Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

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Oatmeal raisin cookies, people love them or people hate them. The raisins can be a point of contention for cookie consumers. It has taken us many years to like these cookies but we think it all comes down to the recipe. Oatmeal raisin cookies have the tendency to be dry and crumbly after the first day and that is just sad.

This recipe though, generates moist cookies for a couple of days after baking, that is if you don’t eat them all on the first day 🤣. The reason they keep their moisture is the inclusion of molasses. Molasses adds moisture, but it also adds another layer of sweetness and flavor. You can use regular molasses, but recently we have switched to using robust molasses in our baked goods and have been very pleased with the flavor. Try it out for yourself and see if you like the robust flavor also!

Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

Ingredients

  • 1 cup butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup (200 g) packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup (50 g) granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 T vanilla extract
  • 1 T molasses
  • 1 1/2 cups (190 g) all purpose flour
  • 1 t baking soda
  • 2 t ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 1 cup (140 g) raisins
  • 3 cups (240 g) old fashioned oats

Instructions

  1. Using a mixer, cream together butter, brown sugar and granulated sugar until completely incorporated.
  2. Add in eggs and vanilla. Mix. Add molasses. Mix. Scrape down sides as necessary to ensure all ingredients are combined. Set aside.
  3. In a medium bowl, mix flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. Add to the wet ingredients and mix until combined, scraping down sides to combine.
  4. Stir in raisins and oatmeal by hand.
  5. Refrigerate 30 minutes to 1 hour.
  6. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line baking sheets with parchment.
  7. Scoop about 1 1/2 tablespoons of dough and place 2 inches apart on prepared baking sheets.
  8. Bake 10-12 minutes, until edges are lightly browned and center is just cooked.
  9. Cool and enjoy!
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An Untraditional Dead Bread

An Untraditional Dead Bread

posted in: Breakfast, Desserts, Food, Snacks | 0 | This post may contain referral links. See privacy policy for more.

Growing up in the southwest we learned Spanish in school and at the start of every November we would celebrate Día de los Muertos with our class. Día de los Muertos is a three day celebration in Mexico, during which families celebrate their relatives that have passed. It is believed that during these three days, family members return to the living world to visit, therefore offerings are made to help them celebrate. You can read more about Día de los Muertos here. One of the most common food offerings is Pan de Muerto, or Dead Bread.

During school we would make and eat this bread at our Spanish class festivities. Traditional Dead Bread is an enriched yeast bread, made wth milk and eggs and flavored with anise seeds. However today we wanted to present an alternative to the traditional Dead Bread.

Our first variance from the tradition is the omission of anise seeds. Al is not a fan of anything licorice tasting at all, therefore we left them out.

Our next variance was born purely out of an accident. Our original recipe included sweetened condensed milk instead of whole milk. While perusing the options at the grocery store, we picked out a couple of cans of our go to brand, Eagle Brand but then we also decided to try a different brand, La Lechera. The La Lechera brand also had some other interesting options including Dulce de Leche Caramel. Very pleased with our purchases of all the different options, we waltzed home to make our Dead Bread. We decided to try the La Lechera sweetened condensed milk but with all the cans looking similar, instead of opening the correct can, we opened the Dulce de Leche Caramel. This is probably the best baking mistake we have ever made! The bread turned out extra moist with a deeper yellow color than other versions we have made with whole milk or sweetened condensed milk.

Another switch we made from tradition is the finishing of the bread with granulated sugar, which is usually sprinkled on right right after the loaf comes out of the oven. We love cinnamon so we decided to substitute cinnamon sugar and then we helped it adhere better by brushing melted butter on the top then sprinkling the cinnamon sugar onto the loaf.

Forming the shape of the Dead Bread is probably the most challenging step of this whole process. Traditionally the loaf is topped with a skull and crossbones. How elaborate this decoration is, is up to the baker. We kept it pretty simple. We took 8 ounces of the dough after the first rise and separated it into 5 pieces. With the remaining dough, we formed it into a round loaf and then made a golf ball sized indentation in the middle. Next, we formed the skull and crossbones. We rolled four of the pieces into cylinders, lightly brushed one side with water and placed them on the main loaf, meeting in the middle. The fifth piece we rolled into a ball and then flattened it slightly. We also brushed a little bit of water on the underside of this piece and placed it in the center, covering the mesh points of the crossbones, to be the skull.

One last tip before we share our recipe. While baking, leave the loaf uncovered for the first half of the baking time to allow the loaf to brown, then tent the loaf with a piece of aluminum foil to protect it from over browning and drying out.

An Untraditional Pan de Muerto

An Untraditional Pan de Muerto

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup warm water (110-115°F)
  • 1 packet (7 grams) active dry yeast
  • pinch of sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup La Lechera Dulce de Leche Caramel
  • 4 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 4 to 5 cups all purpose flour
  • 4 tablespoons melted butter
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 scant tablespoon cinnamon

Instructions

  1. Pour the warm water into the mixing bowl of a stand mixer, add yeast and pinch of sugar. Mix to wet the yeast. Let sit for 10 minutes.
  2. In a small sauce pan, heat butter on low until just melted. Add Dulce de Leche Caramel. Whisk to combine. Make sure not to heat over 115°F.
  3. Crack the eggs into a medium bowl, whisk in salt and the warm butter and caramel mixture.
  4. Carefully add the egg mixture to the yeast mixing bowl.
  5. With dough hook attachment, mix to combine all of the liquid ingredients.
  6. While mixing, slowly add the flour a cup at a time. Once you have added 4 cups, keep adding a little until the dough comes away from the side of the bowl.
  7. Let the dough knead fro 5 minutes in the stand mixer.
  8. Spray a large mixing bowl with oil. Add the dough and cover with an oiled piece of plastic wrap. Let rise for an hour, until doubled.
  9. Cover a sheet pan with a piece of parchment paper.
  10. Remove 8 ounces of the dough and set aside.
  11. With the remaining dough, shape by folding it onto itself, forming a round loaf. Place on prepared baking sheet. Make an indentation in the center of the loaf about the size of a golf ball.
  12. Divide the 8 ounces of dough into 5 pieces (1.6 ounces) roll four into long cylinders (bones), roll the fifth portion into a ball (skull).
  13. Brush a small amount of water onto one side of each of the long cylinders (bones) and form a cross with each piece meeting in the indentation of the main loaf. Brush a small amount of water on the ball (skull) and press into center of loaf.
  14. Cover with oiled piece of plastic wrap and let rise for 40-60 minutes, until doubled.
  15. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  16. Bake for 35-45 minutes until the internal temperature reaches 200°F. Tent the loaf halfway through baking to avoid over browning.
  17. Remove loaf from oven.
  18. Mix granulated sugar and cinnamon.
  19. Working in sections, brush melted butter onto the loaf and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar.
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Copycat Lawry’s Seasoned Salt

Copycat Lawry’s Seasoned Salt

posted in: Food, Ingredients | 2 | This post may contain referral links. See privacy policy for more.

We are big fans of the Food Network and one of our favorite tv chefs is Ree Drummond, aka The Pioneer Woman. If you watch the show, then you know that one of Ree’s favorite ingredients is Lawry’s Seasoned Salt.

We have seen it at the grocery store many times, but never felt compelled to grab a bottle and put it into our cart. However, one fine day last week, we decided to make breaded pork chops and saw Ree’s version used seasoned salt. We didn’t want to run to the grocery store, so decided to look up a copycat and version. It was so good, we have already added it to all of our favorite savory dishes and it adds a great punch.

The effect is subtle, but definitely there! It has that savory taste, that “umami.” Wikipedia says that umami means “brothy or meaty.” Basically, it’s our new favorite thing in the kitchen!

Copycat Lawry’s Seasoned Salt

Copycat Lawry’s Seasoned Salt

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cornstarch

Instructions

  1. Combine all ingredients and pour into a glass or plastic container.
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Two more new seasoning secrets we are keen to try are Kitchen Bouquet and Gravy Master. These are both supposed to enhance the meatiness of dishes.

Do you use Lawry’s Seasoning Salt? Have you tried Kitchen Bouquet or Gravy Master? We’re eager to know, so please share below! 🙂

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Our Top 5 Recipes for Cookie Exchange Season!

Our Top 5 Recipes for Cookie Exchange Season!

posted in: Desserts, Food | 1 | This post may contain referral links. See privacy policy for more.

Tis the season of holiday cookie exchanges. A wonderful time of year! If you are still on the lookout for cookies to bake, checkout some of our favorite cookie recipes.


Peanut Butter Cookies
This recipe is from one of our grandma’s cookbooks and the cookies are soft and chewy! Perfect to satisfy those sweet and salty cravings.

All Time Favorite Mini M&M Cookies
Whenever we crave chocolate chip cookies, this is the recipe we turn to. We have been making them for years and they are delicious.

Oatmeal Apple Cookies
If you love oatmeal cookies but not the traditional raisin variety, give these cookies a try. The apples in these cookies keep them moist, while the oatmeal plumps up to give them a chewy texture.

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies
Pumpkin spice has overtaken the food market, and we’re joining the trend. The spice mix in this recipe is perfection. The addition of mini chocolate chips make these cookies extra sweet and warming.

Date Pecan Cookies
Pecans add a delightful crunch to these cookies. The chopped dates are marvelous morsels that add moisture and soak up the warm spice flavors.

We hope you give these cookie recipes a try! Let us know how they turn out!

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Oatmeal Apple Cookies

Oatmeal Apple Cookies

posted in: Desserts, Food | 0 | This post may contain referral links. See privacy policy for more.

As you guys know, we LOVE cookies and we also LOVE warm spices. We had some leftover apples after we made Our Favorite Cinnamon Apple Cake so we decided to make these cookies. While Mac enjoys a good oatmeal raisin cookie, Al finds raisins to be most unpalatable. Consequently, we replaced the raisins with apples. They turned out to be a perfect substitution.

The moisture from the apples permeates the oatmeal which keeps the cookies soft for a couple of days. The cinnamon and nutmeg are perfect to warm you from the inside out in the cold winter weather. These cookies are delicious for any occasion.


In a medium bowl, mix together the flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking soda and salt.
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Peel, core and finely dice the apple. Place in a separate bowl.
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Cream together the butter, brown sugar and granulated sugar.
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Add in the egg and vanilla. Mix well until combined.
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Add the dry mix until combined, then mix in oats.
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Finally add the diced apple.
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Cover and refrigerate for 10-15 minutes. Scoop heaping tablespoons of dough onto parchment lined baking sheets. Bake 12-14 minutes at 350°F.
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They taste great warm, but if you can resist eating them for a couple of hours or even overnight, they taste even better. Store in refrigerator.
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Oatmeal Apple Cookies

Oatmeal Apple Cookies

Ingredients

  • 1 c flour
  • 1 t ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 t ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 t baking soda
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 1 medium Granny Smith apple
  • 1/2 c butter, softened
  • 1/2 c brown sugar
  • 1/4 c granulated sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 t vanilla extract
  • 1 3/4 c quick oats

Instructions

  1. In a medium bowl mix together the flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking soda and salt.
  2. Peel, core and finely dice the apple and place a separate bowl.
  3. Cream together the butter, brown sugar and granulated sugar.
  4. Add in the egg and vanilla. Mix well until combined.
  5. Add the dry mix until combined, then mix in oats and finally the diced apple.
  6. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  7. Cover and refrigerate for 10-15 minutes.
  8. Scoop heaping tablespoons of dough onto parchment lined baking sheets.
  9. Bake 12-14 minutes.
  10. Store in refrigerator.
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Our Favorite Cinnamon Apple Cake

Our Favorite Cinnamon Apple Cake

posted in: Desserts, Food | 8 | This post may contain referral links. See privacy policy for more.

Thanksgiving week is here! Are you still undecided on what to serve for dessert? We are big fans of the traditional pumpkin pie while others are fans of apple pie or pecan pie. But what do you do choose if you don’t like any of the traditional choices? This terrific cinnamon apple cake might be the perfect solution!

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It is a moist cake since it has both butter and cream cheese in it, plus yummy apples. We love to use Granny Smith apples whenever apples are needed in a recipe, however any type of baking apple will do. If you like Rome or Honeycrisp, use those instead. We have been making cinnamon apple cake for years and have yet to tire of it.


This may be an unconventional tip, but this cake is even more delicious if you eat it cold. Sure it’s good fresh baked and at room temperature, but straight out of the fridge, this cake tastes divine! We feel that if you want to maximize the tastiness of this cake, eat it cold. So if you desire a non-traditional dessert, give this cake a try this week! Now, let’s bake!

Combine the flour, baking powder and salt in a medium mixing bowl.
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Peel, core and thinly slice three Granny Smith apples and place in a medium mixing bowl.
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Mix 1/4 cup granulated sugar and 2 teaspoons cinnamon. Reserve 2 tablespoons of this mixture for later. Pour the remaining cinnamon sugar over the sliced apples.
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Stir to coat all of the slices.
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In a large bowl cream together 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar, butter, cream cheese and vanilla. Mix until thoroughly combined.
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Add in eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition.
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Add the dry mixture.
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Stir in apples, taking care to make sure batter gets between every slice.
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Pour into greased 9 inch springform pan.
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Top with reserved cinnamon sugar.
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Bake at 350°F for 60-65 minutes until toothpick comes out clean.
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Let cool in pan for 15 minutes then release outer ring to let cake cool completely. Refrigerate leftovers.
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Serve warm cake with ice cream. Or enjoy a slice straight from the fridge. Delicious!
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Our Favorite Cinnamon Apple Cake

Our Favorite Cinnamon Apple Cake

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 c flour
  • 1 1/2 t baking powder
  • 1/4 t salt
  • 3 medium granny smith apples
  • 1 3/4 c granulated sugar, divided
  • 2 t cinnamon
  • 1/2 c butter, softened
  • 1 t vanilla extract
  • 6 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • Special Equipment: 9 inch springform pan

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Butter a 9 inch springform pan.
  3. In a medium mixing bowl combine flour, baking powder and salt.
  4. Peel, core and thinly slice the apples and place in a medium mixing bowl.
  5. In a small bowl mix together 1/4 cup granulated sugar and cinnamon. Set 2 tablespoons of this mixture aside for later. Pour the rest of the cinnamon sugar over the sliced apples and mix thoroughly.
  6. In a large bowl cream together 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar, butter, vanilla and cream cheese. Mix until completely combined.
  7. Add eggs, one at a time, stirring well after each addition.
  8. Carefully stir in flour mixture.
  9. Stir in apples. Take your time, making sure to get the batter between the apple slices.
  10. Pour batter into prepared pan. Top with reserved cinnamon sugar.
  11. Bake 60-65 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean. Let cool for 15 minutes in pan then release the outer ring. Cool completely then store in fridge.
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Fluffy and Delicious Dinner Rolls

Fluffy and Delicious Dinner Rolls

posted in: Food, Side Dishes | 1 | This post may contain referral links. See privacy policy for more.

Thanksgiving is just a couple weeks away and if you are like us, you are probably in the beginning stages of assembling your menu. One major part of our Thanksgiving menu is rolls. We are devout carb lovers therefore a holiday dinner is not complete without fluffy dinner rolls.

Fluffy Dinner Rolls

When we were younger, we always bought Pillsbury Flaky Layers Biscuits to consume with our turkey and gravy. While these biscuits are delicious, they just aren’t the same as homemade bread. In a pinch or a nostalgic moment, we still eat these biscuits.

But since Thanksgiving is a great time to try new things on your menu, give these dinner rolls a try. They are simple to make and the end result is delicious.


To start, mix warm water and yeast in stand mixer bowl. Let sit for 10-15 minutes covered with a tea towel, until frothy.
Fluffy Dinner Rolls
In a medium mixing bowl whisk together milk, egg, vegetable oil, sugar and salt.
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Fluffy Dinner Rolls
Add the liquid mix to the yeast mixture. Stir to combine using the dough hook attachment.
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Add all of the flour and mix until a shaggy dough has formed on level 2.
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Continue kneading the dough for 8-10 minutes on level 2. Dough will be smooth, slightly tacky and will spring back when poked.
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Spray large mixing bowl and a piece of plastic wrap with oil. Place dough in prepared bowl, then cover with the plastic wrap. Gently press the wrap onto the dough surface so it stays moist.
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Cover bowl with tea towel and let rise 45-60 minutes, until doubled in size.
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Carefully remove plastic wrap and place aside to reuse. Flour a cutting board and dump dough out.
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Cut into 12 pieces. Fold each piece onto itself to form a smooth to then roll into balls. Place into 11×7 pan.
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Cover pan with saved plastic wrap and tea towel. Let rise again about 30 minutes until pillowy and doubled in size.
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Preheat oven to 375°F. Melt tablespoon of butter and gently brush onto tops of the risen rolls.
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Fluffy Dinner Rolls
Bake 15-18 minutes until golden brown.
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Devour one or three!
Fluffy Dinner Rolls

Fluffy and Delicious Dinner Rolls

Fluffy and Delicious Dinner Rolls

Ingredients

  • 1/2 c warm water (105-110°F)
  • 1 T active dry yeast
  • 1/2 c milk, room temperature
  • 1 egg, room temperature
  • 2 T vegetable oil
  • 2 T sugar
  • 1 t salt
  • 16 oz all purpose flour
  • 1 T butter
  • Special equipment: Stand mixer with dough hook

Instructions

  1. In a stand mixing bowl, combine warm water and yeast, stir to mix then cover with tea towel. Let sit 10-15 minutes until frothy.
  2. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together milk, egg, vegetable oil, sugar and salt. Add this to the yeast mixture.
  3. Stir a couple of times with the dough hook attachment to incorporate.
  4. Carefully add all of the flour to the mixing bowl. Mix until a shaggy dough forms.
  5. Then knead on level 2 for 8-10 minutes. Dough will be smooth, slightly tacky and will spring back when poked.
  6. Spray a large mixing bowl and a piece of plastic wrap with oil. Transfer dough to prepared bowl and cover the dough with the plastic wrap, pressing it around the dough. Cover bowl with tea towel and let rise for 45-60 minutes, until doubled in size.
  7. Lightly flour a cutting board. Carefully remove the plastic wrap and set aside to use again.
  8. Dump dough onto cutting board. Cut into 12 pieces, fold the pieces onto themselves and roll into balls. Place in an 11x7 pan.
  9. Cover with the oiled plastic wrap again and cover with tea towel. Let rise for about 30 minutes or until doubled in size and pillowy looking.
  10. Preheat oven to 375°F.
  11. Melt tablespoon of butter and lightly brush onto the risen rolls.
  12. Bake 15-18 minutes until lightly golden.
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Date Pecan Cookies

Date Pecan Cookies

posted in: Desserts, Food | 1 | This post may contain referral links. See privacy policy for more.

Cookies are delicious any time. Our year-round of love of cookies is apparent from our previous recipes for Mini M&M Cookies and Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies. But once the weather starts to become cooler and the leaves start changing, cookies are even better. They warm your house and your soul at the same time!
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These Date Pecan Cookies are moist from the chopped dates but also a little crunchy with the chopped pecans. The hint of cinnamon is what really takes these cookies over the top! If you are a chocolate lover, you could also add chocolate chips to these cookies for added deliciousness.

We told you about how our Grandma was keen to distinguish between figs and dates in our recipe for Roasted Bacon-Wrapped, Blue Cheese-Stuffed Fresh Figs. When dried, figs and dates do look rather similar and upon further research, they have more similarities. We discovered that both have origins in the Middle East and have been cultivated for their delicious fruit since ancient times.

Furthermore, both plants can be quite drought tolerant. There is even a date farm in Yuma, Arizona: Martha’s Gardens. However, dates come from the date palm, while figs come from the deciduous Ficus carica tree of the mulberry family. We enjoy eating both! Now let’s start baking!


Mix the flour, baking soda, salt and cinnamon in a bowl.
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Cream together the butter and granulated sugar.
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Add eggs, one at a time and mix after each one. Then add vanilla.
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Add dry ingredients.
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Mix in chopped dates and pecans. Mix until incorporated. Refrigerate 2 hours or overnight.
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Dough will be very hard, use a heavy duty spoon to scoop heaping tablespoons of dough. Then roll in your hands to form a ball.
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Bake 10-11 minutes at 350°F.
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Let cool on wire rack then devour.
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Date Pecan Cookies

Date Pecan Cookies

Ingredients

  • 3 c flour
  • 1 t baking soda
  • 1 t salt
  • 1 1/2 t cinnamon
  • 1 c butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 c granulated sugar
  • 3 eggs, room temperature
  • 1 t vanilla
  • 2 c roughly chopped pecans
  • 1 1/2 c chopped, pitted dates

Instructions

  1. In a medium bowl, mix together the flour, baking soda, salt and cinnamon.
  2. Cream together butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
  3. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition.
  4. Add vanilla and mix.
  5. Carefully add dry ingredients and mix until incorporated.
  6. Add pecans and dates, mix until evenly distributed.
  7. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and chill at least two hours or overnight.
  8. Preheat oven 350°F.
  9. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
  10. Dough will be very hard, use a heavy duty spoon to scoop a heaping tablespoon of dough, then roll to form a ball. Continue with rest of dough.
  11. Bake 10-11 minutes until cookies are golden brown and center is cooked.
  12. Let cool on wire rack.
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Creamy, One Pan Mac n Cheese

Creamy, One Pan Mac n Cheese

posted in: Food, Main Dishes | 0 | This post may contain referral links. See privacy policy for more.

Happy Halloween everyone! We hope you have a spooktacular day with plenty of tricks and treats! For today’s Recipe Monday, we will be making Creamy, One Pan Mac n Cheese.

Mac n Cheese is one of those foods that we cannot deny. We love cheese and we love our carbs so Mac n Cheese is one of our all-time favorite foods. We have tried many different recipes for homemade Mac n Cheese, but this one stands out. It is different from other roux-based and egg-based Mac n Cheeses. Both of these styles of Mac n Cheese have a downside.

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Roux-based Mac n Cheese tastes pretty good fresh out of the oven. But when you reheat the leftovers the next day, the roux breaks and you are left with cheesy, butter-coated noodles. Not very good in our opinion. Egg-based Mac n Cheese tastes too much like egg and not much like Mac n Cheese at all.

Another wonderful aspect of this recipe is that it all takes place in one pan. It was also extremely quick to make and we had all the ingredients on hand. This recipe is definitely a keeper. It is creamy and cheesy, plus it still tastes delicious and fresh the next day!


To begin, combine 4 cups of milk, 1 t salt and macaroni in a large pan. Heat on medium.
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Bring to low boil and stir frequently.
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Cook until macaroni is tender and milk is almost all gone. Milk will have curdled slightly, which is good.
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Remove from heat and add 2/3 c milk, shredded mozzarella, shredded sharp cheddar, cream cheese, butter, Dijon, and pepper.
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Stir to combine. Look at the ooegy gooegy goodness!
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Return to heat on low to melt cheeses. Stir frequently. Salt to taste.
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Plate and enjoy!
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Someone’s ready for their close-up!
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If you want some spice, you could add a little freshly ground nutmeg or a dash of cayenne. We are Mac n Cheese purists and therefore did not add such invasive ingredients. 😉

We do like spice in our Pumpkin Spice Chocolate Chip Cookies, however, which you can read about in last week’s Recipe Monday. These cookies are perfect to welcome in November!

Creamy One Pot Mac n Cheese

Creamy One Pot Mac n Cheese

Ingredients

  • 4 2/3 cups whole milk, divided
  • 1 t salt
  • 3/4 lb elbow macaroni
  • 8 oz shredded sharp cheddar
  • 3 oz shredded mozzarella
  • 2 oz cream cheese cut into small pieces
  • 2 T butter cut into small pieces
  • 1 t Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 t ground pepper
  • Salt

Instructions

  1. In a large frypan, heat 4 cups of milk, 1 t salt and uncooked macaroni over medium heat.
  2. Bring to a low boil, being careful not to scald the milk. Stir frequently.
  3. Cook until macaroni is tender and most of the milk has been absorbed. There will be clumps of curdled milk, but that is good.
  4. Remove from heat and add remaining 2/3 cup milk, shredded cheddar, shredded mozzarella, cream cheese, butter, Dijon and ground pepper.
  5. Place back on burner at low heat, stir until smooth and creamy. Salt to taste.
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Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

posted in: Desserts, Food | 4 | This post may contain referral links. See privacy policy for more.

These days, it seems that the arrival of fall means the arrival of pumpkin spice flavored everything at the supermarket. Pumpkin spice coffee, pumpkin spice cereal, even pumpkin spice lip balm. While some may bemoan this trend, we love pumpkin spice!

However, we’ve noticed that the homemade pumpkin spiced goods seem to taste better than many of the commercial options. This might be because when you make them yourself, you can control how much and which spices are included, tailoring the mixture exactly to your tastes. Commercial options are generally under-spiced for our tastes.

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

This pumpkin cookie recipe meets all the requirements to be a great cookie. It is moist, well-spiced and still tastes great after a couple of days. The twist to this pumpkin spice cookie is the addition of mini chocolate chips. The small size chips are great in this cookie and are, in our opinion, preferable over regular sized chips. The larger chocolate chips can take away from the pumpkin and spices, which throws off the flavor balance of the cookie.

Try this recipe out this week to celebrate a couple of food holidays: Wednesday, October 26th is National Pumpkin Day and Friday, October 28th is National Chocolate Day!

In a medium bowl, add flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, ground cinnamon, ground allspice, ground nutmeg. Mix to combine and set aside.
Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies
In a large bowl, cream together butter and both sugars.
Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies
Add two eggs and mix.
Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies
Stir in pumpkin.
Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies


Carefully add the dry ingredients from step one. Stir until just combined.
Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies
Add the mini chocolate chips.
Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies
Scoop dough onto parchment lined baking sheets.
Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies
Bake 9-10 minutes at 375°F. Pumpkin perfection awaits!
Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies
Are you passionate about Pumpkin Spice? Let us know with a comment below!

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 c flour
  • 2 1/2 t baking powder
  • 1 t baking soda
  • 1 t salt
  • 1 t ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 t ground allspice
  • 1/4 t ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 c butter, softened
  • 3/4 c granulated sugar
  • 3/4 c brown sugar, packed
  • 2 eggs
  • 15 ounce can pumpkin
  • 1 c mini chocolate chips

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375°F.
  2. Mix the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, ground cinnamon, ground allspice, and ground nutmeg in a medium bowl. Set aside.
  3. Cream together the butter and both sugars.
  4. Add eggs and mix.
  5. Mix in the pumpkin.
  6. Carefully add the flour mixture then stir in the chocolate chips.
  7. Use small scoop to portion out dough onto parchment lined baking sheets.
  8. Bake 9-10 minutes, until lightly golden.
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The Best Brioche Buns!

The Best Brioche Buns!

posted in: Food, Main Dishes | 5 | This post may contain referral links. See privacy policy for more.

While we love a good hamburger bun from the grocery store, after a trip to Fuddruckers last month, we decided to try to make some hamburger buns of a similar caliber.

The brioche buns at Fuddruckers had a glorious sheen on them that you just can’t get from Sara Lee. Brioche is a French dough based on eggs and butter which give this bread a smooth texture and rich taste.

The Best Brioche Buns

We made our brioche buns free form, but you can use a pan like this one to make the buns completely uniform. The buns turned out to be fantastic and although it is a two day process, it is definitely worth the effort.

Here’s what you will need.
The Best Brioche Buns
Start by mixing the eggs, warm water, yeast and half of the flour.
The Best Brioche Buns
Mix one minute, until smooth.
The Best Brioche Buns
Cover bowl with tea towel and let rise 45 minutes. Mixture will have risen slightly and have lots of little bubbles on the surface.
The Best Brioche Buns
Add remaining flour, salt and sugar. Use dough hook to mix for 8 minutes on level 4.
The Best Brioche Buns
Dough will be moist, don’t add more flour. Add cubed butter, a little at a time until it has all been incorporated. Takes 7-8 minutes on level 4.
The Best Brioche Buns
Dough will be shiny and still moist at this point. Place dough into oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 24 hours.
The Best Brioche Buns


The dough will have doubled during its time in the fridge.
The Best Brioche Buns
Portion out the dough and form into flat disks. Cover with tea towel and let rise 30-45 minutes until doubled in size.
The Best Brioche Buns
Mix egg yolk and water to make egg wash.
The Best Brioche Buns
Gently brush egg wash over the tops of the buns.
The Best Brioche Buns
Bake at 350°F for 20-25 minutes, until lightly browned.
The Best Brioche Buns
Slice the buns in half.
The Best Brioche Buns
Add your favorite burger recipe and top with delicious toppings!
The Best Brioche Buns

The Best Brioche Buns!

The Best Brioche Buns!

Ingredients

  • 480 grams all purpose flour, divided
  • 1 packet yeast (which equals 2 1/4 t)
  • 3/4 c warm water (between 105-110°F)
  • 4 eggs, room temperature
  • 3 T sugar
  • 1 1/2 t salt
  • 1/2 c cold butter, cubed
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 T water

Instructions

  1. In Kitchen Aid mixing bowl, combine half of the flour (240 grams), yeast, water and eggs.
  2. Mix with with flat beater slowly to incorporate ingredients, then one minute on level 4, until smooth. Scrape off beater and remove. Scrape down side of bowl.
  3. Cover bowl with tea towel and let rise 45 minutes.
  4. Add remaining flour (240 grams), sugar and salt. Using dough hook, beat on low until all ingredients are incorporated.
  5. Beat 8 minutes on level 4, scrape down sides occasionally.
  6. Slowly add cubed butter, a couple of cubes at a time while the mixer is on level 4. Continue until butter is incorporated, about 7-8 minutes.
  7. Lightly oil a large mixing bowl. Transfer dough to prepared bowl, cover with plastic wrap. Place in refrigerator for 24 hours.
  8. Cover two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  9. Weigh the dough. Calculate how many grams or ounces you need to measure out for 8-10 buns. Portion out the dough and place onto prepared baking sheets, 4 or 5 per sheet. Roll dough into balls, then flatten into 3/4 inch disks.
  10. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  11. Cover baking sheets with tea towels and let rise 30-45 minutes, until doubled in size.
  12. Mix egg yolk and water. Brush mixture over the tops of the buns.
  13. Bake for 20-25 minutes until browned.
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Peanut Butter Cookies (GIFT #7)

Peanut Butter Cookies (GIFT #7)

posted in: Desserts, Food, Grandma Inspired Fantastic Treats (GIFTs) | 8 | This post may contain referral links. See privacy policy for more.

We have loved peanut butter cookies since we were little. They are salty and sweet and they always have that lovely crosshatch pattern across the top. When our grandparents lived in a separate state, they would mail us a box about every 6-8 weeks. This was always exciting. Our grandma would include lots of different things in her shipments: interesting newspaper clippings, new recipes she thought we might like that she found in a magazine or the newspaper, some of her tomatoes if they were ripe. But the best part of her boxes, were the baked goods. She loved her sweets and loved sharing them with us. One of her favorite cookies was peanut butter cookies.

peanut-butter-cookies-2

We have tried making all kinds of recipes for peanut butter cookies, but they never were satisfactory. They would taste great fresh out of the oven, but the next day, they would be hard as rocks. Always a disappointment! Eventually, we kind of gave up on the perfect peanut butter cookie and perfected the mini M&M cookie to satisfy our cookie needs.

After we started our series of Grandma Inspired Fantastic Treats, we were flipping through one of our grandma’s recipe books and found a recipe she had modified for peanut butter cookies. Could this be the recipe she used when we were little? Most likely yes, but who knows, we prefer to think yes. In the original recipe, it called for 2 teaspoons baking soda, but she had crossed it out and wrote down 1/2 teaspoon baking powder plus 1 teaspoon baking soda. Maybe this was the secret to great peanut butter cookies! We had to give it a try.

First, mix together flour, baking powder and baking soda. Set aside.
peanut-butter-cookies-2
Cream softened butter, brown sugar and granulated sugar together until light and fluffy.
peanut-butter-cookies-1
Add eggs and mix, making the mixture even more creamy!
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Add a cup of creamy or crunchy peanut butter to the batter.
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Incorporate the flour mixture into the batter.
peanut-butter-cookies-5


The batter is ready!
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Dollop out batter with a small ice cream scoop.
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Smoosh the cookies with a large fork to create the classic peanut butter cookie cross-hatching.
peanut-butter-cookies-8
Bake for 8-10 minutes in a 350 degree oven.
peanut-butter-cookies-9
The resulting cookies are the best peanut butter cookies ever. They are excellent coming out of the oven and still soft a couple of days later too!
peanut-butter-cookies-10

Peanut Butter Cookies GIFT

Peanut Butter Cookies GIFT

Ingredients

  • 1 c brown sugar
  • 3/4 c granulated sugar
  • 1 c butter, softened
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup crunchy peanut butter
  • 2 3/4 c flour
  • 1/2 t baking powder
  • 1 t baking soda

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Mix together flour, baking powder and baking soda, then set aside.
  3. Cream both sugars and softened butter together.
  4. Add eggs and mix until incorporated.
  5. Add peanut butter and mix until incorporated.
  6. Mix in flour mixture.
  7. Scoop balls onto parchment lined baking sheets.
  8. Use fork tines to mark the cookies with a crosshatch pattern.
  9. Bake 8-10 minutes, until lightly brown.
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Brilliant Broccoli Tots: Skeptics Try the Newest Snacking Sensation

Brilliant Broccoli Tots: Skeptics Try the Newest Snacking Sensation

posted in: Food, Side Dishes | 0 | This post may contain referral links. See privacy policy for more.

Have you guys seen recipes for broccoli tots across the internet? We have seen a couple that were dubbed as low carb alternatives to tater tots and of course, we were skeptical. How could a tot made from broccoli taste as good as a tot made from potatoes? Once again we the skeptics were proved wrong, just like we were when we tried cauliflower pizza.

pizza, cauliflower pizza, gluten free, gluten free pizza

Click here to check out our Cauliflower Pizza Recipe!

 

Broccoli tots are amazing! Broccoli plus cheese, you can’t go wrong! This recipe is very simple, quick and delicious.

Blanch the broccoli for two minutes until it is bright green. Let cool.
broccoli-tots-1
Finely chop the broccoli florets. You don’t want the pieces to be too big or else you can’t form the tot.
broccoli-tots-2
Once the broccoli is chopped, cook the onions and garlic. We tried some of the recipes out there with raw onion and garlic – bad news, dude.
broccoli-tots-3
Mix all the ingredients together, then refrigerate for 20 minutes.
broccoli-tots-4
Scoop a heaping tablespoon of the mixture into your hands and form into tot shapes.
broccoli-tots-5
Bake at 400°F for 9 minutes, then flip and bake for 9 more minutes. Let cool slightly, then snack away!
broccoli-tots-6

Brilliant Broccoli Tots!

Brilliant Broccoli Tots!

Ingredients

  • 12 oz broccoli, cut into small florets
  • 1/2 cup onion, finely diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 c shredded cheddar
  • 1 egg beaten
  • 2/3 c panko breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 1/2 t pepper

Instructions

  1. Fill medium saucepan with water, add salt, bring to boil.
  2. Blanch broccoli for two minutes, make sure to press florets into the water while cooking.
  3. Drain and let cool.
  4. Heat a frypan to medium, add a splash of olive oil and onions. Cook until onions have caramelized. Turn off heat, add garlic mix to incorporate, then remove pan from burner. Let cool.
  5. Finely chop cooked broccoli florets
  6. Mix panko, salt and pepper in small bowl.
  7. Combine all ingredients in a medium mixing bowl.
  8. Refrigerate for 20 minutes.
  9. Preheat oven to 400°F.
  10. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  11. Form the tots. Scoop out about a heaping tablespoon into your hand, compact the mixture while also forming a tot shape.
  12. Place onto baking sheet and space evenly.
  13. Bake for 9 minutes, flip and bake for 9 more minutes.
  14. Let cool slightly.
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Homemade Pita Bread

Homemade Pita Bread

posted in: Food, Side Dishes | 8 | This post may contain referral links. See privacy policy for more.

After years of purchasing pita bread from the store, we decided to try making it ourselves. We discovered that not only is it easy to make, it is also much more tasty when it is fresh out of the oven.
super-simple-homemade-pita-bread
Fresh pita is delicious by itself, but also works well when slathered with our Cool and Tangy Tzatziki or stuffed with our Delicious Grilled Chicken SouvlakiPita is by definition a flatbread; it is made with flour, water and salt, and has a pocket in between the layers.

We previously blogged about our love for the Great British Bake Off. This weekend, we finished bingeing on season 6, and in episode 5 “Alternative Ingredients,” the bakers made gluten-free pitta bread using psyllium powder and nigella seeds. We recognized psyllium from that well known powder that keeps you regular, Metamucil. We had never heard of nigella seeds. Apparently, they are also know as “black cumin”- sounds good; we love cumin!

So if you are looking for a gluten-free version of pita, Paul Hollywood’s version seems like a beautiful option. It looks pleasantly hearty!


The first step to creating perfect pita is to mix some water and sugar.
pita-bread-1
Add yeast and 70 grams all purpose flour, mix. Let sit 15 minutes.
pita-bread-2
After 15 minutes, the mixture will be frothy. Add salt, olive oil, and the remaining flour.
pita-bread-3
Mix until shaggy ball is formed, then mix two minutes. The dough will look like the photo below. If dough is too wet, add more flour.  Let rest 10 minutes.
pita-bread-4
After ten minutes, the dough will have risen slightly. Mix for another two minutes.
pita-bread-5
Put dough into large mixing bowl that has been oiled and cover with oiled plastic wrap.
pita-bread-6
Let dough double in size, about 45 minutes to an hour.
pita-bread-7
Punch down and portion into 8 balls. Cover with tea towel and let rest for 10 minutes.
pita-bread-8
Balls will have risen slightly.
pita-bread-9
Keep dough balls covered as you work so they won’t dry out.
pita-bread-10
Work one ball at a time.
pita-bread-11
Roll out to 1/8 inch thickness.
pita-bread-12
Carefully place dough onto preheated baking sheet.
pita-bread-13
Bake for two minutes, bread will be puffed up. Flip.
pita-bread-14
and cook 1 minute more.
pita-bread-15
A perfect pile of pita!
pita-bread-16

Homemade Pita Bread

Homemade Pita Bread

Ingredients

  • 1 c lukewarm water (between 105-110°F)
  • 1/2 t sugar
  • 2 t active dry yeast
  • 410 grams all purpose flour, divided
  • 1 1/2 t kosher salt
  • 2 T olive oil
  • Special Equipment: Kitchen Aid Mixer and heavy duty baking sheet

Instructions

  1. Mix water and sugar in Kitchen Aid mixing bowl.
  2. Add yeast to water then add 70 grams flour and whisk.
  3. Cover bowl with clean tea towel and let sit for 15 minutes in a warm place, until mixture is frothy.
  4. Add salt, kosher salt and remaining flour to the mixing bowl.
  5. Using dough hook attachment, mix until a shaggy ball has formed then mix for two minutes. If dough looks too wet add a little more flour.
  6. After the two minutes, cover with tea towel again and let sit for 10 minutes.
  7. Remove tea towel and mix for another two minutes.
  8. Coat large mixing bowl with a thin layer of olive oil.
  9. Remove dough from mixing bowl and place into oiled bowl.
  10. Lightly oil a piece of plastic wrap and then place it over the dough and tuck it around the edges so the dough is completely covered.
  11. Cover bowl with tea towel, place bowl in a warm place for 45 minutes to 1 hour. Leave until the dough has doubled in size.
  12. Prepare the oven: Remove all racks except one on the lowest level possible, place heavy duty baking sheet on the rack, preheat oven to 500°F.
  13. Punch down dough and divide into 8 pieces on a floured surface.
  14. Form into balls and place on a floured surface, cover with tea towel and let rest for 10 minutes.
  15. Working with one ball at a time, roll until about 1/8 inch thick.
  16. Carefully pick up circle and place onto hot baking sheet.
  17. After 2 minutes the dough will be puffed up, turn and bake 1 minute more.
  18. Repeat with remaining balls.
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