Chocolate Chunk Cookies w/ Salty Burnt Caramel

As I tested this recipe earlier today, I was told, “Whatever you’re making smells delicious,” but at this point in time there were only two things on the stove: nearly three sticks of salted butter browning in two separate saucepans. One would eventually bubble into a toasty caramel with sugar and a little bit of milk, while the other would be joined by even more butter for the cookie dough. This situation sums up the inspiration for these cookies: the happy power of butter, which, in this case, provides all the flavor for the recipe. Three major reasons for the different uses of this ingredient in these cookies: brown butter offers an insane depth of flavor where normal chocolate chips cookies lack, caramel is all I need in this crazy, crazy life, and how else would I come up with pretentious recipe titles without it?

Tip: If you don’t have/can’t find chocolate “chunks,” melt a bag of normal chocolate chips in the microwave in 30 second intervals and stir smooth, then fill a piping bag (no tip) or a Ziploc bag (snip the end) with the melted chocolate, and pipe chocolate chunks onto baking sheets lined with wax paper. Let them cool until they’re set.

chocolate chunk cookies with salty burnt caramel

Chocolate Chunk Cookies with Salty Burnt Caramel

caramel sauce

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Melted butter

browned butter

browned butter

chocolate chunk cookie dough

chocolate chunk cookies with salty burnt caramel

chocolate chunk cookie with salty burnt caramel

Make the Cookies

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups of flour
  • 1 1/4 tsp of baking powder
  • 2 sticks of butter
  • Chocolate chunks (24 oz)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • caramel (recipe cut in 1/2)
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 and line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silpat.
  2. In a saucepan, brown 1 stick of butter on low heat, swirling occasionally until there are dark bits at the bottom of the pan. Remove from the heat and add the second stick of butter. Stir until melted.
  3. Pour the butter into a large bowl and mix in sugar, then the eggs and vanilla.
  4. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour and baking powder. Add to the butter mixture and stir until combined, then add the chocolate chunks.
  5. Scoop dough onto the prepared pans and bake for 10-12 minutes. At around 8 minutes, drizzle them with caramel and return them to the oven to finish baking for a couple minutes. Sprinkle with coarse sea salt and more caramel.

Enjoy!

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Paint Spill Sugar Cookies (+ DIY Tutorial)

A healthy alternative for those who love eating lead-based paint. An unhealthy alternative for vegetables and other health-related food items due to the fact that they’re cookies.

The method is simple: alternate piping thick films of dyed icing onto the center of a sugar cookie until the colors create a marbled rainbow effect and spill over the sides.

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Here’s the cookie tutorial!:

For the icing:

  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 6 tsp milk
  • 6 tsp light corn syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • Food dye (I used the 3 primary colors)

1. Whisk together the milk and powdered sugar, then add the corn syrup and vanilla.
2. Divide the icing into 3 portions and dye each with your colors of choice.

Alternate piping thick films of dyed icing onto the center of a sugar cookie until the colors create a marbled rainbow effect and spill over the sides. Use cooled, flat sugar cookies for the best results.

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Gingerdead Men

WOW THIS IS SUPER LATE.

I really did mean to post this on Halloween, but since it’s a gingerbread recipe, it can also be used for Christmas. I used this cookie cutter for these guys and they turned out great, but they didn’t hold icing well unfortunately. Royal icing is always the way to go with gingerbread.

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Make the cookies

Ingredients:

  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup of brown sugar
  • 3/4 of a cup molasses
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. ground cloves
  • 2 sticks of salted butter at room temperature
  • 4 cups of flour
  • 2 tsp. ginger
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  1. Cream together the butter and sugars, then add the egg and molasses.
  2. In another bowl, blend your spices, flour, and baking soda. Add the flour mixture to the butter and mix until combined.
  3. Refrigerate the dough until it’s firm enough to work with, about 1-2 hours or over night.
  4. Preheat the oven to 350. Roll out the dough, cut into shapes, and bake for about 10 minutes.
  5. Ice them when they’re completely cooled.

Make the Royal icing:

Beat 2 large egg whites until they begin to hold their shape, add 1/2 tsp. of a vanilla extract. Pour in 4 cups of powdered sugar gradually, until the icing looks like icing and has the consistency you want. Frost the cookies.

Enjoy! <3, B

 

 

 

Autumn Macarons

Every season has a different flavor and color palette in my opinion. So instead of calling these cookies “Chai Macarons” or “Cinnamon Macarons,” I decided it would be best to name them Autumn Macarons. Fall is cinnamon, pumpkin and cloves, summer is lemon, basil and peach, spring is lavender, chocolate and almond, and winter is mint, caramel, and nutmeg.

These just happen to capture fall.

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(for the filling)

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Make the croons

Ingredients:

  • 2 large egg whites
  • 5 tablespoons of white sugar
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/2 cup of almonds
  • 1/2 tsp. nutmeg
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. cloves
  1. Preheat the oven to 350. Line two baking sheets with silpats or parchment paper.
  2. In a food processor, grind up the almonds until they’re fine. Add the cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and powdered sugar and grind until well blended.
  3. In a kitchen aid, whip the egg whites. Add the white sugar gradually until the whites are stiff and hold peaks (There’s nothing more satisfying than this small accomplishment.)
  4. Fold the almond mixture into the egg whites, then fill a piping bag or large ziploc with the batter. Pipe the macaron shells on the baking sheets about 1 inch apart, then slam the pan on a flat surface a few times to flatten them out.
  5. Bake them for about 15 minutes. If they stick to the parchment when you try to pick them up, let them bake for another couple minutes.

For the chai filling:

Steep 2 chai tea bags in 1/2 cup of hot water, then let sit until the tea is cool. Remove the bags. Beat together 1 stick of salted butter (1/2 cup) and about 1 1/4 cups of powdered sugar. Add a dash of cinnamon and keep beating until the mixture is fluffy and creamy. Add 4-5 tablespoons of tea, mixing well after each tablespoon is added. Spread or pipe a little filling on the cooled macaron shells and sandwich them together.

Enjoy! <3, B

Slutty Brownies

These are crazy. First let’s discuss the layers; chocolate chip cookie, oreo cookies, and brownie. It’s like butter, sugar and chocolate had a freaky one night stand and this is the product. However, I didn’t come up with the name. These are classic slutty brownies.

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Sorry no finished product picture, I completely forgot..

Make the brownies

Ingredients:

  • 1 box brownie mix (I use Ghirardelli)
  • Oreos (about 1 sleeve/row)

For the chocolate chip cookie layer:

  • 1 1/4 cup bittersweet chocolate chips
  • 1 stick of butter, softened
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla (didn’t appear in the group photo, sorry!)
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 and grease a glass pan. Make the brownie batter, set aside.
  2. WIth a hand mixer, cream the sugars and butter together. Add the egg & vanilla and beat until blended. In another bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, and baking soda together. Add to the butter mixture gradually, then stir in the chocolate chips.
  3. Assembly: spread the cookie dough in the bottom of the greased pan. Place the oreos in rows (don’t over do it, I did three columns), and pour the brownie batter on top. Level out the top with a knife or off set spatula. I pour sprinkles on the top before baking, but that’s just me.
  4. Bake for about 30 minutes. I had to keep checking because my rough draft’s time was off, so keep checking on them! You’ll know they’re done when a knife inserted in the center comes out with a few moist brownie crumbs.

Enjoy!

B

Lavender Sugar Cookies

You’ll actually need the special lavender sugar I used in this recipe. Without it they’re just normal sugar cookies and there’s nothing exciting about that. I got mine at Monsieur Marcel, but you can probably find this brand of sugar (or at least something similar) at any other gourmet super market. It wasn’t intentional to make these cookies baby shower-ish and easter-ish, but they are what they are and they are delicious. Dye the vanilla frosting glaze pastel colors and they come out beautiful.

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Make the cookies

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups of flour
  • 1 cup of lavender sugar
  • 1/2 cup normal granulated white sugar
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 2 sticks of salted butter, softened (1 cup)
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 egg
  1. Preheat the oven to 375. In a kitchen aid cream together the butter and sugars. Add the egg and vanilla. 
  2. In another bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and baking soda.
  3. Add the dry ingredients to the butter gradually until it comes together and forms a soft dough.
  4. Roll the dough into ping pong ball sized pieces and place them about 1 1/2 inches apart on un-greased cookie sheets. Bake for about 8-10 minutes or until they’re slightly golden around the edges but still soft in the middle. (Remember: soft when they first come out means chewy later on, chewy when they first come out means crispy later on.)

Make the frosting glaze: whip 3 tbsp. butter and 2 cups powdered sugar together in a medium sized bowl. Stream in 3 tbsp. of milk or until the frosting is thin. Add more milk if it isn’t thin enough, add more sugar if it isn’t thick enough. Add a touch of wilton food dye.

Enjoy! <3, B

French Chocolate Macarons

(Sort of.)

I constantly use this recipe, but for some random reason they didn’t turn out the way they always do. Usually, when you make macarons, they’re baked with a little “foot” on the end of the cookie. HOWEVER, these did not bake with a foot, they were cracked on the top, and the cookies came out very delicate. (Still delicious, just not the same.) I think the reason they came out differently was my oven, which has been acting strange, or the fact I might have over-whipped the egg whites..in any case, I’m giving you my classic recipe and hopefully you’ll find success with it. 

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Make the macarons

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups of powdered sugar
  • 6 tbsp. cocoa powder
  • 1 cup ground up almonds (4 oz of sliced almonds in a food processor)
  • 4 egg whites (at room temperature)
  • 10 tbsp. white sugar
  1. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper, and preheat the oven to 350. In a food processor, grind up the almonds, powdered sugar, and cocoa powder. 
  2. In a kitchen aid, whip the egg whites until they begin to stiffen, then gradually add the white sugar 1 tablespoon at a time. Stop whipping when the mix can hold soft peaks. WIth a rubber spatula, fold in the almond mix.
  3. Fill a piping bag (with a plain tip) or ziploc bag (snip off a corner) with the batter and pipe 1 inch circles onto the lined baking sheets. Bang the sheets on a flat surface a few times to flatten out the circles. Bake the cookies for 10-15 minutes.

Ganache (filling) Ingredients:

  • 4 tps. light corn syrup
  • 3 tbsp. butter (cut into small chunks)
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 8 oz dark chocolate
  • drop of vanilla
  1. In a small saucepan over medium-high heat, stir together the cream, vanilla, and corn syrup. When the edges begin to bubble, remove from the heat.
  2. Add the chocolate, wait 2 minutes, then whisk until smooth. Add the butter and whisk.
  3. Refrigerate or just leave the ganache at room temperature until it thickens. (1-2 hours)
  4. Pipe or spread a layer of ganache between two macaron cookies and sandwich them together.

Enjoy! <3, B

 

Macaroons vs. Macarons: There’s a Difference

Ok. I will debate with anyone any time or place about the difference between these two–very different– desserts. I find it annoying when misinformed people don’t have the first clue about the subject and convince themselves they’re French-smart.

There is a huge difference. First of all, the spelling of course. Macarons are French. Macaroons are not. Though I find it easier to pronounce them the same way (the “American” way) with emphasis on the O’s, one is a french word and the other is not.

Next, they’re two very, very different cookies. Whereas macaroons are cookies made from egg and coconut, macarons are two delicate shells encasing a ganache or cream. There IS a difference, trust me.

Seriously, if they’re colorful sandwich-like cookies, they’re macarons. And don’t let any “”””ignorant”””” person inform you otherwise.

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(Pictures courtesy of http://mommyssweetconfessions.blogspot.com/2012/07/macarons-try-1.html & http://www.tinynewyorkkitchen.com/coconut-macaroons/ )

Oatmeal Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Easily my favorite cookies. This recipe is actually pretty customizable; if you’re traditional, add raisins, if you have a sweet tooth, add chocolate chips, and if you’re daring, add both. If you prefer a chewier cookie, bake for 8-10 minutes. If you’d rather have a crispier cookie, bake for for 15-20 minutes. I personally prefer roughly chopping 1/2 lb of bittersweet chocolate and stirring it in the dough, and baking them for about 9 minutes. No matter how you bake them, they always come out delicious.

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Vanilla<3

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Here’s my recipe for Oatmeal Chocolate Chunk Cookies:

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup butter, softened 
  • 1 cup white sugar 
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar 
  • 2 eggs 
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour 
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda 
  • 1 teaspoon salt 
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon 
  • 3 cups quick cooking oats
  • 1/2 lb bitter sweet chocolate, chopped into chunks (or raisins, nuts, etc.)

Make these cookies:

1. In a kitchen aid or medium bowl with electric mixer, cream the white sugar, butter, and brown sugar. Beat in the eggs, then mix in the vanilla.

2. In another medium bowl, mix the flour, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt. Stir into the butter mixture, then mix in the oats. Stir in the chocolate, raisins, or nuts. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and chill for 1 hour.

3. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Line baking sheets with parchment paper or silpats and drop the dough about 1 inch apart on the sheet.

4. Bake for 8-10 minutes for chewy cookies, or 15-20 minutes for crispy cookies. Enjoy!

<3, B

Nuttella Chocolate Chip Cookies

Chocolate and hazelnut bake a delicious chewy cookie. 

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Nuttella is the secret weapon; almost everyone loves the taste of nuttella.

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Here’s my recipe for Nuttella Chocolate Chip Cookies:

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup butter (1 stick), at room temperature
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1-1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/4 cup Nutella
  • 1-1/2 cups chocolate chips

Directions:

1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees and prep baking sheets with silpats or parchment paper.

2. In a large bowl whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt.

 3. In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream the butter, the sugar and the brown sugar. Add the eggs and the vanilla until combined.

4. Gradually add the flour until the mixture is combined. Then mix Nutella. Finally add in the chocolate chips.

5. Use ice cream scoop and drop on baking sheets and bake for 9-11 minutes.