KNR, p. 126 “75 Second Mookies”


I’ll admit it. I’ve got a sweet tooth. That’s not a secret, but the doc says I should drop ten pounds and that means cutting back on calories. No more eating a dozen cookies in one evening, or having two of those amazing chocolaty chocolate muffins for breakfast, or several of the Vegetarian Detective’s super brownies at one sitting. I could have gotten away with extra helpings of everything before I got sidelined from my very active job, but no more.


We plan a pretty balanced menu, with lots of fruits and veggies, but it’s the extra potatoes and slices of pie that do me in. Exercise burns some of it off, but pushing away from the table is the best diet plan out there.


The Doc and Sheila and I came up with a way to help me lose the weight and it’s mostly about reducing the desserts. She promised not to bake batches of three dozen cookies/muffins at a time and I promised not to hound her or sneak out to the bakery. The Doc admitted that I might feel deprived if I gave up dessert completely, so the new plan could include a daily ‘something’ for my sweet tooth – just not five daily ‘somethings.’ He hinted that fruit between meals might change my cravings, but I’m hedging my bets on that.


So, here’s what Sheila came up with: single serving cookies. That way, there won’t be yummy leftovers calling me from the kitchen, tempting me. She tells me the idea has been around for a long time, but she never had a reason to try it before.


I call them mookies, because to me they’re like a cross between a cookie and a muffin. So simple to make, not a lot of cleanup involved and I can make one myself. All you need is a microwave and a few ingredients and in less than ten minutes of prep and cooking time, you’ve got a dessert. 


Chocolate Chip Mookie









Ingredients for Chocolate Chip Mookie

1 Tablespoon butter or margarine

2 Tablespoons brown sugar

1/8 teaspoon Mexican vanilla extract

pinch sea salt

1 egg yolk

4 Tablespoons King Arthur’s cake flour

2 Tablespoons Ghirardelli semi-sweet chocolate chips



Pumpkin Mookie











Ingredients for Pumpkin Mookie

1 ½ Tablespoons butter or margarine

2 Tablespoons light brown sugar

1/8 teaspoon Mexican vanilla extract

pinch sea salt

1 egg yolk

1 ½ Tablespoons organic pumpkin puree

1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg

4 Tablespoons King Arthur’s cake flour

2 Tablespoons Ghirardelli semi-sweet chocolate chips

(Topping is frozen vanilla yogurt and a sprinkle of cinnamon)



Double Chocolate Mookie










Ingredients for Double Chocolate Mookie

1 Tablespoon butter or margarine

2 Tablespoons brown sugar

1/8 teaspoon Mexican vanilla extract

pinch sea salt

1 teaspoon Ghirardelli unsweetened cocoa powder

1 egg yolk

4 Tablespoons King Arthur’s cake flour

2 Tablespoons Ghirardelli semi-sweet chocolate chips



Preparation for all varieties

Use a medium sized glass or ceramic mixing bowl.

Melt the butter for 20 seconds in the microwave. (Doesn’t have to be completely melted)

Add all ingredients for the chosen mookie to the melted butter.

Mix thoroughly using a fork.

Transfer mookie dough to a ramekin or other cup-sized glass or ceramic dish.

Place in microwave and cook for one minute + 15 seconds (75 seconds).

Serve immediately in the ramekin.

The ramekin will be hot, so handle with care.





*Photos by Patti Phillips




KNR, p. 120 “Game Day Flatbread”


NFL season has begun, baseball season is winding down, and hockey season gets under way next month. We need Game Day recipes!


This week we decided to serve a new twist on an old standby.  Game Day Flatbread. What’s flatbread? Basically, it’s a lot like the bread you see under the sauce on a pizza. Some of it tastes and looks like pita bread without the pocket. It’s firm enough to hold meats, doesn’t get soggy while it bakes, and keeps its texture when being eaten. People place a variety of cheeses and veggies on the flatbread and bake it in the oven. Picture heating up an open-face sandwich. Yes, it does look like pizza. Our Game Day Flatbread sandwich has no tomato sauce, and I’ve yet to see one in a pub or restaurant that does. But without the tomato sauce, the flavor mix and cooking time is different.


You can make the actual flatbread yourself, but why bother when you can buy various tasty versions – gluten-free or naan or herb seasoned or unleavened, etc  – right in the bread aisle of almost any grocery store. Tortillas won’t work. Find the kind that you would use to make a gyro. Or look for the brand that we get: Toufayan flatbread.


We plan to let our game day partiers make their own, mixing and matching the toppings they like best, but here is a tasty recipe for spinach & cheese flatbread, with a note for one with sausage. Sheila and I will prep the spinach, tomato, and sausage beforehand, so that all the guests have to do is put together their own creations.


We did a LOT of taste-testing for this one, basically because I could not decide which cheese and tomato combo I liked best. Yup. I’m stickin’ to that story. Sheila would back me up, but she’s busy trying another sausage one.  😉


"Game Day Flatbread"
Recipe type: appetizer or entree
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 1 to 4
  • 1 – 7” round Toufayan flatbread
  • About a teaspoon olive oil
  • 2 cups fresh spinach (1/3 cup cooked)
  • 1/8 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon mayo
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried Italian herb mix (basil, oregano, thyme, rosemary)
  • 4 grape tomatoes, halved or quartered
  • 2 Tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Place flatbread on cookie sheet (or pizza pan)
  3. Spread 1 teaspoon mayo on the flatbread
  4. Sprinkle 1/8 teaspoon dried Italian herb mix on top of mayo.
  5. Stir fry 2 cups fresh spinach in olive oil, sea salt, onion powder, and garlic powder until just wilted, about two minutes. Separate and spread evenly across the mayo-herb layer.
  6. Evenly sprinkle 1 Tablespoon grated Parmesan cheese on top of the spinach.
  7. Evenly spread 1/4 cup of the shredded mozzarella cheese as the next layer.
  8. Evenly spread the tomato pieces next.
  9. Evenly spread the remaining mozzarella cheese.
  10. Evenly spread the remaining Parmesan cheese.
  11. Evenly sprinkle the remaining dried Italian herb mix on top.
  12. Place in oven and bake for 10-12 minutes or until edges are lightly, crispy brown and cheese is melted. Serve right away.
  13. Each flatbread can be cut into quarters for appetizers or served whole for one person.


Sausage variation

If you’d like to add sausage to the mix, use:

1/4 cup ground, chopped, cooked mild Italian sausage. Add it before the tomato layer.

Reduce the amount of Parmesan cheese and also adjust the salt in the spinach, because the added sausage may make this version too salty for some.


For other Game Day recipes, click on the links below:






Hearty Soup


*Photo by Patti Phillips





KNR, p. 25 “Is the Superbowl chili ready yet?”


My sister sent this recipe from Texas and she says it is hot enough to blow the doors off the horse barn. Definitely hot enough to make my eyes water and my nose run, but just the right combination of heat and flavors for the Superbowl crowd. She got second place in a chili cook-off with one can of beans, but we added the second because of the east coast taste buds.


She buys the dried habanero spices in Texas, where five-alarm chili is the norm, so be very careful with this one. Because of the dried spices, it gets hotter the second day and you’ll need the fire department on the third. It smells great when it’s simmering, so we cook it the night before or the day of the big game. Make ahead at your own risk.


Kerrian's Easy Superbowl Chili
Recipe type: Entree
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8-10
  • 3 pounds ground sirloin
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • 4 heaping teaspoons minced garlic
  • 2- 15 oz cans stewed or diced tomatoes with onions, celery and green peppers
  • 2 cans pureed Goya black beans
  • ½ cup sausage, chopped and thoroughly browned
  • 3 more teaspoons sea salt
  • 4 teaspoons chili powder (hot Mexican style)
  • 4 teaspoons onion powder
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • ½ teaspoon dried habanero seasoning (optional)
  1. Get out your chili/spaghetti pot. Sprinkle ½ teaspoon sea salt evenly in bottom of pot. Turn on medium heat. Add ground sirloin a little at a time and brown evenly, stirring to break up clumps. Drain off the fat.
  2. Add the garlic and tomatoes and stir. Puree the black beans, add to the pot and stir.
  3. Cook sausage in a separate pan, drain and add to the chili pot and let simmer for 15 minutes on low. Stir.
  4. Add the rest of the salt, the chili powder, the onion powder and the brown sugar, stir and let simmer for about an hour. Add the habanero seasoning and stir. Let simmer for another 30 minutes.
  5. Serve with your favorite toppings.
  6. Make sure sour cream is available to cut the heat and enjoy!


This chili is such a favorite that it’s consistently on our comfort food menu during the winter and on any gray, chilly days. Enjoy!



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