Chocolate and espresso is a subtle combination. In many recipes a little espresso or coffee is added to enhance the chocolate flavor. The espresso compliments the chocolate and these cookies play on that idea very nicely. The batter is made with cocoa and espresso powders along with melted chocolate. Solid chocolate chips are mixed into the batter so any cravings you might have had for chocolate will probably be satisfied. After the cookies are baked the outside forms a glossy layer that cracks apart. The inside isn’t really like a normal cookie’s but rather like the inside of a brownie. I was really happy with how these turned out and next time I have a chocolate craving I know which recipe to turn to!
Oatmeal raisin cookies got a bad rep when I was a kid. They weren’t very sweet, had a dry crumbly texture and just couldn’t stand up to classic chocolate chip cookies. These cookies give chocolate chip a run for it’s money. The cherries and chocolate go so well together and the texture was soft and not too crumbly. The cherries really take this cookie to the next level because they added a little bit of tartness to balance the sweet. I will definitely be making these again! The recipe makes 5 1/2 dozen so I cut the recipe in half. If you wanted to make the larger amount, just double the measurements below.
Peanut butter and chocolate is just a perfect combination. It brings together sweet, salty and chocolatey so what’s not to like? My boyfriend recently made homemade peanut butter so he wanted to try making a dessert out of it. He made these fantastic peanut butter cups based on Reese’s candy only with dark chocolate. The only complication was melting the chocolate chips smoothly, but he was able to figure out a way to mimic a double boiler by using a flat bowl and a sauce pot. It melted the chocolate smoothly without risking burning the chocolate or creating a lumpy consistency. The peanut butter cups were ridiculously good. The chocolate was just a basic semi-sweet chocolate chip and the hero was the homemade peanut butter. If you have a food processor, it’s one of the best things to try making at home. You can use store bought peanut butter for this recipe, but if you have time to make your own for it I would highly recommend it!
It seems like in general the people who spend time in the kitchen are either cooks or bakers. I tend to fall into the first category but my boyfriend is slowly turning into the latter. Lately he’s been experimenting with different desserts so he decided to try making red velvet cupcakes for Valentine’s Day! The cupcakes turned out so well! The cream cheese frosting went perfectly with the chocolatey cupcake. The inside was a rich, red color that was fluffy and light. The original recipe yielded 30 cupcakes but we decided to make 1 dozen instead. Surprisingly, the odd measurements didn’t cause any problems in the baking process. It was a wonderful treat for Valentine’s Day!
A delicious bowl of soup is not complete without warm bread to dip in the broth! These rolls were a perfect accompaniment to the Italian Pasta Bean soup I had the other night. The savory thyme and lemon zest make this recipe stand out and it is worth the extra time to prepare. I also really liked the amount of black pepper added to the dough. The insides are soft and fluffy, especially when they’re still warm from the oven! Since this recipe is yeast based it takes about an hour and 45 minutes for the dough to complete 2 rises.
I was looking for a tasty snack–something to munch on during the day that had a good amount of filling protein but also packed with flavor. I came across a recipe for baked chickpeas and was intrigued because I always liked them in stews and soups but had never tried them on their own. The chickpeas are lightly tossed with olive oil, rolled in a spice blend, and baked until they become dry and crispy. They remind me a little of popcorn but so much healthier and tastier! The spice blend can be adjusted to your own tastes, whether you want it saltier, sweeter, or spicier. I preferred the spicy and salty, but I plan to experiment more and see what I like best.
Chocolate and mint is one of my favorite combinations when it comes to anything chocolate. These cookies are awesome because there’s chocolate chips and chocolate cocoa mixed into the dough so there’s twice as much chocolate flavor. The intense chocolatey-ness of these cookies is combined with mint extract and the result is just so good! It’s a simple recipe that only takes maybe 25 minutes to whip together and bake. The inside of the cookies melt in your mouth while the outside has just a tiny bit of crunch around the edges. The aroma of mint and chocolate was intoxicating so I definitely will be making these again. I would recommend trying one of these fresh out of the oven…so heavenly!
Chicken Piccata is a classic Italian pasta dish served with chicken in a lemon, butter and caper sauce. The chicken is pounded thin, lightly breaded and browned in a pan. Pounding the chicken thin is an important step because it helps cook the chicken more evenly. The drippings from the chicken are used to make the savory pan sauce which, in my opinion, is the highlight of the dish. The sauce is a simple combination of white wine, butter, lemon, and capers. Making everything only takes about half hour so this is a great meal when you’re short on time for dinner!
If I were to have any season all year I would have it be Fall. Unfortunately, it is now January (my least favorite month) and there’s no way to bring fall back outside. However, I can make food that reminds me of my favorite season and what could recall that season better than butternut squash? Butternut squash is a tasty snack when it is sliced very thin and roasted until just browned and crispy. The slices of squash are quickly boiled, patted dry and tossed with olive oil and sage in a bowl. Then they are baked in the oven for about 20 minutes, so this is a great recipe to prepare if you’re short on time for dinner.
I first heard about this recipe from my mom who had been talking about this “great chicken recipe that uses black lemons.” I had never made Saudi Arabian food before so I was looking forward to trying out a new dish. The recipe uses black lemons which is different from preserved lemons which I make pretty often. The black lemons are actually limes that are dried and turned black. They taste sour and citrusy, but the fact they are dried gives them a slightly smoky, fermented taste. The black lemons are used to flavor the dish like a bay leaf but aren’t really eaten (though they do soften up after cooking so I suppose you could eat them). The recipe is simple and takes roughly about 30 minutes to prepare. I loved how the black lemons flavored the chicken, tomatoes and onions. The chicken is served with rice and garnished with sauteed slivered almonds, golden raisins, onions and seasoned with cinnamon. All of the ingredients worked so well together and I have a feeling I will be exploring other ways to use that tasty almond and raisin garnish.