I sometimes wish I could have conversations with my past, younger self…here’s a conversation between Little and Big Adrianna that I wish I could have:
Big Adrianna: Hey…geez you’re tiny.
Little Adrianna: You’re tiny too and you’re supposed to be a grown adult. Umm…I don’t mean to be a harsh, but you don’t look like Cindy Crawford. People tell me I’m gonna grow up to look like her.
Big Adrianna: I know I know, disappointing. I’m not as rich either. Oh and by the way, sweet punch stain on your upper lip. Classy.
Little Adrianna: I like Hawaiian Punch, sue me. Hmm…well, your hair is pretty.
Big A: Oh yea…way nicer. I mean, I have to blow it straight and I need this fancy straightening cream and a flat iron…but it works, you know.
Little A: Yeah, totally…well, you look really happy.
Big A: I am…really happy.
Little A: Is it as hard as they say? You know, life…
Big A: (sigh) Yea totally…unfortunately. Childhood is hard. Teenage years are hard. (sigh) Love is hard.
Little A: Love?
Big A: Yea, that’s right…you’ll fall in love, be loved and have your heartbroken. But it’s awesome. So awesome. You’ll want to do it again…over and over, no matter what.
Little A: Hmmm…what else?
Big A: Well…lets see. Mom and Dad are cool…you still love them a whole lot. Dad still tells you what to do, but you sorta like it and strangely listen. Daniel is your friend. He calls you for girl advice and you think that’s fun.
Oh! You like coffee now…you love it, actually. You like all sorts of vegetables now, too…all kinds.
Little A: Weird. Even carrots?
Big A: Yeah, you totally love carrots. Especially when they’re roasted with honey…and even raw ones…and when they’re in cookies and cakes. I made these cookies for you just to prove to you that you can like ‘em too.
Little A: Oh yea…they’re not bad. Not bad at all…kind of amazing, actually. Uh…thanks.
Big A: Yea, no problem. (pause)
Oh and if you ever get really sad while sitting in your room listening to Brian McKnight, writing poetry with your Hello Kitty pencil just remember this: you’ll be loved. It’ll make the hard stuff alright. Trust me on this.
Little A: Umm…okay. Thanks.
Big A: See you on the flip side, chiquita.
Carrot Cake Sandwich Cookies with Cream Cheese Filling
Recipe from The Craft of Baking
3/4 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 large egg
3/4 cup roughly grated carrots (about 1 1/2 medium carrots
3 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
Finely grated zest of 1 lemon
1 tablespoons granlated sugar
Pinch of kosher salt
Preheat the oven to 350˚F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
Grind the oats in a food processor or blender to make a fine flour. In a medium bowl, whisk together the oat flour, all-purpose flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking soda, and salt.
In a bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter, brown sugar, granulated sugar, and vanilla extract on medium speed until well combined. Add the egg and beat to combine, scraping down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula. With the mixer on the lowest speed, add the dry ingredients in two additions, scraping down the sides of the bowl after each one. Add the carrots and mix until just to combine. The dough will be very sticky.
Drop 1-tablespoon mounds of the dough onto the prepared baking sheets, spacing them 1/2 inch apart. Bake, rotating the sheets once halfway through, until the cookies are golden brown and spring back when gently touched in the center, about 12 minutes. Cool the cookies completely, on the baking sheets set on a wire rack, before filling.
To make the filling, in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese, butter, lemon zest, sugar, and salt on medium speed until well combined, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. (The filling can be kept in a covered container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. Let it come to room temperature before using.)
Using a small spoon or spatula, spread 1 teaspoon of the filling over the flat side of half of the cookies. Sandwich with the remaining cookies, flat sides together.
The cookies can be kept in an airtight container for up to 2 days.