Raise your hand if you’ve immersed yourself in holiday baking this season! The baking craze is in full swing in my house, but I’ve been keeping it simple this year. Easy, no-bake recipes are my jam right now. I have made these Oreo Balls a few times in the past few weeks..Read More
At times I envision myself as a juggler. A really good juggler. As I gaze sky-ward at the bowling pins arcing over me, I think to myself, "Whoa. That's a lot of bowling pins." Then, "What if they come crashing down on my head?" Which, of course, motivates me to KEEP JUGGLING.Read More
Literally when the calendar flips over to October every year, I begin instantly craving a couple of things: scary movies, soup, hot bubble baths, breathing in the crisp fall air and....CANDY. The other night, on October 1st to be exact, after the boys were in bed and Dan and I were in lounge mode, we both expressed intense desires for candy.Read More
This post is coming to you from Minneapolis Children's Hospital. I'd have to go through my archives to be sure, but this could be my first post ever written from the hospital. Elijah is currently having the ear bones in his left ear reconstructed to hopefully restore hearing that he has been without for a few years now.Read More
I love hiding edible treasures inside baked goods. The obvious perk is consuming said treats, but I also love seeing others' reactions upon biting into something unexpected. "Oohh, what a good coo....OHHHh! Is that CANDY?! CARAMEL?! WHAT IS THAT?!!" The only thing better than pleasing a friend with a holiday cookie is double pleasing a friend with a holiday cookie.
This was my first attempt at a crinkle cookie and also my first time baking with black cocoa, which added a delicious touch of richness. If you are unable to find black cocoa, replace it with unsweetened cocoa. The cookies will still make you squeal, I promise.
Here is Day #7 of Twelve Days of Christmas Treats!
In a medium bowl, combine:
2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 cup black cocoa (substitution: unsweetened cocoa)
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
In a large bowl, combine:
10 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Using a hand-held mixer, mix on medium speed until smooth.
Gradually add the flour mixture and mix until just combined.
Using your hands, pat the batter into a giant ball and wrap it up in plastic wrap.
Refrigerate for a minimum of 2 hours, or until completely chilled.
While your dough is chilling, unwrap 24 Rolos candies and set them aside.
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
I turned around to find a gigantic chocolate tower that had been constructed by my youngest helper. Nice, Sammy!
Pour 1 cup of confectioners' sugar into a small bowl and set aside.
Remove the dough from the refrigerator. Scoop out a large spoonful of the dough and flatten it into a disc, using your fingers. Place a Rolo into the center of the disc.
Wrap the dough around it, forming a ball. Smooth out the creases in the dough as much as possible.
Roll the ball in the confectioners' sugar and coat completely. Do this twice!
Repeat this process with the remainder of the dough and place on the prepared baking sheets.
Bake in the preheated oven for 10 minutes.
Enjoy your weekend (and, um, these cookies)!
There isn't much that tastes like Christmas to me more than an old-fashioned sugar cookie. I have posted a few other sugar cookie recipes on this blog, so I wanted to do something a bit different this time. As I flipped through a holiday-themed recipe magazine in the check-out line a few days ago, I spotted something intriguing. Ginger in a sugar cookie?! Fun!Read More
I am doing my best to type over and around the head and arms of one of my precious monkeys right now, so please forgive me if I make a few mistakes! Sometimes Sammy insists on sitting next to (or on) me and "helping" me while I work. I cannot say no to that. He is in the absolute cutest stage right now. My heart melts into a puddle about 150 times a day.Read More
I wish I had found this cookie recipe at Christmas-time because it would have rounded out my holiday cookie tray quite nicely. I saw these in Better Homes & Gardens magazine and knew I wanted to make them, holidays or no holidays. Lemon Drops candies inside of cookies sounded insanely fabulous.Read More
Apparently some people are wanting healthy recipes?! I'll get back to that in February. :) I spent much of my December brainstorming sugary, gooey treats, so it has been hard to get them out of my brain. Last week I was pondering a "loaded" cookie in bar form, and how easy they would be when using pre-made dough.Read More
This is Week #52 of my 2011 cooking challenge! Click here to view all recipes from this challenge. All recipes created for this challenge come from the Food and Wine Annual Cookbook 2010: An Entire Year of Recipes.
Although I am a few weeks behind, this post completes my year-long challenge! It was such a fun challenge and it pushed me to create many things in my kitchen that I otherwise would not have. I thought this was a fitting recipe to end with since I have been such a cookie fanatic lately. I loved the ganache! Sandwiched in between the cookies, it rounded out the taste just perfectly.
And yes, I'm done with my diet, so bring on the chocolate!
Preheat your oven to 375 degrees F. Spread 1 cup of walnuts in a pie plate and toast them for 8 minutes. Let cool and chop. Set aside.
In a medium bowl, combine:
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
In the bowl of a mixer fitted with a paddle, combine:
1 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Beat on medium speed for 1 minute. Beat in 1 egg. On low speed, beat in the dry ingredients. Stir in the walnuts and 1 cup of bittersweet chocolate chips.
Spoon level tablespoons of the dough onto 2 ungreased baking sheets, 2 inches apart. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Place 4 ounces of chopped bittersweet chocolate in a medium bowl.
In a small saucepan, bring 5 tablespoons of heavy whipping cream and 2 1/2 tablespoons light corn syrup to a boil. Pour mixture over the chocolate and let stand for 1 minute. Whisk until smooth.
Whisk in 2 tablespoons of crème fraîche.
Refrigerate the ganache, stirring occasionally, until thick and spreadable, 1 hour.
Bake the cookies for 12 minutes, until golden. Let cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes, then transfer to a rack to cool completely.
Sandwich the cookies with the ganache and serve!
Don't they look delicious?!
It's been a few weeks since I have felt like baking, which is unusual for me. It felt good to be in the kitchen again this past weekend, creating treats for people (and, um, myself) to enjoy. This is the last Rachael Ray cookie recipe I plan to make this Christmas season. After this, I will be moving onto some of my own creations!Read More
One of my favorite parts of baking (aside from eating the yumminess) is spending quality time with my boys. Just recently my 4-year-old has shown an interest in helping me in the kitchen. He enjoys patting (rolling) dough for me and mixing ingredients together with a big spoon, but the thing he likes most is sampling, of course!Read More
A ginger snap surprise!
I'm going to start referring to myself as Crazy Baking Lady. My desire to bake delicious treats has surpassed my desire to get sufficient sleep. I find myself wondering on occasion whether or not one can actually die from being too tired. Because most days, I feel like a zombie. A very tired zombie with a baking fetish. It's a good thing my husband is around to monitor the oven.
Here is yet another cookie recipe of Rachael's (from EveryDay with Rachael Ray) that intrigued me. Ginger+cookies+peanut butter+confectioners' sugar?! Whoa. I had to make it. So, of course, I did. I filled the bellies of those I live with and of those I work with. I got a wide array of comments on these cookies:
"There's a peanut butter cup in there? WHAT WERE YOU THINKING?" (my favorite)
"They remind me of ginger snaps! With a surprise!"
"Do you ever sleep?"
To make these gems, here is what you will need to do:
In a medium bowl, whisk together:
3 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt
In a large bowl, cream the following ingredients together using an electric mixer:
2 sticks (8 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 light brown sugar
Beat until light and fluffy, 2 minutes. Beat in 1 egg for 30 seconds, then mix in 1/3 cup molasses. Add the flour mixture in 2 batches, mixing on low speed until just combined.
Turn out the dough onto a large piece of plastic wrap. Using the wrap to help, form the dough into a disk and seal tightly. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour or up to 1 day.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line 3 cookie sheets with parchment paper. Working with 1 tablespoon of dough at a time, mold the dough around each (of 36 total) peanut butter cup to enclose completely.
Place 12 dough balls onto each prepared pan. Bake until the tops are just set and slightly cracked, 12 to 14 minutes. Transfer the cookies to a rack to cool for 5 minutes.
Roll the cookies in a small bowl filled with confectioners' sugar, then return to the rack to cool completely. Roll the cookies in the sugar again before serving.
These are definitely unique, but quite delicious! Enjoy! For another great recipe with peanut-butter check out these Peanut Butter & Jelly Bars. Great for any age!
Be prepared to SWOON over these cookies! So delicious!
If you haven't noticed, I've been on a bit of a sweet kick lately. A few nights ago I felt a strong urge to make these peppermint-chocolate cookies when I got home from work. I saw the recipe in Rachael Ray's EveryDay magazine and fell intensely in love. And that was before I bit into them.
Then. I bit into them..
The gates of heaven opened up, music began to play, I danced in perfect circles, until...I needed another bite. This went on for the first three cookies, when I realized that I needed to stop. I had to dig deep within myself to find every ounce of self-control. I could have eaten both pans. All 24 cookies. I'm not kidding.
(adapted from: Rachael Ray's EveryDay magazine)
In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat together on low speed:
1 1/2 cups flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup light brown sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 sticks (6 ounces) unsalted butter, slightly softened
Turn out the dough onto a large piece of plastic wrap and flatten into a disk; seal. Refrigerate until firm, about 1 hour.
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper. Working with approximately 1 tablespoon of dough at a time, use your fingers to evenly encase each of 24 miniature peppermint patties (unwrapped and chilled) with the dough.
Place on the prapared pans and smooth the dough with your fingers, if needed.
Bake until just firm to the touch, about 15 minutes. Remove the pans from the oven and let cool slightly. Transfer the cookies on the parchment to a rack to cool completely.
In a small bowl, microwave 6 ounces of white chocolate chips on high in 30-second bursts until it is creamy and completely smooth when stirred.
Using a large spoon, drizzle the white chocolate over the cookies. Let cool completely before serving or storing.
Be prepared to get a glimpse of heaven upon biting into these cookies. Just wait, you will see what I mean!
This is Week #42 of my 2011 cooking challenge! Click here to view all recipes from this challenge. All recipes created for this challenge come from the Food and Wine Annual Cookbook 2010: An Entire Year of Recipes.
One day I will look back on this post and wonder how in the world I managed to finish these cookies. It has been a struggle for me to stay in one piece for the past week. I keep push-push-pushing my limits, and my body has finally told me plainly (for the third time in the past two months), SLOW DOWN, WOMAN. Ok, ok. I'm realizing that I actually need to heed these warnings, so I am slowing down. This week, my life has been all about: early bedtimes, hydration, knowing that the world won't end if I don't get a certain batch of photos edited, SLEEPING, eating, becoming more aware of what my body needs. Oh yeah, and working full-time and caring for two little munchkins. So. It has been hard to fit in much of anything else.
I made the cookies on Sunday night and the malted cream on Monday night. Somehow I got them photographed before falling into my comfortable bed for some much-needed slumber. Thankfully they were quite scrumptious, and the coworkers I shared them with seemed to enjoy them.
Oh me oh my, it's a mystery! What oh WHAT could the secret ingredient be?
I saw this recipe in Food Everyday: Martha Stewart Magazine and was intrigued by the "mystery" in the title. Mysteries are always exciting, right? I read through the recipe, and I loved what the mystery ingredient was. I made the cookies almost immediately! I ended up bringing most of these to work with me, and it was fun to hear what people thought the mystery ingredient was after they took a couple bites. I got all kinds of guesses!
And here it is! The mystery ingredient. An assortment of miniature candy bars. Genius!
Coarsely chop 16 miniature candy bars. I used exactly what you see in the above photo: Twix (4), Milky Way (4), 3 Musketeers (4) and Snickers (4). I'm sure any kind and any combination would be just as wonderful. And these were wonderful.
Cut 20 caramels in half. Set the candy bars and caramels aside.
In a large bowl, whisk together:
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon fine salt
1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
Using an electric mixer, beat together in another large bowl:
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
1 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Beat on high until fluffy and pale, about 3 minutes.
Beat in 2 large eggs.
With mixer on low, beat in the flour mixture in three additions until combined. Fold in caramels and candy bars.
On parchment-lined baking sheets, press cookie dough into 2-inch circles, 2 inches apart (9 cookies per baking sheet). Bake for 8 minutes in the preheated oven.
Remove from the oven and press M&M's candies onto cookies for decoration.
I'm not kidding you, I had this bowl of M&M's off of the counter for 1 second before a chubby hand scooped into it. This was not a staged photo. :)
Return the baking sheet to the oven and bake for 8 to 9 additional minutes. Remove from the oven and let the cookies cool completely.
Getting the cookies off of the parchment paper without breaking them was a bit tricky. The caramel that seeped onto the bottoms of the cookies (uhh, yum!) liked to stick to my spatula. And then to the cooling rack. One thing that helped was using a metal spatula and loosening the perimeter of each cookie before trying to completely free it. I generously sprayed my wire rack with cooking spray before transferring them, as well.
I have to tell you that these were totally delicious little treats. I loved the different flavors from the different kinds of candy bars. It's 3 Musketeers! No, wait! It's Snickers! No, caramel! Looking for a cookie more geared for the sophisticate pallet? Try out my Salted Caramel Refrigerator Cookies all the caramel flavor, but a little more "grown-up!"
My favorite type of cookie by far is the oatmeal raisin cookie. Somehow they always seem chewier and gooier (hmmm, how might one spell that? gooey-er? gooeyer? gooier?) than other types of cookies. And of course oatmeal and raisins are a delightful little match.Read More