Tag Archives: dessert

Fudgy Brownies

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FUDGY BROWNIES

I often struggle with brownies; there’s a fine line between gooey and under-baked and amazingly fudgy yet cooked through. I strongly dislike cakey brownies, so over-baking is even worse. That’s why I LOVE this recipe. These brownies have the perfect texture – fudgy, dense and moist with a flaky crust – and amazing flavor – chocolately with a slight hint of caramel. I promise you won’t be disappointed. 

{ Lovin’ from the oven, Chelsea }

Makes one 9 x 13-inch baking pan

2 sticks unsalted butter, coarsely diced

8 ounces dark chocolate, cut or broken into chunks

4 eggs, at room temperature

1 cup granulated sugar

1 cup dark brown sugar, firmly packed

2 tsp vanilla extract

½ tsp kosher salt

1 cup all-purpose flour

Preheat oven to 350. Line baking pan with parchment paper and butter or grease paper. Set pan aside.

In a double boiler (or a homemade version with a heatproof bowl sitting on top of a saucepan), combine unsalted butter with chocolate. Using a rubber spatula, stir constantly until melted and smooth, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.

In a medium bowl, whisk together 4 eggs. Add granulated sugar, brown sugar, vanilla extract, and kosher sea salt. Whisk until fully incorporated. The mixture should be a golden tan color. Whisk in the chocolate mixture (from the second step).

Once the mixture is a uniform dark brown, use a rubber spatula to fold in 1 cup flour. Be careful not to overmix during this part! Simply fold in until the flour is incorporated. It’s okay to have one or two small flour streaks left in the batter.

Pour batter into prepared pan, using the rubber spatula to spread evenly. Bake for 30 – 35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Allow to cool completely on a wire rack, before cutting and serving.

As seen on Hummingbird High

DARK CHOCOLATE OATMEAL COOKIES

It turns out that my oven here in Gap, France, doesn’t have a thermometer. It doesn’t even have numbers or markings on the knob to determine where an approximate temperature might be. So baking here is going to be very interesting, but I’m sure I’ll learn a lot about the science of baking and the importance of time and temperature. It might just take a few tries. Fortunately, these test-run cookies came out delicious and got even better as they cooled. Lesson learned: you can’t go wrong with chocolate.

{ Lovin’ from the oven, Chelsea }

Makes about 2 ½ dozen small cookies

½ cup butter

150g good dark chocolate (I used Lindt 70% Cocoa)

1 tsp vanilla

3 tbsp unsweetened cocoa

¼ cup sugar

¼ cup brown sugar

1 egg

1 tsp baking soda

1 cup flour

¾ cup oats

50g good dark chocolate, broken into chunks to press into the baked cookies

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a glass bowl, melt the butter and chocolate chips in the microwave for 1 minute. Stir mixture and continue to melt in 20 second increments until the butter and chocolate is melted & smooth. Allow to cool for 5 minutes.

In a large mixing bowl, combine the chocolate/butter mixture, vanilla, cocoa, white sugar, and brown sugar and mix with an electric mixer for 30 seconds. Add egg and stir until combined.

On low speed, add in baking soda and mix for 15 seconds. Slowly add in flour and oats and mix for 30 seconds, or until dough is combined.

Scoop by the tablespoon onto a parchment-covered baking sheet and bake for 9-10 minutes.

Keep the cookies on the hot pan after removing from the oven and lightly press in chocolate chunks. Allow the cookies to continue to bake on the hot sheet for 5-10 minutes before devouring.

*adapted from Design Eat Repeat

VEGAN CARROT CAKE DONUTS* + COCONUT FROSTING

Earlier this fall, Katie and I were adamant about making donuts. We couldn’t get it out of our heads. So one long weekend when we were all home, Katie, Audrey (who you might remember from the 100 Chocolate Creme Pie Challenge), and I decided to make 3 dozen different types of donuts: Cinnamon Peach, Chocolate-Chocolate Chunk, and Carrot Cake. As you may have noticed, I have a thing for coconut and carrots, so these Carrot Cake Donuts trumped all as my favorite flavor. 

{ Lovin’ from the oven, Chelsea }

Makes about 12 mini donuts

¾ cup AP flour

¼ cup old-fashioned oats

½ tsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

1/8 tsp sea salt

1 tsp ground cinnamon

1/8 tsp ground nutmeg

¼ cup brown sugar

½ cup unsweetened applesauce

2 tbsp vanilla almond milk

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

¾ cups grated carrots (about 2 large carrots)

2 tbsp chopped walnuts

1 tbsp fresh squeezed lemon juice

FROSTING

2/3 cup sweetened shredded coconut

¼ cup coconut butter

1 tsp almond extract

1/3 cup powdered sugar

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Coat a donut tin with cooking spray. We used a mini donut tray for bite-sized deliciousness!

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, oats, baking powder, baking soda, sea salt, cinnamon and nutmeg.

In a separate bowl, stir together the brown sugar, unsweetened applesauce, almond milk and vanilla extract.

Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir until fully combined. Fold in the carrots and walnuts. Stir in the lemon juice.

Pipe the batter into the greased donut tin and bake for 8-10 minutes, or until a toothpick can be inserted and removed cleanly.

While the donuts are baking, toast the coconut in a small toaster oven until slightly browned and crispy. If you don’t have a toaster oven, simply toast the coconut in the oven after the donuts are done. To do so, spread the shredded coconut on a cookie sheet. Bake for 7-8 minutes, stirring frequently and watching closely. When the coconut begins to brown, remove it from the oven and allow it to cool on the pan.

To make the frosting, mix together the coconut butter, almond extract, and powdered sugar until fully combined. Once the donuts have cooled completely, dunk the top of each donut into the frosting and then into the toasted coconut. Eat up!

* adapted from The Tolerant Vegan

CHOCOLATE ESPRESSO CAKE* + BANANA CHOCOLATE FROSTING [VEGAN]

I had hoped to get a nice shot of this cake when I arrived at my friends potluck last evening, but alas is was attacked and eaten alongside Wayside fried chicken, borscht soup, and blue cheese fig cookies [a rather impressive spread of treats at this potluck]. While I’m certainly not vegan, I enjoy making baked goods that are, as an added challenge for myself and to make a healthy, universally eatable treat for everyone [not gluten free however, but doable].

The cake, Margaret Fox’s Amazon cake found on Food52, I’ve altered slightly for a rich coffee flavor and is so simple to make. The frosting is a strange invention I concocted out of my desire to put bananas in everything and it is so guilt free you could eat it for breakfast! [but seriously, throw some chia seeds in, soak over night and you have chocolate pudding] As my friend Raf put it at the party “This is the first vegan thing I have ever liked.”                                                          photo credit: David Kessel

[ Bon Appétiting, Katie ]

Serves 8-10

CAKE

1 ½ cup flour

⅓ cup unsweetened cocoa powder [I used extra dark]

1 tsp baking soda

1 scant cup sugar

½ tsp salt

5 tsp oil [sunflower, canola, etc.]

1 cup coffee, cooled 

1 ½ tsp vanilla extract

1 TBS cider vinegar

1. Preheat the oven to 350F and grease a 9 inch round cake pan.

2. Sift together the first five ingredients [flour, cocoa, baking soda, sugar + salt]. In a separate bowl whisk together wet ingredients.

3. Combine wet and dry, whisk out any lumps. Pour into greased cake pan and tap the pan on the counter several times to release air bubbles. Bake 25-30 mins until a toothpick comes out clean.

4. Remove from the oven and let cool completely before icing on a plate.

FROSTING

2 very ripe bananas

3 TBS cocoa powder

3 TBS agave syrup 

3 TBS coconut oil [or nut butter of choice]

1. While the cake is in the oven, prepare the frosting by combing all ingredients in a medium sized bowl and beating with a hand beater for several minutes until the frosting is smooth.

2. When the cake has completely cooled, remove from the pan and pour the frosting on top of the cake, spreading just to the edges with a spatula.

3. Top with toasted nuts, shaved chocolate, or any topping that suits you!

*adapted from Food52

ALMOND JOY CANDY BITES*

Coconut – always the coconut. And chocolate. Definitely can’t go wrong with this classic combo. Plus, they’re bite size, so you can gobble up a few without any remorse. This recipe is so quick and easy, you’ll wonder why you didn’t think of it yourself. Well, neither did I, so don’t feel too bad.

{ Lovin’ from the oven, Chelsea }

Makes about 15-20 candy balls, depending on the size

1 cup sweetened coconut flakes, lightly packed

3 tbsp coconut oil

1 tsp vanilla extract

pinch of salt

15 (or more) whole almonds

~4 ounces 60% cocoa chocolate chips

1. Line a baking sheet or plate (or something that will fit in your freezer) with parchment paper.

2. In a food processor, process the coconut, coconut oil, vanilla extract, and salt until it becomes a thick paste, about 2-3 minutes. Form the coconut mixture into bite-size balls and drop onto the parchment-lined tray. If you want, press an almond on top of the coconut. Otherwise, save the almonds for later, to top off the chocolate. Freeze the coconut balls for 15-30 minutes, or until solid.

3. Melt the chocolate chips in the microwave in 15 second increments, stirring between each increment until the chocolate is smooth. Skewer each frozen candy bar onto a toothpick and dip into the melted chocolate, tapping off any excess chocolate. If you didn’t use your almonds before, add them to the top of the chocolate before it hardens. You can also sprinkle them with shredded coconut. Wait for the chocolate to dry before removing from the toothpick.

Serve immediately or store at room temperature for several days.

* adapted from Pastry Affair

CHOCOLATE CREME PIE + CHOCO-COFFEE GRAHAM CRACKER CRUST*

One summer, my friend, Audrey, and I got this amazing idea: we would try to make 100 chocolate creme pies! It didn’t matter the size; mini ones counted too. Well, we only got to about 35 pies before my siblings told me they couldn’t handle any more. My younger sister still complains every time I make a chocolate pie, but my little brother loves them, so I continue to bake away. Someday – hopefully soon – we’ll hit that 100 mark.

{ Lovin’ from the oven, Chelsea }

CRUST

40 graham crackers (10 full cracker sheets)

2 tbsp granulated sugar

1 tbsp instant coffee

2 tbsp butter, melted

¼ cup mini chocolate chips

FILLING

2 cups milk, divided

2/3 cup granulated sugar

1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa

3 tbsp cornstarch

1/8 tsp salt

1 large egg

2 ounces dark chocolate, chopped (I recommend 60-72% cocoa)

1 tsp vanilla extract

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat a 9-inch pie plate with cooking spray.

2. To prepare the crust, place the grahams in a food processor; process until JUST crumbly (be careful not to make the mixture too fine). Add the sugar, coffee, and butter, and pulse a few more times, just until moist. Stir in the chocolate chips. Press the crumb mixture into the pie plate. Bake for 8 minutes or until golden, and then cool for about 15 minutes.

3. To prepare the filling, combine 1/2 cup milk with the sugar, unsweetened cocoa, corn starch, salt, and egg in a large bowl, stirring with a whisk.

4. Heat 1 1/2 cups milk in a saucepan over medium-high heat until tiny bubbles form around edge (do not boil). Remove from heat. Gradually add the hot milk to sugar mixture, stirring constantly with a whisk. Return milk mixture to pan. Add chopped chocolate, and cook over medium heat until thick and bubbly (about 5 minutes), stirring constantly. Reduce heat to low; cook 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from heat; stir in vanilla.

5. Pour into prepared crust, and chill for 3 hours or until cold. Serve with whipped cream and more mini chocolate chips.

*adapted from Cooking Light