New Pinterest Recipe of the Week: 3 Ingredient Nutella Cookies

Hubs had a crew feed the other day (i.e. office potluck) and when it came to his contribution, apparently it was requested that it be something I baked. I have to admit, that felt pretty good. It’s nice to know that one’s endeavors are appreciated. Anyway, aside from sending him to work with another loaf of Strawberry Banana Bread (by request), I decided to make these cookies as a little something extra. I mean THREE ingredients, how much simpler can you get? I found this recipe at Kirbie’s Cravings and it really is one of the simplest cookie recipes I have ever come across. I would almost (but not quite) go so far as to call this idiot-proof baking.

So anyway, just to make sure you’re ready to go: Do you have flour? Do you have an egg? Do you have Nutella? Great, let’s get started!

Ingredients

  • 1 cup flour (I used all-purpose)
  • 1 cup Nutella
  • 1 egg

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Mix your ingredients together until combined. The dough will still look a bit crumbly, but most of it should stick together. Roll the dough into approx. 1 inch balls with your hands and then flatten with your palms. Try to smooth the edges a bit, if you can.

Place on a cookie sheet and bake for 7-8 minutes. Makes about 16 cookies.

3 Ingredient Nutella Cookies

Tweaks and Overall Review

I didn’t make any particular tweaks to this recipe (with only three ingredients there really isn’t much to tweak), however, I do have some tips on execution. I mixed the flour and Nutella as much as possible BEFORE adding the egg. This seemed to make everything combine a little more easily. Also, give the cookies a few minutes to cool on the cookie sheet before moving them to a rack, since they have a rather gooey, fudgy, consistency when first out of the oven.

This makes for a very rich cookie. I definitely recommend combining these with a glass of milk when you eat them, otherwise after a few bites you feel like you’ve just eaten a few spoons of raw Nutella. Not that that’s a bad thing, but it does tend to leave a rather heavy feeling in one’s mouth. Also, while they are perfectly acceptable up to a few days after baking, they are definitely best fresh from the oven. Hubs and the girls were fans, though, and if you need something fast and easy, this is a great recipe. I turned out two batches in about 30 mins.

 

 

 

Advertisements

New Pinterest Recipe of the Week: Peach Oatmeal Muffins

Something kind of funny happened when I decided to make these. I knew I had all the ingredients on hand, which was delightfully convenient since waddling my pregnant butt around the commissary is getting more tiresome by the day. Funny thing was though, I had exactly the amount I needed for two of my ingredients to make this batch of muffins, no more, no less. I guess it was meant to be.

As a treat to myself, I splurged on some beautiful, organic peaches this past week. When I’m pregnant, I love a good peach, or anything peachy, really. It’s one craving that has been consistent in all my pregnancies (and this is #3). So having such lovely peaches on hand (and they really were), I knew that this week’s New Pinterest Recipe had to be something with peaches in it. I found this recipe over at Damn Delicious and it seemed perfect for my needs: peachy, wouldn’t take too long (because standing in a kitchen when almost 9 months pregnant is tiresome as well), and not completely unhealthy (The peach and the oats totally balance everything else out, right? Right!). So here we go: Peach Oatmeal Muffins.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 tsps. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 1 cup chopped peaches (I ended up using closer to 1 1/2-2 cups since one chopped peach didn’t give me quite enough, so I ended up using two, which since they were rather large, was more than enough. But like I said, this pregnant lady loves peaches so having extra was not an issue for me.)
  • Cinnamon-sugar for sprinkling on top

Preheat the oven to 400°F and line a standard 12 cup muffin tin with paper liners.

In a large bowl, combine your flour, oats, sugar, baking powder, and salt (your dry ingredients).

In a smaller bowl, or a large measuring cup, whisk your egg, sour cream, and butter together (the wet ingredients).

Pour the wet ingredients over the dry, and combine until just moist.

Add peaches and gently stir to combine.

Distribute batter evenly in your lined muffin cups and top with a sprinkling of cinnamon-sugar.

Bake for about 16-18 mins. Makes about 10-12 muffins.

Peach Oatmeal Muffins

Tweaks and Overall Review

I ended up with 12 muffins in my finished batch. Considering that I had probably almost doubled the amount of peach in mine, a standard batch would probably turn out 9 or 10. Also, because I filled my muffin tins almost to the brim, my baking time was a little longer. I took them out at 20 mins., since at 18 they were still just a little too underdone and I wanted slightly more color on the tops. Finally, I will take this chance to emphasize: Use liners for this one! It will make your life easier. Even if you usually don’t, use liners this time. Oh, and be sure and use fresh peaches. I know that makes this more of a seasonal recipe, but just don’t bother with frozen on this one. The flavor just won’t be the same.

These turned out so well. I was really pleased. You can definitely taste the oats, but there is plenty of peach to go with it. One of my taste testers described them as being like peaches and cream oatmeal in muffin form. These are definitely something to eat same day as baking, since hopefully you are using nice, juicy peaches, so I wouldn’t recommend letting the muffins sit too long. I don’t imagine that being a problem though. These are definitely getting added to the regular baking rotation. Hopefully I’ll get another good batch of peaches and can make them again soon, because these were just that good.

New Pinterest Recipe of the Week: Strawberry Banana Bread

I know, I know. It seems all I do is bake and that I have some terrible obsession with banana breads. I promise I can do more than bake, and that while I do love a good banana bread, there are other foods that I enjoy preparing (and eating) just as much. That being said, when you have perfectly overripe bananas, you use them, and when you have additional summer produce begging to be used (in this case strawberries), well, you make the Strawberry Banana Bread. This recipe comes from Flying on Jess Fuel (written by a fellow military spouse, hooah!). Enjoy!

Ingredients

  • 4 very ripe bananas (I only had 3, but they were larger, so it evened out)
  • 1/3 cup melted butter (As per usual, mine is unsalted)
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour (I don’t usually have whole wheat flour so I just used all-purpose in place of the whole wheat)
  • 1 cup fresh strawberries, diced

Preheat oven to 350°F and grease an 8×4 loaf pan.

In a large bowl, mash the bananas, then mix in the melted butter. Add vanilla, sugar, and egg. Sprinkle salt and baking soda over the banana mixture and blend in. Add flour and mix until just combined. Gently fold in strawberries.

Pour or spoon batter into loaf pan, bake for approx. 1 hour. When a tester comes out clean, remove from oven and cool on rack. Remove from loaf pan after about 10 min. and allow to finish cooling on the rack.

Strawberry Banana Bread

Tweaks and Overall Review

Other than what is noted above, the only other tweak I made was to grease and flour my loaf pan. I just find it easier to get my pans to release when I do this. I needed slightly more than an hour of bake time, but no more than 1 hour 10 min. Also, I would advise testing in two locations when checking for doneness. The strawberries keep the pockets around them very moist so it may seem like the bread isn’t done if your stick hits one of them, which may cause you to give the bread additional oven time it doesn’t need. Just test in two locations (relatively close together and still in the center) and hopefully you avoid this possible issue.

How did it turn out? Wonderful. The strawberries were a great addition, but did not overpower the banana flavor. In fact, they married together quite well. The bread itself was moist, but still had a lighter texture than I was expecting. I let Hubs take the remainder of the loaf to work with him and it was a big hit. Apparently it was gone in about 5 minutes and there was moaning (the good kind). I’d say that’s a positive review. I also love this recipe for two other reasons. First, it uses melted butter. No waiting for butter to soften at room temperature. It’s not a big deal, but to me it just makes things seem that much easier. Second, you can mix everything in one bowl and cut down on clean-up. Anything that reduces the amount of dishes I have to wash wins in my book.

To sum up, you must try this! I thought it was amazing, my husband’s crew thought it was amazing, and I hope you’ll think it’s amazing.

New Pinterest Recipe of the Week: Fresh Strawberry Muffins

A friend of ours, Andie, had a longish layover on her way to visit some family back home, so instead of having her languish in the airport for hours, the girls and I went and picked her up so she could spend the time with us. We used to be stationed together, and the whole family has missed her now that we are no longer in the same zip code (or time zone for that matter). Frankly, Andie is the kind of friend every mom should have. She’s an awesome girlfriend to hang out with, but also adores the girls and was almost always able and willing to babysit or take Big Bit out for a while. So yeah, to sum up, Andie is awesome.

What does this have to do with Fresh Strawberry Muffins? Well back when we were in the same zip code, Andie was my partner in crime when it came to baking, so when she was here we did exactly what we used to: Stuck in a Disney movie for white noise and kid entertainment (in this case a double feature of Cinderella and The Little Mermaid) and got to baking. We decided to make these muffins that I found from Real Mom Kitchen since they looked delicious but didn’t make too large a batch or take too long to bake (we did have to get Andie back to the airport in time for her next flight).

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup of butter, softened (I used unsalted)
  • 3/4 cup of sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 2 cups of flour (I used all-purpose)
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 1/2 cups of fresh strawberries, chopped (I had closer to 2 cups, but I wanted to finish off the box I had bought. Anyway, who doesn’t mind some extra strawberries?)
  • 3 tsp. sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon

Heat oven to 400°F.

Cream together the butter and sugar. Add the egg and mix well.

In a small bowl, sift together your flour, baking powder, and salt. Add flour mixture to wet ingredients, alternating with the milk. Add vanilla. Gently fold in strawberries, trying to get an even distribution in the batter.

Spoon batter into muffin pan(s). (I recommend lining them with wrappers for easier clean up.)

Sprinkle cinnamon and sugar over the tops of the muffins.

Bake 20-25 mins.

Makes approx. 12 muffins. Best eaten fresh as they tend to get gooey after a day due to the moisture from the strawberries.

Fresh Strawberry Muffins

Tweaks and Overall Review

These turned out beautifully! Our total bake time was 23 mins., so right in line with the recipe called for. We ended up getting 18 muffins from our batch, but that was probably due to adding the extra half cup of strawberries, which is the only real tweak I made to this recipe. The cinnamon-sugar made for a wonderful crunchy top for the muffins while the insides were moist and delicious. They weren’t overly sweet, but had a nice strawberry flavor and also weren’t as dense as I was originally expecting them to be. Now I can’t personally vouch for the whole “they get gooey after a day,” since none of ours lasted that long (They were that good!), but given how juicy our strawberries were, I think this advice is valid.

Overall a very good recipe, especially if you are hosting an event or have enough people in the house to know that these will get eaten on baking day.

New Pinterest Recipe of the Week: Raspberry Sour Cream Muffins

When I am pregnant there is one thing I do a lot of, or at least more than usual. I bake. Nesting isn’t necessarily cleaning or organizing for me. More likely it’s the absolute need to make brownies at midnight (pregnancy #1), or some similar harebrained baking scheme. Anyway, the other day I went on what I consider my first pregnancy-related baking binge. The girls were behaving, Hubs was home from work to help keep an eye on them, and so I went for it. I made banana bread (my tried and true recipe, which I’ll post later this week) and these muffins. The recipe comes from Slice of Southern and was really easy to make.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups of all-purpose flour
  • 1 Tbsp. baking powder
  • 1/8 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 6 Tbsp. canola oil
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 cup raspberries (You can use frozen, but I used fresh because, if you can find nice ones in season, why settle for anything less?)

Preheat the oven to 400°F and either grease a muffin pan or use paper liners.

In a large bowl add flour, baking powder, and salt, stirring to mix. In another smaller bowl, lightly beat your two eggs and then add the sugar, canola oil, sour cream, and vanilla. Stir until just blended. Pour your wet ingredients into your dry ingredients and stir until just moistened, taking care not to over mix. Gently fold in your raspberries, doing your best not to mash them. (If you have used fresh, this may be harder if you have some really ripe ones mixed in. Don’t worry if a couple don’t survive folding intact, it just makes some pretty swirls of color on your finished muffins.)

Spoon your batter (it will be rather thick) into your prepared muffin pan. (I portioned out about 1/4-1/3 cup of batter per muffin and that made pretty good sized ones.) Bake for 20 mins. or until golden brown. Allow to cool 5 minutes in the pan and then transfer to a wire rack.

Makes approx. 12 muffins.

IMG_1415

Tweaks and Overall Review:

The main thing I changed, more out of caution than anything else, was I lowered the oven temperature to 375°F. My oven tends to run slightly hot and I was using dark bakeware, so I just wanted to be sure these didn’t get burned. Changing the oven temperature added another 5 mins. at 375° and then an additional 5 mins. at 400° in order to get a nice golden color on the tops of the muffins. Whether this was truly necessary is debatable, but the muffins turned out fine either way.

This makes a very dense muffin. These will definitely fill you up if you make them for breakfast. They have the barest hint of sweetness, but the most prevalent flavor is the slight tartness of the raspberries. These will not be short on raspberry flavor. Every muffin I had contained at least three raspberries in it, if not one or two more. They tasted best warm from the oven with a bit of butter, but still kept well for the next day. I wouldn’t recommend trying to make them last one or two days past baking though, as the raspberries within the muffins stay quite moist and moisture is generally not a friend to food preservation.

New Pinterest Recipe of the Week: Baked Oatmeal with Strawberries, Banana, and Chocolate

My dad and stepmom stopped for a quick visit as part of a larger road trip and I made breakfast the morning they were here. I needed to find something at least semi-healthy and this seemed like a good compromise between delicious and relatively good for you. The original recipe came from Inspired Taste, but I tweaked it quite a bit so I will be giving you my adaptation based on the original recipe.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups old fashioned rolled oats
  • 1/3 cup packed brown sugar and approx. 3 Tbsp. separate
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1-2 tsp. cinnamon, depending on taste
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts
  • 2 cups sliced strawberries
  • 1/3 cup dark chocolate mini-chocolate chips
  • 2 cups milk (I used whole milk)
  • 1 large egg
  • 3 Tbsp. butter, melted (I used unsalted)
  • 2-3 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 large ripe banana, peeled and sliced

Preheat your oven to 375°F and spray a 2 qt. baking dish with cooking spray, then place it on a baking sheet.

In a large bowl mix together oats, brown sugar (1/3 cup), baking powder, cinnamon, salt, half of the walnuts, half of the sliced strawberries, and half of the chocolate chips. Put mixture in your baking dish and then top with you remaining strawberries, banana, walnuts, and chocolate chips.

In another bowl, whisk together the egg, milk, melted butter, and vanilla extract. Pour this mixture over the oat/fruit mixture in the baking dish. Gently shake the baking dish to make sure the milk mixture makes it throughout the oat/fruit mixture.

Sprinkle the extra brown sugar you set aside over the top and bake in the oven for 35-40 minutes. Top should be golden brown and the milk should be set.

IMG_1403

Tweaks and Overall Review:

Like I said above, this was a recipe that I sort of ran with from the beginning. The main changes I made from the original were in the amounts of ingredients used. I used double the amount of strawberries and walnuts and also increased the amount of cinnamon and vanilla (though this was done to my taste, feel free to adjust them to whatever you prefer). I did omit one thing from the original recipe, which was orange zest. I am not particularly fond of oranges (food sensitivity) and so I don’t keep them on hand. It seemed silly to buy an orange just for a little bit of zest.

How did this turn out? In a word: YUM! This was a great way to start the morning. The bananas infused a nice flavor to the oats and, of course, blended very well with the melted chocolate. At the same time, when you got a bite of strawberry, there was a nice burst of flavor on top of the banana and chocolate. The walnuts gave a nice texture and crunch to the finished dish, so it wasn’t all soft and chewy. Also, this reheated very well the next day (though there was only a small portion leftover in the first place) so if you make it for a Sunday breakfast, the leftovers (if there are any) will still make a lovely breakfast on Monday as well.

 

For Memorial Day:

Today is Memorial Day, a day to honor those who didn’t come home. Enjoy your holiday, but please take a moment to remember who this holiday was established for: the men and women who have made the ultimate sacrifice in service to their country.

New Pinterest Recipe of the Week: Cream Cheese Banana Nut Bread

A few weeks ago I was complaining that having my girls has made it almost impossible for me to make any sort of baked good with bananas. The issue isn’t that they don’t like bananas. Quite the opposite, they LOVE bananas. And therein lies the problem. Bananas never seem to last long enough around here to get to that overripe state that’s perfect for baking all manner of delicious banana flavored treats.

As if an answer to prayer, the other day a friend mentioned she had some bananas on their way to overripe perfection and asked if I wanted them. OF COURSE! I was so excited! It’s been so long since I’ve had bananas ready for baking, I knew this called for trying a new recipe. The answer was staring at me from the fridge. A big Costco size tub of cream cheese sitting in my fridge just screamed, “Make the Cream Cheese Banana Nut Bread! You’ve had that recipe pinned for almost a year!” And so I did.

I found this particular recipe at Sugar & Spice by Celeste. The recipe makes two loaves, so plan accordingly.

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup of butter, softened (I used unsalted)
  • 1 8oz. package of cream cheese, softened
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 cup chopped nuts, toasted
  • 1 1/2 cups mashed banana (About 4 medium sized bananas)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Preheat your oven to 350°F and grease and flour two loaf pans (8×4 size, or close to). (Once your oven is at temperature, you can use the time between the oven being ready and finishing the recipe to toast your nuts. Just spread them on a baking sheet and let them toast in the oven for about 10 minutes.)

Beat butter and cream cheese together with an electric mixer on medium speed until creamy. Gradually add your sugar, beating until the mixture is light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating until just blended after each addition.

In a separate bowl combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Gradually add your dry ingredients to the butter mixture, beating on low speed until just blended. Stir in your mashed bananas, toasted nuts, and vanilla extract. Divide your batter between your two loaf pans.

Bake for one hour or until a tester stick comes out clean and the sides are pulling away from the pan. Cool in pans for 10 minutes, then remove to wire racks. Cool at least 30 minutes before slicing.

IMG_1390

Tweaks and Overall Review:

The original recipe called for using pecans, but I didn’t have any on hand so I used walnuts (which I did have on hand) instead. I don’t think it made much of a difference either way. I also didn’t have two 8×4 loaf pans, so I used one 8×4 and one 9×5. The loaf in the 8×4 pan was done after one hour 10 minutes, while the loaf in the 9×5 pan needed to stay in the oven for about one hour 20 minutes.

The recipe produces a very moist banana bread, but at the same time I felt there was something missing. There was a nice, even banana flavor, but it seemed a little flat to my taste. I think next time I will add a teaspoon or so of cinnamon to the butter/sugar mixture and see if that doesn’t give the bread the little kick my palate thought it needed.

New Pinterest Recipe of the Week: Strawberry Cream Cheese Cobbler

We had friends over for dinner and I figured it was the perfect excuse to test out a new dessert recipe. Since we have been getting such lovely strawberries the past month or so, I knew it had to include strawberries in some form or fashion. Off I went to my Pinterest boards to find something to try. I came up with three potential contenders, and ended up settling on Strawberry Cream Cheese Cobbler. (Don’t worry, the other two contenders will be made in due time, probably as their own “New Pinterest Recipe of the Week” over the next month or so.)

Now, since this is a Pinterest recipe, this obviously isn’t something of my own creation. This particular recipe came from Berks County News Reading Eagle Newspaper. You can find the original article and recipe here.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup butter (1 stick, I used unsalted)
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 cup milk (I used whole milk)
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 tsps. baking powder (Make sure it hasn’t expired, since this is what makes the crust rise.)
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 2 qts. strawberries (For me this equalled about 2.5 lbs., but you may use a little more or a little less. The original recipe called for removing the caps of the strawberries, but otherwise leaving them whole. Since I had some rather large strawberries I ended up quartering or halving them, and I think that worked out fine.)
  • 4 oz. cream cheese (I used 4 oz. as a starting point, and sort of eyeballed it, putting teaspoon size dollops at semi-regular intervals over the strawberries.)

Preheat your oven to 350°F. Melt your butter and pour into a 9×13 baking dish. While the butter is melting, mix your egg, milk, flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Pour the batter directly into the baking dish with the melted butter, but do not mix them together.

Add your strawberries, as much as possible keeping them in an even, single layer (but don’t worry about a little overlap). Add chunks/spoonfuls of cream cheese on top of the strawberries.

Place the cobbler in your preheated oven and bake for approx. 45-50 minutes or until the top is golden and the edges are bubbling.

Image

Tweaks and Overall Review:

Aside from what I mentioned above regarding the strawberries and the cream cheese, the only other tweak I had to make from the original recipe was an increase in the baking time. Since I am at a high altitude, I had to add about 15 minutes in order to get the golden crust, bringing my total bake time to about an hour.

In the end, though, the extra 15 minutes was well worth it. This was a delicious dessert for late spring/early summer. The crust is more cake-like, but gives a nice base to the cobbler. The flavor of the strawberries is really given a chance to shine, since the crust is not overly sweet and the cream cheese is a nice compliment, but not overpowering. Also, with such easy prep, this is definitely something I would consider making as a contribution to a potluck or similar event.