Salted-Caramel Chocolate Mocha Brown Butter Cookies

Wow, that name is a mouthful I know. Well these cookies fully are too. My new favorite cookie-how can they not be amazing if they combine everything wonderful?!

I made a batch of these for my girlfriends for a treat yesterday and they were gone almost instantly. Granted as returning college students now on a break for summer we have all learned to truly appreciate one (or a few hehe) fresh baked cookies. 

Image

This recipe is a little bit more complex than ones average cookie recipe because it deals with browning the butter. However, this easy culiary technique is good to now and is useful in many sauces, and bold flavorful dishes because it really enhances the flavor and adds a richer color to the cookie. 

Coffee is also often used in baking to enhance flavor however this is the first recipe I have made using just a premade cafe mix. I’m so excited and amazed I hadn’t thought of this before. This idea opens my recipe world! I used the “International Cafe Hazelnut mix” They have many other flavors with sound great too. 


Ingredients:

  • 2 sticks (1 cup) salted butter
  • 1 1/4 cups packed dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large egg
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons instant coffee granules or mocha mix
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1&1/2 cup of chopped chocolate caramel bits 

or

  • 3/4 cup caramel bits
  • 3/4 cup Nestle Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chunks

Coarse sea salt for sprinkling


 

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

2. Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Once the butter starts to foam, begin whisking constantly. When the butter turns brown, fragrant, and you see little brown bits at the bottom of the pan, immediately remove from heat and and transfer to a large mixing bowl. Set aside to cool.

3. Meanwhile, whisk together the flour, coffee, baking soda, and salt in a bowl and set aside.

4. With an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugars until well combined, about 3-5 minutes.

5. Add the egg, yolk, and vanilla until well combined.

6. Add the dry ingredients and mix on low-speed just until combined. Add the caramels and chocolate chunks and stir until just combined.

7. Use a medium  cookie scoop to place dough on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. The dough will be a little wetter than some doughs and if you want to reduce the spreading you can chill the dough for 30 min before baking

8. Bake at 350 for 10 minutes until edges just start to turn golden brown. Sprinkle with sea salt. Cool on a wire rack.

Image

Enjoy 
Happy Summer 🙂

Advertisements

Grandma’s Best Chocolate Chip Cookies

Nothing beats a good chocolate chip cookie.. except a great chocolate chip cookie. The right amount of soft and crisp, balance or chocolate and and sugar is hard to come by. But of course, my grandma, one of the greatest bakers I know has almost perfected the recipe. She used just shortening though, and as a butter lover I thought it was wrong to completely leave it out of any cookie recipe, so I adapted it slightly.  This is my go to recipe for the classic comfort food chocolate chip cookie. The smell of these freshly baked cookies is simply irresistible as, for the moment I took them out of the oven I had to have one with some milk. I added walnuts but they can easily be left out or replaced with butterscotch chips, cashews, ect.

IMG_1926[1]

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup shortening
  • 1/4 cup butter softened
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 egg
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 cup chocolate chips (or more)
  • 1/2 cup walnuts (optional)

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 350 F
  • Sift Flour, salt, and baking soda
  • In a seperate bowl cream shortening, butter, and sugars
  • Beat in vanilla and egg
  • Add the sifted dry ingredients
  • Stir in nuts and chocolate chips
  • Roll into balls and bake on greased cookie sheet or parchment paper for about 8 minutes

Who’d have thought so much happiness and comfort could come from a simple cookie… even more reason to have more than just one!
Happy Summer

Whole Wheat Strawberry Scones

Summer means fresh fruit, specifically fresh strawberries. After making several fresh strawberry desserts including strawberry tart and strawberry shorkcake my the remaining strawberries were not quite as good as they were initially. So I figured I would bake them into some scones and wanted to have fun adapting a classic scone recipe to add whole wheat and cut down on some of the fat and sugar while still keeping the classic scone taste. In they end they were perfect! I drizzled them with a bit of white chocolate (so much for decreasing the sugar) and had one with a bit of almond butter too!

IMG_1901[1]

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 3 Tbs. sugar
  • 2 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. nutmeg
  • 2 Tbs. butter
  • 2 Tbs. applesauce
  • 1 egg
  • 3-5 Tbs. Milk (I used 2% anything from skim to heavy cream will work)
  • 1/2 cup strawberries (or any fruit)
  • beaten egg for coating the top and sugar

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 400 F
  • Combine flours, sugar, baking powder, salt, and nutmeg.
  • Cut in butter and applesauce until mixture resembles fine crumbs
  • Stir in egg
  • Gradually add milk 1 Tbs. at a time until dough is just moist enough to leave side of bowl -should still be somewhat crumbly
  • Add in strawberries
  • Put dough on floured surface and roll into a circle about 1/2″ thick
  • Cut into 8 (or 12) pieces
  • Brush top with egg and sprinkle with a bit of sugar
  • Bake for about 14-19 minutes or until golden brown on top
  • Immediately remove from cookie sheet
  • Drizzle top with melted white chocolate or serve with butter, peanut butter, nutella (my favorite), lemon curd, really anything

Ginger Spice (Molasses) Cookies

I don’t think hearty spices are just for the holiday season. I think gingerbread, pumpkin, nutmeg, and cinnamon should be enjoyed all year long! These were inspired by my Grandma Marjorie’s perfect “Grannysnap Cookies.” They have always been my favorite cookie. The perfect amount of spice, not to chewy not to hard, and goes splendidly with milk. I couldn’t find her originally recipe which must have some other secret than the recipe I came up with because these don’t quite compare with hers. But I still think these are the right blend of spices. They are still splendid with tea and would probably be equally as good with some lemon glaze icing if I wasn’t “lemoned-out” at the moment.
Image

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 2 teaspoons freshly grated ginger or ginger spread
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar- plus more for rolling the dough in
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar, loosely packed
  • 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/4 cup molasses

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, ginger and salt.
  3. With a mixer, beat butter and sugar until combined.
  4. Beat in egg and then molasses
  5.  Gradually mix in dry ingredients until a dough forms.
  6. Pinch off and roll dough into balls about 1 Tbs. in size
  7. Roll balls in reserved sugar to coat.
  8. Arrange balls on baking sheets- 2-3 inches apart. Bake until edges of cookies are just firm, 10 to 15 minutes Cool 1 minute on baking sheets; transfer to racks to cool completely.
Image

Rolling the dough in cinnamon sugar

ImageCookie for the Winter season good at any time of the year… Happy Summer!

Iced Lemon Cookies

We still had a good 10 ten lemons after I made lemon cake so I thought I could use a few more up in some lemon cookies. I was inspired by my Grandma Dot, who I am planning on sending these to, and added some ginger to the dough in her honor 🙂 These are just the right amount of lemon, with a light sweet glaze, and go quite well with tea. 

Image

Ingredients: 

  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 Tbs lemon zest
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated ginger (optional)
  • a dash of Limoncello (optional)

For the glaze icing:

  • 1 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 4-5 Tbs. fresh lemon juice

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Combine flour, baking powder, and salt in a small bowl. Whisk and set aside.
  3. In a small bowl, add granulated sugar and lemon zest. Rub the sugar and lemon zest together with your fingers, until fragrant.
  4. Beat butter and sugar/lemon mixture together until light and fluffy. Beat in egg and vanilla, ginger, and Limoncello. Mix until smooth.
  5. Slowly beat in flour mixture on low speed until blended. Drop dough by tablespoon onto prepared baking sheets, spacing 2 inches apart. Gently flatten dough with the palm of your hand.
  6. Bake for 11-13 minutes or until cookies are just set and slightly golden brown. Move to cooling racks and allow to cool completely.
  7. In a medium bowl, whisk together powdered sugar and lemon juice. Dip each cookie top into the lemon glaze. Let cookies sit until icing has set.

These cookies travel well and are so cute! When life hands you lemons make the perfect melt in your mouth lemon cookies to have with some tea 🙂 Happy Summer

Image

Image

 

The Ultimate Lemon Pound Cake

My dad recently purchased the Costco pack of lemons- with only 3 of us in the house and no plan for the lemons I don’t really know what he was thinking…but I figured I could make use of them for I don’t know when else there would be 15 lemons laying around the house.
In my youth I lived in Italy and we had 2 huge lemon trees in our yard. Naturally us kids developed a love for homemade lemonade, and my mother a love for homemade Limoncello- we always manage to have some hidden around the house. I figured I would add this to the recipe to tang up the flavor a bit. When making the Ultimate Lemon Cake I knew I would need lots of lemon zest and juice to really get that wonderful lemon punch. This cake did not disappoint me from the name; it was perfectly moist, lemony, flavorful, overall just the ultimate lemon cake. I had to eat a piece… or two… instantly!
IMG_1728[1]

Ingredients

For the cake:
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup vanilla Greek yogurt – (Chobani Lemon would make it extra lemony but I used Greek God’s Honey Vanilla Yogurt)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ¼ cup canola oil
  • zest of 2 lemons
  • 1 Tbs Limoncello
  • 4 Tbs lemon juice
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • ¼ tsp salt
For the glaze:
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 Tbs Limoncello
  • 2-4 Tbs Lemon Juice (adjust as necessary)
  • 1 Tbs lemon zest

For the whipped cream topping (optional):

  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup yogurt (Chobani Lemon is best)
  • 1 Tbs lemon juice

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, yogurt, sugar, oil, lemon zest, Limoncello, and lemon juice.
  3.   In another bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, stirring just until incorporated, 15-20 stirs, being careful not to over mix.
  4.  Spray an 8.5 x 4.5-inch loaf pan with cooking spray.  Pour the batter into the pan.  Bake about 40 minutes for the larger loaf pan or until a tester comes out clean and the top of the cake is golden. Cool the cake in the pan for about 5 minutes.  Remove from pans and continue cooling on a wire rack.
  5. When the cake is cool, whisk the powdered sugar with Limoncello and lemon juice in a small bowl until smooth.  Drizzle the glaze over the cake
  6. For the whipped cream whip the heavy whipping cream, sugar, and lemon juice until soft peaks are formed then fold in yogurt.

The family was quite happy with this cake. It is easy to do, fairly light for a pound cake, and perfect summer. Would be ideal at a picknik or bbq! I of course had the whipped cream and even a bit of vanilla ice cream on mine 🙂

Happy Summer

IMG_1734[1]