• JetLime

    Bloody hilarious! Good job though, very pretty biscuits! I might try baking myself. I looked at a muffin baking thingybob today but then I lost courage. See, my problem is that my mum is such a great cook, especially when it comes to cakes that I never had to learn. And in the past many years living alone I made the effort to learn to cook but baking is luxury. You need to have kids for it. And since having kids is a bit of a luxury as well I might just stick to oreos….

  • anwoodward

    I’m with Leta here, who eats gingerbread men for the gingerbread? It’s all about the sprinkles and the frosting. Also, you’ll see a great many online cooks use a wine bottle in a pinch when their roller is AWOL.

    This was a lovely thing to do with her and I’m sure she’ll remember it. (ps, I was the same way about cooking, then I had my second kid and my brain was all, GET THEE TO THE KITCHEN, WOMAN, AND LEARN. Maybe if you get another dog….?)

  • William

    Yes, Sprinkles. We use sprinkles for pancakes, oatmeal and other breakfasty things just to get the kids to eat breakfast.

  • Marie_Lynn

    I buy all my spices at the dollar store because i refuse to spend that much on something i may use once a year lol. :) 730

  • Persephonic

    I rarely bake, but I spent like 3-4 hours making a batch of 50 from-scratch oatmeal cookies for my new boyfriend about two months ago (I had definitely never made cookies from scratch). We were going to eat them while tailgating wit 20 friends at a UNC football game. I used something like “stone ground” instead of flakey oats, but needless to say that although the cookies were tasty, they were very FIBEROUS and could definitely act as a digestive brillo pad. Anyways, because it took FOREVER to “lovingly” craft these cookies from scratch, I got to his place late and we missed tailgating and had to go straight to the game. We ate a few each, then left the rest covered in cloth in the basket I’d brought them in on the counter in the kitchen.
    That evening, as we got home we got a text from his roomate; “What was in the baket?” We enter the kitchen to find that my boyfriend’s annoying roomate’s dog had eaten about 45 heavy-as-hell stone ground homemade oatmeal cookies, the empty basket still lying on it’s side on the floor.
    My bf mainly laughed and felt bad that the dog had eaten them because the dog isn’t allowed to eat people food… I could tell that he DEFINITELY DIDN’T APPRECIATED the time and effort that went into those damn cookies. Apparently his roomate had to CARRY his dog outside the next day to poop oatmeal rocks becaues she was so sick she couldn’t walk. I felt bad for her… but boys are so stupid.
    Oh, I also just found the from-scratch key-lime pie I made for him 2 months ago in the freezer yesterday… looking like a science experiment. Come to think of it I am never baking for that guy again.

  • caramama

    Awesome. Looks like, ahem, fun.

    I personally LOVE to bake, but it’s not always so easy with a 2 year old. This weekend I just wanted cookies, so I bought the ready-made dough in a tube, sliced it up and let my 2 year old sprinkle the shit out of them with red and green! Voila: Christmas cookies made by the 2 year old.

  • mrsbrady

    There’s not a single thing wrong with using a whisk or a fork to sift dry ingredients. I do it every time, and I bake probably 3 or 4 times a week, more if I’m in the mood to make my own bread.

    Baking with kids can be such a….challenge. Good for you for keeping your patience!

  • mandi

    Both of your children have such incredibly expressive faces … they are just TOO cute.

  • Cojo

    Leta is a beautiful girl but there’s something about Marlo that makes me melt when I see her picture. Seeing her makes me sad that my baby days are over.

  • aslapintheface

    … and a good time was had by all … whether they knew it or not … Leta will remember that you baked cookies with her and in the long run it doesn’t matter how many sprinkles you used or the fact that you didn’t let the dough sit overnight … it wouldnt have even mattered if the cookies tasted like the bottom of a coal miner’s boot … what matters is that you took the time to make cookies with your daughter … and she will remember it … and someday she will do the same for her daughter

  • KatherinetheGreat

    So I @’d you on Twitter that sifting is overrated, and I’ve never blown up my kitchen, and then I thought, I don’t know what she’s making, what if I’m wrong? And then you posted a photo on Flickr and I felt better. But in that meantime I was poised to make a batch of cookies and send them in the mail with a big I’M SORRY letter. (I still am.) Anyway, I’m glad it worked out! (Last night I switched the baking powder and soda but the cookies still highly edible. Maybe I should stop baking my the seat of pants. Or alternatively, eat more cookies…)

  • roxyjane

    Hahaha…just a word of advice, if you should ever cook again, if possible go to the farmer’s market for spices. At least in Atlanta, at Dekalb Farmer’s market you can get twice as much spices for literally like a dollar or even less sometimes.

    Thanks for always being entertaining!

  • agablack

    So KEWL! I was a total Heather until about 2 years ago. I thought pastries, ravioli, spinakopitas, etc were made in science labs by nuclear scientists precisely. Then I met Jason, my other half, and I was like YEAH, I WANNA COOK FOR YOU! HOW ABOUT A SALAD? And it went from there. Now I started my own business as a Personal Chef, plus I have a food blog. Go figure. :-)

  • XOXO

    Good Lord, woman!
    I hate gingerbread cookies.
    I mean, I LOVE them, but making them is… less than pleasant.

    Here’s to you being a better mother than I.

    My child gets the Nestle pre-cut crap from the refrigerated section.


  • thatswhatisaid

    Apparently you can get stoned on nutmeg!! My friend’s son was doing nutmeg (a tablespoon at a time is like smoking a joint… so I’ve heard), and so she had to lock her spice cabinet!!

    Congrats on the baking! I have no patience for baking, and that’s why God gave me the grocery store.


  • kcbelles

    What a fun post! You are hilarious, which is why I keep coming back. I personally just got into baking the past year, but I find I have a knack for it and it’s been a lot of fun. My mother didn’t bake; therefore, I didn’t bake (until I was 49; never too late, eh?) You’re making some wonderful memories for Leta, even if all she’ll remember is the sprinkling part :o )

  • i8cupcakes

    You don’t need to own a sifter. A whisk will always work just fine.

  • My Baby Sweetness

    Definitely go for the pre-made cookie dough! She hadn’t told Jon she was going to make cookies “from scratch” with you, had she?

    Sounds like you actually produced usable cookies, which is better than my friend did last year. They bought a box of cookie dough rather than ‘break and bake’ (for when even spooning the dough out is too much) and managed to mangle the recipe enough that they threw the cookies out by attempting to melt the butter AFTER they mixed it in…

  • laurencrider

    I myself am a baker…but am also a blonde, which creates problems. I’ve been known to add 4 cups of flour instead of 3, because I loose count when Oprah comes back on. I can relate.

    But, I’ve learned that a bottle of Chardonnay wrapped in saran wrap or a 40 oz. of Mad Dog 20/20 (I’ve heard) also work exceeding well as stand-ins for a rolling pin. For future reference, of course. Because Marlo will want to do the same thing in about 4.5 years, and you’ll need to work with what you have on hand.

  • Failjolesfail

    The good news is that those are approximately the right substitutions when you don’t have the right equipment. I, for example, don’t have a sifter or cookie cutters because my kitchen is smaller than the bathroom on the space shuttle. And I only got a rolling pin last year…it lives tucked inside my bundt pan.

    Might want to try sugar cookies next time…fewer ingredients, harder to screw up, more taste friendly to kids, and you get to the sprinkles faster!

  • simpliSAHM

    Yeah, I’m not Betty Crocker either, but I will say I’m getting slightly better! I had a fun little kitchen experiment otherwise known as: Adventures in Natural Cupcakes that tells a similar story.

  • kristanhoffman

    Oh Heather…

    I was SO with you. SO SO SO with you. I thought, OMG YAY Heather is like me! I can’t cook to save my life — no, literally — so my boyfriend does it instead. We are kindred spirits, yaaaaaaaay!

    But then you said: “I almost got baking soda mixed up with baking powder.”

    And I started to cry.

    Because once upon a time, I DID NOT KNOW BAKING SODA AND BAKING POWDER WERE DIFFERENT. Who the heck would name two such similar seeming substances, such similar sounding things? WHO!? Someone who wants me to make the shittiest cookies ever, that’s who. Because that’s exactly what happened. My cookies sucked. And my friends still make fun of me for it to this day.


  • Ralemap

    This is freaking awesome! Heather, you rock the (gingerbread) house!!

  • Nhiro

    I’ll cook you anything you want if you let me play around with your Kitchenaid stand mixer. Seriously, I’ve wanted one for forever.

  • hungrybruno

    The end of that story is completely hilarious, about Leta not eating any of the cookies. If you want, you can send them to me. But really, I wouldn’t want to eat gingerbread cookies either, not when there are so many other delicious cookies to be made and eaten. Gingerbread is a lower tier cookie, in my book… but I’m one of those crazies who loves to bake.

  • Mays45

    This recipe is very easy, very tasty, and kind of healthy, at least compared to most holiday treats. I made it with raw almonds, pecans, and walnuts and just added a bit of salt after baking. To make it even easier, pop regular popcorn in a paper grocery bag, closed by folding the top a few times. We used 2 cups of unpopped popcorn with a little oil. After 2 minutes in the micro, take out the popped popcorn, and then close the bag again and cook the remaining kernels for 2 minutes. This prevents burning it (Heather!).

  • abbyjaye

    Uh oh. Somebody better tell The Pioneer Woman to watch her back.

  • christa bader

    BWHAHAHAHAHAHAHHA! “Cinnamon drug lord” Funniest thing today! And very, very true.

  • maybewithme

    I love that you hate cooking but have the nicest cooking accessories! I’m jealous.

  • JBird

    BEST cookie making story. EVER.

    My homemade shortbread cut-out cookies I make with my kids have FOUR ingredients, and they are to die for. (butter, sugar, eggs, flour).

  • Sursi


    It’s not even a recipe. But it’s awesome. Get a whole package of those Oreos. Buy two so you can eat the second. Put a whole package of them in a food processor. And add……A PACKAGE A CREAM CHEESE!! Now grind it all up until there’s no more grinding to be done. Make little balls of the stuff and put it on some waxed paper. Stick it in the refrigerator. Then get some chocolate/candy coating (from your baking aisle), and get ready to dip those balls in chocolate. Let them set up, then give them away and call them Cookies and Cream Truffles.

  • LolaLola

    I haven’t laughed out loud for so long.
    To quote Homer Simpson (not something I have ever done before or plan to again) “It’s funny cuz it’s true.”

  • mandinka

    wait a damn minute…
    There’s pepper in cookies?
    I really prefer not to know these things.

  • proud momma of one

    LOVE LOVE LOVE times infinity!

    I can’t wait until my little one is old enough to bake, shop, and covet expensive shoes with me!!!!

    Awesome entry! xoxo

  • proud momma of one

    BTW that picture in the suave advertisement, is that when you got MOLASSES stuck in your hair?! awesome…

  • Anu

    Marlo sure looks happy after she may or may not have eaten the cookies. So that alone totally makes it worth it….right?

  • Svaha

    Should this ever happen again you can use one of those wire strainers to sift with. If you have one of those, most people seem to have large plastic colanders now.

    And sugar cookies are way easier and you can obviously sprinkle the ever loving shit out of them as well.

  • ATXGirl

    OMG That reminds me of when my mother decided to make velvetta fudge. Sounds gross, but the velvetta was more for texture than taste. It was definitely very chocolatey!

    So, I’m about 9 years old. She was letting me be the navigator. But you would think she would have read the recipe first herself. She did not.

    1 c.. this… 2 c… that…. and so on… we had to go to the store THREE times to get more stuff! You would have thought she would question why this fudge needed 4 c of sugar and 5 c of flour, but no…

    After our last trip, I’m still reading… mix together… ladeda… and I decide (probably because I was bored with making fudge that was taking 5 hours) I skipped to the bottom.


    My mother looked at me completely shocked. “What did you say??” Like I had just cussed her out or something.

    She spent the next 3 weeks trying to give the fudge away, but since it was called Velvetta fudge, she didn’t have many takers (UHM, STOP CALLING IT THAT MOM!)

    I still like fudge, but I refuse to eat velvetta fudge ever again….


  • Dharma

    Marlo is clearly high on nutmeg. Bad Mommy. lol

  • Ashley_the Accidental Olympian

    I don’t know what it is about that baby, but I always feel compelled to go on a little road trip after seeing a new picture of her, and then STEAL HER FROM YOU.

    What an adorable little baby bird you have on your hands…

  • Mama Ark

    Think about it, now you have a lot of the basic ingredients to bake so many more sprinkle carrying vessels.
    Seriously, I’m hear if you ever need baking help. I’m not a master, but I’m a damn good home cook and food writer (backseatgourmet.blogspot.com). And yes, I put my 18 month old on a stool and let her/make her knead bread.

  • Kim

    Cripes, Dooce, I am an enthusiastic cook, and even I was like: “That’s a heck of a lot of work for a few cookies!” Still, it looks like Leta had fun and your story and pictures may start a new Christmas tradition.

  • MadameQueen

    What is it with little girls and gingerbread cookies? My 4-year-old has been talking non-stop about making gingerbread cookies. I DO bake (occasionally anyway) so I thought, what the heck, let’s do it. Dude. Gingerbread cookies are hardcore. Did yours call for parchment paper? ‘Cause mine did (which I also did not know about until I got to the bottom of the recipe).

    We did chill ours for a couple of hours, but once we rolled it out, it was too gooey. The effing effers would not stay gingerbread man shaped and we couldn’t get them off the wax paper. So, we scraped up all the dough and put it back in the fridge and tonight we shall try again. With parchment paper.

  • Squeetthang

    Those momtributes are totally passed on to generation to generation. My mom hated cooking/baking/kitchens and I feel the same! Except to eat of course. I am all about eating. That is why you marry/date/stay in contact with a cooking person. That is how I roll in my house. I have two on standby! Thank you girlfriend and roommate!

  • TexasKatie

    Very “Pioneer Woman” – but better! And now I have a craving for gingerbread cookies, damn it.

  • Hagan Squared

    Is it true about the nutmeg? Cuz that’s, um, awesome. This post made me laugh so hard, especially the “saddest little helper” photo. You can just see the thought bubble… “Sigh… When are we going to get the the sprinkles?!” Oh and I totally agree about the spice prices. Seriously? This is oregano people, not pot.

  • undernova


  • ModaMags

    LOVED THAT!!! Gingerbread is the essence of Christmas. Family members making it weird; the subtle undertone. Happy Holidays everyone!


  • gewd

    I enjoyed your version of the cooking/food/photos post. I read some foodblogs and I kind of get tired of seeing the recipes and how-tos being posted like “BUY 9,000 EXPENSIVE INGREDIENTS AND DO ALL THIS COMPLICATED SHIT” even though they’re like “YOU CAN DO IT! :D ” the whole time. No, no, today I can’t. I’m making boxed mac & cheese, thanks.

  • JanetP

    It took me awhile to figure out that my niece wanted to make cookies just so she could eat the dough. Luckily for me, everyone else loved the baked cookies so they didn’t stay in the cookie jar for very long. If Leta acquires a love of raw cookie dough, just get her a roll from the dairy case – lots cheaper than buying all that stuff! And you can always roll it out and put sprinkles on it!