Category Archives: Dessert

(Award-winning) Ghirardelli Double Chocolate Chip Cookies

Source: amygrant.wordpress.com

What can you expect on a typical Friday at work?  Maybe a staff meeting?  Tying up loose ends from the week?  Start a new project???  Well last Friday, my company shook it all up and hosted its second annual COOKIE BAKE OFF!  A little jealous?  It’s ok 😉

The rules for the contest were simple, you must bring in at least a dozen cookies and you have to bake if you want to eat.  Umm…..how could I pass up a room full of cookies??  The choice was simple, even though my cookie baking skills leave something to be desired, I was entering this contest and I would enjoy each and every morsel of it :).

So on to the recipe…what should I make?  Lucky a family friend came to the rescue with a recipe for Ghirardelli Double Chocolate Chip Cookies – no further looking necessary, those would be perfect.

I’ll be honest, I 100% waited till the last minute to make these guys.  I woke up bright and early (6:15 a.m.) on Friday morning and broke out my bowls and spoons.  The whole process was super easy, but take note, the dough does need to chill for at least an hour before slicing & baking.  Unfortunately  my oven gets as hot as Hades and the cookies has a slight “smoky” flavor to them, but over all they turned out pretty good!  They even won “Most Chocolately Cookie” – not bad for my first try at the contest “circuit” ;).

Next time I make these I’ll be sure to shorten the cooking time – which I’ve reflected below.

Ghirardelli Double Chocolate Chip Cookies

Ingredients:

  • 1 bag Ghirardelli 60% Cacao Bittersweet Chocolate Chips
  • 6 tablespoons butter
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 bag Ghirardelli Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips 

Directions:

  1. In a double boiler over hot water, melt the bittersweet chocolate chips and butter
  2. In a large bowl with electric mixer, beat eggs and sugar until thick, then stir in chocolate mixture.  I’m always worried I’ll scramble my eggs by adding hot items to them, so I added the chocolate a little at a time – who knows, this could be completely irrelevant, but I felt better doing it 🙂
  3. In small bowl, stir together flour and baking powder then add into the chocolate mixture
  4. Gently mix in semi-sweet chips 
  5. Using a sheet of plastic wrap, form dough into 2 logs, each 2 inches in diameter and about 8 inches long
  6. As dough will be very soft, use plastic wrap to hold dough in log shapes; wrap tightly and refrigerate at least 1 hour or until firm (I actually stuck these babies in the freezer for about 40 min and they were fine) 
  7. Preheat oven to 375 degrees
  8. Unwrap dough and with a sharp knife, cut into 3/4 inch slices 
  9. Place slices 1 1/2 inches apart on greased or parchment-lined cookie sheet

10. Bake for 11 minutes or until shiny crust forms on top but interior is still soft 

11. Cool on a baking sheet  (I may or may not have enjoyed a few prior to cooling 😉 )….. 

…….and enjoy!

Bon appétit!

BIG thanks to Aliza for the recipe – I will definitely be making these again :).

Now, how about a look at a few of the other tasty entries…..

Almond Joy 'Joyal' Cookies

Chocolate Cherry Surprises

Chocolate Hazelnut Cookies with White Chocolate Chips

Coconut Cookies

Ramblings of a Readhead‘s Chocolate Cracker Cookies:

Chocolate Cracker Cookies

LalLizEats‘ Yellow Cake Mix Cookies with Chocolate Chips:

Yellow Cake Mix Cookies with Chocolate Chips

Heart-healthy Chcolate Chip Cookies

Potato Chip Cookies

Snickerdoodles

PB Dots

Beardy Lollipop‘s original Raspberry Fig Newtons 🙂 :

Raspberry Fig Newtons

and the ultimate WINNER……Cowboy Cookies!  These really were awesome!

Cowboy Cookies

* Pics courtesy of Kim Moniz

Cheers to all of the participants and the judges who tasted each and every cookie!  Can’t wait for next year’s bake off!

Source: wdexpo.org

– Christina

Chocolate Cups with Raspberry Mousse

My Mother is a very special woman.  She’s incredibly smart, loving and the best cook I know :).

Being as great as she is, I wanted to make a very special and unique dessert for Mother’s Day.  I saw Bakerella’s post on these cool looking chocolate pudding cups and knew I wanted to do something similar.  Bakerella used balloons as the form for her cups – what a neat idea!  Instead of pudding though, I decided to fill them with raspberry mousse :).

Equipped with neon water balloons, semisweet chocolates and the fixin’s for some pretty sweet mousse, I embarked on this concoction.  While the finished dish looked quite impressive and tasted delish, I would absolutely think twice about making these again!  The recipe says to dip the balloons in slightly cooled chocolate to form the cups…well, apparently I didn’t let it cool enough :/.  The first two balloons popped the second they touched the chocolate and the second three popped mid-cover.  There was chocolate everywhere!  I did however manage to make six successful cups.  If you do decide to make these, word to the wise, wear an apron ;).

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/4 cups semisweet chocolate chips
  • 6 water balloons, blown-up
  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • 2 cups frozen raspberries
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • Squeeze lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon unflavored gelatin
  • 4 cups whipped cream (I used heavy cream and whipped it myself) 

Directions:

  1. In a double boiler (pyrex bowl over steaming pot ;)) melt the semisweet chocolate chips.  Let cool for at least 10 minutes (it may take longer though, but you’ve been warned!) 
  2. Line a baking sheet with wax paper and place six dollops of chocolate to serve as the standing point for the cups 
  3. Spray bottoms of water balloons with nonstick cooking spray and dip into chocolate covering the bottom 
  4. Place the balloons on the dollops of chocolate and put baking sheet in the fridge to cool for 30 min 
  5. In a saucepan combine the raspberries and sugar.  Heat and stir over medium heat until it turns to liquid (there will still be some pulp).  Squeeze a spritz of fresh lemon juice
  6. Stir in gelatin and remove from heat.  Scrape the mixture into a large bowl and let cool for 5-7 minutes.  (Don’t let it stand for longer than this, I made that mistake at first and ended up with raspberry jello…and had to start again)
  7. Mix 1 cup of the whipped cream into raspberry mixture until well combined, then fold in the remaining whipped cream
  8. Remove the chilled chocolate balloons from the fridge.  Using a pin pop the balloons and remove the “carnage” from the cups (you’ll know if you forgot to spray the bottoms with cooking spray at this point 😉 )
  9. Fills the cups with the mousse and put back in the fridge to chill for 10-15 min
  10. Decorate with raspberries and chocolate and serve right from the fridge

Bon appetit and good luck!

ALSO – I’m sure you’ve all been wondering about the cool giveaway I won last week 🙂  Well check it out over at Beardy Lollipop – I won a sweet new Beer Stein!  It’s certainly is one of a kind :).  Be sure to check out Mike’s Beardy Lollipop on the regular for unique facts, fun and some serious laughs!

-Christina

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread

Saying that I love pumpkin is probably an understatement – I really love pumpkin :).  Pumpkin pancakes with raisinetts from The Friendly Toast in Kendall Sq., Shipyard‘s Pumpkinhead Ale, New England Coffee’s pumpkin spice, pumpkin pie, pumpkin scones…anything pumpkin.  Unfortunately those tasty treats are usually only available September – November, and quite frankly that just isn’t enough time for me :).  SO, when I saw Pumpkin Chocolate Chip bread from Barbara Bakes in April, I knew it was a sign to go ahead and make some!

This recipe makes two loaves – perfect for sharing.  I brought one down to my grandmother (aww, so sweet 😉 ) and saved one for myself.

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread

Original recipe from Barbara Bakes

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 cup butter, softened (2 sticks)
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 16 oz can of pure pumpkin (I like Libby’s)
  • 1 1/2 cups chocolate chips

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and spray two medium loaf pans with Pam or other non-stick cooking spray.
2. In a medium bowl, mix the flour, spices, salt, baking soda, and
baking powder and set aside.
3. In a separate larger bowl, cream the butter and sugar with a hand mixer until
fluffy, about two minutes.  This is MUCH easier if you’ve let the butter soften.  Mixing can also be done in a stand mixer.

4.  Add eggs one at a time mixing well after each addition.  Add the pumpkin and combine well.
5. Add the dry ingredients stirring until just combined.  Stir in chocolate chips.
6. Spoon batter into prepared pans; don’t fill more than 2/3 full.  Bake side-by-side for about 50 min – one hour or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean.

Enjoy!

We’re still dealing with a watermain that broke this weekend here in Boston :(.  Latest I’ve heard the main is fixed, however until sufficient testing is done residents should not drink the water.

“Love that dirty water…Boston you’re my home” – too soon? 😉

-Christina

Cookies and Cream Cheesecake Cupcakes

When was the first time you had an Oreo?  Scratch that…when was the LAST time you had an Oreo?  Still thinking?  Well then it’s been too long 🙂 .  Oreo and cheesecake sit pretty high on my list of favorite sweet treats, so when I saw a recipe for Cookies & Cream Cheesecake Cupcakes over at Handle the Heat I HAD to try them…and boy oh boy are they good!

The original recipe comes from the GrandMammy of everything domestic – Martha Stewart herself.  Tessa at Handle the Heat suggests halving the recipe (making 15 instead of 30) and unless you’re bringing these to a big party or your day was just THAT terrible, I’d have to agree 🙂 …they can be dangerous if left in the fridge.

The recipe is super easy and can absolutely be made the night before – crucial for busy bees!  Remember to take the cream cheese out of the fridge about 20 min or so before working into the recipe so it can come to room temp (much easier to work with as well).  FYI – I used light sour cream but regular cream cheese – it all evens out right? ;).

Without further ado…

Cookies and Cream Cheesecake Cupcakes
From Martha Stewart’s Cupcakes
Makes 30 (I halved to make 15)


Ingredients

  • 42 Oreo cookies, 30 left whole and 12 coarsely chopped
  • 2 pounds cream cheese, room temperature (four 8 oz. containers)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4 large eggs, room temperature, lightly beaten
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • Pinch of salt

Directions
1. Preheat oven to 275 degrees.  Line standard muffin tins with paper liners.  Place 1 whole cookie in the bottom of each lined cup.

2. With an electric mixer on medium high speed, beat cream cheese until smooth, scraping down sides of bowl as needed.  Gradually add sugar, and beat until combined.  Beat in vanilla.

3. Drizzle in eggs, a bit at a time, beating to combine and scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.  Beat in sour cream and salt.  Stir in chopped cookies by hand.

4. Divide batter evenly among cookie-lined cups, filling each almost to the top.  Bake, rotating pan halfway through, until filling is set, about 25 minutes.

5.  Transfer to wire racks to cool completely.  Refrigerate at least 4 hours (or up to overnight).  Remove from refrigerator just before serving.

Enjoy!

-Christina