Does anyone recall my love for Jif Whips? I made this Whipped Chocolate Peanut Butter Frosting and immediately posted it the following day. Jif Whips are what I call a “yellow light food”- which means I need to approach it cautiously, because overindulgence is absolutely going to happen. So I first used it in a frosting and now I am using it for a Peanut Butter Cake Bar.
I adapted this recipe from one of my favorite bloggers, Dorothy at Crazy For Crust. She did a brownie version of this bar. I changed it up using a cake mix base, added some Jif Whips and used crumbled brownies on top. The crumbled brownies were really just a way for me to allow myself to finish the brownies left over from the previous project. There is no guilt in eating brownies that are baked into a cake bar, trust me! Head over to My Cooking Spot for the recipe!
I mentioned on Monday that I am on vacation at the lake for a week, and it is friggin’ hot! The area where I live is somewhat coastal, so it gets warm but not unbearable. The weather here is in the high 90s. I know everyone in inland California, Arizona, Texas and other part of the US are rolling their eyes right now, but seriously, I am not used to this and I don’t know how you deal with it! Thank god I can just jump in the lake at any given time during the day. So there will be very little baking going on while I am on vacation. Grilling? Sure, all day long, but I am NOT turning on the oven. Therefore, desserts will be of the no-bake variety. I guess it helps that we can hop in the boat and cross the lake for some frozen mud pie!
How about these No-Bake Mini Salted Caramel Ice Cream Brownies? They couldn’t be easier to prepare. I used a container of store-bought brownies, some Haagen-Dazs Sea Salt Caramel Gelato and homemade whipped cream. These mini ice cream brownies are the perfect little snack. I usually feel less guilty when I eat things in smaller portions, until I eat 3 or 4 of them. Oops. Anyway, I am totally head over heels in LOVE with this Sea Salt Caramel Gelato ice cream. I am not usually a salted caramel type of person, but I could eat a pint of this ice cream about as fast as I could down a pint of Ben and Jerrys.
A few weeks back, my mom and I went on a bakery tour in Austin when I was there for the BlogHer Food conference. One of the bakeries I went to was called Delish and they had a fabulous millionaire bar. The bar consisted of a shortbread crust layered with cookie dough, caramel and chocolate. As soon as I tasted it, I knew I wanted to make my own version at home. I had a few leftover boxes of Walkers Shortbread Cookies so it was the perfect opportunity to try something.
My version of the “millionaire bar” has a shortbread crust, made with a mixture of Walkers Shortbread cookies, and is layered with espresso chip cookie dough then topped with an espresso infused chocolate ganache. Continue reading →
Who’s ready for some more chocolate? I am so good during the day while I am at work (most of the time), but I get home and I just need something sweet. Yesterday, my second reminder to “get my butt in shape” popped up on my iPhone; I set them for myself in January. Yet, I traded in my workout shoes for one of these Sweet and Salty Junkyard Brownies.
A couple of months ago while browsing through my favorite Wholefoods ever, I spotted some ridiculously amazing looking brownies topped with all sorts of salty snacks. I could see the caramel oozing out the sides and knew I was going to have to make them at home.
These are really quite simple. I used a boxed mix of brownies and added some Hersey’s baking melts for added chocolate, because nothing goes better with chocolate than more chocolate. I smothered my brownie in caramel sauce and then topped it with pretzels, crushed cashews and caramel popcorn. Continue reading →
When I was only four years old, we relocated from Wisconsin to Vermont, where I grew up until after I graduated college. Some of the kids I graduated high school with, I have known since pre-school. Several years after we moved to Vermont, a few mothers in my 2nd grade class got together to a organize a holiday cookie exchange. Twenty years later, it is still going on with most of the original moms and some new ones we have met along the way.
When I was little, I looked forward to the cookie exchange every Christmas. It meant a few things for me. I got to help my mom bake cookies and I had an excuse to see my friends on a school night. Plus I got to eat lots and lots of delicious homemade cookies. This year was the 20th anniversary of my Mom’s cookie exchange.
I thought it would be fun for my Mom and I to each make a recipe of her mother’s Mint Frosted Brownies on the weekend of the cookie exchange. Even though I am 3000 miles away, we constantly swap cooking advice, especially around this time of year. How do I make that again? These mint frosted brownies were one of my absolute favorite Christmas cookies that my grandmother used to make; I swear, this is how I became hooked on mint chocolate. Well Grandma’s recipe is true to it’s taste, the same way it was when I was a child.