Category Archives: Dessert

The Past Unspoken

Chocolate Stuffed Muffins

Chocolate Stuffed Muffin

Oh, chocolate – you are amazing.  Which is why I was rather thrilled to see that Random Recipes - hosted by the fantastic Dom of Belleau Kitchen along with the Chocolate Log Blog (cuz chocolate!!!) -  was going chocolate this month, in addition to the normal rules.  I only have two dedicated dessert books, but found that a number of my books had at least one chocolate recipe tucked away.  In the end a non-dessert book won out, and with that these delicious chocolate filled muffins from 1000 Vegetarian Recipes.  I did make a slight adjustment to the recipe, as the basic muffin directions called for zest which is something I avoid due to an allergy.  I also decided to go with milk chocolate chips, while the original recipe didn’t say one way or another.

The Past Unspoken

Serves: Yields 12 Standard Muffins

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 1/2 cups buttermilk
  • 3 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup milk chocolate chips

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 and line or grease 12 standard sized muffin cups.
  2. In a large bowl mix together the flours, sugar, salt, baking powder, and baking soda. Set Aside
  3. Beat the egg in a small bowl, then mix in the buttermilk followed by the melted butter. Quickly mix in to the dry ingredients, mixing until just wet.
  4. Spoon 1 full tbsp of batter into muffin tin, then place 4-5 chips in the middle and top with another full tbsp of batter.
  5. Bake for 25 minutes, or until muffins are brown. Allow to cool in pan for 5 minutes before removing to the cooling rack. Serve and enjoy!
http://www.dancingveggies.com/blog/2014/02/the-past-unspoken.html

The best thing about this recipe is that the technique can be used for making other types of filled/stuffed muffins.  I could see pieces of fruit, jam, or caramel (!) doing rather nicely in this delicious muffin – or being really naughty and putting brownie or cookie dough in the middle!  If I was to do chocolate again I would probably use something more like a chocolate nugget as the chips didn’t really give it as much chocolate as I was expecting – or use a chocolate spread like Nutella!

Been Waiting

Poached Cinnamon Caramel Apples

Poached Apples

Poaching is nothing to new to me, at least not anymore.  Which is why when I first saw poaching as the theme for /52weeksofcooking I really wasn’t that worried.  Until I tried to figure out something to poach that: 1) was vegetarian and 2) I hadn’t poached before.  This eliminated a fair amount of things, so I started checking out my cook books to see if any of them could offer insight.  In doing so I found more than a few recipes for poached pears, which I’m not a fan of, but realized I could use that same concept on apples.  Unsure of how they would turn out I grabbed three varieties at the store: granny smith, honeycrisps, and pink ladies – figuring I would test them all and see what worked the best.

Been Waiting

Serves 2-4

Ingredients

  • 2 Pink Lady Apples (or Granny Smith), cored and sliced
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp caramel syrup (I used torani)
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cinnamon stick

Instructions

  1. Add all ingredients to a large pot and bring the liquid to a low simmer. Cook for 20 minutes, or until the flesh of the apple is soft.
  2. Remove the apples using a slotted spoon (or pasta scoop) and place over (or in) your desired meal.
  3. Serve and enjoy!
http://www.dancingveggies.com/blog/2014/02/been-waiting.html

In the end the pink ladies won for me – the skin stayed crisp while the flesh was moist and delicious.  Plus it still had the same tart/sweet contrast as the granny smiths, which become all soft.  The honeycrisps were just a disaster, falling apart in the pan and having to be skimmed out…which was a total pain. I served the pink ladies over oatmeal (pictured), while the granny smiths topped a mini-dutch baby.

Thinking About You

Dark Chocolate Chocolate Cookies

Dark Chocolate Chocolate Cookies

Warning: If you do not love chocolate this is not the blog post for you.  However if you have a sweet tooth that won’t settle for anything less but the good stuff then stick around.  This cookies have been a work in progress for a few months now, as was having a hard time finding the right balance – and then I decided to throw caution to the wind and grabbed some super dark chocolate bars.  While I’m not normally a fan of the darker chocolates, Joey is so I knew that worst case scenario he would enjoy them! So I cracked those chocolate bars up in to chocolate chunks and went for it.  Thankfully I had some special guests that night who were willing to test out the newest recipe.  Success!

Thinking About You

Serves: Yields approx 32 cookies

Ingredients

  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 tbsp sour cream
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg, room temperature
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 1 cup dark chocolate chips (or 1 cup broken up dark chocolate candy bar)

Instructions

  1. Stir together the flour and baking soda and set aside.
  2. Cream together the butter, sour cream, and sugar for at least three minutes. Add the egg, vanilla, salt, and cocoa powder then mix.
  3. Add the flour mixture and mix until just combined. Then fold in the chocolate chips/chocolate chunks. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and place in fridge for at least 30 minutes.
  4. Preheat oven to 375
  5. Place walnut size dough drops on cookie sheet leaving space between the cookies. Bake for 8-10 minutes, then allow to cool on the sheet for 5 minutes before removing to a cooling rack.
  6. Serve and enjoy!
http://www.dancingveggies.com/blog/2014/02/thinking-about-you.html

I might tweak this again in the future, maybe half dark chocolate and half white chocolate, but then again why mess with chocolate perfection?  The trick with these is letting them have time in the fridge to relax and chill – it keeps them from attempting to become one large chocolate mess which might have happened with one of the test recipes.  Also, when the cookies come out the center will look a bit soft but that’s okay as they will firm up while cooking on the sheet.

It’s Cold Out

Vegan Chocolate Cookies

Vegan Chocolate Cookies

Last post from 2013′s /52weeksofcooking and hoping oh so much that I stay on track in 2014, and get everything finished in 2014.  The last challenge posed a bit of a question for me as I had done my “holiday tradition” cooking for Thanksgiving.  However Christmas Eve wound up giving me the perfect opportunity to continue what is fast becoming a holiday tradition – vegan cookies for my sister(s)-in-law.  The first few years I stuck to a vegan sugar cookie recipe I found online but this time I wanted to try something different, even though I knew that would increase the risks of something going wrong.  My biggest fear was hard cookies, so I took every precaution I could think of to insure soft fluffy cookies – and it worked!

It’s Cold Out

Serves: Yields approx 3 dozen cookies

Ingredients

  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 cup soy butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup coffee, room temperature
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup powder sugar

Instructions

  1. In a medium bowl mix together the flour, cocoa powder, and baking soda. Set Aside
  2. Cream together the butter and white sugar for three minutes, then mix in the oil along with the coffee and salt. Once fully mixed add in the dry ingredients, mixing until just incorporated - be careful to not over mix. Cover the dough and place in fridge for at least 30 minutes.
  3. Preheat oven to 375.
  4. Pour the powdered sugar in a shallow bowl. Remove the dough from the fridge and form in to walnut sized balls. Roll in the powdered sugar than place on a non-stick cookie sheet.
  5. Bake cookies for 9-10 minutes, then allow to sit on cookie sheet for an additional 3 minutes before removing to a cooling rack. Enjoy!
http://www.dancingveggies.com/blog/2014/01/its-cold-out.html

I’m not sure if it was the chilled dough or just dumb luck but the cookies were perfection.  The outsides were crisp with moist insides, almost brownie like – and the powdered sugar help cut down on the extreme chocolate taste.  These might not be the cookies I made with my family growing up, but I can easily see these being the cookies I make with my family going forward.

Now time to focus on 2014!  Fingers crossed I won’t fall so far behind this year :-)

Of Forever

Vegan Rice Pudding

Vegan Rice Pudding

Welcome to 2014!  I have high hopes for this year, as well as some lofty goals for myself.   In blogging world I’m hoping to up my posting schedule – and with that plan recipes in advance so that events in “real life” don’t effect my blogging world.  I had hoped to do this last year but as usual life got in the way, however I’m starting 2014 on the right foot with six posts mostly written and ready to go!  My ultimate plan for this year is to have three posts a week with 52weeksofcooking posts every Thursday in an attempt to keep that organized.  The first Monday of every month (starting in February) will still be Secret Recipe Club (!!!) with subsequent Mondays featuring other monthly blog challenges, including a return to Dom’s Random Recipes.   With that plan I’m currently looking to join at least two more monthly link-ups, so let me know if you have any suggestions :-D  This will leave one weekly post to highlight whatever ingredient or cooking technique or new toy or restaurant that I’m currently enjoying – which is where today’s recipe falls.

Ever since Joe and I started dated we have rotated off the major holidays with our respective families, and this year we decided to take advantage of (finally) having a dining room and hosting both of our family around the winter holidays.  First on the schedule was Joe’s family, for which I did an Italian dinner featuring a mix of old and new recipes.   One of the bigger challenges for me was figuring out a simple and delicious vegan dessert that could either be done well in advance or using my slow cooker – since I knew my burners and oven would already be occupied.  After tossing around a few ideas I decided to go with a Vegan Rice Pudding, which I could make in my slow cooker and then transfer to the fridge until it was time to serve.

Rice Pudding

Serves: Serves 6-8

Ingredients

  • 1 cup long grain white rice
  • 4 cups coconut milk (original)
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp melted soy "butter" (unsalted)

Instructions

  1. In a 4 QT (or bigger) slow cooker stir together the rice and coconut milk, along with the sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, and salt. Pour the melted butter over top and cover.
  2. Cook on high for 3 hours or on low for 5 1/2 - 6 hours.
  3. Serve warm or cold - depending on taste!
http://www.dancingveggies.com/blog/2014/01/of-forever.html

This recipe was a HUGE hit!  While I was more than a bit nervous about it, since I had never made rice pudding vegan or otherwise before – but it was fantastic.  It was also delicious the next day when my SiL enjoyed the few remains as a post shopping snack.  I can easily see this recipe becoming a staple, and enjoy trying different variations in the future.

I’m looking forward to seeing what 2014 has in store – new city, (hopefully) new job, and lots of new food!