Wednesday, 16 April 2014

Chocolate Peanut Butter Creamy Chia Pudding



Chia seed pudding. You either love it or hate it.

It's the texture, right? Slimy, cold.. But I think it's delicious.




Ever since I have made my matcha and vanilla chia seed pudding, I have been eating chia seed pudding left, right and center. Waiting to take pictures of the pudding seems like a punishment to me, because I want to eat it all in one sitting.

But to all of you who hate the texture, hate the taste, but KNOW that it's good for you and WANT to like it, I have the recipe for you.




I firmly believe that my food processor can do everything. Don't have a pastry blender? Use a food processor. Want to make a smoothie and lost your blender? Use the food processor! Hate chia seed pudding? No problem, USE YOUR FOOD PROCESSOR!

Now in this recipe, I am hiding two ingredients that many people can't deal with. Chia seeds and prunes. Sounds like a weird combo, no?

But I'm telling you, it's not! Hiding ingredients in a chocolate concoction of any kind (like my prune brownies) is always the way to go.

Top this pudding with granola? (Perhaps some pecan cranberry granola?) Droool... This pudding won't last the week.





What you'll need:

-2 cups milk
-1/2 cup chia seeds
-1/4 cup creamy peanut butter
-1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
-7 pitted prunes
-1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


Directions:

    1.   Whisk together the milk and chia seeds in a medium bowl. Add in the peanut butter, cocoa powder, prunes and vanilla. Stir a couple of times and place in the fridge overnight.
    2.   In the morning, scrape the contents into a food processor, and process until smooth.
    3.   Portion into bowls and top with desired toppings. Serve right away, or store in an airtight container in the fridge until ready to serve.

Sunday, 13 April 2014

Walnut Oatmeal Raisin Cookies



I am building up my cookie repertoire. One cookie recipe at a time.

Now I know there are some raising haters out there. I'm sure you could replace the raisins with some chocolate chips, dried cranberries, or leave them out all together, but for me, nothing beats a good old fashioned oatmeal raisin cookie.




And this is why I think it's so weird that I have waited to long to make them! Because this, to me, is childhood.

When I was growing up, the only cookies that my mom would eat were variations of oatmeal cookies. Actually, that's a lie. It was only oatmeal raisin cookies, or just straight up oatmeal cookies. That's right folks. Someone who would turn down Oreos when offered to her. Crazy.




And now, after I have been experimenting with all these crazy cookie flavors, like my chocolate chip oreo cookies, or my apple cranberry oatmeal cookies, I just wanted a no frills, oatmeal raisin cookie.

Well, maybe some frills.

I am always nervous when I try to make a plain cookie, so I'm always looking to stuff some more ingredients in it: this time, walnuts. But feel free to leave those out. I'm sure you are less crazy nervous about cookie making than I am.







Oatmeal Raisin Cookies
printable recipe 

What you'll need:

-1 1/2 cups rolled oats
-1/2 cup all-purpose flour
-1/2 cup whole wheat flour
-1/2 teaspoon baking powder
-1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
-1/4 teaspoon salt
-1/2 cup butter, softened
-1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
-1/2 cup white sugar
-1 teaspoon vanilla extract
-1 egg
-1/2 raisins
-1/2 cup chopped walnuts


Directions:

    1.   Preheat the oven to 350˚F.
    2.   In a medium bowl, mix together the oats, flours, baking powder, cinnamon and salt.
    3.   In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Add the vanilla and eggs and mix well. Stir in the oat mixture and mix well.
    4.   Stir in the raisins and walnuts.
    5.   Drop by tablespoonfuls onto a cookie sheet 2 inches apart.
    6.   Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until golden. Cool on cookie sheet for 5 minutes, then allow to cool completely on wire racks.

Friday, 11 April 2014

Apple and Butterscotch Scones



Being up at midnight doing school work totally doesn't work for me.

I don't understand people who do all nighters. As soon as the clock hits midnight, I'm done. I can't do anything that requires concentration. Reason #12 why I'm a morning person.




And since it's technically the morning right now, my midnight snack will be a breakfast food.

I'm saying this as though I don't eat breakfast food at every hour of the day. Because, let's face it. If breakfast is the most important meal of the day, I may as well have it all day. This means all my meals are important..right?

I say..yes.




Now I know that this is SUCH a September recipe, but I'm always eating apples. And if I can put apples in my baked goods, then I am one happy camper.




I think these scones are my favorite scone recipe so far. Not too sweet,  with bursts of apple and butterscotch in between. And don't forget to sprinkle them with coarse sugar. Because that's the best part.

Now if only I could finish writing this paper...





Apple and Butterscotch Scones
printable recipe


What you'll need:

-1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
-1 cup whole wheat flour
-3/4 teaspoon salt
-1/3 cup white sugar
-1 tablespoon baking powder
-1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
-1/2 cup butter
-2 medium apples, peeled. cored and cubed
-3/4 cup butterscotch chips
-2 eggs
-1 teaspoon vanilla extract
-1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
+coarse sugar


Directions:

    1.   Preheat the oven to 425˚F. 
    2.   In a large bowl, mix together the flours, sugar, salt, baking powder and cinnamon. 
    3.   Pour the flour mixture into your food processor and add in the butter. Process until the mixture looks like coarse meal. 
    4.   Pour back into the large bowl. Mix in the apples and butterscotch chips. 
    5.   In a medium bowl, beat together the eggs, vanilla and applesauce. 
    6.   Mix in the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients until fully combined. 
    7.   Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat. Scoop the batter by 1/4 cupfuls onto the prepared baking sheet. Sprinkle with the coarse sugar. 
    8.   Bake for around 20 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove from oven and allow to cool on baking sheets briefly. Serve warm, or store in an airtight container for later.

Tuesday, 8 April 2014

Whole Wheat Cheese Biscuits



These biscuits...

Now before I start drooling all over my keyboard and wishing these biscuits lasted for more than the maybe 2 hours after I baked them, I will warn you. Once you make cheese biscuits, you will not be able to stop.

Seriously. It all started the day I made the regular cheese biscuits. One of the rare recipes I make over and over to the point of actually memorizing it. Then, to use up some of my apples, I made apple cheddar cheese biscuits. The variations will never end I tell you!





I can tell you now with full certainty that the only thing stopping me from going vegan and never look back is cheese. I don't know what it is, but I can't live without it.




Now if someone has any suggestions on what kind of cheesy biscuits I could be making next, I would welcome them with open arms. But for now, I'm quite content with these whole wheat ones.

I'm predicting that I'll be making these at least three (or ten) times this month.




What you'll need:

-1 cups all-purpose flour
-1 cup whole wheat flour
-1/2 teaspoon salt
-2 teaspoons white sugar
-4 teaspoons baking powder
-1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
-1/2 cup shortening
-2/3 cup shredded cheddar cheese
-2/3 cup milk


Directions:

    1.   Preheat the oven to 425˚F.
    2.   In a medium bowl, combine the flours, salt sugar baking powder and cream of tartar. Pour into a food processor, and add the shortening. Pulse to mix until the mixture resembles coarse meal.
    3.   Stir in the cheese with a fork. Mix in the milk until fully combined.
    4.   Turn the dough onto a floured surface, and flatten into a rectangular shape. Cut the dough into squares.
    5.   Place the dough onto a ungreased baking sheet, and bake for around 15 minutes, or until golden brown.

Saturday, 5 April 2014

Baked Lemon Doughnuts Filled with Lemon Jelly



When was the last time I made doughnuts? ...donuts? I never know, my spell check says they are both correct.

I'll tell you when. Back in April 2012. Back when I had my doughnut pan. I need to keep looking through the boxes in my house, I have a craving for doughnuts that just won't go away.




And since I am truly incompetent at making fried doughnuts, the three or so times I have made doughnuts have been in the oven. Although, I confess, I have never actually ATTEMPTED to make fried doughnuts, I doubt that me and a pot of hot oil are a good combination under any circumstance.

Some day I will whip out a pot of oil, and I will go to town with some krispy kreme-esque doughnuts. But until then, I will be chomping down on these pockets of sunshine.

Just to be safe.





Baked Lemon Doughnuts Filled with Lemon Jelly
printable recipe

What you'll need:

Dough:
-1/3 cup milk
-1 tablespoon vinegar
-5 1/3 cups all-purpose flour 
-1/2 cup + 3 1/2 teaspoons berry sugar
-2 1/4 teaspoons dried yeast
-finely grated lemon zest from 2 lemons
-1 cup lukewarm whole milk
-2 eggs, room temperature
-2 tablespoons butter, melted

Lemon Filling:
-3/4 cup sugar
-3 tablespoons cornstarch
-1/4 teaspoon salt
-3/4 cup water
-1 teaspoon grated lemon rind
-1 tablespoon butter
-1/3 cup lemon juice
+yellow gel food coloring

Lemon Sugar:
-1/2 cup butter
-1 cup berry sugar
-finely grated zest from 1 lemon


Directions:

    1.   Dough: In a small bowl, mix together the 1/3 cup milk and vinegar, and set aside (around 5 minutes to "sour") 
    2.   In a large bowl, combine the flour, berry sugar, yeast and lemon zest. 
    3.   In a medium bowl, whisk together the milk, eggs, butter and "soured" milk. 
    4.   Slowly pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, and knead until smooth and elastic. Cover, and let stand in a warm place until doubled in size.
    5.   Lemon Filling: In a medium saucepan, combine the sugar, cornstarch, salt and water on medium heat. Stir constantly until mixture thickens and boils. Continue to cook at a boil for 1 minute. Add in the lemon juice.
    6.   Remove from heat and add the lemon rind, butter and food coloring. Allow to cool before using.
    7.   Preheat the oven to 375˚F.
    8.   On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough to 5mm thick. Cut 48 rounds with a round cutter. Reroll the scraps if necessary. Place a heaped teaspoon of the lemon filling in the center of 24 of the round pieces. Brush the edges with milk and cover with the remaining rounds. Press to seal the edges well.
    9.   Transfer to a lightly sprayed baking sheet, then bake until lightly golden, around 12 minutes.
   10.   Meanwhile, melt the butter. In a small bowl, combine the sugar and lemon zest.
   11.   When the doughnuts are done, dip them in the butter and toss in the lemon sugar.     

Wednesday, 2 April 2014

Pretzel and Nutella Granola



My jar of peanut butter is empty. I guess that means that I need to use my other favorite spread. It needs no introduction. You know what it is..




Probably half of any given jar of Nutella ends up being combined with peanut butter in some way. The rest..well that usually just ends up spooned into my mouth.

So I wanted to switch it up a little. I wanted to be fancy by baking my Nutella right into some breakfast worthy granola.

Then trash it up with some crushed up pretzels. You know, because that sounds like the best thing to do.




And while I'm still opening and closing the enormous amount of boxes littering my house, searching for my belongings, I can find some comfort in eating pretzels and chocolate for breakfast. Because if that won't cheer me up and get me ready for the day, then I don't know what will.





Pretzel and Nutella Granola
printable recipe

What you'll need:

-4 tablespoons Nutella
-4 tablespoons honey
-3/4 cup crushed pretzels
-2 cups large flake oats


Directions:

    1.   Preheat the oven to 350˚F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
    2.   Place the Nutella and honey in a small bowl, and microwave for 20-30 seconds. Mix together until smooth.
    3.   In a medium bowl, mix together the oats and pretzels. Mix in the melted Nutella mixture until the oats are coated with the mixture.
    4.   Spread the oat mixture on the prepared baking sheet, and bake for around 17 minutes. Let cool.
    5.   Store in an airtight container.

Sunday, 30 March 2014

Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Cookies




So guess what I walk into when I get home from Toronto after a 6:50 AM flight?

Everything is pilled into boxes. I can't sleep in my bed because it's covered in junk, and I can't find anything that belongs to me.

There are painters in my house, and apparently we KNOW that they are stealing from us. My mom bought a closed rice cooker, and later found a knife slit along the side. When she went to open it up, there was kitty litter inside.




What a way to return home. Especially when I have to teach tomorrow. I mean, talk about the worst way to welcome someone off of a plane.

Now I'm staying at my boyfriend's parents place, who were kind enough to let me stay here for however long I want.




Needless to say, I need some kind of treat to get me through this. And while this cookie didn't solve much, it made me forget for a quick second how despairing I felt when I returned home.

Continuing with my peanut butter obsession. These cookies won't last long. Trust me.





Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Cookies
printable recipe

What you'll need:

-1 cup butter, softened
-1 cup creamy peanut butter
-1 cup white sugar
-1 cup brown sugar, packed
-2 large eggs
-1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
-2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
-2 teaspoon baking soda
-1 teaspoon cornstarch
-1/4 teaspoon salt
-2 cups chocolate chips


Directions:

    1.   In a large bowl, beat together the butter, peanut butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Stir in the eggs and vanilla until fully combined. 
    2.   In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, cornstarch and salt. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, and mix until fully combined. Stir in the chocolate chips.
    3.   Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
    4.   Preheat the oven to 350˚F.
    5.   Drop rounded tablespoonfuls of dough onto ungreased cookie sheets. Bake for 8-10 minutes, or until the edges begin to turn golden brown. Let cool on wire racks.
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