1.4 million people.

This is the number of people in the US that suffer from Crohn’s disease and Colitis. There is no cure. One of those sufferers, is my best friend Beka.

She is a vivacious,  sharp as a tack girl with a wicked sense of humor – who also suffers from Crohn’s disease. After being diagnosed 6 years ago, while we were both in college together, she’s gone through the ups and downs of her diesease with strength and resiliance that I don’t think I could muster.
She stook next to me at my wedding, the most important day of my life to date. She has taught me the fine art of sarcasm and latkes at Hanukkah. We have been together for eight fabulous years, having seen each other through highs and lows, boyfriends in college and roast chickens that ended in passive aggressive girl fights and tears, and IMing eachother across our living room in college to decide what we would have for dinner. We consider each other our “other” soul mates – and my life wouldn’t be the same without her.
Because of her Crohn’s, Beka will be on multiple medications and infusions for the rest of her life. She will have to time her future pregnancies around ridding her system of those medications that would otherwise harm her children – ensuring she deals not only with prenancy itself but the implications and complications of the Crohn’s. And lastly, she could quite possibily have to endure future surgeries to remove additional ulcerated intestine to ease the pain of this, at times, debilitating condition.
But she is not alone. And for the 1,399,999 others in this country alone that suffer from Crohns and colitis there is not often relief. There can be, if we help find a cure.
Beka will be running her first half marathon to benefit the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America. After her first 5K earlier this year, the training she noticed began to suppress the symptoms of her condition. This only grew her resolved to run farther, and this time around – for a cause.
The money raised by the TeamChallenge for the CCFA goes to research and funding Camp Oasis, a camp for kids with Crohn’s and Colitis. Childhood is a precious time in life that should never be held back on because of any disease. Camp Oasis provides a place for kids with Crohn’s to be kids, with other kids like themselves, without fear or judgement and with the support of people who understand them and can help them navigate the difficulties of their condition in a safe and understanding environment. All this being done while protecting this precious time in their lives.
Over 80% of the funds raised go directly to research and funding Camp Oasis. Minimal overhead means more money goes right to the source. Right to the kids who need it most, and right to the research facilities that will help find a cure. You’d be hard pressed to find many organizations with that ratio. It’s a brilliantly efficient model.
So – to help raise the additional funds Beka needs to participate in her race, to raise money for the cure, to help send deserving kids to camp – we’re HAVING A BAKE SALE!
25 bloggers and numerous generous and wonderful companies have all rallied together to donate baked goods and utterly fantastic loot to bid on and help raise goods for the CCFA and TeamChallenge. Will you join us?
Here are a few items that will be available during this giveaway!
 6 32oz Variety Party Pack of Chobani Yogurt
1 Month’s worth of KerryGold Butter and Cheese
A Basket full of Olive Oils and Mediterranean classics from Star Fine Foods
One 4 ½ quart Cassis LeCreuset Round French Oven
A copy of the recently release America’s Test Kitchen Quick Family Cookbook and the new Cook’s Country Complete Series Cookbook.
 These companies all deserve a huge round of applause, a shout from the root tops and a big bear hug. They will all be up for bid OCTOBER 28 AND 29TH here at Country Cleaver. Get your bidding, twitchy, clicky mouse trigger fingers ready and bid on fantastic baked goods and over the top loot from people who make the world go ’round.
And be sure to spread the word. Let’s make this something to remember.
Now – for the cookies!! America’s Test Kitchen is releasing their newest cookbook the Quick Family Cookbook and it only seemed fitting to whip up a batch of Death by Chocolate cookies that will also be up for bid during the bake sale. And ya know, a batch of Pistachio Shortbread‘s only seemed natural also. Naturally.

Ingredients for Death by Chocolate Cookies

  • Flour
  • Dutch Processed Cocoa
  • Baking Soda
  • Salt
  • Sugar
  • Brown Sugar
  • Butter
  • Eggs
  • Vanilla
  • Bittersweet Chocolate
All recipes in the Quick Family Cookbook are prepped in 45 minutes or less. And that’s no fib. They also disappear in about that same amount of time.
The Pistachio Shortbreads’ might even disappear faster. Just sayin’. Okay fine, it’s a tie. And a win-win situation either way.
So see you all on Sunday morning bright and early right here at Country Cleaver to get bidding and get some fabulous baked goodies and killer SWAG. Be sure to visit the bloggers and companies alike to give them a HUGE, RESOUNDING Thank you. This is a total team effort and it couldn’t have happened without them.
See you then, everyone – coffee in hand and bunny slippers on your feetsies!

Inspired Homemade Recipes To Try

Chocolate Raspberry Thumbprint Cookies

Chocolate Orange Shortbread Cookies

Pecan Chocolate Fudge Chunk Cookies

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Death by Chocolate Cookies stacked on a napkin

Death by Chocolate Cookies

  • Author: Megan Keno
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 14 minutes
  • Total Time: 24 minutes
  • Yield: 24 cookies 1x
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: American


Chewy, soft and rich chocolate cookies studded with chunks of bittersweet chocolate.  They are sure to satisfy your chocolate cravings!


Units Scale
  • 1 1/2 cups Flour
  • 1/2 cup Dutch Processed Cocoa
  • 1/2 tsp Baking Soda
  • 1/4 tsp Salt
  • 3/4 cup Sugar
  • 3/4 cup Brown Sugar
  • 10 Tsp Butter, melted and cooled
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1 tsp Vanilla
  • 4 oz. Bittersweet Chocolate, chopped


  1. Adjust oven racks to upper-middle and lower-middle positions and heave oven to 375 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Whisk flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt together in bowl.
  2. Whisk together granulated sugar and brown sugar in large bowl. Whisk in melted butter until incorporated.
  3. Whisk in eggs and vanilla until smooth. Gently stir in flour mixture with rubber spatula until soft dough forms. Stir in chopped chocolate.
  4. Working with 2 tablespoons of dough at a time, drop cookies 2 inches apart on baking sheet.
  5. Bake cookies until edges are set but centers are soft and chewy, about 14 minutes, switching and rotating baking sheets halfway through baking.
  6. Let cookies cool slightly on baking sheets. Serve while warm or at room temperature.


America’s Test Kitchen Quick Family Cookbook