Chocolate Brownie Cookies with White Chocolate Chips & Salted Pecans

Technology has kind of been blowing my mind recently. There are just too many new and crazy things coming out, I am starting to feel like it’s a little too much. What ever happened to hanging out with your friends without tv/computer/phone being involved. (But I’m not one to talk, I sleep with my phone under my pillow. Man, i’m sure that’s just awful for my brain…) I can only imagine what my 91 year old grandma thinks about Google’s “Project Glass” augmented reality glasses.

So when I was reading through Joy’s cookbook and saw this recipe and noticed how it required nothing but some bowls and a whisk, I just smiled.

I love my KitchenAid mixer like it is my child, don’t get me wrong, but sometimes it is nice to just feel what you are doing. Whisking eggs into chocolate. Folding the flour and chocolate mixture together. These are things that are so simple but provide such a strange sense of satisfaction when you do it by hand.

See, nothing fancy, no microwave! A bowl over a pot, there you have it ladies and gentleman – the best way to melt chocolate. I’m not a fan of melting chocolate in the microwave. You don’t have any control and it always comes out funky. Try this next time, it really does not require any extra effort! I swear!

Fun fact: that bowl gets really hot! I can’t even tell you how many times I have melted chocolate on the stove and have reached for the bowl and burned my hand. Oven mit is necessary!

Lots of recipes call for you to “fold” together ingredients. Up until 2 years ago, I just thought folding was a new word that they used instead of saying mix because mixing was getting overused. Wrong. Folding means gentle! You take your spatula and start in the center and fold together the ingredients just until they’re combined. Over-mixing is a serious thing people. No joke.

I made these cookies twice in one week, and each time they were eaten up within 24 hours. I guess that is a good thing, but come on! I want to eat these cookies for days they’re that good. They are the perfect brownie/cookie compromise, and they only take 11 minutes in the oven. I don’t think this could get any better?

Enjoy,

Madeline

Triple Lemon Loaf

This loaf of lemony goodness has converted me to the brighter side.

Before this lovely recipe I was always a little “eh” about lemon recipes. Sometimes it was really refreshing, sure, like after a hot day in the summer a nice lemon sorbet would be fabulous! But when it really came down to it, chocolate was always the answer. Always.

“Do you want the lemon meringue pie or the brownie covered in caramel and pecans?”

Stupid question. Brownie. Done.

But this cake/loaf/bread, whatever you want to call it, is exceptional. Maybe it is because there is lemon in the cake, then a lemon syrup is poured over it, and then to top it off a lemon glaze. So yeah, there is a lot of lemon, but if you’re going to go for lemon you may as well go hard!

The cake is so moist and packs a little punch in your first bite, but not over powering, it’s just the right amount.

It rained all day today with lightening and thunder so bad that the house vibrated. So this cake was a nice reminder that summer is almost here, and that this crazy weather is just a mini speed bump.

If you’re going to bake this in a decorative loaf pan, beware! I oiled that thing up like it was nobody’s business, but the top of it still stuck in there!

Luckily, the second one came out perfectly! Lesson learned: decorative pans just aren’t worth the grief for this.

Tip: Wait 30 minutes for the cake to cool because when you pour that glaze on it’s going to soak into a warm cake, like mine did. I really wanted to wait, I really did. It would have looked so pretty if I had waited. But I couldn’t…I’m sorry.

This recipe is from the cookbook Baked: New Frontiers in Baking written by Matt Lewis and Renato Poliafito who run a bakery, called Baked, in good ole’ Brooklyn.

Enjoy,

Madeline

{Can I Have} S’mores Cupcakes

The kitchen for me is a really sacred place. When I’m happy, when I’m sad, when I’m angry – that is where I go. Everything melts away and all I think about is what is happening in front of me. Chopping chocolate and whipping egg whites is like meditating. My mind literally can not go to those sad places when the mixer is on high, and my eyes are fixated on the egg whites turning from clear and slippery to glossy white clouds.

Everyone has that release. This is mine.

My all time favorite theme of desserts has to be anything s’mores related. So far I’ve made S’mores Pudding and S’mores Bars, but let me tell you my friends, this is only the beginning. Endless possibilities I tell you, endless.

S’mores are my comfort food. They take me back to a time when my friends would come over and we’d roast s’mores in the backyard and take silly pictures that should not exist, but they do. Things haven’t changed too much in the taking silly pictures category, but I don’t see many friends coming over for a good marshmallow roasting. Maybe that will change this summer. You’re all invited for margaritas, tacos and sunshine during the day and s’mores and cuddling by the fire in the evening.  Seriously, can we do this?

Due to the fact that I rely so heavily on the kitchen being my comforting tool, I really needed these cupcakes to turn out amazing, and thank the baking gods because they were. I ate three that evening, and wanted three more afterwards but my tummy was too full. If only one thing inspires you to go and bake off of this blog, I hope it might be these, and that you’ll invite me over for one.

The frosting, which is hardly a frosting but more of a meringue, is made with 8 egg whites. I know that seems like a lot of egg whites, but it’s an important part of the cupcake and don’t worry about using raw egg whites, they’re heated with the sugar on the stove.

I know that they make egg whites in a jug, which probably would be really convenient when making these, but I don’t suggest them. Why you ask? Because they come in a jug. Just stop it right now. Go buy a carton of eggs and then use the remaining egg yolks to make a really deliciously rich and creamy ice cream! The recipes I have posted here use 6 egg yolks, but you can most definitely add the remaining 2, it will just make it even better.

Note: If you’re going to make ice cream with the remaining egg yolks, but not right away, cover the yolks with plastic wrap and stick them in the fridge. As long as they don’t look dehydrated and you cover them properly you can use them within the next 2 days.

We did a little easter egg hunt for my niece, she was too cute. The girl loves a good chunk of chocolate too. Definitely fits into the family perfectly.

Enjoy,

Madeline

Homemade Peanut Butter Dog Treats

I like making people happy with desserts, if you haven’t figured that out already. Friends, family, co workers, strangers – it doesn’t matter. Nothing makes me happier than hearing the “mmmms” and seeing the grins on their faces after eating a cooking/cupcake/other sugar laced deliciousness.

Sometimes it feels good to make the furry friends happy too, like these guys!

And they even let me share some with this little cutie & a few other friends.

Seriously, those puppy dog eyes are too precious.

I was at Sur La Table the other day wanting to buy everything in site, as usual, and saw this adorable little fire hydrant cookie cutter! I figured making fire hydrant sugar cookies without being friends/knowing a fire fighter seemed kind of strange, so dog treats it was!

Also, I feel kind of bad for the little guys who sit by my feet as I bake, hoping that I will drop scraps of deliciousness on the floor for them. Usually I do, but unfortunately for them I make a lot of chocolate things so you’ll generally find me yelling “DON’T EAT THAT!” and dodging to grab it before they slurp it up. So here you go my little pups, homemade peanut butter doggy treats!

Oh, and did I mention that they’re made with whole wheat flour? Healthier than the cookies I make for humans, I know, crazy. I’m not going to lie, I tried a tiny bit of these cookies. I mean come on, I had to…right? Note to future self: Don’t try dog treats. They’re not yummy for humans, but the dogs sure did like them! 🙂

Enjoy,

Madeline & los perros