Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Thanksgiving 2009 Revisited

I finally got around to uploading some of the pictures from Thanksgiving. I figured I better do this before Christmas arrived. I had a great time with great friends and a lot of delicious food! I'm very grateful to have such wonderful people in my life. Nothing is better than sharing a great meal with close friends. I hope you all had a great Thanksgiving!

RECIPE: Hershey Kiss Cookies

One of my favorite holiday cookies are Hershey Kiss Cookies. I always seem to see these around the holidays, so I decided to try and make a couple dozen myself.

First the ingredients:
1/2 cup butter

1/2 cup sugar

1/2 cup brown sugar

1/2 cup peanut butter

1 egg

1 tsp. vanilla

1 3/4 cup flour

1 tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. salt

Hershey Kisses, 1 for each cookie

Pre-Heat oven to 375 degrees F.

Cream together butter, both sugars and peanut butter. Add 1 egg and vanilla. Add flour, baking soda and salt.

Form dough in walnut-size balls. Roll them in white sugar and place them on a cookie sheet.

Bake for 8 to 10 minutes. Press Hershey Kisses into each cookie when fresh out of the oven.

Place the cookies back in the oven for 1 to 2 minutes to soften the Hershey Kisses to give them a nice smooth glaze. Allow to cool for 5 minutes.

Makes about 2 1/2 dozen cookies.

Roy Street Coffee & Tea

I paid a visit to the new Roy Street Coffee and Tea (Starbucks). This is the second of two new neighborhood coffee shops owned by Starbucks. The first is located on 15th Avenue on Capitol Hill. Starbucks is trying to go back to its roots of being the local neighborhood coffee shop. I haven't visited the 15th Avenue location yet, but I was very impressed with the Roy Street location. First off, you wouldn't know the place is owned by Starbucks except for the "inspired by Starbucks" on the front door and on their white, non-Starbucks looking cups.

The coffee house doesn't look anything like any of the typical corporate-looking Starbucks coffee houses. The Roy Street coffee house is very inviting. The decor is very Northwest with large, over-sized wood furniture. All the light fixtures are very old-school. They are large clear glass vessels with exposed light bulbs. The coffee house itself is rather large. There is a lot of space. To help soften up all the wood furniture, red drapes are hung all throughout and add some good color to the place.

As for the coffee, I was impressed. I have heard a lot of bad reviews about the coffee at the 15th Avenue location, so I was pretty skeptical. The one nice thing about these two coffee houses is that the Baristas actually pull their own shots, rather than having the ultra high-tech coffee machines dispense the shot like they do at all the regular Starbucks. I personally like Starbucks coffee and I've had my fair share of lattes. I definitely like the taste of the lattes from the Roy Street Coffee and Tea. They taste more like the lattes you would get from one of the independent coffee houses, although I think the independent coffee houses still taste better.

So if you're one of the many Starbucks haters out there, give Roy Street Coffee & Tea a try.

Roy Street Coffee & Tea on Urbanspoon