Cream Cheese Chocolate Chip Cookies 

About a year ago I made a recipe for cream cheese chocolate chip cookies. They were good but not one of my favorites. I put the recipe away and did not think much of it until a friend and neighbor of mine, Jan Lines, mentioned something to me about them. It got me thinking – and hungry – for them again – so I searched online and found a recipe that looked similar to the one I had tried a year ago. I found the recipe a little time consuming and the dough just did not have that much flavor, so I changed it to fit my taste buds. My taste testers, family and friends went CRAZY for them – so I just had to share the recipe here with all of you!

These are best made in advance and chilled in the refrigerator overnight. You can actually make the dough and chill in the refrigerator for up to 5 days! These are the perfect make ahead cookie and wonderful for parties and cookie exchanges.

Make sure all ingredients are at room temperature – especially the cream cheese. Also make sure you use chocolate chips AND chocolate chunks for this recipe. The combination of the 2 are magical!

Cream Cheese Chocolate Chip Cookies

1 stick (4 oz) unsalted butter
2 oz cream cheese – full fat original
3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
1/4 cup white granulated sugar
1 large egg
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
2 heaping teaspoons corn starch
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 1/4 cups white all-purpose flour
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chunks

Start by combinding the unsalted butter and cream cheese in a bowl and beat until smooth and creamy. 

Add in the light brown sugar and white granulated sugar and continue to beat until the mixture is light in color and fluffy in texture. 

Beat in the large egg. 

Add in the pure vanilla extract, cornstarch, baking soda and salt. Stir to combine. 

Gently fold in the white all-purpose flour. 

Gently fold in the chocolate chips and chocolate chunks. 

Cover the bowl and refrigerate overnight. 

When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees F. and line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper. 

Roll dough into balls the size of two tablespoons and gently press them down with the palms of your hands before placing them onto the prepared baking sheets. 

Bake, one baking sheet at a time, for exactly 13 minutes. Remove and allow them to cool on their baking sheets. 

Enjoy!

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Alexis’s Brown Sugar Chocolate Chip Cookies

Yesterday I made – perhaps – the best chocolate chip cookies I have ever had – not counting my own of course Ha! – so I decided that I HAD to share the recipe with you all. The recipe comes straight from the Queen herself – Martha Stewart. The story goes, her daughter Alexis, did not like her Mom’s chocolate chip cookies – thought they needed more brown sugar. Martha went into the kitchen and developed these. Fabulous! You can Google these for Martha’s original recipe. The recipe that follows has my additions – or subtractions – from the original. My recipe fits my taste buds. Extra pure vanilla extract, longer bake time, etc.


Alexis’s Brown Sugar Chocolate Chip Cookies

1 pound (4 4oz sticks) unsalted butter, softened
3 cups light brown sugar, lightly packed
1 cup white granulated sugar
4 large eggs
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons baking soda
3 1/2 cups white all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips, coated in 1 tablespoon white all-purpose flour

Start by preheating your oven to 375 degrees F. Line several baking sheets with parchment paper. For these – only three cookies will fit on your typical baking sheet – so you may need to work in batches. 

In a large bowl cream together the soft unsalted butter, light brown sugar and white granulated sugar until light in color and fluffy in texture. 

Beat in the large eggs. Add pure vanilla extract, salt and baking soda. Combine. 

Gently fold in the white all-purpose flour. 

Fold in the prepared chocolate chips. 

Drop dough equal to the size of three tablespoons into 3 piles on the prepared baking sheets and bake in preheated oven for exactly 11 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool to room temperature. 

Enjoy! 

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Rocky Road Bark

I love the flavor combinations of rocky road and I love chocolate bark – so what could be better than combinding them together? The fabulous part about this recipe – aside from the fabulous results – is that the recipe can literally be transformed into millions of different flavor combinations! I use semi-sweet chocolate for the base but feel free to use bittersweet chocolate, milk chocolate, white chocolate or even a combination of chocolates all swirled together. Also top with anything your heart desires. Crushed up potato chips, crushed peppermint candies, dried fruit, candy sprinkles – ANYTHING! 

How fabulous is that!?

Rocky Road Bark

1 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 tablespoon solid vegetable shortening
2 cups chopped walnuts, lightly toasted
2 cups mini marshmallows
1 1/2 cups mini semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 cup white chocolate chips
1 tablespoon solid vegetable shortening

Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and place on top a sheet of parchment paper. 

In a large bowl combine the semi-sweet chocolate chips with the solid vegetable shortening. Microwave on high power 2 minutes, stirring every 30 seconds, until the chocolate is melted and smooth and glossy. 

Carefully pour the melted chocolate directly in the center of the parchment paper. Using the back side of a spoon spread the melted chocolate out into a rectangle about the size of 12 inches by 18 inches. You want the chocolate thin enough to snap when cooled but not too thin as to break when loading on the topping. Be careful not to make the chocolate too thick either or it will not form traditional bark. 

Once the chocolate is formed sprinkle on the lightly toasted walnuts, mini marshmallows and the mini semi-sweet chocolate chips.

In a microwave safe bowl combine the white chocolate chips with the solid vegetable shortening. Microwave on high power 2 minutes, stirring every 30 seconds until the white chocolate is melted and smooth and glossy. 

Take a spoon and drizzle the melted white chocolate over the entire surface of the bark. Use whatever pattern you desire but I think that a single line back and forth across horizontally looks the best. 

You may not use all of the white chocolate. 

Place into the refrigerator for 2 hours. 

Remove and carefully break the bark up into pieces. Store at room temperature. 

Enjoy!

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Nancy’s Peanut Butter Bars with Chocolate Ganache

I love Nancy Fuller and I love her cookbook and show on “Food Network”. This recipe is hers and it is fabulous! Chocolate and peanut butter – what could be better!? I have made a few changes to the recipe based on my personal taste buds.

Nancy’s Peanut Butter Bars with Chocoalte Ganache

1 1/2 cups confectioner’s sugar
1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1 cup smooth peanut butter
1 stick unsalted butter, melted
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup heavy cream

Prepare an 8×8-inch square baking dish by spraying with non-stick spray containing flour. 

In a large bowl combine the confectioner’s sugar, graham cracker crumbs, smooth peanut butter and melted unsalted butter. 

Once combined, pour into prepared pan and pat down evenly with clean hands. 

In a medium size microwave safe bowl combine the semi-sweet chocolate chips and heavy cream. Microwave in 30 second intervals until melted and smooth. Whisk until glossy. 

Pour carefully this mixture over the pressed peanut butter mixture and spread evenly. 

Refrigerate for one hour before cutting. 

Enjoy! 

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Baked Goods!


My “Blaise the Baker” baked goods will be featured at “The First Annual Henry County Church Chili Cook Off” on Saturday April 1st, 2017 from 5pm-7pm at the Memorial Wesleyan Church! Tickets are $5 and the proceeds are going to help send their missions group to Belize! Stop by for the chili cook off – bid on my desserts – and have a great time! What kind of desserts will be there!? I will be making my Chocolate chip cookies, Brownie Truffles, Cinnamon Rolls w/frosting, Elvis Brownies… and some other surprises! Hope to see you all there!!! For more information contact blaisethebaker@gmail.com 

Blaise 

Chew This! Lunch Lady Brownies 

Happy “Chew This!” Sunday! Just to catch up those who may not already know – I write a food column in “The Courier-Times” that appears on the first and third Sundays of each month. You can pick up a copy of the paper if you are in the Henry County, Indiana area OR view it online (with a paid subscription) at http://thecouriertimes.com. I love doing this and it gives me such an incredible opportunity to share with everyone my love for family, food, memories and recipes. 

Today’s column is for “Lunch Lady Brownies”. Food trends come and go and most recently the food trend of “Cafeteria Classics” has started – and does not look to be going anywhere anytime soon – thankfully! I love memories of school cafeteria food, cafeteria classics – all so nostalgic. These brownies are delicious – and so easy! They are the perfect mix of cake and fudge and the frosting has to be put on while the brownies are still warm! Trust me on this. Highly recommend you try this! 

ALSO – in my “Ask and Answer” section – I talk about riced cauliflower and give a recipe for cauliflower pizza crust! 

What is your favorite “Cafeteria Classic”? Have a favorite food or favorite food memory (or recipe) to share with me? Email me! blaisethebaker@gmail.com 


Lunch Lady Brownies

http://www.thecouriertimes.com/neighbors/neighbors_features/article_c3289943-51f2-518a-8a20-e7b50ac868f0.html

Enjoy! 

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Chew This! Chocolate Chip Cookie Pie

Happy “Chew This!” Sunday!!! As many of you know, I write a food column for “The Courier-Times” on the first and third Sundays of each month called “Chew This!” I absolutely love it and love sharing my family recipes, stories and memories. If you are in the Henry County, Indiana area – pick up a copy of the newspaper today and let me know what you think! If you are not, but would still like to take a look, sign up for an online subscription at http://thecouriertimes.com Need help with the online signing up!? Write to me and I will be happy to help! blaisethebaker@gmail.com 

I am so excited to share this recipe with everyone. Well recipes – there are two here that I am sharing. The pie crust is from a friend of mine, Dorothy Boulanger and could not be any more simple! The pie crust does not have to be rolled out, prebaked, proofed – trust me – it is amazing! And the filling? It is basically a huge, soft chocolate chip cookie! The crust is crisp, the inside warm and gooey. My mouth is watering… 

This pie can be made in advance, wrapped and chilled and baked off whenever you are ready! Just be sure not to keep it unbaked for longer than 3 days. After baking, leftovers can be kept covered for 7 days. It is simply an amazing pie and one of my current favorites! 


Chocolate Chip Cookie Pie

http://www.thecouriertimes.com/neighbors/neighbors_features/article_5c35a6df-f992-5fc7-9ed6-de61970494da.html

Enjoy!

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Chew This – Chocolate Snickerdoodles

Happy “Chew This!” Sunday! As many of you already know, I write a twice monthly column that appears in “The Courier-Times” on the 1st and 3rd Sundays of every month. I LOVE it and it is such a great opportunity for me to share my love of food, recipes, family and memories with all of you! If you live in the Henry County, Indiana area – pick up a copy! If you do not – you can subscribe online! Visit http://thecouriertimes.com for more information or email me at blaisethebaker@gmail.com and I would be happy to help you set up an account! 

Today’s column is all about taking a classic cookie and giving it a “twist”! My “Chocolate Snickerdoodles” were born out of an idea I had to add chocolate to your traditional Snickerdoodle cookie recipe. After many trials and errors I found the perfect combination of chocolate, texture and familiar “Snickerdoodle” flavor. My taste testers and I found these to be incredible! 

Also in today’s column, my “Ask and Answer” feature answers your questions on the “perfect pie crust”! I have some tips and tricks that you will need to read and follow for that “foolproof” pastry! 


Chocolate Snickerdoodles

http://www.thecouriertimes.com/neighbors/neighbors_features/article_6305cea3-73f8-55ac-b326-214679c89d1b.html

Enjoy!

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Black and White Cookies

These cookies should not be confused with the popular New York “Black and White Cookie” – a cakey cookie with two different colored sides. Think of this cookie as a white chocolate chip cookie with cocoa powder added to the dough. My friend Karen sent me a version of this recipe from a Mrs. Fields cookie cookbook and I could not have been more excited. I love Mrs. Fields cookies but I really think this version beats their popular and familiar cookie. Stir up a batch and let me know what you think! Email me at blaisethebaker@gmail.com

I have also opened up my “Blaise the Baker SHOP” on my Facebook page. Join me there at http://facebook.com/blaisethebaker Right now my only product available is my cookbook, “Blaise the Baker Dessert First” but stay tuned for additional items which will be added in the future.

Black and White Cookies

2 sticks (8 oz) unsalted butter, soft
1 cup dark brown sugar, packed
3/4 cup white granulated sugar
3 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
2 1/4 cups white all-purpose flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips mixed with 1 tablespoon white all-purpose flour
1 cup white chocolate chips mixed with 1 tablespoon white all-purpose flour

Start by preheating your oven to 300 degrees F. Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper.

In a large bowl combine the soft unsalted butter, dark brown sugar and white granulated sugar. Once combined and throughly mixed add in the large eggs. 

Beat well before adding in the pure vanilla extract. 

In another bowl whisk together the white all-purpose flour, unsweetened cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Add this in small increments to the wet ingredients and stir well. 

Once all combined and mixed, stir in the white all-purpose flour coated chips. Be careful not to over mix the dough.  

Drop by rounded tablespoon size balls onto the prepared baking sheets. Bake one sheet at a time in preheated oven for 23 minutes exactly.

Once baked, remove from the oven and allow the cookies to cool before removing them from the baking sheet. 

Enjoy! 

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Ultimate Double Chocolate Chip Cookies – Crisco 

I have fond memories of my Grandma Deloris and I making roll out sugar cookies for Christmas using “Criso” brand, butter flavored shortening. I still remember seeing the yellow tub on the counter and being inquisitive, mainly because I had never seen, or used it, before. She explained to me that this was her “secret ingredient” in making the cookies. That amazed me and every time I see that familiar yellow tub / container, I think of her and her Christmas sugar cookies.

I was, however, familiar with the blue wrapped version of this same product – which is just “Crisco” shortening. That was, and still is, my Grandma Barbra’s secret ingredient in her pie crusts and certain types of cakes.

While browsing the grocery store a few weeks ago, I decided to buy the butter flavored shortening, “Crisco” brand of course, just for nostalgic purposes. I was surprised that the labeling had not changed that much. I put it into my cart and took it home to my pantry.

A couple weeks later I noticed there was a recipe on the side of the labeling for “Ultimate Double Chocolate Chip Cookies”. I have never been one to turn down a chocolate chip cookie or a chocolate chip cookie recipe for that matter, so I decided to give these a try.

I was a little unsure at first, but after baking, and my first bite – I was a believer! They were, and are, absolutely fabulous! I changed a couple of things from their original recipe, but not much.

Their recipe can be found on their website or on the side of their butter flavored shortening container. My recipe can be found below. Whichever you decide to make, make them! They are yet another delicious chocolate chip cookie that I will be adding to my “cookie rotation”. My test testers loved these and I think you will too. Do not replace the shortening for butter because you will not have the same taste, texture or results.


Ultimate Double Chocolate Chip Cookies – Crisco

1 1/4 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
3/4 cup “Crisco” butter flavored shortening
2 tablespoons whole milk
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
1 large egg
1 3/4 cup white all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips, mixed with 1 tablespoon white all-purpose flour

Start by preheating the oven to 375 degrees F. and line two large baking sheets with parchment paper.

In a large bowl combine the light brown sugar, butter flavored shortening, whole milk and pure vanilla extract until light and fluffy.

Next, add in the large egg and combine well.

Add in the white all-purpose flour, salt and baking soda. Be careful not to over work the dough.

Finally, stir in the white all-purpose flour coated semi-sweet chocolate chips.

Drop by larger tablespoon size amounts onto prepared baking sheets.

Bake, one sheet at a time, in preheated oven for exactly 12 minutes. Once baked, remove from the oven and allow to cool at room temperature.

Enjoy!

For more “Crisco” pure vegetable oil recipes, please click here – http://crisco.com/recipes

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