July 27, 2009
I’ve learned while being out on maternity leave that there aren’t many things worth watching on daytime tv. You’ve got daytime talk shows, home improvement shows, and then there’s soaps of course. With not much to choose from, I’ve found myself watching Food Network a lot during the day while I’m just sitting and feeding Drew. And trust me, I do a lot of just sitting and feeding Drew. Try every two hours! He’s a hungry boy.
Anyway, while watching Food Network I’ve started making a list of new recipes I’d like to try. Several of the recipes have come from one of my favorite cooks, Ina Garten. I look forward to watching her show every day, Barefoot Contessa, because everything she makes always looks divine and she makes it all seem so effortless. Plus I think she and her husband are cute as a button. I saw this recipe on her show the other day and it really made my sweet tooth ache. When I finally got out to go the store yesterday I got all the ingredients to make it and baked it last night for dessert. It turned out so good but as Ina would say, what could be bad about brownies? I think this recipe has a deeper, richer, more chocolaty flavor than some brownie recipes I’ve made. The only thing that could probably make it better is some creamy vanilla ice cream.
6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter
3 1/4 cups (20 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips
3 extra-large eggs
1 cup sugar
1 tablespoon instant coffee granules
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup (4 ounces) chopped walnuts
2 to 3 tablespoons heavy cream
Grease and flour a 9-inch tart pan with removable sides. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Melt the butter in a bowl set over simmering water. Add 2 cups of the chocolate chips, remove from the heat, and stir until the chocolate melts. Set aside to cool completely.
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the eggs, sugar, coffee, and vanilla on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Stir in the cooled chocolate. In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, salt, 1 cup of the chocolate chips, and the walnuts. Fold the flour mixture into the batter until just combined. Pour into the pan and bake for 35 to 40 minutes, until the center is puffed (the top may crack). The inside will still be very soft. Cool to room temperature before removing the sides of the tart pan.
Melt the remaining 1/4 cup of chocolate chips with the heavy cream and drizzle on the tart. (I omitted)
Source: Food Network
April 21, 2009
Someone save me from the bags of ripe bananas in my freezer! I almost always have at least one banana left over from a bunch that just doesn’t get eaten before it’s too brown. I feel bad just throwing it away so that is how I have to come to have several bags of overly ripe bananas in my freezer. Every time I open the freezer door, there they sit and I always intend on making something with them. But we all know what often happens with the best of intentions. They normally turn into regular banana bread or muffins, but I wanted to make something a little different this time. I’ve had chocolate banana bread on my mind this week so today I set out to find a recipe. Joy of Baking has never steered me wrong with a recipe so when I found this one on their website I decided to give it a try. I didn’t have any white chocolate chips so I subbed semi sweet instead which just added to the rich chocolaty flavor. This is a very moist bread and a great alternative to regular banana bread.
Chocolate Banana Bread
1 3/4 cups (245 grams) all-purpose flour
1/4 cup (30 grams) Dutch-processed cocoa powder
1 cup (200 grams) granulated white sugar
1 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup (85 grams) white chocolate chips (I subbed semi sweet chocolate chips)
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 cup (113 grams) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
3 ripe bananas (approximately 1 pound or 454 grams), mashed well (about 1-1/2 cups)
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Turbinado or Demerara sugar (omitted)
July 29, 2008
It’s going to be 90 degrees today where I live so why am I still baking you ask. Maybe the heat has gone to my head or maybe it’s because I saw these blondies on Loves To Eat last week and just had to make them. Whatever the reason, these were great! Very quick to make, too. I’ll be saving this recipe when I want a great bar dessert other than brownies.
|1||cup pecans or walnuts (4 ounces)-I omitted these.|
|1 1/2||cups unbleached all-purpose flour (7 1/2 ounces)|
|1||teaspoon baking powder|
|1/2||teaspoon table salt|
|12||tablespoons unsalted butter ( 1 1/2 sticks), melted and cooled|
|1 1/2||cups packed light brown sugar (10 1/2 ounces)|
|2||large eggs , lightly beaten|
|4||teaspoons vanilla extract|
|6||ounces white chocolate chips (1 cup) or chopped bar, or 3 ounces each white chocolate and semisweet chocolate chips|
1. Adjust oven rack to middle position; heat oven to 350 degrees. Spread nuts on large rimmed baking sheet and bake until deep golden brown, 10 to 15 minutes. Transfer nuts to cutting board to cool; chop coarsely and set aside.
2. While nuts toast, cut 18-inch length foil and fold lengthwise to 8-inch width. Fit foil into length of 13 by 9-inch baking pan, pushing it into corners and up sides of pan; allow excess to overhang pan edges. Cut 14-inch length foil and fit into width of baking pan in same manner, perpendicular to first sheet (if using extra-wide foil, fold second sheet lengthwise to 12-inch width). Spray foil-lined pan with nonstick cooking spray.
3. Whisk flour, baking powder, and salt together in medium bowl; set aside.
4. Whisk melted butter and brown sugar together in medium bowl until combined. Add eggs and vanilla and mix well. Using rubber spatula, fold dry ingredients into egg mixture until just combined; do not overmix. Fold in chocolate and nuts and turn batter into prepared pan, smoothing top with rubber spatula.
5. Bake until top is shiny, cracked, and light golden brown, 22 to 25 minutes; do not overbake. Cool on wire rack to room temperature. Remove bars from pan by lifting foil overhang and transfer to cutting board. Cut into 2-inch squares
Source: Cook’s Illustrated
July 6, 2008
Go ahead. Call me crazy, but I just don’t like chocolate ice cream. I have on occasion eaten some Rocky Road or Triple Brownie, but as far as plain old chocolate ice cream. You can have it. Give me strawberry or vanilla any day. But my husband–he loves it. It’s his favorite ice cream and he could probably eat it by the buckets. Since he got me the Kitchen Aid ice cream attachment for my birthday, I figured I’d break it in by making him some of his favorite ice cream. I have actually never made homemade ice cream so I was looking for a super simple, idiot proof recipe for my first time. I came across this recipe online and figured I couldn’t screw it up too much. My husband upon finding out that I was making chocolate ice cream instantly wanted to taste test it for me, but I told him he had to wait for it to freeze first. Well, first thing this morning he dug right in with a spoon. And the results? “It tastes like chocolate ice cream!” So according to my husband, the chocolate ice cream connoisseur, this is a good recipe. I’m just happy that is was so easy and that it turned out! Now to make myself some strawberry.
Chocolate Ice Cream
(I doubled the following amounts)
5 tablespoons of cocoa
1 can (large) condensed milk
1/2 pint (250ml) milk
Mix together the milk and condensed milk. Dissolve the cocoa in a little hot water. When fully dissolved stir it into the milk/condensed milk mixture.
Transfer mixture into an ice cream maker and freeze according to manufacturer’s instructions.
(20-30 min in the KA ice cream maker)
May 27, 2008
I love it when a plan comes together. I think someone from the A-Team said that originally, but for the purpose of this post, this statement works for me too. : ) I have been wanting to make a “for real” cheesecake with my new spring form pan for a while now. And by for real I mean, homemade crust, homemade filling and baked in a spring form pan type of cheesecake. The ones I’ve made before were made with a pre-made crust so they weren’t truly homemade in my mind. I had the perfect excuse to make my “for real” cheesecake this weekend. Some friends of ours asked us to come over to help them with some projects in their new house and in exchange they were grilling out for us for dinner. I offered to bring a dessert, not because I wanted to be nice, but because I was secretly yearning to bake this cheesecake and I needed a reason to justify making it. (just kidding of course) Somehow I was stuck on making a peanut butter cheesecake but as usual, I had no recipe in mind. I googled peanut butter cheesecake and found a few recipes that were okay, but sounded more complicated than what I was wanting to do for my first for real cheesecake. So I decided to use a recipe I have used before but make my own crust and just add in what I wanted. I was nervous about how it would turn out since I’m pretty novice when it comes to cheesecakes, but thankfully it all worked out! It was very rich but very good. Definitely a keeper.
Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Cheesecake
3 tablespoons butter, melted
1 1/4 cups graham cracker crumbs (I used chocolate graham crackers)
1 tablespoon white sugar
3 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese
1 cup creamy peanut butter
3/4 cup white sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 bag semi-sweet chocolate chips
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
2. In a small bowl, combine the melted butter, graham cracker crumbs and 1 tablespoon sugar. Press into the bottom of a 9 inch springform pan. Bake in preheated oven for 10 minutes. Allow to cool.
3. In a large bowl, cream the 3/4 cup of sugar and cream cheese together until smooth. Stir in peanut butter until combined. Add eggs, one at a time, and vanilla. Pour into the spring form pan.
4. Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 45 minutes. Let cool. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
(I baked mine in a water bath to prevent cracking)
March 20, 2008
As I was starting to write this post tonight, I realized that my last post was also about brownies. I promise I really have made real food since my last post, just nothing very interesting. Other than that I have no real reason why my last two posts are about brownies other than P-M-S. Yep, those three letters can cause you to have some weird cravings. Too bad I’m not craving anything healthy. Oh well.
I was recently very flattered to receive an “E for Excellent” award on Cynthia Matzat’s blog. That’s how I first discovered her blog and some of her yummy recipes. One recipe on her blog caught my eye and it was this peanut butter brownie recipe. So when PMS rared its ugly head tonight, I knew it was the time to try out this recipe. I was not disappointed. These were so good! I added a 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips to the peanut butter batter because I just needed to have some chocolate. Thanks Cynthia for the award and for this great recipe!
Peanut Butter Brownies
5 tablespoons butter
1 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup peanut butter
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
(I added half a cup of semi sweet chocolate chips to the batter)
In a 3-quart pan over low heat, heat butter until melted. Remove from heat and stir in sugar, eggs, vanilla, flour, peanut butter, and baking powder until smoothly blended. Evenly spread batter in a buttered and floured 8-inch square pan. Bake in 350°F oven until edges feel firm to touch and begin to turn a shade darker, 25 to 30 minutes (but can take up to 40 minutes, depending on your oven). Run a knife between pan rim and baked brownie. Cool in pan on a rack. Cut into squares.
March 10, 2008
Mmm, here’s one recipe that combines two of my favorite kinds of desserts; brownies and cheesecake. My husband is the inspiration for me making these heavenly brownies. He started talking about cheesecake brownies yesterday and I realized I had not made these in years. In fact, the last time I made them they were from a box. 😛 So I asked my friends over at What’s Cooking for some suggestions and got some great recipes. I decided on this one from Baking Blonde. I can always count on her for great dessert recipes. I will say that the brownie part of this recipe is really thick and kinda of hard to work with but it was well worth it. They turned out so great!
Ghirardelli Award Winning Brownies
3/4 cup sugar
1 tsp pure vanilla
1/2 cup butter, melted
3/4 cup Ghirardelli Sweet Ground Chocolate and Cocoa (3/4 cup Hershey’s unsweetened cocoa powder)
2/3 cup unsifted flour
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup walnuts (I did not use)
1 cup Chocolate Chips (I used 1/2 semi sweet and 1/2 milk chocolate chips)
Preheat oven to 350.
Line 8×8 pan with foil and spray with PAM.
In bowl, stir together the eggs, sugar and vanilla. Add butter.
Sift Cocoa powder, flour, baking powder and salt. Stir into egg mixture.
Stir in chips (and nuts if using).
**Spread into pan and bake for 20-30 minutes until toothpick inserted in center comes out with a few crumbs.
Cheesecake Swirled Brownies
**If making cheesecake swirled brownies, use recipe above but only spread 2/3 batter into pan. Dollup cream cheese mixture over brownie batter in pan.
Dollup the remainin 1/3 batter on top of cheesecake mixture.
Run a knife through the brownie and cheesecake layers to create a pattern or swirls.
Bake in preheated oven for 25 minutes or until toothpick comes out with a few crumbs when inserted. Do NOT overbake
7 oz cream cheese, softened
1/3 cup sugar
2 TBS flour
1 tsp pure Vanilla
In bowl combine cream cheese, sugar, flour and vanilla beat until smooth. Add egg and beat just until combined.