Sunday, January 22, 2017

Classic Fudge Brownies

While perusing one of my favorite cookbooks Simply Sensational Cookies by Nancy Baggett I came across a "classic" brownie recipe that looked easy, fudgy and delicious, my three criteria for the perfect brownie.

Classic Fudge Brownies

10 Tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into chunks
3 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped
11/2 cups granulated sugar
1/4 good quality cocoa powder, I use Valrhona Cocoa Powdersifted after measuring if lumpy
1/2 tsp salt
3 large eggs room temperature
2 Tablespoons water
3/4 cup all purpose flour

Preheat oven to 350 and position the rack in the center of the oven. Line an 8 inch baking pan with aluminum foil and spray with cooking spray.

In a large microwave safe bowl, with the microwave on 50% power, melt the butter and the chocolate together, stir at 30 second intervals, until the mixture is just melted.  Or you can melt the butter and the chocolate in a saucepan over low heat, stirring constantly until the chocolate and butter are melted and smooth.

Remove bowl from microwave and stir in the sugar, cocoa powder and salt until smooth. Then add the eggs and 2 tablespoons of water and stir vigorously until the sugar is dissolved and well blended. Add the flour and stir until the batter is shiny. Pour into prepared pan and smooth the top.

Bake for 20-25 minutes or until the edges are just pulling away from the pan and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out mostly clean, with the bottom still a little mouse and gooey.

Cool on wire rack, then refrigerate for 45 minutes so they are easier to cut. Enjoy

These brownies are perfect! Moist, fudgy, chocolaty and fabulous. I think they would make a great addition to a party platter for the Superbowl.

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Irish Hot Chocolate

  • Winter to me means hot chocolate, for breakfast, lunch, snack and sometimes even dinner and dessert. It is the perfect beverage for taking along skating, sipping on a snow day or a weekend morning. 

  • A cup of hot chocolate brings back so many happy memories of my mom waiting for my siblings and I to trudge home after a day of sledding or even just 20 minutes out frolicking in the snow. She would be stirring a pot of her special cocoa on the stove ready to ladle it out. This scrumptious Irish hot chocolate is the perfect nightcap after a long winter day. 

  • Irish Hot Chocolate
Recipe from Bourbon and Honey

  • Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup water
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 oz semi sweet chocolate, chopped
  • Pinch fine sea salt
  • 1teaspoonVanilla Extract
  • 2 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 3 tablespoons Irish whiskey or Bourbon

In a medium saucepan, bring water to a boil over medium heat. Reduce heat to low and whisk in brown sugar, cocoa powder, chocolate, salt and vanilla, just until brown sugar is dissolved and chocolate is melted. Do not let the mixture simmer. 

Whisk in milk. Continue cooking until mixture is steamy and just beginning to simmer, about 3 to 4 minutes. Stir in whiskey. Serve in your Chocolate PotTop with marshmallows or whipped cream. Serve and enjoy!

If you have never made homemade marshmallows I highly recommend it, they are easy to make and delicious! I used this RECIPE,

Monday, January 9, 2017

Fudgy Chocolate Brownies

Fudgy Chocolate Brownies

1 cup cake flour or 3/4 all-purpose flour
1/4 cup all natural unsweetened cocoa powder 
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
11/2 tablespoons finely ground espresso coffee beans
3 ounces unsweetened chocolate, finely chopped
3/4 cup (11/2 sticks) unsalted butter at room temperature
11/2 cups granulated sugar
3 large eggs. beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla extract


Preheat over to 350 degrees. Line an 8" baking pan with tin foil and then spray with cooking spray, allow foil to overhang the edges so that you can life out the brownies later. 

In a small bowl  sift together the flour, cocoa, salt and baking powder. Stir in the ground coffee and set aside. 

Fill a medium saucepan one-third filled with water and bring to a simmer. Place the chocolate and butter in a large heatproof bowl that will fit snugly on the top of the pan without touching the water. Turn the heat to low and melt the chocolate and butter stirring frequently until completely melted and smooth. Remove the bowl from the heat and let cool a little, then stir in the sugar until combined. Whisk in the eggs and vanilla until fully incorporated. Then fold in the flour mixture until just combined, do not over-mix. 

Pour into prepared pan and bake for 30-35 minutes. A crust will form on the top and the center is still somewhat gooey. Cool completely on a wire rack, then refrigerate for 2 hours before serving. Cut into  squares and enjoy. 

Saturday, December 24, 2016

Decadent Spiced Bourbon Hot Chocolate

Tis' the season to be jolly...I don't know about you but with Christmas just a few days away I am feeling a little stressed. I cannot wait until until I have the last of my tasks finished and I can sit down and relax with a drink and a book and wait for Christmas. 

With the winter chill roaring across the country hot chocolate is going to be my drink of choice for the coming week. I decided to combine a few of mine and my husbands favorite ingredients to make a decadent, spiced and spiked hot chocolate. Cinnamon and chocolate are a perfect combination, add a shot of two of bourbon and I think you have a drink that everyone can enjoy. Obviously if you are serving kids leave out the bourbon. 

Decadent Spiced Bourbon Hot Chocolate 

11/2 cups whole milk
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
2 tablespoons powdered sugar or to taste
8 oz. 72% chocolate chopped
2 ounces of Bourbon whiskey

Garnish with whipped cream

In a saucepan over medium heat add the cream, milk, cinnamon and powdered sugar, whisk to combine. When bubbles form around the edges turn the heat to low and whisk in the chopped chocolate until melted and incorporated. Add the bourbon and mix to combine. Pour into cups and garnish with whipped cream.

Note: If you are lucky enough to live in an area that Drizly covers you can order your achoo online and have it delivered to your door! They are still growing and have a limited delivery area. Check out their site for more details.

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Magic Bars or Hello Dolly Bars or 7 Layer Bars

Bar cookies are a favorite of mine because you basically put everything in the pan, bake it and you are finished. This particular bar is known by several names, 7 layer bars, Hello Dolly Bars or even Magic bars. They also happen to be the most Pinned recipe on Pinterest from this blog even after all these years!

I make these Magic Bars or to some Hello Dolly Bars or even 7 Layer bars,all the time! They are my sisters favorite so every time I see her I make a huge batch for her. They are the perfect treat warm with ice cream or completely cooled and served at a Christmas party or in cookie trays. Frankly you could give and entire try of these and I think your recipients would love it!

The recipe I use is adapted from Eagle Brand Milk I am sure there are many others but this is the one I always use. 

Magic Bars

1/2 cup melted butter

11/2 cups of graham cracker crumbs

1 cup of butter scotch chips

11/2 cups of coconut

Heat oven to 350. Melt butter and pour into a 9x13 pan. Mix in graham cracker crumbs. Pour condensed milk over the crumbs and then layer the remaining ingredients evenly. Bake for 25 minutes. Cool and cut!

Variations: You can add walnuts, or a combination of peanut butter chips and chocolate chips, or perhaps a medley of chocolate chips, including white, milk and dark, or perhaps dried cherries or cranberries and white or dark chocolate.

I personally like them the way I made them but I am certainly open to trying new things.

I hope you enjoy your day! If you make these bars and have a great variation, please leave it in the comment section, I would love to try it.

Happy Holidays!

Saturday, December 10, 2016

The Best Chocolate Cheesecake

The holidays are a great time to try new things or to bring out your favorite recipes. I have been making this chocolate cheesecake for years and the reason is because it is the best recipe I have found. This cheesecake is rich and decadent and the perfect dessert to serve at the holidays! 

The Best Chocolate Cheesecake
18 Oreo cookies finely ground
2 tbsp. butter, melted
3 packages, 8oz. each. Philadelphia cream cheese, room temperature
1 cup sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
8 oz semis-sweet chocolate. melted and cooled
3 eggs, room temperature

Preheat oven to 325. Place a 9 x 13 inch baking pan filled with water on the lower shelf. In a small bowl melt butter, then add the cookie crumbs and press into the bottom of a 9 inch spring form pan. Bake 10 minutes then remove from oven to cool. 

Beat cream cheese, sugar and vanilla with an electric mixer until blended and smooth. Then add chocolate and mix well. Add the eggs one at a time, mix on low until just blended. Then pour over the crust. 

Place pan on the shelf above the pan of water. Bake for 45-55 minutes or until the center is almost done. Then turn off oven and open the door an inch. Let cheesecake cool for 1 house and then remove from oven and run a knife around the edge to loosen the cake. Cool completely before removing the rim. Refrigerate for 4 hours or over night.