QUARANTINE DIARIES, COMFORT FOOD & ALL THE SMALL THINGS THAT KEEP US GOING
Chryssa and I met at Meteora, for an amazing truffle hunt a long long time ago. It almost seems like an eternity and a day. We still keep in touch within busy schedules and I am so happy she is sharing her chocolate chunk cookie recipe here on the blog. She is an amazing baker!
Head straight to the recipe.
A few words about you and where did the quarantine find you?
I’m Chryssa, a full-time working mom. Born and raised in Thessaloniki, I still live in the eastern part of the city with my husband, Kostas and our two kids, George (7) and Anestis (2), in the beautiful and historic neighborhood of “Depot”. I work as an administrative employ at the Research Department of the University of Macedonia, and in my spare time (as much as that is), I am a food blogger, I cook, photoshoot and write about my favorite recipes on myblissfood.gr.
What did it change for you ?
Every aspect of my everyday life has changed. I had to manage working from home while taking care of the kids, and doing all the housework, plus helping George who had to adapt in his new way of “going” to school, most of which I had to do alone, because my husband still had to go to work every day. I had to face the fact that I couldn’t get in touch with my parents, my family and friends, even though they live five minutes away from us, and explain to my children why they could only see their grandparents and their friends through videocalls (thank God for all those apps…). The most difficult part though, was trying to keep everything as normal as possible for the children, so that, all this would have the minimum effect possible on them, while in the meantime I was feeling the anxiety and stress that all of us were feeling…
How many loo-rolls can you count in your cupboards?
Well, this is quite a tricky one for me, because I always feel that a house should have more than enough, just in case… I feel the same way about other things as well, for example, lemons and parchment paper. Anyway, right now there are about 12 rolls in the house, which is a very satisfying number for me. The good thing is that during this whole time there was never a toilet paper shortage in the super markets, so that was one less thing to worry about…
Comfort food: Chocolate Chunk Cookies
Well, when you have children around the house, you know that the ultimate comfort food there is, is cookies. We are talking all kinds of cookies, but when you really want to spoil them (and what better time to do so), is chocolate chip cookies. And because, as they say, desperate times call for desperate measures, this time I switched the chips to great big chocolate chunks, so, there you have it:
Chocolate Chunk Cookies
- 400 grams all-purpose flour
- ½ tsp baking soda
- ½ tsp salt
- 180 grams butter very soft, almost melted
- 110 grams white sugar
- 80 grams light brown sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 egg yolk
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 200 grams dark chocolate chopped in big chunks
- Start by mixing together the flour with baking soda and salt.
- In the bowl of a standing mixer (or a big bowl, if you use a hand mixer), beat together the butter and two kinds of sugar, until combined and fluffy.
- And the egg and egg yolk, together with the vanilla, and beat until combined.
- With the mixer on low speed, add the flour mix little by little.
- Beat in the chocolate chunks and beat just until they are combined.
- Line two baking sheets with parchment paper, and, using an ice cream scoop, or just your hands, drop golf ball - sized balls of cookie dough on the baking sheet, about 3-4 centimeters apart from each other. Sprinkle with some coarse salt.
- Bake in a pre-heated oven at 175 C for about 12-15 minutes.
How do you cope?
I try to think of all the positives. I finally have time to be with my children, which I always miss a lot in our “normal” everyday life. Maybe sometimes it feels that it’s too much time together, but still, I had the chance to witness my little one, Anestis, saying his first words, and reaching many milestones as a toddler, things I missed with George. For once I could easily say “yes” to George asking to play with his mom, and not for just 10 minutes a day…
Another thing that helped me a lot, was the fact that I have more time to focus on my blog, try out tons of new recipes, practice a lot with my camera and play around with the light and my food styling, and again, get the kids more involved in the kitchen, which, although messy and sometimes exhausting, is always a great way to spend time together.
Where will you go eat once this madness is over?
All this time I’ve been dreaming of sitting on a small taverna by the sea, drinking some cold ouzo, and eating all kinds of seafood mezedes, together with my loved ones…. I don’t care which taverna it is (although I have one or two in Chalkidiki in mind), as long as my feet get wet by the sea…
Share a wish, just so we can finish on a happy note.
I really hope that all this madness will end as soon as possible, and that soon there will be a proper cure or a vaccine so that there are no more victims of this terrible disease, and all of us can go on with our lives, washing our hands thoroughly, not touching our face and taking care of each other…
from Thessaloniki with love,
PS: If you wish to be part of my quarantine cuisine diaries and share your experience on Eat Yourself Greek (EYG), please drop me a line here. Thanks, Eugeniaby