Tag Archives: baking

Brown Butter Peanut Butter Cup Cookies

Brown Butter Peanut Butter Cup CookiesUm, so, yeah. It’s probably a good idea to eat some cookies.DSC_0007DSC_0010DSC_0025It’s February. You’re probably cold. I mean, even I’m cold. It’s probably, I don’t know, 70 degrees around here lately. Which is 21 C if you were wondering. Which, is basically as frigid as it gets around these parts. So what I’m trying to say is, it’s probably a good idea to eat some cookies. DSC_0027DSC_0069DSC_0071It’s almost valentine’s day. Do you hate valentine’s day? Ugh, so many people do, it’s like you must be uncool if you like it. Unless you are sending out these valentines. But really, you should be excited about it. Want to know why? Chocolate. Duh. Also, those giant heart shaped reese’s peanut butter cups. You know the ones I’m talking about. You get Christmas tree shaped ones at Christmas, egg shaped ones at Easter, pumpkin ones on Halloween, and heart ones for Valentines. AKA: the only four holidays worth celebrating–for that exact reason. Easter is actually the best one, because See’s candy makes like four pound bordeaux eggs. But what I’m trying to say is, it’s probably a good idea to eat some cookies. DSC_0081DSC_0089It’s a Saturday. See, what I’m trying to say is, it’s probably a good idea to eat some cookies. 

Brown Butter Peanut Butter Cup Cookies (adapted from For me, For you.. who adapted it from NYT)

So, before you freak out when you look at the ingredients list and see not one, but two types of flour plus instructions to sift..let me tell you this. These cookies are awesome. Now, they say pretty explicitly that the real secret is to chill them for at least several hours, and ideally a couple days, before baking. This is pretty key to develop flavors and also keep them from being thin, weirdo chocolate chip cookies. Let me drop some truth bombs on you. I have made this with both kinds of flour listed, and with regular ol’ all purpose. Both times were awesome. I have been impatient and chilled this for only an hour, and I’ve let it go a full day or more. Can’t go wrong, yo. Either way, so long as the dough is nice and cold when it goes in the oven. For me this made about 38 pretty hugenormous cookies. Another win.

Ingredients

  • 1 2/3 cups mini peanut butter cups–about 9 oz (we found these in a bulk bin section of I don’t remember what store. But I’m pretty sure you can find something in any grocery store; if you can’t find minis just chop up bigger ones!)
  • 1 cup chocolate chips–about 6 oz (or better yet, use some chopped dark chocolate. We just didn’t have any on hand at my mom’s house when I made these)
  • 2 cups minus 2 tbsp cake flour–240g (which you can totes make yourself)
  • 1 2/3 cups bread flour– 240g (these two flours are different densities, the weights and measurements are both correct.)
  • 1 1/4 tsp baking soda–7.5g
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder–7.5g
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt –7.5g (the weight of salt can vary quite a bit depending on what type you are using)
  • 2 1/2 sticks butter– 280g
  • 1 1/4 c brown sugar– 270g
  • 1 cup + 2tbsp white sugar– 227g
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract– approx 10mL
  • Extra salt, and possibly some milk or water.

Procedure

  1. First up. Brown you butter. In a pot, melt the butter over medium heat, stirring it pretty much constantly with a whisk or wooden spoon. It will melt, then it will foam like crazy, then it will become clear-ish. Soon after that, don’t look away! and don’t stop stirring! You will see little brown bits start to form on the bottom. Keep on stirring and stirring until it smells like heaven in your kitchen and the butter is browned. I let mine get reaaal brown this time, but you will know by the smell if you’ve burnt it. Don’t let it burn, as long as you keep stirring and take it off the heat once it is fragrant, you should be fine
  2. Set aside and let cool. You don’t have to let it re-solidify, but if you want to, you can stick it in the fridge to make this part faster.
  3. Sift together the flours, baking powder, baking soda, and salt into a medium bowl.
  4. In a large bowl (or in your mixer with the paddle attached), cream together the browned butter and the sugars until super light a fluffy, about 5 minutes. Add in the eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Pour in vanilla and mix. 
  5. Slowly add in the dry ingredients and mix to combine. Fold in your peanut butter cups and chocolate chips/chunks. Note: if your dough is super dry and crumbly, it is probably because browning the butter evaporates out some of its liquid. Add milk or water, one tablespoon at a time, until the mixture is no longer crumbly, if needed.
  6. Press plastic wrap into the top of the dough and stick the bowl in the fridge for at least an hour, and up to 72 hours. You can totally cook it in batches if you want.
  7. When you’re ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350F and line baking sheets with parchment paper. Remove the bowl from the fridge and let it soften ever so slightly.
  8. Scoop out big ol’ scoops (I used an ice cream scooper and got two per scoop. They were giant) and place 1-2 inches apart on baking sheets. Sprinkle with a bit of salt if you like, and bake for about 15-20 minutes, or until the edges are golden brown and the centers are soft and smell so dang good you burn your mouth because you have to eat one right that second.
  9. yum. Try to let them cool before you eat them, but I don’t blame you if you can’t.
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Better-than-Twix Bars

It’s almost halloween. So I know you’re gorging on candy.

Or maybe you’re one of the smart ones, and you’re waiting until November 1st, when it all goes on sale, to stock up. Or you’re the lazy one, and you’re waiting until your son/daughter/friend/sister/brother/roommate/random person goes trick or treating and you plan on stealing all of their candy. Sorry, I mean, “testing to make sure it’s safe”. Either way, it’s a candy kind of a month.

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Seriously the Best Granola Bars I’ve Ever Had..

I am a snacker. If I don’t eat every few hours, you probably don’t want to hang out with me because I transform into an angry, obnoxious, whiny little brat. Maybe I shouldn’t admit all that. But I just did. The point is, I know my snacks.

I also like to hike. Hiking is one of those activities that totally counts as a super-workout, but since you get to stop and take pictures and eat snacks in the middle, it’s a lot more fun. And when you’re hiking, good snacks are a must.

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Chocolate Raspberry Mousse Cake

Life. Is. Nuts. How does time slip away from me? How on Earth is it September? Football season is starting? Summer is over? I made this cake a month ago and haven’t told you about it yet?! When the heck did this happen?! I am slowly realizing that life is, in fact, hectic and that no, it will not ever stop. What’s that? You have a baby and three dogs and I should stop whining over here about being busy, grad-student-with-no-dependents-not-even-a-fish?

Fine.

I’ll stop.

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Peach and Nectarine Crumble


So my baby brother graduated from high school last week. Er, maybe it was two weeks ago now. But either way. He’s the youngest. And now he’s (partially) grown. Which is weird for me, and possibly even weirder for my parents who now no longer have PTA meetings or Grad Nite planning to attend to after over twelve years of being a High School Parent. Seriously? Nuts.

So since this graduation was kind of a big deal, the end of an era and all of that, I made dessert for the party. Scratch, I made a LOT of dessert for the party. Three different kinds, plus whipped cream and I busted out the leftovers from my birthday cake. I also made homemade margarita mix. So yeah, it was a good party.

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Chocolate Caramel Cheesecake

I have an oven again after six weeks without. And it was my birthday Tuesday. Clearly, a cake must be made. But guys.. don’t think me blasphemous or anything.. but I’m not really a cake person. I know, ‘What do you mean you’re not a cake person?! What up with all the cake recipes on here?’ Um. Well. I really like making cakes. And cupcakes. But the eating of them.. well let’s just say I’d rather have ice cream. Or pie. or ice cream and pie. But on a birthday, I just feel like it has to be cake. Enter: Cheesecake.

Good lord I love cheesecake. Possibly more than pie. But maybe not more than ice cream. Either way, cheesecake is the most delicious form the cake can take, if you ask me about it. Which you didn’t, but I told you anyways. Cheesecake is what other cakes hope to be. It is creamy and sweet and savory and doesn’t even need any frosting to gussy it up. I just love it. Once, when I was little, we were at Boll Weevil and after  a giant hamburger, fries and a shake, they asked if we wanted dessert. I wanted cheesecake. My cousin (or maybe my uncle?) bet me I couldn’t finish it all. The slice was the size of my head. I finished it all.

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Homemade English Muffins

I love bread. It’s one of the few things I could eat every single day and I would always love it.. All the time. Forever. A couple of years ago Brett bought a bread book and we’ve been experimenting with many of its recipes for awhile now. And I’d like to think we’re getting pretty good at making bread.

So when I saw a recipe for English Muffins, I obviously jumped right in and made them that very day. Why? Well because English Muffins are just plain delicious. And let me tell you, they’re pretty dang easy to make too. Maybe not quite a easy as our normal bread, but with Rosie on my side I kind of feel unstoppable. Also, did you know it rarely gets below 70 degrees here? No, I’m not trying to make you jealous. I’m just letting you know that heating your oven to 450 to make bread isn’t always the most pleasant idea. And did you also know, english muffins are made on the stove. Yeah, uh-huh. So go ahead, bust out that flour. I think you’re making english muffins right about now.

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Cappuccino Fudge Cheesecake.

Yeah. Those three words. All in one sentence. Not a joke. This was, hands down, the best cheesecake I’ve ever had. And that’s saying something because I am somewhat of a cheesecake freak and I have eaten a dang lot of cheesecake in my life. But this one. Oh boy. It’s something else.

It’s a cookie crust that is so much better than a cookie crust. Because it has extra chocolate and sugar and nutmeg and butter and it’s heavenly. And then its basically fudge. Well, it’s chocolate ganache. But it’s more than I’ve ever had in one sitting. And then it’s cappuccino cheesecake with three, let me repeat, three bricks of cream cheese in it. And rum. and molasses. and man I wish I hadn’t eaten the last piece already. But it’s not even over yet. Because on top of that, it’s a heavenly sour cream layer, and  then it’s covered with even more ganache. I swoon just thinking about it. Continue reading

chocolate peanut butter cupcakes

Hi everyone. I’ve been away awhile.. but I have a good excuse! sort of. Well, I went to Thailand. That’s a pretty good one, right? I mean, sure I got back a week and a half ago, but that’s a big time difference! I’m still…adjusting? Anyway I know it’s cruel to taunt you with these chocolate peanut butter cupcakes seeing as it’s January and everyone in the world has resolved to eat less of things that contain such goodness as chocolate and peanut butter, and here I go just shoving it in your face! Well. I made no such resolutions. So here’s to the rest of you who fail in such things like resolve. And restraint. And self control. And adherance to any sort of rules. You go and you make these cupcakes. And eat them. And bring them to work to eat in front of all your friends munching on carrot sticks. And enjoy your little January rebellion. 

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Sugar Crisps: unveiling a family recipe


I missed the boat on Thanksgiving recipes; I don’t plan to do the same with Christmas. Now, in my family, there is one and only one sure sign that it is Christmas. No, it’s not the decorations (since those usually go up last minute and stay up far too long), or the Christmas Plates (which don’t come out until Christmas eve), or the music on the radio or the weather (hello, Southern California), no, it’s not any of those things. It’s much more simple. Sugar Crisps.

What are Sugar Crisps, you ask? Only the best and most delicious cookie you’ll ever eat. Unfortunately, you’ll only ever eat it on Christmas. I believe Angels actually partake in them around the holidays. And sadly for you, you’ve probably never had one (unless you are my family. or my friends) because this recipe has been closely guarded. Because Sugar Crisps are my grandma’s cookie. Did she invent them? For all intents and purposes, I’m going to say yes. Maybe it was her mother. Or maybe it was her grandmother. Or maybe it was an article in the paper or a recipe in a cookbook, I sure don’t know. All I know is we learned it from her, and that’s all you need to know.

  

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