October 12, 2014

Oatmeal, Walnut and Cranraisin Cookies

As much as I've been baking lately, I am so behind on my blogging.  I have the pictures and words in my head, but can't  make the time to blog.  Must. Focus. On. Blogging.

I've been trying to not keep making the same recipes, every single time.  For example, the  Best Ever Chocolate  Cake, Snickerdoodles, and Peanut  Butter Cookies. I make one of these, at least every other week. 

So keeping my promise to myself, I found a fun, flavorful, colorful recipe for cookies.  Oatmeal, Walnut and Cranraisin Cookies on the The Buttonwood Inn on Mt. Surprise Bed and Breakfast Country Inn's website.  

I figured it if they are good enough to be served at their bed and breakfast, I could have a small chance to duplicate their goodness.  Apparently, I was right.  They are delish.  Oatmeal-ey; Cranberrie-ey and Nutt-ey.  And it's like eating cookies for breakfast, but in cookie format and not in a bowl.  

I'm super excited to have found this recipe, now the challenge will be to not make them every week.  

Love milk, but love milk and cookies more.

Makes  bunches and bunches and bunches of cookies.

Not only delish, but pretty, too. 

May 18, 2014

Blackberry Cobbler

I know, I know...I haven't been blogging much lately.  I really haven't been baking much either.  I did make some Homemade Snickers Bars last week, though.  I have high goals starting on Friday...Oh!!!....I think I wanted to bake...cookies, cakes, something new...something, anything to get me started again.

I saw in the store that blackberries were freakishly inexpensive, so I grabbed at least 6 containers envisioning a weeks full of berries for lunch.  Hub has been out of town, and the Snickers Bars are too rich for him, so guilt hit and I decided to make him a blackberry cobbler. 

Now you are probably thinking, but wait...you've already made a Cherry Peach Cobbler, so how is this new?  Well, it is for me because I didn't use the same recipe because I was confused about the lack of juices/syrup so I started with something new.

Head to my cookbooks....nah...headed to my Pinterest page to see what I had.  I knew I had been hoarding recipes that would match my high goals.  Yep, I found one that I had pinned in the past.  Baron's Blackberry Cobbler

Super excited about this recipe.  It has great reviews and all I could do what test it and I'm happy that I did.  Definitely a keeper!


February 26, 2014

Banana Nut Chocolate Bread

Seriously, I love to blog and I love to bake...but so much time in between postings.  Darn you life.  This is a recipe that I've made a lot, in fact it is from one of my very first cookbooks, The Southern Living Cookbook

It's super easy and most importantly, I always have the ingredients on hand.  For some reason 95% of all banana bread recipes that I see all want me to add buttermilk.  Who has buttermilk on hand???  Nor would I attempt to make a version of buttermilk.  Adding vinegar, something so bitter, to milk, something so creamy and smooth is just wrong.

I also add nuts, either pecans or walnuts and always, because I can...chocolate chips.  Always.  Life is just better with chocolate.

My next test recipe will be this recipe, but it will be called Banana Nut French Toast.  Slices of this, made into a french toast sounds really delish.  Stay tuned for that.

But for now, we have this:

A banana nut chocolate chip loaf, with a caved in top and a teeny bit under cooked.  Tasty all the same.  Literally the first time this  has happened.  Clearly I was eager to get it done and blog about it.  Oh well.


February 2, 2014

Caramel Snickerdoodle Bars and Quinoa?

It's Superbowl Sunday, so what does that mean to me?  It means heads will roll, if I don't bake...something.  And when I say heads will roll, I mean mine.  Super hungry, Super excited Superbowl fanatics are cray cray at times, especially when it comes to their food selections during the game.

So I found something new, instead of baking the same Best Ever Chocolate Cake that I have been making at least two times a month.  But when something is awesome and well received, sometimes it's easier to just continue on with what is loved.  Talk about a rut.

I've missed blogging, so I was determined to find something new.  Allow me to introduce to you....drum roll please.... Caramel Snickerdoodle Bars. Seriously.  Just reading the name, made my mouth water.  Caramel. ♥ Snickerdoodles ♥  Both words I love, and more importantly, I love caramel and I love Snickerdoodles (and Goldendoodles).  I couldn't imagine them mixed together, and that was my first mistake.  I should have...years ago.

So if you check out the recipe, where Deborah from Taste and Tell, specifically says in the ingredients list:  dulce de leche (not sweetened condensed milk)....this is where I went to the store, and promptly purchased sweetened condensed milk.  Who Does That????  (Me).  I proceeded to prepare the recipe as planned and immediately noticed that the sweetened condensed milk was not setting...in denial, I proceeded forward....even as far as cooling an extra hour in the fridge and even putting it in the freezer.  Of course, it came out runny as all heck...super sweet and rich and definitely edible, but not at all what it should have been.  Bar of Caramel Snickerdoodle Bars - meet the Trash Can.

Back to store to get the dulce de leche and not sweetened condensed milk and remake it because I so badly wanted to taste this luxury dessert.

Well. Worth. It.  It's rich, creamy, sticky and amazing.  It's super intense, like my Homemade Snickers Bar, but again, Well. Worth. It.  

I also tried to re-create one of my BFF's Quinoa Salad recipes.  Because apparently you should have more than just desserts as a Superbowl party.  What??????  I failed to match hers, but I did kinda create one of my own.  It's good, super healthy and most important...it's pretty.

Pretty makes me happy.


November 26, 2013

Mint Chocolate Chip Cookies

Everything is better with the taste of mint.  I took a family favorite, Original Nestle® Toll House® Chocolate Chip Cookies, and instead of using a bag of chocolate chips, I substituted a bag of Andes Baking Chips which is essentially chopped up Andes Mint Candy, which are like crack to me.  That and the Christmas Peppermint ones. 

The cookies turned out amazing, and I'm not sure I can go back to not adding the mints.  What I have found out though is not *everyone* likes mint. What????  So for the sake of being kind, I'll eat the entire bag of mints, alone in a closet, not add them, but add the *normal* chocolate chips.

I also made another family favorite.  The Best Ever Chocolate Cake and substituted the bag of chocolate chips for a bag of the Andes Baking Chips.  Again, I learned that not *everyone* is crazy for mint like I am.  Those that love mint, love the cake even more than before.

I also now see by looking at the picture of the second cake, I had not learning the art of cropping my photos. 

It was a busy baking this weekend.  It was perfect baking weather and the holidays are so close.  I baked Snickerdoodles (and no, I didn't get a Golden Doodle)

And finally, to round out the amazing scents that were already going on in our home, I made some Peanut Butter Cookies.  This recipe makes a lot and it says it's okay to freeze.  Normally there are not enough to freeze, but since I made three different types of cookies, I froze some.  I'm skeered though...frozen cookies, thawed...how can they be fresh and taste like they came right out of the oven?

No mint added to the Peanut Butter Cookies or the Snickerdoodles, but that's an interesting idea.  Everyone has their favorites, and it's always fun to me to hear what they are. 


November 10, 2013

Butterscotch-Pecan Blondies

Hmmmmmmmm....my first reaction to new things, whether baking or buying a new book or new product is to read the reviews.  But today, I was just so super excited to make some treats for my husband, I just ripped this out of my magazine and went straight to the kitchen and whipped up these Butterscotch-Pecan Blondies.

I'm sad to say they are dry.  Dry, dry, dry.  Edible, yes, but mouthwatering, gotta have more than one, stand over the sink, no need for a plate and gotta keep the recipe good?  Nope.  And now, as I go back to the recipe to what other people wrote someone else mentioned they are dry. 

I repeat, they are edible.  Hub will eat them, slathered in ice cream and my office peeps will eat them, or at least eat one...based on the email they will get from me warning them that they are *dry*;  and they already know they are *testers* for me, so it's always a hit or miss for them.

In reality, the recipe is very close to these Chewy Toffee Bars, so I will just stick with them.  They are always a success.

So, my recommendation, if you are looking for some blonde brownies, try the Chewy Toffee Bars!

P.S.   The good news for Hub is that I also made him some Honey Nut Wheat Bread!  Which is always 100% amazing.  And...it makes the house smell luscious! 

October 6, 2013

Caramel Apple Monkey Bread

Today brought the first *cold* day of the fall for us.  It also brought the first *fall* recipe.

Every word I love.  Caramel Apple ♥ Monkey (who doesn't love monkeys???)
♥ Bread ♥ (love my carbs)

Add all of the words together and you get Caramel Apple Monkey Bread  

Call me a rebel, but I diverted from the recipe.  I added nuts, pecans to be exact.  We loved it.  It was a bit tedious but definitely worth it.  Serious, it was like a Caramel Apple wrapped in a dough.  Drenched in caramel sauce.