Tag Archives: Chocolate

Cocoa Streusel Topped Cranberry Coffee Cake

Cocoa Streusel Topped Cranberry Coffee Cake

Today is a simple, quick Saturday post, seeing as it’s the Saturday before Christmas and hopefully you aren’t having to brave the shopping malls. But if you are out there braving the holiday madness, you have my condolences and when you get back, there is coffee cake to cheer you up. As there should be.

cocoa streusel topped cranberry coffee cake

This particular cake is easy to prepare, features the lovely, beautiful cranberry – perfect for December – and the streusel topping is very special because it utilizes cocoa powder to give the cake a chocolate-y crunch. A welcome change-up from usual coffee cake streusel!

Cocoa-Streusel Topped Cranberry Coffee Cake

This cake batter is very thick, which yields such a moist end result. This would be perfect to make the day before or morning your guests are to arrive and keep it around all week for general grazing purposes. It’s such a festive and delicious coffee cake, everyone will love it. Enjoy!

Cocoa Streusel Topped Cranberry Coffee Cake

{One Year Ago: Cincinnati Chili}
{Two Years Ago: Pumpkin French Toast}

Source: adapted from Homemade with Love by Jennifer Perillo

Ingredients:
COCOA STREUSEL TOPPING:
1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
¼ cup granulated sugar
¼ cup packed brown sugar
2 tbs unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp ground allspice
1 stick (8 tbs) unsalted butter, melted

CAKE:
3 cups all-purpose flour
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp kosher salt
2 tsp baking powder
1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 cups granulated sugar
4 large eggs, at room temperature
1 cup plain Greek yogurt, either 2% or full fat, not fat-free
Zest of 1 orange
3 cups fresh cranberries, coarsely chopped (I used my food processor for this)

Directions:
Preheat your oven to 350 F. Grease a 9×13” baking pan. Set aside.
First make the streusel topping. Add the flour, sugars, cocoa powder, and allspice in a medium bowl. Use a fork or whisk to stir in the melted butter until well combined. Set aside.
Now make the cake. Whisk the flour, baking soda, salt, and baking powder together in a small bowl. Set aside.
Add the butter and sugar to a large bowl and cream together with a hand mixer until light and fluffy, 3 to 5 minutes.
Add the eggs, beating well after each addition. Now add one third of the dry ingredients and mix on low speed until fully incorporated. Add one third of the yogurt and mix on low until fully incorporated. Repeat, alternating between the dry and wet ingredients until all have been added. Add the orange zest and beat quickly to combine.
Use a rubber spatula to fold in the cranberries until evenly incorporated. Spread the batter into the prepared baking pan, smoothing it out to an even layer. Evenly sprinkle the cocoa streusel on top, making sure to get the outer edges too. Bake for 60 minutes, until a metal skewer inserted into the center comes out clean. Let cool for 30 minutes, then serve warm or at room temperature.

Cranberry Chocolate Pecan Pie

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Pecan pie is probably one of the first desserts I ever learned how to make. Unless dipping strawberries in whipped cream counts. Likely not.

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You see, my grandfather, Pawpaw, is probably the world’s biggest pecan pie fiend, so when we weren’t sure what to get him for Christmas, my mom and I would bake him a pecan pie and that would be his Christmas present. More often than not, in my family pecan pie made an appearance at Christmas dinner as well as Thanksgiving.

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So that probably figures into why I feel completely comfortable sharing a pecan pie with my dear readers even though it’s December and Thanksgiving leftovers are already a thing of the past.

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I’ve shared a very special version of pecan pie in the past here, and this one is quite different enough that I don’t feel redundant. Today we’re adding chocolate (!!!) and fresh cranberries. Because chocolate ALWAYS works, and because I’m firmly in the camp of believing cranberries belong on December menus all month long.

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We always baked Pawpaw a very traditional pecan pie, so I’m not sure how he’d feel about this one. But Matt and I did love it. I’m not gonna lie – it’s rich, as most pecan pies are, and I think the chocolate takes that over the top even more. But the pop of the tart cranberries was welcome to my palate, and I think this is a great pie to bake if you’re looking to shake up tradition a little. I hope you enjoy it!

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{One Year Ago: Mint Chocolate Cookies and Cream Ice Cream, No-Bake Chocolate, Peanut Butter and Oatmeal Cookies}
{Two Years Ago: Pumpkin Pecan Souffled Pancake}

Source: slightly adapted from The Boozy Baker by Lucy Baker

Ingredients:
Pie dough for 1 (9-inch) pie, chilled
1 ½ cups fresh cranberries
1 cup granulated sugar
¼ cup bourbon
1 cup light corn syrup
Pinch of kosher salt
2 tbs unsalted butter
2 oz. good quality dark chocolate, rough chopped
3 large eggs
1 (8 oz.) bag of chopped, toasted pecan pieces

Directions:
On a lightly floured surface, use a floured rolling pin to roll out your pie dough into a 12-inch circle. Lightly grease a 9-inch pie plate and transfer the dough to the plate. Crimp the edges decoratively, then chill the pie shell in the refrigerator while you make the filling.
Preheat your oven to 350 F. Arrange a rack in the lower third of the oven.
To make the filling, combine the cranberries, sugar, bourbon, corn syrup, and salt in a medium saucepan. Bring to a simmer and cook until the cranberries soften and the mixture thickens, 4-6 minutes. Add the butter and chocolate and stir until melted. Remove the saucepan from the heat and allow to cool about 15 minutes.
In a small bowl, whisk the eggs until frothy and well blended. Very slowly pour in a small amount (about ¼ cup) of the cranberry chocolate mixture into the beaten eggs, whisking continuously. This will temper your eggs so they do not scramble when you add them to the pie filling. After your eggs are tempered, slowly pour them into the cranberry mixture, stirring continuously until combined. Now stir in the pecans.
Remove the pie shell from the refrigerator. Set the pie plate on a rimmed baking sheet. Pour the pie filling into the pie shell, and bake until the filling is just set and slightly puffed, about 45 minutes. Cool the pie completely on a wire rack. Cut into slices and serve.

Toffee Brownies

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So here I am at last, sharing the final brownie recipe for my themed Blondies and Brownies week. The anal-retentive part of me needed to get two blondies recipes plus two brownies recipe up on the blog, to make the title of the themed week accurate. I hadn’t been calling it Blondies and Brownie week, though as of Friday afternoon, that’s pretty much what it was.

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No, I have to make the plural tense accurate. And what better way to do that than with Toffee Brownies? Personally, I can’t think of anything….

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So, these are amazing. Of course. I’m a toffee fiend, and I know I’m not even remotely alone.

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Oh, and these brownies are intensely chocolate-y. They are super-rich and not too sweet. In short, they are a wonderful little snack or dessert for all you chocolate and toffee lovers, and they’re pretty easy to make, too. I hope y’all will enjoy them!

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{One Year Ago: Banana Dark Chocolate Chunk Mini Muffins}

Source: Down South by Donald Link

Ingredients:

BROWNIES:
1/3 cup cocoa powder
4 tbs unsalted butter
2 oz. unsweetened chocolate, coarsely chopped
2 ¼ cup granulated sugar
½ cup plus 2 tbs canola oil
2 large eggs
2 large egg yolks
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 ¾ cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp kosher salt
2 (8 oz.) packages of Heath bar or toffee bits (about 3 cups)
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

ICING:
6 tbs unsalted butter
1 oz. unsweetened baking chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 ½ oz. bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
¼ cup sour cream
½ cup plus 1/3 cup confectioners’ sugar

Directions:
To make the BROWNIES: preheat your oven to 350 F. Grease a 9×13” baking pan and set aside.
Pour ½ cup plus 2 tbs of boiling or really, really hot water into a 1-cup measuring cup. Add the cocoa powder and whisk vigorously to combine. Set aside.
Set up a double boiler, or a makeshift one of a glass bowl atop a saucepan of simmering water, and add the butter and the chocolate. Let them both melt, and whisk until smooth when done. When smooth, whisk in the cocoa powder mixture.
In a large bowl, whisk together the sugar, oil, eggs, egg yolks, and vanilla. Slowly whisk in the chocolate mixture. Add the flour and salt and gently whisk to combine. Stir in 2 ½ cups toffee chips and the semi-sweet chocolate chips.
Use a rubber spatula to transfer the batter to the prepared baking pan. Bake until a tester inserted into the center comes out mostly clean, about 40 minutes. Allow the brownies to cool completely in the pan before icing.
Meanwhile, make the ICING: in a double boiler (or a makeshift double boiler), add the butter and both chocolates. Melt them together and whisk until smooth. Add the sour cream and sugar, and whisk vigorously until all is combined and very smooth. Set the icing aside in a cool place and let it rest at least 1 hour, until it becomes thick and spreadable.
When the brownies and icing are ready, pour the thick icing on the top of the brownies and use a butter knife or an offset spatula to evenly spread the icing all over the brownies. Evenly sprinkle the remaining ½ cup toffee chips over the icing. Cut into squares and serve.

Milk Chocolate Brownies

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Alright, this is Blondies and Brownies week, so I need to make good on my promise and give y’all some brownies!

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{Why yes, Matt and I are those people who sneak off the edge of the brownies before I’ve photographed them!}

So, here’s a confession: I’m not a chocoholic, though I do thoroughly enjoy chocolate in moderation. But I usually do not care for milk chocolate. I much prefer bittersweet or semi-sweet for baking (or eating straight, for that matter). Milk chocolate is a little too sweet for me. So it is *only* because these milk chocolate brownies come from a trusted source that I was even willing to try them.

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But, I’m so happy that I did try them, because they are incredibly delicious! Even though I trust this recipe’s author (Jennie), I was still hesitant to take my first bite; I mean, I really don’t care for milk chocolate, y’all. But I loved them. They are extremely rich and fudgy, but not too sweet at all, which is my chief complaint about milk chocolate. The brownie texture was just perfect, and it got that crackly top that makes me so giddy.

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I will highly recommend these to all the brownie and chocolate lovers out there, even if you’re like me and don’t gravitate toward milk chocolate. These just might be your milk chocolate exception, like they are mine. Enjoy!

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{One Year Ago: Zucchini Olive Pizza, Tomato Scallion Short Cakes with Whipped Goat Cheese}

Source: slightly adapted from In Jennie’s Kitchen

Ingredients:
6 oz. milk chocolate, chopped
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup good quality unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1 stick (8 tbs) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
2 large eggs
3/4 cup plus 2 tbs granulated sugar

Directions:
Preheat the oven to 350 F. Cut a piece of parchment paper large enough to cover the bottom and sides of an 8-inch square baking pan. Grease one side of the parchment, and fit it (ungreased side down) into the pan. Set aside.
Add the chocolate and butter to a double boiler (or a glass bowl set atop a small pan of simmering water – make sure the water isn’t touching the bottom of the bowl). Let them both melt, then stir to smooth and combine. Add the vanilla extract, and stir to combine; set aside to cool slightly.
In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa, and salt; set aside.
Add the eggs and sugar to a clean, large bowl. Whisk until they become thick and pale yellow, 1 to 2 minutes. Whisk in the melted chocolate mixture. Using a rubber spatula, fold in the flour mixture.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan, spreading it evenly to the sides. You can give the pan a tap on the counter to help it settle, too. Bake for 30 minutes until the center is set and the edges gently pull slightly away from the sides of the pan. Let cool completely before cutting. (Sorry).

Champagne Chocolate Truffles

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Yesterday I made these insanely scrumptious little chocolate bites for my newest niece, who was born to my sister yesterday morning!!! [Well, okay, I didn’t make them for her, not literally anyway. No worries, no one in my family is feeding these to a newborn.]

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But yes, I made these in her honor! Miss Hannah Rose made her way into this world smoothly and safely, and everyone is doing very well. I’m so excited to have another niece (between my side and Matt’s, she is Niece 4!!), and I cannot wait to meet her in person. Welcome to the world, Hannah!

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Since champagne usually signals celebration, these elegant little bites seemed perfect for this wonderful occasion. They are supremely delicious, quite decadent and pretty rich. I found I didn’t want more than one at any given sitting. So they would be perfect for setting out at a cocktail party for a sweet ending.

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Recipe notes are in the recipe; this one appears complicated but really isn’t. A perfect way to celebrate a new baby! Enjoy!

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{One Year Ago: Rainier Cherry Mojitos}

Source: adapted from The Ottolenghi Cookbook by Yotam Ottolenghi

Ingredients:
2 oz. milk chocolate
12 oz. dark chocolate, divided
2/3 cup unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
5 ½ tbs champagne
2 tbs plus 2 tsp brandy
½ cup cocoa powder, for dusting

Directions:
Chunk up the milk chocolate and 7 oz. of the dark chocolate into little pieces. My preferred method is to leave the chocolate bar in is wrapping and beat it up with a meat mallet. You can also chop it with a sharp knife.
Place a glass bowl over a small pot of simmering water, making sure the water is not touching the bottom of the bowl. You can also use a double boiler if you have one. Add the milk chocolate plus the 7 oz. dark chocolate chunks to the bowl and let them melt, stirring with a spatula as you go. Once melted, add the champagne and brandy, and stir vigorously until the mixture blends again. Now add the butter, a little at a time, stirring to combine it as it melts. Once all the butter has been added and melted, remove the chocolate from the heat source.
Grease a small glass baker (I used an 8×8” square) and pour the hot chocolate mixture in. Refrigerate for a good 3 hours, until very firm.
When the chocolate is ready, chunk up the remaining 5 oz. of dark chocolate, and place a clean glass bowl over the same skillet of simmering water. Melt the chocolate until smooth, then remove it from the heat source. Let it cool about 10-15 minutes, until it is no longer steaming but still stirrable. Spread the cocoa powder onto a plate.
Remove the firm chocolate mixture from the fridge. Use a cookie scoop or melon baller to scoop small rounds of the firm chocolate, then drop those round truffles into the melted dark chocolate. Use a fork or 2 toothpicks to roll it around and coat it, then carefully lift it out and drop it into the cocoa powder. Roll it around to lightly coat. Remove to a plate. Repeat until you have used up all the firm chocolate. If the chocolate is getting too soft to work with, simply stick it back in the fridge for about 30 minutes. If your dark chocolate hardens during that time, zap it in the microwave for a few seconds and stir.
Once all your truffles are assembled, stick the plate in the refrigerator for about an hour so they can set up. Serve chilled or room temperature, your choice.

Chocolate Strawberry Short Cakes

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Happy June, everyone! The summer season is upon us, which I’m sure makes everyone very, very happy, especially those of us who had the brutal winters. And if your summers are like mine were growing up, then ‘tis the season for strawberry short cake!

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Strawberry short cake was quite the popular dessert in my family or origin all summer long. My mom would buy the little individual sponge cakes that are shaped like a small, shallow bowl, fill them with sweetened, lightly macerated strawberries, and freshly whipped cream.

And though I wasn’t one to pass up dessert of any kind as a kid (save coconut), I actually didn’t care for the sponge cakes all that much. Don’t get me wrong, I still ate them; I mean, it was cake – hello! But the minute I discovered that lots of people use biscuits as the cakey vehicle for their strawberry short cakes, well, I had to make the switch.

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And now for a twist – how about we make the biscuit part with chocolate, and then drizzle chocolate syrup over the whole thing? Yes, please! This version may not be traditional, but it’s really amazing. Matt described it as the love child of chocolate covered strawberries and regular strawberry short cake. He’s correct. And after you try this, you’ll conclude that they should hook up more often.

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Happy summer, everyone! Enjoy yourself some strawberry short cake, chocolate or not!

{One Year Ago: Chile de Arbol Salsa}

Source: adapted from The Bon Appetit Cookbook by Barbara Fairchild

Ingredients:

SHORT CAKES:
2 cups all-purpose flour
½ cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tbs baking powder
½ tsp kosher salt
8 tbs unsalted butter, very cold, chopped
1 cup heavy cream, whole milk, or buttermilk, or some combination thereof
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

2 pints fresh strawberries, hulled and sliced
1 tbs raw sugar
Chocolate syrup or fudge sauce
Sweetened whipped cream

Directions:
First, make the chocolate short cakes. Preheat your oven to 400 F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silpat. Set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, granulated sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt. Add the butter, and using a pastry blender or two knives, cut the butter into the flour mixture until it resembles the size of peas. Add the cream or milk, plus the chocolate chips. Stir gently together with a spatula until the flour mixture is completely coated and is starting to come together. Knead with well-floured hands a few times until it comes together completely.
Transfer the dough to a floured surface and pat it out to about 1 inch in height. Flour a 3 inch round biscuit cutter and stamp out 8 biscuits. Reroll the scraps if need be.
Transfer the rounds to the prepared baking sheet and bake for 12-15 minutes. Remove and let cool completely.
When you are ready to serve, add the strawberries to a large mixing bowl and toss thoroughly with the raw sugar. Let them sit while you prepare the whipped cream, or about 5-8 minutes.
To serve, split open the biscuits and lay the bottom half on a dessert plate. Top with a generous helping of macerated strawberries plus their juices. Drizzle chocolate syrup over the strawberries, then dollop with whipped cream. Place the biscuit top on top or on the side. Serve immediately.

Rocky Road Ice Cream, Plus an ICE CREAM Recipe Round-Up

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There simply are no words for how amazing this ice cream tastes. It’s so simple; I mean, rocky road ice cream can be found in the freezer section of *any* grocery or convenience store in America, and I’ve never been blown away by any commercially made version. But this homemade version here really knocked my socks off. Like I said, there are no words….

And, since there are no words, and I’m on vacation, which means I’m too relaxed and lazy to try and find any, I’m just going to give you the recipe. But not before I give you a massive ICE CREAM RECIPE ROUND-UP!!! I’ve collected 75, yep – seventy-five – ice cream recipes from around the food blogosphere for your perusal. I think you’ll all find something in here that you like. Enjoy!!

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1. Absinthe Ice Cream – David Lebovitz
2. Apple Cider Ice Cream – Chocolate Moosey
3. Apple Pie Ice Cream – The Texan New Yorker
4. Avocado Coconut Ice Cream – The Homesick Texan
5. Banana Pancake Ice Cream with Maple Brittle – Foxes Love Lemons
6. Banana Pudding Ice Cream – The Texan New Yorker
7. Biscoff Ice Cream – Magnolia Days
8. Black Garlic Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream – girlichef
9. Blackberry Chip Ice Cream – What Megan’s Making
10. Blood Orange Ice Cream – The View from Great Island
11. Blueberry, Lemon and Thyme Ice Cream – Hip Foodie Mom
12. Blueberry Muffin Ice Cream – How Sweet Eats
13. Bourbon Apple Crisp Ice Cream – the Bojon Gourmet
14. Brown Bread Ice Cream – David Lebovitz
15. Brown Sugar Bourbon Ice Cream – The Girl in the Little Red Kitchen
16. Butter Pecan Ice Cream – The Texan New Yorker
17. Buttermilk Ice Cream – Webicurean
18. Candied Cherry and Bacon Chocolate Chip Ice Cream – Chocolate Moosey
19. Cantaloupe Ice Cream – The Homesick Texan
20. Caramelized White Chocolate Ice Cream – David Lebovitz
21. Cardamom Ice Cream with Spiced Candied Pistachios – Savory Simple
22. Chocolate and Salty Peanut Butter Chunk Ice Cream – The Texan New Yorker
23. Chocolate Chip Coffee Ice Cream – Simply Scratch
24. Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Ice Cream – The Texan New Yorker
25. Chocolate Chip Cookies and Cream Pumpkin Marshmallow Ice Cream – How Sweet Eats

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26. Dark Chocolate Ice Cream – Baked Bree
27. Date, Rum and Pecan Ice Cream – Brown Eyed Baker
28. Dulce de Leche Ice Cream – Smitten Kitchen
29. Fennel Ice Cream – Smitten Kitchen
30. Fluffernutter Chip Ice Cream – How Sweet Eats
31. Fried Ice Cream – Brown Eyed Baker
32. Ginger Ice Cream with Honey-Sesame Brittle – Food 52
33. Grapefruit Curd Ice Cream – Savory Simple
34. Honey Lavender Ice Cream – The Homesick Texan
35. Kabocha Vanilla Chai Ice Cream – Food 52
36. Key Lime Pie Ice Cream – Good Life Eats
37. KitKat Ice Cream – Baked Bree
38. Lemon Speculoos Ice Cream – Chocolate Moosey
39. Lime Zest Ice Cream – girlichef
40. Malted Chocolate Ice Cream – The Texan New Yorker
41. Mango Ice Cream – What Megan’s Making
42. Maple Gingerbread Cookie Dough Ice Cream – Tracey’s Culinary Adventures
43. Mexican “Hot” Chocolate Ice Cream – The Texan New Yorker
44. Milk Chocolate Black Pepper Ice Cream – David Lebovitz
45. Mint Chocolate Cookies and Cream Ice Cream – The Texan New Yorker
46. Mint Julep Ice Cream – Simply Recipes
47. Nutella Brownie Cheesecake No-Churn Ice Cream – Cupcakes and Kale Chips
48. Nutella Swirl Ice Cream – What Megan’s Making
49. Oatmeal Raisin Ice Cream – Brown Eyed Baker
50. Peach Pecan Ice Cream – The Homesick Texan

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51. Peanut Butter Ice Cream  – The Texan New Yorker
52. Pistachio Nut Ice Cream – Brown Eyed Baker
53. Pumpkin Cheesecake Ice Cream – Melanie Makes
54. Pumpkin Ice Cream – The Texan New Yorker
55. Red Velvet Ice Cream – Pale Yellow
56. Reisling Ice Cream – The Texan New Yorker
57. Rhubarb Crumble Ice Cream – Take a Megabite
58. Roquefort-Honey Ice Cream – David Lebovitz
59. Salty Nuts Ice Cream – Spoon Fork Bacon
60. Shiner Bock Ice Cream – The Homesick Texan
61. S’Mores Ice Cream – The Texan New Yorker
62. Sorghum Syrup and Toasted Walnut Ice Cream – The Texan New Yorker
63. Strawberry Fennel Ice Cream – Food 52
64. Strawberry Ice Cream with Guajillo and Lime – The Homesick Texan
65. Strawberry Lemonade Ice Cream – Chocolate Moosey
66. Strawberry Pop Tart Ice Cream – Foxes Love Lemons
67. Strawberry Short Cake Ice Cream – Heather Christo
68. Strawberry Sour Cream Ice Cream – Confections of a Foodie Bride
69. Toasted Almond Fudge Ripple Ice Cream – Brown Eyed Baker
70. Thin Mint Cookie Ice Cream – Hip Foodie Mom
71. Tin Roof Ice Cream – The Texan New Yorker
72. True Mint Ice Cream – Foxes Love Lemons
73. Vanilla Ice Cream with Chocolate Peanut Butter Brittle – The Texan New Yorker
74. White Chocolate Buttermint Ice Cream – How Sweet Eats
75. White Chocolate Habanero Ice Cream – Confections of a Foodie Bride

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{One Year Ago: Mango Liquado, Cream Cheese Kolaches, Better Than Taco Bell Mexican Pizza}

Source: The Perfect Scoop by David Lebovitz

Ingredients:
2 cups heavy cream
3 tbs unsweetened cocoa powder
5 oz. semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate, or a combination of the two, chopped
1 cup whole milk
¾ cup granulated sugar
Pinch of kosher salt
5 large egg yolks
½ tsp vanilla extract
1 ½ cups mini marshmallows
1 cup roasted peanuts, coarsely chopped

Directions:
Place 1 cup cream and the cocoa powder in a medium saucepan. Whisk to combine, then warm over medium-low heat for a few minutes. Once it is warm, bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer at a very low boil for 30 seconds, whisking constantly. Remove from the heat and add the chopped chocolate, stirring until smooth. Then stir in the remaining cup of cream. Pour the mixture into a large mixing bowl, scraping the saucepan as thoroughly as possible. Set a mesh strainer on top of the bowl.
Add the milk, sugar, and salt to the same saucepan and heat until warm. Do not boil. In a separate medium bowl, whisk together the egg yolks. Shut off the heat, then slowly pour about ½ a cup of the warm milk mixture into the egg yolks, whisking constantly. Then, also whisking constantly, pour the egg yolk mixture back into the saucepan with the remaining milk mixture.
Set the saucepan over medium-low heat and stir constantly until the mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. This will take around 5 minutes. Pour the custard through the strainer and into the bowl with the chocolate mixture. Stir until smooth, then add the vanilla. Let this cool to room temperature, stirring occasionally to avoid getting the skin on top. You can expedite this process with an ice bath.
Once it is cooled to room temperature, chill thoroughly in the refrigerator. Once chilled, churn in your ice cream maker according to manufacturer’s instructions. In the last 5 minutes of churning, add the marshmallows and peanuts. Let the ice cream maker incorporate them into the ice cream.
Transfer to a container and let it set up in the freezer for about 2 hours before serving.

Fudge Chocolate Waffles

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What do y’all think about waffles for dessert? Now there’s an idea. The concept behind these waffles reminded me of being in Brussels with Matt a couple years ago; Belgians are unlike Americans in that they never eat waffles for breakfast – they are dessert only over there. Of course these waffles are not the same style of the ones you can get from all the street vendors in Brussels. Those are yeasty and not chocolate. These do not have yeast and have a lot of chocolate. But the dessert aspect is very reminiscent.

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And of course these were delicious! Rich and chocolaty, with the slight crunch of chocolate chips and the walnuts, it was like making brownies in your waffle iron. Sort of. I mean, they were still distinctly waffles.

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While this isn’t really a make-ahead dessert, it is a terrific single-serving dessert for a small group of people. I could definitely see busting this out at the end of a small dinner party for a unique and impressive sweet ending to the evening. And I suppose you could certainly make the batter ahead of time, then cook up the waffles after dinner. I only served these to myself and Matt, so I can’t say for sure, but I think your guests would be happy and impressed. Matt was on a work call when I plated these up for us, and he all but hung up in the person’s face to get to these. Just sayin’!

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{One Year Ago: Malted Waffles}

Source: adapted from The King Arthur Flour Baker’s Companion

Ingredients:
1 large egg
6 tbs unsalted butter, melted
½ tsp vanilla extract
½ cup buttermilk
½ cup all-purpose flour
6 tbs granulated sugar
¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
¼ tsp baking powder
¼ tsp baking soda
Pinch of kosher salt
Pinch of ground nutmeg
¼ cup chopped walnuts
¼ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
Vanilla ice cream, for serving
Chocolate syrup, for serving

Directions:
In a medium mixing bowl, combine the egg, butter, and vanilla. Beat with a whisk until light, about 1-2 minutes. Blend in the buttermilk, then flour, sugar, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and nutmeg. Gently fold in the walnuts and chocolate chips with a spatula.
Grease your waffle iron and cook the waffles according to manufacturer’s instructions.
Serve 1 waffle per person. To assemble, while the waffle is still warm, place a scoop of ice cream in the center. Drizzle chocolate syrup to taste over the ice cream and the waffle. Garnish with extra walnuts, if desired. Dig in!
This recipe as written will make 4-5 waffles, depending on the size of your waffle maker.

Banana Chocolate Whoopie Pies

Banana Chocolate Whoopie Pies

I have a dream…. A dream that one day…. I will live in a household…. where the people in that household actually *eat* the bananas in the few days after they’ve been purchased. When those bananas are still yellow. When those bananas are actually ripe and perfect for peeling and eating.

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I have a dream…. A dream that someday…. me and my household will not consist of people who always let bananas sit on the counter, neglected, until they go black. That someday, me and my household will not forget that the bananas were even purchased in the first place. That someday, me and my household will no longer be people who only notice the bananas’ very existence when they are overripe and only acceptable for baked goodies.

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But, today, my dream is still only a dream. A couple of weeks ago, I bought a bunch of five beautiful, still-slightly-green bananas; I ate one; the other unnamed person in my household ate none. And that explains why, a couple days ago, I noticed four black bananas on the counter. And what could I do but make these whoopie pies?

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So here I am, sharing with you yet another baked creation that exists only because me and my household cannot seem to manage to eat our bananas. Maybe we subconsciously feel we do not need potassium. Or maybe we subconsciously (and consciously!) like the banana baked treats. Because we do keep buying bananas, despite our abysmal track record. In the meantime, please enjoy these delicious and positively addictive cookie sandwiches.

Banana Chocolate Whoopie Pies

To prove my point, here is a list of other banana baked treats made because I let bananas go black:

Banana Split Brownies
Banana Dark Chocolate Mini Muffins
Iced Banana Cookies
Banana Buttermilk Waffles
Banana Pecan Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting
Banana Split Cheesecake Bars
Bourbon Banana Bread
Strawberry Banana Bread

Banana Chocolate whoopie pies

{One Year Ago: Meatless Muffulettas}

Source: adapted from The Good Stuff Cookbook by Spike Mendelsohn

Ingredients:
COOKIES:
4 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground cloves
2 cups granulated sugar
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
2 large eggs
4-5 overripe bananas

FILLING:
6 oz. cream cheese
3 tbs half-and-half
2 scant cups granulated sugar
2 oz. unsweetened baking chocolate

Directions:
First make the COOKIES. Preheat your oven to 350 F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment or silpats. Set aside.
In a medium to large bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and cloves. Set aside.
In the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the sugar and butter until light and fluffy. With the stand mixer on medium-low, add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Peel the bananas, then, with the mixer still running, break them up into chunks and add the chunks, one at a time, to the mixer. Let them become completely incorporated into the batter.
Now, with the mixer still on medium-low, add the flour mixture a little at a time, until it is just incorporated into the batter. Shut off the mixer.
Grease a cookie scoop or a couple of larger cereal spoons and drop the batter onto the prepared baking sheets by tablespoonfuls. Bake in the preheated oven for 12 to 15 minutes, until the tops of the cookies spring back when gently touched and the edges are golden brown.
Transfer the cookies to cooling racks and cool completely before assembling the whoopie pies.
In the meantime, make the FILLING. In a medium saucepan over medium-low heat, combine all the filling ingredients. Stirring occasionally, let them all melt together until smooth. Remove from the heat and cool completely. You can refrigerate the filling for a bit if desired.
When everything has cooled, assemble the whoopie pies. Take one cookies, and spread some of the chocolate filling on it. Top with another cookie and place on a plate or cooling rack. Continue, until all have been assembled.
Eat one, and try to stop at that. An hour later, call someone to come take the needle out of your arm.

Nutella Pie

nutella pie

Who doesn’t love Nutella? Though I’ve heard rumors of a class of persons who dislike this beautiful stuff, I’m certainly not aware of anyone that I know personally who is of that species falls into that camp.

Nutella pie

Matt introduced me to Nutella when we began dating; when we met I actually hadn’t heard of it (gasp!), and I think he might have actually rethought things between us had I disliked it. No worries though, I’m now a fiend!

Nutella pie

In other related news, I picked up a brand new, just off the presses cookbook last week – First Prize Pies by Allison Kave. I couldn’t help it, y’all. It’s a wonderful book, and when I flipped through and saw her recipe for Nutella Pie, I knew that what to make first had already been decided.

Nutella Pie

Nutella Pie

So I made it; we ate it; we loved it! I think you should know, this pie is quite rich. You only need a small slice to satisfy your dessert craving. Also, the recipe says to let it set up for 1 hour, and that’s fine, but if you want it set up completely, best to leave it overnight. And, that’s it! Enjoy this one, all you Nutella loving compatriots!

Nutella pie

Nutella Pie

{One year ago: Cranberry Orange Waffles}

Source: slightly adapted from First Prize Pies by Allison Kave

Ingredients:
CRUST:
1 ½ cups (175 grams) finely ground chocolate cookie crumbs, from chocolate wafer cookies
6 tbs unsalted butter, melted

PIE:
2 cups Nutella
1 ½ cups mascarpone cheese, or cream cheese, or a combination of both, at room temperature
¼ tsp kosher salt
½ cup chopped toasted hazelnuts

Directions:
First make the crust. Preheat your oven to 350 F. Add the melted butter to the cookie crumbs and stir to mix thoroughly. The mixture should feel like wet sand.
Grease a 9” regular (not deep-dish) pie plate and dump the cookie crumbs onto the plate. Using your hands, press the crumbs into an even layer on the bottom and up the sides of the plate. Chill for 15 minutes. Then bake the crust for 10 minutes, or until fragrant. Remove and allow to cool completely.
Meanwhile, make the pie filling. In a large bowl, using a hand mixer (or in the bowl of a stand mixer using a whisk attachment), beat together the Nutella, mascarpone, and salt until light and fluffy. Spread the filling into the cooled pie shell, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm, at least 1 hour and up to overnight.
When ready to serve, sprinkle the hazelnuts across the pie. Slice into wedges and serve. Keep any leftovers in the refrigerator.