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almond joy bars plated

Years ago, my mom used to make this wonderful coconut candy dipped in chocolate. It took a lot of work and the chocolate contained paraffin wax. Needless to say, the few times I attempted to make the candy, I left out the wax and found the whole process to be both traumatic and awful.

I did keep the recipe for the filling though.

After seeing various recipes for Almond Joy Bars on Pinterest, I decided to make up my own, using the filling from the dipped candy.

These bars were relatively simple to put together. You do need to either keep them in the fridge or the freezer, though. The centers are sticky and need to be kept chilled.

If you like coconut, almonds and chocolate, you will definitely love these!

almond joy bar ingredients

Ingredients

Combine filling ingredients. Cover with plastic wrap and freeze until firm.

Combine filling ingredients. Cover with plastic wrap and freeze until firm.

Mix crust ingredients until crumbly. Press into greased (or foil-lined pan) and bake until set.

Cool crust completely before adding filling.
Cool crust completely before adding filling.
When crust is cool, spoon on filling. It will be sticky, so work fast while it is cold. Spread out evenly over crust.

When crust is cool, spoon on filling. It will be sticky, so work fast while it is cold. Spread out evenly over crust.

Nuke chips, butter and cream in 20-30 second bursts until chips are melted. Mix well.

Nuke chips, butter and cream in 20-30 second bursts until chips are melted. Mix well.

Spoon over filling and spread out evenly.

Spoon over filling and spread out evenly.

Top with more sliced almonds then freeze until firm. Cut into bars and indulge!

Top with more sliced almonds then freeze until firm. Cut into bars and indulge!

Almond Joy Bars

Crust:

1 cup flour

1/2 cup sweetened shredded coconut

2 tbsp. sugar

6 tbsp. butter

Filling:

1 can condensed milk

1 cup sliced almonds

1 cup sweetened shredded coconut

1 1/2 sticks of butter

3 cups powdered sugar

Topping:

1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

2 tbsp. butter

1/3 cup heavy cream

1/4 cup sliced almonds

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Crust – Beat softened butter then add in flour, sugar and coconut. Mixture will be crumbly.  Press into greased baking dish (if you are lazy like me, line it with foil then spray with non-stick spray. It makes it easy to lift out and cut bars when finished). Bake for about 6-8 minutes, until just set. Remove from oven and cool completely.

Filling – Mix condensed milk, almonds, coconut, butter and sugar until well mixed. Freeze until firm. When crust is cool, spoon filling over the top and spread out to smooth.

Topping – In a microwave safe bowl, mix chips, butter and cream. In 20-30 second intervals, cook until chocolate melts and cream and butter are fully combined. Spread over the top of the filling and sprinkle with nuts. Put in the freezer until firm then take out and cut into bars.

Keep refrigerated or in the freezer until ready to serve (if you feel like sharing!).

These are rich, but oh, so good!

She Who Loves Chocolate and Coconut

25 days 2011

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peppermint cookie finished

A box of candy cane pudding has been begging me to do something fun and creative with it, so I got the idea to make cake mix cookies.

From start to finish, these cookies took me less than half an hour and tasted so good.

The other perk is that the house had the most wonderful peppermint smell while these were baking. I nearly melted in a puddle on the kitchen floor.

Whip up a batch (if you love peppermint) and see what kind of words of undying gratitude come your way – if you decide to share the cookies!

Ingredients

Ingredients

Mix everything together until well blended.

Mix everything except chips together until well blended.

Stir in chips.

Stir in chips.

Drop by rounded spoonfuls on a baking sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for about eight minutes.

Drop by rounded spoonfuls on a baking sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for about six to eight minutes or until just set.

Remove from oven before they start to brown and let cool completely.

Remove from oven before they start to brown and let cool completely. I lined my baking sheet with parchment mostly because I’m lazy and don’t want to scrub the pan.

peppermint cookie finished

Peppermint Cookies

1 vanilla cake mix

1 small box instant candy cane pudding

2 eggs

1/2 cup butter, softened

1 cup white chocolate chips

1 cup peppermint crunch baking chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Mix cake mix, pudding, eggs, and butter until well blended. Stir in chips. Drop by rounded spoonfuls onto a parchment lined baking sheet. Bake about six to eight minutes, until cookies are just set (if you poke them, they still give a little but aren’t smooshy).

Remove from oven and let cool in pan for a few minutes. I slid the entire sheet of parchment out of the pan and onto the counter to let them finish cooling.

Your house, at this point, will have the most delicious peppermint aroma.

If you want to get all fancy, you could drizzle the tops with vanilla frosting and sprinkle crushed peppermint on top, but these are plenty sweet without any extra help. You could also throw in a handful of chocolate chips if you like the chocolate peppermint combo (which I do, but somehow managed not to add chocolate to this batch.)

Yield: About three dozen.

Enjoy!

She Who Really Liked These

25 days 2011

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The other day I found a recipe on Pinterest for a bar cookie that looked pretty yummy. I’d just purchased a box of Pink Lemonade Cookie Mix (for no other reason, than I thought the box was pretty and it sounded fun). Since the recipe called for a cake mix, I decided to tweak it a bit.

I have to tell you, the bars turned out pretty good. Really good. So good, in fact, that Captain Cavedweller may have eaten quite a portion of them which says a lot since he’s sweet tooth is the size of a pea rather than my elephant sized one.

This was easy to make and really worth the time! Give them a try. The sweet-tart hint of lemonade was amazing!

Mix butter, egg and the cookie mix until blended.

Spread the crust evenly into a 9X13 baking pan coated with non-stick cooking spray.

Mix cream cheese with eggs.

Add powdered sugar and beat until well blended.

Pour batter over crust.

Pop into a 300 degree oven and bake about 40-50 minutes.

 

Bake until top is a golden, luscious field of crispy brown.

 

Dust with powdered sugar, cool and slice into bars. Then consider sharing, if you’re in the mood.

 

Pink Lemonade Bars

1 box Pink Lemonade Cookie Mix

3 eggs

1 stick (1/2 cup) butter

1 8-oz pkg. cream cheese

4 cups powdered sugar
Preheat oven to 300 degrees.

Mix softened butter and 1 egg with cookie mix. Press into 9 x 13 baking pan, sprayed with non-stick cooking spray.

Beat softened cream cream cheese and remaining two eggs until blended. Add in sugar and blend until smooth. Pour over crust. Bake for about 40-50 minutes until crust is golden and crackling. It will be almost too lovely to eat. Almost.

Remove from oven and dust with powdered sugar. Cool. Cut into bars and sink your teeth into the sweet-tart bliss!

She Who Loved The Flavor of These Bars

 

 

 

 

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I needed to make something sweet and wonderful for a group of people who’ll be gathering at my house tonight.

So I found a recipe on Pinterest that sparked my interest, gave it a few tweaks and ta-da… wonderfully delicious Blackberry bars.

These were easy to put together and so yummy.

Captain Cavedweller may have tasted more than his fair share in his efforts to provide quality control over my baked goods.

Ingredients

 

Mix up crust until crumbly.

 

Press half of mixture into an 8×8 baking pan.

 

Bake at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes, then cool for about 10 minutes.

 

While the crust is cooling, whisk eggs.

 

Add in flour, sugar, sour cream, lemon, almond and salt, blending well.

 

Add berries to filling.

Folding them in gently.

 

Spoon filling over crust and top with remaining crumbles. Bake for about 45 minutes or until top is lightly browned and berry filing is bubbly.

 

Remove from oven and let cool slightly.

Then top with vanilla frosting you have nuked for about 10 seconds to warm. Just pour it over the top in a drizzling pattern.

 

Let cool completely to serve as bars or scoop out warm and serve with vanilla ice cream!

Buttery Blackberry Bars

Crust:

1 1/2 cups flour

1 cup sugar

pinch of salt

3/4 cup butter, softened

Filling:

2 eggs

1 cup sugar

1/2 cup sour cream

1/2 cup flour

pinch salt

1/2 tsp lemon juice

1 tsp almond extract

3 cups fresh blackberries

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Lightly coat an 8×8 baking pan with non-stick spray.

Combine the sugar, flour, salt and butter, cutting together until the mixture is crumbly. Divide in half.

Press half into the bottom of the baking pan and bake for about 10 minutes. Cool for about 10 minutes.

While it is cooling, whip eggs, then add in sugar, sour cream, lemon, salt, and almond extract. Mix well. Gently fold in the berries. Spoon over crust then top with remaining crumbled mixture.

Bake about 45 -50 minutes until mixture is lightly browned and berries are bubbly.

Cool and cut into bars or scoop out like a crisp and serve warm with ice cream!

She Who Liked These Way Too Much

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I love shortbread. I love caramel. I’m even learning to appreciated salt on my caramel. So why not combine the three?

This is a quick and simple recipe that will earn you many rave reviews!

Ingredients for Shortbread. Cream butter and eggs, stir in flour and vanilla.

Press dough into an 8×8 baking pan and bake until set.

Ingredients for caramel filling. Mix in a heavy saucepan and follow directions below because I realized after I started making this that my sweetened condenses milk expired a year ago and being the paranoid-freakazoid I am, I just couldn’t make myself use it even though it looked fine. In a panic, I used caramel sauce from a jar, which I would not recommend if you want these to look pretty.

Chill the bars until caramel is set then sprinkle with sea salt. You can also drizzle with chocolate if you desire (which I always do).

Salted Caramel Shortbread Bars

For the Shortbread

1 cup flour

1/4 cup granulated sugar

1 stick of butter

1 tsp. vanilla

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Cream together sugar and butter. Stir in flour and vanilla. Press into a greased (spray with Pam) 8×8 baking pan. Bake until shortbread is set but not brown (about 10-13 minutes). Remove from oven and let cool slightly before pouring on caramel layer.

For the caramel layer

1  sticks  butter, cut into pieces

1/2 cup sugar

2 tbsp. light corn syrup

1 (14 oz.) cans sweetened condensed milk

To make the caramel layer, combine the butter, sugar, corn syrup and condensed milk in a medium saucepan over medium heat.  Heat, stirring occasionally, until the butter is melted.  Increase the heat to medium-high and bring to a boil.  Reduce the heat to maintain a simmer, stirring constantly.  Continue simmering and stirring until the mixture turns an amber color and thickens slightly.  Pour the mixture over the shortbread layer, smooth the top, and allow to cool completely and set.  Make sure you use a heavy-duty saucepan or you’ll have burnt bits in your caramel.

When cool (I stuck mine in the fridge to hurry things along) sprinkle with sea salt. Cut into squares and enjoy!

She Who Needs to Stock up on Sweetened Condensed Milk

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Browsing on Pinterest the other day, I was looking for a brownie recipe that was new and exciting and different.

I found approximately 297 I wanted to try right then, but instead decided to combine a couple of recipes I found and see how it went.

It went well. Really well. Quite tasty, even.

So here is what I came up with!

Ingredients – minus the powdered sugar because I’m a dork and forget to get it out when I took the photo.

 

Mix brownies according to package directions and pour half of batter into prepared baking pan.

 

Combine coconut, cream cheese, sugar and vanilla until well blended.

 

Spread on top of brownie batter.

 

Spoon remaining batter on top of coconut and bake until set – about 35 minutes at 350 degrees.

 

Pour frosting over brownies, top with almonds and enjoy!

Yum!

Coconut Cream Brownies

1 box brownie mix

1 cup sweetened flake coconut

1 8-ounce package cream cheese, softened

1/2 cup powdered sugar

1 tsp. vanilla

1 can chocolate frosting

sliced almonds

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Mix brownies according to package directions. Spread half of mix in a greased 8 1/2 x 14 baking pan. Mix coconut, cream cheese, sugar and vanilla until well blended. Spoon over brownie batter. Top with remaining batter and bake at 350 degrees for about 30-35 minutes or until brownie batter is set. Do not over cook. You can take this out just before it seems quiet done and it should be perfect.

Let cool.

Microwave about 1/2 to 2/3 cup of the frosting for 10 seconds and pour over cooled brownies. Top with sliced almonds and serve.

She Who Really Loves Chocolate and Coconut

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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I stole this idea from pin on Pinterest that used Rice Krispies. This was a fun and flavorful alternative. Enjoy!

Ingredients

Melt marshmallows with oil or butter, like you would for Rice Krispie Treats.

 

Stir in cereal until well-coated.

Grease your hands and shape cereal mixture into egg-shaped treats.

 

Then if you want to get all fancy-pants, you can add frosting stripes, sprinkles and fun accents.

 

She Who Really Likes Fruity Pebbles

 

 

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