Saturday, November 7, 2015

Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter No-Bake Cookies

These cookies are so good!  I don't usually like no-bake that much, but these are way yummy.  And not overly sweet.  The recipe I adapted to fit what I wanted called for 2 cups of sugar.  These have half of that and more chocolate flavor because there is twice as much cocoa powder (hence the dark chocolate).  Rich and tasty, without making you sick! (always a bonus in my book)  Plus there's protein from the milk and peanut butter, lots of fiber from the oats, and healthy fats from the coconut oil.  They're practically not even a dessert once you add all those things together, so bon appetit ;) 

1 cup sugar (could try honey or agave!)
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup coconut oil
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
3 cups old-fashioned oats
2/3 cup peanut butter (I prefer Adam's crunchy peanut butter)
1 Tbs vanilla extract
Large pinch of salt
semi-sweet chocolate chips (optional)

Prepare a baking sheet or cutting board with wax or parchment paper.
Bring sugar, milk, coconut oil, and cocoa powder to a boil in medium sauce pan, over medium heat, stirring occasionally.  Let boil for 1 minute.
Remove from heat and add remaining ingredients, stirring to incorporate everything.
Drop tablespoonfuls onto prepared baking sheet.  If you want them, sprinkle a few chocolate chips on top of each cookie, making sure they stick to the cookie.
Let cool at room temperature for about 30 minutes.  If I'm in a rush to eat them, I'll stick them in the freezer for about 10 minutes.

Friday, October 30, 2015

5 Minute Artisan Bread

I think this is called 5 minute bread because it literally takes about 5 minutes to mix it up.  However, rising time and "curing" time can be anywhere from 2 1/2 hours to 14 days.  Just a heads up

Recipe from Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day by Jeff Hertzberg & Zoe Francois
3 c. lukewarm water
1 1/2 tbs yeast
1 1/2 tbs kosher salt
6 1/2 c. unsifted flour (white or wheat)

Add all ingredients to mixer or regular mixing bowl (add flour all at once, measuring it into your measuring cup by gently scooping it with a spoon and leveling off--do not press flour down, it throws off measurements).  

Mix with a wooden spoon or in your mixer until everything is well incorporated.  Don't knead the dough, it isn't necessary.  Dough will be wet and loose enough to conform to bowl.

Cover with a lid or plastic wrap (but not airtight, because the pressure will become to great, and the lid could explode off) and allow to rise at room temperature until it begins to collapse (about 2 hrs). 

You can use any of the dough now, or you can store the dough in your fridge, covered, up to 14 days.  The longer it's stored, the more the flavour and texture improves, becoming more like sourdough.

When you are ready to use the dough, prepare your baking pan or tray.  Sprinkle dough with flour.  Pull up and cut off a grapefruit-size piece of dough, using a serrated knife.  

Hold dough in your hands, adding more flour as needed so it doesn't stick to your hands.  Gently stretch surface of dough around to bottom on all 4 sides, rotating dough as you go.  The end product will be smooth and cohesive on top, though the bottom may seem bunched (that's fine!).  It should only take about a minute to form the dough. 

Rest loaf for about 40 minutes.  Depending on the age of the dough, it may not appear to rise much, which is fine.  20 minutes before baking, preheat oven to 450 degrees.  Place an empty broiler tray that can hold water on a shelf in the oven that won't interfere with where you place your bread.

Dust top of bread with flour.  Slash a quarter inch deep cross across the top using a serrated knife.

After a 20 minute preheat, you're ready to bake.  Put your loaf in the oven.  Then pour about 1 cup of HOT water (from tap) into the tray you placed in the oven when you turned it on, and close the oven quickly to trap the steam (this gives the bread a nice, chewy, artisan crust).  

 Bake for 30 minutes or until crust is browned and firm to the touch.  

*This is a basic recipe.  You can add any number of things to the dough to create a sweet bread (e.g. raisins & cinnamon) or a savory bread (e.g. chopped garlic and a couple Tbs of rosemary & thyme, kalamata olives).  

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Hearty Vegetable Quinoa Chili

I got to try this recipe at a relief society activity, and it was delicious.  I am putting it on here so I know where to find it when I decide to make it :)  

1 cup uncooked quinoa
2 Tbs olive oil
1 Large onion, chopped
5 stalks celery, chopped
5 medium carrots, peeled & sliced
6 sweet peppers, seeded & chopped
1 zucchini, quartered & sliced
2 yellow zucchini, quartered and sliced
4 cloves fresh garlic, minced
pinch of salt
32 oz. broth (chicken or vegetable)
2 15oz. cans diced tomatoes
2 cans white beans, drained & rinsed
2 Tbs ground cumin
1 1/2 Tbs chili powder
1 tsp hot sauce
1 tsp fresh lime juice
Salt & pepper to taste
Garlic salt to taste
Parsley to taste

Directions:  Saute onion, celery, peppers, carrots, and squash until softened, then add broth, beans, spices, and quinoa.  simmer 20 minutes or until quinoa is cooked through.  

Saturday, September 12, 2015

Apple Oatmeal Muffins

I've been trying to cut out processed foods as much as possible from our diet and was looking for a way to use up a few of the 40 apples I have sitting in my fridge taking up valuable space, and I came across this amazing whole-grain, healthy breakfast muffin.  Low sugar, lots of fiber and flavor.  This is definitely my all-time favorite apple-muffin recipe I've made, so I had to add it to the blog so I know where to find it next time.  I hope you like it too...

Recipe by

  • 1¼ cups whole wheat flour
  • 1¼ cups old-fashioned oats
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon cardamom
  • ⅛ teaspoon ginger
  • 1 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • ½ cup light coconut milk with the juice of half a lemon (or low fat buttermilk)
  • ½ cup packed muscovado sugar (or brown sugar)
  • 2 tablespoons melted coconut oil (or vegetable/canola oil)
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 small Gala apples, chopped into small pieces
  • turbinado (raw) sugar and nutmeg, for sprinkling on top
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Line a 12 cup muffin tin with muffin wrappers or spray with nonstick cooking spray. My non-stick muffin tin works so well I didn't need either.
  3. In a large bowl, combine flour, oats, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, cardamom and ginger.
  4. In a medium bowl combine applesauce, buttermilk, sugar, oil, egg and vanilla extract.
  5. Make a well in the dry ingredients and pour in your applesauce mixture. Stir until just moist.
  6. Fold in the chopped apples. Fill muffin cups ⅔ to ¾ full.
  7. Sprinkle raw sugar and a light dusting of nutmeg on top of the muffins. (this extra punch of spice is phenomenal when you bite into it! a pinch of extra cinnamon on top of each muffin is tasty too!)
  8. Bake for 16-18 minutes.
  • Adapted from Joy the Baker's Oatmeal Blueberry Applesauce Muffins.
  • Yields about 12 muffins.
  • Since these muffins contain fresh fruit, they will spoil more quickly than regular muffins. Try storing them in the refrigerator if you don't intend to finish them within a day or two, or store them in the freezer for longer-term storage.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Jalapeno Cheddar Cornbread


3 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup yellow cornmeal
1/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons baking powder
2 teaspoons kosher salt
2 cups milk
3 extra-large eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted, plus extra to grease the pan
8 ounces aged extra-sharp Cheddar, grated, divided
1/3 cup chopped scallions, white and green parts, plus extra for garnish, 3 scallions
3 tablespoons seeded and minced fresh jalapeno peppers


Combine the flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, combine the milk, eggs, and butter. With a wooden spoon, stir the wet ingredients into the dry until most of the lumps are dissolved. Don't overmix! Mix in 2 cups of the grated Cheddar, the scallions and jalapenos, and allow the mixture to sit at room temperature for 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9 by 13 by 2-inch baking pan.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan, smooth the top, and sprinkle with the remaining grated Cheddar and extra chopped scallions. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool and cut into large squares. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Recipe by Ina Garten, Barefoot Contessa at Home