chocolate

Top 10 Recipes of 2012

I can’t believe it is actually 2013. I will write another post reflecting back on this past year (and share some photos from my fun New Year’s Eve), symptoms but for now, here’s a look at the top 10 most popular recipes from 2012 :) Enjoy and happy baking!

1. Mini Peanut Butter and Nutella Cheesecakes– For two years in a row these delicious mini cheesecakes have been number one! I made both a peanut butter and nutella variety, and they were both delicious. These cheesecakes are not only tasty, but they look so cute they are sure to impress anyone!

mini cheesecakes web2

2. Nutella Swirl Brownie Bites– My sister still talks about these and wants me to make them again. The recipe is incredibly simple and results in small, amazingly fudgy, and nutella-filled brownies.

nutella swirl web8

3. Vanilla Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream Frosting– Usually I’m a chocolate girl, but these Vanilla cupcakes were so good! I also had a lot of fun piping on the frosting and I think they turned out so cute :)

vanilla cupcakes web2

4. Gooey, Delicious, Incredible S’mores Bars– These might actually be number one in my book! They are so gooey, sweet, buttery, and delicious. Possibly one of the best things I have ever made :)

s'mores bars web4 copy

5. Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cookies– These cookies intrigued me from the moment I saw them! I think the best part of making chocolate chip cookies is eating the raw dough, and these cookies let me eat cookies and dough all in one! Brilliant!

cookie dough cookies web4

6. Healthier Banana Bread– This Banana bread tastes just as good as my non-lightened-up favorite. A delicious, flavorful, and healthy banana bread is always wonderful to have around the house!

healthier bb web1

7. Peanut Butter Chocolate Pretzel Truffles- This is a combination of all my favorite foods! Pretzel, peanut butter, and chocolate :)

pb pretzel web2

Honorable Mention: Felt Hairbow Tutorial– These were really #8, but since they aren’t a recipe, I won’t count them. They are a really fun craft project, though, and I often wear the bows I made :)

hairbow web6

8. Gooey Peanut Butter Reese’s Bars– These are at the top of my list of favorites, too, right up there with the s’mores bars. These are so gooey and so delicious!

gooey-pb-bars-web5

9. Swedish Meatballs– I’m so glad these made the top 10! Swedish meatballs are one of my favorite foods and I always love it when my mom makes them :)

meatballs web11

10. Mini Corn Dog Muffins– I have made these several times this year and my family absolutely loves them. They are so cute, tasty, and easy to make.

corn dog mm web4 copy

And, because I can’t resist, here are a few of my favorites that didn’t make the list :)

Pioneer Woman Cinnamon Rolls– These will forever be one of my favorite foods. I would eat them everyday if I could :) I would wager that you will never have a better cinnamon roll than these.

croll web1

Pumpkin Deliciousness Cake– I may or may not have stood in the kitchen, eating piece by piece of this cake straight out of the pan ;)

Pumpkin Deliciousness Cake

Gooey Nutella Bars– These, along with the s’mores and reese’s bars, are in my top 3 favorite desserts of the year. So tasty! My kitty thought they were great, too :)

gn-bars-web2

Christmas Cookie Ideas

Are you guys baking for Christmas yet? I love baking cookies around Christmas-time. Cookies are fun to make and also easy to give away! This post is filled with some of my favorite cookie (and bar) recipes that you can enjoy this holiday season!

First Up- I’ve made three different bars this year that are all quite possibly the best things that I have ever made. I am so excited to make these tasty bars again!

Gooey Nutella Bars!

I brought these to a Fourth of July Party and everyone loved them! I loved them too- they were sooo gooey and delicious.

 Gooey Peanut Butter Reece’s Bars

Another Gooey Bar! Oh it’s so good. I absolutely love Recces!

 S’mores Bars

While I know I sound like a broken record, here these bars were amazing!

I honestly cannot choose my favorite between these three bars- and blogging about them now is making me excited to go home and do some baking! I’m thinking I’m going to make at least one of these bars, surgery some zucchini or pumpkin bread, and a new cookie recipe (I already have one in mind :).

Speaking of cookies…. :) Here are a few of my favorite cookie recipes:

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chunk Cookies

I absolutely loved these cookies! They’re big, soft, and fluffy, and I love the sweet and salty combination. Make them! :)

Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

I will confess that I will always choose chocolate over oatmeal raisin, but maybe not with these cookies! I made these for a teacher who really likes oatmeal raisin cookies, and I couldn’t believe how much I loved these! They’re so soft and have a great texture. Love them!

There are so many recipes I could post on this post, but I didn’t want to overwhelm you too much! Check out my Recipe Page to see all my bars, cookies, cupcakes, cakes, and other desserts!

Do you have any desserts that you have to make every year around Christmas time?

 

Cheesecake Stuffed Strawberries

Whew! I needed to take a break from editing the wedding I shot this past weekend, clinic so I decided to finally finish this post! I have been really busy lately, adiposity between a trip to Iowa, lots of photography, teaching piano lessons, and watching Avatar (ahhhh Legend of Korra!), but it’s a good kind of busy, the kind that keeps you entertained all day during the summer.

I made these little treats a couple of weeks ago. Don’t they look cute? They were tasty, easy to make, and you don’t need an oven, which is great if your oven is broken (like mine) or if you just don’t feel like turing it on when it’s so hot outside.

To make these strawberry treats, you have to core the strawberries. I saw a tip online somewhere that showed that you can use a piping tip to hollow out strawberries. I used a combination of a piping tip and a knife to hollow them out- easy peasy!

Once you have your hollowed strawberries, you need to fill them with your “cheesecake” mixture. I put the filling in a piping bag and piped it in. After I piped in the filling, I was impatient and started drizzling chocolate on right away. But this made quite a mess so I would recommend putting the filled strawberries in the fridge for a while.

That’s Penny, out kitty. Isn’t she cute? Don’t let that innocent face fool you, she’s a bit of a demon cat (unless she’s sleeping ;).

My poor puppy hasn’t been able to catch a break since we got her…she attacks him all the time and he’s to wimpy sweet to fight back! I hope they get along better as she gets older and (hopefully) mellows out :)

So anyways, I hope you’re having a wonderful summer! I’d love to hear what’s going on in your life. Oh and make these little treats! They’re yummy :)

Cheesecake Stuffed Strawberries

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb. large strawberries
  • 8 oz. cream cheese
  • 3-6 tbs powdered sugar (depends on how sweet you want the filling)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • chocolate chips, toffee bits, or whatever else you want to sprinkle on them

 Directions:

  1. Use a piping tip/knife to core the strawberries.
  2. In a large bowl, cream together the cream cheese, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract.
  3. Use a piping bag and tip to fill the strawberries with the cheesecake filling.
  4. If you want to drizzle melted chocolate or top the strawberries with chocolate chips/toffee bits, etc, put the strawberries in the freezer/fridge until the filling gets a little more firm. Otherwise, enjoy!
  5. Store in the refrigerator.

Enjoy!

Peanut Butter Chocolate Pretzel Truffles

The other night, buy my parents, ambulance 14 year old sister (Celina), and I watched When Harry Met Sally (love that movie!).

During the movie, my mom and I were getting such a kick making Hugh Grant jokes.

“Hey, Hugh. How Hugh doing Hugh?”

Hahahaha because Hugh sounds like you?!

We thought we were really funny.

After the movie was over, it was late. My mom said to Celina, “Bedtime, it’s after midnight. You’re a Republican!”

We all stared at her. Ummm what?

And then we slowly realized that she had said, “Bedtime, it’s after midnight, you’re a pumpkin!”

But Celina and I were already cracking up. I had to tell facebook about the conversation (of course) and we were hysterically laughing and typing incoherant things. And since I was the only one logged in to facebook, it looks like I commented on my own status 20 times.

Here are some gems from that conversation:

Mom: I wasn’t TRYING to say “pumpkin,” I DID say “pumpkin.”

Me: Hugh said republican!  <-Get it!? ;)

Mom: After midnight hugh turn into a Republican. Documented scientific fact.

Me: Now Celina’s saying “snatus” whatever that is

Then another person commented saying “I may be sleep deprived too but that is sooo funny!!”

Me: you have no idea the encouragment that gave us! Que hysterical laughter

Me: hahhaaa not que, cue! <-is that even real?

Me: I used to be smart once. That’s all I have to say.

Me: Celina just unliked this post just so she could like it again. HAHAHhahahahahaahahahahaha

Now that I’ve already wasted part of your day relating this (hysterical) story, I’ll make it up to you by giving you the recipe for these truffles. I’m not crazy about these photos, but I wanted to share them because they tasted pretty yummy!

Peanut Butter Chocolate Pretzel Truffles

Ingredients:

3 cups pretzel pieces
1 cup creamy peanut butter
8 oz cream cheese
2 tablespoon butter, at room temperature
1/2 to 1 cup of mini chocolate chips
4 tablespoons light brown sugar
4 tablespoons powdered sugar
Pinch of salt
1 package of chocolate bark

Directions:

  1. Crush up the pretzels in a ziplock bag in to very small pieces.
  2. Cream together the peanut butter, cream cheese, butter, powdered sugar, and brown sugar. Add the pretzel pieces and mini chocolate chips to the mixture and mix thoroughly.
  3. Using a small cookie scoop, shape the peanut butter mixture into small balls. Place the balls on a wax-lined cookie sheet. After you’ve finished with all the mixture, place the balls into the refrigerator and chill for 30 minutes (or more).
  4. When you’re ready to dip the truffles, microwave the chocolate bark until it’s completely smooth.
  5. One at a time, dip the peanut butter balls into the melted chocolate and use a spoon to make sure it’s all covered. Repeat with all of the balls.
  6. Return the truffles to the refrigerator and chill again until the chocolate is hard (if you use chocolate bark to cover them, it should only take a couple of minutes).
  7. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Enjoy!

Gooey Peanut Butter Reese’s Bars

Last week at school we had a “senior shadow day” where we were supposed to spend the day learning from someone who works in a profession in which we are interested. I contacted Jen and Chris Creed, advice two wonderful and kind photographers who I have been lucky enough to get to know the past couple of months. I have to admit I was nervous about asking if I could shadow them because I didn’t want to be annoying, visit but they were so kind and enthusiastic about it. They asked me what I wanted to get out of the experience, what I wanted to improve on, and got a couple for us to shoot in Downtown Franklin. The photo session was so fun! I’m posting a couple of my favorites from the session (you can see the full session on my photography website).

I loved watching Jen and Chris shoot. They really try to push their creativity and some of my favorite shots are things I never would have taken on my own. Absolutely check out their photography! They are amazing people and super talented :)

I knew I wanted to make something for Jen and Chris as a thank you for allowing me to spend the day with them. After checking that they both like peanut butter (which they probably thought was a little strange ;) I made these Gooey Peanut Butter Reese’s Bars. Oh my goodness. These were incredible!

I had asked my dad to get the ingredients for the bars while he was at the store, and he accidentally got fat-free sweetened condensed milk! I was afraid the bars wouldn’t taste good or bake as well with the fat-free version, but I asked Jenny from Picky Palate on Twitter what she thought and she said it would be fine. And it was! So you shouldn’t feel guilty about eating these…they’re practically a health food ;)

Jen and Chris loved these, as did my family. The next day I brought in leftovers to school and my teachers and classmates loved them as well. Success all around! I will have to say that you do want to eat these at room temperature…I usually like things when they’re all warm and melty but definitely preferred these after they had cooled down the next day.

Gooey Peanut Butter Reese’s Bars

Ingredients:

1 box yellow cake mix
1 stick butter, softened
1 egg
1 cup chocolate chips
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed milk (fat-free works great!)
15-20 (or however many you want) Reese’s peanut butter cups, coarsely chopped

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 9×13 inch baking dish with foil and spray generously with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together the cake mix, butter, and egg until a dough forms. Press the dough onto the bottom of the prepared baking pan.Top the dough with chocolate chips.
  3. In a small bowl, stir together the sweetened condensed milk and peanut butter until well combined and pour over the dough. Top with the chopped Reese’s.
  4. Bake at 350 for 23-30 minutes, until the bars are golden brown and the center is set (doesn’t giggle when you move the pan). Let them cool completely before you cut them into squares.

Enjoy!

Note: The original recipe says the cook time is 23-25 minutes. I ended up cooking mine for closer to 30 because the bars wouldn’t set. When you take them out of the oven, they will be incredibly gooey. That’s ok, just let them cool completely (I know…willpower) before you eat them. It’s worth the wait!

Source: Kevin and Amanda

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...