Monday, December 27, 2010

Chocolate Chip Raspberry Bars

By now it's well known that Dennis loves the combination of raspberry and chocolate chips. Of course in the winter it's a bit hard to get fresh raspberries so raspberry preserves will have to do.

I freaked out a bit when I first started spreading the bottom layer of the dough as it was extremely thin. I didn't think there was any way I could fill the entire pan with it. However, I dipped a knife in some water and that helped spread the dough evenly. These bars have a really nice contrast between the sweetness of the raspberry preserves and the slight bitterness of the chocolate. Plus they look rather attractive if I do say so myself.

Chocolate Chip Raspberry Bars (from Favorite Brand Name Cookies)

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 egg, beaten
1/4 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
3/4 cup raspberry preserves
1-2 cups chocolate chips (use your judgement - it calls for 1 cup but I'm sure I put in more than that...)

Heat oven to 400 degrees. Grease 13x9 baking pan.

Stir together flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in large bowl. Cut in butter with pastry blender or fork until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Add egg, milk and vanilla; beat at medium speed until well blended.

Reserve 1/2 cup mixture for topping. Spread remaining mixture onto bottom of prepared pan. This layer will be very thin - dip a knife in some water to help you spread the dough. Spread preserves evenly over dough then sprinkle chocolate chips over top. Drop reserved dough by 1/2 teaspoons over chips.

Bake 25 minutes or until golden. Cool completely in pan on wire rack before cutting into bars. Make about 32 bars.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Toasted Marshmallow Brownies

I came across this recipe on one of my favorite cooking blogs (Culinary in the Desert) and adapted it for our tastes.

The original recipe was called Rocky Road Brownies and added chopped nuts in addition to the marshmallows to the topping. We're not big fans of nuts in our brownies though so I left them out. Also, instead of just baking the brownies to puff up the marshmallows I set the oven to broil for a minute or two, giving the marshmallows a nice golden hue.

These are Dennis' favorite brownies, high praise indeed. When I asked him for his opinion he said the best way to enjoy them is heated up in microwave for a few seconds, making them even more gooey and delicious.

Toasted Marshmallow Brownies (adapted from Everyday Food)

8 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into cubes
12 ounces chopped bittersweet chocolate, divided (I used a mix of bittersweet and semi-sweet since that’s what I had on hand)
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup packed light-brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup miniature marshmallows

Preheat oven to 350.

In a microwave-safe bowl, add butter and 6 ounces chocolate - heat in the microwave just until the chocolate softens and the butter has melted. Stir until smooth; if there are still chunks of chocolate, gently continue heating at 30 second intervals until the mixture is smooth when stirred.

Stir in sugars and salt into the melted chocolate. Add eggs and mix until combine - fold in flour. Scoop the mixture into a 9 x 9 pan coated with nonstick spray. Bake until a toothpick placed in center comes out with moist crumbs attached, about 20 to 30 minutes.

Remove from oven - quickly sprinkle the top with the remaining chocolate and marshmallows. Place back into the oven until the marshmallows start to puff, about 3 minutes. Set the oven to broil and keep the brownies in there until the marshmallows turn golden brown, 1-2 minutes. Remove and place on a wire rack to cool completely before cutting into squares.

Makes 12 to 16 servings.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

One of the many things my mom instilled in me is a love of pumpkin baked goods. Growing up we baked a lot of pumpkin breads and pumpkin muffins, but never tried our hand at something more dessert-like. So when my mom's birthday rolled around (on Halloween, appropriately enough) I decided to bake her pumpkin cookies.

This recipe comes from Libby's so I figured it had to be good. The original recipe calls for drizzling a glaze over the cookies but I skipped that step. I thought it might be too sweet and I'm glad I left it off. I think maybe I'm more used to pumpkin baked goods for breakfast but I would've liked these better if they were just a bit less sweet. I think next time I'd throw in a bit of ground cloves to help balance the sweetness.

Other than that though, these cookies really were great. They were very soft and tasted great. My mom really seemed to enjoy them, so that's all that matters. Happy birthday Mom!

Old-Fashioned Soft Pumpkin Cookies (from Libby’s)

Makes 36 cookies


  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (I used half white whole wheat flour and half regular flour)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter (1 stick), softened
  • 1 cup pumpkin
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350° F. Grease baking sheets or use Silpat mats.

Combine flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt in medium bowl. Beat sugar and butter in large mixer bowl until well blended. Beat in pumpkin, egg and vanilla extract until smooth. Gradually beat in flour mixture. Drop by rounded tablespoon onto prepared baking sheets.

Bake for 15 to 18 minutes or until edges are firm. Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Chocolate Cherry Cookies

I love reading light cookie recipes, trying to figure out how they make them light. Usually it means that the serving size is half of what a normal person eats, or that something not so good for you (like oil) is swapped out for something more virtuous (like applesauce). Not that there's anything wrong with this, of course. But I don't make cookies to be healthy. Have you met my husband? I need to try my hardest to fatten him up! :)

So this recipe for Chocolate Cherry Cookies from Cooking Light definitely needed some tweaking. First off, the recipe says it makes 60 cookies. I have a feeling those cookies would be fairly small so I just scooped them out using my normal cookie scooper. Also, it called for 6 tablespoons of chocolate chips. That amount just sounds so...sad. So I upped that significantly. I'm not sure exactly how much I used - probably closer to 1/3 a bag.

These cookies give you a nice contrast between tart and sweet, though Dennis said he'd like even more chocolate chips next time to offset the cherries. So next time I'll up to 1/2 a bag, at least. You can never have too many chocolate chips.

Chewy Chocolate-Cherry Cookies
(from Cooking Light)

60 cookies if you're going for light, otherwise closer to 40

2 cups all-purpose flour
2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa

1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups sugar
1 cup butter, softened
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1 1/3 cup dried tart cherries
6 tablespoons semisweet chocolate for light cookies, otherwise put in as many chocolate chips as your heart desires
Cooking spray

Preheat oven to 350°.

Lightly spoon flour into a dry measuring cup; level with a knife. Combine flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and salt, stirring with a whisk. Place sugar and butter in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at high speed until well blended. Add vanilla and egg; beat well. With mixer on low speed, gradually add flour mixture. Beat just until combined. Fold in cherries and chocolate chips.

Drop by tablespoonfuls 2 inches apart onto baking sheets coated with cooking spray. Bake at 350° for 9-12 minutes or just until set. Remove from oven; cool on pans 5 minutes. Remove from pans; cool completely on wire racks.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Chocolate Chip Caramel Cookies

It's hard to improve upon a chocolate chip cookie but I was looking for a way to jazz it up a bit. I was thinking caramel so after plugging "chocolate chip caramel cookie" into Google I came up with the following recipe from Gourmet.

The most labor-intensive part of this recipe is first unwrapping all of the caramels, then chopping them up. It gave my rather pathetic knife skills quite a workout. These cookies were gobbled up eagerly by Dennis and my co-workers. I recommend heating them up before eating, only because the caramel does harden a bit so it might be hard to chew. Plus warm chocolate chip cookies always taste better, don't they?

Chocolate Chip Caramel Cookies (From Gourmet)

Makes about 50 cookies


  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter
  • 1 t vanilla
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 10 ounces semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 25 caramels such as Kraft, chopped coarse (about 1 cup)

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Mix caramels with about 1 T of measured flour and then chop caramel into small pieces. Set aside.

In a bowl whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. In another bowl with an electric mixer cream butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition, and beat in flour mixture.

Stir chocolate and caramels into dough and drop rounded tablespoons about 2 inches apart onto baking sheets. Bake cookies in batches in middle of oven 10 to 12 minutes, or until golden. Cool cookies on baking sheets on racks until firm. Cookies keep in airtight containers 5 days.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Marshmallow Crunch Brownies

So at this point it's fairly obvious that Dennis loves chocolate and marshmallows. So a recipe that combines those flavors with brownies and peanut butter gives you (in my opinion) a pretty perfect dessert.

This is another recipe that called for espresso powder to make the chocolate flavor just a bit more intense. It also originally called for bittersweet chocolate in the brownies and milk chocolate for the crispy topping. I just subbed in semi-sweet chocolate for both. Pretty much anytime a recipe calls for milk chocolate I'll use a darker chocolate in its place.

Everyone loved these. The contrasting textures (chewy brownie base, crunchy Rice Krispie topping) and chocolate/peanut butter flavor combination makes them hard to beat.

Marshmallow Crunch Brownie Bars (Adapted from Culinary in the Desert)

For the brownie layer

4 ounces unsweetened chocolate
11 tablespoons (about 2/3 cup) unsalted butter
7.5 ounces (about 1 1/4 cups) chopped semi-sweet chocolate, divided
1/2 teaspoon instant espresso powder
1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 large eggs
2 cups granulated sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla

For the topping

10.5 ounces miniature marshmallows
9 ounces (about 1 1/2 cups) chopped semi-sweet chocolate
1 cup smooth peanut butter (to measure the peanut butter you can spray the measuring cup with cooking spray and the peanut butter will slide right out)
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 1/2 cups Rice Krispies cereal

To prepare the brownies

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

In a medium saucepan, add unsweetened chocolate, butter and 4.5 ounces (about 3/4 cup) semi-sweet chocolate - melt over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until smooth. Remove from the heat, stir in espresso powder and set aside to cool for 5 minutes

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt.

In a large bowl , whisk together eggs. Whisk in sugar and vanilla until well combined. Gradually add melted chocolate mixture, stirring until combined and smooth. Add dry ingredients and stir just until combined - fold in remaining 3 ounces (1/2 cup) bittersweet chocolate.

Scoop batter into a 9" x 13" baking pan coated with nonstick spray, smoothing the top with a spatula. Place into the oven and bake until a toothpick placed near the corner of the pan comes out with moist crumbs attached, about 25 to 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and immediately scatter the marshmallows evenly over the top. Place pan back into the oven to soften the marshmallows, about 3 more minutes.

To prepare the topping

Meanwhile, in a medium saucepan, add semi-sweet chocolate, peanut butter and butter - heat over low heat, stirring, until smooth and combined. Remove from the heat and stir in Rice Krispies until thoroughly coated. Set aside and allow to cool for 3 to 5 minutes. Spread mixture evenly over the marshmallow layer on top of the brownies. Place pan into the refrigerator and chill until firm before cutting.

Makes about 24 bars.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Fudge Brownies

I've been on the search for a homemade brownie recipe that's as good as the one you get from the box. You know the kind - chewy, chocolaty, the perfect dessert to top with a scoop of ice cream. Finally, success!

The secret ingredient in these brownies is espresso powder. Apparently this ingredient is hard to find and can be expensive. So rather than shell out the big bucks for it I just purchased some instant espresso in the international foods aisle at Wegmans. It worked fine and was about half the price.

These brownies were a hit with Dennis and my co-workers. They all agreed that the chocolate in the brownies really came through. I asked Dennis for any additional comments and he said the consistency was perfect and also requested that I add them to the regular baking rotation. Sounds like a winner to me.

Fudge Brownies (from King Arthur Flour)

* 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter

* 2 1/4 cups sugar

* 4 large eggs

* 1 1/4 cups Double-Dutch Dark Cocoa or Dutch-process cocoa

* 1 teaspoon salt

* 1 teaspoon baking powder

* 1 teaspoon espresso powder

* 1 tablespoon vanilla extract

* 1 1/2 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour

* 2 cups chocolate chips


1) Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a 9" x 13" pan

2) In a medium-sized microwave-safe bowl, or in a saucepan set over low heat, melt the butter, then add the sugar and stir to combine. Return the mixture to the heat (or microwave) briefly, just until it's hot (about 110°F to 120°F), but not bubbling; it'll become shiny looking as you stir it. Heating this mixture a second time will dissolve more of the sugar, which will yield a shiny top crust on your brownies.

3) While the sugar heats a second time, crack the 4 eggs into a bowl, and beat them with the cocoa, salt, baking powder, espresso powder, and vanilla till smooth.

4) Add the hot butter/sugar mixture, stirring until smooth.

5) Add the flour and chips, again stirring until smooth. Note: If you want the chips to remain intact in the baked brownies, rather than melting in, let the batter cool in the bowl for about 20 minutes before stirring in the chips.

6) Spoon the batter into a lightly greased 9" x 13" pan.

7) Bake the brownies for about 30 minutes, until a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean, or with just a few moist crumbs clinging to it. The brownies should feel set on the edges, and the center should look very moist, but not uncooked. Remove them from the oven and cool on a rack before cutting and serving.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Raspberry Chocolate Chip Scones

Dennis finally ate all of the blueberry crumb muffins so I had the task of coming up with another breakfast food. I came across this recipe for Raspberry Chocolate Chip scones and was intrigued. I've never made scones before but this had Dennis's favorite flavor combination so I couldn't resist.

I used frozen raspberries since fresh raspberries aren't really in season now. I think they worked out fine - it just made the dough really cold and I had to work quickly before they started to completely defrost.

I definitely don't think they turned out perfect. Dennis said the texture was good, though the outside was a bit chewy. I also didn't do the best job cutting them. I told him some are for when he's a little hungry and some are for when he's very hungry... So next time I'll definitely try to cut it in more even portions. But I don't think they turned out too bad for my first scone attempt.

Chocolate Chip Raspberry Scones (from Joy of Baking)

2 cups all purpose flour (I used ½ all-purpose, ½ white whole wheat)

1/3 cup granulated white sugar

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold and cut into pieces

2 ounces dark chocolate chunks or chips (about 1/3 cup)

3/4 cup fresh or frozen raspberries

1/2 cup plain yogurt

1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

1 large egg, lightly beaten

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F and place rack in middle of oven. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Cut the butter into small pieces and blend into the flour mixture with a pastry blender or two knives. The mixture should look like coarse crumbs. Stir in the chocolate chunks (chips) and raspberries. In a small measuring cup whisk together the yogurt, vanilla extract, and egg. Add this mixture to the flour mixture and stir just until the dough comes together. Do not over mix.

Transfer to a lightly floured surface and knead the dough gently four or five times and then pat, or roll, the dough into a circle that is about 7 inches round and about 11/2 inches thick. Cut the dough into eight triangles. Place the scones on the baking sheet.

Bake for about 18 to 20 minutes or until golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Remove from oven and place on a wire rack.

Makes 8 scones.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Homemade Mallomars

Who doesn't love marshmallows and chocolate? No one, which I guess is one reason s'mores are so popular. This is a less messy version of s'mores, sort of a takeoff on Mallomars. The original recipe calls for actually dipping the entire cookie in chocolate but I chose instead to drizzle chocolate over them. I thought it made them look pretty, plus I had a fear of the cookies falling into the chocolate. I'm clumsy like that. Dennis and my co-workers all agreed that these cookies taste just like Mallomars. Apparently even the cookie itself is a close facsimile.

One last note - I doubled the recipe but ended up with only about 20 cookies. I didn't make them huge so I'm not sure why I got so few cookies. Not a big deal since I have a feeling I'll be making them again soon.

Chocolate-Covered Marshmallow Cookies (aka Mallomars)

Adapted from Everyday Food


1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons all purpose flour
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons whole wheat flour
1/4 teaspoon coarse salt
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
3 tablespoons packed, light brown sugar
1 large egg
9 large marshmallows, halved
9 oz semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350, with racks in upper and lower thirds.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flours, salt, baking soda, baking powder, and cinnamon. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat butter and sugar on high, scraping down sides of bowl as needed, until light, 4 minutes. Add egg and beat to combine, scraping down bowl as needed. With mixer on low, gradually add flour mixture and beat until combined.

Drop dough by tablespoonfuls, 3 inches apart on two parchment lined baking sheets. With the bottom of a measuring cup dipped in flour, flatten cookies to 2 inches in diameter. (I misread this and used a knife dipped in water instead. That worked fine also). Bake until dry and set, 7 minutes, rotating sheets halfway through. Remove from oven and top each cookie with a marshmallow half. Bake until marshmallows are soft, 2 minutes.

Remove from oven and, with a metal spatula, gently flatten each marshmallow. Let cookies cool completely on sheets on wire racks.

Place chocolate in a heat safe bowl, and melt in the microwave or by placing bowl over a pot of simmering water. Stir chocolate until smooth. Drizzle chocolate over cookies and put them back on the wire racks set over the cookie sheets.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Mexican Hot Chocolate Cookies

I've never had Mexican hot chocolate. I'm guessing it's like regular hot chocolate, maybe with a bit more kick? Regardless, it's hard to go wrong with any recipe that references hot chocolate. Even if the temperature has been in the 90's the past few days...

These cookies reminded us of Snickerdoodles, only with a subtle chocolate flavor. Dennis actually wanted even more chocolate flavor and asked if next time I could add chocolate chips. I thought they were good as is but he is the cookie expert.

The original recipe gives you the option of adding in some chili powder but I left it out. Feel free to try it out if you're feeling adventurous.

Mexican Hot Chocolate Cookies (from Everyday Food)
Makes 32

  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 teaspoons cream of tartar
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 3/4 cups sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder (optional)
Preheat oven to 400 degrees, with racks in upper and lower thirds. In a medium bowl, sift together flour, cocoa powder, cream of tartar, baking soda, and salt. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat butter and 1 1/2 cups sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Scrape down side of bowl. Add eggs and beat to combine. With mixer on low, gradually add flour mixture and beat until combined.

In a small bowl, combine remaining 1/4 cup sugar, cinnamon, and chile powder (if using). Using heaping tablespoons, form balls of dough and roll in cinnamon-sugar mixture. Place, about 3 inches apart, on two parchment-lined baking sheets. Bake until cookies are set in center and begin to crack, about 10 minutes, rotating sheets halfway through. Let cookies cool on sheets on wire racks 5 minutes, then transfer cookies to racks to cool completely. (Store in an airtight container, up to 1 week.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Blueberry Streusel Muffins

I'm not a blueberry muffin person. I like my blueberries straight out of the carton, or in blueberry pancakes. Dennis, on the other hand, never eats blueberries on their own (thanks to his Grandma overfeeding them to him when he was young) but likes blueberry muffins. He also loves sugar and butter (who doesn't?), so when I found this recipe that tops the muffins with a butter-sugar streusel I had high hopes.

These muffins are what blueberry muffins should be - buttery, moist, studded with delicious blueberries. Oh, and the streusel topping definitely doesn't hurt either.

Blueberry Streusel Muffins (adapted from Cook’s Country)

Makes 12


1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1/3 cup packed dark brown sugar

1/3 cup granulated sugar

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Pinch salt

7 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted


4 Tablespoons unsalted butter , melted and cooled slightly

2 cups all-purpose flour (I used 1 cup all-purpose and 1 cup white whole wheat and no one was the wiser)

1 large egg

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 cup granulated sugar

1 teaspoon grated lemon zest

1/2 cup buttermilk*

1 tablespoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 cups frozen blueberries

1. For the streusel: Combine flour, sugars, cinnamon, and salt in bowl. Drizzle with melted butter and toss with fork until evenly moistened and mixture forms large chunks with some pea-sized pieces throughout.

2. For the muffins: Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 375 degrees. Spray 12-cup muffin tin. Whisk egg in medium bowl until pale and evenly combined, about 30 seconds. Add vanilla, sugar, and zest and whisk vigorously until thick, about 30 seconds. Slowly whisk in melted butter; add buttermilk and whisk until combined.

3. Reserve 1 tablespoon flour. Whisk remaining flour, baking powder, and salt in large bowl. Fold in egg mixture until nearly combined. Toss blueberries with reserved flour and fold into batter until just combined.

4. Divide batter in muffin tin and top with streusel. Bake until light golden brown and toothpick inserted into center of muffin comes out with few dry crumbs attached, 23 to 27 minutes. Cool muffins in tin for 20 minutes, then carefully transfer muffins to rack to cool completely.

*If you don’t have buttermilk you can substitute 1 cup milk with 1 Tablespoon lemon juice. Just let it sit for about 10 minutes then use ½ cup for the muffins. Also, I’ve done this with soy milk and it works fine too.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Chocolate Chip Cookies

It's hard to beat a good chocolate chip cookie. But on the other hand, it's hard to make the perfect one. Everyone has their preferences (chewy, crispy, nuts, no nuts) so I guess you can never please everyone. But I know that Dennis likes chewy chocolate chip cookies, and those are my preference too. Also, nuts will never make an appearance in my cookies - it's all about the chocolate, baby!

This recipe comes from the back of the Ghiradelli chocolate chip bag. I basically stuck to the recipe though I did try some different things. I left the butter out to soften slightly, and also kept the eggs at room temperature for about 45 minutes. I did find that the batter came together easier and I didn't have to worry about over-mixing it. Also, in between batches I put the batter back in the fridge to keep it cold and also made sure that to cool the trays in between batches so the cookies didn't spread too much. There, that's all my cookie wisdom...

Ghirardelli Chocolate Chip Cookies
Yield: 4 dozen cookies
  • 11 1/2 ounce(s) Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 2 1/4 cup unsifted flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

Heat oven to 375ºF.

Stir flour with baking soda and salt; set aside. In large mixing bowl, beat butter with sugar and brown sugar at medium speed until creamy and lightened in color. Add eggs and vanilla, one at a time. Mix on low speed until incorporated. Gradually blend dry mixture into creamed mixture. Stir in chocolate chips. Drop by tablespoon onto ungreased cookie sheets. Bake for 9 to 11 minutes or until golden brown.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Dark Chocolate and Cherry Brownies

Apparently I've been in a brownie mode recently. First raspberry, now cherry. This was a little different from the previous recipe, though. This actually came from Cooking Light though they definitely didn't taste light. I find that for light recipes a lot of the lightness usually means that the serving size is smaller than what you'd normally eat. So if you can get 16 servings from this then they're light. Otherwise, not really. ;)

Compared to the raspberry chocolate brownies these were definitely less dense and more gooey. We felt they could have actually used more cherry flavor so next time I might try adding some more cherry preserves or even mix in some dried cherries to bring the flavor out.

Dark Chocolate and Cherry Brownies


  • Cooking spray
  • 3.4 ounces all-purpose flour (about 3/4 cup)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup cherry preserves
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 5 tablespoons butter
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 large egg white
  • 1/3 cup semisweet chocolate chips


1. Preheat oven to 350°.

2. Line a 9-inch square baking pan with parchment paper; coat with cooking spray.

3. Weigh or lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour, 1 cup sugar, unsweetened cocoa, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl; stir with a whisk. Combine cherry preserves, 1/3 cup water, and butter in a small saucepan; bring to a boil. Add preserves mixture to flour mixture; stir well. Add egg and egg white; stir until smooth. Stir in semisweet chocolate chips. Scrape batter into prepared pan. Bake at 350° for 25 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out with a few moist crumbs. Cool in pan on wire rack.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Raspberry Brownies

Dennis's absolute favorite flavor combination is raspberry and chocolate. He's tried it in every possible form. Chocolate bars, ice cream, even beer. So when I came across a recipe that combined brownies with raspberry jam I had high hopes.

I did make a few modifications to the original recipe. It called for nuts, but I know most people don't like nuts in their brownies so I left them out. The chocolate chips were also supposed to be a mix of white chocolate and semi-sweet but I used all bittersweet. So just use whichever chocolate is your favorite (or what you have in your cabinet which is what I did).

Dennis gave the brownies two big thumbs up. He recommends heating them up a bit in the microwave so the chocolate chips on top melt a bit. They're pretty rich so you probably can just have one and satisfy your sweet tooth. Though a scoop of ice cream on top wouldn't hurt either...

Raspberry Brownie Recipe

3/4 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup unsweetened baking cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 stick (1/2 cup) salted butter, softened
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
3 large eggs, divided
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2/3 cup raspberry jam
1 2/3 cups chocolate chips (semi-sweet or bittersweet would be fine)

Step 1: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Step 2: Lightly grease an 8 x 8 x 2-inch baking pan; set aside.
Step 3: In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa, and salt; set side.
Step 4: In a large bowl, with an electric mixer beat together butter, brown sugar, granulated sugar, and vanilla extract until creamy.
Step 5: Add 2 eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each one.
Step 6: Gradually beat in flour mixture.
Step 7: Spread 1 cup of batter into prepared pan.
Step 8: Stir jam until smooth. Drizzle over batter.
Step 10: Beat remaining egg into reserved batter.
Step 11: Stir in 1 cup of chocolate chips.
Step 12: Spread batter carefully over top of jam layer..
Step 13: Sprinkle remaining chips over top.
Step 14: Bake for 30-33 minutes or until center is set. Cool completely before cutting onto bars.
Makes 16 brownies.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Snickerdoodle Blondies

I never really knew what a Snickerdoodle was until a few years ago. When I realized they didn't actually contain Snickers I dismissed them. But now that I'm older and wiser I can appreciate the simplicity of cinnamon and sugar to make a cookie that's not overly sweet.

So for another of our Christmas treats I found a recipe for Snickerdoodle Blondies. If blondies are good, topping them with cinnamon and sugar can only make them better, right? Um, definitely! Plus at least with bar cookies you don't have to worry so much about them coming out perfectly round. Not to say that I haven't had issues getting bar cookies out of the pan without some of them falling apart but that's for another post.

If you want to make these even more festive I could see replacing some of the sugar with colored sprinkles. Red for Christmas, orange for Halloween...I love customizable treats!

Snickerdoodle Blondies (adapted from Dozen Flours)

2 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon grated or ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups packed brown sugar
1 cup butter, room temperature
2 eggs, at room temperature
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 teaspoons cinnamon
a pinch nutmeg

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease and/or line a 9×13 inch pan. Combine the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt and set aside. In large bowl, beat together butter and brown sugar for 3-5 minutes. Add in the eggs one at a time, then the vanilla, and beat until smooth. Stir in the flour mixture until well blended. Spread evenly in prepared pan (mixture will be somewhat sticky, so you may want to use a greased spatula or your hands). Combine the granulated sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg in a little bowl. Evenly sprinkle cinnamon sugar mixture over the top of the batter. Bake 25-30 minutes or until surface springs back when gently pressed. Cool before cutting. Makes 20-24 bars.