Hi everyone! Who is having an amazing, COVID-19-free day? I for one am here living my best life with my 5 kiddos and 3 pooches who haven’t left my side since Walmart ran out of toilet paper. It’s a blessing to have everyone home and be able to spend some true quality time with them instead of being so distracted by things like a job, hobbies, running errands, girls night out, or date night, or – oops! I digress. As Jennifer Lopez so insightfully said in a recent interview about her perspective on the Coronavirus, “To me, there’s no greater luxury than getting to spend real time with my kids.” She’s so in touch with the lives of people like me – she just gets it.
So with that in mind, I thought I would share my recipe for Corona Crack Cookies which you can make with the entire family! Now that the kids have been home for a few months and… oh, check that. My daughter just reminded me it’s only been a week. Ok! So since they’ve been home for a week and because they may not be going back to school for the foreseeable future, wholesome family baking activities are the perfect thing to nurture their beautiful little brains. Oh my goodness, I just love these kids.
This recipe goes way back to the SARS pandemic of 2003 when my Memaw hunkered down with me and my 7 brothers and sisters in her 500 square foot apartment in my mom’s basement. After a couple weeks Memaw was understandably at her wits end with us kids and our shenanigans so she decided to have us make cookies and in her words, “Make you heathens useful for once.” Ha! My Memaw had such a colorful vocabulary, bless her dear departed soul!
So this recipe is my Memaws, but I wanted to give the name a contemporary spin so I put “crack” in the name. Because when you do that people are sure to love it. And with the secret ingredient in these cookies inspired by the Coronavirus (more on that later), it’s the perfect time to cook up a batch.
I remember when I was a little girl living with my foster family after Child Protective Services took me from my mother’s loving arms at the sweet age of 7. I was a creative and spirited little thing with a horde of imaginary friends. My older brothers and sisters loved to play with me and always came up with creative games for us to participate in. I remember one game they called Pop the Pig. It was so fun! I would race around the house on all fours while my brothers and sisters would try to shoot me with their nerf guns. Not only am I fast and agile because of that game, but I can also make the most authentic little piggy noises!
Oh, wow. That was just totally out of the blue and had nothing to do with cookies or baking. Oops! But that’s what food blogs are all about. Relating cooking to your own life experiences even when they has nothing to do with the actual recipe or really, anything at all. Ha! So back to the recipe.
Before you start cooking, make sure you prep your work area. Get all your ingredients out, pre-heat the oven, and tell the kids not to wash their hands. That’s right, this recipe doesn’t require hygiene or germ-free environments. These are Coronavirus Crack Cookies! The secret ingredient is the virus! Genius, right?
The kids had a great time baking these cookies which is perfect because they also learned at the same time! They did math by measuring the ingredients, science by mixing the right (or wrong) ingredients, and they learned patience with their siblings when someone thought it was cute to shove butter into another sibling’s nose to stop them from sneezing all over everything.
We also had the opportunity to get creative with the ingredients we used. The kids and I came up with some super fun alternatives since our pantry shelves are currently bare. (Someone was a leeeeetle caught off guard when everyone else got the hoarding memo.) See the ingredients list below for some of my alternative recommendations – all of which work for those with allergies or aversions to meat products!
Once the kids were done making the cookies and everything was in the oven, it was time to clean up! A great opportunity to teach kids responsibility and cleanliness. And boy did they get to learn a thing or two about that! While the kids tidied up their little mess in the kitchen, I took the opportunity to grab a Prozac and rock back and forth in the closet to calm my nerves.
Once the kitchen didn’t look like a frat house after an End of Days party, we put the cookies in the oven for 20 minutes. Although, it could have been an hour and 20 minutes… that Prozac really does a number on my sense of time. Ha!
And voila! The finished product! They did a great job, didn’t they? This batch turned out a little tough and crispy, but I think if you cook them for the recommended time and use the correct ingredients, you should be have a great cookie! Enjoy!
- 3 cups flour (If you can’t find flour at the grocery store, substitute with white mica powder which can be found in many slime accessory kits. The flavor won’t be quite the same, but I think you’ll like the iridescent sheen you get when the cookies are baked.)
- 1 cup butter (This can be substituted with hand sanitizer which I know everyone has even though it’s not available anywhere. Hand sanitizer is one of those things you never buy but it just appears in your home in weird places. So don’t pretend that you didn’t have about 8 half used bottles in the house before the poop hit the fan.)
- 1 cup sugar (Finally make use of all those packets of Stevia or Sweet and Low you keep on hand for when the grandparents visit! It takes a lot of packets, but the kids loved tearing them all open and made a game out of scattering the tiny pieces of paper around the house afterward. It’s great when something can be used in more than one way, right?)
- 1 cup brown sugar (Ok, I’m going to be completely honest here because I know times are bad. Not everyone will be able to do this because not everyone has a 17-year-old juvenile delinquent living in their home, but fortunately for once – I do! My oldest happens to have a nasty little heroin habit and I happen to know where his stash is. Since we were low on brown sugar, I used a couple teaspoons of heroin and it worked perfectly! Plus, the kids were so much easier to deal with after they ate the cookies too. I call that a win-win!)
- 2 eggs (The grocery stores are out, but many people keep egg-laying hens on their property. There happens to be a house down the road from me with some very productive egg layers, so I just popped in around midnight when nobody was looking and grabbed a couple eggs. I would have asked them in person, but we had an issue last winter when my youngest – he’s a spicy one, bless his heart – had a little altercation with the neighbor’s goats. He kind of shaved them all because he thought they were sheep that needed shearing. He was really just trying to be helpful!)
- 2 tsp vanilla extract (Instead of vanilla, you can also use that bottle of syrup that’s been hanging out in your pantry for decades. You know – that off-brand syrup you bought when you were staying at a VRBO and didn’t want to shell out the big bucks for a real bottle of syrup when you already had a gallon of the good stuff at home and should have brought it but didn’t think your kids would insist on making pancakes?)
- ½ tsp salt (Substitute your tears of frustration and anger from being locked up in a small space with 5 kids and 3 dogs who don’t understand the meaning of personal space or how to use the bathroom properly.)
- 2 cups semisweet chocolate chips (Are you stupid? There is absolutely no substitute for chocolate. You might as well just crush your hopes and dreams of getting out of this horrible pandemic with your sanity intact and sprinkle that into your darn cookie dough!)
Blend your dry ingredients together first. If using heroin as a brown sugar substitute, be sure not to add any warm ingredients (like melted butter) to the mix. This will improperly dissolve your heroin before it’s cooked. Once your dry ingredients are combined, add wet ingredients and mix. Add your chocolate chips and then form dough into balls (or if your kids are shape-challenged like mine, form dough into “fist” shapes.) Place dough balls on a baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes at 350 degrees. Let cool for 5 minutes and eat! Or feed them to the dogs. Whichever seems the safest.