Taking Time Off!

Desserts & Pastries

Brownies

Brownies with Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Icing

Yield: 32 brownies

For the Brownie:
4 ounces unsweetened chocolate, finely chopped
1 cup butter (salted or unsalted), at room temperature
2 cups light brown sugar
4 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup all-purpose flour

For the Cookie Dough:
¾ cup butter (salted or unsalted)
¾ cup light brown sugar
¾ cup granulated sugar
3 tablespoons whole milk
1½ teaspoons vanilla extract
1½ cups all-purpose flour
1½ cups mini chocolate chips

Prepare the Brownies: Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Line a 9×13-inch pan with foil, with enough to hang over all four sides. Butter the foil. In a medium glass bowl, melt the chocolate in the microwave in 30-second increments, stirring after each, until melted and smooth. Set aside to cool slightly. In a large mixing bowl, mix the butter and brown sugar with an electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs and vanilla extract, scraping the bowl as needed. Mix in the melted chocolate until combined. Reduce the speed to low, add the flour and mix just until combined (don’t over-mix). Spread the batter into the prepared pan. Bake 25 to 35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let cool completely.

Prepare the Cookie Dough: In a medium bowl, use an electric mixer on medium speed to combine the butter and both sugars. Add the milk and vanilla and mix until combined. Reduce the speed to low and mix in the flour just until combined. Using a rubber spatula, stir in the chocolate chips.

Spread the cookie dough over the cooled brownies. Refrigerate until the dough is firm, about an hour. Use a sharp knife or a pizza cutter (my favorite way to slice brownies!) to cut the brownies. Store the brownies in an airtight container at cool room temperature or in the refrigerator.

 

 

Cookies

Cream Cheese Cookies with Crushed Oreo

½ cups unsalted Butter, Softened
3 ounces Cream Cheese, Softened
1 cup Sugar
1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
1 cup All-purpose Flour
½ cup Chocolate Chips
1 cup Oreo Cookie Crumbs, crushed fine
½ cups White Chocolate Chips, Melted (optional)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees and line baking sheets with parchment paper. Set aside.

In a large bowl, cream together the butter and cream cheese using a  mixer until they are well combined.

Add the sugar and vanilla and mix until ingredients are well combined. Add the flour and mix on low just until the flour is incorporated. Stir in the chocolate chips.

Form the dough into 1″ balls and roll in Oreo cookie crumbs until cookie is covered. Place covered cookie balls onto the prepared baking sheet. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes, or until the edges are golden and the tops are slightly puffed.

Cool on the pan for two minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool. Once cool, drizzle cookies with melted white chocolate if desired.

 

Pumpkin White Chocolate Chunk Cookies 

Yield: 3 to 4 dozen cookies
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup butterscotch chips
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter – softened
2/3 cup granulated white sugar
2/3 cup packed light brown sugar
1 large egg
2/3 cup canned pumpkin puree
1 1/4 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
1 cup chopped white chocolate – (or use chips)
1 cup chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line two baking sheets with parchment.

Put flour and baking soda in bowl of a food processor fitted with a metal blade. Pulse to distribute the baking soda evenly. Add the butterscotch chips and process until the chips are ground, with some slightly larger bits remaining. Turn the flour and butterscotch chips out into a large bowl.

In a separate large bowl, cream the butter, granulated sugar and brown sugar together for 2 – 3 minutes, scraping down the bowl from time to time, until fluffy. Add the egg and pumpkin puree and stir to combine.

Pour the wet mixture into the flour mixture and stir to combine. Add oats, white chocolate chunks and nuts and stir until ingredients are combined and no flour is visible. Cover the bowl and refrigerate for at least 10 minutes or overnight.

Use a 1/4 cup measure or ice cream scoop to drop the cookie dough onto the prepared sheets, leaving 2 inches between cookies.

Bake cookies on center rack for 13 to 15 minutes, rotating the cookie sheets halfway through for even baking, until they’re light golden brown and no longer doughy looking. Cool cookies on cookie sheets for 10 to 15 minutes before transferring them to a wire rack or clean surface to cool completely.

 

Pecan Sandies 

3/4 cups pecans

4 ounces unsalted butter, softened

6 tablespoons sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 cup all purpose flour

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Toast the pecans on a jelly roll pan for @ 7 minutes. Pulse them in a food prcessor until finely ground ( or coarsely chop by hand)

In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy; beat in vanilla and salt. With mixer on low, gradually add flour, beating just until combined. Fold in pecans.

Roll dough into 1 1/2-inch balls, and place on two baking sheets, 2 inches apart. With the dampened bottom of a glass, lightly flatten each ball.

Bake until cookies are golden brown, 15 to 17 minutes, rotating sheets halfway through. Transfer to wire racks, and let cool @ 4 minutes. While still warm, toss them in the sugar bowl to coat them completely.

Return to rack to cool completely.

 

Ultimate Chocolate Chip Cookies

2 cups plus 2 tablespoons flour
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon baking soda
12 tablespoons unsalted butter – melted and cooled until warm
1 cup brown sugar
½ cup granulated sugar
1 large egg plus 1 egg yolk
2 teaspoons vanilla
1-2 cups chocolate chips

Heat oven to 325 degrees.
Mix flour, salt and baking soda together in a medium bowl.
Mix butter and sugars until thoroughly blended.
Mix in egg and yolk and vanilla.
Add dry ingredients and mix until just combined.
Stir in chips to taste.

Bake for 15 minutes until light golden yet centers are still soft and puffy.
Cool on cookie sheets.

 

Pastries 

Butterscotch Pumpkin Muffins

18 muffins

1 ¾ cups flour

½ cup firmly packed light brown sugar

½ cup sugar

½ teaspoon ground ginger

½ teaspoon ground mace

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/8 teaspoon ground cloves

1 teaspoon baking soda

¼ teaspoon baking powder

¼ teaspoon salt

2 large eggs

1 cup canned pumpkin

½ cup butter, melted

1 cup butterscotch chips

½ cup chopped pecans, toasted, optional 

In a large bowl, mix flour, sugars, ginger, mace, cinnamon, cloves, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Create a well in the center of the mixture.

In another bowl, whisk together eggs, pumpkin, and butter. Stir in butterscotch chips and pecans and pour into the well of dry ingredients. Fold together just until the dry ingredients are moistened. Do not overmix.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spoon batter evenly into greased muffin cups. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack.