Tag Archives: chocolate

Candy Cane Brownie Bites

candy cane brownie bites | pale yellowI almost didn’t share this recipe, it seemed too easy.  But then I remembered that people like easy, simple recipes that can be whipped up in a few minutes.  The first time I made these brownies, it was after work to bring to a church group meeting I had to leave for in about an hour and a half.  In less than 90 minutes I had homemade, from scratch brownies cut and ready to go!

candy cane brownie bites | pale yellowThis brownie recipe is my absolute favorite and is so versatile.  It’s dressed up for Christmas with a little peppermint extract and crushed candy canes on top.  Cut into small pieces it makes a for a delightful hostess gift of shared treat.  The holidays feature so many desserts, it’s best to provide everyone with small bites!

candy cane brownie bites | pale yellowI brought these to Andrea’s lovely holiday party and a guest asked me if they were soft.  Two questions – where does one find non-soft brownies? Who would bring hard brownies to a party?  Clearly my sarcasm could not be contained!  These brownies are deliciously soft, moist, fudgy, peppermint-y, and easy.  Whip up a batch now, anyone can do it!

candy cane brownie bites | pale yellowTwo Years Ago – Eggnog Cookies

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Candy Cane Brownie Bites

Adapted from MMMMM Brownies

Yield – 8” x 8” pan, 36 bites

 

1/2 cup sugar

2 tablespoons butter

2 tablespoons water

1 teaspoon instant coffee

10 ounces bittersweet chocolate chips

2 eggs

1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract

2/3 cup flour

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

4 mini candy canes crushed

  1. Preheat the oven to 325 ˚F.  Grease an 8” x 8” square pan and line with parchment paper leaving an overhang.  Grease that too.
  2. In a medium saucepan melt the butter, sugar, water, and instant coffee.  When melted add in the chocolate chips and stir until combined and melted.  Add in the eggs one at a time and then the peppermint extract, stir to combine.  Add in the flour, soda, and salt mixing until just combined.
  3. Pour the brownie batter in the prepared pan and sprinkle with the crushed candy canes, press them in slightly.
  4. Bake for 20-25 minutes until the top is shiny and crusty and a toothpick comes out almost clean.  DO NOT OVER BAKE!
  5. Let cool slightly and then slice and serve.  For bites, I remove the whole brownie from the pan and cut into 9 large pieces.  Then, I cut each ninth into 4, placing in a mini cupcake wrapper for maximum cuteness.candy cane brownie bites | pale yellow
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Buckeye Cookies

Buckeye Cookies | Pale Yellow for the FB Cookie Swap 2014So many cookie swaps, so little time!  Today it’s the FB Cookie Swap from the lovely Julie of The Little Kitchen and Lindsey of Love and Olive Oil.  After last year’s fun, I could resist doing it again!  Instead of peppermint + chocolate, I went with another one of my favorite pairings chocolate + peanut butter.

Buckeye Cookies | Pale Yellow for the FB Cookie Swap 2014I sent out some great cookies, no bragging intended.  But they were really, really tasty!  I had to make a double batch so I would have plenty to mail out plus enough to save for photographing when I was able to get some weekend sunlight.  This time of year is brutally limited for natural light.  I ate at least one of these cookies everyday for breakfast without fail, I couldn’t resist.  These cookies have everything a traditional buckeye has plus a brownie base.  To be fair, I know they sort of look like turds, but the inside is beautiful!  I’m just going to call it like I see it…Buckeye Cookies | Pale Yellow for the FB Cookie Swap 2014A crispy, fudgy bottom with a sweet, creamy peanut butter filling is hard to resist; add chocolate on top and I’m swooning!  I’m glad I had so many cookies leftover for eating and sharing with local friends!  I hope Ruthy of Omeletta, Susan of That Susan Williams, and Stephanie of Steph’s Bite by Bite enjoyed them as much as I did!

Buckeye Cookies | Pale Yellow for the FB Cookie Swap 2014When you’re receiving a dozen cookies from three different bloggers PLUS eating leftover cookies in your own kitchen, it is best to share the bounty with coworkers.  Surprisingly, not everyone was okay with eating cookies from strangers.  The weird thing is, even though I don’t know anyone in the swap IRL, it does not seem strange and the bloggers seem familiar.  Everyone is in their kitchen doing their thing and blogging about it just like me.  I love that we are able to share are goodies with others.  It’s the best we have until smells and tastes can be transmitted through the interwebs!fbcookieswap2014_woodLGI was super fortunate to receive an amazing selection of cookies!  Mieke of Mieke Z Mackay sent lovely oatmeal cookies with chocolate chips and nuts; salty sweet deliciousness!  Amy of Club Narwhal sent delightfully dunk-able biscotti; chocolate and vanilla with cranberries and pistachios!  Last, but not least, Tux of Brooklyn Homemaker sent some divine gingerbread linzer cookies with a white chocolate-orange ganache filling; I can’t wait until he posts the recipe so I can make another batch!  A successful cookie swap for 2014, I can’t wait for 2015.  As Lynn said, “I must be doing something right!”Buckeye Cookies | Pale Yellow for the FB Cookie Swap 2014

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Buckeye Cookies

Adapted from OMG Chocolate Desserts

Yield – 56 cookies

 

16 ounces bittersweet chocolate chips

4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature

4 eggs

1 1/4 cups sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 cup flour

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 cups creamy peanut butter

2 cups powdered sugar

10 ounces semisweet chocolate chips

1 tablespoon shortening

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 ˚F and line cookie sheets with parchment paper.
  2. In a double boiler, melt the the chocolate and butter until smooth.  Meanwhile, whisk together the eggs, vanilla, and sugar in a medium bowl.
  3. Slowly add the melted chocolate to the eggs, stirring the whole time until well incorporated.
  4. Sift in the flour, baking powder, and salt.  Stir until completely mixed in.
  5. Use a 1-tablespoon scoop to portion the dough on the parchment-lined cookie sheet.  The cookies do not spread much, so the dough can be fairly close together.
  6. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until just set.  Let sit on the cookie sheet for 2 minutes before transferring to a wire rack.
  7. While the cookies are baking, mix together the peanut butter and powdered sugar until well combined.  Roll into small balls.
  8. As soon as the cookies come out of the oven, while they are resting on the cookie sheet, smush a ball of peanut butter in the center of each cookie.
  9. Once cookies are cooled completely, melt the semisweet chocolate chips and shortening together in a double boiler until smooth.
  10. Dip the top of each cookie in the chocolate and let harden on a rack before packaging.Buckeye Cookies | Pale Yellow for the FB Cookie Swap 2014

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Chocolate Dipped Pistachio Shortbread

chocolate dipped pistachio shortbread | pale yellowThe last week has reeked havoc on my kitchen.  Every night has a sink full of dishes and flour on the floor.  But it’s all worth it because I can now bring you seven straight days of holiday cookies and treats.  Holiday baking is my favorite time of year!

chocolate dipped pistachio shortbread | pale yellowIt’s always a struggle between old favorites and new recipes.  My only limitations are the hours in the evening and Tupperware. Here is one new recipe inspired by the SRC Cookie Carnival.

chocolate dipped pistachio shortbread | pale yellowA Cookie Carnival?  How could I resist?  The Secret Recipe Club did a holiday cookie post and I could not resist.  I was assigned Karen from Karen’s Kitchen Stories.  Her blog is lovely and features recipes she makes for her family.  We have similar styles in that we both love to share recipes, slightly adapted, from cookbooks, blogs, and magazines.  Blogging is fun hobby that allows us to share treats with others.

scr club christmasThese cookies are gorgeous, easy, and super tasty!  Their light green color is perfect for a Christmas cookie tray and I love the saltiness from the pistachios on the outside.  The cookies have everything you want – crispy, crunchy, salty, sweet, and chocolate!  The flavor is a subtle pistachio taste that is delightful!

chocolate dipped pistachio shortbread | pale yellowTwo Years Ago – Candy Cane Truffles

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Chocolate Dipped Pistachio Shortbread

Adapted from Karen’s Kitchen Stories

Yield – 24-32 cookies

 

2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter, room temperature

1/4 cup sugar

1 box (3.4 oz) instant pistachio pudding mix

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

8.2 ounces flour

10 ounces bittersweet chocolate

1 tablespoon shortening

1/2 cup pistachios, chopped finely

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 ˚F and grease a 9×13” pan with shortening.  Cut a sheet of parchment paper to fit the bottom of the pan and grease that as well.
  2. Cream the butter and sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer with a paddle attachment until light and fluffy.  Add in the pudding, salt, and vanilla.  Mix until well combined and scrape the bowl as needed.
  3. Add the flour and mix on low until just combined.
  4. Press the mixture as evenly as possible in the prepared pan.  If your hands get warm and sticky (mine always do), wet them with cold water and dry.
  5. Bake for 35-45 minutes until the edges just begin to brown.  Remove from the oven and immediately use a bench scraper or knife to cut the shortbread into pieces.
  6. Let cool completely in the pan.
  7. Melt the chocolate and shortening in the bowl of a double boiler until smooth.  Chop the pistachios while the chocolate is melting.
  8. Dip a third of each cookie in the chocolate and then press into the chopped pistachios.  Let dry on a cooling rack with parchment paper underneath to catch drips.
  9. Allow the chocolate to harden before packaging.chocolate dipped pistachio shortbread | pale yellow

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Filed under Chocolate, Christmas, Cookies

Shortbread Dipped in Chocolate and Peanut Butter

Shortbread Dipped in Chocolate and Peanut Butter | Pale YellowCookies, cookies, cookies!  They have been churning out my kitchen at a rapid pace.  I finally made time to decide on recipes for my Christmas cookie plate and have started baking.  It feels good!  However, the flour all over the floor and never-ending sink-full of dishes does not feel so good.  I’m really missing the dishwasher right about now.

Shortbread Dipped in Chocolate and Peanut Butter | Pale YellowNext week will be cookie week; six straight days of cookies that could adorn your holiday dessert table.  After a fall of not blogging as much as I would like, I’m trying to make up for it in December.  Clearly I have extra time without reading and writing about the conservation issues facing the world’s biomes.

Shortbread Dipped in Chocolate and Peanut Butter | Pale YellowThese cookies are the result of trying to use up my hoarded stock of peanut butter chips and chocolate chips.  Whenever they are on sale, I tend to buy a few bags, but the drawer I keep them in is now over filling.  In fact, due to a recent $2.99 sale on Ghiradelli chocolate chips, my stash is now kept in a grocery bag #BakerProblems.

Shortbread Dipped in Chocolate and Peanut Butter | Pale YellowI’m beginning to adore shortbread cookies.  They are crisp and almost melt in your mouth with a touch of sweetness.  The initial plainness lends itself well to adding any and every flavor.  Look out for some more shortbread cookies coming your way, they are an easy and delightful way to add variety to the Christmas cookie line up!

Shortbread Dipped in Chocolate and Peanut Butter | Pale YellowTwo Years Ago – Pecan Bark

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Shortbread Dipped in Chocolate and Peanut Butter

Adapted from Dine and Dish

Yield – 30 cookies

 

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature

pinch of salt

1 vanilla bean, split and seeds scraped out

1/2 cup powdered sugar

2 cups flour

1 cup peanut chips

2 tablespoon coconut oil, divided

1 cup bittersweet chocolate chips

  1. Preheat to oven to 350 ˚F and line two cookie sheets with parchment paper.
  2. Add the butter and salt to the bowl of a stand mixer with a paddle attachment.  Split the vanilla bean and scrape the seeds from inside, add to the butter.  Beat until pale yellow and then beat in the powdered sugar until well combined.
  3. Add the flour and mix until just combined.  The dough will appear crumbly, but stays together if your squeeze it into a ball.
  4. Flour your surface and rolling pin.  Roll the dough to 1/4” thick and cut into circles.
  5. Place the circles on the lined cookie tray.  Bake for 18-20 minutes or until the cookies just begin to brown.
  6. Let cool completely on a wire rack before dipping.
  7. Melt the peanut butter chips and 1 tablespoon coconut oil in a double boiler.  Dip part of each cookie into the mixture and place on a wire rack.  Refrigerate the wire rack and cookies to speed up the hardening process.
  8. Meanwhile, melt the chocolate chips with the remaining tablespoon of coconut oil.  Dip the cookies and allow to harden on a wire rack.Shortbread Dipped in Chocolate and Peanut Butter | Pale Yellow

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Chocolate Cupcakes with Peppermint Swirl Frosting

chocolate cupcakes with peppermint swirl frosting | pale yellowTwo Years Ago – Boozy Cupcakes

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Chocolate Cupcakes with Peppermint Swirl Frosting

Yield – 10 cupcakes

Chocolate Cupcakes

3/4 cup flour

1/3 cup cocoa

3/4 cup sugar

1/2 + 1/8 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 egg

1/4 cup vegetable oil

1 teaspoon vanilla

3/8 cup buttermilk

1/3 cup hot coffee

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 ˚F.
  2. Sift together the flour, cocoa powder, sugar, soda, powder, and salt into the bowl of a stand mixer.  Mix together on low with the paddle attachment.
  3. Beat together the eggs, oil, vanilla, and milk in a small bowl and add to the dry ingredients.  Mix until just combined and then scrape down the sides.
  4. Turn on the mixer and add the hot coffee slowly until well combined.
  5. Fill cupcakes liners with a not quite full basic ice cream scoop and bake for 15-18 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into a cupcake comes out clean.
  6. Turn out of the cupcake tin and allow to cool completely before frosting.

Peppermint Swirl Swiss Meringue Buttercream Frosting

100 grams of  egg whites

1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons sugar

pinch of salt

3/4 cup (12 tablespoons) unsalted butter, room temperature

1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract

red food coloring

mini candy canes for garnish

  1. Add 1 inch of water to a small saucepan.  Add the egg whites, sugar, and salt to the bowl of a stand mixer.  Place the bowl in the saucepan.  Heat and whisk until the mixture is smooth and no longer gritty.
  2. Move the bowl to the stand mixer with the whisk attachment.  Beat on high speed until the bowl is cool and the meringue is whipped.
  3. Add the butter one tablespoon at a time while the mixer whisks on high speed.  If the frosting becomes runny or curdles, just keep beating at it will smooth out.
  4. Beat in the extract.  Remove half the frosting.  To the remaining frosting add a bit of red food coloring, mix until the desired color is reached.
  5. Add the red to one disposable piping bag and the white frosting to another piping bag.
  6. Place both piping bags in a larger piping bag with a large star tip.  Squeeze lightly until both colors are coming out.
  7. Swirl on each cupcake.  Decorate with a mini candy can if desired.

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Filed under Cupcakes, Simple & Sweet

Carrot Oatmeal Cookies with Cranberries and Chocolate Chips

carrot oatmeal cookies with cranberries and chocolate chips | pale yellowI come from a family of sweet tooth-s; everyone takes “small slivers” of each dessert and there are always plenty of cookies, pies, cakes, and puddings at family gatherings.  My grandpa keeps a stock of sweets like Honey Buns and a full cookie jar.  Since he moved into a new place, I wanted to make sure he had some sweet treats to keep him full.

carrot oatmeal cookies with cranberries and chocolate chips | pale yellowWhile perusing Cookie Princess’s blog Secrets from the Cookie Princess for this month’s Secret Recipe Club, I looked for a recipe that would be “grandfather” friendly!  A recipe with oatmeal, carrots, and cranberries just scream grandparents, but trust me, people all ages will enjoy these cookies.  I added chocolates because, why not!  With the applesauce, carrots, and oatmeal, it almost feels like you could justify eating these cookies for breakfast.  Do it!  That’s my favorite part of the holiday season, eating cookies every day for breakfast; at least these are healthier!

newsrcbannerI still haven’t finalized my holiday baking list, there are too many ideas and recipes with too little time.  Now that I’m done with grad school for the semester, I can have all fun!  These cookies are all the fun too!  They are super moist from the applesauce and tender from the oatmeal and carrots.  The cranberries and chocolate chips add texture, flavor, and interest.  Finally, the cinnamon and freshly grated nutmeg add the best of flavors.  It’s time to make cookies!carrot oatmeal cookies with cranberries and chocolate chips | pale yellow

One Year Ago – What I Learned This Week #9

Two Years Ago – Vanilla Vodka Chai Cocktail

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Carrot Oatmeal Cookies with Cranberries and Chocolate Chips

Adapted from Secrets from a Cookie Princess

Yield – 38 cookies 2-tablespoon cookies

 

1/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature

3/4 cup packed brown sugar

3/4 cup sugar

1 egg

2/3 cup unsweetened applesauce

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

3/4 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 of a whole nutmeg grated

3/4 cup flour

1/2 cup whole wheat pastry flour

1 1/2 cups old fashioned oats

1 cup shredded carrots

1 cup dried cranberries

1 cup mini chocolate chips

  1. Cream together the butter and sugars in the bowl of a stand mixer with a paddle attachment until light and fluffy.  Add the egg, applesauce, and vanilla and beat until well combined.  Scrape the bowl as needed.
  2. Add in the baking powder, soda, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg.  Mix until well incorporated.  Add the flours and mix until barely combined.  Mix in the oats, carrots, cranberries, and chocolate chips until just mixed.
  3. Stir with a rubber spatula to make sure everything is well incorporated.  Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least one hour or overnight.
  4. Preheat the oven to 350 ˚F and line your cookie sheets with parchment paper.
  5. Use a two-tablespoon scoop to portion the dough on the cookie sheet about 2 inches apart.  Bake for 15 minutes or until just set.
  6. Move to a wire rack to cool completely.carrot oatmeal cookies with cranberries and chocolate chips | pale yellow

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Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

Easy Penaut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies | Pale YellowIn no particular order here are some things that happened to me this week.  I was trapped in my bedroom and and couldn’t get my bedroom door open.  After unscrewing my doorknob and prying off one hinge I was still stuck, sweating profusely despite the chilly temperature, and was crying on my bedroom floor because I was getting panicky.  Did I mention that this was all happening at 6:30 a.m.?  I finally texted my landlords and after several keys and brute strength, they broke open the door for me.  Luckily I was only a little late for work and no longer have a doorknob on bedroom door.

Easy Penaut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies | Pale YellowI met Bill Nye the Science Guy!  He is incredibly bright, thoughtful, and funny.  As soon as grad school work dies down, I can’t wait to read his newest book, which I have autographed!  There are few things better than geeking out with science teachers.

Easy Penaut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies | Pale YellowBoth of my grad classes have term paper rough drafts this due at the beginning of the week and because of my busy schedule, high sleep needs, and procrastination, I was down to the wire with due dates.  Sunday I made myself a nice schedule to write my paper and was completing my midday activity of writing a paper at Panera when I went to insert a photo and Word shut down.  Oh no.  AutoRecovery saved me, but then that shut down and wouldn’t come back.  Cue panic.  Three hours  of work, good writing I might add, gone.  GONE!  Naturally I caps-locked-yelled at Lynn and started crying in the middle of Panera.  What’s a girl to do?

Easy Penaut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies | Pale YellowOne word – cookies.  Two words – easy cookies.  Peanut butter, an egg, some sugar, and a few little extras.  Mix it together and bake, boom cookies.  Adding mini chocolate chips is a delightful addition and I can’t believe I’ve never added chocolate chips to peanut butter cookies before.  Whether you’re having a great week and meeting Bill Nye or crying on your bedroom floor, these are an easy cookie to make you feel better.  And thankfully, I found my lost paper!Easy Penaut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies | Pale Yellow

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Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

Adapted from I Am Baker

Yield – 21 2-tablespoon cookies

 

1 cup creamy peanut butter

1/2 cup sugar

1/2 cup loosely packed brown sugar

1 egg

1 teaspoon baking soda

pinch of salt

splash of vanilla

1/2 cup mini chocolate chips

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 ˚F and line two cookie sheets with parchment paper.
  2. In a medium bowl cream together the peanut butter and sugars.  Stir in the egg, baking soda, salt, and vanilla until well combined.  Stir in the chocolate chips.
  3. Use a 2-tablespoon scoop to portion the dough on the cookie sheets.  Use a fork dipped in granulated sugar to make crosshatches.
  4. Bake for 8-10 minutes or just set.  Let cool for five minutes on the cookie sheet before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.Easy Penaut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies | Pale Yellow

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