Tag Archives: nuts

Baklava Bread

This easy baklava recipe combines traditional baklava with pull-apart bread.  You’ll love how easy this baklava bread recipe comes together!

bakla-bread-6

This month, my beloved sister has me drooling all over myself, and feeling, quite frankly, pea green with envy that I didn’t come up with this recipe myself.

I mean, just read on and see what I mean!  Turning it over to Em now!

*****

My husband is working this weekend so I’ve been killing time by playing this game of solitaire where you eat an entire box of Wheat Thins by yourself.

Without any kids to drive me insane, I’m left to my own devices when my husband isn’t around.  As a general rule I like to tell myself that I’m going to get some shopping done, do a little baking, clean the apartment, go to the gym, etc., etc., etc. but then I turn on the TV as “background noise” which results in my sitting on the couch all day eating crackers and binging on Netflix.

It’s okay though, as long as I line all the remotes up in a parallel line on the coffee table before my husband gets home, he doesn’t know that I didn’t clean…or I don’t know, maybe he does but chooses his battles wisely.

Baklava Bread from JensFavoriteCookies.com - pull apart bread with a sweet nutty filling and honey syrup drizzle.

That’s not the point.

The point is that this weekend, I actually DID something that I told myself I would and that was to bake…leading me to a new problem: how many calories does it burn to eat an entire loaf of this Bakla-bread I made?

Baklava Bread from JensFavoriteCookies.com - pull apart bread with a sweet nutty filling and honey syrup drizzle.Baklava Bread from JensFavoriteCookies.com - pull apart bread with a sweet nutty filling and honey syrup drizzle.

The bigger problem is that this recipe has effectively turned me into a monster.  You know how people eat with their eyes first?  Well, I sort of visually assaulted this bread before I ate it and it was really inappropriate.

Where that’s concerned though, I think most breads ask for the abuse and I’m just the kind of girl who isn’t afraid to make it uncomfortable.

Ultimately, this bread came out the victor because while I won the battle of eating the entire loaf, the bread won the war of making me want to die for having done so.  As I recovered on the couch, my husband walked in to find a messy kitchen, an apartment that smelled like heaven and nothing for him to eat.

Baklava Bread from JensFavoriteCookies.com - pull apart bread with a sweet nutty filling and honey syrup drizzle.Baklava Bread from JensFavoriteCookies.com - pull apart bread with a sweet nutty filling and honey syrup drizzle.

Adding insult to injury, I was washing my dessert bread down with wine and binge-watching Netflix.  (Sorry fellas, I’m taken!)

 

Want more?  Try some of Em’s other great creations!

cheese-bacon-bitespesto-almonds-7easy-caramel-cake-recipes

 

 

Baklava Bread
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Pull-apart bread with a sweet and nutty filling, topped with honey syrup.
Author:
Recipe type: Bread
Ingredients
DOUGH:
  • 3 tablespoons warm water (105-115F)
  • 2¼ teaspoons active dry yeast
  • ½ teaspoon sugar
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • ⅓ cup milk
  • 3 cups flour
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
FILLING:
  • 1 Cup sugar
  • 2 ½ tsp. ground cinnamon
  • ½ Cup pistachios, chopped
  • ½ Cup walnuts, chopped
  • ¼ Cup almonds, sliced
  • Zest of ¼ lemon
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • ½ tsp. vanilla extract
  • ½ Cup butter, melted
HONEY SYRUP:
  • ½ Cup honey
  • ½ Cup water
  • Pinch of salt
Instructions
  1. Activate the Yeast: in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, combine water, yeast, and sugar. Stir gently and briefly. Let the mixture stand until foamy (about 5 minutes).
  2. Make the Dough: In a small saucepan, combine the butter and milk. Place over medium heat and cook until butter is just melted. Remove from heat and let cool to approx. 120 degrees.
  3. In a large bowl, whisk together 2 Cups of flour, the sugar and salt. Pour dry mixture into activated yeast. Add milk mixture, eggs, and vanilla. Stir together on low for about 2 minutes, then increast speed to medium and mix until everything is well incorporated (the eggs tend to hold the process up, just keep mixing, they’ll join in eventually). Add the remaining cup of flour and little at a time. After flour is incorporated, knead for about 3 minutes.
  4. Place the dough in a large, greased bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Let rest in a warm place until dough has doubled (approx. 45 minutes). While dough is resting, prep the filling and honey syrup.
  5. Filling: In a large bowl, stir together the sugar and cinnamon and set aside.
  6. In the bowl of a food processor, combine all the nuts, lemon zest, and salt and process until nuts are ground fine. Add the vanilla extract and process until the mixture forms large, moist clumps. Set the mixture aside.
  7. Honey Syrup: In a small saucepan, combine the honey, water, and salt. Bring to a boil then reduce to a medium-low heat and simmer, stirring occasionally until the mixture reduces by ⅓. Let syrup cool slightly then transfer to a jar or bowl to cool further.
  8. When the dough is raised, turn it out onto a floured surface, gently flatten it with your fingers. Roll the dough out with a rolling pin to approx. 20 x 12 inches. Cover dough with the melted butter, sprinkle with the sugar/cinnamon mixture, crumble the nut mixture as evenly as possible.
  9. Cut the dough vertically into six even strips, stack the strips on top of one another. Cut the stacked strips into 6 square (ish) pieces and layer them, standing upright, in a loaf pan. Cover the pan with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place for about 45 minutes (until dough is puffed and fills the pan).
  10. Preheat oven to 350. Bake 30-40 minutes or until the top of the bread is deep, golden brown. Allow bread to cool in pan about 20 minutes. Drizzle honey syrup over the top and serve.

 

White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies

This macadamia nut cookies recipes is perfect for every day, and great for entertaining.  Make these white chocolate macadamia nut cookies oversized to impress!

White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies from JensFavoriteCookies.com - they're oversized and fabulous!Our niece, CindyLouWho, had her 11th birthday recently.

She wrote a birthday list, which her father reports had several revisions.  It turns out the original list was a little extravagant.   Once she had the list perfected, she sent it to the entire family in a group text message.

The list included such ideas as a soft blanket, a gift card to the local frozen yogurt shop, and goldfish.  That last idea came with this very important parenthetical clarification:  “crackers, NOT A REAL FISH!”  Believe me when I tell you I was seriously tempted to get her a real fish, just to mess with her.

That’s the kind of aunt I am.

I told her I would love to make her a batch of cookies for her birthday, in any flavor she could dream up.  A couple days later, she sent me a text message with her choice… White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies.  This girl has good taste in cookies.

White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies from JensFavoriteCookies.com - they're oversized and fabulous!

CindyLouWho used to spend at least one weekend a month at our house.  We loved it.  She fit right in with our family.  And, since the Hippie Chick has long been lamenting that we never deigned to give her a sister, this cousin time gave her a brief and periodic approximation of what life with a sister might be like.

I love that they enjoy each other’s company so much.  They had some great times together, playing video games, jumping on the trampoline, drawing pictures on the white board, and even sometimes baking cookies.

I guess you know how I feel about cookies!

White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies from JensFavoriteCookies.com - they're oversized and fabulous!White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies from JensFavoriteCookies.com - they're oversized and fabulous!

Costco sells these oversized White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies, (everything Costco sells is oversized) and since that’s what I guess CindyLouWho was thinking of when she requested these, I made my cookies extra large too.

If you don’t want yours so large, just adjust the baking time down.  Watch for them to get slightly brown all over, especially the edges.

And then enjoy a cookie or two while you make  your own extravagant birthday list!

 

Want more?  Check out these white chocolate recipes!

White-chocolate-5White Chocolate
Cookies
sconesCoconut White
Chocolate Scones
strawberry krispies thumbStrawberry White
Chocolate Krispies

 

White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies
 
Cook time
Total time
 
A basic drop cookie with white chocolate chips and macadamia nuts.
Author:
Recipe type: Cookies
Serves: 24
Ingredients
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2¾ cup flour
  • ½ cup macadamia nuts
  • 1 cup white chocolate chips
Instructions
  1. Cream butter and sugars. Add eggs and vanilla and mix well.
  2. Add salt, soda, and flour and mix until combined.
  3. Fold in nuts and white chips. Wrap dough tightly in plastic and chill for about 1 hour.
  4. Form dough into about 24 extra large cookies. *(see note) Place on baking sheet, leaving plenty of space for cookies to spread.
  5. Bake at 350F for 12-14 minutes, until lightly brown on top. Let sit on baking sheet for 1-2 minutes before removing to a cooling rack.
Notes
To create the cookie size, I used my size 60 cookie scoop, and rolled two scoops together into one large cookies.

 

Kitchen Sink Cookies

You’ll love this recipe for chocolate chip oatmeal cookies, because it has lots of add-ins!  It has everything in it, but the kitchen sink!

Kitchen Sink Cookies from JensFavoriteCookies  -  These chocolate chip oatmeal cookies have everything but the kitchen sink in them!Robb and I decided that we are going to spend this summer making some much needed repairs on our house.

We’ve saved up money for a new roof, a new furnace, air conditioning, and a new garage door, and if we’re lucky, maybe a family vacation.

What we did not save money for is a new mattress.  I figured if my mattress could survive 18 years, it could survive one more.  The mattress recently showed it’s first real and concrete sign of aging, namely springs sticking out the side.  Sooooo classy.

Truth be told, I probably would never have noticed the spring. One morning, when I sat up to get out of bed, the spring sliced me nearly the entire length of my right calf.

It was adorable.

I was pretty cranky about it, and complained to Robb when he got home from work that day.  He quickly snipped off the spring to keep it from injuring anyone else, and we went back to thinking the mattress was going to have to last another year.

Kitchen Sink Cookies from JensFavoriteCookies  -  These chocolate chip oatmeal cookies have everything but the kitchen sink in them!

You know me, I complained as loud as I could to anyone who would listen.  I’m super charming that way.  And guess who listened?  One totally awesome friend.  A few days after I had a fit about it, she bought me a mattress and had it delivered!

Who does that?!

So I laid down on my new, soft, comfy mattress, and you know what I thought about?  Chocolate chip cookies.  Because eating chocolate chip cookies is like going home, or like wrapping up in your favorite blanket, or laying on a really cushy bed.   Continue reading “Kitchen Sink Cookies” »

Caramel Corn Snack Mix

The best caramel corn recipe can be used on more than just popcorn!  And pecans and cereal for a fun snack mix!

Caramel Corn Snack Mix from JensFavoriteCookies.com - this mix includes cereal and pecans for a delicious snack!

I burned myself making this popcorn for you.

Oh, how I sacrifice for my craft!

Let’s just say, when this candy comes off the stove it is very very hot.  Be forewarned. Was it worth it?  Yes.  Yes, it was.  Because caramel corn is good, but caramel corn plus chex and pecans is great.  Fantastic.  Amazing, even.

And speaking of sacrifice… do you know how hard it is to make this gorgeous, crunchy caramel and then NOT eat it immediately?  I promised my family I would bring snacks to the family get together this month, so into a lidded container this whole batch went.

*sniff*  *wipes tear*

Caramel Corn Snack Mix from JensFavoriteCookies.com - this mix includes cereal and pecans for a delicious snack!

Here’s a little insight into my life as a dessert blogger.  When my kids come home from school/work/friends/misc. activities, they say something like, “Mmm, it smells like…” insert something here like “peanut butter” or “caramel” or “cookies.”  This is immediately followed by, “Can I have some?”

Continue reading “Caramel Corn Snack Mix” »

Peanut Butter Granola Bites

This shop is part of a social shopper marketing insight campaign with Pollinate Media Group™ and Dr. Pepper Snapple Group but all my opinions are my own. #pmedia #TENways  http://my-disclosur.es/OBsstV

Peanut Butter Granola Bites from JensFavoriteCookies.com  -  packed with protein, dried fruits, and nuts.Robb and I have been having this disagreement lately.

It all started when I decided to make some healthier eating choices.  The truth is, I found the new rules to be kind of a drastic change from the old ones, and really difficult to stick to.  So, I came up with a brilliant plan…

Half-measures.

I figured I could have a weaning-off period, a period during which I don’t completely give myself to the new lifestyle with wreckless abandon, but I start moving in that direction by getting halfway there.  Robb has always been a black-and-white kind of guy, so the whole idea of half measures makes him nuts.

He says I should just do it, or not do it.  Half measure are for wimps.

To each his own, I guess, my half measures have been working out great for me.

Peanut Butter Granola Bites from JensFavoriteCookies.com  -  packed with protein, dried fruits, and nuts.

One of my alternatives to junk-food snacking this season is these Granola Bites.  There is still enough sweetness in them to make them really fun and delicious, while packing a protein punch that keeps the cravings at bay. Continue reading “Peanut Butter Granola Bites” »

Linzer Cookies

Linzer Cookies Recipes; These cookies use ground almonds and plum jelly for a lovely flavor.  Try this linzer cookies recipes this season.

linzer-cookiesIt never occurred to me to have a favorite jam or jelly.  I just like them all.  Strawberry, raspberry, apricot, plum… I like them all.

My mom’s favorite is plum jam, and since grandma has a plum tree, I’ve made jam a couple times.  I’m not going to lie, it’s fantastic stuff.  Plus it’s easy as pie to make, because you don’t have to peel the fruit, you put it in the jam with skins on.

Then there is my diligent and hard working sister-in-law.  She made plum jelly this year (no fruit) which is far more difficult.  You have to cook it down and strain it before you can even turn it into jelly.  “Why are you doing all this work?” I asked her.  “Because I don’t like jam.”

Not that I blame her, I guess we all have our quirky little food preferences that we will go to great lengths to work around.

She gave me a jar of the most beautiful dark and flavorful plum jelly you’ve ever seen.  It’s tart, full of flavor, and frankly, tastes fantastic with these almond Linzers.  I debated about parting with it but finally decided the cookies were worth it. Linzer Cookies from Jen's Favorite Cookies It’s still cookie week, by the way.  I hope you’ve been checking in and enjoying all the fantastic cookie recipes we’ve created for you.  Let’s have a quick recap, shall we?

Monday I shared Eggnog Cookies and told you all about the fun giveaway.  Have you entered yet?  You totally should.  There are a mega ton of ways to enter.  Take your pick! Continue reading “Linzer Cookies” »

Dark Chocolate Coconut Muddy Buddies

This post is part of a social shopper marketing insight campaign with Pollinate Media Group®, PEOPLE Magazine & Hershey’s, but all my opinions are my own. #HersheysPeople #pmedia http://cmp.ly/3/8vNxcO

dk-choc-muddy-buddy-5True story:  A ton of my friends tell me Halloween is their favorite holiday.  But me?  Not so much.

In fact, I kind of hate Halloween.  I hate spending money on candy and coming up with costumes for my kids, and dealing with candy wrappers all over the house.

I do like passing out candy, though.  And I like the decorations.  But that’s about it.

It seems like Halloween is always hectic.  Is that just me?  Between the school parties for the kids, and trying to get everyone into their costumes, and get some actual dinner in them, and the trick-or-treating, and visiting the grandparents, and passing out candy… there is just a lot to do.  It’s always a busy night.

I mean, let’s face it, sometimes a girl needs a break.

Let me be more specific:  Sometimes, on Halloween, a mom needs 10 minutes to herself, so she doesn’t lose her cool.  We all know what that looks like, and it ain’t pretty.  It might be the scariest part of Halloween, actually.

dk-choc-muddy-buddy-1

Here’s what you do…   Continue reading “Dark Chocolate Coconut Muddy Buddies” »

German Chocolate Skillet Cake

German Chocolate Skillet Cake; This chocolate cake is made in a skillet and topped with coconut pecan frosting.  You’ll love this German Chocolate Skillet Cake!

German Chocolate Skillet CakeI remember, there was a time when I didn’t fully appreciate a good cast iron skillet.

I’m pretty sure that when Robb and I first got married, he brought a very small (maybe 6-inch?) cast iron skillet into the marriage.  Having no previous experience with cast iron, I never used it, and I’m pretty sure I got rid of it some time ago.

What was I thinking?  Do you have any idea what I would give to have that little skillet back now?

My awesome brother gave me a brand new 12-inch skillet as a gift recently.  I was so excited to get it seasoned and start using it.  I couldn’t decide what to make in it first!

I finally decided on this skillet cake.  I have always wanted to make skillet cakes, brownies, and cookies, but never had a skillet that could go in the oven.

Why didn’t I just go buy one?  I have no idea.  Sad, but true.

German Chocolate Skillet Cake

My one disappointment with this cake was the frosting.

I love, and I do mean luuuuuuvve this coconut-pecan frosting.  It’s basically one of the seven wonders of the world.  It’s right next to the Taj Mahal in beauty, no lie.

The problem was that this recipe didn’t quite make enough for my taste.  It’s probably plenty for the average person, but I have a major sweet tooth, and frankly, the “more frosting the merrier” is the motto of my dessert-loving life.

German Chocolate Skillet CakeGerman Chocolate Skillet Cake

So, if you are like me, go ahead and double this frosting recipe.  That way you can get it all the way to the edges, so you can be sure that every bite of cake comes with a generous bite of this caramel-y nutty piece of heaven.

More simple and delicious cakes you might enjoy:

almond buttermilk cake thumbAlmond Buttermilk
Cake
Chocoholic CakeIntense Dark
Chocolate Cake
Sheet Cake and Cherry ToppingChoc Sheet Cake with
Warm Cherry Topping

 

 

Lightly adapted from My Baking Addiction

3.0 from 2 reviews
German Chocolate Skillet Cake
 
Cook time
Total time
 
A chocolate cake cooked in a cast iron skillet and topped with coconut pecan frosting.
Author:
Recipe type: Cake
Serves: 8
Ingredients
CAKE:
  • ¼ cup butter
  • 4 oz. unsweetened chocolate
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil or canola oil
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 cup flour
FROSTING:
  • ½ cup sweetened condensed milk
  • ¼ cup butter
  • 1 egg yolk
  • ½ cup pecans
  • ½ cup shredded coconut
Instructions
  1. For the cake: Coarsely chop chocolate and place in a microwave safe bowl with butter. Melt in the microwave in 30-second intervals, stirring between each.
  2. Once melted, add Sugar, oil and eggs to the chocolate mixture, and mix well. Add salt and soda and mix well. Add flour and mix until combined.
  3. Spread mixture evenly in a 12-inch cast iron skillet. Bake at 350 for about 25 minutes.
  4. For the frosting: combine milk, butter, and egg yolk in a sauce pan. Cook over medium high heat, stirring constantly, until mixture is thick and starts to darken in color. (about 5 minutes)
  5. Stir in pecans and coconut. Spread over cake while still warm.

 If you enjoy this recipe, you might also enjoy:

German Chocolate Cheesecake from Willow Bird Baking
German Chocolate Sandwich Cookies from Chocolate Moosey
German Chocolate Cake Donuts from Tina’s Chic Corner

Baked Coconut Almond Oatmeal Cups

Recipe for baked oatmeal;  This delicious baked oatmeal recipe makes 12 individual cups, and uses almonds and coconut.  Coconut baked oatmeal is the best!

Baked-coconut-almond-oatmeal-8I’ve been feeling a touch stressed about the coming school year.  All three of my kids will be going to brand new schools this year, and I don’t exactly know what to expect.  I’m one of those people who prefers to know what I’m getting into, so it’s making me really uncomfortable.

I’m also realizing that like it or not, this family will need to be morning people.  The kids and Robb all need to be out the door by 7:00, and for a woman who prefers to get up around 8:00 or 8:30, this is a real problem.

I’ve been preparing everyone by telling them that breakfast will be served at 6:30, and they are to be dressed and at the table by that time.  Whether or not that will actually happen is up for debate.

I realize that this means I will need to be up by 6:00 at the latest, and depending on what I’m serving for breakfast, maybe even sooner.  This idea does NOT thrill me.  I can do it… I just don’t want to.

In the meantime, I am auditioning new recipes for our early morning breakfast line up, and I think I found a winner in this one.

Baked-coconut-almond-oatmeal-1

Can I make a confession?  I don’t like oatmeal.  Never have. Continue reading “Baked Coconut Almond Oatmeal Cups” »

Pistachio Caramel Cookies & St. Patrick’s Collection

Recipe for pistachio cookies with caramel centers;  These pudding cookies are soft, green, and easy to make.

pistachio cookiesI have this friend, we’ve known each other since Nixon was in office.

Well, maybe not Nixon, but you get the idea.

Anyway, I love her dearly, but she has terrible taste in ice cream.  Sometimes we go to this local ice cream place together.  It’s the kind of place where the small sundae is enough to feed two people, and the ice cream and toppings are dripping out over the sides of the glass.  The food there is nothing to write home about, but the ice cream is memorable.

I always get peppermint ice cream with hot fudge, because it’s the obvious best tasting choice.  I can’t think of one thing I like better than hot fudge, unless it’s hot fudge with peppermint ice cream.  It’s the stuff dreams are made of.

But my friend always gets pistachio ice cream with caramel sauce.

Actually, now that I think about it, it does sound pretty good.  Just nowhere near as good as peppermint and hot fudge.

Even though she is wrong about this important topic, she is one of my oldest and loyal-est friends, so these cookies are totally for her.

pistachio cookies

In addition to loving my old friends, I’m loving my new friends too.  One super cool thing about being a rich and famous food blogger is meeting people from all over the country.

Today, I joined up with some of my best bloggy friends to bring you this super-duper awesome collection of St. Patrick’s Day recipes.  It’s radical, as we used to say when Nixon was in office.

I hope you’ll take a minute to look through all these fun recipes, and send some love to the bloggers who made them!

St. Patrick's Day Recipes

1. Key Lime Pound Cake by Joan at Chocolate Chocolate & More
2. Mini Banoffee Pie Tarts by Kelly at Kelly Bakes
3. Chocolate Bailey’s Mousse Tart from Nancy at Gotta Get Baked
4. Irish Carbomb Cupcakes from Susan at Girl in the Little Red Kitchen
5. Pistachio Caramel Cookies from Jen at Jen’s Favorite Cookies
6. Guinness Stout Mini Bundt Cake from Shanna at Pineapple and Coconut
7. Irish Cheese and Bacon Cheesecake with Walnut Crust by Carla at Chocolate Moosey
8. Bailey’s Irish Cream Cheese Trifle from Anita at Hungry Couple NYC
9. Key Lime Pie Ice Cream from Renee at Magnolia Days
10. Pistachio Mousse Cups from Kim at Cravings of a Lunatic
11. Irish Eggs Benedict from Isabelle Crumb Blog
12. St. Patrick’s Day Cookie Stack from Angie at Big Bears Wife
13. Guinness Chocolate Cake from Jen at Juanita’s Cocina
14. Irish Potato Oatmeal Bread from Sarah at What Smells So Good

Continue reading “Pistachio Caramel Cookies & St. Patrick’s Collection” »

Spicy Sweet Pecans

Spicy nuts with sugar; This recipe for sweet and spicy pecans is a simple and tasty holiday snack.

sweet pecansThese nuts are a metaphor for my life.

I don’t know if you know this about me, but I have kind of a strong personality.  I prefer to see myself as sweet, gentle, kind, and thoughtful.  In recent years, I have realized that some people disagree.

For example, here are some things I have {mistakenly} been called:
Opinionated.
Assertive.
Pushy.
The meanest woman in the church congregation.
Controlling.

Well, that last one might be true.

Even my parents have said that, as a baby, I would scream inconsolably for hours every night, and that I would utterly refuse to sleep if there was anything at all going on in the house.
candied nuts

I like to think that it’s my fiery personality that explains my love of spicy foods.  I actually really really enjoy when the food is so spicy, it burns your lips and the inside of your mouth and throat.  Mmmmm… It’s one of my favorite things.

On the other hand, I’m also known to have something of a sweet tooth.  I mix the Kool-Aid kind of heavy on the sugar, and I like to frost the brownies.  And, well let’s face it, I have a dessert blog.  All this is because I am so sweet and friendly and thoughtful.  I’ve also been called “kind” on occasion.

Look, I’m working on the sweet side of my personality.  I’ve become a hopeless optimist, I work hard not to speak ill of others {it’s a work in progress!}, and love finding ways to be a better friend.  I deserve a little sugar on my nuts.

spicy nuts

And thus, when I was deciding exactly how to make these magical metaphorical pecans, there was really only one choice.

Spicy AND Sweet.

And toasted, of course, because toasted nuts are obviously the very high-end best.

These pecans turned out basically just like me… sugar and spice and everything nice.  I can almost guarantee that the strong-personality types out there will love these.  And the gentle personality types?  Well, they’ll love these too.

Because I said so.

Spicy Roasted Chickpeas recipeSpicy Roasted
Chickpeas
Mustard PretzelsMustard
Pretzels
Pecan SandiesPecan
Sandies

 

Continue reading “Spicy Sweet Pecans” »

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cake

birthday cakeWith cake.  I mean, that’s how everyone celebrates birthdays and anniversaries, isn’t it?

The Hippie Chick said to me, “It’s your blog-iversary?  It’s been one year?”

No.  It’s been three years.  Three amazing years.

Scratch that.  It’s been two boring, hobby-ish, I’ll-do-it-when-I-feel-like-it years, and one stunning, indescribably mind-blowing, crazy exciting year.

Shall I demonstrate?
Three years ago:  Giant Ginger Cookies
Two years ago: Chocolate Waffle Iron Cookies
One year ago: Cranberry Orange Chocolate Chip Muffins

I probably shouldn’t even link to that old stuff, it’s so embarrassingly bad.

Oatmeal chocolate cake

But since this last year has been so much fun, I figured it was only fitting to celebrate with my favorite cake of all time.  And let me tell you, it takes a lot to eclipse the wonders of Red Velvet Cake.

When my Mom found this recipe several years ago, it became an instant classic in our family.  We eat this for about half of the years birthday celebrations.

Maybe more.

chocolate oat cake recipe

My kids were obviously thrilled that I baked this cake for no apparent reason at all.  I told them they could have a piece, and they rewarded me by turning the cake into dog bait.  That’s code for they left the cake on the table and the dog jumped up and licked the frosting off.

I’m not sure whether to be more angry at the kids or the dog.

Here’s to more years of growth, and friendships, and baked goods with chocolate chips. Continue reading “Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cake” »

Almond Shortbread Cookies

shortbread recipePeople ask me all the time, “Jen, is it weird having a 15 year old, when you yourself are only 25?”

Well, yes it is, now that you mention it.

You know what else is weird?  How many times I’ve turned 25.  I mean my friends keep getting older every year, and I just keep staying 25.  *ahem*

At my most recent 25th birthday (which was just a few weeks ago), my name-sharing BFF Jen gave me these adorable as heck cupcake-shaped cookie cutters.  I mean, seriously… how cute are these?!

She also gave me an actual cupcake.  From One Sweet Slice.  {a.k.a. Heaven}  If you haven’t heard of them, One Sweet Slice is a local cupcake bakery that not too long ago won an episode of Cupcake Wars.  They claim to have award-winning cupcakes, brownies, and other stuff.

They claim correctly.  It’s lucky I don’t live closer to this place.  Seriously.

The only problem I have now is deciding what kind of cookie dough to turn into cupcake-shaped cookies.  Which is not a real problem at all.

I’ve done regular sugar cookies.  And chocolate sugar cookies.  And oatmeal cut-out cookies.  And more recently, pumpkin sugar cookies.  I had this brilliant idea to make peanut butter sugar cookies with chocolate frosting to celebrate my birthday.

shortbread cookies

This resulted in the single ugliest cookie I have ever seen in my life.  EPIC Failure.

I spent a few days licking my wounds about it, too, before I decided to make something that will really keep it’s shape, so I can see the cute cupcake… Shortbread Cookies.

This resulted in the second ugliest cookie I have ever seen in my life.  ANOTHER epic failure.

I really wish I could describe with words what I suspect the look on my face is describing right now.  What’s the word? Frustration?  Anger?  Barely contained psychotic rage?  Let’s just say I was NOT. HAPPY.

Continue reading “Almond Shortbread Cookies” »

Date Nut No-Bake Cookies

No bake nut cookieI just heard my kid say the words, “We’ve got to get mom off the computer.”

{pause for effect}

This is the same kid who said, “Blogging is a nerdy woman thing to do.”

He’s not related to me, I swear.  He didn’t spring from my belly, grow up in my house, and throw countless purple-face, sweating and screaming tantrums, only to disrespect me after FIFTEEN YEARS of patience, dedication, sacrifice, and wise parenting.  MY kid would never do that.

Continue reading “Date Nut No-Bake Cookies” »

Apricot Nut Cookies

A recipe for a cookie with apricots and nuts, covered with almond icing.

Source:  Giada de Laurentiis and Food Network… always an amazing source.

Yield: about 2 dozen cookies

It’s been a while since I made a fruity cookie, and this one, frankly, hit the spot.  Although, I have to admit, these did not turn out nearly as beautiful as Giada’s did, but that’s not her fault.  I don’t think she frosted hers in this lovely shade of blue, either.  I guess that’s what makes the two of us different.  Right?

I was excited to have a reason to make a cookie with nuts in it.  These use both slivered almonds and pine nuts.  It has been a long time since I have eaten pine nuts.  They are certainly not the cheapest nut in the store, but worth every penny for that wonderful piney flavor!

Continue reading “Apricot Nut Cookies” »

Peach Oatmeal Cookies

A recipe for a crumbly, oaty peach cookie with white chocolate and walnuts, similar to peach cobbler.  Easily substitute other fruits.

Source: Food Network, this time courtesy of Sunny Anderson.

Yield: About 3 dozen cookies

I bought a bag of peaches at the grocery store this week.  I don’t know what I was expecting, after all, it is June and peaches aren’t really in season for another 2-3 months.  But I love peaches.  They are my favorite fruit.  So I broke down and bought a 2 lb. bag.  Now I don’t know what to do with them.

I discovered recently, thanks to Stat Counter, that several people found my site by searching for “fruit flavored cookies” and that got me thinking that there aren’t enough fruity cookies on this blog.  I have a tendency to be partial to chocolate.  (Can you blame me?)  So I went looking for some peach cookie recipes to try.  There were unfortunately very few available.

I did find this one from Sunny Anderson, host of Food Network’s Cooking For Real. I really like the show, and her style of cooking.  I did have some problems with the recipe, but nothing that will keep me from making it again!

Continue reading “Peach Oatmeal Cookies” »

Kitchen Sink Cookies

A recipe for a classic cookie with a little bit of everything in it!

Source: Karl Wilson, a friend and neighbor.

Yield: about 4-5 dozen cookies

I should call this post “A Failed Experiment in Kitchen Sink Cookies.” They did not turn out at all like I wanted. I was supremely disappointed.

Our neighbor, Karl, makes these cookies, and I first fell in love with them when his wife gave me one. They are possibly the best cookies I have ever had. They have a little bit of everything in them. Karl didn’t have a name for them, or a recipe, for that matter, so, consequently, I have dubbed them the Kitchen Sink Cookie.