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Inspiration for wholesome weeknight & weekend cooking.

Posts tagged ‘chocolate’

This is a tasty oatmeal chocolate chip cookie that’s simple to make.  It’s a nice combination of crunchy, chewy, sweet and salty.  If you prefer not to use the vegetable shortening, you can substitute with coconut oil.  Also, instead of bittersweet chocolate, you can use any chocolate you prefer (I use bittersweet or dark chocolate).  Enjoy!

Salted Oatmeal Cookies with Dark Chocolate

Recipe from Real Simple Magazine.

Salted Oatmeal Cookies with Dark Chocolate

Makes about 2 dozen cookies.

Ingredients:

cups old-fashioned rolled oats (not quick-cooking)

cup all-purpose flour, spooned and leveled

3/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

teaspoons flaky sea salt (such as Maldon)

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature

tablespoons vegetable shortening

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup packed light brown sugar

large egg

teaspoon pure vanilla extract

ounces bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped

Directions:

  1. Heat oven to 375° F with the rack in the upper and lower thirds. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment.
  2. Combine the oats, flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and 1 teaspoon of the salt in a medium bowl; set aside.
  3. Beat the butter, shortening, granulated sugar, and brown sugar with an electric mixer on medium-high speed until lightly and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes. Beat in the egg and vanilla. Reduce the mixer speed to low and gradually add the flour mixture, mixing just until combined (do not over mix). Stir in the chocolate.
  4. Drop heaping tablespoonfuls of the dough onto the prepared baking sheets, spacing them 2 inches apart. Sprinkle with the remaining 1 teaspoon of salt.
  5. Bake, rotating the pans halfway through, until lightly brown around the edges, about 10 to 12 minutes. Cool slightly on the baking sheets, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
  6. Storage suggestion: Keep the cookies at room temperature in an airtight container for up to 5 days.

 

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This is a wonderful tasting, moist and healthy muffin that you can feel good about giving to your kids or enjoying as an afternoon snack.  After tasting these, you won’t believe there isn’t any white flour, sugar, butter or vegetable oil in them.  They truly taste decadent — and they’re not!  Note: if you don’t have the wheat germ or flax, substitute with oats and the muffins will turn out fine!

Healthy Dark Chocolate Zucchini Muffins

Recipe adapted from the blog Baking Adventures in a Messy Kitchen.

Healthy Dark Chocolate Zucchini Muffins

Ingredients:

2 cups grated zucchini
1/3 cup honey
1/4 cup molasses
1/4 cup coconut oil, softened or melted
2 large eggs
1 banana , well mashed
3/4 cup yogurt (vanilla or plain; Greek or non-fat or low fat)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/3 cups whole wheat white flour
1/3 cup toasted wheat germ
1/4 cup ground flaxseed or meal
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup (heaping) dark chocolate mini chunks (Whole Foods private label sells these in a bag)

Directions:

To prepare, grate the zucchini, using paper towels to squeeze out any excess moisture, and mash the banana.

Heat the oven to 375 degrees. Grease mini muffin tray, planning for 45-50 mini muffins.

Using a stand mixer, beat together the zucchini, honey, molasses, coconut oil, eggs, banana, yogurt, and vanilla until well mixed.

In a separate bowl, combine the flour, wheat germ, flax seed, cocoa powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt with a whisk.

Add the flour mixture to the stand mixer incrementally, beating on low speed, stopping as soon as the flour is fully incorporated.

Remove the bowl from the stand and fold in the dark chocolate mini chunks.

Scoop the batter into mini muffin cups (filling just over 3/4 full), and bake them in the oven for approximately 13 minutes. Let sit in the pan for a few more minutes, then move to a wire rack to cool completely.

Try to eat just one. Really. Try.

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I know what you’re thinking.  “You really think I’m going to take the time to brown butter for some homemade cookies?”  I know it seems like one more step, but it’s worth it!  These cookies are amazing!  Crunchy, nutty, buttery, salty, sweet, and wholesome.  What I do as a time-saver is I make a double batch, roll up all of the cookie dough balls, and freeze half in a freezer ziplock bag.  The balls won’t stick to each other and you’ll have them ready to go for when you need a fresh, baked dessert.  Just bring them to room temperature and follow the same baking directions … and it’s like you’ve just been slaving away on them!  Note: I use dark chocolate chunks because I prefer dark chocolate.

 

Brown Butter Oatmeal Chunk Cookies

Recipe from the blog How Sweet It Is.

Brown Butter Oatmeal Chunk Cookies

Makes about 15-18 cookies.

Ingredients:

1/2 cup unsalted butter

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup loosely packed brown sugar

1 large egg

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour

3/4 cups rolled oats

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon

1 cup chocolate chunks

optional: 1- 2 tablespoons milk, if dough is crumbly

Directions:

Heat a small saucepan over medium-low heat and add butter. Whisking constantly, cook butter until bubbly and until small brown bits appear on the bottom of the pan – about 5-6 minutes. Watch closely and immediately remove the butter from the heat, whisking for an additional 30 seconds or so. Set aside and let cool COMPLETELY. Note: It does not need to solidify at all, but it should not be warm to the touch.

In a bowl, combine flour, salt, baking powder, oats and cinnamon, mixing, then set aside.

Once butter has cooled, add to a large bowl. Whisk in sugars, stirring until smooth. Add in egg and vanilla, whisking until smooth once again. Slowly begin to stir in dry ingredients, using your hands if necessary (I always do) to bring dough together. If you find that the dough still won’t come together, add in milk 1 tablespoon at a time (I rarely have to do this.) Fold in chocolate chips, distributing them evenly. Refrigerate dough for 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Using an ice cream scoop or your hands, form dough into 1 1/2 inch balls. Place about 2 inches apart on a nonstick baking sheet, then bake for 10-12 minutes, or until bottoms and edges are golden. Let cool before serving.

 

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This is hands-down my favorite chocolate cake recipe.  It’s rich and moist and delicious.  Apparently, the cake is better when made the day before (so I’ve always done that).  The chocolate frosting is delicious too (although not pictured below).  This recipe makes two 8 inch round cakes, which you can stack with a layer of frosting in between – or one single layer rectangular cake.  Enjoy!

Mom's Chocolate Cake

Recipe from Food & Wine (contributed by Marcia Kiesel.)

Mom’s Chocolate Cake

This is a real old-fashioned American chocolate layer cake. It’s very moist, very chocolatey, a snap to make and best baked the day before serving. Marcia Kiesel acquired the recipe from her friend Joyce Cole, who got it from her mother.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 4 ounces unsweetened chocolate
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
Directions:
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°. Butter and flour two 8-by-1 1/2-inch round cake pans. Line the bottoms with wax paper. In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt; set aside.
  2. In a medium saucepan, combine the sugar with 2 cups of water. Bring to a boil over high heat and stir until the sugar dissolves; then pour into a large bowl. Add the chocolate and butter and let sit, stirring occasionally, until melted and slightly cooled. Stir in the vanilla.
  3. Beat the eggs into the chocolate mixture at medium speed until combined. Add the dry ingredients all at once and beat at medium speed until smooth. Divide the batter evenly between the prepared pans and bake for about 25 minutes, or until the top springs back when pressed lightly and a cake tester comes out clean. Cool the cakes in their pans for about 25 minutes, then invert onto a rack to cool completely.
  4. Set one cake, right-side up, on a serving platter. Using a metal spatula, spread one-third of the Chocolate Frosting evenly over the cake. Top with the second cake and frost the top and sides with the remaining frosting.

Chocolate Frosting recipe also from Food & Wine (contributed by Marcia Kiesel.)
Servings: Makes about 3 1/2 cups.

The inspiration for this frosting technique comes from dessert maven Maida Heatter’s Book of Great Chocolate Desserts (Alfred A. Knopf).

Ingredients:

1 1/3 cups heavy cream

1 1/2 cups sugar

6 ounces unsweetened chocolate

1 stick (4 ounces) plus 2 tablespoons unsalted butter

1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Pinch of salt

Directions:

  1. In a medium saucepan, bring the cream and sugar to a boil over moderately high heat. Reduce the heat to low and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the liquid reduces slightly, about 6 minutes. Pour the mixture into a medium bowl and add the chocolate, butter, vanilla and salt. Let stand, stirring occasionally, until the chocolate and butter are melted.
  2. Set the bowl in a larger bowl of ice water. Using a hand-held electric mixer, beat the frosting on medium speed, scraping the sides occasionally with a rubber spatula, until thick and glossy, about 5 minutes. Use at once.
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Tate’s chocolate chip cookies have always been my favorite store bought cookies (and they’re now pretty widely distributed – you can find them at Whole Foods and major grocery stores).  They have nicely shared their wonderful recipe so we can make them at home!  I think it’s the perfect chocolate chip cookie – thin, chewy yet crispy, salty and buttery…  You can cook them anywhere from 8-12 minutes (8 minutes make chewy cookies, 12 minutes make crispy cookies).  I like to cook them for 10 minutes.  Try them with dark chocolate chips too sometime.  Enjoy!

Tate's Choc Chip Cookie

Recipe adapted from Tate’s Bake Shop and posted on Gwyneth Paltrow’s blog Goop.

Tate’s Chocolate Chip Cookies

Makes about 40 cookies.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups unbleached, all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) lightly salted butter, at room temperature
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup dark brown sugar, firmly packed
  • 1 teaspoon water
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 2 cups semisweet chocolate chips (Nestlé can’t really be beat)

Preparation:

1. Preheat the oven to 350º.

2. Whisk the flour, soda and salt together in a bowl.

3. In another large bowl, mix the butter with a wooden spoon to lighten it a bit and then mix in the sugars.

4. Add the water, vanilla and eggs to the butter mixture.

5. Stir in the flour mixture until just combined and then fold in the chocolate chips.

6. Using two soup spoons, drop the cookies 2″ apart onto two nonstick or greased cookie sheets.

7. Bake for 8 minutes, rotating the sheets after 4 minutes.

8. Remove the cookies to a wire rack to cool, and repeat the process with the rest of the batter.

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When I came across Katharine Hepburn’s family recipe for brownies in Gourmet Magazine, my curiosity was piqued.  Katharine Hepburn — wouldn’t you think she would hold something to the highest standards and be associated with something very classic, old-fashioned, and American as a delicious homemade brownie?  I did…  Indeed, this is the best brownie recipe I’ve tried. You can really taste the butter, salt, chocolate and nuts in each bite and they are nice and moist in the middle yet crispy on the top.  Delicious!  The recipe only makes 9 brownies, and that’s just not going to be enough (trust me), so you might want to double the recipe.  Note:  I thought 1/2 cup chopped walnuts was plenty.

Brownie

Recipe from Gourmet Magazine.

Katharine Hepburn’s Brownies

Makes 9 brownies.

Ingredients

  • 1 stick (8 tablespoons) butter
  • 2 squares unsweetened chocolate (2 ounces)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts (optional)

Preparation

1. Melt together 1 stick butter and 2 squares unsweetened chocolate and take the saucepan off the heat.

2. Stir in 1 cup sugar, add 2 eggs and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, and beat the mixture well.

3. Stir in 1/4 cup all-purpose flour and 1/4 teaspoon salt. (In the original recipe, 1 cup chopped walnuts is added here as well.)

4. Bake the brownies in a buttered and floured 8-inch-square pan at 325°F for about 40 minutes.

You can cut these brownies into squares, once they have cooled, and eat them out of the pan, but it is so much nicer to pile them on a fancy plate, from which people are going to eat them with their hands anyway. If you want to smarten up your act you can put a square of brownie on a plate with a little blob of créme fraîche and a scattering of shaved chocolate.

Original source: “A Harried Cook’s Guide to Some Fast Food” by Laurie Colwin

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