Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Oatmeal Raisin Chocolate Chip Cookies



What is with all these desserts?

If that is the question you are asking my blog, I would like you to picture this scenario: you have just moved to an entirely different part of the country and are looking for a job. Except for the place you are staying at has no internet. That does seem to complicate things a little bit.




Fortunately (unfortunately?) I am moving AGAIN to a new place on the 2nd. So I will be internetless for AT LEAST another week. AND I'll have to uproot everything.. again.. and get settled in another apartment.

Which brings us back to the initial question at hand. What is with all these desserts? The moving/looking for job/no internet crisis that is now at the forefront of my life is a reason in itself. And then some.




So bring on the cookies!!

As a cookie lover monster, I am all for trying new cookie combinations. Oatmeal raisin? Check. Chocolate chip cookies? Check. Oatmeal Cookies? Check. Mixing them all together? Well, now that is one big fat check mark.





Oatmeal Raisin Chocolate Chip Cookies
Printable Recipe


What you'll need:

  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 2/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups rolled oats
  • 3/4 cup raisins
  • 3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips




Directions:

  1. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flours, baking soda and cinnamon until fully combined. Set aside.
  2. In a separate bowl, beat the butter until creamy. Gradually add the brown sugar, and cream together until light ant fluffy.
  3. Add in the egg and vanilla and mix until smooth.
  4. Slowly mix in the dry ingredients until fully incorporated.
  5. Fold in oats, raisins and chocolate chips.
  6. Cover the top of the bowl with saran wrap and place in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours or overnight.
  7. Preheat the oven to 350˚F.
  8. Line baking sheet with parchment paper or silicone baking mat. 
  9. Scoop the cookie dough onto the sheet.
  10. Bake in the preheated oven for 10-15 minutes.  Let them cool on the sheet for 5 minutes, then transfer onto a wire rack to cool completely.

Adapted from Crunchy Creamy Sweet

Saturday, 23 August 2014

Apple Streusel Muffins



Let me first start by admitting that this is not a completely new recipe on my blog. Yeah, I know. Remember my last blog post when I lamented that I was getting more and more unoriginal? Well this one takes the cake. (Or the muffin. Ba dum tss)




If this recipe seems eerily similar to the one I made back in 2012...well you've got me. It is pretty much the same.

But you GUYS! It is so good that I NEEDED to remind you about it! So that you can store it in your shelf until apple season, or go out and make it now! Because who doesn't want to bake with apples all year round?




These muffins have actually been made (by me) so many times since the first time I posted them two years ago (can you believe I have been blogging for that long?). And now I want to give my new readers a chance to make them. You can be sure I'll make them again.




PART of the reason I am making these muffins is because my boyfriend is forcing me to eat healthy. Not forcing me like tying me to a chair and force feeding me kale and quinoa (which I wouldn't mind too much), but saying "we will not buy chocolate, candy, potato chips..." I kind of stopped listening after that, but I got his point.

I convinced him that I will bake one healthy thing, then one unhealthy thing. You know...to balance things out. And since these muffins have apples in them.. Well they must be healthy. Or that's what I convinced him.

So my friends, you can be expecting my next baked good to be unhealthy. Or hey, maybe I will jump on the healthy bandwagon and only bake healthy.

Alternately, maybe I can convince him that anything I bake would be healthier than the junk you buy prepacked in the stores. I will keep you updated. In the meantime, enjoy these muffins!





Apple Streusel Muffins
printable recipe 


What you'll need:

Muffin:
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
-1 teaspoon baking powder
-1/2 teaspoon baking soda
-1/2 teaspoon salt
-1 teaspoon cinnamon
-1/2 teaspoon nutmeg, ground
-1/2 cup butter, softened
-1/2 cup white sugar
-1/2 cup brown sugar
-2 eggs
-1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
-1 apple, peeled and cored, 3/4 shredded, 1/4 cut into cubes

Streusel topping:
-1/3 cup brown sugar
-1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
-1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
-1 tablespoon butter, melted


Directions:
    1.   Preheat oven to 375˚F. Line muffin pan with paper liners, or lightly spray a muffin pan.
    2.   In a medium bowl, combine the 2 cups flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, 1 teaspoon cinnamon and nutmeg.
    3.   In a large bowl, cream together the 1/2 cup butter, 1/2 cup brown and white sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs and vanilla and beat well. Slowly add the flour mixture, mixing until fully incorporated. Fold in the apples.
    4.   Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin pans.
    5.   In a small bowl, combine the streusel topping ingredients together. Sprinkle over the muffins.
    6.   Bake for around 15 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Place on wire racks to cool completely.


Slightly adapted from All Recipes

Tuesday, 19 August 2014

Vanilla Bean Cupcakes with Nutella Frosting



You don't know how much you miss something until it's gone.

The most cliche breakup song lines included some kind of variation of that sentence, but it is so true. In my case, it is not a person, but the internet.




I am going to go another two weeks without internet, and I'm not sure if I can do it! It feels like I'm missing out on all of the fantastic inspiration I could be getting from other food blogs. And I can't update my own blog unless I go to the nearest coffee shop (here I come Tim Hortons), or I use the data on my phone (here I come sore eyes and clumsy thumbs).

Also, Pinterest. I am going on a Pinterest withdrawal.




What could POSSIBLY cheer me up in this situation? Um...did anyone say cupcakes?

Actually, as with my previous post, did anyone say Nutella??




These cupcakes, like most of the cupcakes I make, did not last long. Like, at all. I am looking at these pictures right now, and am craving them all over again.




Because of my lack of internet, these cupcakes aren't the most creative thing you have ever seen in the world, but sometimes simple and ordinary is best. Or that is what I will keep telling myself. That is, until I reacquaint myself with the internet full time in two weeks..





Vanilla Bean Cupcakes with Nutella Frosting


What you'll need:

Cupcakes:
  • 3/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
Frosting:
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 2 cups icing sugar
  • 3/4 cup nutella
  • 3 tablespoons milk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla bean paste
Directions:
  1. Preheat the oven to 325˚F. Line two muffin pans with cupcake liners. Set aside.
  2. Cupcakes: In a medium bowl, cream together the butter and the sugar until light and fluffy. Add in the eggs one at a time, and beat until fully combined. Mix in the lemon juice and vanilla bean paste.
  3. In a separate bowl, mix together the flour and baking powder. Slowly mix the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until fully incorporated.
  4. Fill the prepared cupcake liners with batter, around 3/4 full. 
  5. Bake in the preheated oven for 15 minutes, remove and rotate pans, then bake an additional 15 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Remove cupcakes from the oven, and place on wire racks to cool completely.
  6. Frosting: In a medium bowl, beat the butter on medium speed for around 2-3 minutes, until smooth and creamy. Add the icing sugar, and beat until fully incorporated. Add in the Nutella, milk and vanilla bean paste and mix until fully combined. If the mixture is too thick, add more milk. If it is too thin, add more icing sugar until the frosting reaches your desired consistency. Pipe onto the cooled cupcakes.

Frosting recipe adapted from: Sally's Baking Addiction

Thursday, 14 August 2014

Four Ingredient Nutella Mug Cake





Moving takes a toll on you like you would not believe!

I know I have been gone for a while, but moving all the way to Toronto, and having no internet in the place that you're staying will do that to you. But I promise, I will make up for it. With the most magic word I know: Nutella.




And do you want to know the best part about this recipe? Even though you haven't had the chance to unpack all of your baking supplies (which is, by the way, a LOT) you can still make this no problem.




Because how can you move to the other side of the country and NOT bring what is truly important: springform pans and a stand mixer. And I would like to say, my stand mixer survived! The only reason I brought clothes at all was as padding for these baking supplies, so they won't break. You can see what my priorities are.

But I won't be needing them for a while. Because Nutella cakes in a mug are my new best friend.





Four Ingredient Nutella Mug Cake
printable recipe


What you'll need:

  • 4 tablespoons flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 cup Nutella
  • 3 tablespoons milk
Directions:
  1. In a microwave safe mug, whisk together all of the ingredients until fully combined. 
  2. Microwave for 1 minute, and see if it's done. If not. continue to microwave in 30 second intervals.

Adapted from Kirbie Cravings

Friday, 8 August 2014

Peanut Butter Pretzel Chocolate Chip Cookies



I know what you're thinking.

Can't I just leave well enough alone? Haven't we already perfected the chocolate chip cookie? Or even the chocolate chip peanut butter cookie. Why am I going overboard on this by adding pretzels?




The answer is simple. Because I freaking love pretzels.

If you were to put two bags in front of me: one being a bag of potato chips and the other one being a bag of pretzels, well you can pretty much expect that bag of pretzels to be gone within the hour. Regardless of the size of this bag.

So it only seems natural for me to put them into a cookie. Because really, is there anything that I have NOT yet put in a cookie? (If there is, please recommend it. I am always up for experimenting.)




These cookies didn't last long at all. Turns out, when you put pretzels in cookie form, they disappear almost as fast as the bag of pretzels in front of me.

I am thinking about putting this on the list of Christmas cookies to bake. Because it's never too early to start thinking about Christmas. (at least, as far as the baking is concerned.)





Peanut Butter Pretzel Chocolate Chip Cookies
printable recipe


What you'll need:

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup pretzels, finely crushed
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/4 cups brown sugar, packed
  • 3/4 cup crunchy peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup vegetable shortening
  • 3 tablespoons milk
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips
Directions:
  1. Preheat the oven to 375˚F. Lightly spray a baking sheet, and set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, mix together the flour, pretzels, baking soda and salt.
  3. In a separate bowl, cream together the sugar, peanut butter, shortening, milk and vanilla until fully combined. Add in the egg, and beat until fully incorporated. 
  4. Slowly mix in the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients until fully combined. Fold in the chocolate chips.
  5. Scoop heaping tablespoons of batter onto the prepared baking sheet, around an 2 inches apart. Flatten them out with a fork to make a criss-ross pattern. 
  6. Bake in the preheated oven for about 8-10 minutes, or until the edges are beginning to brown. Remove from the oven, and let cool for around 2 minutes, and transfer to wire racks to cool completely.

Adapted from Brown Eyed Baker

Tuesday, 5 August 2014

Sweet and Salty Coconut Vanilla Bean Granola



Just like I promised. Yet another granola recipe.

Call me predictable, call me obsessed, I just know what I like, and right now, I am liking granola. A lot.




This recipe is courtesy of my boyfriend's mom. When I tried her granola, I wanted the recipe right away. Which is totally unlike me. I am not one to ask for recipes unless I know that I'm going to be making it at least 5 times.

And I predict this granola recipe to be a regular in my breakfast rotation.




I have never made sweet and salty granola before, but now that I have, I don't want to try anything else. And the CLUSTERS that this granola makes. Gahh, I can eat them all day long.

Now don't expect to see many more granola recipes in the near future. I'm not sure if I will get tired of this one any day soon.





Sweet and Salty Coconut Vanilla Bean Granola
printable recipe


What you'll need:

  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1/4 cup sliced almonds
  • 1/4 cup shredded sweetened coconut
  • 1/3 cup raisins
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1/2 tablespoon vanilla bean paste


Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 300˚F
  2. In a large bowl, mix together the oats, sugar, almonds, coconut, raisins, cinnamon and salt. 
  3. In a small microwave safe bowl, heat the honey until melted, around 20 seconds. Mix in the coconut oil until it is melted. Mix in the vanilla until fully combined
  4. Pour the wet ingredients in with the oat mixture until the mixture is evenly coated. 
  5. Spread evenly on a parchment lined baking sheet, and bake in the preheated oven for 20 minutes, or until slightly brown.
  6. Allow to cool completely, then break into pieces. Store in an airtight container

Saturday, 2 August 2014

Honey Raisin Bran Muffins



Good morning muffins!

If I say that often enough, do you think that muffins will magically appear on my kitchen counter ready to be consumed? Be careful how you answer this, you might crush my dreams.

But until this starts happening, I will be content with actually baking them myself.




Recently, as some of you may know, I have been on a sort of a granola kick. Coconut Vanilla Granolapecan cranberry granolaapricot granola... the list goes on. So granola and yogurt. That was pretty much my breakfast for the past month. Obsessive much? I think obsessive should be my middle name.




Now maybe my breakfasts will look like muffins and yogurt instead. I can see myself having a muffin obsession. New month, new obsession.

Just watch me make a granola recipe for my next post. I'm not sure if my obsession for granola will ever go away.




These muffins were fantastic. I gave some to my dad who hates bran, and he gobbled down two of these, and was reaching for a third the last time I checked. These muffins will put your bowl of raisin bran to shame, and are probably healthier too.

I'm thinking perfect weekday grab and go breakfast? This is so happening.





Honey Raisin Bran Muffins
printable recipe


What you'll need:

  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 cup boiling water
  • 3/4 cup honey
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 3/4 cups wheat bran


Directions:
  1. Preheat the oven to 375˚F. Line 2 muffin pans with paper liners.
  2. Place the raisins in a medium bowl, and sprinkle them with the baking soda. Pour the boiling water over the raisins, stir once, then set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, combine the honey,flour, salt, egg, oil, milk and wheat bran until just combined. Add in the raisin mixture (both the raisins and the raisin water) and mix until just combined. Do not over mix.
  4. Fill each paper liner 3/4 full of batter. Bake for 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove and allow to cool on the wire racks.

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