“Take 5″ Bars

So it was Halloween time and my husband and I were picking out candy for the trick-or-treaters we expected.  We came across a bag of Take 5 bars…a favorite of mine that I had forgot about. The chocolate..the caramel…the hint of peanut butter and of course the pretzel crunch..all rolled up together. So of course I was enjoying one of my recently remembered favorites and I got to thinking these flavors would be great as a cookie bar…but how to do it?

Well it took me a couple weeks to put all the pieces together but I finally did.  This is what I came up with….

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I took my mom’s chocolate cookie recipe and took out the chocolate chips and replace them with Nestle Tollhouse Delightfuls that are filled with peanut butter. Hint of peanut butter…check.

The next challenge was the nougat..how to duplicate without over powering. I thank my husband for the idea of using marshmallow creme. Next layer was the chocolate and pretzel.  I decided to melt the chocolate and cover the pretzel  and layer into on top. Finally I topped it all off with caramel drizzle. Nougat, chocolate, pretzel, caramel….all check!

I assembled it all and chilled in the fridge…so here was the moment of truth….testing a little bite. I have to say it was a pretty good balance of all the flavors. I might tweak a few thing in further batches but I took these to my work and they were a huge hit!

So here is the recipe:

"Take 5" Bars
 
A cookie bar that combines the flavors of a favorite candy bar
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Ingredients
  • 1 C Butter(2 Sticks)
  • 1½ C Packed Brown Sugar
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp Baking Soda
  • 1 tsp Vanilla
  • 2½ C Flour
  • 1 Bag Nestle Tollhouse Delightfuls
  • Peanut Butter Chips
  • ½ C Marshmallow Creme
  • 5-6 Regular Size Chocolate Bars
  • 1 C Crushed Pretzels
  • Caramel Sauce for drizzling
Instructions
  1. Cream together butter and sugar.
  2. Add eggs, salt, soda, and vanilla
  3. Mix in the flour and then the chips
  4. Spread in a 9x13 pan, pressing into the pan making an even layer
  5. Baked at 350 degrees for 12-15 mins or until done in center
  6. Let cool ( put in the fridge if needed)
  7. Take chocolate bars and break into pieces and melt. Take the pretzels and crush in bag into smaller pieces
  8. Cover pretzel pieces in melted chocolate and set aside a minute
  9. Once pan is cooled spread the marshmallow creme, use more if needed you want a nice even layer.
  10. Then spread the chocolate pretzel mixture pressing into the marshmallow creme.
  11. Drizzle caramel sauce on top and put in fridge for 1 hour to allow everything to set.
Notes
The pretzels and the chocolate need to be in the same ratio. You can also use chocolate chips.

 

Margarita Cookies

So a couple weeks back was my friend’s boyfriend’s 21st birthday.  I was going to make him some Margarita cupcakes to celebrate the occasion but I just wasn’t feeling it, so I decided instead to go with cookies. Originally I was thinking I would take a sugar cookie recipe and ad lime and salt but then I thought maybe I should see if there were any recipes already out there. I found several and they all basically had the ingredients that I thought to add. I decided to try the Sugar Rimmed Margarita Cookies from McCormick. I like the mix of ingredients that it had. I did followed the recipe except for I omitted the rubbed sage. The recipe comes together pretty easy and has you form the dough into logs and chill. I made the dough the night before I baked them as the recipe calls for it to be chilled for at least an hour it was worked best with my schedule.

So on the day that I baked them I rolled the logs of dough in a sanding sugar salt mixture.  I them sliced and baked them.  The recipe has you slice them about 1/4 ” thick but I found that they came out a little too crisp so I would slice them 1/2″ thick.  You bake them for about 12 mins in a 350 degree oven.

In the oven...

In the oven…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The other deviation that I did from the recipe was the tequila glaze. I was going to take these to work so I opted not to include the tequila. I instead exchanged the tequila for lime juice. The glaze came out good but was missing a little something. So I added a pinch of  sea salt to the glaze…that made it perfect.  You had the brightness of the lime and then finished off with the salt.  Instead of drizzling over the cookie I opted for dip the cookie in the the glaze, just the top and then let them set on a rack.  So in the end you have the glaze on top and the sugared rim.  Everyone at work loved them and my neighbors did too…oh yeah and so did my friend’s boyfriend who gave me the inspiration. So here is the finished product…recipe is below. If you want the original recipe click on the name of the recipe above.

All finished….

All finished….

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Margarita Cookies
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: 2-3 dz
Ingredients
  • Cookies:
  • 2 cups flour
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¾ cup (1½ sticks) butter, softened
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon finely grated lime peel
  • 1 teaspoon McCormick® Pure Orange Extract
  • ¼ cup sanding sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • Lime Glaze:
  • 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • pinch of sea salt to taste
Instructions
  1. For the Cookies:
  2. Mix flour and ¼ teaspoon salt in medium bowl. Set aside. Beat butter and granulated sugar in large bowl with electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy. Add egg, lime peel, extract; mix well.
  3. Gradually beat in flour mixture on low speed until well mixed.
  4. Divide dough in half. Form each half into a log about 9 inches long
  5. and 1½ inches in diameter. Wrap in wax paper.
  6. Refrigerate 1 hour or until firm.
  7. Preheat oven 350°F. Mix sanding sugar and kosher salt. Roll each cold dough log in mixture to coat evenly.
  8. Cut dough into ¼-inch thick slices. Place on ungreased baking sheets.
  9. Bake 12 to 15 minutes or until lightly browned around edges. Cool on baking sheets 1 minute. Remove to wire racks; cool completely.
  10. For the Lime Glaze, mix confectioners’ sugar, water and lime juice in small bowl until smooth.
  11. Dip cookies into glaze. Let stand until glaze is set.

Mountain Dew Apple Cobbler

 

 

So a couple weeks back I was perusing one of my favorite Facebook groups, Just Desserts and one of the members posted a recipe called Mountain Dew Apple Cobbler…I was immediately intrigued. I took the recipe that she posted and tried it and was immediately amazed at how easy the recipe was.  This is a recipe that even if you don’t consider yourself a baker you can make. It is a great dish to make if you need to take something to a potluck or BBQ..so easy and everyone will love it.

So here is the breakdown….I was telling some friends at work how easy this recipe is and they all agreed that it was easy.  So you get 2 cans of crescent rolls and 2 granny smith apples, you want granny smith because you want an apple that has a bit of tang as oppose to sweet, this recipe is sweet enough. Butter, cinnamon, and sugar and Mountain Dew( or a citrus based soda).

You want to slice each apple into 8 wedges. You have one can of rolls per apple. Wrap each apple wedge in a roll triangle and put in a baking dish seam side down. I used my cast iron skillet but you can use any baking dish lightly greased.  I would steer clear of glass though because the rolls might get scorched on the bottom.

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Melt a cup of butter( 2 sticks) and add 1 1/2 cups of sugar. I have read some of the reviews of this recipe on Food.com and All Recipes.com and many people have said that they reduced the sugar or did half white and half brown. For me I stuck with the recipe and used 1 1/2 white sugar.  You can try any combination.  You spread the mixture of the wrapped apples and then pour the Mountain Dew over the top.  I have made this recipe twice( first time I didn’t have apples and rolls ratio to other ingredients correct) and both times the Mountain Dew liquid seemed to be too much.  So I read more of the reviews to see if other thought the same. My consensus was that the Mountain Dew is supposed to help create a syrup with the butter and that you can reduce if you wish. I read some people reducing it to 1/2 cup ( from original 1 1/2 cups) to 1 cup.  I also saw the recipe listing one can( 12 oz can) of Mountain Dew. There is a lot of options. The next time that I make this I will probably reduce it down to the 12oz of Mountain Dew just to get the right consistency of the syrup without having to pour of liquid once it is done baking. Sprinkle the top with cinnamon.

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So once it is all assembled you bake in a 350 degree oven for 45-50 mins until golden bubbly. I would let it sit for about 10 mins and you can serve it warm with vanilla ice cream.  It is also great left over just heat in the microwave for about 10 second so it is nice and warm.  The apples are soft but with a crisp flavor and the crescent rolls and cinnamon add a great crust.  You will love it! Everyone that I have serve this to has said how yummy it is. So run to the store and get the ingredients and make this easy fall treat…It is totally worth it!

Mountain Dew Apple Cobbler
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Ingredients
  • 2 granny smith apples (peel & cut into 8 sections each)
  • 2 cans crescent rolls (1 can for each apple)
  • 1 cup real butter (not margarine)
  • 1½ cups sugar
  • 1½ cups Mountain Dew soda(you can adjust down to 12 oz can of soda, if you don't like Mt Dew you can use any citrus based soda)
Instructions
  1. Wrap each ⅛ apple section in crescent roll dough.
  2. Place in lightly greased baking dish.
  3. Melt butter& mix with sugar, spread over apples.
  4. Pour Mountain Dew over apples.
  5. DO NOT STIR.
  6. Sprinkle with cinnamon& chopped nuts.
  7. Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for approximately 45 minutes.
  8. Can be served with ice cream or whipped cream.
  9. Enjoy!

 

Mint Chocolate Cupcakes with Chocolate Ganache

A couple weeks back it was a friend of mine’s birthday, so I asked her what were some of her favorite recipes that I had made for her trying to  could get some ideas for what to make for her.  She mentioned the Mint Chocolate cupcakes that I made well over two years ago.  I had totally forgot about them…they were some of the first cupcakes that I made with my close friend Marcie(of Marcie Bakes). So I found the recipe and headed to the kitchen.  I forgot how simple and easy  the recipe was.  I decided to take it up a notch and add a chocolate ganache for the center. It add another layer of flavor to these already tasty cupcakes.  The recipe calls for peppermint extract…now the bottle  of peppermint extract that I had had an unfortunate accident,  so off to the store I went to get a replacement.  When I got to the store, I saw that there was peppermint extract and mint extract…hmmm which to choose? I decided to go with the mint extract to see how it would change the recipe.  I was so glad that I did…It made the frosting taste more like mint ice cream…so yummy!   If you like more of a peppermint candy mint then go with the peppermint extract. Either way you go will be good. The ganache recipe was pretty simple as well although when I was whipping it, it seemed to be a little bitter so I added a little powdered sugar to add a little sweetness, do it a tablespoon at a time to your own taste.

So here is the recipe and some pictures of the end results. Enjoy!

 

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Filled with ganache and ready for frosting

Mint Chocolate Cupcakes

Mint Chocolate Cupcakes

Mint Chocolate Cupcakes
 
Author:
Recipe type: Cupcakes
Ingredients
  • Cupcakes:
  • 1 cup plus 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 1 cup flour
  • 7 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
  • ¾ teaspoon baking powder
  • ¾ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • ½ cup milk
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter (1/2 stick); room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon peppermint extract
  • ¼ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • ½ cup boiling water
  • Icing:
  • 2 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter (1/2 stick); room temperature
  • 3 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon peppermint extract
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • Green food coloring, if desired
  • Ganache:
  • 10 ounces milk chocolate, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened Dutch-processed cocoa powder
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 2-3 tablespoons of powdered sugar
Instructions
  1. Cupcakes:
  2. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line muffin pans with paper cupcake liners, or grease and flour.
  3. First, bring water to boil, remove from heat and whisk in cocoa powder. Set aside to cool. Cream butter and sugar together until smooth and fluffy. Add eggs, milk, peppermint and vanilla to the butter and sugar mixture. In a separate bowl, sift together the dry ingredients: flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Repeat sifting twice, it makes the batter smoother. Add approximately half of the dry ingredients to wet ingredients, beat together. Srape down sides of bowl and add the remainder of the dry ingredients. Again, beat together until batter is combined and smooth. Lastly, add cocoa mixture to batter. Beat all ingredients together on medium speed for approximately 1 minute. Batter is now ready to bake!
  4. Fill each cupcake liner ⅔ full with batter. Bake until tops are firm and a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean, 18 to 20 minutes. Transfer muffin pans to a wire rack and let cupcakes cool in pan for 10 minutes. Remove cupcakes from pan and let cool completely before frosting.
  5. Icing:
  6. Beat the confectioners’ sugar and butter until the mixture is crumbly, about 1 minute. Add the heavy cream, vanilla, mint extract, salt, and food coloring (if using) and beat on high until smooth and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Transfer frosting to a piping bag fitted with a decorative tip and pipe onto each cupcake.
  7. Ganache:
  8. Combine the cocoa powder and chocolate in a large mixing bowl.
  9. Bring the heavy cream just to a boil in a small saucepan over a medium heat. Pour hot cream over the chocolate in the bowl and let sit for 5 mins. Whisk until smooth.
  10. To use as a glaze, let the ganache cool to lukewarm and pour it over angel food cake. To whip it, first let it come to room temperature, until it is slightly thickened, about 1 hour. Then whip it with an electric mixer on medium-high speed until ganache hold soft peaks. Add the powdered sugar one tablespoon at a time to taste. About 2-3 minutes.

Summertime at Lyman Orchards

So a couple of weeks back my mom and I made our first trip to Lyman’s Orchard in Middlefield, CT.  We went for strawberries.  I have to admit that picking them was back breaking( I have a new respect for those that pick them for a living) but we came home with a good hall and were satisfied with what we got, plus we stopped at their store, the Apple Barrel and had a really yummy sandwich and pick up some other delicious goodies. So when I cam home I had to figure out what I was going to make and I came across Chocolate Moosey’s Real Strawberry Cake with Cream Cheese recipe. She used actual real strawberries for the flavor and coloring of the cake. I knew that is what I wanted to make with the strawberries that I got. I decided to make them into cupcakes so I had to modify the bake time and I didn’t have any milk that was called for in the recipe so I substituted buttermilk( to be honest I didn’t have fresh buttermilk but  used the dried buttermilk, SACO dried buttermilk blend). They came out really good! Such a great fresh strawberry flavor and the cream frosting complimented the cake, although the recipe for the frosting came out a little soft better for a cake. Next time that I make them I might try my mom’s sour cream frosting which is a little thicker and therefore would stand up on a cupcake. Here is  the recipe from  Chocolate Moosey’s blog: Strawberry Layer Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting.  I adjusted the bake time to 18-21 mins and I substituted 1 cup of buttermilk(i.e. 1 envelope dried buttermilk) And here are a few pictures of the cupcakes that I made.

Slicing up the fresh strawberries

Slicing up the fresh strawberries

Cooking the berries down to put in the batter

Cooking the berries down to put in the batter

Strawberry cupcakes fresh out of the oven

Strawberry cupcakes fresh out of the oven

Real strawberry cupcakes with cream cheese frosting

Real strawberry cupcakes with cream cheese frosting

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We decided that we wanted to go back for blueberries and peaches season which is at the latter part of July, since we had such a great time.   Well that was last week(roughly), we decideded to go on a Sunday in the afternoon and again we had a great time.  We got a ton of peaches and a fair amount of blueberries, I was so excited to get started on all the baking I was going to do. I had so many ideas muffins, cobblers, loaf bread….what was I going to make?  I get emails from King Arthur’s Flour and I was reading one that made me go look at their website. I came across their Famous Department Store Blueberry Muffins.  These muffins were so delicious and moist. The only changes that I made to the recipe was that I didn’t mash the blueberries as instructed in the recipe and I used Sugar in the Raw instead of the granulated sugar. I was so excited to try one when they came out of the oven I could barely wait until they cooled.  So full of blueberries and so moist,  I swear to you I ate three of them!  I will definitely make this recipe again. Here are a few pictures to tease you with.

Fresh Blueberries and Peaches from Lyman's Orchards

Fresh Blueberries and Peaches from Lyman’s Orchards

Look at all the blueberries in the this muffin!

Look at all the blueberries in the this muffin!

Fresh Blueberry Muffins from the oven

Fresh Blueberry Muffins from the oven

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So I am sure you are wondering what I decided to make with the peaches? Well I had to wait for them to ripen a bit and that gave me time to figure out what I wanted to make. I decided that I wanted to make a cobbler. A friend of mine at work told me that she had never tried a peach cobbler. What a perfect reason to make one with the peaches that I had. I went back to King Arthur’s Flour and looked at the different types of cobbler recipes that they had, cake style , traditional with the biscuit style topping, so many to choose from. I settled on the Cake Style Fruit Cobbler recipe that they have, you can use any fruit really so it was a no brainer that I use the peaches.  I looked up how to separate the peach flesh from the stone and came across a helpful how to on Wikihow.com, How to Select and Work with Peaches. This made it easy to get the peaches ready for the cobbler the only thing I would not do is to put the sliced peaches in the water- lemon juice solution because it adds too much liquid to the peaches and in turn adds too much liquid to the cobbler mixture.  Other than that I followed all the steps of the Wikihow how to.  I didn’t make any changes to the King Arthur recipe and it came out great! I had to deal with the extra liquid I already mentioned but everything came out ok. Here is the finished result:

Cake Style Peach Cobbler

Cake Style Peach Cobbler

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So that is my summertime recap of Lyman’s Orchard….my mom and I might try to make one more trip before blueberries are gone…who can resist fresh blueberries from a local grower?

 

 

Last Couple of Weeks of Baking

Well it has been a couple weeks since I las posted…Life happens but not to worry I have been busy baking.  So much baking that I had to make a list of what I have done in the last couple of weeks. I have posted a few pics on Facebook or Instagram of  the baking I have been doing but I decided to do a “round up” of the recipes that I have tried. So lets get started. First up is Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup S’mores Bars. A friend of mine posted this recipe on my timeline on Facebook and I knew that I had to make them. These bars were so easy to make and the instructions were so easy to follow. Six total ingredients and about 15 mins and you have the some of the tastiest treats. It is all of  your favorite ingredients like marshmallow , chocolate, graham crackers(in this case golden grahams) and peanut butter all rolled together. Great for a summer party or fun treat to take to your friends at work. I have to say thanks to Real HouseMoms for coming up with them. Here is the recipe :Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup S’mores Bars

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Next up is from the Pioneer Woman, Ree Drummond. I have just recently started watching her show  and following her on Facebook  and I really like how she does things. I came across one of her recipes called Crazy Brownies and was in love with them. These are brownies stuffed with all of your favorite candies inside.  There are Reese’s peanut butter cups, M&M’s, &  Rolo’s…Sounds good right? Now the Pioneer Woman put chopped pecans in them but I wasn’t a huge fan so I substituted Salted Caramel Coated Peanuts from Planter’s. But that was the only deviation from the recipes that I did. These were so good, her instructions were easy to follow and I loved the fact that you got a little bit of each candy in each brownie. Here is the recipe: Crazy Brownies.

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Lastly, I wanted to make something for my dad for Father’s Day but he is a diabetic. He is also a lover of blueberry pie. So I decided that I would try my hand at making a pie, my first mind you and I wanted to make it sugar free. I am not a huge fan of most artificial sweeteners but know that they are necessary for the diabetic. I went to Truvia’s( an artificial sweetener that is made from the leaves of the stevia plant) website, they had a recipe for a blueberry pie and I was excited! I decided to use a pre made crust, next time I will make my own and I used frozen Maine blueberries because I wanted to make sure that I had a good sweet blueberry. Fresh are good but sometime I have bought ones that aren’t sweet.  Later this month when my mom and I got back to Lyman’s Orchard here in CT  I want to make this  recipe again. I know that Lyman always has fresh sweet blueberries. But anyways back to the recipe…I  found this recipe so easy and the amount of blueberries that are in this pie are insane! But oh so yummy. I was worried that the filling would be a little artificial tasting but when it baked up it turned out really good.  Now the crust…well the crust didn’t come out so good  for me first time out but I know that next time I will do much better.(My dad still loved it crust and all) So here is the recipe: Truvia Blueberry Pie.

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So that is what I have been up to recently…I have a few more recipes that I have tried but I have made some adaptations to the original recipe and want to work on them some more before I posted them so those will be coming soon. For now try these recipes you will not be disappointed!

 

 

Chocolate Avocado Cupcakes

So the other day I had 3 very ripe avocados that needed to be used. Now most would have thought to make guacamole with them but I decided that I would see if I could find a recipe for avocado buttercream. I came across one from Pastry Affair (Recipe Link:www.pastryaffair.com) and it had a cupcake that incorporated avocado in the batter as well. It called for  an avocado in the cupcake batter and two in the buttercream. The recipe was pretty straight forward. It is a vegan recipe which did’t scare me off, in fact it intrigued me.  I have to tell you that as I made the cupcakes I was really impressed with the easy of the recipe and how they came out. They smelled wonderful, very chocolatey and had a moist texture. The frosting…well it was interesting. I may have not had enough avocados because the recipe calls for two medium and mine may have been on the small size, but the consistency of the buttercream was one that I wasn’t super excited about. It didn’t thicken like most buttercream in fact I might have but a little too much confectioner’s sugar because it wasn’t thickening like I expected but then again that may go back to the avocado size issue. I might make another go of it and use larger avocados just to see if that was my issue.  So for me I love the cupcake in fact I might make these again and use a different the buttercream. In fact the cupcakes were really yummy with a cup of coffee. With that thought I might even make a coffee buttercream.  I put the link above check it out and try it hopefully you have a little better luck with the buttercream.  Below are the pictures of the cupcake and buttercream process.

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Bake Sale Treats

A couple of weeks back, right about Mother’s  Day, my day job had a bake sale to raise money for Easter Seals. My company raises money for Easter Seals every year and last year our particular store decide to do a bake sale.  So for the second annual bake sale I came up with a few yummy treats.  Now most were recipes that I found on the internet from the many blogs that I follow.  I plan on listing the links below. But one is a recipe that I came up with.  Now I did find a recipe for Add a Pinch for Chewy Sugar Cookies because the one that I had in my recipe box was a rolled cookie and I want a droop cookie. I took the recipe and add one of my favorite ingredients….BACON! I topped the cookie with a maple buttercream. The result was so yummy! 

I have to back track a quick minute and tell you the inspiration for this cookie…I went to a local diner and had the most amazing breakfast…Bacon filled pancakes with bacon on top! So that got me to thinking…sugar cookie and bacon with a maple buttercream. And what a great time to showcase this creation than at the bake sale. In fact when I told people that I was making them, they were not exactly sure how it was going to work out.  Well I am proud to say that they were a hit! I am still working some of the kinks out of the recipe but the first draft is below.

So happy baking…more to come.

As promised here are the links to the other items that I made for the sale:

Lemon Brownies with a Strawberry Glaze

 

 

 

 

Funfetti Cookies with a Vanilla Buttercream

Bacon Cookies
 
Adapted from Add a Pinch recipe Serves: 36 cookies
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Ingredients
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
  • 11/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 21/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 5 Slices of Bacon, chopped
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350º F. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper or a nonstick baking mat.
  2. Cream together butter and granulated sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add egg and mix until well-combined.
  3. Stir in flour, baking powder, salt, and vanilla.
  4. Scoop cookie dough by the tablespoon full and roll into a ball.
  5. Add granulated sugar to a large bowl for rolling cookie dough in before baking. Place each ball of cookie dough into the bowl of granulated sugar and roll to coat well. Place cookie dough onto baking sheet, spacing about 11/2-inches to 2 inches apart. Lightly press each cookie down. Bake for 14 minutes or until lightly browned.

Maple Frosting
 
Maple Bacon Cookies Adapted from Add a Pinch recipe Serves: 36 cookies
Author:
Recipe type: Frosting
Ingredients
  • 4 cups (16 ounces) confectioners' sugar sifted
  • 6 tablespoons butter
  • 3-4 tablespoons heavy whipping cream
  • 1½ teaspoons maple flavoring
Instructions
  1. Combined butter, confectioner's sugar and maple flavoring. Then add heaving whipping cream.

Mexican Chocolate Layered Brownies

 

Well I meant to have this post done for Cinco de Mayo since these brownies would be a perfect addition to any Cinco de Mayo party.  But life happens and I missed posting it. So here is an idea for your next year’s Cinco de Mayo party, when you are invited to a friend’s party and don’t know what to make.  These are relatively easy to make there is just several steps to get to the point pictured on the right. But trust me they are worth it!

You start with making the brownie base, add the rich creamy filling and top with heavenly chocolate(all the exact particulars are below in the recipe).  What more could you ask for?? Now I will warn you, there is a little “heat” in these brownies.  Depending on how much you put in the batter the “heat” will sneak up on you.  I listed in the recipe ingredients that  you should put only 1/4 tsp of cayenne pepper or chili powder.  If you like a little extra heat you can go up to 1/2 tsp but not more that that.  The addition of the Lindt Chili Chocolate is not over powering even with the cayenne pepper, but again don’t over do the “heat”.  The rich creamy filling is there to cool off your palette and the chocolate on top just ties it all together.

 

Mexican Chocolate Layered Brownies
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Brownies
Ingredients
  • Brownies:
  • 1 C butter, melted
  • 2 C sugar
  • ⅔ C cocoa powder
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 C flour
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • 1¼ tsp cinnamon
  • ¼ cayenne pepper or chili powder
  • ¾ C Lidnt Chili Chocolate chopped
  • Filling:
  • 2/12 C powder sugar
  • 2 T butter, softened
  • 4 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 3T whipping cream
  • dash of salt
  • Chocolate Topping:
  • ⅓ C whipping cream
  • 1⅓ C semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • ⅓ C butter
  • 1 bar of Lidnt Chili Chocolate chopped for garnish
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Melt the cup of butter in a saucepan over a medium -low heat; DO NOT BOIL. Remove from the heat and let cool slightly. Put in the stand mixer, fitted with the paddle attachment.
  3. Add sugar, eggs, and vanilla and combine on low speed.
  4. Whisk together the cocoa, flour, cinnamon, cayenne pepper, salt and baking powder. Add to the mix already in the mixer bowl and mix until smooth. Stir in chili chocolate that you have chopped.
  5. Spread the batter in a 9x13 pan prepared with cooking spray and bake until toothpick in the middle come out fudge, about 20-30 mins Let the brownies cool completely.
  6. While the brownies cool, start by making the chocolate topping.
  7. Toss ⅓ C of whipping cream, 1⅓ cup semisweet chocolate chips and ⅓ cup butter into a medium saucepan. Heat ingredients over medium-high heat stirring constantly until everything is melted and combined. Set aside to cool.
  8. For the filling, In a medium mixing bowl or stand mixer bowl combined 2½ C powder sugar, 2 T softened butter, 4 oz softened cream cheese, and 3 T whipping cream. Beat the ingredients for 2-3 minutes or until combined.
  9. Once the brownies have cooled completely, spread the filling evenly over the top. Put the pan into the fridge and allow to set for about 20 mins.
  10. Once the filling has has a chance to set, pour the chocolate topping over the top and spread evenly. Sprinkle with the chili chocolate and put back in the fridge for at least an hour or until the chocolate topping has set.

I am Back!!

Well it has been couple months since I have posted on the blog. While I have been updating using Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, I haven’t actually posted to the blog.  Things in the last couple of months have been a little busy. As many of you know and some that don’t, I took a position in the company that I work for that required me to commute on a daily basis more that I was previously. It was a great opportunity to use my education(degree in nutrition) while staying with the company. I was happy but found that it took up so much of my time…too much time away from my baking. So after much thought I decided to return to my previous position. Doing so gave me more time to do what I love….bake! So enough about that…I am back and working on a new layout for the blog and of course trying new recipes and visiting more bakeries.

I have been baking the couple months, mostly trying out box mixes, recipes from some of the cookbooks that I got for my birthday and other fun recipes.  For my birthday my mom got an assortment of NoRA Cupcakes, an awesome bakery here in Middletown CT(www.noracupacke.com)and my mom and I made Christmas cookies, something we haven’t done in a while. Well here are a few pictures of what I have been up to the last couple of months:

2013-11-23 21.38.39

Birthday Gifts

 

Birthday Cupcakes from NoRA Cupcakes

Birthday Cupcakes from NoRA Cupcakes

 

Caramel Apple Cupcakes from Duncan Hines

Caramel Apple Cupcakes from Duncan Hines

Christmas Cookies

Christmas Cookies

Christmas Cookies

Christmas Cookies

Peanut Butter Cookie Dough Cookies from Love & Olive Oil

Peanut Butter Cookie Dough Cookies from Love & Olive Oil

Honey Banana Bread( adapted from Baked)

Honey Banana Bread( adapted from Baked)

So what is on the horizon….like I said earlier, I am working with my wonderful husband on a new layout for the blog and trying to get back into the swing of baking and posting regularly.   Thank you all for hanging in there with me. It has been a interesting couple of months but now I am ready to get back to business.