Archive for the ‘Dessert’ Category

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Fudgy Peanut Butter Cup Brownies

August 20, 2018

Simply put: these are amazing. You could eat them at room temperature, but I highly recommend chilling them first. This makes them extra fudgy and, in my humble opinion, perfect. They taste just like peanut butter cups.

20180722 PB Brownies 04

You will need:

  • 16 T salted butter, divided (6 T at room temperature)
  • 1 1/2 c sugar
  • 2 t vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 t instant espresso powder
  • 2/3 c unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 3 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 c flour
  • 1/2 c bittersweet chocolate chips
  • 2 T unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 c creamy peanut butter
  • 1/4 c powdered sugar

Then you will…

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Line an 8×8 baking pan with nonstick foil and lightly grease with nonstick spray.
  2. In a large saucepan, melt 12 tablespoons of the salted butter over medium heat.
  3. Whisk in the sugar, vanilla and espresso.
  4. Whisk in the cocoa powder.
  5. Remove the pan from the heat.
  6. Gradually whisk in the eggs until well combined.
  7. Stir in the flour until just combined.
  8. Stir in the chocolate chips.
  9. Pour and spread the batter into the prepared pan.
  10. Bake for 25 – 30 minutes, or until starting to set and slightly firm in the middle.
  11. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely on a wire rack.
  12. Using a stand or hand mixer, cream together the remaining 4 tablespoons of salted butter, the 2 tablespoons of unsalted butter, the peanut butter, and the powdered sugar until a smooth frosting forms.
  13. Spread on top of the cooled brownies.

20180722 PB Brownies 02

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Guava Puff Pastry Pockets

July 17, 2018

I first had pastelitos de guayaba (guava puff pastries) at a little market in San Antonio. Pastelitos are a popular Cuban dessert, and you often find them filled with sticky guava paste and sweet cream cheese. I made a variation without the cream cheese for a summer picnic this month. I loved how portable they were and how well they handled the summer heat. Another bonus: there are only two ingredients!

20180703 Guava Puffs 05

You will need:

  • 1 package frozen puff pastry sheets, defrosted
  • 1 package guava paste (you’ll need about 12 oz)

Then you will…

  1. Preheat your oven to 425 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment.
  2. Roll out each piece of puff pastry into a 12 inch by 12 inch square.
  3. Slice your guava paste and place on one sheet of the puff pastry. You want to space them to create twelve pockets of guava.
  4. Top with the remaining sheet of puff pastry. Cut into the twelve pieces.
  5. Use a fork to press the edges together.
  6. Make three small slices in the top of each piece to vent.
  7. Transfer to the prepared baking sheets.
  8. Bake until golden, about 20 minutes.
  9. Allow to cool on a wire rack for at least 10 minutes before eating.

20180703 Guava Puffs 01

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Salty Oat (Chip) Cookies

July 5, 2018

There is a tea house and cafe near my office that has “salty oat” cookies. I think they are the perfect treat: comforting and not too sweet. They are delicious with tea, coffee or cocoa. I set out recreate them, and this dough is awesome both with semisweet chocolate chip and without them. The last time I made them, I made half into cookie bars and used the other half of the dough to make frozen dough balls. Then I could pop a few cookies in the oven whenever we needed a quick treat!

20180608 Salty Oat Cookies 01

You will need:

  • 2 sticks salted butter, room temperature
  • 2 c brown sugar
  • 2 eggs, room temperature
  • 1/2 t baking powder
  • 1/2 t baking soda
  • 1 T vanilla extract
  • 2 c flour
  • 2 c old-fashioned oats
  • Optional: 1/2 c bittersweet chocolate chips

Then you will…

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper if making cookies. Line a 9×9 baking pan with foil and lightly grease with nonstick spray if making cookie bars.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, cream together the butter and brown sugar until well mixed and smooth.
  3. Mix in the eggs until light and fluffy.
  4. Mix in the baking powder, baking soda, and vanilla extract.
  5. Mix in the flour.
  6. Mix in the oats (and chips if using) until just combined.
  7. Drop spoonfuls of the dough for cookies or spread half of the batter in the baking pan for bars.
  8. Bake for 10-14 minutes for cookies, until turning golden and set around the edges.
  9. Bake for 30-40 minutes for bars, until golden and set in the middle.

20180608 Salty Oat Cookies 03

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Mocha Chip Ice Cream

June 25, 2018

20180531 Mocha Ice 02

I heart ice cream. I could eat it every day. D loves mocha drinks. He could drink them every day. This dessert combines those two delicious items into a creamy frozen treat. If you don’t have an ice cream maker, you can still make this in your freezer. Just put the mixture in your freezer, and then stir every hour for four to five hours until desired consistency.

You will need:

  • 1 c 2% milk
  • 3/4 c sugar
  • 3 T instant espresso powder
  • 3 T high quality, unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 c whipping cream
  • 2 t vanilla extract
  • 1/2 c mini semisweet chocolate chips

Then you will…

  1. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together everything but the mini chocolate chips.
  2. Freeze according to your ice cream maker’s directions. It will be a soft serve consistency at this point.
  3. Stir in the mini chocolate chips and transfer to a freezer-safe container.
  4. Freeze an additional hour or two until it reaches your desired consistency.

20180531 Mocha Ice 01

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Strawberries n’ Yogurt Popsicles

June 9, 2018

Our teething toddler recently discovered popsicles and all their cool yumminess. We found a mini popsicle mold online that makes small popsicles that are just the right size for his cute little hands and mouth. He loves strawberries and yogurt, so we let that inspire these popsicles.

20180601 Strawberry Popsicles

You will need:

  • 16 oz fresh strawberries, hulled
  • 1 c vanilla yogurt (I recommend a thicker yogurt like Greek or Icelandic skyr)
  • 4 T honey or maple syrup
  • 1/2 t lime juice
  • 1/2 t vanilla extract

Then you will…

  1. Puree all the ingredients in a blender until smooth.
  2. Pour into popsicle molds.
  3. Freeze overnight.
  4. Enjoy in the sunshine.
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Citrus Cream Cheese Cake

May 18, 2018

Lemon and limes are extra special as the weather moves from winter to spring and summer. They are bright and wonderful additions to your dishes. The cake itself reminds me of a pound cake, and you get lots of citrus sunshine through the glaze in particular.

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You will need:

  • 1 c + 1 T unsalted butter, at room temperature (divided)
  • 8 oz reduced fat cream cheese (or regular), at room temperature
  • 2 c sugar
  • 4 eggs, at room temperature
  • 2 t vanilla extract
  • 2 limes, zested and juiced (divided)
  • 2 lemons, zested and juiced (divided)
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 c all purpose flour
  • 1 c whole wheat flour
  • 1 3/4 c confectioners’ sugar

Then you will…

  1. Preheat your oven to 325 degrees. Prepare a Bundt pan or cake pan by greasing with a nonstick cooking spray.
  2. Beat together 1 cup of the butter and the cream cheese until smooth, light and fluffy.
  3. Add the eggs and sugar. Beat until well combined with the butter-cream cheese mixture.
  4. Beat in the vanilla, half of the citrus zests, and a pinch of salt.
  5. Mix in the flours until just combined.
  6. Spread the batter into the prepared pan and bake until a toothpick in the center comes out clean, about 45 to 60 minutes.
  7. Allow to cool 10 minutes before removing from the pan.
  8. In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the confectioners’ sugar with the remaining of the citrus zests and juices until smooth.
  9. Melt the remaining tablespoon of butter and whisk into the glaze.
  10. Drizzle over the top of the cake until you have as much as makes you and your taste buds happy.
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Cinnamon Brown Sugar Cookie Bars

May 4, 2018

These will not last long in your house. They have a gooey center and smell amazing while baking. Hope you enjoy them as much as we did! If you want extra cinnamon goodness, sprinkle some cinnamon sugar on top as well.

You will need:

  • 1/2 c unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 c brown sugar
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 1/2 t vanilla extract
  • 1 T + 1 t ground cinnamon
  • 1 t baking powder
  • 1/4 t baking soda
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 3/4 c all purpose flour

Then you will…

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Line an 8×8 baking pan with foil and grease with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. In a medium mixing bowl, combine the melted butter with the brown sugar, eggs, and vanilla.
  3. Mix in the cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda and a pinch of salt.
  4. Mix in the flour until combined.
  5. Spread in the prepared baking pan.
  6. Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until the center is no longer jiggly.
  7. Allow to cool and set for at least 10 minutes before removing from the pan.
  8. Finish cooling on a wire rack.

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