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Chocolate Blackberry Cream Cookies

chocolate-blackberry-cream-cookies (4 of 5)

It is just not that difficult to come up with a reason to purchase berries.  I’m never quite sure what to do with them, but it never takes me long to figure it out.

When I found this recipe, I was excited to have a good reason to purchase blackberries.  They sat in the fridge for a couple days before I got around to baking with them, and the kids kept asking me about them.  My son, the “fruitarian,” was going crazy with blackberry-desire!

The cookie itself is deceptively delicious.  Even if you don’t want to top your cookie with berries, consider making this cookie plain.  It is a super simple version of a chocolate crinkle, made with a devils food cake mix.  It can be mixed up very quickly, and comes out soft and fudgy and almost brownie-like.  YUM.  Since the dough was quite soft, I used my scoop to drop dough into a bowl of powdered sugar, and I was quite generous in coating it, so my fingers wouldn’t get too sticky.

chocolate-blackberry-cream-cookies-1Don’t get me wrong, I have no problem licking chocolate cookie dough off my fingers.  I just wanted to save myself for the blackberry cream frosting.

Sometimes I make this cookie without the powdered sugar, and that works great too. Either way, you’ll have a soft chocolatey cookie that makes a great base for the frosting.

chocolate-blackberry-cream-cookies (1 of 5)

I have honestly not baked with berries much.  The recipe on Your Cup of Cake calls for a blackberry puree, without actually mentioning how to make the puree, so I guessed.  I know there are other ways to make a puree, but this worked just fine and it was really easy.

I dumped a bunch of berries in a bowl, and  I used a fork to smash them a bit, and then I let them sit and macerate for maybe 10 minutes while I rolled the cookies in sugar and put them in the oven.

I then came back and smashed them some more.  The truth is, I am just way to lazy to strain this.  Plus, I don’t have a good strainer.  The only strainer I own has been used to clean the fish bowl, so I don’t have much desire to use it on my berries.

True story.  I figured it would be fine if my frosting had berry chunks in it.  Fine and dandy.

By the way, you won’t need nearly the berries you see pictured above. A small handful is enough, since you only need 3 tablespoons of puree. If you do end up with extra puree, cook it with sugar and water for a really delicious blackberry syrup!

chocolate-blackberry-cream-cookies-2I measured about 3 tablespoons of the non-strained berry puree, and mixed into my softened cream cheese and butter, and added powdered sugar until it was a nice, thick, frosting consistency.  I gently frosted my soft chocolate cookies, and topped them with a leftover berry, to make them look extra pretty.

And actually, if you’re into making things pretty, use a piping bag to pipe the frosting on. I was mostly into stuffing these in my face as fast a possible, so I used a knife to give the frosting a quick smear.

I think these would really impress at a gathering, so I definitely recommend them for entertaining!  Plus, since the cookies are made with a cake mix, they are one of the simpler recipes on this humble blog.  The only real problem was cleaning up all that powdered sugar!

My friends have some amazing berry-themed cookies this month too!  Check these out…

Raspberry Tarts by Tastes of Lizzy T
Olive Sables by Kelli’s Kitchen
Blueberry Lemon Cookies from Bake or Break
Chocolate Raspberry Oatmeal Cookies from Posed Perfection
Chocolate Blackberry Cream Cookies from Jen’s Favorite Cookies

chocolate-blackberry-cream-cookies (4 of 5)
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Chocolate Blackberry Cream Cookies

A recipe for a fudgy chocolate crinkle cookie topped with blackberry frosting.

Cook Time 8 minutes
Servings 2 dozen

Ingredients

Cookies:

  • 1 box devils food cake mix
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • powdered sugar for rolling

Frosting:

  • 4 ounces cream cheese softened
  • 4 tablespoons butter softened
  • 2-3 tablespoons blackberry puree
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • about 2 cups powdered sugar

Instructions

Cookies:

  1. Mix together cake mix, eggs, oil, and vanilla, mixing just until combined.

  2. Roll dough into balls, coat with powdered sugar. Place on baking sheet.

  3. Bake at 350F for 8-10 minutes. Remove to a cooling rack and let cool.

Frosting:

  1. Mix all frosting ingredients together. Adjust consistency by adding more powdered sugar to thicken, or more puree to thin.

  2. Generously frost cooled cookies. Top with a blackberry.

Eggnog Dip

Recipes that use eggnog;  This easy dip recipes uses eggs and nutmeg for an authentic eggnog flavor.

I was compensated by Safest Choice Eggs to create this eggnog recipe, but, as always, all opinions are my own.

Eggnog Dip from Jen's Favorite CookiesFunny thing about eggnog, people seem to love it or hate it, there are not many in between.

Growing up, my family would occasionally make a no-cook blender eggnog, which I always loved.   Now that I am an adult, there is something about watching raw eggs go in the blender and then get poured into my glass which is, shall we say, a little off-putting.

Raw eggs… Salmonella… ewww.

Recently, I discovered a solution to my problem.  One gorgeous product that ends the need for being squeamish at the idea of drinking raw eggs.  It’s the eggnog lovers dream come true.

The miracle product is… Davidson’s Safest Choice All-Natural Pasteurized Eggs.

That’s right, pasteurized eggs.  They have a water bath process which eliminates the salmonella and makes them totally safe to eat raw or undercooked.

Eggnog Dip from Jen's Favorite Cookies

As I am committed to only baking with items I can find in the grocery store, I feel the need to share this one piece of information.  Safest Choice Eggs can be found in regular grocery stores, but they are not yet in all parts of the country.  To find out whether you can get these eggs in your neck of the woods, go to their website and type in your zip code. Continue reading “Eggnog Dip” »

24 Zucchini Recipes

24 Zucchini Recipes;  Wondering what to do with all that zucchini?  Look no further!  Try these recipes for breads, desserts, breakfasts, dinners, and snacks made with zucchini!

zucchini-recipes

I missed Zucchini Day.  It just passed me right by.

My apologies, everyone!  I’m sure you were waiting with baited breath for the blogging celebration of this overabundant squash.

The truth is, I didn’t think of it initially because I don’t have squash in any variety in my garden this year.  But now, I have about a dozen baggies in my freezer, each with 2 cups of shredded zucchini, thanks to a friend.

If you haven’t already heard this story, and want to see the monster of a zucchini she brought me, you can do it all in this post about Zucchini Cookies.

Several of my friends have asked me for more zucchini recipes.

So, here I am.  I’ve put together an amazing collection of recipes that will be perfect for using your bounteous harvest.

 

Zucchini Breads:

carrot-zucchini-breadCarrot Zucchini Bread
from
Alida’s Kitchen
dbl-choc-zucchini-breadDouble Chocolate
Zucchini Bread from
Like Mother Like Daughter
8629415449_20a27e866cZucchini Bread with
Chocolate Streusel from
Beyond Frosting
zucchinipinebasketZucchini Pineapple
Mini Loaves from
Ricki Heller
nutella-zucchini-breadNutella Swirl Zucchini
Bread from The Girl
in the Little Red Kitchen
Double-Chocolate-Espresso-Zucchini-BreadChocolate Espresso Zucc-
hini Bread from Modern
Christian Homemaker

 

 

 

Zucchini Desserts:

Cinnamon-Frosted-Zucchini-Bars-BlogCinnamon Frosted
Zucchini Bars from
Julie’s Eats & Treats
chocolate-zucchini-cookies-5Chocolate Zucchini
Cookies from Jen’s
Favorite Cookies
choc-zucchini-cakeChocolate Zucchini
Cake from Chocolate
Chocolate and More
Chocolate-Zucchini-Beanie-Brownie-bChocolate Zucchini
Beanie Brownies from
PB and Peppers
choc-zucchini-cupcakesChocolate Zucchini
Cupcakes from
Alida’s Kitchen
Cinnamon-Swirl-Zucchini-Bundt-Cake-BLOGCinnamon Swirl Zucc-
hini Bundt Cake from
Julie’s Eats & Treats

 

 

Zucchini Breakfast:

zucchini-french-toastZucchini Bread French
Toast from
Spabettie
SONY DSCZucchini Fritters
from
Ricki Heller
SONY DSCZucchini Oatmeal
from
Ricki Heller
zucchini-wafflesChocolate Zucchini
Waffles from
Farm Fresh Feasts
cream-cheese-filled-carrot-zucchini-muffins-600-wmCream Cheese Carrot
Zucchini Muffins from
I Heart Eating
cherry-zucchini-muffinsCherry Zucchini
Crumb Muffins from
Spabettie

 

 

Zucchini Main Dishes and Snacks:

zucchini-lasagnaZucchini Lasagna
from Like
Mother Like Daughter
ham-pasta-with-zucchiniHam Pasta with
Zucchini from
Hungry Goddess
cheesy-zucchini-tart-recipe-11Cheesy Zucchini
Tart from
Roxana’s Home Baking
Green dip made with yogurt or sour cream, selective focus.Zucchini Hummus
from
The Culinary Life
Crispy-Baked-Ratatouille-Fries-7320Crispy Baked
Ratatouille Fries from
Chocolate Moosey
stuffing-bitesZucchini Stuffing
Bites from
Busy Vegetarian Mom

 

 

 

Independence Day Treats

4th of July recipes for you; This collection of dessert recipes is perfect for the 4th of July or any summer get together! Try these 4th of July recipes for yourself!

4th of July desertsI love a good holiday.  I love the comradery, the break from the daily grind, and most of all, the food.

Oh, the food!  Holiday food is the best, isn’t it?

Our family will be celebrating with camping, swimming, fireworks, and naturally, snacks.  Popcorn and cookies during fireworks, chips and candy with lunch, fruity beverages to quell the blazing heat.

I thought I would share some of my favorite Independence Day appropriate treats.  These will be either American themed, no-bake {because it’s hot!}, non-melting {because it’s hot!} or generally summery.  Hopefully there will be something here for everyone.

If not, consider finding more ideas by checking out what my friends have done.

Let’s dive in.

red-white-and-blue-trifle-4Berry Trifle lemon sugar cookies square3Lemon Sugar Cookies no bake dessertsNo-bake PB Bars

This Berry Trifle uses white cake, blueberries, and strawberry pudding, very Red, White & Blue
Nothing says summer like lemon, and these Lemon Sugar Cookies have a light flavor and won’t melt.
Need to feed a crowd fast?  Try the No-Bake, 5-ingredient, Peanut Butter No Bake Bars.

Kettle Corn is a perfect treat for snacking on during fireworks!
Root Beer is uniquely American, so these Root Beer Cookies are sure to please.
Use your fresh fruit to make this beautiful Fruit Pizza on a sugar cookie crust.

Coconut Oil Kettle Corn RecipeKettle Corn Root Beer CookiesRoot Beer Cookies fruit-pizza-3Fruit Pizza
oatmeal chocolate chipOatmeal CC Cookies grapefruit soda thumbGrapefruit Soda blueberry-buttermilk-muffins-5Blueberry Muffins

These Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies are the quintessential American cookie.
Grapefruit Soda is so refreshing on a warm summer day!
Blueberry Buttermilk Muffins are just classic, the sort of thing to remind you of home.

Whatever your plans this 4th of July, I hope you have fun and have amazing summer foods!

White Chocolate Cookies

Recipe for white chocolate cookies;  These white chocolate chip cookies are delicate and delicious, with just a hint of nutmeg.
White-chocolate-cookies

Do you ever wonder what white chocolate is?  I mean, we know what it’s not… and by that, I mean it’s NOT chocolate.  It doesn’t come from a cacao bean.

And have you noticed that you can buy cocoa powder, but you can’t buy white cocoa powder?  Doesn’t exist.

That’s because white chocolate is not chocolate at all.  It’s basically just candy.  It’s only called chocolate because it has cocoa butter in it.  Unless you buy the *ahem* less expensive variety, and then there’s little or no cocoa butter in it at all.

Not that it matters.  All I know is I like it.  White chocolate is yummy.   The puppy and I agree on this point.

I dropped a couple white chocolate chips on the floor, and he snarfed them right up.

White Chocolate Cookies | Jen's Favorite Cookies

Please allow me to throw in a few words of advice here, because these cookies are a little delicate, and my first dozen looked quite awful and un-photograph-able.

Key point number one: chill the dough a good long time.  These will absolutely not work at all without several hours of chilling.  The dough should be firm before you bake, and during baking, put the rest of the dough back in the fridge.

Key point number two:  make the cookies small-ish.  Mine were probably just less than a tablespoon.  They will turn out much better that way.  The larger cookies spread too much and the edges turned brown and ugly before the middle was done.

I hate that.

White-chocolate-chip-cookies

And last but not least, key point number three:  let the cookies sit on the baking sheet for 2-3 minutes before you move them to a cooling rack.  They just need to set up for a couple minutes or they turn to mush when you try to slide them off.

If you take a little care, you’ll end up with a really delicious, white-chocolatey cookie.

And maybe a few extra white chocolate chips to share with the dog.

sconesCoconut White Choc
Buttermilk Scones
Coconut cream cookie recipeCoconut Cream
Cookies
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Continue reading “White Chocolate Cookies” »

Chocolate Mint Cookie Bars

Recipe for chocolate mint cookies;  These chocolate cookie bars use chocolate mint candies to give them a great flavor!

Chocolate-MintYou guys?  I have a little weakness for this one.  You know I’m a confessed chocoholic, right?

And what is the best thing to pair with chocolate?  Well, yes, it might be peanut butter.  But besides that… it’s mint.  {You might remember my discussion about my love for peppermint and hot fudge here.}

Glorious, delicious, refreshing mint.

In my “other” life, I am a piano teacher.  And, to encourage kids to think I’m cool to motivate kids to practice, I keep a jar of candy next to the piano.  For some reason, many of them fish past the Tootsie Rolls and go straight for the mint patties.  They’re almost always the first thing to go.

That, and the blue Jolly Ranchers.

It was nothing short of a miracle that I found a handful of mint patties left to bake with.

Sorry, piano students.  They went to a good cause, I promise.

Chocolate Mint Cookie Bars | Jen's Favorite Cookies

I decided to throw together some last minute cookie bars, and I seriously considered a repeat of these fun Coconut Chocolate Chip Bars.  They were memorable, to say the least.

But my chocolate cravings got the best of me, and with the presence of cocoa powder, mint chocolate chips, AND mint patties in my pantry, the decision became a verrry easy one.

A little too easy, maybe.

Chocolate mint cookies

With a bar like this, you really need to let it cool all the way before cutting into it.  Not that I would blame you for scooping it piping hot out of the pan with a spoon and throwing it on top of a scoop of mint ice cream.  It’s probably what I would have done, had I any mint ice cream in my house at all.

Fortunately for me, I was able to find a good excuse to leave the house directly after pulling them out of the oven.  My kids know there is no eating before photographing, but it doesn’t stop them from circling like vultures.

Or devouring like vultures.

Or squawking like vultures.

chocolate mintPeppermint
Popcorn Bark
fudge with candy canesEasy Peppermint
Fudge
buttermilk cookiesChocolate
Frosted Cookies

Continue reading “Chocolate Mint Cookie Bars” »

Blackberry Cobbler

Delicious blackberry cobbler;  This cobbler recipe uses nuts and oats for the crust, and blackberries and sugar for the filling.  Top your blackberry cobbler with a spoonful of whipped cream!

blackberry-cobblerWhen I first started blogging seriously, one of the hardest things to get used to was that I had no one to talk to.  None of my “real life” friends cared much about blogging, and none of the cool bloggers out there were my friends.  Then, as I began making blog friends, it felt weird that I didn’t know any of them in “real life” and so we have digital relationships and do things like share pictures of food we ate alone by ourselves.

It could be a sign of mental illness, I’ve been told.

At any rate, I was grateful for those digital friendships, those body-less faces in profile pictures that would talk to me all day about page layouts and posting schedules, and recipe attribution and plugins.  Oh!  The plugins!  {I’m a confessed addict.  I’m trying to quit.}

My very first blogging buddy was Carla at Chocolate Moosey.  Carla and I connected on Twitter, and she has become on of my best friends.  As time has worn on, and I’ve made a few more blogging friends, Carla and I remain close.  I can’t imagine going more than a day or two without connecting with her in one of about 15 ways.  {We bloggers tend to be social media addicts, too.}

chocolatemoosey

Turns out, I’m not the only one who thinks Carla is awesome.  She has made lots of friends through social media and blogging.  Friends who can’t be there in person to wish her a Happy Birthday today.

Happy Birthday Carla!

And since Carla and I have never met, and in fact live 2000 miles apart, we have something of a non-traditional friendship, I guess.  So it’s fitting that I’m sharing a non-traditional birthday dessert, i.e. not cake.

Blackberry Cobbler | Jen's Favorite Cookies

You should know that it doesn’t bother me ONE BIT to have cobbler instead of cake.  In fact, I have had peach cobbler as my birthday cake many, many times, and it continues to be my favorite birthday cake.  My mom makes a mean peach cobbler, and my birthday is in the fall, right when peaches are in season.

However, this is May, and peaches just don’t exist today.  But blackberries do.  Lovely, luscious, gorgeous blackberries!  I bought the biggest Costco-sized box I could find, and made this cobbler twice.

cobbler recipe

I suggest checking out some of the other things Carla’s friends made for her virtual birthday party.  You won’t regret it!

Continue reading “Blackberry Cobbler” »

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cake

Recipe for chocolate peanut butter cake with peanut butter frosting;  This peanut butter chocolate cake is layered with peanut butter frosting and chocolate ganache.

peanut butter chocolate cakeThe Lizard is turning 16.

He’s incredibly anxious to start driving.  We probably talk about it every day.  I’m trying to see the upside of this situation, but I’m really not sure it’s worth the downside.

One of The Lizard’s finer qualities is that he is NOT a picky eater.  Hallelujah.  There had to be one in the family.  So when I asked him what kind of birthday cake he wanted, he had a hard time deciding.

Because he likes them all.

He finally settled on Chocolate Peanut Butter Cake, which is just fine with me.  My family’s love of chocolate and peanut butter is practically legend.

After days of considering exactly how to make this cake (I wanted the cake to have peanut butter in it, and not just the frosting), I realized I had a new problem…  how to photograph it.

chocolate peanut butter cake

Here’s the thing.  You can’t photograph a cake without slicing it and looking at the inside.  And putting candles on a cake with a slice missing seems really uncool.

I stewed and stewed about this for days.  I asked The Lizard his opinion, and surprise, surprise, he had none.  Robb, on the other hand, had a brilliant idea.

Well, HE thought it was brilliant.

He suggested I slice the cake, take the pictures, then replace the slice and frost over it.  He thinks like such a man, doesn’t he?  I mean, how to you re-frost ganache topping?  And what happens when you’re ready to serve the cake and you need to find where it’s already been sliced?  And doesn’t he know how hard it is to frost over the crumbs that inevitably get all over everything when you slice it?

And, most importantly, how will I taste it?  I can’t very well serve and blog about a cake that is experimental and never been tasted, can I?  What if it tastes like soap?  Not that I think it would.  There is literally no way to combine chocolate and peanut butter that doesn’t taste good.

chocolate peanut butter cake recipe

But fate stepped in.

I had enough batter to bake three layers.  Only, the third layer turned out a little… not right.  Who can say why?  When I tried to pick it up and put it on the cake stand, it fell apart and broke into several pieces.

So there I was, standing in the kitchen with two beautiful layers of a three-layer cake, and one absolutely unusable one.

Aaaaand I had just a little more frosting than I needed.  I’m guessing you know what happened next.

peanut butter chocolate cake

So, I can honestly tell you that this cake is absolutely delicious.  Robb was crazy impressed, which doesn’t happen much.  It has an almost brownie-like texture.

And, as if chocolate peanut butter cake and peanut butter frosting weren’t enough, (and also because I might be the worst cake decorator the world has ever known) I covered the top with chocolate ganache and threw some chopped peanut butter cups on top.  I will tell my family that’s because it’s double delicious.  That way they will never know that it’s because I don’t want anyone to laugh at the dessert blogger who can’t frost a cake to save her soul.

Oh, about that missing slice of cake… Do you think anyone will notice?

 

 

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5.0 from 15 reviews
Chocolate Peanut Butter Cake
 
Cook time
Total time
 
A chocolate peanut butter cake with peanut butter frosting and chocolate ganache, topped with chopped peanut butter cups.
Author:
Recipe type: cake
Serves: 12
Ingredients
CAKE:
  • ½ cup butter
  • 1½ cups sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • ¾ cup creamy peanut butter
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 2 tsp. baking soda
  • ½ cup cocoa powder
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 cups flour
FROSTING:
  • ½ cup butter
  • 1 cup peanut butter
  • 6 T. milk
  • about 2½ cups powdered sugar
GANACHE:
  • about 4 oz. chopped dark or bittersweet chocolate
  • ¼ cup heavy cream
Instructions
  1. Cream butter and sugar. Add eggs, sour cream, vanilla, and peanut butter, and mix well.
  2. Add salt and soda, and cocoa, and mix well.
  3. Add milk alternately with flour, mixing just until combined.
  4. Prepare round pans by lining with wax paper or parchment paper, and coating with a non-stick spray.
  5. Separate batter evenly into three layer pans. Bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes, until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Let layers cool before frosting.
  6. FROSTING: Combine all ingredients, mixing until smooth.
  7. GANACHE: Chop chocolate and place chocolate and cream in a double boiler. *(see notes) Stir until melted and smooth.
  8. ASSEMBLE: Place layer on cake stand and frost the top. Place second layer on top and frost. Place third layer on top and frost top and sides.
  9. Pour hot ganache over frosted cake, letting it spread across the top.
  10. Garnish with chopped peanut butter cups, if desired.
Notes
If you don't have a double boiler, place chocolate and cream in a heat-safe bowl. Place bowl over a pot of boiling water, making sure the bowl does not touch the water.

 If you enjoy this recipe, you might also enjoy:

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cake from Smitten Kitchen
Chocolate Peanut Butter Crunch Cake from Hungry Couple NYC
Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Can Cake from Host the Toast

chocolate peanut butter cake

peanut butter chocolate cake

 

 

 

 

 

 

Almond Buttermilk Cake

This cake recipe uses buttermilk and almonds.  Similar to Swedish visiting cake, this almond cake recipe is quick, simple, and unfrosted.

almond cakeI was given a bag of sugar from the Zulka company to test and review.

Ever since I bought this baking book by Dorie Greenspan, I’ve been dreaming of the Swedish Visiting Cake.

Honestly, it’s a testament to how simply perfect it is, because generally I’m one for super-sweet, super-chocolatey, completely decadent, over-the-top desserts.  This cake is the exact opposite.  Simple, not too sweet, unassuming, unfrosted, and gorgeous.

The book says it’s called a visiting cake because you can see your neighbors coming up the road, and throw this cake together before they get to the front door.  It’s just about right, too.

This recipe isn’t exactly like Dorie’s, mainly because I really wanted to make a buttermilk cake.  Oh, buttermilk, the love of my culinary life.  So I merged Dorie’s visiting cake with a blueberry buttermilk cake I found here, to create this deliciously simple almond buttermilk cake.

It was raining when I made it, too, which somehow seemed rather apropos.  This thing was easy like Sunday morning.  (I may or may not be listening to Lionel Richie while writing this.)

Did I just date myself?

cake recipe

Speaking of simple and uncluttered, I recently discovered this sugar called Zulka.  This stuff is unrefined and less processed than the regular stuff, not to mention it catches the light and looks really cool and sparkly.

The awesome people at Zulka sent me a bag to try, and somehow this cake seemed the perfect fit for the unrefined sugar.

My opinion?  Well, the stuff is easy to find (I found it at Walmart), the difference between Zulka and regular sugar is pretty small, and the price difference is very small too.  So, if you’re the health-conscious, worried-about-genetically-modified-foods type, you’ll love Zulka.  I am decidedly not worried about genetically modified foods, but I do like how pretty and sparkly this sugar is.

Is that shallow?  Probably.

cake recipe

I guess it’s that time of day, now.  Time for me to fight the urge to eat cake for dinner.

And it’s time for you to enter this awesome giveaway.  You could win your own bag of sparkly unrefined Zulka sugar!

{Giveaway now closed.}

brown sugar recipeBrown Sugar Cake shortbread recipeAlmond Shortbread vanilla cupcake recipeVanilla Buttermilk Cake

Disclaimer: I was given a free sample of Zulka sugar to review, but all my opinions are my own.
There are affiliate links included in this post, which I may earn money from.  I promise not to spend it all in one place.

Continue reading “Almond Buttermilk Cake” »

Graham Cracker Chocolate Chip Cookies

Graham Cracker Recipe; This delicious chocolate chip cookie uses graham cracker crumbs as a little sweet surprise.

graham cracker recipeOf all the social media out there, I might love Pinterest the best.  I follow a lot of other food bloggers, and consequently, my feed is full of gorgeous meals, drool-worthy desserts, and decadent cookies.

Are you following me yet?  Because you totally should be.  I keep an entire pinboard devoted solely to cookies.

I guess you know how I feel about cookies.

If you want to follow me, just click this link to view all my pinboards, including the one about cookies, the one about desserts, and yes… the one entirely about non-alcoholic beverages.

Not long ago, I pinned these gooey S’mores Cookies from Kevin and Amanda, and I just could’t stop thinking about them.  I wanted to create my own version, one without marshmallows.

Not that I have anything against marshmallows.  I just wanted to keep it simple, like a plain old chocolate chip cookie with a little graham cracker surprise.chocolate chip cookie

You would die if you saw me photographing these.  First of all, the best thing I have for a backdrop is the dog kennel.  I know that sounds really strange, but it’s handy and it works.  I set the kennel on the table and leaned these white boards against it.

Then my brilliant teenage son, The Lizard, thought it would be a great idea to put the dog inside the kennel.  Which was on the kitchen table.  Which had cookies on it.

The kids were hanging around my photo shoot like zombies that have just found brains, waiting for the moment I would give them the okay to dive face first into the cookies.  I had melted chocolate on my hands, and I was working really hard not to get the chocolate on my camera.

And then the doorbell rang.  And the dog went nuts.  The kids were running to the door, I was yelling, the dog was barking, it was chaos.

It’s lucky I had any cookies left to share with you!

graham cracker recipe

My version of these cookies has less flour, so the cookies are very flat and soft.  They would be totally fine with a little more flour.

And, although I didn’t use any, I think it would be totally appropriate to use 1/2 tsp. cinnamon in this cookie.  Or you could use the cinnamon graham crackers, which would be delicious too.

So many options!  Maybe I’ll try them with chocolate grahams sometime.  I should check Pinterest and see if that’s been done already!

 

 
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Continue reading “Graham Cracker Chocolate Chip Cookies” »

Lemon Ricotta Cookies

Recipe for lemon cookies with lemon icing.  These Lemon Ricotta Cookies are deliciously fresh for spring!

ricotta cookies I took my rapidly growing kid the the store to try on some pants.  Every pair he owns is a good 3 inches too short.  With some experimentation and trying on, we discovered that his pants size is 26×32, and that he looks terrible in skinny jeans.

I walked into Aeropostale, armed with this pants size, and the clerk responded, “Daaaang!!  The kid has legs!”  And then she told me to hit the website.

By the way, you can’t get this size on the website, either.  Not. Even. Close.

His brother is even skinnier, though with slightly shorter legs (very slightly), but that kid can rock the skinny jeans.  Which is lucky for him, because skinny jeans are actually not too hard to find for skinny kids.  Go figure.

And while big and tall stores certainly exist, skinny and tall stores do NOT.  Trust me on this one.

lemon cookies

People say, “You should fatten that kid up.”
And I say, “Oh, good idea, I never thought of that before.”

Okay, yes, maybe I have a tendency to be a little snarky.  But it is an issue staring me in the face basically daily.

They sure didn’t get these super skinny genes from moi.

I mean, you’d think having a cookie blog would be enough, right?  I bake cookies, desserts, and snacks every week.  The kids eat them like they’re going out of style.  And still the doctor says things like, “No restrictions on his diet, let him eat whatever he wants.”

Already got it covered, doc.  Those boys are walking garbage disposals.

lemon cookies

I like the idea of ricotta in a cookie.  Besides providing a little extra protein and fat in my skinny kids’ diets, it also gives a nice soft, almost spongey texture to the cookies.

The lemon is for me, because it’s spring, and around this time of year, I start getting overwhelming cravings for all things lemon.  It’s just so fresh and bright!

If you’re a lemon addict, too, you’ll love these cookies.  Or you could check out this stuff:

lemon crinkles cookiesLemon Crinkles lemon pancakesLemon Pancakes frozen cherryFrozen Cherry Lemonade

 

Adapted from Giada de Laurentiis

Lemon Ricotta Cookies
 
Cook time
Total time
 
A spongey lemon ricotta cookie with lemon icing.
Recipe type: cookies
Serves: 4 dozen
Ingredients
  • ½ cup butter, softened
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1¼ cup ricotta cheese
  • zest and juice of 1 lime *(see notes)
  • zest and juice of ½ lemon*
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 2 cups flour
FOR ICING:
  • zest and juice of ½ lemon*
  • 1 T. milk or cream
  • ¾ cup powdered sugar
Instructions
  1. Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add eggs and ricotta and mix well.
  2. Add zest and juices, mix well. Add salt and baking powder, mix well.
  3. Add flour, and mix until combined.
  4. Drop spoonfuls of dough onto a baking sheet, leaving room for spreading, and bake at 375 for 11-15 minutes.
  5. For frosting, combine all ingredients, mixing until smooth. Use a very small amount of frosting on each cookie, spreading while cookies are still warm.
  6. Store in an airtight container between layers of wax paper.

 If you enjoy this recipe, you might also enjoy:

Lemon Ricotta Muffins from Healthy Food for Living
Iced Lemon Ricotta Donuts from La Casa De Sweets
Lemon-Blueberry Ricotta Scones from Tiffin Tales

Lemon cookies

ricotta cookies

Brown Sugar Cake with Salted Caramel Dip

Brown sugar recipe; This brown sugar cake is covered in caramel sauce instead of frosting.  This brown sugar cake recipe is light and subtle and delicious.

brown sugar recipeConfession time.  Robb’s family loves to eat “cake and dip,” which is a white cake with chocolate sauce instead of frosting.  Initially, I was pretty grossed out by the idea, because the texture of soggy foods causes an instant gag reflex.

(Sidebar, my dad used to think warm milk with a piece of bread floating in it was a good dinner.  I’m not sure whether I hated the soggy bread or the warm milk more.  Can I get an “ewwww!!”)

However, I have learned, evolved, and grown to love cake and dip.  So, when I informed Robb of an upcoming dinner get-together, and asked what I should make for dessert, cake and dip was his idea.  Changing the chocolate dip to caramel dip was his idea, too.

Changing the white cake to brown sugar cake was my idea, though.  I’m taking full credit.

We’re a brilliant team, nay?

When the day of the dinner party came, though, it was chaos at my house.

brown sugar recipe

True Story: I went to get a load of laundry started, and discovered my laundry room floor was a lake.  Water everywhere.  I checked the walls and saw paint bubbling, and knew they were wet, too.  I immediately knew what the problem was, it was the hose, which is just outside the laundry room window.

That stupid hose bib has been nothing but trouble.  It keeps freezing and breaking, and we’ve been trying for years to work around some, shall we say, creative plumbing in that area?  The previous owners thought it would be an awesome idea to run their sprinklers through the hose.

My dad is a plumber.  I know better.

Trying to wrench the hose bib off, Robb broke the pipe… inside the wall.  Yep.

The upshot of all this is that the water was off for quite a while, while Robb and my dad made the necessary repairs.  And there’s a hole in my wall. *sigh*

caramel sauce

I figured I could still bake a cake without water, but have you ever tried cracking eggs without getting it on your hands?  It’s practically impossible.

It’s lucky there was a little water hanging around, it water bottles and such.

This salted caramel dip is seriously delicious.  It is kind of on the thin side, but it thickens as it cools.  You can warm it up for 30-60 seconds in the microwave to loosen it up again.

This brown sugar cake turned out quite delicious.  The flavor is light and subtle, not too overpowering.  The point of cake and dip is that you don’t need frosting.  However, if you want to use frosting instead of dip, I wouldn’t blame you.  I recommend trying this salted caramel frosting from Haniela or this one from Pineapple and Coconut.

And I recommend having water on hand when you make it.

Want more? Try these caramelized favorites!

brown sugar cookies
fruit dip
easy-caramel-cake-recipes

Brown Sugar Cake with Salted Caramel Dip
 
Cook time
Total time
 
A simple brown sugar cake with salted caramel sauce.
Author:
Recipe type: cake
Serves: 12
Ingredients
  • ½ cup shortening
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 tablespoons sour cream
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1½ cups milk
  • 2¼ cups flour
FOR CARAMEL SAUCE:
  • ½ cup butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • ¾ cup heavy cream
  • 1 tabespoon coarse sea salt or fleur de sel
Instructions
  1. Cream shortening and sugars. Add eggs and sour cream and mix well.
  2. Add vanilla, salt, and baking powder, and mix well.
  3. Add milk alternately with flour, mixing until incorporated.
  4. Pour into a greased 9x13 cake pan, and bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes, until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean.
  5. FOR CARAMEL SAUCE:
  6. Melt butter in a heavy 2-3 qt. saucepan, over high heat.
  7. Add brown sugar, and stir. Add cream slowly, stirring.
  8. Bring to a boil, and boil 3-4 minutes, stirring constantly.
  9. Remove from heat and add salt. Serve warm.
  10. Store in refrigerator. If needed, microwave for 30-60 seconds to warm before serving.

If you enjoy this recipe, you might also enjoy:

Cookie Butter Brown Sugar Streusel Bars from Averie Cooks
Brown Sugar Shortbread from Authentic Suburban Gourmet
Almond Brown Sugar Pumpkin Bread from Running with Tweezers

brown sugar recipe

caramel sauce

Monster Cookies

Large peanut butter cookies with oats and chocolate chips; Learn how to make monster cookies with peanut butter, oats, and chocolate chips!

Monster Cookies from JensFavoriteCookies.com  -  These large peanut butter oat cookies are sure to be a hit with your little monsters!Food Blogger Problems:  I have an addiction to purchasing food props.  I have a basket that is not just kind of overflowing with napkins and dishtowels.  I have a large cardboard box full of placemats and cookie cutters, paper napkins and seasonal glittery things.  I’m completely out of space on my shelves and in my cabinets for any more dishes or glasses or cake stands, but it doesn’t stop me from buying them.

Is there a 12-step program for this?

Here’s another one.  I feel compelled to pester everyone I know to give me ideas for new desserts and cookies.  What’s your favorite?  Do you prefer this or that?  Can you send me a recipe for that?

Or I pester them with all my latest photos.  What do you think of this picture?  How about this one?  How about this one?  Or this one?

I fear I’m becoming that friend.  The one you avoid because she cannot stop talking about her stupid blog.  I tell myself to tone it down all the time.

Monster Cookies from JensFavoriteCookies.com  -  These large peanut butter oat cookies are sure to be a hit with your little monsters!

My latest new Food Blogger Problem involves my children, and their propensity to volunteer me to make cookies for all their parties and activities.  Which, don’t get me wrong, is all well and good, but the timing for baking and photographing is rarely good.

And I photograph everything.  I literally can’t stand to bake cookies and not take pictures of them.

Monster Cookies from JensFavoriteCookies.com  -  These large peanut butter oat cookies are sure to be a hit with your little monsters!Monster Cookies from JensFavoriteCookies.com  -  These large peanut butter oat cookies are sure to be a hit with your little monsters!

This time, the offspring (and I suspect the church youth leaders) planned ahead.  They gave me notice, multiple reminders, and even recipe suggestions.  After some discussion and debate, we decided on these Monster Cookies.  Because of their monstrous size, and because they are chock full of everything.

When you have a house full of 30 teenagers, a dainty, delicate cookie is just not going to get the job done.  You need a big monstrous cookie that is chock full of everything.

Now I only have one more problem…

… keeping my kids’ grubby hands off of them!

crispy peanut butter cookiesPeanut Butter
Krispie Cookies
oatmeal chocolate chipOatmeal Chocolate
Chip Cookies
peanut butter cookiesPeanut Butter
Blossoms

Continue reading “Monster Cookies” »

Grasshopper Cookies

Grasshopper recipe; These mint oreo cookies are soft and easy to make, made with Oreo pudding mix.  Grasshopper Cookie Recipe.

Grasshopper recipeSometimes I wonder if my children are learning anything at school.

Take this recent example.  The Hippie Chick was struggling through her math, the same concept she has been taught over and over and over, and her brothers were trying to help her.  It wasn’t going too well, so Robb chimed in with some questions to get them thinking in the right direction.

“How many feet are in a yard?”
Silence.  “Thirteen?”
“Are you serious?”

Let’s move on.  “How much is in a gross?”
“Eight.”
“What?  You’ve obviously never bought fireworks.”  (Robb is from Wyoming.  Does it show?)

At this point it was becoming a game.  “How long is a fortnight?”
“Six.”
“Six what?”
“24 hours.”
“Not even close.”

mint oreo

“How much is two bits?”
“A dollar.”
*sigh* (followed by long conversation about the answers to all these questions.)

Later on, Robb looked up the history of “two bits,” which was actually pretty interesting, and which I’m sure the Fruitarian would have loved, had he not tired of the conversation long before.  It’s all about pieces of eight, which you’ll know all about it you’ve ever watched the Pirates of the Caribbean movies.  A piece of eight was like a silver dollar, and people frequently chopped them into eight pie-slice pieces, called bits, to have small change.  So two bits was basically a quarter dollar.

Learn something new every day.

Grasshopper recipes

Not that pirate coins or fortnights or even learning something new has anything to do with Grasshopper Cookies.  The Lizard is reading this over my shoulder as I write, and telling me so.

Umm, thanks dude.  I know.

There’s just only so much you can say about cookies, isn’t there?  I mean, it’s soft, it’s minty, it’s got chopped chocolate mint cookies in it, the entire batch disappeared in less than 24 hours… it’s basically the same old story.  The same old wonderful, delicious story.

With mint.

But I’m thrilled to see that he is picking up on some basic writing elements.  Perhaps there is hope for the future after all.

chocolate mintPeppermint
Popcorn Bark
Triple Chocolate Oreo CookiesTriple Chocolate
Oreo Chunk Cookies
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Key Lime Fruit Dip

Fruit Dip made with key lime yogurt and lime juice; recipe for Cream Cheese Dip with lime juice for fruit and crackers.

key lime dip thumbI know I should feel flattered when my family says, “Wow, this is good!” with surprise in their voices, after trying my latest dessert/snack concoction.

But I don’t.  I feel kind of offended that they would be surprised.

Like, by now you still don’t expect it to be amazing?  I know I’m pretty much just making this stuff up, but still.

This was one of those days.  I whipped up this Key Lime Dip pretty quickly, having never made anything like it before, and I dipped some vanilla wafers in it, and gently forced everyone in the house to try it.

They were pleasantly surprised.  Jerks.

The Fruitarian was, as expected, happiest of all.  There was fresh fruit and sweet fruity dip in the house, and he was allowed to eat it all.  It was like heaven for that kid.

key lime dip tall2a

He then came up with these brilliant ideas:  “We should grow strawberries.  We should have fruit trees, like apples, and peaches, and cherries.  Can we have a banana tree?”

It’s not exactly banana weather here in Utah, but we did end up having quite a discussion about having a vegetable garden this year.  I think the Fruitarian will be the official family gardener this year.

Wish us all luck with that.

key lime dip diptych

This dip came together so fast and easy, even I couldn’t believe it.  It is really delicious, and would be perfect for just about any kind of fruit, cookies, graham crackers, etc.  It did turn out a little thin, but I thought if I added powdered sugar it would be too sweet, so if you don’t mind your dip a little drippy, the flavor is best this way.

Also, it makes a pretty big batch, so don’t be afraid to halve this one.  Or just keep leftovers in the fridge.

Of course, if you have a lot of fruit and fruit dip around, I could just lend you the Fruitarian for a day or so.  That skinny kid will take care of it for you!

 

 

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Coconut Lime Poke Cake

Poke Cake is fun and delicious.  This Jello poke cake recipe is made with coconut cake and lime Jello.

coconut lime poke cake thumbI’ve been trying to dream up some green recipes, since it’s March and all, and the thing is, there just aren’t that many desserty flavors that are green.  I mean, you have pistachio, mint, lime, and that’s about it.

Avocados and spinach, while present on this blog, are not great for desserts.

Then I remembered the time I made Coconut Lime Sugar Cookies and decided I needed that flavor combination in my life again.

I went looking around the Pinter-webs for inspiration.  Which is when I realized that I have never actually made a poke cake.  In fact, I’ve obviously never even spoken about making a poke cake, because when I announced to the family that their dessert tonight would be poke cake, they all thought I said “pote cake.”

Robb: “What’s a pote cake?”
Me: “POKE.  Poke… Cake.  Because you poke it with a fork and pour jello over it.”
Robb: {look of bewilderment} “Hmm.  I’ve never heard of it.”

No kidding?  {Sarcasm becomes me.}

coconut lime poke cake tall1a

I have this thing where I like things to have more than one flavor.  I mean, why have banana muffins when you can have Banana Chocolate Chunk Oat Muffins?  Why have buttermilk scones when you can have Coconut White Chocolate Buttermilk Scones?  You see what I mean.

Unless the flavor is chocolate.  Then chocolate with more chocolate is just plain fine with me.

So it really could not be a lime poke cake.  It HAD to be a Coconut Lime Poke Cake.  It was the only choice.

coconut lime poke cake wide1

I did one thing which was brand new for me.  I made whipped coconut cream frosting, which you probably guessed is dairy-free.  I don’t really care about being dairy-free that much, but I do love me some coconut.  What you have to do is buy a can of coconut milk, and when you get it home, immediately put it in the fridge and Do. Not. Touch. it for a day-ish.

Don’t shake it, don’t stir it, don’t turn it upside down.  Move it as little as possible.  Because, just like real cream and milk, coconut cream will separate from the syrup.  You can just gently scoop the cream off the top, whip it up with some powdered sugar, and you have a might fine icing, my friends.

You’ll have to spread it thin, but it will taste mighty fine.  Especially on lime poke cake. Continue reading “Coconut Lime Poke Cake” »

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” »

Chocolate Frosted Cookies

These chocolate cookies are a lot like brownies, rich, moist, and delicious.  This chocolate cookie recipe uses buttermilk in both the cookie and the frosting.

chocolate cookiesWhen I first started this blog, my mom tracked down an old family recipe for a cakey, frosted chocolate cookie that my great-grandmother used to make.  In fact, it was one of the first cookies I shared with you.

Lately, I have been dreaming of that cookie, remembering how wonderfully rich and flavorful it was.  I’ve been meaning to make it again.

Then last week, my great aunt passed away.  We knew it was coming, but it was still sad.  She was an amazing woman, warm and caring, with 8 children and approximately 452 grandchildren.

Seriously.  They’re my cousins, and I don’t know who half of them are, because there are far too many to keep track of.

If the whole family was in high school together… the school would be overcrowded.  You get the idea.

chocolate cookies

The passing of beloved Aunt B was the final excuse I needed to bake chocolate cookies.  Well, I never need much of an excuse to make something chocolate.  Let me rephrase.  It was the final excuse I needed to make the family recipe.

Oh, hooray for family recipes that are chocolate!!

chocolate cookie recipe

I learned something new this time around, while chatting with my mom about the funeral and the cookies.  Mom said that Aunt B stopped making the cookies because they are a lot like brownies, and it’s easier to make brownies.

I might be the world’s biggest brownie fan, but honestly? I think I’d rather have these cookies.  They are deliciously cakey and moist and brownie-like, but please don’t let that stop you.

Besides, they are coated in the single tastiest chocolate frosting in the known universe.

I’m sure when I get to heaven, I’ll find both Aunt B and these cookies there.

buttermilk-wide

5.0 from 3 reviews
Chocolate Frosted Cookies
 
Cook time
Total time
 
A chewy, cakey chocolate cookie with chocolate frosting.
Recipe type: Cookies
Serves: 2-3 dozen
Ingredients
COOKIE:
  • ½ cup shortening
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 2 oz. unsweetened chocolate, melted
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • ½ cup buttermilk
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • ½ tsp. baking soda
  • 1⅔ cup flour
FROSTING:
  • 4 T. butter, melted
  • ½ tsp. vanilla
  • 1 T. cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp. buttermilk
  • ¾ cup powdered sugar
Instructions
  1. Cream shortening and sugar. Add egg, melted chocolate, and vanilla, and mix well.
  2. Add buttermilk, salt, and soda and mix well.
  3. Add flour, and mix just until combined.
  4. Drop spoonfuls onto baking sheet, and bake at 350 degrees for 10-12 minutes. Remove carefully and allow to cool completely before frosting.
  5. For frosting, combine all ingredients, mixing until smooth. Use a small amount of frosting on each cookie.
  6. Store in an airtight container between layers of wax paper.

Grapefruit Soda

These non alcoholic drinks are delicious and simply made.  Combine grapefruit, lemon, and lime for this refreshing citrus soda.

non alcoholic drinks

While the neighbor kid (a.k.a. “Duct Tape”) was at our house today, he was describing to The Fruitarian and me about his big plans to be a YouTube star.  He’s going to have his own channel and everything.

I couldn’t quite get a grasp of what all these videos are going to be about, but apparently several scripts have been written, and at least one involves Duct Tape shaving off his coveted mustache.

I think he is the only 12 year old in the subdivision with a mustache.  You can understand his reluctance to shave it.

The one thing that will tie all these YouTube videos together is sandwiches.  Yes, sandwiches.  Grilled Cheese, mostly.  The videos that aren’t specifically about sandwiches will have sandwiches as a sub-theme or at least a prop.

It’s as good a prop as any, if you ask me, and is definitely appropriate for videos made by teenagers.

non alcoholic drinks

I, however, am not a teenager (as Robb kindly reminded me, by looking through old photo albums and saying, “Look how young you were!,” as if I am not young now.), so I require more adult props.  And my props aren’t for YouTube videos, they’re for real life.

And this blog.

Which, let’s face it, is a lot like YouTube but without the videos.
citrus soda

Truth be told, this particular life-prop isn’t adult in the afternoon-cocktail-no-kids-allowed sense, but more in the kids-prefer-grape-soda-to-grapefruit-soda sense.  I don’t mind if my kids drink this, but they probably won’t.

Which is just as well, because I prefer to keep this to myself anyway.  It just reminds me of a lazy summer day, which is something I could really use right about now.

Mom Blog to Money Blog
I
mprove Your Blog
Lime and Thyme drinkLime Thyme Mocktail grapefruit sandwich cookie recipeGrapefruit Cookies

Continue reading “Grapefruit Soda” »

Rocky Road Bars

Rocky Road is a classic flavor combination.  This easy recipe for Rocky Road Bars uses a chocolate, peanut, and marshmallow flavor combination.
chocolate peanutRecently, I held a little cookie-making demonstration for the ladies at church.  They obviously all know that I am a rich and famous food blogger *ahem* so several people came and baked and asked questions.

It was a fun morning.

I had these great plans.  We made Oreos from cake mix, and talked about various cake mix + frosting flavor options.  (White cake + grapefruit frosting… Spice Cake + Maple Frosting… Chocolate cake + peanut butter frosting… the possibilities are practically endless.)  Then, I took that same cake mix cookie, and mixed some stuff in to make a Rocky Road Cookie.

It was a brilliant idea, but an utter disaster.  The cookies are still glued to my favorite baking sheet.  Talk about embarrassing.

(Actually, they’re not still glued to the baking sheet.  They were stuck fast for a day or so, and then Robb rescued me and cleaned the whole mess up, as he frequently does.  You see why I keep him around.)

rocky road

At any rate, this embarrassing failure bothered me, and I reworked the recipe a couple different ways until I found a combination that I was happy with.  I’ll warn you now… they don’t look pretty, but they taste great.

The key decision-making ingredient is the marshmallows.  It’s the marshmallows that made the cookies stick to the pan, and it’s the marshmallows that make the bars kind of ugly-looking, and it’s the marshmallows that make the whole thing taste so amazing.

And since we are obviously not leaving the marshmallows out of the cookie bars, we are just going to have to learn to deal with them.  The lion tamer has a chair and a whip, and we have a 9×13 pan and some parchment paper.

Parchment paper is the key to your sanity on this particular recipe.

rocky road

And sidebar, the stupid grocery store got me again.  I’m quite certain I purchased regular old parchment paper, but when I got home, the grocery store had secretly switched it for parchment-lined foil.  Wha-whaaat?  I don’t know why the grocery store would do that to me, but it works just as well as parchment, so that’s what I used.

One last tip: you might want to put the marshmallows just on top, rather than mixing them in.  This way there is no danger of sticking, and the marshmallows get all lovely-toasty-brown and delicious.

If you want to mix them in, go right ahead, but you should at least let the person doing the dishes get the biggest vote. Continue reading “Rocky Road Bars” »