Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Easy Chocolate Cookies with Peanut Butter Filling

I've been a bit absent since Valentine's day, but I have a good excuse and yes there are a few good excuses still left in this world..


I can't really tell you why, not yet anyways, but soon.

So to ease you to a more forgiving state of mind I made these and you can too.

Best. Cookies. Ever.

They look all pretty and difficult, but they are cake mix cookies, which I LOVE and are super easy!!!

This is what you will need....
  • Chocolate cake mix- (I prefer Pillsbury Devils Food for these)
  • 1 stick of butter at room temperature (soft)
  • 2 egg
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • Parchment paper
  • Peanut Butter Frosting Filling.
To decorate them and make them all pretty and stuff you can also use some...
  • Melted chocolate
  • Melted Peanut butter candy melts
  • Chopped Peanuts

Pre-heat your oven to 350. In a medium sized bowl mix all the ingredients until you have a big ball of mush. It will be a bit sticky. I mix it by hand with a wooden spoon, just use a little muscle and you'll be fine.

I scoop out about a Tablespoon of mixture and roll it into a ball and the smoosh it a bit. Place on a parchment lined baking sheet and bake for about 7-8 minutes.

I use parchment paper and recommend it because it will keep them from burning on the bottoms! But if you don't have any...just keep an eye on them. When they are done they will look soft and undone, but they will firm up a bit as they cool. By the way let them cool completely before removing them.

When completely cooled, I fill a piping bag with my Peanut Butter Frosting, recipe can be found {HERE}. I just fill a decorating bag and cut the tip off to pipe a circle of frosting on one side of the cookie. Alternatively you could also fill a plastic baggie and just cut the tip off. When done attach the other side, turning it slightly to make it stick.

Now you could stop here and they would be delicious, but they taste much better when you add a little chocolate drizzle on top....

And even better with Melted Peanut Butter candy melts also drizzled on top....

And let's not forget those chopped peanuts....

Ummmm...Yes Please :)


Thursday, February 9, 2012

DIY Valentine's Day Gifts- Cupcake in a Jar

Let me just start out by stating that this is not an original idea on my part. I have seen versions of this all over the internet, but am unsure of who came up with it originally.

But since it's such a cute, easy idea....and one that can be tailored to any occasion, theme or holiday. I decided to pretty one up for Valentines Day.

This is a super easy DIY Gift idea and you can make them too!

This is what you will need:
  • Jars...any size you want.
  • Cupcakes or cake
  • Frosting
  • Red food coloring
  • Decorating bags or zip lock bags.
  • Ribbon
  • Spoons
First off bake your cupcakes, you could also make a cake and break it up to fit in the jar or if you want it super neat and all purdy; use a round cutter of sort to get uniform layered shapes. It's all up to how you want to make it.

While your cupcakes are baking tint some of your frosting pink or red. After your cupcakes have cooled, peel them from the wrapper and place one into the jar. If you are using a cake, cut layers out that will fit into the jar easily.

I tend to smoosh it down a bit, before I add in the first layer of frosting using my decorating bag. You could also use a ziplock bag with the corner cut off.

Repeat the process with as many layers and colors of frosting, until the jar is full!

I added in a swirl of red into the middle of the layer of vanilla and sprinkled some hearts shaped sprinkles on top.

Tie a pretty ribbon around the jar and pick a spoon to eat the cupcake out of the jar with. You can even tie the spoon to to the jar.

Sweet, easy and totally delish!!

Hope you enjoy!!!

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Wednesday, February 8, 2012

DIY Valentine's Day Gifts- Home Made Butter Crunch

With Valentine's Day just around the corner, I thought I would share some easy DIY (Do-it-Yourself) Valentine's Day gifts. This will be the first in a series of Holiday Inspired DIY gift ideas

Nothing is more special than a gift made with love from the kitchen......unless that is you have diamonds, or a new car, preferably a BMW to give me, or......well you get the idea :)

But when all else fails there is always butter, sugar and heat; which equals butter crunch. Buttery, sweet toffee like. After you try one piece or seven...it gets hard not to eat more. Dip it in some chocolate, sprinkle with some nuts, wrap it all sorts of pretty and you have a fabulous DIY Valentine's Day gift.

This is a recipe my Mother shared with me and there is two things you should know about it....

1- It's delicious!
2-It's REALLY easy to make

This is what you will need....

1lb of butter
3 Cups of Sugar
1/4 tsp Salt
1 Cup of nuts chopped up...I used Cashew Nuts, but Brazil nuts and almonds also work.

Chocolate or chocolate candy melts
Candy thermometer
Jelly Roll Pan..or a baking sheet with sides
Pizza cutter


In a medium sized saucepan, melt your butter and add in your sugar and salt, mix it all up.
Keep mixing, and mixing at a medium- high heat until the temp reaches 300 degrees on your candy thermometer. Add in the nuts right before it hits that temp. or else the heat will make them rancid.

You will see it turn foamy and get a lovely golden color...when it reaches 300 degrees take it off the heat and pour it into your jelly roll pan or baking sheet.

Give it a minute or two and let it set a bit.

Run your pizza cutter through it to make little squares. You will know that it has set enough if the score marks don't disappear, if they do, give it another minute and try it again, repeat if necessary. Let cool completely. When it's completely cool, it will be very easy to break into little squares

Try not to eat too many pieces.

Melt your chocolate and chop up some more nuts to sprinkle on top. You could also use colored sprinkles or whatever you choose.

Dip it into the melted chocolate and set it on a cooling rack, I put some wax paper underneath to catch the drips. Sprinkle with nuts or whatever you like before the chocolate sets.

You can dip them anyway you like, they are thick enough that you could coat one side without getting your fingers all chocolaty when you dip them.

After they have all set..package them up and give them as a small Valentine's Day gifts! This recipe makes quite a bit, so you can make a few packages up using, tins, cello bags or boxes!!!

Hope you enjoy!!!

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