baking

I know, it’s been a while. Some of you probably thought, “oh well, just another short-lived blog”. While others were thinking “I swear, I am THIS close to taking this blog off my favorites”. And for those die-hard fans who’ve constructed an Unlucky Tales shrine in the lower depths of their closet, I sincerely apologize. I needed to recuperate from Fall semester so naturally I took refuge in the kitchen. I don’t want to get into it but Fudge and I had a tumultuous fling.

Well, I’m happy to report that you can stop holding your breath – that bluish tint in your cheeks isn’t a good look for anybody. I’m back in action and am staring the new year with a recipe….what new years resolution? I was really good the first week. Cardio Barre, two-a-days and nothing but veggies, fruit and protein. I wanted to reward myself (who wouldn’t?) with some Oreo Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookie goodness. This unusual classic comes from Picky Palate.

They were meant as a housewarming gift for a good friend but the baker is obligated to try one, give or take five.

Oreo Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies

2 sticks softened butter

¾ cup packed light brown sugar

1 cup granulated sugar

2 large eggs (large, seriously? Such an unnecessary adj.)

1 tablespoon pure vanilla

3 ½ cups all purpose flour (I used 2 C whole wheat and 1 ½ C all purpose)

1 tsp salt

1 tsp baking soda

10 oz bag chocolate chips

1 bag Oreo cookies (double stuff or bust)

  1. Preheat over to 350 degrees F. Cream butter and sugars until well combined. Add eggs and vanilla until well combined.
  2. In a separate bowl, combine flour, salt and baking soda. Slowly add to wet ingredients. Add chocolate chips. Mix until just combined.
  3. Using an ice cream scoop, scoop two cookies about 2 in around and form around one Oreo. Seal the dough around the Oreo and place on cookie sheet.
  4. Bake cookies 9-13 minutes depending on the amount of dough you ACTUALLY use per cookie.

I didn’t even use the entire box of oreos, whoops. They could probably feed a small city and I don’t hate it.


To further procrastinate, I decided to make this no bake recipe, courtesy of Brown Eyed Baker’s blog, which she adapted from Picky Palate. This is for those of you who have an obsession with all things peanut butter and chocolate, so…..everyone. It couldn’t be easier and only takes about 20 minutes of prep then just pop it in the fridge.

Peanut Butter Cup Rice Krispy Treats:

6 cups Rice Krispies
1 bag (10.5-oz) miniature marshmallows
¼ cup (2 ounces) unsalted butter
2 cups creamy peanut butter
1 bag (12-oz) miniature peanut butter cups (about 40), quartered
1 cup milk chocolate chips (or 6 ounces milk chocolate, finely chopped)

1. Butter a 9×13-inch pan and set aside. I lined the pan with wax paper for easy clean-up.

2. Measure the cereal into a large mixing bowl and set aside.

3. Melt the marshmallows and butter together in the microwave for about 3 minutes. Keep an eye on them so you catch the little suckers that try and spill over.

4. Stir the mixture and pour over the cereal. Mix well so the cereal is coated. Pour into the prepared pan. Use a buttered piece of wax paper to press evenly into pan.

5. In the microwave, melt the peanut butter until thin, about 1 minute. Gently stir in the quartered peanut butter cups. Pour mixture over the rice krispys. Use the back of a spoon to gently spread the peanut butter mixture evenly across the top.

6. Again in the microwave, melt the chocolate. Use a spoon to drizzle the melted chocolate across the top. Lightly spread chocolate so it covers the pan. Place the pan in the refrigerator to set before cutting and serving. Store in an airtight container.

 

Pumpkin Trifle and Gingerbread Truffles

Turkey day was a success. I ate, but mostly drank enough, for the New England Patriots defensive line. I just wanted to give the stamp of approval that we are, in fact, the most gluttonous country in the world. Nothing wrong with showing a little patriotism, right?

My job for Thanksgiving was dessert, naturally. Choosing the perfect dessert is one of life’s greatest challenges in my opinion. Everyone is already full after dinner and you somehow have to convince them that what you’re serving is worth unbuttoning (and possibly unzipping) your pants.

You want something delectable and unforgettable yet light and irresistible after a meal of carbs atop starch with a side of saturated fat.

After milling through my Google Reader, which houses more than 25 baking blogs, I decided on Mini Pumpkin Gingerbread Trifle’s. You can find the delicate little goodies at No Biggie’s blog. It said it made 4 small trifles and we were having 6 people over, so I figured I’d double the recipe, no biggie (you see what I did there?). Here’s what I churned out:

(Un)Fortunately, doubling the recipe left me with a tub of the vanilla/pumpkin pudding and half a gingerbread cake. Determined not to let that go to waste, aka sit by myself with a ladle watching reruns of Friends, I decided to make gingerbread truffles covered with chocolate ganache. So here’s what I did:

1. Mix about 1/4 cup frosting (I used whipped buttercream) with the leftover cake. Hands are the best utensil for this job.

2. Roll 1/2-1 inch balls and freeze for about an hour.

3. In a double broiler, bring water to a boil then simmer and melt about 2 cups of melting chocolate.

4. When chocolate reaches a thin consistency, cover truffle in ganache by submerging the truffle. You could also take the more feminine route and daintily coat it with a spoon, but I like chocolate too much for that. Decorate as desired (I used sprinkles, or “Jimmies” for you mid-westerners/east coasters).

Everything was a hit and really yummy. Stay tuned, though, I’m bound to miss my flight back to Boston, overdraw from my bank account or something. But for now, I’m on cloud-freakin-nine!

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