Chocolate Espresso “Stress” Cake

Desserts | January 29, 2016 | By

Chocolate Expresso "Stress" Cake

How do you deal with stress? Some run; some do yoga; some read; I bake. Whenever I am really stressed, I find baking to be therapeutic. I don’t know exactly why, but something about creating the perfect cake, cookie, bread, brownie or pastry helps me get out of my brain. Maybe it’s because I know that with just a few hours in the kitchen, I can whip up almost anything. Or maybe it’s because I like taste testing the fruits of my labor. Who knows. :-)
For the past couple weeks, my work schedule kicked my butt. So, I spent last weekend baking up a storm. It was a spur of the moment decision to make this chocolate “stress” cake, so when I found that I didn’t have all the ingredients I would usually need to make a cake, I had to improvise. 

After I already started making the cake, I found I didn’t have two crucial ingredients — milk and butter. I rarely buy milk these days (I’m trying to cut back on my dairy intake), but not having sticks and sticks of butter in the fridge and freezer was very unlike me.

(more…)

Mini Mint Chocolate Madeleines

Desserts | December 11, 2015 | By

Mini Mint Chocolate Madeleines

Earlier this week, I organized a white elephant gift exchange for my work. It turned out to be a great success. A couple bottles of champagne and 30 participants later, I ended up with an adult coloring book. And though I’m super excited to color in my gift, I’m glad that we got to take an hour out of our days to unwind during this busy work season. And obviously, what’s a holiday event without a little cookie action?

12daysofcookies2015

Day 6: Mini Mint Chocolate Madeleines

When I first moved into my apartment, my mom gave me a ton of new baking supplies, one of which was a pan for mini madeleines. I’ve never made madeleines before, but I thought how hard could these cake-like cookies be?

(more…)

Hot Cocoa Macarons

Desserts | December 10, 2015 | By

Hot Cocoa Macarons

I was a little nervous when I first decided to make these macarons. The last time I made macarons was a couple years ago during a cooking class – meaning I was under the careful supervision of a teacher. So when my co-worker requested these cookies for her birthday almost two years after the originally made them in class, I revisited the recipe with a little trepidation.

12daysofcookies2015

Day 5: Hot Cocoa Macarons

The macaron is not a cookie that you can take shortcuts with – believe me, I tried (if their is a shortcut in the kitchen, I’m all for it). So, if your recipe says to  sift the flour mixture three times, it’s probably for a good reason. If you are supposed to use eggs at room temperature, you shouldn’t use eggs straight out of the fridge. You get the idea; don’t mess with the technique.

(more…)

Flourless Chocolate Cake {GF and Vanilla Free}

Desserts | November 13, 2015 | By

Flourless Chocolate Cake

TGIF everyone! Today, I want to share this wonderful, flourless chocolate cake recipe that I made for a coworker’s birthday. My coworker is gluten free and allergic to vanilla, so she usually can’t partake when I make things for other office birthdays.  So for her birthday, I wanted to make it really special and bake something she could definitely eat. And thus, this cake.

I think the biggest challenge with a flourless cake is that it can fall apart very easily if you don’t follow directions carefully. So for this cake, I highly suggest you don’t omit any of the ingredients, bake the full time stated in the recipe, and when it comes time to plate the cake, firmly place a plate over the cake tin so the cake doesn’t move much when you flip it.

(more…)

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

Desserts | November 27, 2014 | By

pumpkinchocolatechip1

Happy Thanksgiving! It’s been a while my friends. I wish I could say I’ve been gone on some type of adventure where cell service was limited and there’s no outlet to plug in my trusty mac book. But alas, that would be a lie. As an editor, I’m never more than 10 feet and a back pocket away from my laptop and phone. I have no excuse for this blogendous (horrendous blog faux pas) occurrence. I can only offer you a story and these cookies and hope you will accept my post.

Thanksgiving: the time to give thanks and appreciate those around you. And, let me tell you, I’m feeling pretty darn thankful y’all. I have a great family, amazing friends, crazy/cute cats and an awesome job. I get to travel when I want (I just recently got back from a trip to Washington, D.C. and Indianapolis to visit my friend Sami and my brother respectively). I eat what I like (look for new restaurant reviews from me and Hailey in the coming weeks). And to top it off, I spent last weekend catching up with Hailey and our close friends. What can I say; I live the life.

I made these cookies a few weeks ago when I was going through my “let’s put pumpkin in everything” phase. I love these cookies because they are extremely soft and moist without being too cake. Plus, give me something that combines chocolate and pumpkin and I’m happy. So stir things up this year at your Thanksgiving feast by switching out the boring old pumpkin pie for some of these pumpkin chocolate chip cookies!

Cheers!

pumpkinchocolatechip3

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies (adapted from Sally’s Baking Addiction)

1/2 Cups of Butter

1/4 Cup of Brown Sugar

1/2 Cup of Sugar

1 Tsp. of Vanilla Extract

10 Tbsp. of Pumpkin Puree

1 and 1/2 Cups of Flour

1/4 Tsp. of Salt

1/4 Tsp. of Baking Powder

1/4 Tsp of Baking Soda

2 and 1/2 Tsp. of Cinnamon

1/4 Tsp. of Nutmeg

1/4 Tsp. of Cloves

2/3 Cups of Chocolate Chips

Directions:

Melt butter and combine with both sugars in a medium-sized bowl until fully combined. Stir in vanilla extract and pumpkin puree and whisk until smooth. Set the wet mixture aside.

In a larger bowl, mix the dry ingredients (flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves). Stir in the wet mixture into the dry ingredients and mix until fully combined. Add the chocolate chips and fold into the cookie batter. If the dough is soft, refrigerate for a minimum of 30 minutes or until the dough begins to firm up.

Once the dough is firm, roll the batter into balls and place on a cookie baking sheet. Flatten each cookie dough ball slightly to help the cookies spread. Cook at 350 degrees for 8-10 minutes or until the edges look slightly firm. Don’t worry if the cookie is still soft; it will continue to cook and firm up as the cookies cool.

Makes approximately 20 cookies.

pumpkinchocolatechip2
pumpkinchocolatechip4

pumpkinchocolatechip5