Category Archives: Cookies & Bars

Nom nom nom

This post could also be titled: “How to make your boss’s birthday.” Assuming, of course, that your boss is a oatmeal cookie person. Oatmeal cookies are my boss’s favorite.

Since I work in such a small office, we normally do a little something for each person’s birthday. Especially for summer birthdays when everything is incredibly quiet. 

Fast forward to Sunday night when I remember I had agreed to bake something and am scrambling. Oatmeal? Check. Raisins? No check. Okay, cherries then. Turned out to be a genius move. 

The dried cherries are bright and tart. The oatmeal is toasted. And the overall effect is addicting, even for those who aren’t normally big fans of oatmeal cookies like me.

Chewy Cherry Oatmeal Cookies

Adapted from the Kitchn

3 1/2 c old-fashioned rolled oats
1 c flour
1 tsp baking powder
2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp fine salt
2 sticks butter, room temperature
3/4 c brown sugar
3/4 c sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 c dried tart cherries

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Spread oats over 2 baking sheets evenly. Bake, stirring halfway through, for 15-20 minutes. Oats will be slightly golden and smell great! Set aside to cool.

Take 1/2 cup of toasted oats and put in food processor/blender/spice grinder. Pulse until finely ground. Set aside.

Cream butter and sugars in a mixing bowl until light and fluffy. Add eggs and vanilla, scraping down bowl as necessary.

Add all dry ingredients including toasted and ground oats. Stir until just combined. Add cherries and gently mix in using a rubber spatula, until evenly distributed.

Place cookies on baking sheet and bake 8-10 minutes. Bake an additional 2 minutes if you prefer crispier cookies. 

Let cookies cool on baking sheet for 1-2 minutes. Move cookies on rack to cool completely.

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Filed under American, Cookies & Bars

Intensely Fudgey Rye Brownies

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Maybe you think that brownies are the last thing you need in January. But maybe you are wrong.

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Filed under American, Cookies & Bars

Coffee and dessert in one

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Sometimes, you just need to make some very impressive cookies. Like when you are baking for the entire faculty at your university in honor of the new president. These cookies will make you look very impressive. Especially if you brush them with chocolate and cut them out with a tiny fluted cookie cutter.

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The magic of peanut butter

rice krispie valentines

Like many delicious things (Popsicles spring to mind), these treats were a happy accident. I didn’t leave soda outside though. I was making adorable heart-shaped rice krispie treats when I realized I needed to make vegetarian-friendly treats as well. Because it is ridiculously cold out, I didn’t want to go out and search for vegan marshmallows or Fluff or something I wasn’t going to use again.

As usual, the internet came through with something delicious! If you don’t eat corn syrup, I don’t know what to tell you. I’ve seem some recipes with some kind of brown rice syrup…I’m not sure I can recommend it because I’ve never worked with it.

I don’t have photos of them, just of their pink gelatin-based cousins. But I assure you, they were a big hit and anything shaped like a heart is always adorable.

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Filed under Cookies & Bars, Vegetarian

Chewy, Minty Goodness

peppermint patty cookiesI am a bad person. I promised to post these cookies some time ago. And , in my defense, I thought that I had.

Apparently, all I had actually accomplished was  typing up the recipe. The story behind these cookies is actually a bit longer than the recipe though. In the beginning of October, whilst out grocery shopping at BJs (a wholesale club, for those not in the know), I realized we hadn’t yet bought Halloween candy. Why I thought it would be a good idea to buy Halloween candy in bulk, I am not sure. The point is that we ended up with 175 individual York Peppermint Patties.  And not a single trick o’ treater.

We weren’t in fact home during the  scheduled Halloween session so that is partially our fault. But why do kids trick o’ treat between 5-6 pm nowadays? Very strange. Anyways, we thought we’d be ok. After all, mints tend to prevent overindulgence. Or so we thought. My impressive stamina in the quest for all thins sugary shocked us both. Quickly, I began to search for a recipe which would allow me to use up some of our stash.

Peppermint patty ice cream? Sounds heavenly but I have no ice cream maker.
Peppermint patty cake? Well, it’s really just chocolate cake with peppermints on top, plus it is a paint to serve.
Peppermint patty cookies? Now that could work. And They would be easy to share.

And so I have.

Chewy Peppermint Cookies
Adapted from Alice Medrich via Orangette

4 tbsp butter, melted
2/3 c sugar
1/3 c brown sugar
7 tbsp cocoa powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/8 tsp salt
1 c flour
1/3 c yogurt, plain (I use nonfat)
½ c York Peppermint Patties, cut into quarters

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line your baking sheets with parchment paper. This is a must!

Combine butter and sugars in a large bowl. Sift in cocoa powder and blend well. Add remaining dry ingredients and stir. The dough will become very thick indeed. Carefully add the yogurt. Once the dough is uniform, stir in the Peppermint Patties. Try not to crush them completely, though some casualties are to be expected.

Scoop out about 1 inch balls of dough. Bake 10-12 minutes or until the tops look set. After 5 minutes or so, transfer the cookies to a rack and allow to cool completely. Hopefully, they will have set up enough. They can be rather structurally weak if the Patties have melted out (this is also why we lined the baking sheets!)

 

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Brownie S’mores

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Yeah, you read that right. I put marshmallow on top of a brownie. It’s kind of awesome. It may be the main reason I got my job. But seriously, these brownies are less dangerous than they seem.

They are magical brownies. Reduced fat but dense and chocolate-y. Almost bittersweet with a burnt marshmallow topping. Job seekers out there: I say bring this to your interview and see what happens 😉

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Filed under American, Cakes & Tarts, Cookies & Bars

Foolproof Madeleines

Book of the Month: Swann’s Way by Marcel Proust

If you are going to be trapped inside by frigid temperatures and gusting winds, why not set about tackling a great literary masterpiece? I will admit Proust took me several tries to finish. However, it was not due to lack of interest. It was due to lack of time.

If you are in a hurry and need a quick dessert, I would suggest madeleines. Of course, I couldn’t really pick something different if I was going to be discussing Proust. But these are also very tasty treats and I have found the recipe to be a complete success every time I use it.

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Speaking of lack of time, I apologize for these photos. I baked them in the middle of the night, which was not really the best time. But considering how tasty they are, I don’t regret it.

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