I struggled to hold my goal pace. I let myself take a longer walking break at the next water station before doing a walk/run combo. I would walk for 1 minute then run the remainder of whatever song was on my Ipod. I found a last wind for the final 3/4 of a mile and was even able to sprint to the finish for the last 0.1 mile.

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The feeling of crossing that finish line was awesome and I felt even better when I realized that I made my goal time! I really enjoyed this race and want to do it again next year. I’m hoping to talk some friends into running it with me!

What was your first half marathon? If you asked me back 5-6 years ago if I would ever run 13.1 miles, I would have laughed in your face and walked away. I cannot see myself running a full marathon but I may just be in love with half marathons now!

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Monday Funday

My birthday has come and gone and I had a blast. I left after work on Friday and headed down to St. Louis to see my friends from my dietetic internship. It was a whirlwind trip! We had an ugly Christmas sweater birthday party for me and my two friends: Alyson and Sarah. Check out Alyson’s blog for awesome recipes.

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I started my Monday off with a 40 minute treadmill run and 7 min walk/cool down followed by my reps for the 2012 Closeout Workout Challenge. Finished another 70 reps and I may do more later tonight. I had taken my weekend off from working out in St. Louis and this run was difficult. My face was bright red and sweaty.

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Afterwards, Adam and I headed up to Chicago for a sibling afternoon with Amanda. We hit up Chriskindlmarket which is a traditional  German holiday market. There were a bunch of booths filled with Christmas ornaments, homemade trinkets and German food. We browsed around for a few hours. Amanda and I bought ornaments for an ornament exchange we are going to on Sunday. The ornaments at these booths are beautiful. I’ll get pictures of them after the exchange has happened. We, also, picked up a new pickle ornament for our pickle present competition on Christmas. It was a cloudy and cold day in Chicago but we saw a couple snowflakes! well worth freezing a bit. It also made getting hot chocolate in a ceramic boot mug totally needed! Tasty chocolate yumminess. 20121210_101058

Somewhere in the above picture is Chicago! I promise.

Adam and I then headed back home. The rest of my day was boring I went to the grocery store, watched some Glee and made a dinner. We had chicken, mashed potatoes and salad. Boring but tasty. I used Simply Potatoes Garlic Mashed Potatoes that we received for free when Mom bought some beef at the store last week. It was the first time I’ve tried them and they were pretty good. I’d buy them again for a lazy night.

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How was your weekend and meals recently?

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