10 Baking Secrets You Need to Know

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  • My Favorite Piping Tip
  • Pumpkin Cookie Butter Truffles

    How to make Pumpkin Cookie Butter Truffles

    Yield: about 22 truffles

    Prep Time: 30 minutes

    Ingredients

    For the truffles:

    3 ounces (85 grams) cream cheese, at room temperature
    2 tablespoons powdered sugar
    1/3 cup (75 grams) pumpkin puree
    1 3/4 cup (175 grams) Speculoos cookie crumbs (from about 23 cookies)
    1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
    1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
    1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
    1/8 teaspoon ground allspice

    For coating:

    16 ounces (454 grams) chocolate (any kind), finely chopped
    1 tablespoon coconut oil or shortening
    Crushed Speculoos cookies

    Directions

    In the bowl of a food processor, combine all filling ingredients. Pulse until well blended.

    Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Scoop the mixture into balls about 1-inch in diameter. I like to use this cookie scoop.

    Place the cookie balls in the freezer until well chilled, at least 1 hour or up to 1 day.

    When cookie balls are chilled, combine the chopped chocolate and oil in a medium microwave-safe bowl. Microwave in 30 second bursts, stirring between bursts, until just melted and smooth. Do not overheat.

    Drop each cookie ball into melted chocolate, coating evenly. Remove with a fork, gently tapping off excess chocolate. Place back on cookie sheet and decorate as desired. Repeat with the remaining cookie balls.

  • Butterscotch Browned Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

    How to make Butterscotch Browned Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

    Yield: 25 large cookies

    Prep Time: 25 minutes

    Cook: 15 minutes

    Ingredients

    2 sticks (227 grams) unsalted butter
    1 1/2 cups (187 grams) all-purpose flour
    1 cup (127 grams) bread flour
    1 teaspoon baking soda
    1 teaspoon baking powder
    1 teaspoon fine sea salt
    1/4 cup (50 grams) granulated sugar
    1 1/2 cups (300 grams) packed dark brown sugar
    2 large eggs plus 1 egg yolk, at room temperature
    2 teaspoons vanilla
    2 cups (200 grams) chocolate covered butterscotch caramels (see post above)
    1 cup (170 grams) semi sweet chocolate chips

    Directions

    In a small saucepan set over medium heat, melt the butter. Swirling the pan occasionally, continue to cook the butter. It should become foamy with audible cracking and popping noises. Once the crackling stops, continue to swirl the pan until the butter develops a nutty aroma and brown bits start to form at the bottom. Once the bits are amber in color, about 2 to 3 minutes after the popping stops, remove from heat and pour into a mixing bowl. Stir in the granulated sugar and dark brown sugar. Allow to cool for about 20 minutes to room temperature.

    In a medium bowl combine the flours, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.

    With an electric mixer, beat the cooled butter, granulated sugar, and brown sugar until well combined, about 1 to 2 minutes. Add the eggs, yolk, and vanilla, beating until combined. On low speed, gradually beat in the flour mixture. Stir in the chocolate chips and butterscotch caramels. Wrap dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 24 hours but no more than 72 hours.

    Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Line baking sheets with nonstick baking mats or parchment paper.

    Let dough sit at room temperature just until it is soft enough to scoop. Divide the dough into 3-tablespoon sized balls and drop onto prepared baking sheets. At this point you can freeze the dough balls until hard then transfer to an airtight container and store in the freezer for up to 2 months. Let sit at room temperature for 15 minutes before baking as directed.

    Bake for 12-15 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove from oven and let cool for 2 minutes before removing to wire racks to cool completely. Serve or store in an airtight container for 3 days.

  • Salted Caramel Apple Sheet Cake

    How to make Salted Caramel Apple Sheet Cake

    Yield: 36 servings

    Prep Time: 15 minutes

    Cook: 20 minutes

    Ingredients

    For the cake:

    2 cups (254 grams) all-purpose flour
    1/2 teaspoon baking soda
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    1 cup (200 grams) granulated sugar
    1 cup (200 grams) lightly packed light brown sugar
    1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    2 sticks (227 grams) unsalted butter
    1/2 cup (120 ml) buttermilk
    2 large eggs
    1 teaspoon vanilla
    2 cups (200 grams) peeled and chopped Granny Smith apples (about 2 medium apples)

    For the glaze:

    1 stick (113 grams) unsalted butter
    1/4 cup (60 ml) milk
    3 cups (375 grams) powdered sugar, sifted
    1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1/4 cup salted caramel sauce (homemade or store-bought)

    Directions

    Make the cake:

    Preheat the oven to 400°F. Butter or oil a 10-by-15-inch jellyroll pan or a 16-3/4 by 12-inch sheet pan.

    In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, salt, granulated sugar, brown sugar, and cinnamon.

    In a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, combine the butter with 1 cup water and heat until the butter melts. Bring to a boil. Once the mixture is boiling, remove from heat and add in the flour mixture. Add in the buttermilk, eggs, and vanilla. Gently stir in the apples.

    Pour the batter into the prepared pan, spreading evenly. Bake for 20 minutes if using a jelly roll pan, and about 17 minutes if using a half sheet pan, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Let cool in the pan on a wire rack for about 10 to 15 minutes.

    Make the glaze:

    Meanwhile, combine the butter and milk in a large heat-proof bowl. Microwave until the butter is melted. Gradually stir in the powdered sugar until combined. Stir in the vanilla and caramel until combined. Pour evenly over the warm cake. Let set for about 15 minute before slicing and serving.

    Adapted from Chef in Training

  • Pumpkin Cupcakes with Nutella Frosting

    How to make Pumpkin Cupcakes with Nutella Frosting

    Yield: 12 cupcakes

    Prep Time: 40 minutes

    Cook: 20 minutes

    Ingredients

    For the pumpkin cupcakes:

    1 and 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
    1 teaspoon baking powder
    1/4 teaspoon baking soda
    1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
    1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1 cup pumpkin puree
    1/2 cup canola or vegetable oil
    1/2 cup brown sugar
    1/4 cup granulated sugar
    2 large eggs
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract

    For the nutella frosting:

    3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
    1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons Nutella
    3 cups powdered sugar
    2 tablespoons heavy cream
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    pinch of salt

    Directions

    To make the pumpkin cupcakes:

    Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a 12-count muffin pan with cupcake liners and set aside.

    In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, pumpkin pie spice, cinnamon, and salt. Set aside.

    In a separate mixing bowl, mix together the pumpkin puree, oil, brown sugar, granulated sugar, eggs, and vanilla extract until fully combined. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix until just combined, making sure not to over mix the batter.

    Evenly distribute the batter between all 12 cupcake liners, only filling them about 2/3 of the way full, and gently smooth out the batter on top. Bake at 350°F for 16-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cupcake comes out clean.

    Remove from the oven and allow to cool for a few minutes. Remove the cupcakes from the pan and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

    To make the nutella frosting:

    In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or in a large mixing bowl using a hand-held mixer, beat the butter on medium speed for 1-2 minutes until smooth. Add in the Nutella and continue mixing for an additional minute until well combined. Add in the powdered sugar, heavy cream, vanilla, and salt and continue mixing on medium speed until fully combined, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.

    Pipe the frosting on the cooled cupcakes as desired.

  • How to Make Sunflower Cupcakes
  • How to Make Hydrangea Cupcakes
  • How to Make and Store Brown Sugar

    How to make and Store Brown Sugar

    Yield: Any amount needed

    Prep Time: 5 minutes

    Ingredients

    1 cup granulated sugar
    1 tablespoon unsulphured molasses for light brown sugar, 2 to 3 tablespoons for dark brown sugar

    Directions

    In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to combine the sugar and molasses until completely incorporated. Use or store in an airtight container. Use a brown sugar saver to keep it from hardening.

    If it does become hard, you can still add the soaked brown sugar saver to soften it. You can also add a slice of bread for a few hours, which will soften it again.

  • Ultimate Cheesecake

    How to make Ultimate Cheesecake

    Yield: about 12 servings

    Prep Time: 30 minutes

    Cook: 1 1/2 hours

    Ingredients

    For the crust:

    1 3/4 cups (230 grams) graham crackers crumbs (about 15 whole graham crackers)
    1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

    For the filling:

    2 pounds (907 grams) cream cheese, at room temperature
    1 1/4 cups (250 grams) granulated sugar
    1/2 cup (130 grams) sour cream
    1 lemon, zested
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    4 large eggs

    Boiling water, for the water bath

    For the topping:

    12 ounces (340 grams) fresh raspberries
    2 tablespoons granulated sugar
    1 teaspoon lemon juice

    Directions

    Preheat the oven to 325°F.

    Prepare a 9-inch springform pan for a water bath. Place a large square of heavy duty aluminum foil underneath the pan. Gently fold the edges up and around the pan. Repeat twice so there’s three sheets of foil to ensure a waterproof seal. Gently fold the top of the foil around the edge of the pan.

    Make the crust:

    In a medium bowl, combine the graham cracker crumbs, cinnamon, and butter until the mixture is moistened. Press into the bottom and halfway up the sides of a 9-inch nonstick springform pan. Bake for 10 minutes. Place on a wire rack to cool. Maintain oven temperature.

    Make the filling:

    In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to beat the cream cheese on medium speed until completely smooth and free of lumps. Add the sugar and beat until combined. Add in the sour cream, lemon zest, and vanilla. Add the eggs, one at a time, and beat until just combined. Be careful not to overmix.

    Pour the batter into the foiled-wrapped springform pan. Place the pan in a large roasting pan. Pour boiling water into the roasting pan until the water is about halfway up the sides of the cheesecake pan. Bake at 325°F for 1 1/2 hours, or until set and the top looks slightly dry. If the middle is slightly wobbly, that’s fine. Err on the side of underbaking rather than overbaking.

    Turn off the oven heat and crack the oven door open just by 1-inch. Let the cheesecake cool inside the oven for 1 hour.

    Remove the cheesecake from the oven and from the water bath, unwrap the foil, and transfer it to a cooling rack. Run a thin-bladed knife around the edge of the cake to make sure it’s not sticking to the sides (which can cause cracks as it cools). Let the cheesecake cool completely on the rack.

    Refrigerate until completely chilled, at least 4 hours or up to 3 days. Store the cheesecake uncovered to avoid creating condensation, which will create a mushy texture.

    Make the topping:

    In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine the filling ingredients. Heat, stirring and breaking up the raspberries often, until the raspberries release their juices and begin to form a sauce, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and press through a fine mesh strainer into a small bowl to remove the seeds. Let cool completely. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour before using.

    Release the cheesecake from the pan onto a cake stand or serving plate and top with the raspberry sauce. Serve.

  • Black Forest Cupcakes

    How to make Black Forest Cupcakes

    Yield: 16 cupcakes

    Prep Time: 1 hour 5 minutes

    Cook: 20 minutes

    Ingredients

    For the chocolate cupcakes:

    1 cup all purpose flour
    1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
    3/4 teaspoon baking powder
    1/2 teaspoon baking soda
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1/2 cup granulated sugar
    1/2 cup brown sugar
    1/3 cup oil
    1 large egg
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1/2 cup buttermilk
    1/2 cup boiling water
    1 teaspoon instant espresso powder

    For the cherry filling:

    2 cups pitted and halved sweet cherries
    1/4 cup granulated sugar
    1/4 cup water
    2 tablespoons cornstarch
    2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
    1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

    For the whipped cream:

    2 tablespoons water
    1 and 1/2 teaspoons unflavored gelatin
    1 and 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream
    1/3 cup powdered sugar
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract

    Directions

    To make the chocolate cupcakes:

    Preheat oven to 350°F. Line two 12-count cupcake pans with 16 cupcake liners and set aside.

    In a large mixing bowl, sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Whisk in the granulated sugar and brown sugar until well combined. Add in the oil, egg, vanilla extract, and buttermilk and mix until just combined.

    Add the instant espresso powder into the boiling water and mix until dissolved, then add to the mixing bowl. Mix with the rest of the ingredients until well combined, making sure not to over mix the batter. The batter will be thin, this is okay.

    Evenly distribute the batter between all 16 cupcakes liners, making sure to only fill them a little over half way full. Bake at 350°F for 18-20 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted into the cupcakes comes out clean. Remove from the oven and carefully remove the cupcakes from the pan. Transfer the cupcakes to a wire rack to cool.

    To make the cherry filling:

    Add the cherries, granulated sugar, lemon juice, water, and corn starch to a saucepan and mix until well combined. Heat over medium heat, stirring often, until the mixture has thickened. Remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla extract, then set aside to cool.

    To make the whipped cream:

    Pour the water in a small bowl and sprinkle the unflavored gelatin on top. Allow to sit for a few minutes. Transfer to the microwave and microwave for a few seconds until the gelatin has dissolved. Stir well and set aside to cool for a few minutes.

    In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, or in a large mixing bowl using a hand-held mixer, add the heavy whipped cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla and mix on medium speed until it starts to thicken. Turn the mixer to low, slowly pour in the gelatin, then continue mixing at medium-high speed until stiff peaks form.

    To make the cupcakes:

    Once the cupcakes and cherry filling have cooled, use a knife to cut out a hole in the center of each cupcake. Scoop about 1-1.5 tablespoons of the cherry filling into each cupcake. Then pipe the whipped cream on top. Garnish with chocolate shavings and a cherry on top!

    Chocolate cupcakes adapted from Hersheys Stabilized Whipped Cream adapted from Food.com

  • Peach Pie Milkshakes

    How to make Peach Pie Milkshakes

    Yield: 2 milkshakes

    Prep Time: 15 minutes

    Note: I like the color and texture that the peach skins provide, so I don’t bother peeling the skin. If you want a smoother texture feel free to peel the skin.

    Ingredients

    For the milkshakes:

    1 1/2 cups REAL® Seal vanilla ice cream (store-bought or homemade)
    1/2 cup REAL® Seal cold whole milk
    2 large ripe clean peaches, chopped
    2 tablespoons REAL® Seal sweetened condensed milk
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1 tablespoon light brown sugar
    1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

    For garnish:

    Whipped cream
    Ground cinnamon
    Gingersnap or Speculoos cookies, crushed
    Peach slices

    Directions

    Place all milkshake ingredients in a blender and blender until smooth. Pour into two milkshake glasses and top with whipped cream, crushed gingersnap cookies, and peach slices for garnish. Serve immediately.

  • No Bake Rocky Road Cheesecake

    How to make No Bake Rocky Road Cheesecake

    Yield: Makes one 9 inch cake

    Prep Time: 30 minutes

    Cook: 3 hours

    Ingredients

    Approximately 20 (200 grams) Oreo cookies
    1/4 cup (60 grams) unsalted butter
    2 and 1/2 cups (500 grams) cream cheese, room temperature
    1/4 cup (50 grams) graunlated or caster sugar
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1 and 1/2 cup (360 ml) thickened or heavy cream
    1 cup (150 grams) good quality semi-sweet or dark chocolate
    3/4 cup (105 grams) roasted peanuts
    2 cups (110 grams) mini marshmallows
    1/2 cup (75 grams) semi-sweet or dark chocolate, for decorating

    Directions

    Lightly grease a 9 inch (23 cm) springform baking tin with a little butter and set aside. Add your Oreo cookies (cream and all) to a food processor and blend until they resemble fine crumbs. If you don’t have a food processor, place them in a sandwich bag and bash with a rolling pin. Melt your butter in the microwave and add it to your crushed Oreos and whiz again (or stir well) until the mixture resembles wet sand. Pour your Oreo mixture into your prepared tin and press down gently to form an even layer. Pop in the fridge.

    Add your softened cream cheese,  sugar and vanilla to a large mixing bowl and beat with an electric mixer until smooth and creamy. In a separate bowl, add your cream and beat with an electric mixer until soft peaks form. Finally, melt your dark chocolate in the microwave until it is just melted – give it a good stir. Then add your chocolate to your cream cheese mixture and beat until smooth. Then gently fold through the whipped cream. Add 1 cup (55 grams) of mini marshmallows and 1/2 cup (35 grams) of roasted peanuts and stir through. Pour your cheesecake over the top of your Oreo cookie base, cover loosely with alfoil and refrigerate for at least 3 hours or overnight.

    When you are ready to serve, scatter the remaining 1/2 cup (35 grams) of roasted peanuts and 1 cup (55 grams) of mini marshmallows and lightly press them into the top of the cheesecake. Melt your extra chocolate in the microwave and then use a spoon to drizzle the melted chocolate all over the cheesecake. Cut and serve!

  • How to Make Bagel Bombs

    How to make Bagel Bombs

    Yield: 16 balls

    Prep Time: 30 minutes

    Cook: 30 minutes

    If you don’t have instant yeast, you can always substitute with the same amount of active dry yeast. Simply add the active dry yeast to the warm water and let it proof for 5 minutes before proceeding with the recipe.

    If you can’t barley malt syrup (which I find on Amazon or at Whole Foods), use brown sugar.

    Ingredients

    For the dough:

    1 tablespoon instant yeast
    4 cups (482 grams) bread flour
    2 teaspoons salt
    1 tablespoon barley malt syrup
    1 1/2 cups lukewarm water

    For the water bath:

    2 quarts water
    2 tablespoons barley malt syrup
    1 tablespoon granulated sugar

    For the filling & topping:

    8 ounces (227 grams) cream cheese, at room temperature
    1 egg white
    Desired toppings

    Directions

    Make the dough:

    Combine all the dough ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook. Knead on medium-low speed for about 10 minutes (or knead vigorously by hand for 12 to 15 minutes). The dough will be stiff and hold its shape without spreading. Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl, cover, and let rise until puffy but not necessarily doubled in size, 1 to 1 1/2 hours.

    Transfer the dough to a work surface and divide into 16 pieces. Roll each piece into a smooth, round ball. Place on a lined baking pan or lightly greased baking pan and cover. Let them rest for 30 minutes. They may puff up slightly.

    While the dough rests, form cream cheese into sixteen 1-tablespoon balls. Freeze.

    Prepare the water bath:

    Heat the water, malt powder, and sugar to a gentle boil in a large, wide pan. Preheat the oven to 425°F.

    With your hands, stretch and flatten each piece of dough place a frozen cream cheese ball into the center. Enclose the cream cheese with the dough, pinching to seal and rolling into an even ball.

    Boil the bombs for 30 seconds per side then remove to a baking pan.

    Top and bake:

    Brush with the egg wash, coating with desired toppings, and bake for about 20 minutes, or until golden brown.

    To make ahead:

    Individually wrap each bagel bomb in plastic wrap, then place in an airtight container. Freeze for up to 3 months. For best results, let thaw in the fridge overnight then reheat in a 350°F oven until warmed through.

    Inspired by Milk Bar in NYC

  • How to Make Bagels

    How to make Bagels

    Yield: 8 bagels

    Prep Time: 30 minutes

    Cook: 30 minutes

    If you don’t have instant yeast, you can always substitute with the same amount of active dry yeast. Simply add the active dry yeast to the warm water and let it proof for 5 minutes before proceeding with the recipe.

    If you can’t barley malt syrup (which I find on Amazon or at Whole Foods), use brown sugar.

    Ingredients

    For the dough:

    1 tablespoon instant yeast
    4 cups (17 ounces) bread flour
    2 teaspoons salt
    1 tablespoon barley malt syrup
    1 1/2 cups lukewarm water

    For the water bath:

    2 quarts (64 ounces) water
    2 tablespoons barley malt syrup
    1 tablespoon granulated sugar

    For the topping:

    1 egg white
    Desired toppings, see above

    Directions

    Make the dough:

    Combine all the dough ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook. Knead on medium-low speed for about 10 minutes (or knead vigorously by hand for 12 to 15 minutes). The dough will be stiff and hold its shape without spreading. Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl, cover, and let rise until puffy but not necessarily doubled in size, 1 to 1 1/2 hours.

    Transfer the dough to a work surface and divide into eight pieces. Roll each piece into a smooth, round ball. Place on a silicone mat-lined baking pan or lightly greased baking pan (do NOT use parchment paper) and cover the balls with plastic wrap. Let them rest for 30 minutes. They may puff up slightly.

    Prepare the water bath:

    Meanwhile, prepare the water bath by heating the water, malt powder, and sugar to a gentle boil in a large, wide pan. Preheat the oven to 425°F.

    Use your index finger to poke a hole through the center of each dough ball then twirl the dough around your finger to stretch the hole to a 2-inch diameter. Place each bagel on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Transfer the bagels, 4 at a time, to the simmering water. Increase the heat to bring the water up to a gentle boil if necessary. Cook the bagels for 2 minutes, gently flip them over, and continue cooking for another minute. Use a skimmer to remove the bagels back to the baking sheet and repeat with remaining 4 bagels.

    Top and bake:

    Beat the egg white with 1 tablespoon of water and coat each bagel with the mixture. Sprinkle any desired toppings evenly over the bagels.

    Bake the bagels for 20 to 25 minutes, or until they reach their desired brown color. Remove the bagels from the oven and cool completely on a wire rack.

    Serve or store in an airtight container for up to 3 days. Stored bagels are best served toasted. You can also freeze the bagels in an airtight container for up to 2 months.

  • Ultimate Nutella Cupcakes

    How to make Ultimate Nutella Cupcakes

    Yield: 12 cupcakes

    Prep Time: 30 minutes

    Cook: 20 minutes

    Ingredients

    For the chocolate cupcakes:

    4 ounces (113 grams) bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
    1/3 cup (30 grams) Dutch-process cocoa
    1 teaspoon instant espresso powder
    1/2 cup boiling water
    3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons (113 grams) all-purpose flour
    1/2 cup (100 grams) granulated sugar
    1/4 cup (50 grams) packed light brown sugar
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1/2 teaspoon baking soda
    1/2 cup (114 grams) sour cream, at room temperature
    1/4 cup (50 grams) vegetable oil
    2 large eggs plus one egg yolk, at room temperature
    2 teaspoons white vinegar
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract

    For the filling:

    1/2 cup (150 grams) Nutella

    For the Nutella buttercream:

    2 cups (250 grams) powdered sugar, sifted
    8 ounces (227 grams) unsalted butter, at room temperature
    2/3 cup (200 grams) Nutella
    1/4 teaspoon fine salt
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    Ferrero rocher candies, for topping

    Directions

    Make the cupcakes:

    In a medium heatproof bowl add the chocolate, cocoa powder, and espresso powder. Pour hot water over mixture. Cover and let stand for 5 minutes. Whisk mixture gently until smooth then set aside to cool.

    Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a standard 12-cup muffin tin with foil or paper liners.

    In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, sugars, salt, and baking soda.

    Whisk sour cream, oil, eggs, egg yolk, vinegar, and vanilla into the cooled chocolate mixture until smooth. Stir in the flour mixture until smooth, being careful not to overmix.

    Using a spring-loaded scoop, divide the batter evenly among prepared muffin cups. Bake until cupcakes are set and firm to the touch, about 20 minutes. Let cupcakes cool in pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes before removing from pan to cool completely, about 1 hour. Cupcakes can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 day.

    Fill the cupcakes:

    Use an apple corer or small paring knife to remove the center of each cupcake, being careful not to remove the bottom.

    Place the Nutella in a ziptop bag and snip a hole in one corner. Gently squeeze 2 teaspoons of Nutella into each cupcake.

    Make the frosting:

    In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix together the sugar and butter. Mix on low speed until well blended and then increase the speed to medium and beat for another 3 minutes. Add the Nutella, salt, and vanilla and beat on medium for 1 minute, or until well combined.

    Fit a piping bag with a decorative tip and frost all the cupcakes. Top with a Ferrero Rocher candy, if desired. Serve or store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 day, or in the fridge for up to 3 days.

  • Lemon Blueberry Cupcakes

    How to make Lemon Blueberry Cupcakes

    Yield: about 15 cupcakes

    Prep Time: 30 minutes

    Cook: 20 minutes

    Ingredients

    For the cupcakes:

    1 3/4 cups (222 grams) all-purpose flour
    1 teaspoon baking powder
    1/2 teaspoon baking soda
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1 stick (113 grams) unsalted butter, at room temperature
    1/2 cup (100 grams) granulated sugar
    1/4 cup (50 grams) lightly packed brown sugar
    2 large eggs plus one egg yolk, at room temperature
    1 cup (240 ml) buttermilk
    2 lemons, zested and juiced
    3/4 cup (115 grams) fresh blueberries
    2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

    For the buttercream:

    3/4 cup (115 grams) fresh blueberries
    3 cups (306 grams) powdered sugar, sifted
    2 sticks (227 grams) unsalted butter, at room temperature
    1/4 teaspoon fine salt
    2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
    1 to 2 tablespoons heavy or whipping cream
    Lemon zest, for garnish

    Directions

    Make the cupcakes:

    Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line two standard muffin tins with 15 paper liners.

    In a medium bowl combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

    In a large bowl, use an electric mixer on medium-high speed to beat the butter and sugars until fluffy and very well combined, about 3 minutes. On medium-low speed , add the eggs and yolk, one at a time, until combined. Add the buttermilk, lemon zest, and lemon juice. Add in the flour mixture, stirring just until combined.

    In a small bowl toss the blueberries with the 2 tablespoons of flour. Add into the batter and fold with a spatula until combined. Be careful not to overmix.

    Divide the batter among the prepared muffin tins, filling each 3/4 full. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow the cupcakes to cool in the pan for 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.

    Make the buttercream:

    Using a blender, immersion blender or food processor, puree the blueberries. Pass the pureed blueberries through a fine mesh strainer and into a medium bowl to remove the skins. Set aside.

    In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix together the sugar and butter. Mix on low speed until well blended and then increase the speed to medium and beat for another 3 minutes. Add the salt and vanilla and beat on medium for 1 minute.

    Remove half of the buttercream to the bowl with the blueberry puree and stir until well combined. If the buttercream is too thin, add more powdered sugar to thicken. If desired, add a few drops of purple food coloring to enhance the blueberry color.

    To the plain buttercream, add the cream and beat until well combined.

    Swirled Piping

    In a large piping bag fitted with a decorative tip (such as the Ateco #846), use a spoon to scoop the plain frosting into one section of the bag, using your finger on the outside of the bag to help scrape it off. Repeat with the blueberry frosting. Ensure you’re aligning the frosting so it starts at the same place in the bag. Don’t worry if the colors touch each other.

    Squeeze the bag to slightly blur the colors together for a watercolor type effect. Twist the bag and squeeze out a test pipe to ensure the colors are coming out evenly before piping onto your cupcakes. Garnish frosted cupcakes with lemon zest.

    Serve or store at room temperature for up to 1 day, or in the fridge for up to 3 days. Let come to room temperature before serving.

  • Monkey Bread

    How to make Monkey Bread

    Yield: 8 servings

    Prep Time: 2 hours

    Cook: 30 minutes

    Ingredients

    For the dough:
    1 package quick rise active yeast
    1 1/2 cup milk, warm (120 degrees F)
    1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon sugar
    5 tablespoons butter, melted (no hotter than 120 degrees F)
    1 large egg
    1 teaspoon salt
    4 1/2 cups flour
    For the sugar coating:
    10 tablespoons butter
    2/3 cup brown sugar
    2/3 cup granulated sugar
    2 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
    For the glaze:
    1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
    2 tablespoons butter
    1/2 teaspoon vanilla
    1 1/2 to 2 cups powdered sugar

    Directions

    For the dough:
    Mix together warm milk, yeast, and 1 tablespoons sugar in a bowl of a standing mixer fitted with a dough hook (you can also just do this by hand) and let it dissolve for 5 minutes. Mix in the 1/4 cup sugar, butter, egg, and salt. Start adding in the flour while mixing, adding 1 cup at a time until you’ve added 4 cups (scrape sides of bowl as needed). Mix on low for 5 minutes, adding a couple tablespoons of flour at a time if the dough gets too sticky. Place dough in a large greased bowl and turn the dough over so the top is greased. Cover with a towel and let it rise for an hour.
    Grease a bundt pan and set aside.
    Melt the 10 tablespoons butter in a bowl. In another bowl, mix brown sugar, granulated sugar, and cinnamon.
    Pinch or cut off dough into 1 1/2 inch pieces. Roll into balls (use flour as needed), dip in the melted butter, and roll in the sugar mixture. Place the coated balls of dough into the greased pan. Mix any remaining butter and sugar mixture together and pour over the balls. Cover the pan with plastic wrap and let rise for 30-45 minutes.
    Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Bake for 25-30 minutes until golden. Let cool for 5 minutes and then remove onto a platter.
    For the glaze:
    Heat cream and butter together in the microwave until melted. Beat in vanilla and powdered sugar until desired consistency. Pour over the warm Monkey Bread. Serve.

  • Strawberry Baked Donuts

    How to make Strawberry Baked Donuts

    Yield: 11 to 12 donuts

    Prep Time: 10 minutes

    Cook: 10 minutes

    *Freeze-fried strawberries are available at most grocery stores near the other dried fruits like raisins.

    Ingredients

    For the donuts:

    1 cup (127 grams) all-purpose flour
    1/2 cup (100 grams) granulated sugar
    1/4 teaspoon baking powder
    3/4 teaspoon baking soda
    1/4 teaspoon fine salt
    1 large egg
    7 ounces (198 grams) unsweetened nonfat Greek yogurt
    1 tablespoon canola oil
    1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
    1/2 cup finely chopped fresh strawberries

    For the strawberry glaze:

    1 1/2 cups (188 grams) powdered sugar, sifted
    3/4 teaspoon light corn syrup or golden syrup
    *1/2 cup (6 grams) freeze dried strawberries, finely crushed
    2 tablespoons hot water

    Directions

    Make the donuts:

    Preheat the oven to 400°F. Spray two 6-cup donut pans with nonstick cooking spray.

    In a large bowl whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. In a small bowl whisk together the egg, yogurt, oil, and lemon juice. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and pour the wet ingredients in. Add in the chopped strawberries. Gently fold everything together until just combined. The batter will be thick, do not overmix.

    Scoop the batter into a piping bag or freezer bag and snip a bottom corner with scissors. Squeeze out the batter evenly into each cavity of the prepared donut pan. You may only have enough for 11 donuts.

    Bake for 10 minutes or until golden brown. Let cool for a few minutes and then flip over onto a cooling rack to cool completely.

    Make the glaze:

    Mix all ingredients in a bowl with a whisk until smooth. Immerse each doughnut into the glaze. Place glazed doughnuts on a wire rack above a lined sheet pan to catch any excess glaze. Let set for 15 minutes before serving.

  • S’mores Cookie Cake

    How to make S’mores Cookie Cake

    Yield: One 9" cookie cake

    Prep Time: 1 hour 25 minutes (includes cooling time)

    Cook: 25 minutes

    Ingredients

    1 and 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
    1 cup graham cracker crumbs (about 6-7 full-sheets)
    1/2 teaspoon baking soda
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
    3/4 cup brown sugar
    1/4 cup granulated sugar
    1 large egg
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chunks
    1 and 1/2 cups mini marshmallows
    Optional: 1/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chunks or chips, melted

    Directions

    Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray a 9″ pie plate (or cake pan or springform pan) with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.

    In a large mixing bowl, mix together the flour, graham cracker crumbs, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.

    In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or in a large mixing bowl using a hand-held mixer, cream the butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar together until light and fluffy. Mix in the egg and vanilla, making sure to mix well after each ingredient. Slowly mix in the dry ingredients until just combined, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Add in the chocolate chunks and mix until just combined.  Scoop the cookie dough into the prepared baking dish and smooth it out into one even layer.

    Bake at 350°F for about 25 minutes or until the top is set and lightly browned. Remove from the oven and transfer to a wire rack to cool for at least one hour, but it’s best to let it cool completely.

    Just before serving, top with the mini marshmallows, return to the oven and broil until the marshmallows are lightly golden brown. Remove from the oven, slice, and enjoy.

    Adapted from: All Recipes

  • How to Prevent Cupcake Liners from Sticking
  • S’mores Cookies

    How to make S’mores Cookies

    Yield: about 32 cookies

    Prep Time: 15 minutes

    Cook: 15 minutes

    Ingredients

    1 1/2 cups plus 2 tablespoons (206 grams) all purpose flour
    1 cup (8 full crackers or 120 grams) graham cracker crumbs
    1 teaspoon baking soda
    1 teaspoon salt
    Pinch of cinnamon
    2 sticks (226 grams) unsalted butter, at room temperature
    3/4 cup (149 grams) granulated sugar
    3/4 cup (149 grams) light brown sugar
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    2 large eggs
    1 cup (170 grams) miniature chocolate chips
    1 1/2 cups mini marshmallows
    2 Hershey bars, chopped

    Directions

    Preheat oven to 375°F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.

    In a medium bowl combine the flour, graham cracker crumbs, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.

    In a large bowl, use an electric mixer on medium-high speed to beat the butter, sugar, brown sugar and vanilla extract until creamy, about 2 to 3 minutes. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Slowly beat in the flour mixture until smooth. Stir in the chocolate chips.

    Use a medium cookie scoop to drop 1 1/2 tablespoon-sized balls onto the prepared baking sheet. Bake for 8 minutes, and remove from the oven. Push 3 to 4 marshmallows and a few pieces of hershey bar into each cookies. Return to the oven and bake an additional 3-4 minutes until fully cooked. Cool cookies on a wire rack. Store in an airtight container and room temperature for 3-4 days.

    From Make and Bake via Baked Perfection

  • Ultimate Chocolate Chip Cookies

    How to make Ultimate Chocolate Chip Cookies

    Yield: About 24 large cookies

    Prep Time: 10 minutes

    Cook: 24 hours 25 minutes

    Ingredients

    1 1/2 cups (191 grams) all-purpose flour
    1 1/4 cups (159 grams) bread flour
    1 teaspoon baking soda
    1 teaspoon baking powder
    1 teaspoon fine sea salt
    2 sticks (227 grams) unsalted butter, at room temperature
    1/2 cup (100 grams) granulated sugar
    1 1/4 cups (247 grams) lightly packed brown sugar
    2 teaspoons vanilla
    2 large eggs plus 1 egg yolk, at room temperature
    2 cups (340 grams) semi sweet chocolate chips

    Directions

    Preheat oven to 350ºF. Line baking sheets with nonstick baking mats or parchment paper.

    In a medium bowl combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.

    In the bowl of an electric mixer beat the butter, granulated sugar, and brown sugar until creamy, about 2 minutes. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the vanilla Gradually beat in the flour mixture. Stir in the chocolate chips. Wrap dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 24 hours but no more than 72 hours.

    Let dough sit at room temperature just until it is soft enough to scoop. Divide the dough into 3-tablespoon sized balls and drop onto prepared baking sheets.

    Bake for 12-15 minutes, or until golden brown. Cool for 2 minutes before removing to wire racks to cool completely.

    Recipe by Tessa of Handle the Heat

  • Nutella Brownies

    How to make Nutella Brownies

    Yield: 9 large or 16 small brownies

    Prep Time: 20 minutes

    Cook: 1 hour

    The Nutella flavor is slightly muted with baking. To punch it up, feel free to add a tablespoon of Frangelico to the batter or a cup of toasted chopped hazelnuts if you want a bit of crunch.

    Ingredients

    1 cup (170 grams) semisweet chocolate chips
    1 1/2 sticks (170 grams) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
    4 ounces (113 grams) unsweetened chocolate, chopped
    1 1/4 cups (245 grams) granulated sugar
    1/2 cup (150 grams) Nutella
    3 large eggs plus 1 egg yolk
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    3/4 cup (96 grams) all-purpose flour
    1/4 cup unsweetened (25 grams) cocoa powder
    1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt

    Directions

    Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line an 8×8-inch baking pan with foil and spray with nonstick cooking spray.

    In a large microwave-safe bowl, combine the chocolate chips, butter, and unsweetened chocolate. Heat in the microwave for 1 minute then stir. Continue heating in 30-second bursts, stirring between each burst, until the mixture is melted and smooth but not scorched. Remove from the microwave and let cool slightly. Stir in the Nutella.

    In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to beat the eggs and sugar on medium-high speed until light and thick, about 3 minutes. Beat in the vanilla extract. Stir in the cooled chocolate mixture with a rubber spatula. Add the flour, cocoa, and salt, folding gently until combined.

    Pour the batter into the prepared baking pan. Bake until a tester comes out with moist crumbs still attached, 35 to 40. Do not overbake, you want to err on the side of underbaking. Let cool to room temperature. Serve at room temperature, warmed, or chilled.

  • Chocolate Swiss Roll Cake

    How to make Chocolate Swiss Roll Cake

    Yield: about 8 to 10 servings

    Prep Time: 30 minutes

    Cook: 2 hours

    Ingredients

    For the cake:

    1 cup (6 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips
    3 tablespoons strong coffee (or water)
    6 large eggs, at room temperature, separated
    2/3 cup sugar
    1/4 teaspoon table salt
    2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder, divided

    For the filling:

    1 cup heavy or whipping cream
    2 tablespoons powdered sugar
    1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

    For the ganache:

    4 ounces semisweet chocolate chips
    1/2 cup heavy cream

    Directions

    For the cake:

    Preheat the oven to 350°F. Butter or oil a 10-by-15-inch jellyroll pan or a 16-3/4 by 12-inch sheet pan. Line the bottom lengthwise with a piece of waxed or parchment paper.

    Combine the chocolate and coffee in a heat-safe bowl and microwave for 45 seconds. Stir, and continue to heat in 20-second bursts, until the chocolate is almost melted. Continue to stir until melted completely. Let cool.

    In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the egg yolks until pale and creamy. Gradually add the sugar and continue to beat until yolks are pale and ribbony. Gently stir the cooled chocolate into the yolk mixture.

    In a clean bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat egg whites with salt until they hold stiff peaks. Stir a quarter of egg white mixture into the chocolate-yolk mixture to lighten it. Gently fold the remaining whites into the cake batter in three additions. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and smooth top. Bake in preheated oven for 15 minutes for a jelly roll pan and 12 minutes for a half sheet pan, or until cake layer feels dry (but very soft) to the touch and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. It will still seem a little underbaked.

    Transfer to a cooling rack and cover the top with a lightly damp towel for 10 minutes.Remove towels and run a knife around the edges of the cake. Sift one tablespoon of cocoa over the top of the cake and cover the cake with a thin tea or flour sack towel that is a little longer than the pan. Place the back of a baking sheet or a large flat tray over the towel and invert the cake onto it. Gently peel back the parchment paper. Sift the remaining tablespoon of cocoa powder over the top of the cake. Roll the cake up with the towel from short end to short end so the towel is inside. Let cool completely, seam side down.

    For the filling:

    Once cool, beat heavy cream with powdered sugar and vanilla until it holds stiff peaks. Get your serving plate ready and place it near your cake roll. Gently unroll the chocolate cake. Spread the whipped cream filling evenly over cake, leaving a 1-inch border at the far edge. Gently use the tea towel once again to reroll cake and place on the serving plate. Wrap the log tightly in plastic to keep its shape and store in the fridge while preparing the ganache.

    For the ganache:

    In glass measuring cup, microwave the chocolate and cream for 45 seconds. Stir and continue to heat in 20-second bursts until melted and smooth. Chill until thickened, about 10 minutes.

    Remove the plastic from the cake and trim both end pieces. Spoon the ganache over the cake and smooth over the sides. Chill for 1 hour, or until set, before slicing and serving.

    The cake can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 days, though the filling will deflate the longer it’s stored.

  • Brown Butter Triple Chocolate Blondies

    How to make Brown Butter Triple Chocolate Blondies

    Yield: 9 large or 16 small blondies

    Prep Time: 15 minutes

    Cook: 1 hour

    Ingredients

    1 stick (4 ounces, 113 grams) unsalted butter
    3/4 cup dark brown sugar
    1 large egg plus 1 egg yolk
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1/4 teaspoon fine salt
    1 cup (4.5 ounces, 128 grams) all-purpose flour
    1/3 cup milk chocolate chips, plus more for sprinkling
    1/3 cup white chocolate chips, plus more for sprinkling
    1/3 cup semisweet chocolate chips, plus more for sprinkling

    Directions

    Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line an 8 by 8-inch pan with aluminum foil.

    In a small saucepan set over medium heat, melt 6 tablespoons of the butter. Swirling the pan occasionally, continue to cook the butter. It should become foamy with audible cracking and popping noises. Once the crackling stops, continue to swirl the pan until the butter develops a nutty aroma and brown bits start to form at the bottom. Once the bits are amber in color, about 2 to 3 minutes after the popping stops, remove from heat and pour into a mixing bowl. Stir in the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter in until melted.

    Combine the browned butter with the sugar and stir until smooth. If still very hot, let cool slightly. Stir in the egg, egg yolk, and vanilla until smooth. Add in the salt and flour and stir until combined. Mix in all the chocolate chips.

    Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Sprinkle with a small handful of the three chocolate chips and press into the batter. Bake for about 25 minutes, or until golden at the edges.

    Let cool on a baking rack before cutting into squares. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 week, or in the freezer for up to 6 months.

  • Quick and Easy Cinnamon Rolls

    How to make Quick and Easy Cinnamon Rolls

    Yield: 12 cinnamon rolls

    Prep Time: 25 minutes

    Cook: 1 hour

    To ensure these cinnamon rolls really are quick and easy, stick with the instant yeast (or sometimes called rapid-rise yeast) called for in the recipe.

    Ingredients

    For the dough:

    1 cup lukewarm milk
    1/3 cup lukewarm water
    1 package (2 1/4 teaspoons) instant yeast
    3 tablespoons granulated sugar
    3 1/2 cups (15.75 ounces) all-purpose flour
    1 teaspoon fine salt

    For the filling:

    3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
    3 tablespoons ground cinnamon
    1/8 teaspoon fine salt
    4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled

    For the icing:

    3 tablespoons heavy cream
    1 cup powdered sugar

    Directions

    Preheat the oven to 350°F.

    For the dough:

    In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, combine all the dough ingredients and stir until combined. Turn the mixer on medium speed and knead for 5 minutes, or until smooth. Remove the dough to a floured work surface, cover, and let rest for 10 minutes.

    For the filling:

    In a small bowl combine the brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt.

    After the dough has rested, use a floured rolling pin to roll it out into about a 9 by 15-inch rectangle. Brush all over with melted butter. Sprinkle evenly with the cinnamon sugar mixture, leaving a 1/2-inch border at the far edge. Roll the dough up, pinching with your fingers to keep it tightly rolled. Press the seam to seal before positioning the log seam side down.

    Use a very sharp knife to cut off the ends then cut the dough into 11 to 12 equal pieces. Place in greased pie pan or 9 by 13-inch baking pan. At this point you could cover and refrigerate the rolls overnight then let them come back to room temperature for 1 hour before baking. Bake for about 20 to 25 minutes, or until lightly golden brown. Let cool on a wire rack for at least 5 minutes.

    For the icing:

    While the rolls cool, whisk together the icing ingredients until smooth. Drizzle all over the warm rolls and serve.

  • Best Ever Focaccia Pizza

    How to make Best Ever Focaccia Pizza

    Yield: 4 servings

    Prep Time: 20 minutes

    Cook: 2 hours 45 minutes

    You can use the same amount of active dry yeast in place of the instant yeast. Simply allow the active dry yeast to proof for five minutes with the water before adding in.

    Ingredients

    For the dough:

    3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons warm (110-115°F) water
    1 teaspoon instant yeast
    1 1/2 teaspoons granulated sugar
    2 1/2 cups (11.3 ounces) all-purpose flour, plus more for kneading
    1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
    1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil, divided

    For the toppings:

    1 (15 ounce) can crushed San Marzano tomatoes
    1 clove garlic, finely minced
    Salt and pepper, to taste
    4 ounces fresh Mozzarella cheese, sliced
    Fresh basil
    Pizza toppings

    Directions

    In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the water, yeast, sugar, and half the flour. Stir to combine. Fit the mixer with the dough hook and on low speed add in the remaining flour, salt, and 1/4 cup olive oil. Once the dough comes together, increase the speed to medium and knead for 5 to 6 minutes, or until smooth and soft. If the dough is really sticky, add in another tablespoon or two of flour.

    Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, at least 1 hour. OR place the dough in a large plastic bag and refrigerate for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 1 month. If frozen, thaw overnight in the fridge or for a few hours at room temperature. Proceed with the recipe.

    Coat a 9 by 13-inch pan with the remaining 1/4 cup olive oil. Put the dough onto the pan and begin pressing it out with your fingertips to fit the size of the pan. Coax and stretch the dough to fit the entire pan, or just about. Spread your fingers to make little holes all the way through the dough.

    Cover the dough with plastic and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1 hour. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 425°F.

    In a medium bowl combine the tomatoes, garlic, and salt and pepper to taste. Brush the focaccia with the olive oil on the pan. Spread 1/2 cup of the tomato sauce over the dough. Reserve the remaining sauce for another use (it freezes pretty well). Top with the cheese and other desired toppings. Sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste.

    Bake until golden brown, 20 to 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool slightly before cutting and serving.

  • Nutella Stuffed Churros

    How to make Nutella Stuffed Churros

    Yield: about 15 churros

    Prep Time: 20 minutes

    Cook: 1 hour

    Ingredients

    For the cinnamon sugar:

    1/2 cup granulated sugar
    1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

    For the churros:

    1 tablespoon granulated sugar
    1 stick (4 ounces) unsalted butter
    1 cup water
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    1 cup (4.5 ounces) flour
    3 large eggs, beaten

    Vegetable oil, for frying
    1/2 cup Nutella, melted until pourable

    Directions

    For the cinnamon sugar:

    Mix the sugar and cinnamon together in a large shallow bowl.

    For the churros:

    In a medium saucepan, combine the sugar, butter, water, and salt over medium high heat and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and stir in the flour. Stir well for 30-45 seconds over low heat, allowing the dough to dry out a little. Remove from heat. Stir eggs in one at a time, making sure to thoroughly incorporate each egg into the dough before adding the next one. Stir vigorously until dough is smooth.

    Remove the dough to a pastry bag fitted with a large open star tip (I used Ateco #827). Pipe the churros out onto a parchment-linked baking sheet, piping about 4-inches long. Use scissors to cut the end for a perfect shape. Place in the fridge while you heat the oil.

    Make ahead: The dough can be covered and refrigerated for up to 3 hours, or frozen for up to 1 week. Thaw for 30 minutes before frying.

    In a large heavy-bottomed pot fitted with a deep-fry thermometer, heat 2-inches of vegetable oil over medium-high.

    When the oil reaches 350°F, use a slotted spoon to add each piece of dough to the oil, frying only a few at a time. Fry for 5-7 minutes, or until golden brown. Test the first churro to make sure the center is cooked through and no longer doughy. Let the fried churros drain on a paper towel-linked plate before toss them in the cinnamon sugar to coat while still hot. Repeat the process with the remaining dough.

    With a skewer, carve a hole through the center of each churro. Place the Nutella in a piping bag fitted with a small, narrow tip. Pipe the nutella into the churros starting from the center until it comes out the end, then flip the churro around and repeat for the other end so it is completely filled.

    Adapted from this recipe

  • Cheesy Garlic Herb Crack Bread

    How to make Cheesy Garlic Herb Crack Bread

    Yield: 8 servings

    Prep Time: 10 minutes

    Cook: 30 minutes

    Ingredients

    1 crusty sourdough or artisan loaf
    4 ounces (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted
    2 garlic cloves, minced
    1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
    1 tablespoon fresh parsley, chopped
    2 teaspoons fresh rosemary, minced
    2 teaspoons fresh thyme, minced
    3/4 cup shredded Mozzarella cheese

    Directions

    Preheat the oven to 350°F.

    Combine the melted butter, garlic, salt, parsley, rosemary, and thyme in a small bowl.

    With a serrated bread knife, cut the bread on a diagonal into 1-inch diamonds, being careful not to slice all the way through. Use your fingers to pry open each crack and drizzle with 1 teaspoon of butter and a pinch of the shredded cheese. Don’t worry if you make a bit of a mess.

    Wrap the entire loaf in foil. To make ahead, place the foil wrapped bread in the fridge overnight or in the freezer for a month, thawing before baking. Place on a rimmed baking sheet, and bake for 15 minutes, or until the cheese has mostly melted. Carefully remove the foil and continue to bake for another 5 minutes, or until crusty. Serve immediately.

    Adapted from Recipe Tin Eats

  • Dulce de Leche Banana Cupcakes with Chocolate Frosting

    How to make Dulce de Leche Banana Cupcakes with Chocolate Frosting

    Yield: 12 cupcakes

    Prep Time: 20 min

    Cook: 1 hour

    Ingredients

    For the banana cupcakes:
    1 cup (128 grams or 4.5 ounces) all-purpose flour
    1/2 teaspoon baking powder
    1/2 teaspoon baking soda
    1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    1/4 teaspoon fine salt
    1 stick (4 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature
    1/3 cup granulated sugar
    1/4 cup light brown sugar
    1/4 cup sour cream
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    2 large eggs, at room temperature
    2 large overripe bananas, mashed
    About 1/4 cup prepared dulce de leche

    For the chocolate cream cheese frosting:
    8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
    4 tablespoons (2 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature
    3 cups powdered sugar
    1/2 cup good-quality cocoa powder

    Directions

    For the cupcakes:
    Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a standard muffin tin with paper cupcake liners.

    In a medium bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt.

    In the bowl of a stand mixer beat the butter, granulated sugar, and brown sugar on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the sour cream and vanilla and beat until combined. On medium speed add the eggs, one at a time, and beat until combined. Add the mashed bananas and beat until combined. On low speed gradually add the flour mixture and beat just until combined. Do not overmix.

    Use a spring loaded scoop to fill each cupcake liner three-quarters full. Bake until golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 18 to 20 minutes. Remove to a wire rack and let cool completely.

    Use a small knife or apple corer to cut a small hole in the middle of each cupcake. Place the dulce de leche in a zip top bag and snip one small corner. Squeeze out about 1 1/2 teaspoons of dulce de leche into each cupcake.

    For the frosting:
    In the bowl of an electric mixer beat the cream cheese and butter on medium-high until smooth and creamy. Sift the powdered sugar and cocoa powder into a large bowl. On low speed gradually add the sugar and cocoa, beating until incorporated. Increase the speed to high and blend until smooth and creamy.

    Place the frosting into a piping bag fitted with a decorative tip. Pipe frosting onto the cupcakes, directly over the filling. Serve or store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days. Let come to room temperature before serving.

  • Dutch Crunch Bread Rolls

    How to make Dutch Crunch Bread Rolls

    Yield: 6 rolls

    Prep Time: 15 minutes

    Cook: 2 hours 30 minutes

    *Rice flour is a must for the topping in this recipe. It can be found in most grocery stores with other gluten-free flours and products.

    You can also substitute active dry yeast for the instant yeast at a 1:1 ratio in this recipe. It must be proofed by combining it with the warm liquid ingredients in the dough for 5 minutes before proceeding.

    Ingredients

    For the rolls:

    1 package (2 1/4 teaspoons) instant yeast
    1/4 cup lukewarm water
    1 cup lukewarm milk
    1 tablespoon granulated sugar
    2 teaspoons vegetable oil
    3 cups (13.5 ounces) all-purpose flour
    1 1/2 teaspoons fine salt

    For the topping:

    1 package (2 1/4 teaspoons) instant yeast
    3/4 cup lukewarm water
    1 tablespoon granulated sugar
    1 tablespoon vegetable oil
    1/4 teaspoon fine salt
    1 cup (5 ounces) rice flour*

    Directions

    For the rolls:

    In the bowl of an electric mixer combine yeast, water, milk, sugar, and oil. Gradually add in the flour and stir until moistened. Add in the salt. Fit the mixer with the dough hook attachment and mix on medium speed until the dough comes together in a smooth elastic ball, about 5 minutes. If the dough is unbearably sticky, add in more flour 1 tablespoon at a time. The dough can also be kneaded by hand.

    Transfer the dough to a lightly greased bowl and cover. Let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1 hour.

    Turn the dough out onto a floured work surface and divide into six equal portions. Shape each portion into a tight ball and place on a parchment lined baking sheet. Cover and let rise while you prepare the topping.

    Make ahead: At this point the dough can be made ahead of time by covering tightly and refrigerating for up to 24 hours. Remove and let come to room temperature. If two fingers pressed into the dough leave indentations it’s ready.

    For the topping:

    In a large bowl combine all the ingredients and let rest, covered, for 15 minutes, or until frothy.

    Make ahead: Store the topping in a covered but ventilated container in the fridge for up to a week. Let come to room temperature before using.

    Spread a generous layer of the topping all over the rolls, maintaining a thick coating. You should use almost all of the topping. Let rise uncovered for another 20 minutes.

    Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 400°F.

    Bake the rolls for 25 minutes, or until golden brown.

  • Peanut Butter Cup Cheesecake

    How to make Peanut Butter Cup Cheesecake

    Yield: 16 to 20 servings

    Prep Time: 25 minutes

    Cook: 1 hour

    Ingredients

    For the crust:

    30 (1-15.35 ounce package) Oreo cookies
    6 tablespoons butter, melted

    For the cheesecake filling:

    32 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
    5 large eggs
    1 1/2 cups lightly packed light brown sugar
    1 cup creamy peanut butter
    1/2 cup heavy cream
    1 teaspoon vanilla
    8 ounces Reese’s minis

    For the topping:

    1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
    1/2 cup heavy cream
    8 ounces Reese’s minis

    Directions

    For the crust:

    Preheat the oven to 325°F. In the bowl of a food processor, process the cookies until they are finely ground crumbs. Add the butter and pulse until moistened. Press into the bottom and halfway up the sides of a 9-inch springform pan. Bake for 10 minutes. Place on a wire rack to cool.

    For the filling:

    In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese until smooth. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating until smooth. Add in the sugar, peanut butter, cream, and vanilla and beat until combined. Be careful not to overbeat. Stir in the Reese’s.

    Pour the batter into the cooled crust. Bake for about 1 hour, or until set and the top looks slightly dry. If the middle is slightly wobbly, that’s fine. Cool the cheesecake completely on a wire rack. Refrigerate until completely chilled, at least 4 hours. Release the cheesecake from the pan onto a cake stand or serving plate.

    For the topping:

    Place the chocolate chips in a medium heatproof bowl. In a small saucepan heat the cream just until simmering. Pour over the chocolate chips. Let sit for 3 minutes before stirring until the mixture is melted and smooth. Pour over the cheesecake, allowing to drip down the sides. Sprinkle the Reese’s over the cheesecake. Serve or cover and store in the fridge for up to 2 days.

    Recipe adapted from The Foodie & The Family and Taste & Tell

  • Brownie Bottom Cookie Dough Cheesecake Bars

    How to make Brownie Bottom Cookie Dough Cheesecake Bars

    Yield: 12 bars

    Ingredients

    For the brownies:

    1 stick unsalted butter, melted
    1 cup granulated sugar
    1 cup unsweetened natural cocoa powder
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    1/2 teaspoon vanilla
    2 large eggs
    1/2 cup all-purpose flour

    For the cookie dough:

    4 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
    1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
    1/4 cup granulated sugar
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    1 teaspoon vanilla
    2 tablespoons milk
    3/4 cup all purpose flour
    1/2 cup miniature semisweet chocolate chips

    For the cheesecake filling:

    2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, at room temperature
    1/2 cup granulated sugar
    2 large eggs
    1 tablespoons all-purpose flour
    1/4 teaspoon salt

    Directions

    For the brownies:

    Preheat the oven to 325°F. Line an 8×8-inch pan with foil, leaving an overhang.

    In a large bowl combine the butter, sugar, cocoa powder, and salt. Stir until well combined, mixture will be thick. Let cool if the butter is still hot. Stir in the vanilla and then the eggs, one at a time, stirring very well after each addition. Stir until the batter is very well blended. Add the flour and stir again until very well blended. Spread into prepared pan.

    Bake for 15 minutes, or until just starting to set but not fully cooked. Let cool to room temperature then place in the fridge to chill until ready to use. Maintain 325°F oven temperature if baking cheesecake layer immediately.

    For the cookie dough:

    In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to beat the butter, brown sugar, granulated sugar, salt, vanilla, and milk until smooth, about 2 minutes. On low speed gradually add the flour and beat until combined. Mix in the chocolate chips. Set aside.

    For the cheesecake:

    In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to beat the cream cheese and sugar until well combined and smooth. Beat in the eggs, flour, and salt just until incorporated. Pour the cheesecake batter over the brownie. Scoop out balls of cookie dough and flatten with your hands before placing over the cheesecake batter to cover all the batter.

    Bake at 325°F for about 50 minutes, or until the cheesecake is set and the cookie dough is barely golden but dry. Cool to room temperature before refrigerating for at least 2 hours to chill. Cut into 12 bars before serving. Bars can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.

    Recipe by Tessa of Handle the Heat

  • Ultimate Dinner Rolls

    How to make Ultimate Dinner Rolls

    Yield: 15 rolls

    Ingredients

    1/4 cup lukewarm water
    1 cup warm milk (100 – 110°F)
    2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and divided
    2 whole eggs, lightly beaten
    2 tablespoons granulated sugar
    1 1/2 teaspoons fine salt
    2 1/4 teaspoons (1 packet) instant yeast
    4 1/2 cups (20 ounces) bread flour

    Directions

    Combine the water, milk, 1 tablespoon of the butter, eggs, sugar, salt and yeast in the bowl of a stand mixer. Add 2 cups of the flour and stir with a wooden spoon until the dough forms a rough, shaggy mass. Attach the dough hook to the mixer, turn to medium-low speed, and gradually add the remaining flour, kneading until a mass of dough begins to forms. Continue kneading on medium-high speed for 4 to 5 minutes until a soft, smooth ball of dough is formed. The dough should feel elastic and slightly tacky to the touch.

    Lightly spray a large clean bowl with cooking spray and place the dough in the bowl. Cover the bowl lightly with plastic wrap. Let rise for about 45 minutes to 1 hour at room temperature or until the dough is big, puffy, and about doubled in size.

    Spray a 13×9-inch baking pan with cooking spray. Gently deflate the dough. Use a bench scraper, knife, or pizza wheel to divide the dough into 15 equal pieces. Shape each piece into a ball and place in the prepared pan. Brush with the remaining 1 tablespoon of melted butter. Lightly cover the dough with plastic wrap and let the rolls rise for 30 minutes, or until about doubled in size.

    Preheat the oven to 375°F.

    Bake the rolls for 15 to 20 minutes, or until golden brown. Serve warm. Store leftovers in a plastic bag for up to 3 days.

    Recipe by Tessa of Handle the Heat

  • Chocolate Peanut Butter Pudding Pie

    How to make Chocolate Peanut Butter Pudding Pie

    Yield: 8 servings

    Prep Time: 15 minutes

    Cook: 3 hours 37 minutes

    Ingredients

    For the crust:

    14 whole graham crackers
    1 tablespoon light brown sugar
    7 tablespoons (3.5 ounces) unsalted butter, melted

    For the chocolate peanut butter pudding:

    1 tablespoon unflavored gelatin
    1/3 cup boiling water
    2/3 cup sugar
    1/3 cup cocoa
    1/4 cup cornstarch
    1/8 teaspoon salt
    3 cups 1% low-fat milk
    3 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
    1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
    2 teaspoons vanilla extract

    For topping:

    Chopped unsalted dry-roasted peanuts

    Directions

    For the crust:

    Preheat the oven to 350°F.

    In the bowl of a food processor pulse the graham crackers and sugar until finely ground. Add the butter and pulse until moistened. Use the bottom of a measuring cup, glass, or ramekin to press the crust mixture into the bottom and up the sides of a 9-inch pie plate. Bake until fragrant and golden brown, about 12 minutes. Cool completely on a wire rack.

    For the pudding:

    Put the gelatin in a small bowl, add the boiling water and stir until dissolved. Set aside.

    In a medium saucepan whisk the sugar, cocoa, cornstarch and salt. Gradually add the milk, whisking until smooth. Set over medium heat and cook, whisking constantly, until the mixture thickens and comes to a boil, about 10 minutes.

    Remove from the heat. Add in the peanut butter and chocolate and stir until melted. Stir in the vanilla and reserved gelatin mixture. Pour the pudding into the pie crust. Garnish with the peanuts. Chill the pie in the fridge for at least 3 hours, or preferably overnight, until well chilled and set. Slice and serve!

    Adapted from this recipe

  • Salted Caramel Apple Pie Pizza Cookie

    How to make Salted Caramel Apple Pie Pizza Cookie

    Yield: 4 to 6 servings

    Prep Time: 20 minutes

    Cook: 45 minutes

    Ingredients

    For the cookie:

    1 1/2 cups (6.75 ounces or 191 grams) all-purpose flour
    1/2 teaspoon baking powder
    1/4 teaspoon baking soda
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    1 stick (4 ounces) unsalted butter, melted
    1/2 cup dark brown sugar
    1/4 cup granulated sugar
    1 large egg
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1 cup white chocolate chips

    For the caramel apple topping:

    2 large Granny Smith or Jonathan apples, cored, peeled, and diced
    1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
    1/4 cup granulated sugar
    2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
    1/2 teaspoon cornstarch
    1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
    1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
    1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
    2 teaspoons lemon juice
    1/2 teaspoon vanilla
    2 tablespoons heavy cream
    2 tablespoons butter

    For finishing:

    10 caramel square candies, unwrapped
    1/4 cup cream
    1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
    Vanilla ice cream

    Directions

    For the cookie:

    Preheat the oven to 400°F. Spray two 6-inch pie plates or cast iron servers with nonstick cooking spray.

    In a medium bowl whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt to combine.

    In a large bowl stir the butter with the sugars. Let cool slightly if the butter is still hot. Whisk in the egg and vanilla and beat until combined. Add in the flour mixture and stir with a spatula until incorporated. Fold in the white chocolate chips.

    Divide the dough between the prepared pie plates. Bake for about 15 minutes, or until the edges are slightly browned but the inside is still gooey, or until desired doneness.

    For the caramel apple topping:

    While the pizza cookies are baking, make the topping. Toss all the ingredients except the butter in a large bowl. Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the apple mixture and cook, stirring often, until the apples soften, about 8 minutes. Keep warm until ready to use.

    For the caramel topping:

    Place the caramels and cream in a small saucepan set over medium-low heat. Cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture is melted and smooth. Stir in the salt.

    To finish:

    Divide the apple topping among the warm pizza cookies. Top each with a scoop of ice cream and drizzle with the caramel sauce. Serve very warm.

  • Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

    How to make Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

    Yield: about 25 cookies

    Prep Time: 10 minutes

    Cook: 1 hour

    Ingredients

    1 1/2 cups (9 ounces or 255 grams) bread flour
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    1/2 teaspoon baking soda
    1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
    1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
    1/8 teaspoon cloves
    1 stick (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
    3/4 cup granulated sugar
    1/4 cup light brown sugar
    1 egg yolk
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1/3 cup pumpkin puree
    1 cup semisweet chocolate chips

    Directions

    Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line baking sheets with silicone mats or parchment paper.

    In a small bowl whisk together flour, salt, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and cloves.

    In a large bowl combine melted butter, granulated sugar, and brown sugar with a rubber spatula. Add the egg yolk, and vanilla, stirring to combine. Stir in pumpkin puree until smooth. Add the flour mixture in 3 batches, mixing well after each addition, until a soft dough forms. Fold in chocolate chips.

    Cover and chill the dough in the fridge for 30 minutes, or until firm enough to scoop. Using a spring-loaded ice cream scoop or a spoon, roll the dough into 2-tablespoon sized balls and place on the prepared baking sheets. *Flatten slightly with the palm of your hand*. Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until set and edges are lightly browned.

    Let cool completely. Store at room temperature in an airtight container for up to 5 days. Pumpkin flavor will intensify after a day.

  • Sweet Potato Pie Bars

    How to make Sweet Potato Pie Bars

    Yield: 9 large or 16 small bars

    Prep Time: 30 minutes

    Cook: 2 hours

    Feel free to leave the sugar out of the sweet potato filling if you prefer things less sweet.

    Ingredients

    Crust:

    18 full graham crackers
    1/4 cup granulated sugar
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    12 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

    Filling:

    2 cups (16 ounces) sweet potato puree
    1/4 cup granulated sugar
    3 large eggs
    1 tablespoon bourbon (or 1 teaspoon vanilla)
    1 teaspoon fine salt
    1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
    1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
    1/4 teaspoon ground clove
    1 1/2 cups whole milk
    1/2 cup heavy cream

    Topping:

    2 large egg whites
    1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
    3/4 cup granulated sugar
    1/2 cup light corn syrup
    1/4 cup water
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

    Directions

    For the crust:

    Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line an 8×8-inch baking pan with foil.

    Place the graham crackers, sugar, and salt in the bowl of a food processor and pulse until finely ground. Add the melted butter and pulse until the mixture is moistened. Press the mixture into the bottom of the prepared baking pan. Bake for 10 minutes. Remove to a cooling rack and let cool completely. Keep oven at 350°F.

    For the filling:

    In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to beat all the sweet potato filling ingredients until well combined. Pour over the graham cracker crust and bake for 40 minutes, or until set but still slightly wiggly in the middle. Let cool to room temperature.

    For the marshmallow topping:

    In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites and cream of tartar until soft peaks form.

    Meanwhile, in a small saucepan set over medium-high heat, combine the sugar, corn syrup, water, and salt. Bring the mixture to a boil and continue to cook until a candy thermometer registers exactly 240°F. Immediately remove from heat. Turn the mixture on low speed and carefully and gradually drizzle the syrup into the egg whites. Increase speed to medium-high and beat until the mixture is thick and glossy and looks like marshmallow fluff, about 7 minutes longer. Add in the vanilla and beat until combined.

    Spread the marshmallow topping evenly over the sweet potato layer. Use a kitchen torch to gently torch the marshmallow layer until lightly golden. Alternatively, place the pan under the broiler and broil for 1 minute, or until lightly golden. Don’t step away – the broiler can go from toasted to burnt FAST!

    Refrigerate the pan for at least 1 hour before cutting into squares and serving. The squares can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days, though they are best served soon after the marshmallow is made.

  • Apple Cupcakes with Caramel Frosting

    How to make Apple Cupcakes with Caramel Frosting

    Yield: 12 cupcakes

    Prep Time: 30 minutes

    Cook: 1 hour 6 minutes

    Enjoy caramel and apples in the form of a cupcake with these sweet and salty Apple Cupcakes with Caramel Frosting.

    Ingredients

    For the Frosting:

    1/2 cup granulated sugar
    1/4 cup water
    1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
    2 teaspoons vanilla
    12 tablespoons (6 ounces) butter, room temperature
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    1 cup powdered sugar

    For the Cupcakes:

    1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
    1 teaspoon baking powder
    1 teaspoon cinnamon
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
    1/2 cup granulated sugar
    1/2 cup brown sugar
    4 tablespoons (2 ounces) butter, room temperature
    1 egg
    1/2 teaspoon vanilla
    6 tablespoons buttermilk
    1 1/2 cups shredded apple, peeled

    Directions

    For the Frosting:

    Stir sugar and water together in a small pot and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. (You can stir it up until the sugar dissolves but then DO NOT STIR while it boils or else it will form crystals). Let it boil for 5-6 minutes or until it starts to turn a light caramel brown color. Remove from heat and slowly stream in the cream while stirring. Stir in the vanilla. Let it cool to room temperature (about 30 minutes).

    Meanwhile, make the cupcakes. (This is also when I take the butter out of the fridge for the frosting.)

    Once the caramel is cool, in a standing mixer, use the paddle attachment to beat the butter and salt together for 3 minutes at medium speed until light and fluffy. Add the sugar and mix it in starting with a low speed. Add half of the caramel (reserve the rest for drizzling) and beat for 2 minutes on medium speed until light and fluffy (scrape the sides of the bowl as needed).
    Place frosting in a piping bag fitted with a star tip and pipe onto cooled cupcakes. Drizzle with caramel and serve.

    For the Cupcakes:

    Preheat the oven to 350 degree F and line a muffin tin with 12 cupcake paper liners.

    In a mixing bowl, combine flour, baking powder, cinnamon, salt, and ginger together. Set aside.

    In the bowl of a standing mixer beat butter and sugars together until light and fluffy. Mix in the egg and vanilla. Mix in the flour mixture a little at a time until just combined and then add the buttermilk and mix until combined. Fold in the shredded apple.

    Spoon batter into cupcake liners filling them 3/4 full (about 1/4 cup). Bake for 22-25 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.

    Let cupcakes cool for a few minutes in the tin and then remove onto a rack to cool completely before frosting.

    Frosting recipe: Chowhound

  • Creme Brule Pumpkin Chocolate Cheesecake Bars

    How to make Creme Brule Pumpkin Chocolate Cheesecake Bars

    Yield: 9 large bars or 16 smaller bars

    Prep Time: 25 minutes

    Cook: 4 hours 10 minutes

    Ingredients

    For the crust:

    9 whole graham crackers
    5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
    2 cups semisweet chocolate chips

    For the filling:

    2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, at room temperature
    1 cup granulated sugar
    1 cup pure pumpkin puree
    2 large eggs plus 1 egg yolk
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    2 tablespoons all purpose flour
    1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
    1 teaspoon cinnamon
    1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
    1/8 teaspoon ginger
    1/8 teaspoon cloves

    For the brulee topping:

    1/4 cup granulated sugar

    Directions

    For the crust:

    Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line an 8-inch square baking dish with foil, leaving an overhang.

    In the bowl of a food processor, pulse the graham crackers until finely ground. Add the butter and pulse until moistened. Press into the bottom of the prepared pan. Bake until lightly browned and set, about 8 minutes. Remove from oven and sprinkle with the chocolate chips. Bake for another 2 minutes. Remove from oven and smooth the melted chocolate chips with an offset spatula. Let cool and reduce the oven temperature to 300°F.

    For the filling:

    Place the cream cheese in a clean food processor bowl and pulse until smooth (you can also use an electric mixer). Add the sugar, pumpkin, eggs, egg yolk, vanilla, flour, salt, and spices and pulse until combined and smooth. Do not overmix.

    Pour the mixture into the prepared pan. Bake until the cheesecake is set but still slightly jiggly in the center, about 45 minutes. Do no overbake.

    Place the cheesecake on a cooling rack to cool completely in the pan. Cover and chill until firm, at least 2 hours. Using the foil overhang, transfer the cheesecake to a work surface and use a big sharp knife to cut into squares.

    For the brulee topping:

    On a heat-safe work surface, sprinkle the tops of each square with sugar and torch the tops with a kitchen torch until it turns a deep amber color. Alternatively, use a broiler to brown the sugar. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Note that the chocolate layer does get a bit hard if these bars are very cold, so you may want to let them sit at room temperature for about 20 minutes before serving.

  • Salted Caramel Apple Pie Pizza Cookie

    How to make Salted Caramel Apple Pie Pizza Cookie

    Yield: 4 to 6 servings

    Prep Time: 20 minutes

    Cook: 45 minutes

    Ingredients

    For the cookie:

    1 1/2 cups (6.75 ounces or 191 grams) all-purpose flour
    1/2 teaspoon baking powder
    1/4 teaspoon baking soda
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    1 stick (4 ounces) unsalted butter, melted
    1/2 cup dark brown sugar
    1/4 cup granulated sugar
    1 large egg
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1 cup white chocolate chips

    For the caramel apple topping:

    2 large Granny Smith or Jonathan apples, cored, peeled, and diced
    1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
    1/4 cup granulated sugar
    2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
    1/2 teaspoon cornstarch
    1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
    1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
    1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
    2 teaspoons lemon juice
    1/2 teaspoon vanilla
    2 tablespoons heavy cream
    2 tablespoons butter

    For finishing:

    10 caramel square candies, unwrapped
    1/4 cup cream
    1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
    Vanilla ice cream

    Directions

    For the cookie:

    Preheat the oven to 400°F. Spray two 6-inch pie plates or cast iron servers with nonstick cooking spray.

    In a medium bowl whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt to combine.

    In a large bowl stir the butter with the sugars. Let cool slightly if the butter is still hot. Whisk in the egg and vanilla and beat until combined. Add in the flour mixture and stir with a spatula until incorporated. Fold in the white chocolate chips.

    Divide the dough between the prepared pie plates. Bake for about 15 minutes, or until the edges are slightly browned but the inside is still gooey, or until desired doneness.

    For the caramel apple topping:

    While the pizza cookies are baking, make the topping. Toss all the ingredients except the butter in a large bowl. Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the apple mixture and cook, stirring often, until the apples soften, about 8 minutes. Keep warm until ready to use.

    For the caramel topping:

    Place the caramels and cream in a small saucepan set over medium-low heat. Cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture is melted and smooth. Stir in the salt.

    To finish:

    Divide the apple topping among the warm pizza cookies. Top each with a scoop of ice cream and drizzle with the caramel sauce. Serve very warm.

  • Dutch Apple Pie

    How to make Dutch Apple Pie

    Yield: 8 servings

    Cook: 3 hours

    Ingredients

    Pie dough:

    • 1 1/4 cups (6 1/4 ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 1 tablespoon sugar
    • 7 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
    • 4-5 tablespoons ice water

    Apple filling:

    • 5 large Granny Smith apples (about 2 1/2 pounds)
    • 4 large McIntosh apples (about 2 pounds)
    • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
    • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    • 1/8 teaspoon salt
    • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
    • 1/2 cup heavy cream

    Streusel Topping:

    • 1 1/4 cups (6 1/4 ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour
    • 1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
    • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
    • 1 tablespoon cornmeal
    • pinch of salt
    • 7 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

    Directions

    For the pie dough:

    Process the flour, salt, and sugar in a food processor until combined. Scatter butter pieces over flour mixture; cut butter into flour until mixture resembles coarse crumbs with butter bits no larger than small peas, about ten 1-second pulses. Turn mixture into a medium bowl.

    Sprinkle 4 tablespoons of the ice water over mixture. With a rubber spatula, use a folding motion to mix. Press down on the dough with the broad side of the spatula until the dough sticks together, adding up to 1 tablespoon more ice water if the dough will not come together. Flatten the dough into a 4-inch thick disk. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate at least 1 hour or up to 2 days before rolling.

    Remove the dough from the refrigerator (if refrigerated longer than 1 hour, let stand at room temperature until malleable). Roll the dough on a lightly floured work surface or between 2 sheets of parchment paper or plastic wrap to a 12-inch circle. Transfer the dough to a 9-inch pie plate by rolling the dough around the rolling pin and unrolling it over the pan. Working around the circumference of the pie plate, ease the dough into the pan corners by gently lifting the edge of the dough with one hand while gently pressing it into the bottom of the pan with the other hand. Trim the dough edges to extend about 1/2-inch beyond the rim of the pan. Fold the overhand under itself; flute the edges using your thumb and forefinger or a fork. Refrigerate the dough-lined pie plate until firm, about 40 minutes, then freeze until very cold, about 20 minutes.

    Adjust the oven rack to the lower-middle position and heat the oven to 375 degrees F. Remove the dough lined pie plate from the freezer, press a doubled 12-inch piece of heavy-duty tin foil inside the pie shell, and fold the edges of the foil to shield the fluted edge; distribute 2 cups ceramic or metal pie weights over the foil. Bake, leaving foil and weights in place until the dough looks dry and is light in color, 25-30 minutes. Carefully remove foil and weights by gathering the corners of the foil and pulling up and out. Continue baking until deep golden brown, 12 minutes more. Transfer to a wire rack. Increase oven temperature to 425 degrees F.

    For the apple filling:

    Meanwhile peel, quarter, and core the apples; slice each quarter crosswise into 1/4-inch thick pieces. Toss the apples, sugar, cinnamon, and salt in a large bowl to combine. Heat the butter in a large Dutch oven over high heat until foaming subsides; add the apples and toss to coat. Reduce the heat to medium-high and cook, covered and stirring occasionally, until the Granny Smith apple pieces are tender and the McIntosh apple slices are softened and beginning to break down, about 10 minutes.

    Set a large colander over a large bowl; transfer the cooked apples to the colander. Shake the colander and toss the apples to drain off as much juice as possible. Bring the drained juice and the cream to a boil in the now-empty Dutch oven over high heat; cook, stirring occasionally, until thickened and a wooden spoon leaves a trail in the mixture, about 5 minutes. Transfer the apples to the pre-baked pie shell, pour reduced juice mixture over and smooth with a rubber spatula.

    For the streusel topping:

    Combine the flour, sugars, cornmeal, and salt in a medium bowl; drizzle with the melted butter and toss with a fork until the mixture is evenly moistened and forms many large chunks with pea-size pieces mixed throughout. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper and spread the streusel in an even layer on the paper. Bake until golden brown, about 5 minutes; cool the baking sheet on a wire rack until cool enough to handle, about 5 minutes.

    To finish:

    Sprinkle the streusel evenly over the pie filling. Set the pie plate on the now-empty baking sheet and bake until the streusel topping is a deep golden brown, about 10 minutes. Cool on a wire rack to room temperature and serve.

    From The New Best Recipe

  • Biscoff Stuffed Pumpkin Mini Muffins

    How to make Biscoff Stuffed Pumpkin Mini Muffins

    Yield: 24 mini muffins

    Ingredients

    Muffins:
    1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
    1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
    1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
    1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
    4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
    1/2 cup packed brown sugar
    1 large egg plus 2 egg yolks
    1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
    3/4 cup pumpkin puree
    1/2 cup milk

    Filling:
    1/4 cup Biscoff spread

    Cinnamon sugar coating:
    1/4 cup granulated sugar
    1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
    3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

    Directions

    For the muffins:
    Preheat the oven to 350°F. Spray a mini muffin tin with nonstick baking spray.

    In a large bowl combine the flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and allspice.

    In a medium bowl whisk together the butter, sugar, eggs, vanilla, pumpkin, and milk. Pour the pumpkin mixture into the flour mixture and stir until just combined. Do not overmix.

    For the filling:
    Pour 1 tablespoon of batter into each mini muffin cup. Top with a 1/2 teaspoon of Biscoff. Top with about another 1 teaspoon of batter.

    Bake for 12 to 13 minutes, or until the batter is set. Let cool.

    For the coating:
    Combine the sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl. Dip each doughnut hole into the melted butter then coat in the cinnamon sugar. Serve.

    Adapted from Sally's Baking Addiction

  • How to Make Caramel Sauce

    How to make Caramel Sauce

    Yield: About 1 1/4 cups

    Cook: 15 minutes

    Ingredients

    1 cup granulated sugar
    5 tablespoons unsalted butter
    1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoons heavy cream
    1 teaspoon Fleur de Sel or gray sea salt (optional)

    Directions

    In a medium dry saucepan, cook the sugar over medium heat, swirling the pan occasionally, until the sugar melts and begins to turn a deep golden color, about 5 to 6 minutes. Turn off the heat and whisk in the butter until melted. Whisking constantly, gradually add the cream. Whisk until the mixture is smooth.

    The caramel may seize. If clumps of sugar form, continue heating on low heat until they melt back into a smooth sauce. Remove from heat and pour through a fine strainer into a heatproof container. Stir in the salt if using. Let cool until warm and thick. Use or store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 weeks. Let come to room temperature or warm in the microwave before using.

    Recipe from Cookies & Cream: Hundreds of Ways to Make the Perfect Ice Cream Sandwich

  • Quick and Easy Cinnamon Rolls

    How to make Quick and Easy Cinnamon Rolls

    Yield: 12 cinnamon rolls

    Prep Time: 25 minutes

    Cook: 1 hour

    To ensure these cinnamon rolls really are quick and easy, stick with the instant yeast (or sometimes called rapid-rise yeast) called for in the recipe.

    Ingredients

    For the dough:

    1 cup lukewarm milk
    1/3 cup lukewarm water
    1 package (2 1/4 teaspoons) instant yeast
    3 tablespoons granulated sugar
    3 1/2 cups (15.75 ounces) all-purpose flour
    1 teaspoon fine salt

    For the filling:

    3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
    3 tablespoons ground cinnamon
    1/8 teaspoon fine salt
    4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled

    For the icing:

    3 tablespoons heavy cream
    1 cup powdered sugar

    Directions

    Preheat the oven to 350°F.

    For the dough:

    In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, combine all the dough ingredients and stir until combined. Turn the mixer on medium speed and knead for 5 minutes, or until smooth. Remove the dough to a floured work surface, cover, and let rest for 10 minutes.

    For the filling:

    In a small bowl combine the brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt.

    After the dough has rested, use a floured rolling pin to roll it out into about a 9 by 15-inch rectangle. Brush all over with melted butter. Sprinkle evenly with the cinnamon sugar mixture, leaving a 1/2-inch border at the far edge. Roll the dough up, pinching with your fingers to keep it tightly rolled. Press the seam to seal before positioning the log seam side down.

    Use a very sharp knife to cut off the ends then cut the dough into 11 to 12 equal pieces. Place in greased pie pan or 9 by 13-inch baking pan. At this point you could cover and refrigerate the rolls overnight then let them come back to room temperature for 1 hour before baking. Bake for about 20 to 25 minutes, or until lightly golden brown. Let cool on a wire rack for at least 5 minutes.

    For the icing:

    While the rolls cool, whisk together the icing ingredients until smooth. Drizzle all over the warm rolls and serve.

  • Doughnut Waffles with Maple Glaze

    How to make Doughnut Waffles with Maple Glaze

    Yield: about 20 doughnut waffles

    Prep Time: 10 minutes

    Cook: 30 minutes

    Ingredients

    For the doughnut waffles:

    1/3 cup granulated sugar
    2 teaspoons baking powder
    3/4 teaspoon fine salt
    1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
    1 large egg plus 1 egg yolk
    2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1/2 cup milk (any kind)
    1 1/2 cups (6.75 ounces or 191 grams) all-purpose flour

    For the maple glaze:

    4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
    1 cup powdered sugar
    8 tablespoons pure maple syrup
    1 to 2 tablespoons milk

    Directions

    To make the doughnut waffles:

    In a large bowl, whisk the sugar, baking powder, salt, and nutmeg together. Add the egg and yolk, melted butter, and milk until combined. Stir in the flour until combined. The batter will be thick.

    Preheat your waffle iron. Place a tablespoon of batter in each waffle cavity and cook for about 2 to 3 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove to a wire rack and repeat for the remaining batter.

    To make the glaze:

    In a small bowl whisk together all the glaze ingredients until smooth. Drizzle or dunk the doughnut waffles into the glaze. Let sit until the glaze is set. Doughnut waffles are best served the day they are made.

  • Whipped Cinnamon Pumpkin Butter

    How to make Whipped Cinnamon Pumpkin Butter

    Prep Time: 10 minutes

    Cook: 10 minutes

    If you use fresh pumpkin puree, make sure it’s not too watery. If it has a lot of extra moisture, wrap in cheesecloth and squeeze out the excess water.

    Ingredients

    2 sticks (8 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature
    1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg (optional)
    Pinch salt
    1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons pure pumpkin puree
    1/4 cup honey
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract

    Directions

    In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to beat the butter until light and fluffy. Add the cinnamon and 1 tablespoon of the pumpkin puree. Beat until very well combined. Continue beating, gradually adding the remaining pumpkin puree, until completely incorporated. Add the honey and vanilla and beat until thick and fluffy, about 2 minutes.

    Serve or store in the fridge in an airtight container. Bring to room temperature before using.

  • Pumpkin Bread Rolls with Cinnamon Butter

    How to make Pumpkin Bread Rolls with Cinnamon Butter

    Yield: 15 bread rolls

    Prep Time: 20 minutes

    Cook: 2 hours 40 minutes

    Ingredients

    For the bread:

    1 packet (2 1/4 teaspoons) instant yeast
    1 cup whole milk, scalded and cooled to lukewarm
    1/4 cup granulated sugar
    3 tablespoons (1 1/2 ounces or 43 grams) unsalted butter, melted
    1/2 cup (4 ounces or 113 grams) pumpkin puree
    2 large eggs, divided
    1 teaspoon salt
    3 3/4 cups (16.88 ounces or 479 grams) all-purpose flour

    Sliced pecan pieces, for the “stems”

    For the butter:

    1 stick (4 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature
    1/4 cup powdered sugar
    1/4 cup honey
    1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

    Directions

    For the bread rolls:

    In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the dough hook attachment, stir the yeast, milk, sugar, butter, pumpkin, one egg, and salt until well combined. Gradually add the flour and knead on medium-low speed until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl. Turn off the mixer and let the dough rest for 3 to 5 minutes. Continue to knead the dough on medium-low speed for another 5 minutes, or until the dough is soft and smooth. If it seems too sticky, add more flour, 1 tablespoon at a time.

    Transfer the dough to a large greased bowl. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the dough rise until doubled in size, about 45 minutes to 1 hour.

    Punch the dough down and turn it out onto a lightly floured work surface. Divide the dough into 15 equal pieces and shape into balls. Use the palm of your hand to flatten each ball slightly. With a pairing knife, cut 8 slices around each ball, being careful not to slice all the way into the center, to make the pumpkin shape. Cover and let rise until doubled in size, about 45 minutes to 1 hour.

    Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350°F. Using the wooden end of a small utensil or your finger to poke an indentation in the center of each roll to create a space for the “stem.” In a small bowl beat the remaining egg with 2 teaspoons of water and brush all over the rolls. Bake the rolls for 15 to 20 minutes, or until golden brown. Place a sliced pecan piece into the indentation of each roll.

    For the cinnamon butter:

    In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the butter for 30 seconds, or until pale in color. Add the powdered sugar, honey, and cinnamon and beat until well combined, light, and fluffy, about 1 to 2 minutes. Serve immediately or store, covered, in the fridge for up to 1 week. Bring to room temperature before serving.

    Serve the rolls warm with the cinnamon butter.

    Adapted from my Ultimate Dinner Roll recipe

  • Ultimate Muffins

    How to make Ultimate Muffins

    Yield: 12 muffins

    Prep Time: 10 minutes

    Cook: 30 minutes

    Buttermilk is the best for making ultra moist and flavorful muffins. However, you can also use whole milk.

    Ingredients

    2 cups (9 ounces or 254 grams) all-purpose flour
    1/4 cup granulated sugar
    1/4 cup brown sugar
    1/2 teaspoon fine salt
    1 tablespoon baking powder
    1 cup buttermilk
    4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
    1 large egg
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract (if desired)

    Directions

    Preheat the oven to 450°F. Line a standard muffin tin with paper liners or coat with nonstick cooking spray (or both).

    In a large bowl combine the flour, sugar, salt, and baking powder.

    In a liquid measuring cup beat together the buttermilk, butter, egg, and vanilla. Pour into the dry ingredients and stir JUST until combined, do not overmix. Divide evenly among the muffin tin cups.

    Bake for 5 minutes, then reduce the temperature to 400°F (don’t forget this!!). Continue baking until golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about another 12 minutes.

    Mix-ins

    Add about 1 cup chocolate chips, nuts, dried fruit, candy, etc.

    For fruit muffins:

    1 1/2 cups fruit (such as berries, apples, etc.), finely chopped and well drained

    If using fruit, add in with the dry ingredients to make sure the fruit stays evenly distributed and doesn’t sink to the bottom.

    Banana muffins:

    3/4 cup mashed overripe banana (from about 2 small bananas)

    Add in with the wet ingredients.

    Spreads

    1/2 cup peanut butter, Nutella, Biscoff, etc.

    Add with the wet ingredients.

    Lemon Poppy Seed

    2 tablespoons poppy seeds
    1 large lemon, zested

    Add the poppy seeds with the dry ingredients and the lemon zest with the wet ingredients.

    Cocoa Muffins

    1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted

    Add in the cocoa with the other dry ingredients and increase the melted butter to 6 tablespoons and increase the buttermilk to 1 1/2 cups.

    Cinnamon Sugar Topping

    1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    1/2 cup granulated sugar
    4 tablespoons butter, melted

    Combine the cinnamon and sugar in a small bowl. Dip the cooled muffins in the butter then in the cinnamon sugar mixture.

  • Ultimate Guide to Muffins

    How to make Ultimate Guide to Muffins

    Yield: 12

    Prep Time: 10 minutes

    Cook: 30 minutes

    Ingredients

    2 cups (254 g) all-purpose flour
    ½ cup granulated sugar
    ½ teaspoon fine salt
    1 tablespoon baking powder
    1 cup whole milk
    ¼ cup vegetable oil
    1 large egg

    Directions

    Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line a standard muffin tin with paper liners or coat with nonstick cooking spray (or both).

    In a large bowl combine the flour, sugar, salt, and baking powder. In a liquid measuring cup beat together the milk, oil, and egg. Pour into the dry ingredients and stir JUST until combined, do not overmix. Divide evenly among the muffin tin cups. Bake for 20 minutes, or until golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

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  • Ultimate Gooey Brownies

    How to make Ultimate Gooey Brownies

    Yield: 16 brownies

    Prep Time: 10 minutes

    Cook: 1 hour

    Due to several readers experiencing issues with the brownies not baking or setting properly, I’ve added to the recipe an extra baking step to ensure that bottom layer will set and I’ve also slightly reduced the amount of condensed milk.

    Ingredients

    2 cups semisweet chocolate chips, divided
    1 1/2 sticks (6 ounces) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
    4 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped
    1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
    3 large eggs plus 1 egg yolk
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    3/4 cup all-purpose flour
    1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
    3/4 cup sweetened condensed milk

    Directions

    Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line an 8×8-inch baking pan with foil and spray with nonstick cooking spray.

    In a large microwave-safe bowl, combine 1 cup chocolate chips, butter, and unsweetened chocolate. Heat in the microwave for 1 minute then stir. Continue heating in 30-second bursts, stirring between each burst, until the mixture is melted and smooth but not scorched. Remove from the microwave and let cool slightly.

    In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to beat the eggs and sugar on medium-high speed until light and thick, about 3 minutes. Beat in the vanilla extract. Stir in the cooled chocolate mixture with a rubber spatula. Add the flour and salt, folding gently until well combined. Pour half of the batter into the prepared baking pan. Bake for 10 minutes.

    Sprinkle with the remaining cup of chocolate chips and pour the sweetened condensed milk over the top. Pour the remaining batter over. Return to oven and bake for about 35 minutes, or until a tester comes out with moist crumbs still attached. Do not overbake. Let cool to room temperature then place in the fridge to chill. The brownies are easiest to cut when chilled and can be served chilled, at room temperature, or warmed in the microwave.

  • Ultimate Brownies

    How to make Ultimate Brownies

    Yield: 9 large brownies

    Prep Time: 10 min

    Cook: 1 hour

    Ingredients

    1 cup (170 grams) semisweet chocolate chips
    1 1/2 sticks (170 grams) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
    4 ounces (113 grams) unsweetened chocolate, chopped
    1 1/2 cups (300 grams) granulated sugar
    3 large eggs plus 1 egg yolk
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    3/4 cup (94 grams) all-purpose flour
    1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt

    Directions

    Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line an 8×8-inch baking pan with foil and spray with nonstick cooking spray.

    In a large microwave-safe bowl, combine the chocolate chips, butter, and unsweetened chocolate. Heat in the microwave for 1 minute then stir. Continue heating in 30-second bursts, stirring between each burst, until the mixture is melted and smooth but not scorched. Remove from the microwave and let cool slightly.

    In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to beat the eggs and sugar on medium-high speed until light and thick, about 3 minutes. Beat in the vanilla extract. Stir in the cooled chocolate mixture with a rubber spatula. Add the flour and salt, folding gently until combined.

    Pour the batter into the prepared baking pan. Bake until a tester comes out with moist crumbs still attached, 35 to 40. Do not overbake. Let cool to room temperature. Serve at room temperature or chilled.

    Recipe by Tessa of Handle the Heat

  • Ultimate Guide to Chocolate Chip Cookies Part 4

    How to make Ultimate Guide to Chocolate Chip Cookies Part 4

    Yield: about 22 cookies

    Prep Time: 10 min

    Cook: 30 min

    Ingredients

    1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (5 ounces or 142 grams) all-purpose flour
    1/2 teaspoon baking soda
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1 stick (4 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature
    1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
    1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons packed light brown sugar
    1/2 teaspoon vanilla
    1 large egg
    1 cup semi sweet chocolate chips

    Directions

    Preheat oven to 350°F. Line baking sheets with nonstick baking mats or parchment paper.

    In a medium bowl combine the flour, baking soda, and salt.

    In the bowl of an electric mixer beat the butter, granulated sugar, and brown sugar until creamy, about 2 minutes. Add the egg and vanilla, beating well to combine. Gradually beat in the flour mixture. Stir in the chocolate chips. Scoop 1 1/2 tablespoon-sized balls and place onto prepared baking sheets.

    Bake for 10 minutes, or until golden brown. Cool for 2 minutes before removing to wire racks to cool completely.

  • The Ultimate Guide to Chocolate Chip Cookies Part 3

    How to make The Ultimate Guide to Chocolate Chip Cookies Part 3

    Yield: about 22 cookies

    Ingredients

    1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (5 ounces or 142 grams) all-purpose flour
    1/2 teaspoon baking soda
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1 stick (4 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature
    1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
    1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons packed light brown sugar
    1/2 teaspoon vanilla
    1 large egg
    1 cup semi sweet chocolate chips

    Directions

    Preheat oven to 350°F. Line baking sheets with nonstick baking mats or parchment paper.

    In a medium bowl combine the flour, baking soda, and salt.

    In the bowl of an electric mixer beat the butter, granulated sugar, and brown sugar until creamy, about 2 minutes. Add the egg and vanilla, beating well to combine. Gradually beat in the flour mixture. Stir in the chocolate chips. Scoop 1 1/2 tablespoon-sized balls and place onto prepared baking sheets.

    Bake for 10 minutes, or until golden brown. Cool for 2 minutes before removing to wire racks to cool completely.

  • The Ultimate Chocolate Truffle Guide

    How to make The Ultimate Chocolate Truffle Guide

    Yield: about 24 truffles

    Prep Time: 20 minutes

    Cook: 2 hours

    Ingredients

    8 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
    3 tablespoons unsalted butter, cubed
    1/2 cup heavy cream

    Directions

    Place the chocolate and butter in a medium heat-proof bowl. In a small saucepan over medium-high heat, bring the cream to a boil. Pour the cream over the chocolate and butter. Let stand for 2 to 3 minutes before whisking until melted and smooth. Refrigerate, uncovered, for 1 hour, or until slightly firmed.

    Use a small 2-teaspoon spring-loaded scoop to form mounds of chocolate onto a parchment lined baking sheet.  Refrigerate for 15 minutes. Roll the mounds into balls with the palms of your hands. Return the truffles to the baking sheet and chill for another 30 minutes, or until firm. Dip the balls in tempered chocolate. Let the chocolate set before serving. The truffles can be made ahead of time and stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.

  • The Ultimate Dinner Roll Guide

    How to make The Ultimate Dinner Roll Guide

    Yield: 15 dinner rolls

    Prep Time: 15 minutes

    Cook: 2 hours

    Ingredients

    1/4 cup lukewarm water
    1 cup warm milk (100 – 110°F)
    2 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature, divided
    2 tablespoons granulated sugar
    1 1/2 teaspoons fine salt
    2 1/4 teaspoons (1 packet) instant yeast
    3 1/2 cups (15.43 ounces) unbleached all purpose flour

    Directions

    Combine the water, milk, 1 tablespoon of the butter, sugar, salt and yeast in the bowl of a stand mixer.

    Add 2 cups of flour and stir with a wooden spoon until the dough forms a rough, shaggy mass. Attach the dough hook to the mixer, turn to low speed, and gradually add the remaining flour, kneading until a mass of dough begins to forms. Continue kneading on medium-high speed for 4 to 5 minutes until a soft, smooth ball of dough is formed. The dough should feel elastic and slightly tacky to the touch.

    Lightly spray a large clean bowl with cooking spray and place the dough in the bowl. Cover the bowl lightly with plastic wrap. Let rise for about 45 minutes to 1 hour at room temperature or until the dough is big, puffy, and about doubled in size.

    Spray a 13×9-inch baking pan with cooking spray. Gently deflate the dough. Use a bench scraper, knife, or pizza wheel to divide the dough into 15 equal pieces. Shape each piece into a ball and place in the prepared pan. Melt the remaining 1 tablespoon of butter. Brush the dough with the melted butter. Lightly cover the dough with plastic wrap and let the rolls rise for 30 minutes, or until about doubled in size.

    Preheat the oven to 375°F.

    Bake the rolls for 15 to 20 minutes, or until golden brown. Serve warm. Store leftovers in a plastic bag for up to 3 days.

  • The Ultimate Pie Crust Guide

    How to make The Ultimate Pie Crust Guide

    Yield: Makes enough for one 9-inch single pie

    Prep Time: 15 min

    Cook: 1 hour

    Ingredients

    1 1/4 cups (5.3 ounces) all-purpose flour
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1 teaspoon sugar
    1 stick (4 ounces) cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
    2 to 4 tablespoons ice water

    Directions

    In the bowl of a food processor, pulse the flour, salt, and sugar until combined. Add the butter, and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse meal, with larger chunks of butter remaining. Drizzle 2 tablespoons of ice water over the mixture and pulse until it just comes together without being wet, sticky, or crumbly. Do not over mix. If the dough doesn’t hold together when pinched between your fingers, add another tablespoon of water and pulse.

    Place the dough on a large sheet of plastic wrap. Shape the dough into a disk, wrap well in the plastic, and chill in the fridge until firm, at least 1 hour or up to 3 days. Make ahead and freeze, well wrapped in plastic, for up to 2 months. Defrost in the fridge overnight. The dough is now ready to be rolled out and baked.

  • Ultimate Chocolate Chip Cookies

    How to make Ultimate Chocolate Chip Cookies

    Yield: About 24 large cookies

    Prep Time: 10 minutes

    Cook: 24 hours 25 minutes

    Ingredients

    1 1/2 cups (191 grams) all-purpose flour
    1 1/4 cups (159 grams) bread flour
    1 teaspoon baking soda
    1 teaspoon baking powder
    1 teaspoon fine sea salt
    2 sticks (227 grams) unsalted butter, at room temperature
    1/2 cup (100 grams) granulated sugar
    1 1/4 cups (247 grams) lightly packed brown sugar
    2 teaspoons vanilla
    2 large eggs plus 1 egg yolk, at room temperature
    2 cups (340 grams) semi sweet chocolate chips

    Directions

    Preheat oven to 350ºF. Line baking sheets with nonstick baking mats or parchment paper.

    In a medium bowl combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.

    In the bowl of an electric mixer beat the butter, granulated sugar, and brown sugar until creamy, about 2 minutes. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the vanilla Gradually beat in the flour mixture. Stir in the chocolate chips. Wrap dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 24 hours but no more than 72 hours.

    Let dough sit at room temperature just until it is soft enough to scoop. Divide the dough into 3-tablespoon sized balls and drop onto prepared baking sheets.

    Bake for 12-15 minutes, or until golden brown. Cool for 2 minutes before removing to wire racks to cool completely.

    Recipe by Tessa of Handle the Heat

  • The Ultimate Cupcake Guide

    How to make The Ultimate Cupcake Guide

    Yield: 12 cupcakes

    Prep Time: 10 min

    Cook: 50 min

    Ingredients

    1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (6.35 ounces)
    1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
    1/4 teaspoon fine salt
    1 cup granulated sugar
    1 stick (1/2 cup or 4 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature
    1 large egg
    3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons whole milk

    Directions

    In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the sugar and butter until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the egg and vanilla and beat until combined. Add the dry ingredients and milk alternatively, starting and ending with the flour, beating well after each addition. Continue beating for one minute. Divide the batter between the cupcake cups, filling each about 2/3 full.

    Bake at 350°F for 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Let cool for 10 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.

  • The Ultimate Brownie Guide

    How to make The Ultimate Brownie Guide

    Yield: 9 medium brownies

    Prep Time: 10 min

    Cook: 1 hour

    Ingredients

    2 ounces unsweetened chocolate
    6 tablespoons (3 ounces) unsalted butter
    1 cup granulated sugar
    2 large eggs
    1/2 teaspoon vanilla
    1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
    1/2 cup all-purpose flour (2.25 ounces or 63 grams)

    Directions

    Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line an 8x8-inch pan with foil, leaving an overhang on all 4 sides. Spray with nonstick cooking spray.

    In a large microwave-safe bowl, microwave the chocolate and butter on high in 30 second bursts, stirring between each burst, until the mixture is melted. Let cool slightly. Stir in the sugar. Mix in the eggs and vanilla. Stir in the salt and flour until combined. Pour into the prepared pan.

    Bake for 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with moist crumbs attached. Cool completely before cutting into squares.

    Adapted from Baker’s One Bowl Brownie Recipe

  • The Ultimate Guide to Chocolate Chip Cookies Part 2

    How to make The Ultimate Guide to Chocolate Chip Cookies Part 2

    Yield: About 22 cookies

    Ingredients

    1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (5 ounces or 142 grams) all-purpose flour
    1/2 teaspoon baking soda
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1 stick (4 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature
    1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
    1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons packed brown sugar
    1/2 teaspoon vanilla
    1 large egg
    1 cup semi sweet chocolate chips

    Directions

    Preheat oven to 350°F. Line baking sheets with nonstick baking mats or parchment paper.

    In a medium bowl combine the flour, baking soda, and salt.

    In the bowl of an electric mixer beat the butter, granulated sugar, and brown sugar until creamy, about 2 minutes. Add the egg and vanilla, beating well to combine. Gradually beat in the flour mixture. Stir in the chocolate chips. Scoop 1 1/2 tablespoon-sized balls and place onto prepared baking sheets.

    Bake for 10 minutes, or until golden brown. Cool for 2 minutes before removing to wire racks to cool completely.

  • The Ultimate Guide to Chocolate Chip Cookies

    How to make The Ultimate Guide to Chocolate Chip Cookies

    Yield: About 22 cookies

    Ingredients

    1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (5 ounces or 142 grams) all-purpose flour
    1/2 teaspoon baking soda
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1 stick (4 ounces or 114 grams) unsalted butter, at room temperature
    1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
    1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons packed brown sugar
    1/2 teaspoon vanilla
    1 large egg
    1 cup semi sweet chocolate chips

    Directions

    Preheat oven to 350°F. Line baking sheets with nonstick baking mats or parchment paper.

    In a medium bowl combine the flour, baking soda, and salt.

    In the bowl of an electric mixer beat the butter, granulated sugar, and brown sugar until creamy, about 2 minutes. Add the egg and vanilla, beating well to combine. Gradually beat in the flour mixture. Stir in the chocolate chips. Scoop 1 1/2 tablespoon-sized balls and place onto prepared baking sheets.

    Bake for 9 to 11 minutes, or until golden brown. Cool for 2 minutes before removing to wire racks to cool completely.

  • Pumpkin Cookie Butter Truffles

    How to make Pumpkin Cookie Butter Truffles

    Yield: about 22 truffles

    Prep Time: 30 minutes

    Ingredients

    For the truffles:

    3 ounces (85 grams) cream cheese, at room temperature
    2 tablespoons powdered sugar
    1/3 cup (75 grams) pumpkin puree
    1 3/4 cup (175 grams) Speculoos cookie crumbs (from about 23 cookies)
    1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
    1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
    1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
    1/8 teaspoon ground allspice

    For coating:

    16 ounces (454 grams) chocolate (any kind), finely chopped
    1 tablespoon coconut oil or shortening
    Crushed Speculoos cookies

    Directions

    In the bowl of a food processor, combine all filling ingredients. Pulse until well blended.

    Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Scoop the mixture into balls about 1-inch in diameter. I like to use this cookie scoop.

    Place the cookie balls in the freezer until well chilled, at least 1 hour or up to 1 day.

    When cookie balls are chilled, combine the chopped chocolate and oil in a medium microwave-safe bowl. Microwave in 30 second bursts, stirring between bursts, until just melted and smooth. Do not overheat.

    Drop each cookie ball into melted chocolate, coating evenly. Remove with a fork, gently tapping off excess chocolate. Place back on cookie sheet and decorate as desired. Repeat with the remaining cookie balls.

  • Butterscotch Browned Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

    How to make Butterscotch Browned Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

    Yield: 25 large cookies

    Prep Time: 25 minutes

    Cook: 15 minutes

    Ingredients

    2 sticks (227 grams) unsalted butter
    1 1/2 cups (187 grams) all-purpose flour
    1 cup (127 grams) bread flour
    1 teaspoon baking soda
    1 teaspoon baking powder
    1 teaspoon fine sea salt
    1/4 cup (50 grams) granulated sugar
    1 1/2 cups (300 grams) packed dark brown sugar
    2 large eggs plus 1 egg yolk, at room temperature
    2 teaspoons vanilla
    2 cups (200 grams) chocolate covered butterscotch caramels (see post above)
    1 cup (170 grams) semi sweet chocolate chips

    Directions

    In a small saucepan set over medium heat, melt the butter. Swirling the pan occasionally, continue to cook the butter. It should become foamy with audible cracking and popping noises. Once the crackling stops, continue to swirl the pan until the butter develops a nutty aroma and brown bits start to form at the bottom. Once the bits are amber in color, about 2 to 3 minutes after the popping stops, remove from heat and pour into a mixing bowl. Stir in the granulated sugar and dark brown sugar. Allow to cool for about 20 minutes to room temperature.

    In a medium bowl combine the flours, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.

    With an electric mixer, beat the cooled butter, granulated sugar, and brown sugar until well combined, about 1 to 2 minutes. Add the eggs, yolk, and vanilla, beating until combined. On low speed, gradually beat in the flour mixture. Stir in the chocolate chips and butterscotch caramels. Wrap dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 24 hours but no more than 72 hours.

    Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Line baking sheets with nonstick baking mats or parchment paper.

    Let dough sit at room temperature just until it is soft enough to scoop. Divide the dough into 3-tablespoon sized balls and drop onto prepared baking sheets. At this point you can freeze the dough balls until hard then transfer to an airtight container and store in the freezer for up to 2 months. Let sit at room temperature for 15 minutes before baking as directed.

    Bake for 12-15 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove from oven and let cool for 2 minutes before removing to wire racks to cool completely. Serve or store in an airtight container for 3 days.

  • No Bake Rocky Road Cheesecake

    How to make No Bake Rocky Road Cheesecake

    Yield: Makes one 9 inch cake

    Prep Time: 30 minutes

    Cook: 3 hours

    Ingredients

    Approximately 20 (200 grams) Oreo cookies
    1/4 cup (60 grams) unsalted butter
    2 and 1/2 cups (500 grams) cream cheese, room temperature
    1/4 cup (50 grams) graunlated or caster sugar
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1 and 1/2 cup (360 ml) thickened or heavy cream
    1 cup (150 grams) good quality semi-sweet or dark chocolate
    3/4 cup (105 grams) roasted peanuts
    2 cups (110 grams) mini marshmallows
    1/2 cup (75 grams) semi-sweet or dark chocolate, for decorating

    Directions

    Lightly grease a 9 inch (23 cm) springform baking tin with a little butter and set aside. Add your Oreo cookies (cream and all) to a food processor and blend until they resemble fine crumbs. If you don’t have a food processor, place them in a sandwich bag and bash with a rolling pin. Melt your butter in the microwave and add it to your crushed Oreos and whiz again (or stir well) until the mixture resembles wet sand. Pour your Oreo mixture into your prepared tin and press down gently to form an even layer. Pop in the fridge.

    Add your softened cream cheese,  sugar and vanilla to a large mixing bowl and beat with an electric mixer until smooth and creamy. In a separate bowl, add your cream and beat with an electric mixer until soft peaks form. Finally, melt your dark chocolate in the microwave until it is just melted – give it a good stir. Then add your chocolate to your cream cheese mixture and beat until smooth. Then gently fold through the whipped cream. Add 1 cup (55 grams) of mini marshmallows and 1/2 cup (35 grams) of roasted peanuts and stir through. Pour your cheesecake over the top of your Oreo cookie base, cover loosely with alfoil and refrigerate for at least 3 hours or overnight.

    When you are ready to serve, scatter the remaining 1/2 cup (35 grams) of roasted peanuts and 1 cup (55 grams) of mini marshmallows and lightly press them into the top of the cheesecake. Melt your extra chocolate in the microwave and then use a spoon to drizzle the melted chocolate all over the cheesecake. Cut and serve!

  • Ultimate Nutella Cupcakes

    How to make Ultimate Nutella Cupcakes

    Yield: 12 cupcakes

    Prep Time: 30 minutes

    Cook: 20 minutes

    Ingredients

    For the chocolate cupcakes:

    4 ounces (113 grams) bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
    1/3 cup (30 grams) Dutch-process cocoa
    1 teaspoon instant espresso powder
    1/2 cup boiling water
    3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons (113 grams) all-purpose flour
    1/2 cup (100 grams) granulated sugar
    1/4 cup (50 grams) packed light brown sugar
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1/2 teaspoon baking soda
    1/2 cup (114 grams) sour cream, at room temperature
    1/4 cup (50 grams) vegetable oil
    2 large eggs plus one egg yolk, at room temperature
    2 teaspoons white vinegar
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract

    For the filling:

    1/2 cup (150 grams) Nutella

    For the Nutella buttercream:

    2 cups (250 grams) powdered sugar, sifted
    8 ounces (227 grams) unsalted butter, at room temperature
    2/3 cup (200 grams) Nutella
    1/4 teaspoon fine salt
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    Ferrero rocher candies, for topping

    Directions

    Make the cupcakes:

    In a medium heatproof bowl add the chocolate, cocoa powder, and espresso powder. Pour hot water over mixture. Cover and let stand for 5 minutes. Whisk mixture gently until smooth then set aside to cool.

    Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a standard 12-cup muffin tin with foil or paper liners.

    In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, sugars, salt, and baking soda.

    Whisk sour cream, oil, eggs, egg yolk, vinegar, and vanilla into the cooled chocolate mixture until smooth. Stir in the flour mixture until smooth, being careful not to overmix.

    Using a spring-loaded scoop, divide the batter evenly among prepared muffin cups. Bake until cupcakes are set and firm to the touch, about 20 minutes. Let cupcakes cool in pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes before removing from pan to cool completely, about 1 hour. Cupcakes can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 day.

    Fill the cupcakes:

    Use an apple corer or small paring knife to remove the center of each cupcake, being careful not to remove the bottom.

    Place the Nutella in a ziptop bag and snip a hole in one corner. Gently squeeze 2 teaspoons of Nutella into each cupcake.

    Make the frosting:

    In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix together the sugar and butter. Mix on low speed until well blended and then increase the speed to medium and beat for another 3 minutes. Add the Nutella, salt, and vanilla and beat on medium for 1 minute, or until well combined.

    Fit a piping bag with a decorative tip and frost all the cupcakes. Top with a Ferrero Rocher candy, if desired. Serve or store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 day, or in the fridge for up to 3 days.

  • Homemade Nutella

    How to make Homemade Nutella

    Yield: About 2 cups

    Prep Time: 5 minutes

    Cook: 10 minutes

    Ingredients

    1 cup hazelnuts
    12 ounces milk chocolate, chopped
    2 tablespoons canola oil
    3 tablespoons powdered sugar
    1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
    1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
    3/4 teaspoon salt

    Directions

    Preheat the oven to 350°F.

    Spread the hazelnuts in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Toast the hazelnuts until they’re slightly browned and the skin is slightly blistered, about 10 minutes. Wrap the hazelnuts in a kitchen towel and rub vigorously to remove as much loose skin as possible (some skin may not remove, that’s fine). Let cool completely.

    Place the chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave in 30-second bursts, stirring between each burst, until the chocolate is melted and smooth. Let cool completely.

    In a high-powered blender or in a food processor, grind the hazelnuts until they form a paste. Add the oil, sugar, cocoa powder, vanilla, and salt and continue to process until the mixture is as smooth as possible. Add the melted chocolate and blend until smooth. Press the mixture through a fine strainer to remove any chunks of hazelnuts that might be left behind. Allow the mixture to cool (will be warm from blending or processing). Store the mixture in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 weeks.

    From Cake Simple via Leite's Culinaria

  • Chocolate Nutella Cookie Cups

    How to make Chocolate Nutella Cookie Cups

    Yield: 24 cookie cups

    Prep Time: 40 minutes

    Cook: 13 minutes

    Ingredients

    For the chocolate cookie cups:

    1 and 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
    1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
    1/2 teaspoon baking soda
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
    1/2 cup brown sugar
    1/2 cup granulated sugar
    1 large egg
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract

    For the Nutella frosting:

    1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
    1/4 cup Nutella
    2 cups powdered sugar
    1 tablespoon heavy cream
    1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
    tiny pinch of salt (optional)

    Directions

    To make the chocolate cookie cups:

    Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray a 24-count mini muffin pan with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.

    In a large mixing bowl, mix together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.

    In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or in a large mixing bowl using a hand-held mixer, beat the butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar until light and fluffy. Mix in the egg and vanilla extract, making sure to mix well after each ingredient. Slowly mix in the dry ingredients and mix until just combined, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.

    Evenly distribute the cookie dough between all 24 mini muffin cavities. Bake at 350°F for 11-13 minutes or until done in the center. Remove from the oven and gently press down the center of each cookie cup using the bottom of a measuring teaspoon. Allow the cookie cups to cool in the pan for 5-10 minutes, or until they’ve firmed up a little and can easily be removed from the pan. Remove from the pan to a wire rack to cool completely.

    To make the Nutella frosting:

    In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or in a large mixing bowl using a hand-held mixer, beat the butter until smooth. Add in the Nutella and mix until well combined. Next, add in the powdered sugar, heavy cream, vanilla extract, and salt and mix until fully combined.

    Pipe the Nutella frosting into the cooled cookie cups as desired.

  • Banana Espresso Chocolate Chip Muffins

    How to make Banana Espresso Chocolate Chip Muffins

    Yield: 12 muffins

    Prep Time: 15 minutes

    Cook: 25 minutes

    Ingredients

    1 1/2 cups (354 grams) mashed, very ripe bananas (about 4 medium bananas)
    1/2 cup (100 grams) granulated sugar
    1/4 cup (50 grams) firmly packed light brown sugar
    1 stick (113 grams) unsalted butter, melted
    1/4 cup (57 grams) whole milk
    1 large egg
    1 1/2 cups (190 grams) all-purpose flour
    1 teaspoon instant espresso powder
    1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
    1 teaspoon salt
    1 cup (170 grams) semisweet chocolate chips

    Directions

    Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 12-cup muffin pan with nonstick cooking spray.

    In a medium bowl, stir together the bananas, sugars, butter, milk, and egg.

    In another medium bowl, whisk together the flour, instant espresso powder, baking soda, and salt. Make a well in the middle of the dry ingredients. Pour the wet ingredients into the well and stir until just combined. Fold in the chocolate chips.

    Fill each cup about three-quarters full. Bake in the center of the oven for 20 to 25 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean.

    Move the muffin pan to a cooling rack, and let cool for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, remove the muffins from the pan and let them finish cooling on the cooling rack.

    Muffins can be stored in an airtight container for up to 2 days.

    From Baked by Matt Lewis and Renato Poliafito

  • Mini Sour Cream Chocolate Cakes

    How to make Mini Sour Cream Chocolate Cakes

    Yield: 10 mini cakes

    Prep Time: 1 hour

    Cook: 20 minutes

    Ingredients

    Chocolate Cake

    1 cup and 1 tablespoon (250 grams) unsalted butter, room temperature
    1 cup (200 grams) caster sugar
    3/4 cup (135 grams) brown sugar
    2 teaspoons vanilla extract
    3 large eggs, room temperature
    1/2 cup (120ml) hot water
    1 and 3/4 cup (245 grams) plain flour
    3/4 cup (60 grams) cocoa powder
    1 teaspoon baking powder
    1 teaspoon baking soda
    1 cup (240 ml) sour cream, room temperature

    Chocolate frosting

    1/2 cup (1 stick or 115 grams) unsalted butter, room temperature
    3 cups (375 grams) powdered or icing sugar
    2-3 tablespoons milk
    2/3 cup (100 grams) semi-sweet or dark chocolate, pieces
    Extra chocolate shavings for decorating

    Directions

    Preheat the oven to 360 F (180 C). Prepare a 12-cup mini loose bottom dessert tin with butter (My dessert tin features 2 x 3 inch cups). In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter and sugars with an electric mixer until pale and creamy. Add the vanilla extract. Then add one egg at a time and continue to beat until mixture is combined and creamy. Boil the kettle and pour out 1/2 cup water and set aside.

    In a separate bowl, sift the plain flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and baking soda and lightly whisk. Add the dry ingredients to the wet, along with the hot water and gently fold with a spatula. Add the sour cream and fold until the mixture is combined.

    Carefully spoon the cake mixture into your prepared cake tin – it makes 10 mini cakes. Pop into the oven for 20 minutes or until the cake springs back lightly to the touch. Leave the cakes to cool for about 5 minutes before carefully transferring the cakes to a wire rack to cool completely.

    To make the chocolate frosting, place your softened butter in a large mixing bowl and beat with an electric mixer on medium speed until smooth and creamy. Sift in your powdered or icing sugar, add your milk and beat until combined. Meanwhile melt the chocolate in a microwave, stirring in between 20 second bursts, until just melted.

    Next you will want to add in your melted chocolate to the buttercream mixture, ensuring the chocolate is smooth and melted but is not warm at all. Beat until the chocolate is completely mixed through. Use a small spatula to spread the frosting onto the cakes, then sprinkle over a few chocolate shavings.

     

  • No Bake Mini Peanut Butter Cheesecakes

    How to make No Bake Mini Peanut Butter Cheesecakes

    Yield: 12 mini cheesecakes

    Prep Time: 30 minutes

    I adore my mini cheesecake pan, but if you don’t have one you could use a muffin tin. Just be sure to line it with paper or foil liners, otherwise the graham cracker crust might crumble and the cheesecake might stick when you go to remove them.

    Ingredients

    For the crust:

    1 sleeve (9 cookies) graham crackers
    4 tablespoons (57 grams) unsalted butter, melted

    For the cheesecake:

    8 ounces (227 grams) cream cheese, at room temperature
    1/3 cup (90 grams) creamy peanut butter
    1/2 cup (100 grams) granulated sugar
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    2/3 cup (157 ml) heavy cream
    4 ounces (113 grams) semisweet chocolate, melted and cooled

    For the topping:

    1/2 cup (85 grams) semisweet chocolate chips
    1/4 cup (58 grams) heavy cream
    Mini peanut butter cups

    Directions

    Make the crust:

    Thoroughly grease a mini cheesecake pan. Place the graham crackers in the bowl of a food processor and pulse until finely ground. Add in the melted butter and pulse until moistened. Divide the mixture among the cavities of the cheesecake pan, about 1 heaping tablespoon in each. Firmly press into the bottom of each cavity (a shot glass or other small object makes easy work of this). Set aside.

    Make the cheesecake:

    In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese, peanut butter, and sugar on medium-high speed until creamy and well combined. Add in the vanilla and cream and continue beating until well combined and thickened. Pour in the melted chocolate and beat until combined. Divide the mixture among each cavity and cover with plastic wrap.

    Chill until firm, at least 4 hours or overnight.

    Make the topping:

    Place the chocolate chips in a medium heatproof bowl. In a small saucepan heat the cream just until simmering. Pour over the chocolate chips. Let sit for 3 minutes before stirring until the mixture is melted and smooth. Pour over each cheesecake, allowing to barely drip down the sides. Top each cheesecake with Reese’s. Serve or cover and store in the fridge for up to 2 days.

  • Death by Chocolate Ice Cream

    How to make Death by Chocolate Ice Cream

    Yield: about 1 1/2 quarts

    Prep Time: 30 minutes

    Cook: 15 minutes

    Ingredients

    For the ice cream:

    1 1/2 cups whole milk
    1 1/2 cups heavy cream
    3/4 cup (150 grams) granulated sugar, divided
    1/4 cup (25 grams) unsweetened cocoa powder, preferably Dutch-process, sifted
    1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
    1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
    8 ounces (227 grams) bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, melted
    4 large egg yolks

    For the fudge swirl:

    1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons heavy cream
    1 tablespoon unsalted butter
    1/4 cup (50 grams) granulated sugar
    2 tablespoons packed light brown sugar
    1/2 cup (85 grams) semisweet chocolate chips
    1/8 teaspoon fine salt
    1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

    Directions

    Make the ice cream:

    Prepare an ice bath by filling a large bowl with ice cubes and 1 to 2 cups of water. Place a medium bowl fitted with a fine strainer inside the ice bath.

    In a medium saucepan, combine the milk, cream, 1/2 cup sugar, cocoa powder, salt, and vanilla. Set over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the mixture is warm and begins to steam, about 5 minutes. Stir in the melted chocolate.

    Whisk together the egg yolks and remaining 1/4 cup of sugar. Carefully whisk half of the warm milk mixture into the egg yolks, one ladleful at a time, until the egg mixture is warmed. Whisk the egg-milk mixture back into the saucepan. Cook the mixture over medium heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until the mixture is thick enough to coat the back of the spoon and registers around 175°F on an instant-read thermometer, about 5 to 7 minutes. Be careful not to boil the mixture.

    Immediately strain the mixture through the fine strainer into the prepared ice bath. Cool the custard in the ice bath until it reaches room temperature, stirring often. Press plastic wrap against the surface of the custard and refrigerate until chilled, about 4 hours or up to 1 day.

    Make the fudge swirl:

    Heat the cream, butter, and sugars in a small saucepan over low heat. Bring the mixture to a boil and cook until the sugar dissolves, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the chocolate chips. Let stand for 3 minutes before stirring completely smooth. Stir in the salt and vanilla. Let the mixture cool to room temperature before using. Fudge swirl can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 days. Bring to room temperature before using.

    Finish the ice cream:

    Pour the mixture into an ice cream maker and freeze according to the manufacturer’s directions. Transfer the ice cream to an airtight container in batches, spooning the fudge swirl in between layers of ice cream in a swirled pattern. Press plastic wrap against the surface of the ice cream and freeze until it is firm, about 3 hours, before serving.

  • Nutella Chocolate Covered Pretzel Milkshake

    How to make Nutella Chocolate Covered Pretzel Milkshake

    Yield: 1 to 2 servings

    Prep Time: 15 minutes

    The sweetened condensed milk adds unbelievable richness, but feel free to use heavy cream instead. My favorite chocolate covered pretzels are the ones from Trader Joe’s!

    Ingredients

    For the milkshake:

    1/4 cup Nutella
    1 1/2 cups ice cream (chocolate, vanilla, or hazelnut)
    1/2 cup whole milk
    2 tablespoons sweetened condensed milk (or heavy cream)
    1/2 cup chocolate covered pretzels

    For topping:

    Whipped cream
    Nutella
    Crushed chocolate covered pretzels

    Directions

    Add all of the milkshake ingredients into the bowl of a blender and blend until just combined.

    Pour into a glass. Top with whipped cream. Drizzle with Nutella and sprinkle with crushed chocolate covered pretzels. Serve with a wide straw or spoon.

  • Rocky Road Brownies

    How to make Rocky Road Brownies

    Yield: 20

    Prep Time: 15 minutes

    Cook: 35 minutes

    Ingredients

    For the Brownie:

    2 cups sugar
    2/3 cup cocoa powder
    1 cup butter, melted
    4 large eggs
    2 teaspoons vanilla
    1 1/2 cup flour
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    2/3 cup chocolate chips

    For the Topping:

    1 (10 ounce, about 5 cups) bag mini marshmallows
    3/4 cup almonds, roughly chopped
    1/2 cup chocolate chips

    For the Frosting:

    1/4 cup butter. melted
    3/4 cup powdered sugar
    3 tablespoons cocoa powder
    2 tablespoons whipping cream

    Directions

    For the Brownie:

    Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9×13 pan.

    In a large mixing bowl, mix sugar and cocoa powder together. Mix in the melted butter, eggs, and vanilla until smooth. Add the flour and salt and mix until just combined. Folding the chocolate chips and then spread into the greased pan. Bake for 32 minutes.

    For the Topping:

    Top brownies with marshmallows, almonds, and chocolate chips. Bake for 3-4 more minutes until marshmallows start to expand.

    For the Frosting:

    Mix frosting ingredients together until smooth. Drizzle over the warm brownies. Let brownies cool completely before cutting.

  • Neapolitan Ice Cream Sandwiches

    How to make Neapolitan Ice Cream Sandwiches

    Yield: About 12 sandwiches, depending on their size

    Prep Time: 30 minutes

    Cook: 20 minutes

    Ingredients

    For the Strawberry Ice Cream:

    1 pound (453 grams) fresh strawberries, hulled and chopped
    4 ounces (113 grams) cream cheese, at room temperature
    1/2 cup (113 grams) sour cream
    1/2 cup (113 grams) whole milk
    1/2 cup (113 grams) heavy cream
    2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
    2 tablespoons corn syrup
    3/4 cup (149 grams) granulated sugar
    1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
    1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

    For the cookies:

    1 1/2 sticks (170 grams) unsalted butter, at room temperature
    1 1/2 cups (297 grams) granulated sugar
    2 large eggs
    2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
    1 tablespoon milk, plus 2 teaspoons, divided
    2 1/2 cups (319 grams) all-purpose flour
    2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
    1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
    1/4 cup (25 grams) unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder

    Directions

    Make the strawberry ice cream:

    In the bowl of a blender or food processor, puree all the ice cream ingredients until smooth. Transfer the mixture to a medium bowl and press plastic wrap against the surface. Place in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour, or until chilled. Mixture can be stored for up to 1 day.

    Pour the chilled mixture into an ice cream maker and freeze according to the manufacturer’s directions. Remove to an airtight container and freeze for at least 3 hours, or until firmed.

    Make the cookies:

    In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to beat the butter and sugar on medium-high speed until smooth and well combined, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the eggs, one at a time, until well combined. Add the vanilla extract and 1 tablespoon milk. Add the flour, baking powder, and salt.

    Remove half the dough and place in a separate bowl. Each half of dough should weigh about 430 grams. Add the cocoa powder and remaining 2 teaspoons milk to half the dough and mix until combined.

    Place one half of the soft dough in between two large pieces of parchment paper or plastic wrap on a work surface. Roll the dough out to a 1/4-inch thickness, using the parchment paper to prevent sticking. Repeat with the remaining half. Place each sheet of dough in the freezer until firm, 30 minutes to 1 hour.

    Line large baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. Use a cookie cutter to cut out circles from the dough and place on prepared baking sheets, spreading at least a 1/2 inch apart.

    Chill the baking sheets in the refrigerator for 30 minutes, or until the dough circles are firm.

    Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350°F.

    Remove the baking sheets from the refrigerator and prick the cookies all over with the probe of an instant-read thermometer or the blunt end of a skewer or chopstick. Bake the vanilla cookies first, for 9 to 10 minutes, or until the cookies are set. Then bake the chocolate cookies. Let cool on baking sheets for 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely. Cookies can be stored in airtight containers in the freezer for up to 1 month.

    Assemble the sandwiches:

    Remove the ice cream from the freezer and assemble ice cream sandwiches. Freeze the sandwiches until firm, at least 1 hour, before serving.

    Sandwiches can be individually wrapped in plastic and stored in the freezer for up to 1 week. Let sit at room temperature for 5 to 10 minutes before serving.

  • Peanut Butter Cheesecake Stuffed Chocolate Cupcakes

    How to make Peanut Butter Cheesecake Stuffed Chocolate Cupcakes

    Yield: 16 cupcakes

    Prep Time: 25 minutes

    Cook: 25 minutes

    Ingredients

    For the cupcakes:

    1/2 cup (85 grams) semisweet chocolate chips
    1/2 cup (123 grams) peanut butter
    1 1/2 cups (187 grams) all-purpose flour
    1 teaspoon baking soda
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1/2 cup (100 grams) granulated sugar
    1/3 cup (66 grams) vegetable oil
    1 large egg
    1 teaspoon vanilla
    1 cup water

    For the cheesecake filling:

    4 ounces (113 grams) cream cheese, at room temperature
    1/2 cup (123 grams) peanut butter, plus more for topping
    1/4 cup (50 grams) granulated sugar
    1 large egg
    1/8 teaspoon salt
    1/2 cup (85 grams) semisweet chocolate chips
    1/2 cup (85 grams) peanut butter chips

    Directions

    Make the cupcakes:

    Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line two standard muffin tins with 16 paper liners.

    Place the chocolate chips in a small microwave-safe bowl and microwave on high for 45 seconds. Stir until smooth. If not completely melted, return to the microwave for 10 second bursts until smooth. Stir in the peanut butter. Let cool.

    In a medium bowl combine the flour, baking soda, and salt. In a large bowl vigorously whisk the sugar, oil, egg, and vanilla until well combined. Beat in the melted chocolate chips and peanut butter. Gradually add the flour mixture alternatively with the water. The batter will be thin. Set aside.

    Make the filling:

    In the bowl of an electric mixer beat the cream cheese, peanut butter, sugar, egg, and salt until creamy. Stir in the chocolate chips and peanut butter chips.

    Fill each muffin cup half full with the batter. Spoon a tablespoon of the cream cheese filling over the batter. Spoon the remaining batter over the cream cheese filling. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean.

    Let cool completely. Melt additional peanut butter for spreading over the tops of each cupcake, if desired. Serve or store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 days.

  • Ding Dong Cupcakes

    How to make Ding Dong Cupcakes

    Yield: 12 cupcakes

    Prep Time: 30 minutes

    Cook: 1 hour

    Ingredients

    Chocolate cupcakes

    3/4 cup (105 grams) plain flour
    1/2 cup (40 grams) cocoa powder
    1/2 teaspoon baking soda
    1/2 teaspoon baking powder
    1/2 cup (100 grams) granulated or caster sugar
    1/4 cup (45 grams) brown sugar
    1/2 cup (115 grams or 1 stick) unsalted butter
    2 large eggs
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1/2 cup (120 ml) buttermilk

    Marshmallow filling

    2 egg whites, room temperature
    1/2 cup (100 grams) granulated or caster sugar
    1/8 teaspoon cream of tartar
    1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

    Chocolate ganache

    2/3 cup (100 grams) dark chocolate
    1/2 cup (120 ml) thickened or heavy cream

    Vanilla buttercream

    1 tablespoon (15 grams) unsalted butter, softened
    3/4 cup (90 grams) icing or powdered sugar
    2 teaspoons milk
    1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

    Directions

    Chocolate cupcakes

    Preheat the oven to 360 F (180 C). Line a 12 hole muffin tin with patty cases. In a large mixing bowl, sift the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder and then add the sugars – give it a stir. Place the butter in a microwave safe mixing bowl and pop into the microwave for 10 seconds or so at a time, until it is just melted. Give it a stir with a fork to eliminate any lumps. Then add the eggs and vanilla to the butter, along with the buttermilk and whisk together until smooth. Then add the wet butter mixture into the dry mixture and fold until just combined. Spoon the mixture into the prepared patty cases and pop into the oven. Bake for 18-20 minutes before setting the cakes onto a wire rack to cool completely.

    Marshmallow filling

    To make the marshmallow filling, add a few inches of water to a medium saucepan and place on a medium heat. In a small heatproof bowl, add your eggs whites, caster sugar and cream of tartar. Whisk together. Then pop the bowl over the saucepan, ensuring the bottom of the bowl does not touch the water. As the egg whites heat, whisk gently by hand the entire time. You’ll want to heat the egg white mixture to 120 F (50 C) which you can test by sticking a candy thermometer into the mixture or go by feel (the mixture should be hot to the touch) – should be around 5-6 minutes or so. The mixture should become smooth and the sugar should be dissolved. Remove the bowl from the saucepan and place in the base of a stand mixer (or simply use a hand beater) and beat on medium speed for approximately 7 minutes until the mixture is fluffy, white and voluminous. Add the vanilla and beat for 30 seconds or so.

    Use a knife to cut out a hole in the middle of each cupcake – but keep these cake cores. Fill a piping bag fitted with a large round tip with the marshmallow fluff frosting and pipe into the middle of each cupcakes – be careful not to overfill them. Then cut the tops off your cake cores and press on top of the marshmallow filling so the cupcake has a closed top once again. Continue with all 12 cupcakes.

    Chocolate ganache

    Then it’s time to make the chocolate ganache. Roughly chop your chocolate and place into a small bowl. Then gently heat your cream over a low heat on the stove until it becomes warm to the touch but do not boil. Pour the warm cream over the chocolate and leave for approximately 1-2 minutes. Then gently whisk the mixture until combined and smooth. Pop the chocolate ganache into the fridge to cool and thicken slightly for about 20 minutes or so. It’s really up to you how thick or thin your would like the ganache. You can refrigerate it for longer if you want it thicker. Give it a stir and then drizzle over the top of each cupcake. I like to remove the cupcake liners here so the chocolate ganache can drip down the sides.

    Vanilla buttercream

    Finally, it’s time to make the buttercream for the swirls. In a small bowl, add your butter (ensuring it is nice and soft) and give it a good stir with a spoon. Then add half of your powdered or icing sugar, milk and vanilla and stir together. Once it is smooth, add the rest of the powdered or icing sugar. Then transfer this mixture to a piping bag fitted with a small round tip and pipe the swirls on top. Just make sure the ganache has set slightly so the two frostings don’t run together. Enjoy!

  • Layered Peanut Butter Chocolate Cheesecake Bars

    How to make Layered Peanut Butter Chocolate Cheesecake Bars

    Yield: 16 smaller bars or 9 larger bars

    Prep Time: 5 hours 25 minutes (includes cooling & chilling time)

    Cook: 45 minutes

    Ingredients

    For the crust:

    18 Oreo cookies
    3 tablespoons butter, melted

    For the peanut butter cheesecake layer:

    8 ounces cream cheese, softened to room temperature
    1/4 cup creamy peanut butter
    1/4 cup granulated sugar
    1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1 large egg, at room temperature

    For the chocolate cheesecake layer:

    8 ounces cream cheese, softened to room temperature
    1/4 cup granulated sugar
    2 ounces semisweet chocolate, melted and slightly cooled
    1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1 large egg, at room temperature

    Directions

    For the crust:

    Preheat oven to 325°F.  Line an 8-inch square baking pan with aluminum foil, making sure to leave some overhang for easy removal, and set aside.  Add the Oreos to the bowl of a food processor and process until you have fine crumbs.  Add in the melted butter and process until all of the crumbs are moistened.

    Scoop the mixture into the prepared baking pan and press it down firmly in an even layer.  Bake at 325°F for 10 minutes.  Remove from the oven and set aside to cool.

    For the peanut butter cheesecake layer:

    In a large mixing bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese until smooth.  Add in the granulated sugar, peanut butter, and vanilla extract and mix until fully combined.  Add in the egg and mix on low speed until well combined.  Set aside.

    For the chocolate cheesecake layer:

    In a large mixing bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese until smooth.  Add in the granulated sugar, melted chocolate, and vanilla extract and mix until fully combined.  Add in the egg and mix on low speed until well combined.  Set aside.

    To make the cheesecake:

    Pour the peanut butter cheesecake filling over the prepared crust.  Spread the mixture evenly over the crust, making sure to smooth the top out as well as possible.  Gently add the chocolate cheesecake filling on top of the peanut butter cheesecake filling and smooth the top out.  Bake at 325°F for about 35 minutes or until set.  Remove from the oven and cool completely in the pan on a wire rack (for about two hours).  Transfer to the refrigerator for about 3 hours or until the cheesecake is completely chilled.  Lift the cheesecake out of the pan with the foil and slice into bars.

    Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to four days.

  • Nutella Stuffed Chocolate Whoopie Pies

    How to make Nutella Stuffed Chocolate Whoopie Pies

    Yield: 14 whoopie pies

    Prep Time: 30 minutes

    Cook: 1 hour

    Ingredients

    Chocolate whoopie pies

    1/2 cup (115 grams or 1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
    3/4 cup (135 grams) brown sugar
    1/4 cup (50 grams) granulated or caster sugar
    1 large egg
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1 teaspoon baking soda
    1 and 3/4 cup (245 grams) plain flour
    1/2 cup (40 grams) cocoa powder
    3/4 cup (180 ml) buttermilk

    Nutella frosting

    1/2 cup (115 grams or 1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
    3 cups (375 grams ) icing or powdered sugar
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    3/4 cup (200 grams) Nutella
    2-3 tablespoons milk

    Directions

    Line two oven trays with baking paper. In a large mixing bowl, beat the butter and sugars with an electric mixer until pale and creamy. Add the egg and vanilla extract and beat until combined. Sift in the baking soda, plain flour and cocoa powder. Add half the buttermilk and gently fold with a spatula, before adding the rest of the buttermilk. When the mixture is combined, it will be quite wet – similar to cake batter.

    Cover the batter with plastic wrap and pop into the freezer for 30 minutes. This will help firm up the mixture so you can easily roll spoonfuls of the batter into balls using your hands – just like you would for cookies. They will be a bit sticky but rolling them in your hands will help achieve a nice smooth finish.

    Preheat the oven to 360 F (180 C). Place the cookies onto the prepared trays, leaving space for them to spread out when cooking. Bake for approximately 8-10 minutes. Leave them to cool for a few minutes and then transfer the cookies onto a wire rack. While they are cooling, you can make the Nutella frosting.

    To make the icing, beat the butter with an electric mixer until creamy. Add the icing sugar, one cup at a time, and beat with the electric mixer until smooth and creamy. Add the vanilla and beat again. Then add the Nutella and mix through, adding the milk as needed. The frosting should be fairly thick and easy to apply.

    Pipe the icing onto one whoopie pie before placing another on top. Continue until all whoopie pies are complete.

  • Chocolate Raspberry Pancake Cake

    How to make Chocolate Raspberry Pancake Cake

    Yield: Two 5-layer pancake cakes

    Prep Time: 15 minutes

    Cook: 15 minutes

    Ingredients

    For the raspberry whipped cream:

    4 ounces (113 grams) fresh raspberries, plus more for garnish
    3/4 cup (179 grams) heavy cream
    1 tablespoon powdered sugar
    1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

    For the pancakes:

    1 1/3 cups (170 grams) all-purpose flour
    3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
    2 teaspoons baking powder
    1/4 cup (50 grams) light brown sugar
    1/4 teaspoon fine salt
    3 tablespoons (43 grams) unsalted butter, melted, plus more for cooking
    1 teaspoon vanilla
    1 1/4 cups (284 grams) whole milk
    1 large egg
    1/2 cup (85 grams) semisweet chocolate chips

    For serving:

    Powdered sugar, for dusting
    Semisweet chocolate, melted

    Directions

    Make the whipped cream:

    Place the raspberries in the bowl of a food processor or blender and puree until smooth. Pass through a fine mesh strainer to remove and discard seeds.

    In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla until soft peaks form. Gently fold in the raspberry puree. Set aside.

    Make the pancakes:

    In a medium bowl, whisk dry ingredients together. Add wet ingredients and whisk until combined. The batter will be lumpy. Stir in the chocolate chips.

    Heat a griddle over medium heat and lightly grease with butter.

    Use a 1/4-cup measuring cup to scoop batter onto the griddle. Cook until pancakes have bubbles on the top, then flip them over and cook for an additional minute. Repeat with the remaining batter.

    Stack the pancakes, spreading about 3 heaping teaspoons of whipped cream on top of each one. Garnish with powdered sugar and additional raspberries, if desired.

  • Deep Fried Cookie Dough

    How to make Deep Fried Cookie Dough

    Yield: about 24 cookie dough balls

    Prep Time: 20 minutes

    Cook: 15 minutes

    Ingredients

    For the cookie dough:

    1 stick (113 grams) unsalted butter, at room temperature
    1/2 cup (100 grams) packed brown sugar
    2 tablespoons granulated sugar
    1 egg, at room temperature
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1 1/4 cups (159 grams) all-purpose flour
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1 cup (170 grams) semisweet chocolate chips

    For frying:

    1 1/4 cups (159 grams) all-purpose flour
    1 teaspoon baking powder
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    1/4 cup granulated sugar
    1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (255 grams) milk
    2 teaspoon vegetable oil
    1 quart oil, for frying

    Melted chocolate, for drizzling
    Powdered sugar, for dusting

    Directions

    Make the cookie dough:

    In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar on medium-high speed until very well combined. Add in the egg and vanilla and beat until combined. On low speed gradually add the flour and salt. Stir in the chocolate chips.

    Shape the dough into 1-inch balls and place on a parchment lined baking sheet. Refrigerate until firm, at least one hour or up to 2 days if placed in an airtight container.

    Prepare the dough for frying:

    In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, and sugar. Add the milk and vegetable oil, and whisk until the batter is smooth and free of lumps.

    In a medium heavy pot, heat 2 inches of oil until it reaches 360°F. Take a chilled ball of cookie dough and dip it in the batter, turning it over with your hands until it’s completely covered. Let excess batter drip back into the bowl, then gently drop it into the oil. Fry up to 4 or 5 balls at a time.

    Fry the balls for about 1 1/2 to 2 minutes per side, or until they’re puffed and a dark golden brown on all sides. Remove them from the oil using a frying skimmer and place them on a paper towel-lined baking sheet to drain. Repeat with the rest of the cookie dough balls and batter. Maintain the temperature of the oil between 360 to 370°F.

    Drizzle the balls with melted chocolate and a dusting of powdered sugar before serving warm. These are best served the day they’re fried, but can be kept warm in a 175°F oven until ready to serve.

  • Chewy Brownies

    How to make Chewy Brownies

    Yield: 9 large or 16 small brownies

    Prep Time: 15 minutes

    Cook: 30 minutes

    Ingredients

    1 1/4 cups (249 grams) granulated sugar
    5 tablespoons (71 grams) unsalted butter
    3/4 cup (75 grams) unsweetened cocoa powder
    1/3 cup vegetable oil
    2 large eggs plus 1 egg yolk, cold
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1/2 cup (63 grams) all-purpose flour
    1/8 teaspoon baking soda
    1 tablespoon cornstarch
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    3/4 cup (128 grams) semisweet chocolate chips

    Directions

    Preheat the oven to 325°F. Line a 8 by 8-inch pan with foil and spray with nonstick cooking spray.

    In a microwave safe bowl, add the butter and sugar. Microwave for about 1 minute, or until the butter is melted. Stir in the oil and cocoa powder. Let cool.

    Whisk in the eggs, egg yolk, and vanilla. With a rubber spatula, stir in the flour, baking soda, cornstarch, and salt until combined. Stir in the chocolate chips.

    Spread the brownie batter evenly into the prepared pan. Place in the oven and bake for 30 minutes, or until the brownies are set and a cake tested inserted into the center has moist crumbs attached. Do not overcook. Let cool completely before cutting and serving.

    Brownies can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.

  • Cream Cheese Stuffed Chocolate Cookies

    How to make Cream Cheese Stuffed Chocolate Cookies

    Yield: 22 cookies

    Prep Time: 40 minutes

    Cook: 30 minutes

    Ingredients

    For the Cream Cheese Filling:
    6 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
    3 tablespoons granulated sugar
    3/4 teaspoon vanilla
    For the Cookie Dough:
    1 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
    1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
    1/2 teaspoon baking soda
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    1/2 cup (4 ounces) butter, room temperature
    1/2 cup granulated sugar, plus extra for rolling the dough
    1/2 cup brown sugar
    1 egg + 1 egg yolk
    1/2 teaspoon vanilla

    Directions

    For the Cream Cheese Filling:
    With an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla together until smooth. Cover and and place in the fridge for at least an hour.
    For the Cookie Dough:

    Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

    In a mixing bowl, mix flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt; set aside.

    In the bowl of a standing electric mixer, cream butter and sugar together on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Beat in the egg, yolk, and vanilla. Add in the flour mixture a little at a time and mix until combined.

    Place about 1/4 cup sugar in a bowl; set aside.

    Use a size #40 cookie scoop (1 1/2 tablespoons) to portion out the dough. Use you hands to form the ball of dough into a flat round circle.

    Place a teaspoon of the cream cheese mixture in the center of each circle and then fold up the dough around, sealing the cream cheese in.

    Roll the dough into a ball and then roll it in the bowl of sugar. Place on a cookie sheet and repeat with the remaining dough.

    Space the balls of dough 2 inches apart (I put 8 on a standard cookie sheet). Use the bottom of a glass or a measuring cup to gently press down on each ball of dough to slightly flatten.

    Bake for 9-11 minutes or until cracks begin to form on top. Let cook on pan for 2 minutes and then move to a wire rack to cool completely.

  • How to Make Bagel Bombs

    How to make Bagel Bombs

    Yield: 16 balls

    Prep Time: 30 minutes

    Cook: 30 minutes

    If you don’t have instant yeast, you can always substitute with the same amount of active dry yeast. Simply add the active dry yeast to the warm water and let it proof for 5 minutes before proceeding with the recipe.

    If you can’t barley malt syrup (which I find on Amazon or at Whole Foods), use brown sugar.

    Ingredients

    For the dough:

    1 tablespoon instant yeast
    4 cups (482 grams) bread flour
    2 teaspoons salt
    1 tablespoon barley malt syrup
    1 1/2 cups lukewarm water

    For the water bath:

    2 quarts water
    2 tablespoons barley malt syrup
    1 tablespoon granulated sugar

    For the filling & topping:

    8 ounces (227 grams) cream cheese, at room temperature
    1 egg white
    Desired toppings

    Directions

    Make the dough:

    Combine all the dough ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook. Knead on medium-low speed for about 10 minutes (or knead vigorously by hand for 12 to 15 minutes). The dough will be stiff and hold its shape without spreading. Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl, cover, and let rise until puffy but not necessarily doubled in size, 1 to 1 1/2 hours.

    Transfer the dough to a work surface and divide into 16 pieces. Roll each piece into a smooth, round ball. Place on a lined baking pan or lightly greased baking pan and cover. Let them rest for 30 minutes. They may puff up slightly.

    While the dough rests, form cream cheese into sixteen 1-tablespoon balls. Freeze.

    Prepare the water bath:

    Heat the water, malt powder, and sugar to a gentle boil in a large, wide pan. Preheat the oven to 425°F.

    With your hands, stretch and flatten each piece of dough place a frozen cream cheese ball into the center. Enclose the cream cheese with the dough, pinching to seal and rolling into an even ball.

    Boil the bombs for 30 seconds per side then remove to a baking pan.

    Top and bake:

    Brush with the egg wash, coating with desired toppings, and bake for about 20 minutes, or until golden brown.

    To make ahead:

    Individually wrap each bagel bomb in plastic wrap, then place in an airtight container. Freeze for up to 3 months. For best results, let thaw in the fridge overnight then reheat in a 350°F oven until warmed through.

    Inspired by Milk Bar in NYC

  • How to Make Bagels

    How to make Bagels

    Yield: 8 bagels

    Prep Time: 30 minutes

    Cook: 30 minutes

    If you don’t have instant yeast, you can always substitute with the same amount of active dry yeast. Simply add the active dry yeast to the warm water and let it proof for 5 minutes before proceeding with the recipe.

    If you can’t barley malt syrup (which I find on Amazon or at Whole Foods), use brown sugar.

    Ingredients

    For the dough:

    1 tablespoon instant yeast
    4 cups (17 ounces) bread flour
    2 teaspoons salt
    1 tablespoon barley malt syrup
    1 1/2 cups lukewarm water

    For the water bath:

    2 quarts (64 ounces) water
    2 tablespoons barley malt syrup
    1 tablespoon granulated sugar

    For the topping:

    1 egg white
    Desired toppings, see above

    Directions

    Make the dough:

    Combine all the dough ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook. Knead on medium-low speed for about 10 minutes (or knead vigorously by hand for 12 to 15 minutes). The dough will be stiff and hold its shape without spreading. Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl, cover, and let rise until puffy but not necessarily doubled in size, 1 to 1 1/2 hours.

    Transfer the dough to a work surface and divide into eight pieces. Roll each piece into a smooth, round ball. Place on a silicone mat-lined baking pan or lightly greased baking pan (do NOT use parchment paper) and cover the balls with plastic wrap. Let them rest for 30 minutes. They may puff up slightly.

    Prepare the water bath:

    Meanwhile, prepare the water bath by heating the water, malt powder, and sugar to a gentle boil in a large, wide pan. Preheat the oven to 425°F.

    Use your index finger to poke a hole through the center of each dough ball then twirl the dough around your finger to stretch the hole to a 2-inch diameter. Place each bagel on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Transfer the bagels, 4 at a time, to the simmering water. Increase the heat to bring the water up to a gentle boil if necessary. Cook the bagels for 2 minutes, gently flip them over, and continue cooking for another minute. Use a skimmer to remove the bagels back to the baking sheet and repeat with remaining 4 bagels.

    Top and bake:

    Beat the egg white with 1 tablespoon of water and coat each bagel with the mixture. Sprinkle any desired toppings evenly over the bagels.

    Bake the bagels for 20 to 25 minutes, or until they reach their desired brown color. Remove the bagels from the oven and cool completely on a wire rack.

    Serve or store in an airtight container for up to 3 days. Stored bagels are best served toasted. You can also freeze the bagels in an airtight container for up to 2 months.

  • Monkey Bread

    How to make Monkey Bread

    Yield: 8 servings

    Prep Time: 2 hours

    Cook: 30 minutes

    Ingredients

    For the dough:
    1 package quick rise active yeast
    1 1/2 cup milk, warm (120 degrees F)
    1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon sugar
    5 tablespoons butter, melted (no hotter than 120 degrees F)
    1 large egg
    1 teaspoon salt
    4 1/2 cups flour
    For the sugar coating:
    10 tablespoons butter
    2/3 cup brown sugar
    2/3 cup granulated sugar
    2 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
    For the glaze:
    1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
    2 tablespoons butter
    1/2 teaspoon vanilla
    1 1/2 to 2 cups powdered sugar

    Directions

    For the dough:
    Mix together warm milk, yeast, and 1 tablespoons sugar in a bowl of a standing mixer fitted with a dough hook (you can also just do this by hand) and let it dissolve for 5 minutes. Mix in the 1/4 cup sugar, butter, egg, and salt. Start adding in the flour while mixing, adding 1 cup at a time until you’ve added 4 cups (scrape sides of bowl as needed). Mix on low for 5 minutes, adding a couple tablespoons of flour at a time if the dough gets too sticky. Place dough in a large greased bowl and turn the dough over so the top is greased. Cover with a towel and let it rise for an hour.
    Grease a bundt pan and set aside.
    Melt the 10 tablespoons butter in a bowl. In another bowl, mix brown sugar, granulated sugar, and cinnamon.
    Pinch or cut off dough into 1 1/2 inch pieces. Roll into balls (use flour as needed), dip in the melted butter, and roll in the sugar mixture. Place the coated balls of dough into the greased pan. Mix any remaining butter and sugar mixture together and pour over the balls. Cover the pan with plastic wrap and let rise for 30-45 minutes.
    Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Bake for 25-30 minutes until golden. Let cool for 5 minutes and then remove onto a platter.
    For the glaze:
    Heat cream and butter together in the microwave until melted. Beat in vanilla and powdered sugar until desired consistency. Pour over the warm Monkey Bread. Serve.

  • No Knead Rosemary Parmesan Skillet Bread

    How to make No Knead Rosemary Parmesan Skillet Bread

    Yield: 1 loaf

    Prep Time: 15 minutes

    Cook: 40 minutes

    If you don’t have instant yeast, you can always substitute with the same amount of active dry yeast. Simply add the active dry yeast to the warm water and let it proof for 5 minutes before proceeding with the recipe.

    Ingredients

    2 1/4 teaspoons (1 package) instant yeast
    2 cups lukewarm water
    4 1/2 cups (574 grams) all-purpose flour
    2 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary, plus more for sprinkling
    1 1/2 teaspoons fine salt
    3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
    1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese

    Directions

    In a large mixing bowl, combine the yeast and water. Add half the flour in and stir with a wooden spoon. Add the rosemary, salt and remaining flour and stir until combined. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1 hour.

    Brush 2 tablespoons olive oil over the bottom of a 10 or 12-inch cast iron skillet. Sprinkle the dough and your hands with flour before shaping it into a disk. Dough will be sticky, it doesn’t have to shape perfectly. Place in the skillet, cover loosely, let rise until puffy, about 30 minutes.

    Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 400°F.

    Drizzle additional olive oil over the top of the bread. Slash the dough with a sharp knife to create an X shape. Sprinkle with rosemary leaves. Bake for 20 minutes. Remove from oven and sprinkle all over with the Parmesan cheese. Return to oven and bake for an additional 20 minutes, or until golden brown.

    Adapted from Baker Bettie.

  • Potato Burger Buns

    How to make Potato Burger Buns

    Yield: 6 burger buns

    Prep Time: 30 minutes

    Cook: 30 minutes

    Ingredients

    For the dough:

    2 cups (255 grams) all-purpose flour
    1 cup (128 grams) bread flour
    1/2 cup plain mashed potato
    1/4 cup (35 grams) nonfat dry milk
    3 tablespoons light brown sugar
    1 1/4 teaspoons salt
    1 large egg
    2 teaspoons instant yeast
    4 tablespoons (58 grams) unsalted butter, melted
    1 cup (227 grams) lukewarm water

    For the topping:

    1 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted

    Directions

    In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, combine all the ingredients. Stir until combined. Turn the mixer on medium low speed and knead until a soft yet tacky dough forms, about 5 minutes.

    Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl, cover, and let rise in a warm place for 1 hour, or until it’s almost doubled.

    Turn the dough onto a lightly greased surface, gently deflate it, and divide it into 6 equal pieces. Roll each piece into a ball.

    Place the balls on a parchment-lined baking sheet, leaving about 2 to 3 inches between them and flatten gently. Cover and let rise until the buns have doubled in size 45 to 60 minutes minutes. Towards the end of the rising time, preheat the oven to 350°F.

    Bake the buns for 25 to 30 minutes, or until they’re light golden brown. Remove them from the oven, and brush them with melted butter, if desired.

    Transfer the buns to a rack to cool. Store buns, well-wrapped, at room temperature for several days or in the freeze for up to 2 months. Defrost to room temperature then reheat in a 300°F oven or toast.

  • Best Ever Focaccia Pizza

    How to make Best Ever Focaccia Pizza

    Yield: 4 servings

    Prep Time: 20 minutes

    Cook: 2 hours 45 minutes

    You can use the same amount of active dry yeast in place of the instant yeast. Simply allow the active dry yeast to proof for five minutes with the water before adding in.

    Ingredients

    For the dough:

    3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons warm (110-115°F) water
    1 teaspoon instant yeast
    1 1/2 teaspoons granulated sugar
    2 1/2 cups (11.3 ounces) all-purpose flour, plus more for kneading
    1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
    1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil, divided

    For the toppings:

    1 (15 ounce) can crushed San Marzano tomatoes
    1 clove garlic, finely minced
    Salt and pepper, to taste
    4 ounces fresh Mozzarella cheese, sliced
    Fresh basil
    Pizza toppings

    Directions

    In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the water, yeast, sugar, and half the flour. Stir to combine. Fit the mixer with the dough hook and on low speed add in the remaining flour, salt, and 1/4 cup olive oil. Once the dough comes together, increase the speed to medium and knead for 5 to 6 minutes, or until smooth and soft. If the dough is really sticky, add in another tablespoon or two of flour.

    Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, at least 1 hour. OR place the dough in a large plastic bag and refrigerate for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 1 month. If frozen, thaw overnight in the fridge or for a few hours at room temperature. Proceed with the recipe.

    Coat a 9 by 13-inch pan with the remaining 1/4 cup olive oil. Put the dough onto the pan and begin pressing it out with your fingertips to fit the size of the pan. Coax and stretch the dough to fit the entire pan, or just about. Spread your fingers to make little holes all the way through the dough.

    Cover the dough with plastic and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1 hour. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 425°F.

    In a medium bowl combine the tomatoes, garlic, and salt and pepper to taste. Brush the focaccia with the olive oil on the pan. Spread 1/2 cup of the tomato sauce over the dough. Reserve the remaining sauce for another use (it freezes pretty well). Top with the cheese and other desired toppings. Sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste.

    Bake until golden brown, 20 to 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool slightly before cutting and serving.

  • How to Make Crusty Bread Rolls

    How to make Crusty Bread Rolls

    Yield: 8 rolls

    Prep Time: 5 minutes

    Cook: 3 hours 30 minutes

    You can use the same amount of active dry yeast in place of the instant yeast. Simply allow the active dry yeast to proof for five minutes with the water before adding in.

    Ingredients

    2 1/2 cups (11.3 ounces) bread flour
    1/2 teaspoon instant yeast
    1 teaspoon fine salt
    1 1/4 cups (10 ounces) lukewarm water

    Directions

    In a large bowl combine all the ingredients. Stir until the mixture is thick and sticky. No kneading is necessary!

    Cover with plastic wrap and let rise until puffy and bubbly on top, about 3 hours. MAKE AHEAD: Alternatively, you can also let the dough rise overnight in the fridge.

    Using a scraper, fold the dough over about 12 times, adding enough flour so that it doesn’t stick. Use the scraper to cut the dough into 8 equal pieces. Flour your hands before shaping each piece into a ball.

    Place the dough balls on a parchment-lined baking sheet and cover with a clean towel. Let rise until puffy, about 35 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 450°F.

    Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until golden brown. Serve warm.

    MAKE AHEAD: Store bread rolls in a container at room temperature for up to 2 days or in the freezer for up to 1 month and re-crisp in a 325°F oven for 5 minutes from room temperature or about 15 minutes from frozen.

    Adapted from Jenny Can Cook

  • Whole Grain Oat Rolls

    How to make Whole Grain Oat Rolls

    Yield: 9 rolls

    Prep Time: 20 minutes

    Cook: 2 hours 10 minutes

    White whole wheat flour works best here because you get all the nutrition of whole wheat without all the dense texture and intense wheat flavor. However, if you can’t find it, feel free to use regular whole wheat flour. You can also use active dry yeast in this recipe, just be sure to let it proof with the liquid mixture for 5 minutes.

    Ingredients

    2 tablespoons unsalted butter
    1/2 cup whole milk
    3/4 cup water
    3 teaspoons instant yeast
    2 tablespoons honey, plus more for serving (if desired)
    1 cup (4.5 ounces) white whole wheat flour
    1 cup (3.2 ounces) oat flour
    1 1/2 cups (6.75 ounces) all-purpose flour
    1 teaspoon fine salt

    1 large egg
    Old fashioned oats, for sprinkling

    Directions

    In a small saucepan combine the butter, milk, and water. Set over low heat until the butter is melted. Let the mixture cool to about 110°F, or just warm to the touch. Stir in the yeast and honey.

    In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook (or by hand), combine the white whole wheat flour, oat flour, all-purpose flour, and salt. Add the milk mixture and stir until combined. Knead on medium low speed until the dough comes together in a smooth, elastic, and slightly sticky ball. If the dough is unbearably sticky, add more flour 1 tablespoon at a time. Avoid adding extra flour if possible, sticky is better than dense.

    Remove the dough to a well-oiled bowl, turning to coat completely in oil. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise until doubled in size, about 1 hour.

    Turn the dough out onto a floured work surface and divide into three equal pieces. Divide each piece into three pieces, for a total of 9 rolls. Form each piece into a smooth tight ball by stretching the corners around the bottom and rolling between your palm and the counter.

    Grease an 8 by 8-inch baking dish. Place each ball of dough in the dish and cover with plastic wrap. Let rise again until puffy, about 30 minutes.

    Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 400°F.

    Beat the egg with 1 tablespoon of water and brush over the rolls. Sprinkle with oats. Bake the rolls for about 18 to 20 minutes, or until golden. Serve with honey and butter, if desisred.

    To make ahead:

    Wrap the completely cooled rolls tightly in foil then place in an airtight container. Freeze for up to 1 month.

    To thaw:

    Let the rolls thaw at room temperature overnight before rewarming in a 300°F oven for 10 minutes.

    To make straight from the freezer:

    Loosen the foil around the rolls place directly on the oven rack of a 300°F oven. Bake for 20 minutes, or until warmed all the way through. Serve immediately before the rolls dry out from reheating.

  • How to Make Sourdough Bread

    How to make Sourdough Bread

    Yield: 2 small loaves

    Prep Time: 15 minutes

    Cook: 4 hours 45 minutes

    If you have questions about feeding the starter or how you should time your sourdough making, see the helpful schedule directly above.

    Ingredients

    150 grams active, fed starter
    250 grams bottled water
    25 grams olive oil
    500 grams bread flour
    10 grams fine sea salt
    Cornmeal, for dusting

    Directions

    In a the bowl of a stand mixer combine the starter, water, olive oil, and bread flour. Mix with your hands until it comes together in a shaggy mass. Let it rest for 30 minutes.

    Attach the dough hook to the mixer and begin kneading the dough on low speed. Add in the salt. Increase the speed to medium and knead for about 5 minutes, or until the dough is smooth and soft.

    Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and a clean kitchen towel. Let it rise in a warm place until doubled in volume. In a warm climate, this will take about 3 hours. In a cold climate, this can take up to 12 hours. You can let the dough rise overnight in the fridge.

    Remove the dough from the bowl and place on a lightly floured work surface. Cut the dough in half to make 2 smaller loaves. Cover and store the extra dough in the fridge or freezer until ready to bake.

    Gather the dough, one side at a time, and fold it over into the bottom center. Place the dough seam side down. Use your palms to roll it around into a tight ball. Coat the bottom of a Dutch oven with cornmeal and place the dough inside. Cover and let rise again for 1 to 2 hours, or until puffy.

    Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 450°F. Use a very sharp knife to make a 2-inch long shallow slash in the center of the dough.

    Cover the dough with the Dutch oven lid and place in the oven. Reduce the temperature to 400°F and bake for 20 minutes. Remove the lid and continue to bake uncovered for an additional 40 minutes, or until very golden brown. During the last minute or baking, crack the oven door open just enough to allow moisture to escape for a crisper crust. The sourdough is done when the internal temperature reaches about 205°F.

    Remove the bread from the oven and let cool on a wire rack for an hour before slicing and serving.

    Adapted from The Clever Carrot and The Bread Bible

  • How to Make Sourdough Starter

    How to make Sourdough Starter

    Cook: 2 weeks

    Ingredients

    Organic whole-wheat flour or rye flour
    Bread flour
    Bottled water

    Directions

    Day 1:

    In a perfectly clean bowl, combine a scant cup (120 grams) organic whole wheat flour and 1/2 cup (120 grams) bottled water. With a clean spoon, stir until a stiff dough forms. If the dough is extremely dry, add very small amounts of water until moistened. Scrape the dough into the 4-cup container. You should have about 1 cup (240 grams). Cover tightly in plastic wrap and place in a cool area for 48 hours. If you don’t have a cool area, let it sit for only 24 hours and feed as described for Day 3.

    Day 2:

    There will be no visible changes.

    Day 3:

    The consistency will now resemble a thick pancake batter and there may be a few bubbles. With a clean spoon, remove and throw away about half the starter, about 1/2 cup (120 grams).

    Stir in a scant 1/2 cup (60 grams) bread flour and 1/4 cup (60 grams) bottled water. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and leave at room temperature for 24 hours. After 12 hours the starter may have increased quite a bit and have lots of bubbles. Don’t be concerned if it deflates and falls back down.

    Day 4:

    With a clean spoon, again remove and throw out about half of the starter, 1/2 cup (120 grams). Stir in a scant 1/2 cup (60 grams) bread flour and 1/4 cup (60 grams) bottled water. Cover with plastic wrap, but not tightly, as the gases forming will need to escape. Leave at room temperature for 24 hours.

    Day 5:

    If the starter is active, it will have increased in volume to at least 3 cups, even 4. It will dome and start to recede. If this hasn’t happened yet, repeat Day 4 steps until it reaches this stage.

    With a clean spoon, again remove and throw out half the starter (1/2 cup or 120 grams).

    Stir in 1/2 cup (60 grams) bread flour and 1/4 cup (60 grams) bottled water.

    You will now have 1 cup (60 grams) active starter. Cover with plastic wrap and let sit at warm room temeperature for about 4 hours, until it has almost doubled. If you want to bake bread, you can now expand it by feeding it with flour and water. If you want to wait, you can refrigerate it overnight and start expanding it the next day. If you don’t plan to use it for several days, feed it again to double it, let it sit for 1 hour, then refrigerate it.

    The starter will mature over the next few weeks, increasing in strength and flavor. For the first 2 weeks, store at least 1 cup (240 grams) of it and feed it at least three times a week. After 2 weeks of regular feeding at least 3 times a week the culture is mature and bread made from it will be more mellow and complex. Now you can switch to once-a-week feeding if you only make bread once a week.

  • Dutch Crunch Bread Rolls

    How to make Dutch Crunch Bread Rolls

    Yield: 6 rolls

    Prep Time: 15 minutes

    Cook: 2 hours 30 minutes

    *Rice flour is a must for the topping in this recipe. It can be found in most grocery stores with other gluten-free flours and products.

    You can also substitute active dry yeast for the instant yeast at a 1:1 ratio in this recipe. It must be proofed by combining it with the warm liquid ingredients in the dough for 5 minutes before proceeding.

    Ingredients

    For the rolls:

    1 package (2 1/4 teaspoons) instant yeast
    1/4 cup lukewarm water
    1 cup lukewarm milk
    1 tablespoon granulated sugar
    2 teaspoons vegetable oil
    3 cups (13.5 ounces) all-purpose flour
    1 1/2 teaspoons fine salt

    For the topping:

    1 package (2 1/4 teaspoons) instant yeast
    3/4 cup lukewarm water
    1 tablespoon granulated sugar
    1 tablespoon vegetable oil
    1/4 teaspoon fine salt
    1 cup (5 ounces) rice flour*

    Directions

    For the rolls:

    In the bowl of an electric mixer combine yeast, water, milk, sugar, and oil. Gradually add in the flour and stir until moistened. Add in the salt. Fit the mixer with the dough hook attachment and mix on medium speed until the dough comes together in a smooth elastic ball, about 5 minutes. If the dough is unbearably sticky, add in more flour 1 tablespoon at a time. The dough can also be kneaded by hand.

    Transfer the dough to a lightly greased bowl and cover. Let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1 hour.

    Turn the dough out onto a floured work surface and divide into six equal portions. Shape each portion into a tight ball and place on a parchment lined baking sheet. Cover and let rise while you prepare the topping.

    Make ahead: At this point the dough can be made ahead of time by covering tightly and refrigerating for up to 24 hours. Remove and let come to room temperature. If two fingers pressed into the dough leave indentations it’s ready.

    For the topping:

    In a large bowl combine all the ingredients and let rest, covered, for 15 minutes, or until frothy.

    Make ahead: Store the topping in a covered but ventilated container in the fridge for up to a week. Let come to room temperature before using.

    Spread a generous layer of the topping all over the rolls, maintaining a thick coating. You should use almost all of the topping. Let rise uncovered for another 20 minutes.

    Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 400°F.

    Bake the rolls for 25 minutes, or until golden brown.

  • Cheddar Potato Rolls

    How to make Cheddar Potato Rolls

    Yield: 24 rolls

    Prep Time: 20 minutes

    Cook: 4 hours

    Ingredients

    1 cup warm water (110°F)
    2 1/4 teaspoons (1 packet) instant yeast
    4 cups (18 ounces) all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
    1 medium russet potato (7 to 8 ounces)
    1 stick (4 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature
    1/4 cup sugar
    1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
    1 teaspoon mustard powder
    2 large eggs, at room temperature
    2 cups (8 ounces) grated sharp cheddar cheese, divided
    2 tablespoons melted butter

    Directions

    In a medium bowl, combine the water, yeast, and 1 1/2 cups (6.75 ounces) of the flour and stir until combined. Cover with plastic wrap and set aside in a warm place until doubled in size with large bubbles on the surface, 20 to 30 minutes.

    Meanwhile, prick the potato all over with a fork. Microwave until tender, 8 to 10 minutes. Let cool, then peel the potato and grate on the large holes of a box grater.

    Combine the butter, sugar, salt and mustard powder in a stand mixer. Beat with the paddle attachment on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Beat in the eggs and grated potato until combined, then beat in the yeast mixture and 1 1/2 cups cheddar until incorporated. Reduce the mixer speed to low and gradually beat in the remaining 2 1/2 cups flour until the dough starts coming together in a soft, sticky ball. Shape into a loose ball and transfer to a lightly oiled bowl, turning to coat. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise until doubled in size, about 1 1/2 hours.

    Preheat the oven to 350°F. Spray a 9-by-13-inch baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and divide into 24 pieces. Shape each piece into a ball, dusting with flour as needed, and arrange in the baking dish so they are slightly touching. MAKE AHEAD: At this point the shaped rolls can be covered and refrigerated overnight, let sit at room temperature for 1 hour or until puffy. If already at room temperature, let rise for about 30 minutes, or until puffy.

    Spray a sheet of foil with nonstick cooking spray and loosely cover the rolls, oiled-side down. Bake until just firm to the touch, about 30 minutes. Uncover, brush with the 2 tablespoons melted butter and sprinkle with the remaining 1/2 cup cheddar. Continue baking, uncovered, until the rolls are golden brown and the cheese is melted, about 20 more minutes. Let cool at least 20 minutes before serving.

    Another make-ahead option: Parbake, covered, for 30 minutes, then let cool and refrigerate overnight. Bring to room temperature, brush with the butter and bake, uncovered, 40 minutes, sprinkling with 1/2 cup cheddar during the last 15 minutes.

    From Food Network

  • How to Make Burger Buns

    How to make Burger Buns

    Yield: 8 buns

    Prep Time: 20 minutes

    Cook: 2 hours 35 minutes

    Ingredients

    3 tablespoons warm milk
    1 cup warm water
    2 1/4 teaspoons (1 packet) instant yeast
    2 1/2 tablespoons granulated sugar
    1 large egg
    3 cups (13.5 ounces) bread flour (do not substitute this)
    1/3 cup (1.5 ounces) all-purpose flour
    1 1/2 teaspoons fine salt
    3 tablespoons (1.5 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature

    For topping:

    1 large egg beaten with 1 tablespoon water
    Sesame seeds

    Directions

    In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, combine the milk, water, yeast, sugar, and egg. If using active dry yeast, let the mixture sit for 5 minutes, until frothy, before continuing. Add the flour to the bowl, and mix until incorporated. Mix in the salt and butter. Knead on medium low speed for about 10 minutes, or until the dough comes together into a soft yet tacky dough (should not be unbearably sticky). Avoid adding too much extra flour because it will create tough buns, it’s better to be sticky than dense I promise!

    Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1 to 2 hours.

    Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. Divide the dough into 8 equal parts. Gently roll each portion of dough into a ball and place on baking sheet, 2 to 3 inches apart. Cover with a clean towel and let rise again until puffy and almost doubled, 1 to 1 1/2 hours.

    Preheat the oven to 400°F. Brush the tops of the buns lightly with the egg wash. Sprinkle with sesame seeds. Bake the buns about 15 minutes, rotating halfway through baking, until the tops are golden brown. Transfer to a rack to cool completely. Serve or store in an airtight container in the freezer for up to one month. Let defrost at room temperature before reheating in a 350°F oven until warmed or toasting.

  • Cheesy Garlic Herb Crack Bread

    How to make Cheesy Garlic Herb Crack Bread

    Yield: 8 servings

    Prep Time: 10 minutes

    Cook: 30 minutes

    Ingredients

    1 crusty sourdough or artisan loaf
    4 ounces (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted
    2 garlic cloves, minced
    1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
    1 tablespoon fresh parsley, chopped
    2 teaspoons fresh rosemary, minced
    2 teaspoons fresh thyme, minced
    3/4 cup shredded Mozzarella cheese

    Directions

    Preheat the oven to 350°F.

    Combine the melted butter, garlic, salt, parsley, rosemary, and thyme in a small bowl.

    With a serrated bread knife, cut the bread on a diagonal into 1-inch diamonds, being careful not to slice all the way through. Use your fingers to pry open each crack and drizzle with 1 teaspoon of butter and a pinch of the shredded cheese. Don’t worry if you make a bit of a mess.

    Wrap the entire loaf in foil. To make ahead, place the foil wrapped bread in the fridge overnight or in the freezer for a month, thawing before baking. Place on a rimmed baking sheet, and bake for 15 minutes, or until the cheese has mostly melted. Carefully remove the foil and continue to bake for another 5 minutes, or until crusty. Serve immediately.

    Adapted from Recipe Tin Eats

  • How to Make Crescent Rolls

    How to make Crescent Rolls

    Yield: 16 rolls

    Prep Time: 20 minutes

    Cook: 2 hours

    Ingredients

    1/4 cup water
    3/4 cup whole milk
    1 stick (4 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature, divided
    1 packet (2 1/4 teaspoons) instant yeast
    1/4 cup granulated sugar
    1 large egg
    1 teaspoon fine salt
    4 cups (18 ounces) all-purpose flour
    1 egg white, beaten

    Directions

    In a small saucepan combine the water, milk, and half the butter (4 tablespoons). Set over medium heat and cook until the butter is melted. Remove from heat and let cool until just warm, about 110°F.

    In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, stir together the warm water mixture with the yeast, sugar, egg, salt, and flour. Turn the mixer to medium and knead until smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes. Shape the dough into a smooth ball and place in a clean bowl. Cover and let rise until doubled in size, about 1 hour.

    Divide the dough into 2 equal parts, forming each into a smooth ball. On a clean work surface use a rolling pin to roll each ball into a 16 to 17-inch round. Using a small offset spatula or the back of a spoon, spread 2 tablespoons of the remaining room temperature butter onto each dough round. Use a pastry cutter to cut each round into 16 triangles.

    Roll the triangles into crescents, starting from the bigger outside edge. Bring the edges together to create the crescent shape with the tip tucked down under the roll. Place on a parchment lined baking sheet, cover, and let rise for about 20 minutes, or until puffy. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 400°F.

    Combine the egg white with 1 teaspoon water and brush over the rolls. Bake the rolls for 15 minutes, or until golden brown. Let cool slightly before serving.

    MAKE AHEAD: Partially baked rolls can be frozen for up to 1 month. To partially bake rolls follow directions, but let them bake at 400°F for only 4 minutes. Remove from oven, let cool completely, then place in a single layer in a resealable plastic bag in freezer. When ready to serve defrost at room temperature and bake at 400°F for about 10 to 12 minutes, or until golden.

  • Garlic Parmesan Soft Pretzels

    How to make Garlic Parmesan Soft Pretzels

    Yield: 12

    Prep Time: 1 hour 15 minutes

    Cook: 1 hour 30 minutes

    Ingredients

    Pretzel Dough

    1 1/2 cups warm water
    1 tablespoon white sugar
    2 teaspoons salt
    1 tablespoon active dry yeast
    4-4 1/2 cups flour
    1 tablespoon corn starch
    4 tablespoons (2 ounces) melted butter
    1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
    1/4 cup Johnny’s Garlic Spread and Seasoning (*or use 1 1/2 Tbs garlic salt)
    1/2 tablespoon vegetable oil

    Baking Soda Bath

    9 cups water
    2/3 cup baking soda

    Egg Wash

    1 large egg
    1 tablespoon water
    Salt for garnish (Large crystals)

    Directions

    1. Combine water, sugar, salt, and active dry yeast in a stand mixer
    2. Let yeast proof by letting it stand for about 5 minutes. When it starts to foam, move to next step.
    3. Using a kneading hook attachment, turn your mixer on, and slowly add flour, corn starch, and melted butter a little at a time.
    4. Mix on low to combine ingredients.
    5. Add in parmesan cheese and garlic spread and let combine
    6. Increase to medium speed, and knead for 5-7 minutes, until dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl. Kneading allows the gluten to develop, so do not skip this step.
    7. Remove from bowl, put a little oil in bowl, and put dough back in, cover, and let rise until double in size.
    8. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F
    9. Line sheet with parchment paper
    10. Bring 9 cups of water and baking soda to a boil in a large pot.
    11. Divide dough into 12 even balls, and form into pretzel twists
    12. Once water is boiling, place each twist, one at a time, into boiling water for 30 seconds.
    13. Remove, and put on cookie sheet, about an inch or so apart, and continue until all pretzels have had a water bath.
    14. Beat egg yolk and water together and brush over top of pretzels with a pastry brush
    15. Sprinkle with large crystal salt and bake 13-17 minutes until golden brown.
    16. Allow to cool for 5-10 minutes, then serve.

    Rachael Yerkes at Eazy Peazy Mealz

  • How to Make Biscuits: All Purpose Flour vs. Whole Wheat Flour

    How to make Biscuits: All Purpose Flour vs. Whole Wheat Flour

    Yield: 10 to 12 servings

    Prep Time: 10 minutes

    Cook: 30 minutes

    Ingredients

    2 cups (9 ounces) all-purpose flour OR whole wheat wheat flour, plus more for dusting
    2 teaspoons granulated sugar
    1 tablespoon Clabber Girl baking powder
    1/4 teaspoon baking soda
    1 teaspoon fine salt
    6 tablespoons unsalted butter, very cold
    1 cup buttermilk, chilled

    Directions

    Preheat the oven to 450°F.

    In the bowl of a food processor, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add the butter or the shortening and pulse the food processor several times to cut the fat into the flour until the mixture resembles coarse meal. You can also do this by hand with a pastry blender. The faster you do this the better, you want the fat to remain cold. Stir in the buttermilk until just combined. DO NOT overmix, the dough will be slightly sticky.

    Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and dust the dough with flour. Gently pat the dough out until it’s a 1/2-inch in thickness. Use a 2-inch round biscuit cutter to push straight down through the dough to cut out circles, try not to twist the cutter. Place the biscuits on the baking sheet, spacing 2-inches apart. Reform the scrap dough into 1/2-inch thickness, being sure to work with it as little as possible, before cutting out more circles.

    Bake the biscuits until golden brown, about 12 to 15 minutes.

  • Quick and Easy Cinnamon Rolls

    How to make Quick and Easy Cinnamon Rolls

    Yield: 12 cinnamon rolls

    Prep Time: 25 minutes

    Cook: 1 hour

    To ensure these cinnamon rolls really are quick and easy, stick with the instant yeast (or sometimes called rapid-rise yeast) called for in the recipe.

    Ingredients

    For the dough:

    1 cup lukewarm milk
    1/3 cup lukewarm water
    1 package (2 1/4 teaspoons) instant yeast
    3 tablespoons granulated sugar
    3 1/2 cups (15.75 ounces) all-purpose flour
    1 teaspoon fine salt

    For the filling:

    3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
    3 tablespoons ground cinnamon
    1/8 teaspoon fine salt
    4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled

    For the icing:

    3 tablespoons heavy cream
    1 cup powdered sugar

    Directions

    Preheat the oven to 350°F.

    For the dough:

    In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, combine all the dough ingredients and stir until combined. Turn the mixer on medium speed and knead for 5 minutes, or until smooth. Remove the dough to a floured work surface, cover, and let rest for 10 minutes.

    For the filling:

    In a small bowl combine the brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt.

    After the dough has rested, use a floured rolling pin to roll it out into about a 9 by 15-inch rectangle. Brush all over with melted butter. Sprinkle evenly with the cinnamon sugar mixture, leaving a 1/2-inch border at the far edge. Roll the dough up, pinching with your fingers to keep it tightly rolled. Press the seam to seal before positioning the log seam side down.

    Use a very sharp knife to cut off the ends then cut the dough into 11 to 12 equal pieces. Place in greased pie pan or 9 by 13-inch baking pan. At this point you could cover and refrigerate the rolls overnight then let them come back to room temperature for 1 hour before baking. Bake for about 20 to 25 minutes, or until lightly golden brown. Let cool on a wire rack for at least 5 minutes.

    For the icing:

    While the rolls cool, whisk together the icing ingredients until smooth. Drizzle all over the warm rolls and serve.

  • How to Make Biscuits

    How to make Biscuits

    Yield: 10-12 biscuits

    Prep Time: 10 minutes

    Cook: 30 minutes

    Ingredients

    2 cups (9 ounces) all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
    2 teaspoons granulated sugar
    1 tablespoon Clabber Girl baking powder
    1/4 teaspoon baking soda
    1 teaspoon fine salt
    6 tablespoons unsalted butter, very cold
    1 cup buttermilk, chilled

    Directions

    Preheat the oven to 450°F.

    In the bowl of a food processor, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add the butter or the shortening and pulse the food processor several times to cut the butter into the flour until the mixture resembles coarse meal. You can also do this by hand with a pastry blender. The faster you do this the better, you want the fat to remain cold. Stir in the buttermilk until just combined. DO NOT overmix, the dough will be slightly sticky.

    Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and dust the dough with flour. Gently pat the dough out until it’s a 1/2-inch in thickness. Use a 2-inch round biscuit cutter to push straight down through the dough to cut out circles, try not to twist the cutter. Place the biscuits on the baking sheet, spacing 2-inches apart. Reform the scrap dough into 1/2-inch thickness, being sure to work with it as little as possible, before cutting out more circles.

    Bake the biscuits until golden brown, about 12 to 15 minutes.

  • Cheese Stuffed Garlic Rolls

    How to make Cheese Stuffed Garlic Rolls

    Yield: 18 rolls

    Prep Time: 20 minutes

    Cook: 1 hour 20 minutes

    Ingredients

    1 pound pizza dough
    36 mozzarella cubes
    2 tablespoons butter
    1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning
    1 garlic clove, minced
    1/4 cup parmesan cheese

    Directions

    Lightly grease a large baking sheet.

    Divide the dough into 18 equal pieces. Flatten a piece of dough and place 2 chunks of cheese inside, sealing the dough around the cheese tightly. Place on the baking sheet seam side down and continue with the remaining dough. Cover and let rise until puffy, about 30 minutes.

    Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 375°F.

    Combine the butter, Italian seasoning, and garlic in a small bowl and microwave until the butter is melted. Brush all over with the butter mixture. Sprinkle evenly with the Parmesan cheese. Bake for 20 minutes, or until golden brown. Serve very warm.

  • Butterscotch Cinnamon Swirl Quick Bread

    How to make Butterscotch Cinnamon Swirl Quick Bread

    Yield: about 16 servings

    Prep Time: 10 minutes

    Cook: 1 hour

    Feel free to add in about 1/2 cup toasted nuts or even raisins to the bread batter.

    Ingredients

    2 cups (9 ounces) all-purpose flour
    1/2 cup dark brown sugar
    1 cup granulated sugar, divided
    1 teaspoon baking soda
    1/2 teaspoon fine salt
    1 cup buttermilk
    1 large egg
    4 tablespoons (2 ounces) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
    1 1/2 cups butterscotch chips, divided
    3 teaspoons ground cinnamon

    Directions

    Preheat oven to 350°. Spray a 9 by 5-inch loaf pan with nonstick cooking spray.

    In a large bowl combine the flour, brown sugar, 1/2 cup granulated sugar, baking soda and salt. In a glass measuring cup beat the buttermilk, egg and butter until combined then pour over the dry ingredients. Stir in 1/2 cup butterscotch chips until everything is just combined. Do not overmix.

    In a small bowl, combine the cinnamon and remaining 1/2 cup granulated sugar.

    Pour half of the batter into pan then sprinkle with half the cinnamon-sugar. Carefully spread with remaining batter and sprinkle with remaining cinnamon-sugar. Cut through batter with a knife or skewer to swirl.

    Bake for 45 to 50 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let cool 10 minutes before removing from the pan to a wire rack to cool completely.

    In a heatproof bowl microwave the remaining 1 cup butterscotch chips in 30 second bursts, stirring between bursts, until smooth. Drizzle over the bread. Let set before slicing and serving. Bread is best served the day it’s made but can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 days.

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