Archive for November, 2011

PB&J Cookies

by on Nov.30, 2011, under Cookies, Desserts

1/4 cup dried cranberries
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
1 cup canned white cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
1/4 cup reduced-fat peanut butter, such as Better’n Peanut Butter
2 tablespoons agave nectar
3 large egg whites
4 packets (about 4 grams) powdered stevia, such as SweetLeaf
1/4 cup puffed millet cereal, such as Arrowhead Mills
1/4 cup peanut butter chips
Nonstick cooking spray

1. Preheat the oven to 375°F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper and spray lightly with cooking spray. Set aside.
2. In a small bowl, add the cranberries. Pour in hot water to cover and allow to soak.
3. Meanwhile, in the bowl of a food processor, combine the vanilla, cocoa, cannellini beans, peanut butter, and agave. Blend until the mixture is smooth, about 3 minutes, scraping down the side of the bowl halfway through blending.
4. In the bowl of a mixer fitted with a whip attachment, beat the egg whites until they form soft peaks. Gradually beat in the stevia. Continue to beat the whites until they are creamy and nearly stiff. Add one-third of the egg-white mixture to the cocoa-bean mixture in the food processor. Blend to combine, about 30 seconds. In 2 batches, fold the lightened cocoa mixture into the egg whites until they are almost fully combined.
5. Drain the liquid from the cranberries and then add the cranberries to the batter. Add the millet. Fold the batter until the cranberries and millet are evenly dispersed and the cocoa mixture is completely incorporated.
6. Drop mounded spoonfuls of the batter onto the prepared sheets. Spread the batter out to form cookies about 2 inches in diameter. Sprinkle the peanut butter chips on top of the cookies.
7. Bake for 12 to 14 minutes, rotating the pans one turn halfway through baking. Using a metal spatula, transfer the cookies to wire racks to cool.

Makes 20 Cookies @ 55 calories each

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Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

by on Nov.13, 2011, under Cookies, Desserts

1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar
1 cup butter or margarine, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 egg
2 cups quick-cooking oats
1 1/2 cups all-purpose or unbleached flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips (6 oz)
1 cup chopped nuts, if desired

Heat oven to 350°F. In large bowl, stir brown sugar and butter until blended. Stir in vanilla and egg until light and fluffy. Stir in oats, flour, baking soda and salt; stir in chocolate chips and nuts.

Onto ungreased cookie sheet, drop dough by rounded tablespoonfuls about 2 inches apart.

Bake 9 to 11 minutes or until golden brown. Cool slightly; remove from cookie sheet to wire rack.

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Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

by on Nov.11, 2011, under Cookies, Desserts

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
1 cup white sugar
1 cup light brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup canned pumpkin puree
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
2 cups (12-ounce bag) milk chocolate chips, not semisweet
Nonstick cooking spray or parchment paper

Heat the oven to 350 degrees F. Spray cookie sheets with nonstick spray or line them with parchment paper.

Using a mixer, beat the butter until smooth. Beat in the white and brown sugars, a little at a time, until the mixture is light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs 1 at a time, then mix in the vanilla and pumpkin puree. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and cloves. Slowly beat the flour mixture into the batter in thirds. Stir in the chips. Scoop the cookie dough by heaping tablespoons onto the prepared cookie sheets and bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the cookies are browned around the edges. Remove the cookie sheets from the oven and let them rest for 2 minutes. Take the cookies off with a spatula and cool them on wire racks.

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Pecan Pie

by on Nov.08, 2011, under Desserts, Pies


1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup cold butter (1 stick), diced
1 large egg, lightly beaten
Flour, for rolling the dough

5 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 cup packed light brown sugar
3/4 cup light corn syrup
1/2 teaspoon fine salt
2 cups chopped toasted pecans
1 to 2 tablespoons bourbon
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
3 eggs, lightly beaten

Make the dough by hand: In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, and salt. Using your fingers, work the butter into the dry ingredients until it resembles yellow cornmeal mixed with bean-sized bits of butter. (If the flour/butter mixture gets warm, refrigerate it for 10 minutes before proceeding.) Add the egg and stir the dough together with a fork or by hand in the bowl. If the dough is dry, sprinkle up to a tablespoon more of cold water over the mixture.

Alternatively, make the dough in a food processor. With the machine fitted with the metal blade, pulse the flour, sugar, and salt until combined. Add the butter and pulse until it resembles yellow cornmeal mixed with bean-sized bits of butter, about 10 times. Add the egg and pulse 1 to 2 times; don’t let the dough form into a ball in the machine. (If the dough is very dry add up to a tablespoon more of cold water.) Remove the bowl from the machine, remove the blade, and bring the dough together by hand.

Form the dough into a disk, wrap with plastic wrap, and refrigerate until thoroughly chilled, at least 1 hour.

On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough with a rolling pin into a 12-inch circle about 1/8-inch thick. Transfer the dough to a 9-inch pie pan and trim the edges, leaving about an extra inch hanging over the edge. Tuck the overhanging dough underneath itself to form a thick edge that is even with the rim. Flute the edge as desired. Freeze the pie shell for 30 minutes.

Set separate racks in the center and lower third of oven and preheat to 400 degrees F. Put a piece of parchment paper or foil over the pie shell and fill with dried beans or pie weights. Bake on a baking sheet on the center rack until the dough is set, about 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and lift sides of the parchment paper to remove the beans. Continue baking until the pie shell is lightly golden brown, about 10 more minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees F.

While the crust is baking make the filling: In medium saucepan, combine the butter, brown sugar, corn syrup, and salt. Bring to a boil over medium heat, and stirring constantly, continue to boil for 1 minute. Remove from the heat and stir in the nuts, bourbon, and the vanilla. Set the mixture aside to cool slightly, about 5 minutes. (If the crust has cooled, return it to the oven for 5 minutes to warm through.) Whisk the beaten eggs into the filling until smooth. Put the pie shell on a sheet pan and pour the filling into the hot crust.

Bake on the lower oven rack until the edges are set but the center is still slightly loose, about 40 to 45 minutes. (If the edges get very dark, cover them with aluminum foil half way during baking.) Cool on a rack. Serve slightly warm or room temperature.

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Puppy Chow

by on Nov.03, 2011, under Cookies, Desserts

1/2 cup peanut butter
1/4 cup butter
1 cup chocolate chips
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
9 cups Crispix cereal (any flavor)
3 cups powdered sugar

1. Combine peanut butter, butter and chocolate chips in a microwave safe bowl.
2. Microwave for one minute then stir to blend all ingredients thoroughly. Add 1/2 teaspoon vanilla. Stir well.
3. Place the 9 cups of Crispix cereal in a very large bowl.
4. Pour the peanut butter-chocolate mixture over the cereal and toss evenly, making sure all the cereal gets a good covering.
5. Place the powdered sugar in a large zip-lock type plastic bag.
6. Add the peanut butter-chocolate cereal mixture to the bag, leaving enough room for the puppy chow to be shaken (you may have to divide the mixture into smaller batches, coating one batch at a time).
7. Shake the bag vigorously to evenly coat each piece of the puppy chow with powdered sugar.
8. Once the mixture is fully coated, place in a large serving bowl.
9. Coat any additional pieces by shaking the mixture in the powdered sugar filled bag. Add powdered sugar to the bag as needed until all the mixture is coated.

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