Smitten Kitchen Every Day: Bake Sale Winning-est Gooey Oat Bars
Cookbook Overviews , Recipes / September 29, 2020

I know everyone’s stress levels are through the roof right now, and I know what I do when I’m stressed. I eat chocolate! This recipe is from Smitten Kitchen Every Day, the second cookbook of O.G. food blogger Deb Perelman. I already reviewed her first cookbook, The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook, when I made Balsamic and Beer-Braised Short Ribs. They were so good that when I saw she has another short rib recipe in this cookbook, I really wanted to try it. In fact, there were so many recipes I wanted to make. But in my current state of mind, I could not pass up these Gooey Oat Bars. They are super simple, easily modified according to taste, and so good. The bottom is basically a short bread cookie, and the top is a gooey mixture of oats, butter, brown sugar, coconut, and your choice of chocolate, dried fruit, or both. Mine were all chocolate, of course! Perelman said that they are a huge hit at bake sales, and I believe it. If we ever have bake sales again, I suggest you take these! Crust Nonstick spray 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/3 cup sugar 3/4 cup plus…

Sister Pie: Strawberry Pistachio Crumble Pie

I have had Sister Pie borrowed from the library for quite awhile (I checked it out right before my library closed because or COVID-19), and I kept avoiding it because I am not a pie baker. If I feel the need to make a pie for some reason, I usually just get a store-bought crust and call it a day. (My husband loves blackberry pie, and about the only baking he ever does is making homemade pie crusts.) But this book, which has a gorgeous cover, kept staring at me, and I finally decided to take on the challenge of making a homemade pie with crust from scratch. Sister Pie is written by Lisa Ludwinski who owns the Sister Pie bakery in Detroit. If you want a traditional pie cookbook, this is not for you. The basic pie crust recipe seemed pretty standard, but the pie recipes are full of non-traditional flavors like Concord Grape and Goat Cheese Pie or Rhubarb Rosemary Struesel Pie. As I read through the cookbook, I still found quite a few recipes that looked interesting, including some recipes that aren’t even for pies. There is a whole section about salads because Ludwinski said she makes…

The Happier Homemaker Blog: Easy Gluten Free Peanut Butter Cookies
Recipes / April 21, 2020

No flour. No problem! So I had a request from a friend of mine (Hey, Max!) who is trying to go gluten free to see if it clears up some health issues. Before I had a chance to search for some recipes in my cookbooks, this recipe popped up on Pinterest or Instagram or somewhere. (Sometimes mindlessly scrolling turns out to be useful!) This recipe is super easy, with just four ingredients, and they turned out super moist and delicious. These cookies are like peanut butter out of the jar, but kicked up a notch! Click on the image to get the recipe. I have also linked to some of the gluten-free recipes I have posted in the past. Enjoy! More gluten free recipes: Superhero Muffins Deep Dish Skillet Brownie Chocolate-Dipped Macaroons Parmesan and Herb-Crusted Cod Brown Rice Bowl with Edamame and Tamari Scallion Sauce

Cinnamon Spice Cake from Simple Cake
Cookbook Overviews , Recipes / October 24, 2019

I made this cake a few weeks a go, so I wanted to get a short post out about it. The cookbook that this comes from is Simple Cake: All You Need to Keep Your Friends and Family in Cake. The concept is great; it includes ten basic cake recipes, and then variations on those basic cakes. I really want to try out all the recipes! This may be one of those cookbooks I actually purchase, which is high praise. I wanted to try the basic Cinnamon Spice Cake since I am really in to fall baking right now. To serve it to my book club, I decided to make mini bundt cakes. This Wilton Mini Fluted Tube Pan is similar to the one I use. Cinnamon Spice Cake Makes one 13 by 9-inch rectangular cake or about 20 mini individual bundts 2 1/4 cups organic whole-grain spelt flour 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder 1/2 teaspoon baking soda 1/2 teaspoon salt 1 teaspoon cinnamon 1 teaspoon nutmeg 3 eggs 1/2 cup mild-flavored olive oil or canola oil 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 1 cup unsweetened applesauce 1/4 cup honey 1/2 cup whole milk 1 tablespoon finely grated orange zest 1 cup light…

Blueberry and Lemon Buttermilk Pound Cake
Recipes / February 2, 2019

Makes 2 cakes 3 sticks unsalted butter, at room temperature 4 cups cake flour, plus 1 tablespoon for blueberries 1 teaspoon salt 3 teaspoons baking powder 2 cups sugar 6 large eggs 1 tablespoon vanilla extract 1 1/2 cups buttermilk 1 1/2 cups blueberries Zest of lemon Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Butter and flour 2 (9 x 5 inch) loaf pans and set aside. Sift the flour with the salt and baking powder into a medium bowl and set aside. In a large bowl, use a mixer to cream the butter and sugar until pale in color, about 5 minutes on medium speed. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Then add the vanilla and beat until combined. Slowly add the flour mixture and buttermilk to the butter mixture, beating until only just combined. Toss the blueberries in flour and fold in with lemon zest. Pour batter into the prepared pans, making sure to divide the batter evenly between the two pans. Level tops with an offset spatula or smack on the counter a couple times. Bake for about 1 hour, until a toothpick comes out clean. Let the cake cool in the…

Ma’s Wicked Good Zucchini Bread
Recipes / January 25, 2019

Makes one 8 by 4-inch loaf (about 10 slices) Spray oil1 or 2 small zucchini1 cup raisins, optional3 cups whole wheat flour1 teaspoon baking soda1 teaspoon baking powder1 teaspoon ground cinnamonPinch of salt1 cup unsweetened almond milk*3/4 cup unsweetened applesauce1/2 cup sweetener, such as honey, maple syrup, or date paste**1/2 cup walnuts, toasted and chopped, optional Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Lightly coat the loaf pan with spray oil. Grate the zucchini on the large holes of a box grater into a large bowl (about 3 cups). Stir the raisins into the zucchini and set aside bowl. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt. In a small bowl, whisk together the milk, applesauce, sweetener, and walnuts. Add the milk mixture to the zucchini mixture and stir to combine, then stir in the flour mixture. The batter will be thick. Scrape the batter into the prepared loaf pan. Bake until golden brown and a knife inserted into the center comes out clean, about 1 hour. Let cool in the pan for 10 minutes before placing on a wire rack to cool completely. My notes: As I mentioned on Wednesday, this bread did…

Chocolate-Dipped Macaroons
Holidays , Recipes / December 14, 2018

Chocolate-Dipped MacaroonsMakes about 40 cookies 1/2 cup unsalted butter4 eggs3/4 cup sugar5 cups unsweetened shredded dried coconut3 tablespoons sweetened condensed milk1 vanilla bean, halved lengthwise* 1/2 teaspoon salt5 ounces semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped In a small saucepan, melt the butter over low heat, then set aside to cool slightly. In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs and sugar until well combined. Add the melted butter, coconut, and condensed milk. Scrape inside of vanilla beans and add seeds to bowl. Add salt. Stir together all of the ingredients until well combined. Let the mixture rest at room temperature for 15 minutes. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Use a 1 1/2 tablespoon ice cream scoop or 2 tablespoons to shape generous 1 1/2-tablespoon-size balls. Drop the coconut balls onto the prepared baking sheets, spacing the cookies evenly and arranging about 20 cookies on each sheet. Bake the cookies for about 20 minutes, until lightly golden. Transfer the baking sheets to wire racks and let cool for about 10 minutes, then carefully transfer the cookies to the racks and let cool completely. Melt the chocolate using a double boiler or in the microwave.  Dip the…

Deep Dish Skillet Brownie
Recipes / September 5, 2018

I’m a big fan of mug cakes. Few ingredients, quick to make, and no sharing! What’s not to love? I made this in a ramekin, but it still counts. 🙂 Deep Dish Skillet Brownie 2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons almond flour 1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons cocoa powder 1/2 teaspoon baking powder 1 tablespoon granulated sweetener of choice 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon ground flax or 1 large egg 1 tablespoon oil of choice 2 tablespoons milk of choice Chocolate chips, to top (can be sugar-free) Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease a mini skillet or small baking dish or ramekin and set aside. In a small mixing bowl, add the dry ingredients and mix well. Add in the oil and milk and stir until a batter is formed. Top the batter with chocolate chips and bake in the oven for 10 to 12 minutes, or until it’s just cooked in the center and the chocolate chips have melted. (Can cook in microwave, but might get gummy. Cook in 30-second intervals until desired consistency.) My notes: This wasn’t great. If you really need a sweet fix, it will do. It didn’t have the taste or texture of a brownie…

Snowy-Topped Brownie Drops
Recipes / May 30, 2018

I told you that we take brownies seriously in my family. Well, here are some brownies disguised as cookies. Delicious! Snowy-Topped Brownie Drops Makes about 20 cookies 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into about 10 pieces 8 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate 3/4 cup sugar 2 cold large eggs 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 1/2 teaspoon sea salt 3/4 cup all-purpose flour Powdered sugar, for dredging Coarsely chop 6 ounces of the chocolate and scatter it over the butter. Finely chop the remaining 2 ounces of chocolate and set it aside. Melt the 6 ounces of chocolate with the butter. (I just do this in the microwave.) Stir sugar into the melted chocolate and butter. One by one, add the eggs, whisking for a minute or two after each egg. Whisk in the vanilla and the salt, and then the flour. Stir in the finely chopped chocolate. Cover dough and refrigerate for at least 3 hours. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. Put some powdered sugar in a bowl. Using a medium scoop, scoop out level portions of dough or use a tablespoon to get rounded spoonfuls. Roll each into a…

Bonus Recipe: Classic Brownies
Recipes / May 26, 2018

I promised in my intro to Dorie’s Cookies, that I would share her brownie recipe. We take brownies seriously in our house, and our favorite recipe is Barefoot Contessa’s. The Contessa’s brownies manage to be super rich and fluffy all at the same time. I will say Dorie’s brownies are more on the traditional, fudgy side, but still satisfied our brownie cravings. In our house brownies don’t have nuts, and they certainly don’t have icing. You could add 1 cup of chopped walnuts to this recipe if you like, but if you want icing you’re on your own. Classic Brownies 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into chunks 6 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped 3/4 cup sugar 2 cold large eggs 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract 1/3 cup all-purpose flour Makes 16 brownies Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Grease an 8-inch square baking pan. Melt the butter and the chocolate together. Stir in the sugar. When the sugar is incorporated, beat the eggs in one at a time. Stir in the salt, followed by the vanilla. Add the flour all at once and gently stir and fold it in. Scrape the batter into…

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