Sunday, March 16, 2014

Some DIYs: Irish Cream Cookies and Shamrock Bokeh

I wanted to take it easy with the green dye this year and make something that still encapsulated the spirit of St Patrick's day....which I realize has been bastardized across the US to mean just 'celebrate everything Irish day' but hey, we need SOMEthing to look forward to this bloodyawful time of year, so anything remotely festive goes in my book, and I do have some slight drops of Irish blood to celebrate from some great great great someone or other.

So, into these cookies I poured bourbon, pero, cocoa powder, and bailey's Irish cream I don't usually post recipes of things I make here on the blog, because I am almost always experimenting and rarely follow instructions. I don't know if it's the right-brainnness or the INFPness or what, but I've never been good with recipes. I get bored with them and following the steps makes me feel like I'm not actually doing anything- almost like I can't take any credit for anything regarding the final product because the steps weren't really my steps. Anyway, I know it's silly, and not every experiment can turn out great if it's all just guesswork, and at least for me, chocolate chip cookies are always finicky and turn out different every time, so I decided to look up a basic recipe using coconut oil instead of butter.

11/2 cup all purpose flour ( I used trader joe's gluten free flour because I have what they call an 'intolerance')
1/2 tsp baking powder (after tasting the final product, I'd make it just 1/4)
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt ( I always add more salt...I love salty desserts)
1/2 cup coconut oil
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar (I did half that)
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
23/4 cup semi sweet chocolate chips

my additions:
3 tbsp pero or postum or instant coffee
1tbsp baking cocoa
1 tbsp bourbon or whiskey
2 tbsp bailey's irish cream coffee creamer

In medium bowl mix baking powder, soda, flour, salt, and baking cocoa. set aside.

In another bowl with mixer, cream coconut oil and sugars until light and fluffy. Add egg, bourbon, and vanilla. Beat well. Add pero. Beat well. Gradually add in dry ingredients until just incorporated. Add chocolate chips. Do not over mix. Cover and Chill in fridge for 2-6 hours.

Preheat oven to 350F, scoop dough with spoon in uniform balls and space 2 inches apart on cookie sheet. Bake about 8 minutes, cool on sheet 2 minutes, transfer to rack.......enjoy with a tall glass of almond milk.

Also, I've been asked about bokeh shapes before- it's really simple- to achieve shapes like these shamrocks, cut a circle of black paper the size of your lens, and cut out your desire shape right out of the middle, no bigger than 1/2 inch in diameter (an exact knife is best for precision). Tape the paper to the front of your lens, blocking all light entering except for your shape. Then either find a place with lots of light, or set something up so you will have multiple point of light (christmas lights are great for this) and set your camera to manual.
Select the widest aperture your lens can open to ( small number )and compensate exposure with your shutter speed and ISO. Then you can either have something in the foreground in focus, or just take out of focus shots of the lights themselves. It helps to use live view during this process to really see clearly the difference as you move around and play with your focus.


  1. I'll bookmark this for later use, this looks delicious!

  2. I'd love to try making bokeh shapes in the future - it's such a cute effect! Good idea doing shamrocks for today, too! Happy St. Paddy's Day! :D

    Technicolour Dreamer