Sending Cookies, With Love

This year, I think it’s more important than ever that we send food, with love. Learn more at TwiceasTasty.com.
There’s no point in sugarcoating it: The winter holidays will look different for almost all of us this year. For most of us, holiday parties, cookie and gift exchanges, and family gatherings will be smaller, virtual, or nonexistent. But there are still plenty of ways to share the holiday cheer—particularly with food.

Despite concerns early in the COVID-19 pandemic about food and packaging contact that had us wiping down milk jugs with bleach and putting store-bought goods in short-term quarantine, we now know that food and its packaging are among the least of our virus-spread concerns. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says, “Currently, no cases of COVID-19 have been identified where infection was thought to have occurred by touching food, food packaging, or shopping bags.” We also know that food, particularly homemade food, can provide comfort, remembrance, joy, and more. So this year, I think it’s more important than ever that we send food, with love.

Since I’ve been on a pickling rampage most of the year, much to my cookie-loving sister’s disappointment, it’s time to bring some sweets to the Twice as Tasty table. Here are some foods I’ll be shipping to family and friends this holiday season.
Read more about sending holiday treats

Adapting Desserts

Make easy desserts and three-ingredient cookies from your freezer and pantry. Get dessert recipes at TwiceasTasty.com.
I went so big on adaptable dinner ideas last week that I decided to step back and focus on just a few favorites when it comes to desserts. At least that’s my excuse—I actually find it easy to skip dessert, far easier than running out of cheese. When I do crave dessert, I’m often just as happy with a couple of squares of dark chocolate alongside a nightcap. But the rest of my family would disagree that dessert is expendable. My dad just bragged about how since he’s buying groceries less often, he’s cut back to two desserts a day.

So for those with a sweet tooth, I highlight some recipes that can likely be made without a trip to the store. As a bonus, some take minimal prep time, and some don’t require dessert staples, like flour, that may be in short supply. I also give you the simplest cookie recipe you’ll ever find—shortbread—and plenty of ideas for gussying it up.
Learn to adapt desserts and make Improv Shortbread Cookies

Adapting Dinners

What happens when you combine an unfamiliar ingredient, Web access, and creativity? Gluten-Free Cauliflower-Crust Pizza and other adapted dinners. Learn more at TwiceasTasty.com.
I have a confession: I often cook without recipes. Even when I use them, I alter this and change that to fit what’s in my cupboard and what I think I want to eat. And I rarely make a dish the same way twice. I mainly develop and write out recipes so that I can share my favorite foods more easily with you!

So almost every recipe on Twice as Tasty can be adapted and even free-formed. There are some exceptions: You’ll have greater success with sourdough baking and cheesemaking if you follow the recipe as closely as possible, particularly as you’re learning. For canning and fermenting for long-term storage, using the given ingredients and instructions ensures food safety. But when it comes to adapting dinners and other meals, you can typically use your judgment and experience in deciding how closely you’ll follow a recipe—like I did for my latest adaptation, Gluten-Free Cauliflower-Crust Pizza.
Learn to adapt dinners and make Gluten-Free Cauliflower-Crust Pizza

Adapting Breakfasts

Working from home, my first meal of the day is healthy, varied, and enjoyable. Get breakfast recipes at TwiceasTasty.com.
If you’ve been staying home these last few weeks, one of the biggest changes to the way you eat may be at breakfast. If you have a job outside the home, or kids to get to school, or a daily routine that start with a gym or other leave-the-house activity, you likely rush out the door with little thought for breakfast—or perhaps no food in your belly. Cooked breakfasts, and particularly family breakfasts, might be reserved for weekends or even holidays. If you want to turn staying at home to your advantage, using it to break old habits and improve routines, I can’t think of a better place to start than the first meal of the day.

That doesn’t mean you need to wake up in the morning ready to spend hours slaving in the kitchen while your family eyes you hungrily. If “slaving” is the word that comes to mind over preparing any meal, then something is out of sync. And just because you’re at home doesn’t mean you have any more time to cook breakfast than you would normally. But it does mean you have access to a fuller kitchen than is found in your car or corporate office, and you have at least some ability to stock it with a wider variety foods than will fit in your day bag or desk drawer.

As someone who has worked from home for years, I’ve found plenty of ways to make my first meal of the day healthy, varied, and enjoyable. Here are some of my go-to breakfasts at home.
Learn to make pantry breakfasts and Improv Smoothies