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15 posts categorized "Chocolate"

July 10, 2014

Snickers Cupcakes - Chocolate Cupcakes with Caramel Frosting Stuffed with Salted Peanutes and Caramel

Snickers Cupcakes|The Crafting Foodie

So, I'm finally back with these Snickers Cupcakes! They're honestly the best chocolate, salted caramel, peanut treats you'll have in cupcake form ever. I mean it. EVER!

The renovation of our new home is finally over and we moved - yipeee! I'm slowly, but surely, getting everything unpacked. When I have an overwhelming task at hand (like unpacking a house), I like to set little milestones and celebrate once they're accomplished. On Friday I reached a major unpacking milestone when the kitchen and pantry were both set up and fully functioning. So, to celebrate I made these cupcakes.

Snickers Cupcake|The Crafting Foodie

Why Snickers Cupcakes you ask? Because I love Snickers Bars. They're chocolate with creamy, gooey caramel and crunchy, salty nuts. Amazing combo. And since I love cupcakes, I decided to turn my favorite candy bar into some cake goodness. Now I'm really thinking of turning these beauties into an actual, full-sized cake. The gears are turning, and I may give it a shot (probably sooner than later).

I can't figure out which part of these Snickers Cupcakes are my favorite. The chocolate cake is so moist and full of deep chocolate flavor. The caramel frosting is light and airy, and the filling is killer, the caramel mixed with the salted nuts. Yum! I'm thinking of making the filling by itself and just eating it with a spoon.

Snickers Stuffed Cupcakes|The Crafting Foodie

Almost every single sweet treat that I make is given away to friends. We hardly ever keep them in the house. I may save one or two for my husband and the kids, and I usually take a taste of one of them, just for taste test purposes ;) I was tempted to keep all of these, but my better judgment prevailed. I kept three Snickers Cupcakes at home, and they lasted a whole 15 minutes before being devoured!

How long do you think these would last in your house?

Snickers Chocolate CupcakesThe Crafting Foodie

This week my Snickers Cupcakes are linked to Nap-Time Creations awesome Summer Fun series. It's included with these other creative posts. Check them out, and get my recipe for the cupcakes below!

summer fun 6

DIY Dippin' Dot tutorial by Nap-Time Creations

Decorated Shoe Laces by A Girl and a Glue Gun on Nap-Time Creations

Chocolate Salted Caramel and Peanut Snickers Cupcakes with the Crafting Foodie

Busy Binder with Printable Road Trip Games by Cutesy Crafts

 

Chocolate Snickers Cupcake|The Crafting Foodie

Snickers Cupcakes

Ingredients for the Cupcakes

1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

3/4 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp salt

1 cup granulated sugar

1/3 cup vegetable oil (I've been using coconut oil, melted and cooled)

1 egg

1 tsp vanilla

3/4 cup milk

1 tbs vinegar (white or cider)

 

Directions for the cupcakes

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F, and line a standard, 12 muffin tin with paper liners. 

In a small measuring cup, mix the milk and vinegar. Allow it to sit and curdle.

In a small bowl, mix the flour, cocoa, baking soda, and salt. 

In the bowl of a mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, mix the sugar, oil, egg, and vanilla.

Mix the flour and milk mixture into the batter in three, alternating additions, starting and ending with the flour mixture. 

Bake for about 25 minutes (anywhere from 22 to 27 minutes) or until the cakes spring back when lightly pushed in the center.

Release the cupcakes from the tin, and allow them to cool completely on a drying rack.

 

Ingredients for the Salted Caramel Filling

1/2 cup granulated sugar

3 tbs unsalted butter, cubed

1/4 cup plus 1 tbs heavy cream

a generous pinch of sea salt

 

Instructions for the Salted Caramel Filling

In a heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium heat, melt the sugar until it's a deep amber.

Add the butter, and whisk until smooth.

Turning the heat to low, add the cream. Whisk until smooth.

Pour the warm caramel into a container and allow it to cool completely.

 

Ingredients for the Salted Caramel Frosting

1 1/2 cups unsalted butter at room temperature

2 1/2 cups powdered sugar

pinch of salt

1/3 of the salted caramel, thoroughly cooled to room temperature (recipe above)

 

Instructions for the Salted Caramel Frosting

In the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter until it's light and fluffy.

Add the powdered sugar, and mixing until thoroughly combined.

Add the pinch of salt and vanilla. Mix until combined.

Add the salted caramel sauce, and mix until combined.

 

Ingredients for assembling the Cupcakes

1/2 cup salted, roasted peanuts chopped

6 snack sized Snickers Bars cut in half

1/8 cup of chocolate chips melted

 

Instructions for Assembling the Snickers Cupcakes

Mix the chopped peanuts with 1/3 of the caramel mixture. Set aside.

Using a sharp paring knife, cut a circle with a 1 inch diameter into the center of each cupcake. Remove the circle, and core out the center of the cupcake.

Fill the center of each cupcake with about 1/2 tsp of caramel filling.

Place the salted caramel frosting into a piping bag fitted with the tip of your choice. Pipe the icing on top of the cupcake.

Drizzle the cupcake with melted chocolate. Sprinkle nuts on top, and place a piece of a Snickers bar into the center of each cupcake.

 

Yields 12 cupcakes

 

This post is linked to these parties.

 

April 18, 2014

Chocolate Pinata Birthday Cake Filled with Muddy Buddies for My Birthday!

Chocolate Birthday PinataCake with Muddy Buddies | The Crafting Foodie

So, what exactly does a blogger, obsessed with baking make for her own birthday? Well, the answer is simple: Whatever she wants! I give away almost everything I bake, and that gives me the freedom to try flavor combinations or techniques that I find intriguing - regardless of if they're my personal favorites. So when it's my birthday, I make whatever strikes my fancy. This year it's a pinata chocolate cake filled with muddy buddies!

Chocolate Pinata Cake with Muddy Buddies | The Crafting Foodie

Even though my sweet 5 year old requested a vanilla cake filled with various sprinkles, and my husband prefers red velvet; I knew it had to be a dark, rich, intense chocolate with dark chocolate frosting. (My 2 year-old was just excited for cake. Any cake.)

Chocolate Pinata Cake | The Crafting Foodie

I also knew that I wanted to incorporate my all-time favorite junk food - Chex cereal muddy buddies. If you're not familiar with muddy buddies (also known as puppy chow), I'm so sorry because you're totally missing out on a chocolaty, peanut buttery, powdered sugar treat that is crunchy and seriously addictive. (I've been known to eat a cup of this stuff at a time. A cup - 8 ounces. At one time.)

Muddy Buddy Pinata Cake | The Crafting Foodie

Then I had to figure out how to incorporate both of my loves - chocolate cake and muddy buddies into one birthday treat. The answer was to make a pinata cake. Pinata cakes and cookies are all over Pinterest these days. They're basically multi-layered cakes or cookies that have another confection hidden inside. When you break them open, the hidden treat comes tumbling out. 

Birthday Pinata Cake with Muddy Buddies | The Crafting Foodie

Making a pinata cake is really easy. I baked a three-layer cake. Once the cakes were cooled, I cut out a 5-inch circle out of the two bottom layers of the cake. Then while building the cake, after putting the two bottom layers together with dark chocolate frosting, I filled the hole in the center of the cake with my Chex muddy buddies. Then I topped the two bottom layers with a solid top layer.

Pinata Cake | The Crafting Foodie

With the cake flavors decided, I turned my attention to how I would frost the cake. I wanted something fancy, but also easy. My choice was a petal cake design. To decorate the cake, I simply crumb coated the entire cake. (Crumb coating a cake simply means I put a thin, thin, layer of frosting all over the cake to lock the crumbs into the frosting. If you skip crumb coating a cake, you run the risk of little bits of cake crumb getting into the final layer of frosting.)

Then I used a #10 Wilton tip to pipe a series of vertical dots.

Pinata Chocolate Cake | The Crafting Foodie

After piping each vertical row of dots, I used a small offset spatula to drag half of the dot out into the frosting, creating a petal effect.

Pinata Birthday Cake | The Crafting Foodie

Continue the same process all the way around the cake, and you get something like this:

Birthday Pinata Cake | The Crafting Foodie

For the top of the cake, I used the same technique to make an actual flower. It's such a simple technique that yields pretty stunning results.

Chocolate Birthday Pinata Cake | The Crafting Foodie

So, even though I didn't make that my sweet daughter requested or that I knew my husband would prefer, I think everyone was excited about this beauty.

Here's my favorite shot from my birthday. My 5 year old sitting on my lap, and me giving her kisses and so much love.  Spending my birthday with my healthy and happy family made it my absolute best birthday yet!

Birthday Cake | The Crafting Foodie

Chocolate Birthday Pinata Cake Stuffed with Muddy Buddies | The Crafting Foodie

 

Chocolate Pinata Birthday Cake Filled with Muddy Buddies

The recipe for the chocolate cake is the same recipe I used to make this Diary-Free Chocolate Cake. You can find the recipe and instructions here. (You can easily make this cake with dairy by simply replacing the almond or rice milk with cow's milk.)

 

Ingredients for the Muddy Buddies (or Puppy Chow)

This recipe is adapted from the Chex cereal box.

4 1/2 cups Chex cereal (you can use any variety, but I used the rice version which is gluten free)

3/4 cup smooth peanut butter

1/2 cup chocolate chips (I used semi-sweet chips)

1/4 cup butter

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 3/4 cup powdered sugar

 

Instructions for the Muddy Buddies

Measure the cereal into a large bowl, and set it aside.

Place the butter, peanut butter, and chocolate chips into a medium bowl. Microwave in 30 second increments, mixing between each increment until it is melted. Once the mixture is melted, add the vanilla. Mix to combine.

Pour the chocolate mixture over the cereal, and mix to combine.

Place the cereal mixture into a gallon-sized zip-top bag. Then pour the powdered sugar into the bag as well. Shake the cereal until it is completely coated in the sugar. Set aside.

 

Ingredients for the Dark Chocolate Frosting*

15 ounces bitter-sweet chocolate (I used chocolate with 70% cocoa), melted and cooled

1 1/2 lbs unsalted butter, at room temperature

8 cups of powdered sugar

3/4 cup of sour cream

3/4 tsp of salt

1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

*In order to decorate the cake as shown in my post, it takes quite a bit of frosting. If you plan to just frost the cake without the petal decorations, you may want to consider only making half of the frosting recipe.

 

Instructions for the Dark Chocolate Frosting

Melt the chocolate. I usually melt chocolate in the microwave, but since it's 15 ounces of chocolate (nearly a pound), I chose the melt the chocolate over a double boiler. That simply means that I placed bowl filled with the chocolate over a pot of simmering water. Warm until the chocolate is completely melted and smooth. Set the chocolate aside to cool. 

In a mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the sugar until it is light and fluffy. Add the melted and cooled chocolate, salt, and vanilla. Mix until combined.

Slowly add the powdered sugar. Mix until combined.

Add the sour cream, and beat until the frosting is fluffy.

 

Instructions for Assembling the Cake

Please read the post above. I describe how to build a pinata cake, and how to frost the cake.

Yields one 3-layer 9-inch cake.

 

This link is posted to these parties.

 

 

April 12, 2014

Mini Banana Bundt Cakes with Dark Chocolate, Roasted Pecans, and Salted Caramel Sauce

Mini-Banana Bundt With Salted Caramel Sauce | The Crafting Foodie

If you follow the Crafting Foodie, or if you're visiting for the first time, you'll notice that I'm obsessed with love baking. And based upon my blog, it may seem reasonable to think that we live on sugar and baked goods in my home. But in reality, baking is just one part of who I am. I also enjoy knitting, crafting, cooking (real food), and I really, really love running. Now that I'm running outside again after a torturously long winter running on the treadmill, I'm slowly building up my mileage and endurance. I'm at about 25-30 miles a week. I'm getting there slowly but surely :)

Mini-Banan Bundts | The Crafting Foodie

Like so many of you, my days are jam-packed with deadlines, checklists, errands, plus all that comes along with being a wife and mother. So I often find myself eating on the go. My number one, go-to snack for convenience and nutrition (plus they're nice and filling) is a banana. If I don't eat nutritious foods, no matter how hydrated and rested I think I am, I'm completely depleted after my run. That being said, our house is always well stocked with bananas. Which generally is a good thing. They're almost always eaten or put in a smoothie before they get too mushy.

But last week a whole batch of bananas sat untouched, as we were all battling the stomach flu. As we recovered, I knew I could put those blackened bananas to good use in these mini-banana bundt cakes with dark chocolate, roasted pecans, and salted caramel sauce.

Banana Bundts with Caramel | The Crafting Foodie

This recipe may sound fancy, but the whole thing comes together in about 15 minutes. Of course I had my favorite sous chef helping me. She mixed the batter pretty much herself. The only portion of the batter I handled was cutting the nuts and chocolate.

Banana Bundt Cake with Salted Caramel | The Crafting Foodie

While the cakes baked, I made the salted caramel sauce. If you're intimidated by making caramel, this is the sauce for you. It requires no thermometer and no special equipment. My only suggestion is to use a pot that is quite large because when adding the cream to the hot sugar/water mixture it bubbles quite vigorously. Other than that, it's a very straightforward and difficult-to-mess-up recipe.

You can make this recipe in a regular loaf pan, but I used this pan instead. Each mini-bundt cake is probably a bit smaller than a cupcake, so not only are these super cute, but they're also good for portion control. (That is if you don't eat five of them at a time, like I do!)

Mini-Banana Bundt with Salted Caramel| The Crafting Foodie
 

Mini-Banana Bundt Cakes with Dark Chocolate, Roasted Pecans, and Salted Caramel Sauce

 

The cake recipe is slightly adapted from Cooks Illustrated

Ingredients for the Mini-Banana Bundt Cakes

2 cups all-purpose flour

10 tbs granulated sugar

3/4 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp salt

1 1/4 cups toasted pecans roasted and chopped

5 ounces of bittersweet chocolate grated

4 very ripe bananas, mashed well

1/3 cup plain yogurt

2 large eggs, lightly beaten

6 tbs unsalted butter, melted and cooled

1 tsp vanilla extract

 

Instructions for the Mini-Banana Bundt Cakes

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F

Place the pecans on a baking sheet, in a single layer. Roast in the oven for about 8-12 minutes, turning once as they roast. Remove the nuts from the oven, and allow them to cool before chopping.

Combine the flour, sugar, baking soda, salt, walnuts, and chocolate in a large bowl. Mix to combine.

Mix the mashed bananas, yogurt, eggs, butter and vanilla in a medium bowl.

Gently fold the wet ingredients into the dry.

Spray the mini-bundt pan with a cooking spray that contains flour. Make sure to grease the pan well. Fill each cavity of the cake pan about 2/3 full.

Bake for about 20 minutes.

Remove from oven, and remove the cakes from the pan immediately. Allow them to cool on a wire rack.

Yields about 18 to 20 mini-bundt cakes.

 

Ingredients for the Salted Caramel Sauce

Adapted from Bon Appetite Magazine

1 1/2 cups granulated sugar

1/4 cup water

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

1 cup heavy cream

2 tsp flakey sea salt

 

Instructions for the Salted Caramel Sauce

In a large, heavy bottom saucepan, add the sugar and water. Stir over medium heat until the sugar just dissolves.

Increase the heat. Do not mix the sugar and water. Allow the mixture to boil and turn deep amber brown. This will take about 7 to 10 minutes.

Remove the pan from the heat. Add the cream and vanilla. The mixture will boil vigorously. (Thus it is imperative to use a large pot when making the caramel sauce.) Once the mixture has calmed down, add the salt.

Return the mixture back to the stove, and on medium-low heat, allow the mixture to reduce slightly. This will take about 8 minutes.

Chill the mixture until thickened.

 

Instructions for Assembling the Mini-Banana Bundt Cakes

Once the bundt cakes have cooled completely, trim the bottom of each cake so that it is level.

Pour the thickened caramel sauce over the cakes, allowing it to drip over the sides of the cake.

Sprinkle some flake sea salt over the tops of the cakes.

 

This post is linkd to these parties.

 

April 4, 2014

S'more Cupcakes - Chocolate Cupcakes with a Graham Cracker Crust, Chocolate Ganache Filling, and Topped with a Fluffy Marshmallow Frosting

S'more Chocolate Cupcakes|The Crafting Foodie

It's been a tough week around our house. The stomach bug hit us, and it hit us hard. Thankfully we're all better, and it makes me that much more grateful for our health. So after disinfecting our home, and doing about 50 loads of laundry, I made s'more cupcakes. Why s'more cupcakes? Well because after the week we had, we needed a treat.

S'more Chocolate Graham Crust Cupcakes|The Crafting Foodie

At first, I was just planning to make some good 'ol chocolate cupcakes. Something quick. Then, I thought, let's put something crunchy in there. When I came across some graham crackers, it hit me: s'more cupcakes!

Since I bake so often, my pantry and fridge are always well stocked. (I like to refer to it as being "well stocked" and others in my family, like my husband, like to call it "hording." Either way I almost always have the ingredients to make a sweet treat with very little planning.) My well-stocked pantry (or hording) meant that I even had a jar of marshmallow cream! So, fluffy marshmallow frosting would top this baby off. To give the cupcakes even more of a s'more feeling, before piping a generous amount of frosting on to each cupcake, I dipped the top in chocolate ganache. Then dipped the edges of the cupcake in graham cracker crumbs.

S'more Cupcakes|The Crafting Foodie

Since I had the bottom and top of the cupcake all s'mored out, I didn't want the inside of the cupcake to feel left out. So I decided to fill it up with some milk chocolate ganache. I almost always use dark chocolate in my baking (and my straight-up chocolate eating), but s'mores require milk chocolate, usually in the form of Hershey's. Yup, happened to have some mini-size milk chocolate Hershey's Bars in the back of the pantry too.

There you have it - s'more cupcakes. The perfect way to end a horrible week!

S'moreCupcakes|The Crafting Foodie
 

S'more Cupcakes

 

Ingredients for the Graham Cracker Crust

4 full graham crackers

1/4 stick (2 tbs) unsalted butter, melted

1/8 cup granulated sugar

 

Instructions for the Graham Cracker Crust

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Line a 12-cup, cupcake tin with paper liners.

Crush the graham crackers into fine crumbs. (I placed the crackers in a large, zip-top bag and crushed them with a wooden rolling pin.)

Mix the graham cracker crumbs with the sugar and melted butter. Divide the crust mixture into 12 equal parts, and place at the bottom of each cupcake liner. Pat the crust down with the back of a spoon to create a well-packed crust.

Bake for 5 to 8 minutes or until golden. Remove from the oven, and proceed with the recipe.

 

Ingredients for the Cupcakes

Adapted from the chocolate cupcake in the book Cupcakes! by Elinor Klivans

Ingredients

1 1/2 ounces bittersweet chocolate - chopped

1 1/2 ounces semisweet chocolate - chopped

1 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp salt

1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened

1 1/4 cups granulated sugar

2 large eggs at room temperature

1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

1/2 cup strong brewed coffee, cooled

1/2 cup strained yogurt (or sour cream) (To strain yogurt, simply place it in a fine-meshed strainer lined with paper towels. Place the strainer over a bowl. Allow it to sit in the refrigerator for a few hours.)

 

Instructions for the Cupcakes

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Melt both chocolates until smooth. You can melt the chocolate in a double boiler, but I prefer to melt chocolate in the microwave. I place the chocolate in the microwave and warm it in 30-second intervals. Mixing the chocolate after each interval. Once the chocolate is almost melted, remove it from the microwave. Mix the chocolate until it is smooth. Place it off to the side to cool off a bit.

In a medium bowl, sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

In the bowl of a mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar for about 2-3 minutes until light and fluffy. Scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary.

Stop the mixer and add in the melted chocolates. Mix until the chocolates are just incorporated.

Add the eggs and mix until the eggs are just incorporated.

Next add the vanilla and yogurt (or sour cream). Mix until streaks of white from the yogurt or sour cream are completely incorporated into the mixture.

Finally, add the dry ingredients and coffee alternately in three additions, starting and ending with the dry ingredients. Mix until just incorporated.

Fill the cupcake liners 2/3 full. Bake in the center of the oven for 18-20 minutes. Remove the cupcakes from the oven when the centers of the cupcakes no longer jiggle.

Cool the cupcakes on a wire rack until completely cool.

 

Ingredients for Semisweet Chocolate Ganache

12 ounces of semisweet chocolate, chopped fine

1 cup heavy cream

1 tsp good quality vanilla extract

 

Instructions for the Semisweet Chocolate Ganache

Place the chopped chocolate in a large bowl.

Warm the cream until it's just about to boil.

Pour the warm cream over the chocolate. Allow it to sit for a minute or two. Then mix until the chocolate is fully melted and the mixture is shiny.

Add the vanilla and mix to combine.

Place the ganache in the refrigerator and allow it to cool and thicken. 

 

Ingredients for the Fluffy Marshmallow Frosting

1 7-ounce container of marshmallow cream

1 1/2 sticks (12 tbs) unsalted butter, softened

1 1/2 cups powdered sugar

1/8 tsp salt

1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

 

Instructions for the Fluffy Marshmallow Frosting

Cream the marshmallow cream and butter in the bowl of a mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Mix until well combined and fluffy.

Add the vanilla and salt. Mix until combined.

Add the powdered sugar on low, and mix until smooth and creamy.

 

Ingredients and Instructions for Assembling the S'more Cupcakes

 

Ingredients

Baked and cooled chocolate cupcakes with a graham cracker crust

Prepared semisweet chocolate ganache

Prepared fluffy marshmallow frosting in a piping bag fitted with a large star tip

Graham cracker crumbs

12 Graham crackers cut into small rectangles

12 Hershey's milk chocolate pieces

 

Instructions

Using a sharp paring knife, cut a 1/2 inch hole in the center of each cupcake. Place a heaping teaspoon of the chocolate ganache in the center.

Heat the remaining ganache until it's back to a liquid consistency. Dip the edges of the cupcake in the melted ganache. Roll the wet edges in graham cracker crumbs.

Pipe the marshmallow frosting on top. Finally, place a small graham cracker and Hershey's milk chocolate piece on top of each cupcake.

Yields 12 cupcakes.

 

This post is linked to these parties.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

March 28, 2014

Salted Dark Chocolate Cookies: World Peace Cookies

Salted Dark Chocolate Cookies|The Crafting Foodie

I've been craving chocolate. I guess I should say I've been craving chocolate, chocolate. Like something really chocolaty. Something dark, rich, and decadent. And these salted dark chocolate cookies with dark chocolate chunks are the perfect solution.

While these cookies may not look like much, each one is intensely chocolate with a subtle, but still noticeable, salty finish.

Salted Chocolate Cookies | The Crafting Foodie

The best part is that these salted dark chocolate cookies are so easy to make. You can whip up a batch with ingredients you probably already have in your pantry.  Then store the unbaked batter in the freezer, and slice and bake them whenever you're craving something witha big chocolaty punch.

The recipe for these cookies is from Dorie Greenspan's James Beard Foundation award winning cookbook, Baking: From My Home to Yours. She named them World Peace Cookies because her neighbor was convinced that if everyone had a batch of these, it would spread happiness and peace around the globe. Unfortunately, as world peace continues to elude us, at least we have a rich, dark, sweet and salty cookie to keep our tummies happy and our chocolate cravings satisfied.

Dark Chocolate Cookies | The Crafting Foodie

 

Salted Dark Chocolate Cookies: World Peace Cookies

This recipe is slightly adapted from Dorie Greenspan's World Peace Cookies which can be found in her book Baking: From My Home to Yours.

Ingredients

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (I used Dutch processed cocoa and felt it created a darker, richer chocolate flavor)

1/2 tsp baking soda

11 tbs unsalted butter at room temperature

2/3 cup packed light brown sugar

1/4 cup granulated sugar

1/2 tsp. fleur de sel (you can substitute this with 1/4 tsp fine sea salt)

1 tsp. pure vanilla extract

8 oz. bittersweet chocolate, chopped

 

Instructions

In a medium bowl, sift the all-purpose flour, cocoa, and baking soda. Set aside.

In the bowl of a mixer, beat the butter with a paddle attachment until it is light and creamy. Add both of the sugars, salt, and vanilla and beat for about 2 more minutes.

Turn the mixer off, and add the dry ingredients all at once. When turning the mixer back on, mix on the lowest speed to prevent the dry ingredient from flying out of the bowl. You can even drape a kitchen towel loosely over the mixing bowl to prevent the dry ingredients from spilling out of the bowl as you mix the dry ingredients into the batter. Mix until the ingredients are just combined. The less you mix this batter, the better.

Add the chocolate pieces, and mix only to combine. The dough may be crumbly, which is completely fine.

Turn the dough out onto a work surface. Gather it into one large ball, and divide it in half. Roll each half into a log that is about 1 1/2 inch in diameter. Wrap the logs in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 3 hours or up to 3 days. The dough can also be frozen for up to 2 moths. (If you freeze the cookie dough, slice it when still frozen. Add an additional 1 minute to the bake time to compensate for the cold dough).

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.

Using a sharp, thin knife, slice the dough into rounds that are about 1/2 an inch thick. The dough may crumble as you slice it. If that happens, simply mold the slice back together with your fingertips.

Arrange the sliced dough on a metal backing tray lined with a silicone mat or a piece of parchment paper. Place the cookies about 1 inch apart.

Bake the cookies one sheet at a time. Bake for 12 minutes. The cookies will still look raw when finished baking, but remove them from the oven immediately. Transfer the cookies to a cooling rack. (The baking time of these cookies is extremely important. If they are over baked, their texture will be ruined, and the cookie with be sandy and crumbly. When baked the correct amount of time, the cookies will be rich and dense.) The cookies can be served when warm or at room temperature.

Yields about 3 dozen cookies.

 

This post is linked to these parties.

 

 

 

 

March 14, 2014

Cherry and Dark Chocolate Hand Pies for Pi Day

Cherry Dark Chocolate Hand Pies | The Crafting Foodie

This year we're celebrating Pi Day with some cherry and dark chocolate hand pies. What's Pi Day? Well, it's always on March 14 (3/14), in celebration of the number pi, whose first three digits are 3.14.Since pi represents the ratio of a circle's circumference to its diameter, my hand pies had to be circles.

And just to reinforce that these cherry and dark chocolate hand pies are for Pi Day, the venting holes for the hand pies are the Greek letter pi.

Cherry and Dark Chocolate Hand Pies | The Crafting Foodie

As I've mentioned in my post for these apple-cranberry hand pies, I'm love hand pies. They're easy to eat (no plate or fork necessary). They are perfect for sharing (no giving someone a half-eaten pie). And most importantly, they have the perfect filling to crust ratio (no huge chunks of filling with a flimsy bottom crust).

Cherry Dark Chocolate Hand Pies Recipe | The Crafting Foodie

I really love the cherry and dark chocolate combination in the recipe. It's not too sweet, and the chocolate adds body to the tart cherry filling. It's the perfect way to celebrate Pi Day or any day!

  Cherry Chocolate Hand Pies | The Crafting Foodie

Cherry and Dark Chocolate Hand Pies

Adapted from Cooks Illustrated

 

Ingredients for the Pastry Crust

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 tsp salt

2 tbs sugar

16 tbs cold unsalted butter, cut into cubes

1/2 cup to 1/2 cup plus 3 tbs ice cold water

1 egg white, lightly beaten (for the glaze)

1 tbs sugar (for topping the glazed pies)

 

Ingredients for the Cherry and Dark Chocolate Filling

3 cups pitted cherries (I used good quality frozen, pitted cherries which I measured frozen then allowed to defrost before proceeding with the recipe)

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1/2 tsp lemon zest

1 tsp lemon juice (I used half of a medium lemon in order to yield the zest and juice)

A pinch of allspice (which means less than 1/8 tsp)

A scant 1/8 tsp of cinnamon

1/8 tsp almond extract

2 tbs quick-cooking tapioca

3 1/2 ounces of dark chocolate (chocolate with 70% cocoa content) chopped

 

Instructions for the Pastry

 

Mix the flour, sugar, and salt in a medium sized bowl.

 

Cut the cold butter into the flour until the mixture resembles coarse cornmeal with large, uneven clumps of butter scattered throughout the mixture. Start by adding 1/4 of a cup of ice water. Mix with a spatula. Add enough water for the dough to just come together.

 

Split the dough into two equal pieces and flatten each piece into two disks. Wrap each disk of dough with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 45 minutes or up to 2 days.

 

Instructions for the Cherry Dark Chocolate Filling

Mix the cherries, sugar, allspice, cinnamon, tapioca, lemon juice and zest, and almond extract in a medium bowl.

Allow the ingredients to sit for 15 minutes to allow the cherries to macerate. While waiting for the cherries, proceed with assembling the hand pies.

 

Instructions for Assembling the Hand Pies

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Lightly beat the egg white, and place it in a bowl with a pastry brush.

Taking one disk of dough out of the refrigerator, roll it out on a lightly floured surface until it's about 1/8 inch thick. (I like my pastry to be nice and thin.)

Using a round cutter that's about 3 1/2 inches in diameter, cut out circles. Re-roll the scraps only one additional time and stamp out circles. I only roll out the dough two times because any additional rolling will yield a tough crust.

Place the cut circles of dough on a baking sheet placing parchment paper between each layer of cut pastry. Refrigerate the circles.

While the first set of pastry circles is being refrigerated, cut out additional circles from the second disk of dough. Again, refrigerate those pieces on a metal baking sheet.

Retrieve the first set of pastry circles from the refrigerator. Take half of those circles and cut out a pi symbol. These cutouts will act as a vent to allow steam to escape from the pies. You can cut any shape you would like or simply make a few slits in the dough. When cutting out the pi shape (or any shape) in the pastry, make sure that the pastry is very cold and firm. Using a sharp knife will also be very helpful.

Take the circles without cutouts (they will be the bottom of each hand pie). Place a teaspoon of chopped chocolate at the base. Then place about four cherries (which a chopped in half with my spoon as I placed them on the dough) on top of the chocolate. Spoon over a bit of cherry juice. Place the pastry top of the hand pie (the piece of pastry with the hole) on top of the filling. Use a fork to seal the edges.

Brush the top of the hand pie with egg white. Sprinkle some granulated sugar on top.

Proceed to fill and crimp all of the pastry pieces.

Bake in the middle of the oven for 25 minutes, or until gold brown.

Yields about 18 hand pies.

 

This post is linked to these parties.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

February 18, 2014

Grasshopper Cupcakes - Rich, Minty, Green, Chocolate Cupcakes Perfect for St. Patrick's Day

Grasshopper Cupcakes for St.Patricks Day  The Crafting Foodie

These Grasshopper Cupcakes, rich chocolate cupcakes with a chocolate mint cookie crust, filled with a minty ganache, and topped with a light, fluffy mint frosting, are my attempt at keeping my sanity. It's snowing here again, the second snowstorm in less than five days. Ugh. That's really all I can say. So, on this dreary, cold day, I'm focusing on the end of winter, and seriously looking forward to St. Patrick's Day on March 17th. That's just three, yes THREE, days away from the official first day of spring.

Mint Chocolate Grasshopper Cupcakes for St. Patrick's Day | The Crafting Foodie

I based these cupcakes off of the retro American dessert, grasshopper pie. It's a pie with a chocolate crust and a creamy, mint filling. Oh, and the filling has to be tinted green. It's green filling is quintessential to any grasshopper pie.

While I love pie, it's a tough dessert to share with anyone others unless they're actually sitting down with you. That's why I turned my version into cupcakes because you can give one or all of the cupcakes to a deserving friend or loved one.

That's my trick actually. I give away almost every single item I bake. The recipients are happy, and my pants still fit. It's a good deal for everyone.

Mint Chocolate Grasshopper Cupcakes | The Crafting Foodie

 

While Grasshopper Cupcakes are delicious any time, the green icing makes them perfect for St. Patrick's Day.

  Grasshopper Cupcakes | The Crafting Foodie

Grasshopper Cupcakes

 

Ingredients for the Cupcakes

Adapted from Martha Stewart's One Bowl Chocolate Cupcakes

3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 1/2 cups granulated sugar

1 1/2 tsp baking soda

3/4 tsp baking powder

3/4 tsp salt

2 large eggs

3/4 cup warm water

3/4 cup milk

3/4 tbs white vinegar

3 tbs vegetable oil

2 teaspoons of vanilla extract

24 chocolate mint cookies divided, Keebler brand, Oreo Mint Cookies, or Girls Scout Thin Mints

1/2 cup of mini chocolate chips (for decorating the cupcakes)

 

Instructions:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a standard size cupcake tin with paper liners.

Mix the milk and vinegar in a small bowl. Let it stand (the milk will separate).

Sift the cocoa, all-purpose flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt into a large bowl. Add the eggs, warm water, milk and vinegar mixture, oil, and vanilla extract. Mix until smooth.

Place one mint-chocolate cookie on the bottom of each cupcake liner. Fill cupcake tins 2/3 full of the batter.

Bake for 20 minutes, rotating the pans half way through the baking time.

 

Ingredients for the Peppermint Ganache

12 ounces of bittersweet chocolate, chopped into small pieces

1 cup heavy cream

1 tsp peppermint extract

 

Instructions for Peppermint Ganache

Place the chopped chocolate in a medium bowl. Heat the cream until just simmering. Pour the warm cream over the chopped chocolate. Allow the mixture to sit for about a minute. Add the peppermint flavor.  Then mix until a smooth, glossy mixture forms.

Set the warm ganache aside. Allow to cool before using it in cupcakes.

 

Ingredients for the Peppermint Frosting

1 1/2 cups of unsalted butter at room temperature

3 cups of powdered sugar

a pinch of salt

1 to 2 tbs heavy cream

1 tsp vanilla extract

1/2 tsp peppermint extract

green food color

 

Instructions for the Peppermint Frosting

In a small measuring cup, add the vanilla, peppermint, and cream. Add salt. Mix until salt is dissolved.

Beat the sugar and butter until smooth. Add the liquid ingredients, and beat until light and fluffy.

 

Instructions for Assembling the Cupcakes

Once cupcakes have cooled completely, core out a 1 1/2 inch diameter circle in each cupcake, saving the top of the cored cupcake piece. Fill the hole with a heaping teaspoon of cooled chocolate ganache. Replace the top of the hole with the reserved cupcake piece.

Spread a thin layer of the ganache over the edges of the cupcake. Immediately press mini-chocolate chips into the wet ganache.

Pipe the frosting on each cupcake. Drizzle left over ganache over cupcakes. Top with a chocolate mint cookie.

Yields 12 cupcakes

 

This post is linked to these parties.

 

 

February 10, 2014

Red Velvet Coffee Cakes with Chocolate Ganache Topped with Cream Cheese Frosting

Red Velvet Coffee Cakes Filled with Chocolate Ganache | The Crafting Foodie

I love Valentine's Day. I love all of the chocolaty, heart-shaped, pink, red, sparkly treats that come along with the holiday. This year, the Valentine spirit inspired these red velvet coffee cakes with chocolate ganache topped with cream cheese frosting.

My husband loves red velvet, and I love coffee cake. So I thought, what a perfect marriage, a dessert that we'd both love.

Red Velvet Coffee Cake with Chocolate Ganache | The Crafting Foodie

I was hesitant to make a yeasted pastry because I was worried about the dough rising since it's been so gosh darn cold around here. Even with the heat on in the house, I had my doubts about the yeast maintaining a warm enough temperature to rise properly. That was until I made a life-changing discovery: I have a "proof" setting on my oven. I have no idea how that minor detail slipped my attention over the past two years that we've been living in our current home. I figure, better late than never, and I popped my beautiful red velvet dough into the oven to rise.

Red Velvet Coffee Cakes with Chocolate Ganache | The Crafting Foodie

These red velvet coffee cakes with chocolate ganache topped with cream cheese frosting turned out perfectly. The soft layers of red velvet dough have the perfect hint of chocolate, while the filling provides a rich, decadent burst of chocolate. These are a new Valentine's Day breakfast tradition in our home. I hope it will be for you and your family as well!

  Red Velvet Coffee Cake Filled with Chocolate Ganache | The Crafting Foodie

 Red Velvet Coffee Cakes with Chocolate Ganache Topped with Cream Cheese Frosting

Ingredients for the Red Velvet Coffee Cakes

1/4 ounce active dry yeast (one envelope)

1/4 cup warm water 110 to 115 degrees F

1 cup warm milk 110 to 115 degrees F

3/4 cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled (divided)

2 large eggs, lightly beaten

1/4 cup granulated sugar

1 tsp salt

3 1/2 to 4 cups all-purpose, unbleached flour

2 tbs cocoa

2 tsp red food color (I used AmeriColor food gel, 1 1/2 tsp Tulip Red and 1/2 tsp Burgundy)

 

Ingredients for the Ganache Filling

6 ounces of dark chocolate, chopped (I used chocolate with 70% cocoa)

1/2 cup heavy cream

 

Ingredients for the Cream Cheese Frosting

8 ounces of cream cheese at room temperature

1/2 cup unsalted butter at room temperature

1 tsp vanilla

3 cups powdered sugar

 

Instructions for the Ganache

Warm the cream until simmering. Pour over the chopped chocolate. Allow the mixture to stand for a minute or two. Then mix until the chocolate is melted, and a shiny, smooth mixture forms. Allow the ganache to sit at room temperature until ready to use.

 

Instructions for the Cake Dough

In a large bowl, dissolve the yeast in the water. Add the milk, 1/2 cup butter, eggs, sugar, salt, and 2 cups of the flour. Add enough flour for a soft dough to form.

Turn the dough onto a floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, about 6 to 8 minutes. Place in a greased bowl and turn once to grease the top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.

Pre-heat the oven for 350 degrees F.

Punch the dough down. Divide the dough into 8 pieces. On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough out into an 8-inch by 10-inch rectangle. Spread the chocolate ganache in a thin layer over the dough, leaving a 1/4 inch border.

Roll the dough up, jelly-role style, starting with the long side. Place the role, seem side down, and fold the role in half. Using a pair of kitchen shears, cut the dough down the middle. Then shape into a heart.

RedVelvetCoffeeCakeThe Crafting Foodie

Repeat the process until all 8 pieces of dough are formed in to hearts. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes.

 

Instructions for the Frosting

Cream the butter and cream cheese in the bowl of a mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Add the vanilla and powdered sugar and mix until just combined. Add the milk and mix until it is light and fluffy.

Once the cakes are cooled completely, ice the cakes.

Yields 8 Cakes

 

This post is linked to these link-parties.

 

 

January 14, 2014

Candy Cane Cupcakes - Chocolate Peppermint Cupcakes with a Candy Cane Cookie Crusts

Candy Cane Cupcakes with Candycane Cookie Crust | The Crafting Foodie

Now that the holiday season is officially over, it's time to clean out my holiday confection stash, and my first creation is a candy cane cupcake: a chocolate peppermint cupcake with a candy cane cookie crust filled with Ghirardelli Peppermint Bark. 

Candy Cane Cupcakes with Candycane Cookie Crusts | The Crafting Foodie

It's been quite a while since I last posted anything, and that would have to be credited with our trip to Chicago over the holidays. Yes. We went to Chicago (aka the Polar Vortex). Let's just say our 2-week visit was filled with sub-zero temperatures, a snowstorm, and everyone getting various viruses (including the-ever-festive pink eye). We've been home in New England for the past week, and only now do I feel like we're getting back to normal. Talk about needing a vacation after a vacation.

Candy Cane Cucpakes with A Candycane Cookie Crust | The Crafting Foodie

On to more pleasant news, the chocolate cupcake recipe I used for these candy cane cupcakes is my new favorite chocolate cupcake recipe. It's rich, chocolaty and moist. Plus, every single ingredient in these cupcakes is probably something you already have in your pantry or fridge.

I love chocolate and peppermint together, so it's not surprising that I made a similar cupcake last year. You can check out last year's version here.

This year's version features these ever-loved holiday confections: 

Cany Cane Cupcakes with Candycane Cookie Crusts | The Crafting Foodie

Since I wanted the cupcakes to not only taste like candy canes, but to look like them as well, I used a food-only paintbrush, and painted stripes of red food color (I used the gel food color) on the inside of my pastry bag. Then I filled the pasty bag with my vanilla frosting, and when I piped, voila, candy-cane stripes!

  Candy Cane  Cupcakes with a Candycane Cookie Crust | The Crafting Foodie


Hope you all had a wonderful holiday season with your loved ones. Now on to the Winter Olympics, the Super Bowl, and Valentine's Day!

 

Candy Cane Cupcakes

Cupcake Recipe Adapted from Julie Hasson's 125 Best Cupcake Recipes

Ingredients for the Chocolate Cupcakes

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 cup Dutch-process cocoa powder

3/4 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp salt

1 cup granulated sugar

1/3 cup vegetable oil

1 egg

1 tsp vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste

1 tsp peppermint extract

3/4 cup milk

1 tbs vinegar (distilled white vinegar or cider vinegar)

1 bar of Ghirardelli Peppermint Bark with Dark Chocolate

Crushed candy canes

Melted Chocolate

 

Ingredients for the Candy Cane Cookie Crust

10 Candy Cane Joe-Joe's cookies

2 tbs unsalted butter, melted

 

Ingredients for the Vanilla Frosting

1 1/2 cups unsalted butter at room temperature

3 cups powdered sugar

2 tsp vanilla extract

3 tbs cream or whole milk

1/8 tsp salt

Red gel food color

 

Instructions for the Cupcakes

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a standard, 12 cupcake tin with paper liners.

Crush the cookies into fine crumbs (either in the food processor or use a zip-top bag and a rolling pin to crush the cookies). Mix the crumbs with the melted butter. Place a generous tablespoon in the bottom of each cupcake liner, patting the mixture down to form a crust. Place the cupcake tin in the fridge while mixing the batter to allow the crust to harden before baking.

Mix the milk and vinegar in a small bowl. Allow the mix to separate.

In a small bowl, sift the cocoa powder, flour, baking soda, and salt.

Place the oil in a large bowl. Slowly add the sugar and mix until the sugar is dissolved. Add the egg and extracts. Whisk until the mixture is smooth.

Add the dry ingredients in thirds, alternating with the milk mixture. Mix until smooth.

Fill each cupcake tin 2/3 full. 

Submerge a piece (the size is your choice) of the peppermint bark in the middle of each cupcake.

Bake for 22 to 27 minutes or when the tops of the cupcakes spring back with lightly touched.

 

Instructions for the Vanilla Frosting

Beat the butter and powdered sugar until light and fluffy.

Mix the vanilla, cream and salt in a small bowl until the salt dissolves.

Add the vanilla mixture and beat until fluffy.

 

To Assemble the Cupcakes

Once the cupcakes are cool, spread the melted chocolate on the rim of the cupcakes. Roll the chocolate in the candy cane pieces.

Then place your desired tip in a piping bag.

Using a food-only paintbrush, dip the paintbrush in a bit of red-gel food color. Starting at the narrow end of the piping bag, drag the brush in a straight line until the top of the bag.

Carefully folding the bag over to make a cuff, carefully fill the bag with the frosting. Pipe frosting as usual.

 Yields one dozen standard-sized cupcakes

 

This post is linked to these parties.

Tip Junkie Handmade Projects

 

 

December 11, 2013

Turtle Thumbprint Cookies - Chocolate and Pecan Cookies Filled with Homemade Salted Caramel

Today I'm thrilled to post my recipe for turtle thumbprint cookies made with homemade salted caramel for The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap. These thumbprint cookies go above and beyond the usual. They're rich, chocolate cookies rolled in roasted pecans, filled with homemade salted caramel, and drizzled with dark chocolate.

Salated Caramel Turtle Thumbprint Cookies | The Crafting Foodie

This salty-sweet combo of chocolate, salted caramel, and crunchy roasted nuts was inspired by my turtle cupcakes. I wanted to send my fellow-cookie swappers something delicious, substantial, and satisfying. I think these cookies fit the bill, and I hope the recipients though so too!

Turtle Thumbprint Cookies with Homemade Caramel | The Crafting Foodie

I was so pleased to be part of The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap, and I can't believe that the swap raised $13,778.40 for Cookies for Kids' Cancer, a national, non-profit organization dedicated to helping fight pediatric cancer. What an amazing job done by the organizers, Love & Olive Oil and The Little Kitchen. Plus, OXO, one of the corporate sponsors, sent every participant an amazing set of silicone spatulas. I'm so excited to use them!

Thumbprint Cookies with Caramel | The Crafting Foodie

Here are my packages before I sent them off to my cookie swap recipients. I knew what I wanted the packages to look like, so rather than obsessively search for what I wanted, I though I'd just make the containers and stickers myself. They turned out pretty darn close to what I wanted. I hope the cookie recipients enjoyed receiving these as much as I enjoyed making and sending the package along to them!

Chocolate Turtle Thumbrint Cookies | The Crafting Foodie

The cookie swap is so organized that they accommodate for dietary restrictions, and since I don't eat bovine derived products, I was placed in the vegetarian group. To be extra careful and considerate, all participants in the swap with dietary restrictions were asked to include a list of ingredients in each box of cookies. If any of my cookie swap recipients are reading this post, they'll notice that some of my ingredients listed in the recipe below differ from the ones I sent them. And that's right! Given my obsessive nature to get a recipe exactly the way I want it, I did indeed tinker with it after sending the cookies off in the mail. The cookies photographed in this post reflect the cookies I made with the recipe below.

Turtle Thumbprint Cookies with Salted Caramel | The Crafting Foodie

If you're a blogger, and you're interested in signing up for next year's swap, you can do so here. I'm already looking forward to next year's swap!

Turtle Thumbprint Cookies with Salted Caramel and Pecans | The Crafting Foodie

 

Turtle Thumbprint Cookies filled with Homemade Salted Caramel

Adapted from Gourmet Magazine

Ingredients for the Cookies

1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, softened

2/3 cup granulated sugar

1 large egg yolk

2 tbs whole milk

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 cup all-purpose flour

1/3 cup Dutch-process cocoa

1/4 tsp salt

1 large egg white lightly beaten

1/2 cup roasted and chopped pecans

1/4 cup chopped dark chocolate

 

Ingredients for the Homemade Salted Caramel

Adapted from Doughmesstic.com

7 tbs unsalted butter, cubed

1/4 plus 1/8 cup brown sugar

1/4 cup granulated sugar

1/4 plus 1/8 cup light corn syrup

1 tsp sea salt

1/8 cup heavy cream

1 tsp vanilla extract

 

Directions for the Cookies

Roast the pecans by preheating the oven to 350 degrees F. Place the nuts on a baking sheet and bake for 10 to 15 minutes until they are fragrant. Remove the nuts from the oven, and allow them to cool to room temperature.

For the cookies, sift the all purpose flour, cocoa, and salt into a medium bowl. Set aside.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugars. Once the butter and sugar is creamed until light and fluffy, add the egg yolk, vanilla, and milk. Mix until just combined.

Add the dry ingredients with the mixer on low. Mix until just combined.

Form the dough into a disk, and wrap in plastic wrap. Chill in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes and up to 2 days.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

While the dough is chilling, finely chop the pecans. In a small bowl, lightly beat the egg white.

Once the dough is chilled, roll scant tablespoons of the dough into balls. Dip the balls into the egg white. Then roll in the chopped nuts. Place the balls on a parchment-lined cookie sheet. Place them about 1 1/2 inches apart. Once all the balls are rolled and placed on the cookie sheet, use the back of a wooden spoon to make a round indentation in the middle of each cookie. (This will be where the cookies will be filled with the homemade salted caramel).

Bake the cookies for about 10 to 12 minutes. They will still be a bit soft when they are done baking. Do not over bake the cookies!

Once the cookies are removed from the oven, use the back of a wooden spoon to immediately press the centers of the cookies again. Transfer the cookies to a wire rack and allow to cool completely.

 

Directions for the Salted Caramel Filling

Place all the ingredients except for the extract into a heavy bottomed saucepan. Place on medium heat, and allow the butter to melt and sugar to dissolve. Once the mixture starts to boil, using a candy thermometer, boil until it reaches the softball stage (about 240 degrees F).

Once the mixture reaches 240 degrees F, remove the pot from the heat. Add the vanilla extract and mix. Allow the mixture to cool for a few minutes.

 

Directions for Assembling the Cookies

Using a teaspoon, fill each of the cooled cookie with the salted caramel. Allow the caramel to firm up before proceeding.

Once the caramel is nice and firm (it will not completely harden), melt the chopped chocolate. Drizzle over the cooled cookies. Allow the chocolate to cool before serving.

Depending on the size of each cookie, this recipe yields about 3 dozen cookies

 

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