Chew This! Monica’s Love Brownies

Monica's Love Brownies

Thank you to all of those who pick up a copy of “The Courier-Times” on the first and third Sunday’s of each month to check out my newest “CHEW THIS!” column features and recipes. Really means a lot to me. I appreciate your support and dedication. My newest column, last Sunday, was a recipe for “Monica’s Love Brownies”!

The following “Chew This!” column has been reprinted from “The Courier-Times”, Sunday, April 1st 2018 edition. By: Blaise Doubman

Spreading Love and Brownies
Blaise Doubman

I am a huge cookbook lover and collect cookbooks the way some people may collect stamps, coins or knickknacks. One of my current favorite cookbooks is “The Best of Better Baking.com” written by: Marcy Goldman. It is filled with delicious, and easy, recipes that I turn to time and time again for foolproof baking. She is one of my culinary inspirations who has written, and self-published, several cookbooks on a variety of topics. When I was shopping around my debut cookbook I remember speaking to Marcy about it and asking for her help. She was more than happy to take me under her wing and share some of her greatest advice as a baker, a cookbook author and a self-publisher. After I spoke to her, I immediately called and emailed the publishers that were looking over my cookbook and pulled out of all possible deals. My goal was clear to me and that was to self-publish my cookbook and expand my brand on my own. If a publisher got wind of my success and offered to publish, great! If not, the time would come, and things would fall into place as they should. Between Marcy and my friend Donna Cronk, I had all the self-publishing guidelines and tips that I needed to make a clear-headed decision. My gut instinct was right and here we are!

In expanding my brand, I decided to try a “Blaise the Baker Mail Order Dessert Delivery” service. Without going into detail, there needs to be more research done! Ha! It was an enjoyable experimentation, but right now food writing and recipe developing keep me busy enough. Plus, there was something lacking in it to me and that was the hand to hand, eye to eye, delivery to the actual customer. I missed seeing someone’s eyes sparkle at the delivery of a fabulous dessert or their big bright smile when they see a dessert delivery coming their way. Take for example my friend and taste tester, Dr. Monica Price Kowaleski. She is one of the most trusted eye care professionals in Greenfield, an optometrist operating a family owned business (Price Eye Care Inc. located at 946 N State Street in Greenfield) and a very dear friend to my family and I. A few months back, during an eye visit, I brought in some brownies that I had developed based off one of Marcy Goldman’s brownie recipes. Monica and her staff flipped over them and that was all I needed to know that the recipe I was tinkering with was perfect. I named this recipe after my friend Monica and would highly recommend you stir up a batch of these! Feel free to leave out the chocolate chips and walnuts for a smoother finish brownie but be sure to make these in advance. These delicious brownies take time and prepping ahead!

Monica’s Love Brownies

These brownies are best made in advance because they need to set up properly and rest awhile before enjoying. At first look you may think these brownies may be too rich but they really are not! They are thick and chewy with a delicious chocolate flavor that the coffee really helps carry through. These also freeze beautifully! Some of my taste testers prefer to eat them directly from the freezer! Regardless, these need to be eaten chilled.

4 sticks (16 oz) unsalted butter
2 cups white granulated sugar
1 ½ cups light brown sugar, packed
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
2 teaspoons instant coffee granules
6 large eggs
1 cup, plus 5 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
2 cups white all-purpose flour
¼ teaspoon baking soda, heaping
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips, optional
2 cups chopped nuts, optional

Start by preheating your oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a 9×13-inch baking pan with non-stick cooking spray containing flour. Line the bottom of the pan with parchment paper and lightly spray again with the non-stick cooking spray containing flour.

In a microwave safe bowl, microwave the unsalted butter until melted, about 2 minutes. Remove and add in the white granulated sugar, packed light brown sugar, pure vanilla extract and instant coffee granules. Beat well until the mixture is thick and combined.

Beat in the large eggs, one at a time, beating about 50 strokes to incorporate each egg before adding another egg. Once all the eggs are thoroughly beaten in, beat another minute.

Add in the unsweetened cocoa powder, white all-purpose flour, baking soda and salt all at once. Gently, and patiently, fold in until no dry ingredients remain in the batter.

Gently fold in the chocolate chips and or walnuts, if using.

Scoop the batter gently into the prepared pan and spread well and even out the top.

Place in preheated oven for exactly 43 minutes. The top will be set but will not look dry.

Remove from the oven and let cool to room temperature. Once at room temperature, place, uncovered, in the freezer for 2 hours. After gently frozen, flip brownies, or lift out, onto a clean work surface. Peel off the parchment paper and cut brownies into desired sizes.

Serve immediately or wrap in plastic wrap and store in the freezer or refrigerator.

Ask and Answer: I have received several questions about my previous column for “Funfetti Cake Balls” and if you can use different flavors of cake mix for this recipe. The answer? Yes! Use whatever flavor of cake mix you would like, just adjust the outer coating to match the cake ball flavor. Also, lots of questions pertaining to my upcoming second cookbook. To answer your questions, there is currently no release date sat and no preorders being taken. All I can say is that the book is scheduled to be released later this year, 2018. Thank you for the interest.

PIN IT: https://pin.it/n4zgf43jypgpsq

Advertisements

Chew This! Funfetti Cake Balls

Funfetti Cake Balls

Thank you to all of those who pick up a copy of “The Courier-Times” on the first and third Sunday’s of each month to check out my newest “CHEW THIS!” column features and recipes. Really means a lot to me. I appreciate your support and dedication. My newest column, last Sunday, was a recipe for “Funfetti Cake Balls”! So fun!

The following “Chew This!” column has been reprinted from “The Courier-Times”, Sunday, March 18th 2018 edition. By: Blaise Doubman

Funfetti Cake Balls Bring Big Smiles
Blaise Doubman

Recently I announced publicly on my social media pages, that for the past 18 months I have been secretly writing my second cookbook! The responses I got back were overwhelming! So many people were just as enthused and excited as I was sharing the news! After I wrote my first cookbook, I never did think I was “finished” with writing and sharing recipes in that way. At the same time though, I could not really tell you when my second cookbook would come together, if at all. People would ask me about it and I would just shrug my shoulders and tell them to stay tuned. I guess in the back of my mind, I knew after the first cookbook was published, that I was not done with things because I had so many more family recipes and stories to share. Developing recipes, testing recipes and sharing recipes is something that I truly love. When I find something good, read something I love, taste something out of the ordinary, see a movie I think is fascinating or hear a song that puts me in a good mood the first thing I want to do is share it! I want to share it with anyone and everyone I know, and sometimes, more often than not, share it with people I do not know! Ha! I love to share the things I love with people.

I love it too, when I bake something and immediately it puts a big smile on people’s faces! This is exactly what happened with my newest creation, “Funfetti Cake Balls”! Cake balls and even cake pops for that matter, are nothing new, but my newest creation combines one of America’s most loved cakes, Funfetti, with a delicious white almond bark coating and a sprinkling of rainbow sprinkles, just for fun. These are perfect for birthday parties, baby showers, wedding showers, anniversary parties, pitch-ins, get togethers, anything and everything you name it! Sprinkle the tops with rainbow sprinkles or even get creative with crushed up chocolate cookies, chocolate sprinkles or different flavors and colors of sanding sugars. Most often when making cake pops, or even brownie pops, you first must bake the cake, or brownies, allow to cool, crumble in a bowl, add frosting, and on and on. Not these! These are simple, foolproof and fun to make. This recipe would be a perfect hands on activity for children in the kitchen. And as far as my second cookbook, it will be released sometime in 2018, still not sure on an exact release date, but once I know more about it I will share the details here with all you.

Funfetti Cake Balls

These are best eaten the day they are made but can be kept covered, at room temperature, for 48 hours. The leftover white almond bark can be used in a variety of ways such as dipping wavy-style potato chips, pretzel rods or a vast array of cut fruits. Simple dip away your desired edible and immediately sprinkle with rainbow sprinkles. Allow to set up at room temperature for several minutes before serving and enjoying.

1 stick (4 oz) unsalted butter, melted
1 ½ cups Funfetti cake mix
½ cup white granulated sugar
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
Rainbow sprinkles
2 boxes white almond bark candy coating
1 tablespoon solid vegetable shortening

Start by lining a baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a large bowl combine the melted unsalted butter with the Funfetti cake mix, white granulated sugar and pure vanilla extract. Feel free to mix in a few heaping tablespoons of the rainbow sprinkles to the mix if you want sprinkles throughout the cake balls.

Once the ingredients are combined and a dough is formed, roll into balls slightly smaller than a tablespoon. Place the rolled balls onto the parchment lined baking sheet.

Place the baking sheet into the freezer for 15 minutes.

Prepare the candy coating by placing both boxes into a large microwave safe bowl. Microwave on high for 2 minutes, stirring every 30 seconds. Towards the end of the melting process, add in the tablespoon of solid vegetable shortening and stir well to combine. Continue microwaving until the candy coating is smooth and glossy, being careful not to scorch the coating.

Remove the balls from the freezer and start to dip them in the melted candy coating. This needs to be a fast job because the candy coating starts to harden quickly. What you need to do is place a couple of the frozen balls into the melted coating, roll around using two forks to ensure even coating, carefully remove excess candy and place balls back onto the parchment lined baking sheet. Immediately sprinkle over the rainbow sprinkles.

Continue with this method until all the balls are dipped and adored with sprinkles.

Allow the coating to set up completely before serving and enjoying, about 15 minutes.

Ask and Answer: Inga Brown Neal, of local “Temptations” fame, had a suggestion with my previous column for “Mini Baked Apple Pies”. She said that she would fill the pies with apple butter and she wouldn’t use glaze, instead she would use just sugar. I thought this was a fabulous idea and promised her if I used the recipe I would credit her, so here it is! Shout out and special thanks to Inga for the suggestion. Also, some special thanks go out to Inga for delivering some of the best potato soup I have ever had from her business “Temptations”. Thanks again Inga!

PIN IT: https://pin.it/wo4xusnf7tf4dn

Salted Chocolate Chip Shortbread Cookies

The World is going crazy over the infamous “Salted Chocolate Chip Shortbread Cookies”! I made them and was actually disappointed. I went back into the kitchen and made some changes – honestly I think mine are so much better! And yes – this is what recipe development and recipe testing looks like on paper – A MESS!

Good thing I can read it!!! Ha!

Will post the finished recipe once it is completed.

Blaise

New York Black and White Cookies

These are just like the ones you find in and around the New York City area! They are almost like miniature cookie cakes! Delicious! And yes – I know this is a terrible photo! Ha! I am a food writer and recipe developer – not a photographer.

New York Black and White Cookies

2 sticks (8 oz) unsalted butter
1 3/4 cups white granulated sugar
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
4 large egg whites
3/4 cup milk
4 cups cake flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt

Start by preheating the oven to 375 degrees F. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper.

In a large bowl beat the unsalted butter until creamy. Add in the white granulated sugar, slowly, beating well after each addition.

Add the pure vanilla extract and large egg whites and beat until the mixture is light in color and fluffy in texture.

In another large bowl whisk together the cake flour, baking powder and salt.

Add the flour mixture and milk to the beaten butter mixture in 3 additions each – starting with the flour mixture.

Drop 1/4-cup size amounts of dough onto parchment lined baked sheets. Place about 3-4 cookies at a time on each baking sheet.

With a wet knife, spread each cookie into a 3-inch round creating a smooth surface.

Bake the cookies, one sheet at a time, in preheated oven for 9 minutes, being sure to rotate each sheet halfway through the baking time.

Remove and allow to cool before frosting.

To make the frosting combine 6 cups confectioners’ sugar with 1/4 cup milk and 2 teaspoons vanilla extract. When combined and smooth, take half of this mixture and place into another bowl and combine with 4 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder.

Each frosting should be on the thicker side, but still spreadable. Carefully adjust the confectioners’ sugar and milk in each frosting until you reach desired consistency.

Frost half of one side of the cookie with the vanilla frosting and the other half with chocolate. Lay out at room temperature for about an hour before enjoying. This ensures the frosting to set up properly.

Leftovers should be kept in a sealed storage container at room temperature.

Enjoy!

PIN IT: https://pin.it/26v6eimlvv7efx

Chew This! Mini Baked Apple Pies

Mini Baked Apple Pies

Thank you to all of those who pick up a copy of “The Courier-Times” on the first and third Sunday’s of each month to check out my newest “CHEW THIS!” column features and recipes. Really means a lot to me. I appreciate your support and dedication. My newest column, last Sunday, was a recipe for “Mini Baked Apple Pies”! When I tested these, my taste testers went crazy!

Highly recommend you try these…

The following “Chew This!” column has been reprinted from “The Courier-Times”, Sunday, March 4th 2018 edition. By: Blaise Doubman

A Mini Twist on Apple Pie
Blaise Doubman

Spring is just around the corner and with a new season, new recipes always enter my mind. Spring, to me, means not only warmer weather and flowers blooming, but also fresh fruits and garden planting season, lemonade and brisk evenings. I have been on a “pie quest” for several months now, trying to learn more about pies, their history, different crusts, fillings, new and delightful taste combinations, not to mention delightful recipe tests – and I have still a way to go, but continuous learning is the way of life. Take your basic apple pie for example. There are literally hundreds, if not thousands, of different ways that people make their apple pies! Some people add raisins to their filling, while others add a little blueberry or a twist of lemon. Some people pile their apples high and add maple syrup over the top before placing on the crust, while others cook down the apples until almost a thick glaze forms around the bottom and dots butter over the top before placing on the crust. And, let us take the crust for example! Do you make your crust with lard? Butter? Shortening? A combination? Do you add cheese? Mayonnaise? I am fascinated by this and why people use and add what they do.

When developing the recipe, I am sharing here today with all of you, I wanted something basic and simple, but something that was new yet familiar. You can, by all means, make your own pie crust for this recipe, but I wanted to make it easy. As Food Network star Nancy Fuller always says, “Scratch made is best, unless you are stressed”. And that is so true! Do not be intimidated in the kitchen by making your own pie crust and do not be ashamed of buying refrigerated pie crust! A shortcut is a shortcut and there is nothing wrong with wanting to save time! I wanted this recipe to make mini pies that were baked in the oven and not fried. You can fry them if you wish. I also wanted to create a glaze for them, but these are also delicious eaten plain. They are also delicious crumbled up on vanilla ice cream but that is another story. I love recipes that are familiar, foolproof, delicious and flavorful and I hope you will enjoy these mini baked apple pies.

Mini Baked Apple Pies

These hand pies can be made with homemade dough rather than refrigerated dough, can be made with your favorite fruit filling and can be deep fried if desired. That is the beauty of this recipe, it is very versatile! The finished pies should be kept covered at room temperature and will last up to 3 days.

2 boxes refrigerated pie crust, at room temperature
1 can (21 oz) apple pie filling
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
3 cups confectioner’s sugar
¼ cup whole milk, plus 2 tablespoons
1 large egg white, lightly beaten

Start by preheating your oven to 425 degrees F.

Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper.

In a large bowl blend and mash the apple pie filling with a fork. Add in the ground cinnamon and pure vanilla extract, stirring to incorporate.

Unroll the pie crusts onto a lightly floured work surface. Using a cookie cutter, biscuit cutter or bottom of a narrow glass, cut out 6 circles from each pie crust. You should end up with 24 total circles and will have to work carefully in batches.

Place a heaping teaspoon of the apple mixture in the middle of each of the cut-out circles. Fold the circles over, crimping the sides tightly with a fork. Using the fork, poke the tops of each pie once to allow them to bake and steam evenly.

Brush the tops of each prepared pie with the large egg white. Place the pies onto the prepared baking sheets and bake, one sheet at a time, in preheated oven for 15 minutes. Once baked, remove from the oven and allow to cool only slightly before glazing.

In a large bowl whisk together, the confectioner’s sugar and whole milk to make the glaze. Drop the slightly warm pies into the large bowl of glaze and coat evenly. The easiest way to do this, is by using two forks and working carefully. Place the glazed pies onto the parchment lined baking sheets and allow to cool completely and allow the glaze to set up before serving and enjoying.

Ask and Answer: I posted a picture of some homemade croutons awhile back on my social media and several people wanted the recipe, so I thought I would share it here with everyone. The secret to good homemade croutons is in the kind of bread you use, and it may not be what you think! The secret? Hamburger buns! Take a pack of hamburger buns, cut into desired size and place on large baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt, pepper and choice of seasoning mix, if any. Toss together with clean hands. Bake in 425-degree oven until crisp, stirring every 5 minutes. Desired baking time, and crispness, is up to you. I bake mine about 20-25 minutes, stirring and flipping the croutons often. Serve in air-tight container for 3 days.

PIN IT: https://pin.it/nioafxrz3nlhme

Tiger Cookies

I have been wanting to add Frosted Flakes cereal to chocolate chips cookies forever – so I figure, why not today? I added Frosted Flakes and MINI chocolate chips instead of chunks or regular size and made them smaller than usual for that bite size crunch. These are GRRRRRRREAT! Ha!

Tiger Cookies

1 stick (4 oz) unsalted butter
6 tablespoons light brown sugar, packed
6 tablespoons white granulated sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
Heaping cup white all-purpose flour
2 cups Frosted Flakes
1 cup mini chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Line 2 baking sheets with parchment.

Cream together unsalted butter with the light brown sugar and white granulated sugar.

Add in large egg and pure vanilla extract. Beat together well.

Beat in baking soda and salt.

Stir in white all-purpose flour followed by the Frosted Flakes and the mini chocolate chips.

Place teaspoon size balls of dough onto prepared baking sheets. Bake, one sheet at a time, in preheated oven for 12 minutes.

Remove and cool.

Enjoy!

PIN IT: https://pin.it/jxenetcv42tx54

Quick Chocolate and Caramel Fudge and Quick Chocolate and Peanut Butter Fudge

I love a quick chocolate fudge! You know the kind – made with chocolate chips, a can of sweetened condensed milk and a little butter. Combine all in a large bowl and microwave until melted and smooth. Pour out, allow to cool and enjoy. But what could be better than this? Adding caramel or peanut butter to the mix! How? Do this –

Quick Chocolate and Caramel Fudge

Combine 12 oz semi-sweet chocolate chips in a large microwave safe bowl and add one can of sweetened condensed milk and 2 tablespoons butter. Place in microwave and microwave on high for 60 seconds. Remove and stir before microwaving another 30 seconds. Stir mixture until combined and smooth and glossy. Pour into a non-stick cooking spray sprayed foil lined 9×9-inch square pan and smooth out the top. Place about 1 cup baking caramels into a microwaveable safe bowl and add a splash of milk. Microwave about 60 seconds and remove and stir until smooth and glossy. Dollop blobs of the melted caramel on top of the fudge and swirl into the fudge using a knife. Place into the refrigerator until firm. Cut and serve. Enjoy!

Quick Chocolate and Peanut Butter Fudge

Combine 12 oz semi-sweet chocolate chips in a large microwave safe bowl and add one can of sweetened condensed milk and 2 tablespoons butter. Place in microwave and microwave on high for 60 seconds. Remove and stir before microwaving another 30 seconds. Stir mixture until combined and smooth and glossy. Pour into a non-stick cooking spray sprayed foil lined 9×9-inch square pan and smooth out the top. Place about 1/2 cup smooth peanut butter into a microwaveable safe bowl along with 2 tablespoons confectioners sugar. Microwave about 30 seconds and remove and stir until smooth and glossy. Dollop blobs of the melted peanut butter on top of the fudge and swirl into the fudge using a knife. Place into the refrigerator until firm. Cut and serve. Enjoy!

PIN IT: https://pin.it/sk5fv7gw7l4htx

Pumpkin Brownies with Maple Frosting

I have been on a brownie kick lately and have been experimenting with different flavor combinations. A few days ago I made my orange brownies and topped them with a new orange cream cheese frosting I had developed and everyone loved them! Awhile back I made some pumpkin brownies that people went wild for too and I decided to revisit those with a maple cream cheese frosting. These are fabulous! Save this recipe for your Fall and Thanksgiving tables but go ahead and whip up a batch now since the brownies are only 2 ingredients!

Pumpkin Brownies with Maple Frosting

For the brownies…
1 box yellow cake mix
1 can (15 oz) pure pumpkin

For the frosting…
8 oz cream cheese, softened
1 stick (4 oz) unsalted butter
1/4 cup pure maple syrup
3 cups confectioner’s sugar

Start by preheating your oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a 9×13-inch baking pan with non-stick cooking spray containing flour.

In a large bowl beat together the dry cake mix with the pure pumpkin until both are combined together. Pour this mixture into the prepared pan and spread evenly.

Bake in preheated oven 30 minutes.

Remove and allow to cool before frosting.

To make the frosting combine the cream cheese with the unsalted butter. Beat in the pure maple syrup followed by the confectioners sugar.

Frost brownies evenly. Cut and serve.

Enjoy!

PIN IT: https://pin.it/rohg57nsz63l4x

Chew This! Cindy’s Colossal Cookies

Pick up a copy of “The Courier-Times” TODAY to check out my newest “CHEW THIS!” column featuring my friend Cindy and the recipe for “Cindy’s Colossal Cookies”! Also my “Ask and Answer” features my answer to your questions about my peanut butter brownies! Thank you all for your continuous support and dedication! Enjoy!

The following “Chew This!” column has been reprinted from “The Courier-Times”, Sunday, February 18th 2018 edition. By: Blaise Doubman 

Friends Sharing Recipes…
Blaise Doubman

People always talk about the good and bad aspects of social media, Facebook for example, and really wonder if we have progressed because of this, or perhaps been taken back. I can see the good, as well as the bad, that social media presents, and I can see how some people will never fully understand what social media is capable of. I would like to think that social media is a tool best used in business and marketing development, as well as keeping close contact with family and friends who may live afar. I believe it is also a strong factor in forming friendships and strong bonds that without it, may have never existed. Take my friend Cindy Shelton and I for example. Both of us have lived in Kennard all our lives, yet only on occasion would see each other, wave across the street, then go about our busy lives, not really getting the chance to know one another. About 5 years ago though, that all changed when we became friends on Facebook. One thing led to another and before long we were like long lost friends. I consider Cindy to be one of my best friends today. She is one of the sweetest people I know, one of the most caring, compassionate and giving individuals that I have ever met. Ask anyone that knows her and they will mention her warmth, her smile or her infectious laugh. She is a devoted friend and a true gem of a woman and I have learned so much from her, including being a better and more understanding Christian person. Her husband, Pastor Danny Shelton and their family has become more like family than friends to my family and I and we cherish them so.

It is an ongoing joke that Cindy and the kitchen just do not get along, but let me tell you, I have seen, tasted and heard from many people that she is a good cook, just maybe lacks the confidence. So, imagine my surprise when she presented me with a handwritten recipe for part of my Christmas gift last year! It was a recipe handed down to her from a colleague she used to work with in Shirley, Indiana. The recipe was for “Colossal Cookies” and they sounded delicious! I could not wait to try them and within a week, I did. They were extraordinary! I usually pass out my treats and goodies, one reason being if not I would eat them all, but these cookies could not be shared! I simply had to eat every single last one! Ha! I am sharing this recipe with everyone here today and encouraging you to make these the next time you have a “cookie craving”! I am also naming them after my best friend Cindy and I want to give her a special shout out and thank you for allowing me to do so. Thank you Cindy!

Cindy’s Colossal Cookies

This dough can be made ahead, covered and refrigerated for up to 3 days. Refrigerating the dough turns the baked cookie into a thicker style cookie that is crispy outside and chewy on the inside. This dough also freezes well. Just take the dough and roll into tablespoon size balls and place on a baking sheet. Place into the freezer for one hour, until the dough balls are frozen solid. Pack away the frozen dough balls into freezer safe plastic storage bags and place in freezer. When ready to bake, remove however many you wish and bake in preheated oven!

1 stick unsalted butter, softened
1 ½ cups white granulated sugar
1 ½ cups light brown sugar, packed
4 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 ½ teaspoons baking soda
2 cups chunky peanut butter
6 cups quick cooking oats
12 oz bag semi-sweet chocolate chips

Start by preheating your oven to 350 degrees F. Line several large baking sheets with parchment paper. In a large bowl combine the softened unsalted butter, white granulated sugar and light brown sugar and beat until light and fluffy.

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

Beat in the peanut butter and combined until all ingredients are well mixed.

Add in the quick cooking oats, followed by the semi-sweet chocolate chips. This will take a little effort and can be done in batches if you wish. Just be sure to have the ingredients mixed well.

Drop the dough by rounded tablespoons onto the prepared baking sheets, leaving plenty of room between each cookie. Bake one baking sheet at a time, in preheated oven, for 12 minutes. Remove and allow the cookies to cool slightly before enjoying.

Ask and Answer: I have been getting a few questions concerning the peanut butter brownies I posted to my social media networks a couple of weeks back. People are anxious to know how I made them, so I thought I would share my technique here. Start with your favorite brownie recipe and pour that into a prepared pan. In a bowl combine 1 cup peanut butter with ¼ cup powdered sugar and 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract. Dollop the peanut butter mixture all over the top of the brownies and then gently swirl together with a knife. Bake as directed.

PIN IT: https://pin.it/wvet3ww72miucx

Foolproof Chocolate Truffles

I love truffles and this made from scratch version can be transformed into hundreds of different flavors! Stir in different extracts, roll in different sugars, roll in a variety of nuts or simply use different types of good quality chocolate. Fabulous!

Foolproof Chocolate Truffles

14 oz can sweetened condensed milk
1 cup bittersweet chocolate chips
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
Desired mix-ins, dippers and roll-ons

Start by lining a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Combine the sweetened condensed milk, bittersweet chocolate chips, semi-sweet chocolate chips and pure vanilla extract in a large microwave safe bowl. Microwave on high for 90 seconds. Stir and microwave again 30 seconds. Stir this mixture until smooth and combined. Microwave an additional 30 seconds if needed, watching not to burn the chocolate.

Once combined, wrap bowl in plastic wrap and refrigerate 40 minutes. Remove and roll firm chocolate mixture into small ball the size of two teaspoons. Place on prepared baking sheet.

Once all rolled, formed and placed, place baking sheet in freezer for 40 minutes.

Remove and decorate accordingly. Dip in melted chocolate, melted almond bark, roll in powdered sugar, cocoa powder, nuts etc. Let your imagination soar with this one!

Eat and serve immediately. Leave these truffles at room temperature.

Enjoy!

PIN IT: https://pin.it/mwg5o7dblvqdh3