The spring semester is winding down, but the work is winding up, leaving no room for hobbies that make you happy. For me, cooking and baking are some of the best ways to reset and focus on something besides school or work, but around finals, it seems like there’s no time for it. Therefore, to keep myself and all of you readers sane, I’ll outline a plan to do your favorite activities in between the work. If you’re like me, that means exercising your creative cooking muscles.
Amid writing three essays, studying for three final exams and one political campaign project, it’s hard to find time for my favorite hobby. However, I find it’s vital to make time for those activities or insanity reigns.
The first way that I make time to cook/bake is meal plan. If I plan all my meals at the beginning of the week, it allows me to exercise those creative muscles while doing an everyday activity, eating. The same goes for any hobby: you can plan time for your hobbies in between your work so that you don’t feel like you’re sacrificing one thing for another.
The second way I work in a little time to work on my creative outlet is make mostly desserts that take a long time to bake or chill, like cakes, pies or ice cream. Ice cream especially is a good example of a dessert that takes a lot of time with almost no intensive labor. You make the cream base usually out of cream and sugar, with whatever flavoring you would like, let the machine churn it for hours and hours, then allow it to freeze overnight. During that waiting period you can work on school projects or work and have freshly made ice cream waiting for you.
The third way I feed my cooking/baking addiction is to make food that takes no time at all. My favorite recipe to fit in a little right-brain activity is my super simple peanut butter cookies:
1 cup smooth peanut butter
¾ cup sugar, plus more for dusting
½ teaspoon vanilla
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a small baking sheet with parchment paper, set aside.
In a medium size bowl whisk together the peanut butter and sugar until a smooth paste forms. Add the egg and vanilla and mix until smooth. The cookie dough will be very thick.
Using a small cookie scoop or spoon, scoop even amounts of dough onto the baking sheet. Press each ball of dough with the palm of your hand to form a flat sphere. Take a fork and make a crisscross pattern on the top of each cookie. Sprinkle some sugar on top of each cookie.
Bake for 10-12 minutes or until golden brown and crisp. Enjoy!
*You can also add a Hershey’s kiss to the top of the freshly baked cookies and let them melt slightly into the hot cookie*
I wish you good luck on your finals, UCCS. Hang in there and try to make time to do the things you enjoy the most, because you deserve it!