Friday, October 31, 2014

Oreo Rice Krispies Treats


Last week my husband and I were invited to our Halloween block party.  I wanted to make a sweet treat to bring with us, like the kids need more sugar.  I found this recipe and wanted to make it with Halloween Oreo's instead of regular ones to make them more festive.  This recipe is super fun because it combines two delicious childhood favorites.  I don't think ill ever make plain Rice Krispies Treats again after trying these.  Hope everyone has a fun and safe Halloween!

Happy Halloween

Oreo Rice Krispies Treats - Adapted from Chef-in-Training
Yield: 18 Rice Krispies Treats
6 Cups Rice Krispies Cereal
22 Regular Oreos, chopped (I used halloween oreos)
5 Cups Mini Marshmallows (or 1 bag)
3 Tablespoon Butter - unsalted
White chocolate for drizzle, optional

  1. Spray a 9x13 dish with cooking spray - Or line pan with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl, pour measured Rice Krispies Cereal.
  3. Chop and mash Oreos. You can do this by putting them in a ziplock bag to help keep the mess under control. You want the Oreos to be a variety of sizes from chunky to finely crushed.
  4. Add Oreos to Rice Krispies cereal and stir to combine.
  5. In a medium sauce pan, heat butter and marshmallows together over medium heat, stirring constantly, until they melt together.
  6. Pour melted marshmallows over cereal and oreos and use a spatula sprayed with non-stick cooking spray to quickly combine all the ingredients.
  7. As soon as all the cereal is combined, spread mixture into the prepared 9×13″ dish. Use the spatula to press the mixture around the dish, and flatten as needed.
  8. Let sit until completely cooled. NOTE: When the rice krispies treats and cooled I drizzled mine with some white chocolate and let it set until it hardened for a pretty finish.
  9. Enjoy!!

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Salted Caramel Chocolate Chip Cookies


While walking the isles of the grocery store, I came across the new Toll House Delightfulls - chocolate chips filled with different flavors.  I decided I would buy a bag of the caramel filled chocolate chips and use them in a recipe.  When I stumbled across the recipe for these cookies I wanted to make them with caramel bits like it calls for but after an unsuccessful shopping trip, I figured I would substitute some of the caramel bits for the caramel Delightful chocolate chips along with a few caramels cut up into small pieces.   

These cookies turned out amazing.  I am always nervous about sprinkling too much salt on top but I am getting better at it.  I passed these out to the neighbors and they were gobbled up immediately.  One of the neighbor kids tried to pay me a dollar for the cookies I gave to this family.  I just ran away...

The Toll House Delightfulls are bigger chocolate chips then normal, but I didn't think they added much flavor to the cookie and I didn't see any caramel in the middle when it bit into it.  If you are going to make these cookies I would recommend trying to find the Kraft caramel bits - I think you can get them at target, not 100% sure on that though.  If not, cutting up caramels work too.  About 10 or 12 caramels (made for baking) is about all you need.

Hope you enjoy these cookies as much as we all did!  

Salted Caramel Chocolate Chip Cookies - Adapted from Two Peas And Their Pod
Yield: 3 dozen cookies
2 Cups Flour
2 Teaspoons Cornstarch
1 Teaspoon Baking Soda
1/2 Teaspoon Sea Salt
3/4 Cup Unsalted Butter - room temperature
1 Cup Brown Sugar
1/4 Cup Granulated Sugar
1 Large Egg - room temperature
2 Teaspoons Vanilla Extract
1 Cup Chocolate Chips - I used 1/2 Cup Semi Sweet Chocolate chips and 1/2 Cup Toll House DelightFulls - Milk Chocolate filled with caramel
1/2 Cup Kraft Caramel Bits - I could not find these so I cut up about 6 caramels into little squares
Sea salt, for sprinkling on cookies

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Line a large baking sheet with a Silpat baking mat or parchment paper and set aside.   I like to use my AirBake pans that do NOT need a baking mat or parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk flour, cornstarch, baking soda and sea salt together. Set aside.
  3.  In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream together butter and sugars until smooth and creamy, about 3 minutes. Add egg and vanilla extract and beat until combined. Slowly mix in the dry ingredients.
  4. Stir in the chocolate chips and caramel bits. Form cookie dough into tablespoon balls and place on prepared baking sheet, about 2 inches apart. Sprinkle each cookie with sea salt.
  5. Bake cookies for 10 minutes, or until slightly golden brown around the edges. 
  6. Let the cookies cool on the baking sheet for two minutes. Transfer to a wire cooling rack and cool completely.
  7. Enjoy!!

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Snickerdoodle Cake with Cinnamon Brown Sugar Buttercream


Birthday's are big at my work.  I am responsible for keeping the list of birthday current with my fellow employees, getting birthday cards, making sure they all get signed, and getting a cake.  After an unsuccessful trip to the grocery store to get a cake, I figured I would just make one.  I asked my co-worker what kind of cake she wanted and we browsed my Pinterest page to find something that looked delicious.  This cake was the winner.  I am a huge fan of cinnamon so I was very excited to get home to start baking.  The cake turned out great, everyone loved it.  I work for a high end catering company so most of my taste testers were chefs and people with a passion for food.  I think the buttercream was my favorite part.  It has a different texture then a typical buttercream because of the brown sugar but the flavor was divine and was a perfect compliment to the snickerdoodle cake.  I think ill start making different cakes every month for my co-workers.  Hope you enjoy it as much as we did!

Snickerdoodle Cake - Adapted from Always With Butter Blog
1 1/2 Cup Flour
1 1/2 Cup Cake Flour
1 Tablespoon Baking Powder
1/2 Teaspoon Salt
1 1/2 Tablespoon Cinnamon
1 Cup Butter (2 sticks) - unsalted and room temperature
1 3/4 Cups Sugar
4 Eggs - room temperature
2 Teaspoons Vanilla
1 1/4 Cups Milk

  1. Preheat the oven 325.
  2. Butter and flour two 8 or 9 inch cake pans
  3. Sift together both flours, baking powder, salt and cinnamon and set aside
  4. Cream butter and sugar until pale and fluffy
  5. Add eggs one at a time then add vanilla
  6. Alternating, add dry mixture then milk in three batches
  7. Divide up the batter into the two pans.
  8. Bake for 30 - 35 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean
  9. Let the cake cool completely before frosting

Cinnamon Brown Sugar Buttercream
3 Sticks Butter - unsalted and room temperature
2/3 Cup Brown Sugar - packed
1 Teaspoon Cinnamon
3-4 Cups Powdered sugar
1 Teaspoon Vanilla
4 Tablespoons Milk or Half and Half
  1. Cream the  butter, brown sugar and cinnamon on high speed
  2. Add the powdered sugar and then the vanilla and half and half and beat until light and fluffy
  3. Frost the cake
  4. ENJOY!

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Perfect Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Granola Bars


Fall is finally in the air in Southern California.  It was a pretty hot summer and I am glad to be back to wearing boots and sweaters, sipping hot cocoa on a cool night, and cuddling with my new husband under a blanket.  Well its not that cold yet, but a girl can dream (the high temp today is still 78 degrees). Anyway, I made these granola bars to get into the fall spirit, but I was too anxious and I did not read the recipe all the through.  I only baked mine for 20 minutes, instead of the full 40 minutes.  The flavor is delicious but my bars were falling apart.  I will definitely make these again soon and I will post an update.  I brought some of these to work with me and made everyone try them.  My husband brought them to his work too and shared them with his coworkers.  Everyone loved them even though they were pretty crumbly.  I am a cinnamon fanatic so I added more cinnamon to the recipe, and when I make these next time I am going to add nuts and white chocolate chips.  I hope you enjoy these as much as I did!

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Granola Bars - Adapted from Hip2save
Yield: 16-18
4 cups old fashioned oats
1/2 cup coconut oil
1/4 cup of brown sugar
1/4 cup ground Flaxseed (optional but if you have it in your pantry it adds great nutritional value to the bar, then you don't feel so guilty when you cannot stop eating these...)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup canned pumpkin puree
1/2 cup honey (I like to buy local organic honey from the farmers market)
1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup chocolate chips

Optional Additions/Substitutions:
White Chocolate Chips
Nuts - Almonds, walnuts, pecans

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line a baking pan with parchment paper. 
  2. In a large bowl, mix together oats and flaxseed and set aside. 
  3. In a separate bowl, mix honey, pumpkin, coconut oil, brown sugar, salt, pumpkin pie spice, and cinnamon. 
  4. Add wet ingredients to the oatmeal and stir. Add in chocolate chips. 
  5.  Press the mixture into the pan and flatten it really well with a spatula. Bake for about 20 minutes. Remove from oven and press down with a spatula again. 
  6. Bake for another 20-25 minutes until brown.  (I was too excited and forgot this second bake time... Whoooops!)
  7. Let cool for at least 2 hours before cutting. Makes about 16-18 bars. I like to cut them and store in a Tupperware container with parchment paper to keep the bars separated.
  8. Enjoy for breakfast or a snack!

Monday, October 20, 2014

Dark Chocolate Salted Caramel Stuffed Cookies



After about a 6 month hiatus, I am back baking and blogging.  I started a new job in July, got married in August then went on a two week honeymoon to Thailand & Cambodia in September.  Now that we are back and things have calmed down, I finally have time to blog again.  I made these cookies way back in April but I am just getting around to posting them.  They were such a hit that I actually made them twice in about a weeks time.  My husband's family said these were the best cookies I have ever made.  I am a sucker for anything dark chocolate, and salted caramel is one of my new favorite flavors.  This recipe combines both of those delicious flavors into my dream cookie.   I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I do!!

Dark Chocolate Salted Caramel Stuffed Cookies - Adapted from Sally's Baking Addiction
Yield: 14 - 16 big cookies
1/2 Cup Unsalted Butter, room temperature
1/2  Cup Sugar
1/2 Cup Brown Sugar
1 Large Egg, room temperature
1 Teaspoon Vanilla
1 Cup Flour
2/3 Cup Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
1 Teaspoon Baking Soda
1/8 Teaspoon Salt
2 Tablespoons Milk
1 1/2 Cups NestlĂ©® Toll House® Dark Chocolate Morsels - or store brand
16-17 Rolos - about two rolls
Coarse Sea Salt

  1. Using a handheld or stand mixer with a paddle attachment, cream the butter on medium speed for about 30 seconds. 
  2. Add the sugars with the mixer running on medium speed. Cream it all together until light and fluffy. 
  3. Beat in the egg and vanilla. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.
  4. In a separate medium size bowl, sift the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt together. 
  5. Slowly add to the wet ingredients. Stir in the milk, then fold in the dark chocolate morsels. The dough will be thick and very sticky. 
  6. Chill for at least 1-2 hours.
  7. Preheat oven to 350F degrees. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or silicone baking mat. Set aside.
  8. Take 2 Tablespoons of chilled dough and split in half and roll each into a ball with your hands. Stick a caramel into 1 ball of dough. Top the caramel with the other ball of dough and seal down the sides so that the caramel is securely stuffed inside. Repeat with the rest of the dough and 18 caramel candies. 
  9. Sprinkle each with sea salt before putting into the oven.
  10. Bake for 12-13 minutes. Cookies will appear undone and very soft. Allow to cool on the cookie sheet for at least 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
  11. Enjoy!