Thursday, September 27, 2012

Chewy Brown Sugar Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe


This cookie is in a chocolate chip cookie category all it's own. With 100% butter and 100% brown sugar you get an extra chewy, uniquely sweetened, melt-in-your-mouth delight. I love most every chocolate chip cookie, but this one gives the traditional variety a special something that will leave you coming back for more and more. You may want to hide these from yourself.

Chewy Brown Sugar Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe
recipe by
Makes 4 dozen cookies

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
1-1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
1 egg
1 egg yolk
2 tsp vanilla extract
2-1/2 cup flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
3/4 cup semi sweet chocolate chips
3/4 cup bittersweet chocolate chips


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 

In a large mixing bowl, cream together butter and brown sugar. Mix in vanilla and egg and egg yolk until combined. Add flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt and mix on low speed until just incorporated. Stir in chocolate chips. 

Drop by tablespoonful onto a large cookie sheet (preferably lined with a silicone baking mat.) Bake 9-11 minutes or until edges and tops of cookies are just golden. Let rest on the cookie sheet 2 or 3 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely. 

Monday, September 24, 2012

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Mini Muffin Recipe


I have been hearing Sara talk about the goodness of these muffins for years now, and for whatever unknown reason had never gotten around to baking them myself. I'm glad I finally kicked my rear into gear because these little babies are OUT OF THIS WORLD. I probably ate half the batch myself. 

These can be made in loaf form, muffin tins, or as mini muffins. I have become particularly keen on the mini muffins--they're just so darn cute and people love them. If you have a cookie scoop it makes the rationing of the batter even easier. 

This is my word to the wise--don't wait to make these muffins. It's offically FALL, people. These muffins are calling your name. 

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Mini Muffin Recipe
recipe adapted from Sara Luke
makes 3 dozen mini muffins

1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
3/4 cup pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling!)
1-3/4 cup flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp cloves
1/4 tsp ginger
3/4 - 1 cup chocolate chips (mini would be even better)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 
Grease a mini muffin tin or line with muffin liners. 

In a large bowl, beat together butter and sugar until creamed. Add in eggs and vanilla and mix until evenly distributed. Stir in pumpkin puree. 

In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, salt, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and ginger. Add into the creamed ingredients and stir just until combined. Mix in chocolate chips. 

Use a cookie scoop to equally distribute the batter into the mini muffin tin (about 2/3 full). Bake for 11 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Remove to a wire rack to cool completely. (Re-spray the muffin tin before subsequent batches of baking.) 


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Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Homemade Peanut Butter Recipe


If you are a fan of natural peanut butter, then this recipe takes your the best varieties and perfects it by limiting the essential ingredients to one--peanuts. The oil, salt (or even honey) are all optional additions to increase flavor in your homemade peanut butter. I love finding a jar of peanut butter with one ingredient on the label but the price is almost always too high for me. I'm not certain of the going rate for one pound of Smuckers Natural Peanut butter (I'm guessing around $4), but this version of homemade peanut butter costs about $2.40 per pound (depending on the price of your peanuts of course.) 

A win-win-win in my book. 

Homemade Peanut Butter Recipe

makes 3/4 pound of peanut butter (about 1 cup)

2 cups dry roasted peanuts 
1-1/2 Tbsp canola oil, optional
pinch of sea salt, optional

Combine ingredients in the bowl of a food processor with the blade attached. Turn on the food processor and let the nuts come together to form a paste. As the mixture ceases to churn, stop the machine, stir and resume processing. Repeat as needed. Keep processing until a smooth paste is achieved (though peanut butter will not be perfectly smooth like the store bought, highly processed versions like Jif.) Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator. When serving, it may help to microwave for 20 or 30 seconds to increase spreadability. 

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Rustic Peach Pie Recipe

We had a large bowl full of fresh, beautiful peaches given to us from local fruit farmer friends who go to our church. Yum! We were eating as fast as we could, but we couldn't keep it. It was time for reinforcements--pie to the rescue! This lovely, rustic pie is simple to make and delicious to eat, especially if it includes a side of homemade (or not) vanilla ice cream

Rustic Peach Pie Recipe
recipe adapted from Betty Crocker Cookbook
Serves 6

for the crust:
2 cup flour
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup shortening
1/2 beaten egg
2-4 Tbsp water

for the filling:
7-8 medium peaches, peeled and thinly sliced
1 Tbsp lemon juice
1/4 cup flour
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon

In a large bowl, stir together flour and salt. Cut in shortening until the mixture resembles tiny crumbles. Stir in egg and a couple tablespoons of water until the mixture comes together and forms a nice ball. Separate into two pieces, reserving half for another pie. Roll out into a rustic round shape on a lightly floured surface and transfer to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a silicone mat.

In a separate bowl, stir together flour, sugar and cinnamon. In a large bowl toss peaches and lemon juice, and add in the dry ingredients. Arrange filling in the center of the pie crust. Fold up the edges over 1-1/2 to 2 inches of the filling, all the way around, pinching dough together to reinforce. 

Bake for 40 minutes until crust browned and fruit is cooked. Cool completely before serving.    

Monday, September 3, 2012

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies Recipe

I first made a peanut butter chocolate chip cookie about a year ago, on a whim. I shared them with a friend and her family and I never stopped hearing about how delicious they were. Honestly, though, I didn't think they were that great. But TWICE (yes two times!) in the last week, I have made this recipe and man o man they are DELICIOUS. Chewy, moist, peanut buttery, chocolately. I can't. stop. eating. them. 

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies Recipe
Makes 3-1/2 dozen cookies

1/2 cup butter or margarine
1/4 cup shortening
1/4 cup creamy peanut butter
3/4 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup sugar
1-1/2 Tbsp vanilla
2 eggs
2-1/2 cup flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
3/4 cup semi sweet chocolate chips
(OR 1-1/2 cups chocolate chips)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 

In a large bowl, cream together butter, shortening, peanut butter, brown sugar and sugar until smooth. Beat in vanilla and eggs, one at a time. 

Stir in flour, baking soda and salt until just combined and then stir into chocolate chips. 

Scoop by the tablespoonful onto a cookie sheet, separating 2 inches on each side. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until browned on the edges. Let set on the baking sheet for 2 or 3 minutes and then transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely.