Somoa Cookie Bars

Another Girl Scout cookie season has come and gone, but you can still whip up a batch of these babies to satisfy your Samoa (Or Caramel de Lite) craving!

Origingal Recipe is Here: http://www.crazyforcrust.com/2014/02/samoa-magic-bars/

Here’s What You Need

½ cup butter, softened
1 ½ cups flour
½ cup sugar
Pinch of salt
2 cups chocolate chips (semi-sweet or milk)
1 cup sweetened shredded coconut
18 square caramels, cut in half
1 can (14 ounces) fat-free sweetened condensed milk

And Here’s What You Do

1. Line a 9×13 pan with foil and spray with cooking spray. Trust me, you don’t want to try to remove these babies if you don’t have the foil and the cooking spray
2. Preheat oven to 350°F. In a stand mixer, beat the butter until smooth. Add in the flour, sugar, and salt. Once combined, the mixture will be crumbly and look very dry. However, you should be able to press it together with your fingers and have it stick together. (see picture below) Press into the bottom of the prepared pan. Bake for 10 minutes.
3. Remove hot crust from the oven and sprinkle with chocolate chips, coconut, and caramels. Finish with sweetened condensed milk evenly over the top. Bake for 25-30 minutes until golden around the edges. Cool completely before cutting.
4. Store in an airtight container.

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What I Did
I should have thought about the layers on these bars before I dove into the recipe. I should have layered chocolate first (of course they were the little mini chips), then the caramel, then the coconut, then the sweetened condensed milk. It would have looked prettier that way. Instead, I have this lovely mess of mini chocolate chips glistening over the pale coconut. They would have tasted the same either way, but aesthetically would have been more appealing, I think.

As revealed in another post, I am a sucker for sweetened condensed milk. Lord only knows why. There isn’t anything truly appealing about the stuff, and it tends to get everywhere if you don’t pay attention while you are pouring it out of the can. Still, I can’t help but love the way it splodges up and oozes into every nook and cranny of whatever you are baking.

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Since this recipe contains several of my favorite things, I am an unfair judge as to how these turned out. Scott would have liked them better if the caramel was spread out a bit more, so that can be accomplished by cutting the caramel a little smaller or using caramel chips instead of the squares.

Still, I think that this one will be for the recipe books.

Until Next Time,
Peace, Love, and Cupcakes

 

Duo – Chip Pecan Cookies

After last week’s fiasco of a recipe (although they did turn out to be ok. Just really cakey and soft), I knew that I wanted to step up my game and give Scott something really good this week. I thought about ingredients that I had, and what I wanted to accomplish. I was dreaming up this grand recipe that had cinnamon and pecans and white and semi-sweet chocolate chips in it, and I turned to Pinterest to help me find something that was similar enough to my vision that I could work off of.

Turns out, I pinned exactly was I was looking for a few weeks ago. Yeah, so much for grandiose original ideas.

Whatever. The cookies are awesome. And I feel redeemed.

Original Recipe is here: http://www.thecafesucrefarine.com

 

Here’s What you Need

1 cup butter

1 ¼ cups Brown Sugar

½ cup Sugar

1 egg

1 egg yolk

1 tsp vanilla

2 cups flour

1 cup oats

½ tsp baking soda

½ tsp salt

¼ tsp cinnamon

1 cup white chocolate chips

1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

1 cup roughly chopped pecans

 

And Here’s What You Do

1. Melt the butter over medium heat. Stir in the sugars until incorporated and smooth. Remove from heat and chill the mixture for 10 minutes.

2. I chopped my pecans during the 10 minute chill out. And measured out the white and semi-sweet chocolate chips for ease of adding to the recipe.

3. Remove the butter and sugar mix from the fridge and stir in the egg and egg yolk and the vanilla. Add the oats, flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon and stir until combined.

4. Stir in the chocolate chips and the nuts. At this point, I removed my rings, washed my hands thoroughly, and went to town on the mix with my hands. The poor spoon could not hold up.

5. Roll into small balls and place on your prepared cookie sheets.

6. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Chill those little cookie dough balls for 30 minutes.

7. Bake the cookies for 14-18 minutes. Let them chill out on the sheet for a few minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.

 

What I Did

Normally, I am not one to chill dough. I have not had good experiences with it at all. But, due to the hearty nature of this dough, I felt that it had a fighting chance of standing up to whatever strange chemical reaction normally happens when I chill dough and it turns out poorly. But, since this dough started out life pretty warm, I thought that it would be ok.

I also used my trusty cookie scoop instead of rolling them into balls.

The recipe calls for 1/4 tsp of cinnamon, but I used more like 1/2 tsp.  I was in a cinnamon mood. And we have plenty.

Oh, and you know that I used the mini chocolate chips.  I bought another bag, just to have them around.

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I didn’t leave these guys for a minute when they were in the oven. I hovered over the door like a mother hen over her newly-hatched chicks. I turned the light on, looked nervously every few seconds…I wanted nothing to happen to these. I should not have worried so much as they turned out perfectly. Not too big, not too dark on the bottom, just all shades of perfect!

I think Scott liked them, as cookies kept disappearing throughout the afternoon as they cooled. Of course, he looks innocent and never knows what I’m talking about when I asked him about the missing cookies…

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Until Next Time,

Peace, Love, and Cupcakes

Carrot Cake Cookies

There are some times when I really hate baking.  I start with good intentions, and really wanting to bake everything that I possibly can in my kitchen.  And that is how yesterday started.

And then the chewy oatmeal balls kept dropping sticky oaty bits on the floor.

And then my mixer spit brown sugar out at me.  And then flour.  After it had leaked grease out the back of the machine onto my clean shorts.

And then there were shredded carrots everywhere.

Miraculously, I ended up with carrot cake cookies.  I should have iced them and made sandwiches, but I thought that my luck was about to run out, so I backed away from the kitchen and just let the carrot cake cookies lie where they were.  Thank goodness that Scott cleaned up.  I probably would have broken the dishwasher.

Original recipe is here: www.landolakes.com

 

What You Need

1 cup butter, softened

¾ cup brown sugar

¾ cup sugar

2 eggs

2 tsp vanilla

2 ½ cups flour

1 tsp baking soda

2 tsp cinnamon

½ tsp salt

1 cup chopped pecan

2 cups grated grated carrots

 

And Here’s What You Do

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Mix together the butter and the sugars until light and fluffy.
  2. Add the eggs and the vanilla. Mix well.
  3. Add the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt and mix well.  Add the pecans and the carrots
  4. Drop by rounded tablespoonfuls onto a prepared cookie sheet.  Bake for 12-15 minutes or until slightly brown around the edges.

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What I Did

I forgot the pecans.  Didn’t realize it until just now.  Sometimes I’m truly amazed that I can make it through the day.

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They are a lot softer than I anticipated.  Scott says they are very cakey in texture.  It’s a nice change from the heavy cookies that can dominate my baking schedule, plus I think of spring when I think of carrot cake.  I think I will have to try this one again, but do it right this time!

 

Until Next Time,

Peace, Love, and Cupcakes

German Chocolate Cookies – The Cookies That Seemed to Take Forever

See, this is what I don’t understand.  A recipe that says it takes 35 minutes from start to finish should take 35 minutes from start to finish.  I worked on this recipe for two hours.  And that was with starting with softened butter.  Unless all the cookie sheets are going into the oven at the same time, there is no way that this recipe could take 35 minutes.  I spent 35 minutes just baking the dang things since I can only fit two cookie sheets in my oven at a time.  Please don’t get me wrong, I’m not criticizing the author of the original recipe, I’m just trying to figure out why these recipes always take me at least twice as long to get through.  If anyone has any idea, please let me know!

Original Recipe is here: http://www.adashofsanity.com/2014/01/german-chocolate-cake-cookies/

What You Need

For the Cookie:

2 sticks butter, softened

1 cup brown sugar

1 cup sugar

2 tsps vanilla

2 large eggs, beaten

2 ¼ cups flour

½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder

1 tsp baking soda

Pinch salt

For the Frosting:

1 cup evaporated milk

1 cup sugar

3 egg yolks

½ cup butter

1 tsp vanilla

1 1/3 cup sweetened shredded coconut

1 cup chopped pecans

And Here’s What You Do

For the Cookie:

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Prepare your sheets using your favorite method.
  2. Mix together the butter, sugars, vanilla and eggs until combined.  In a separate bowl, stir together the flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt.  Carefully add the flour mixture into the butter mixture and mix until combined.
  3. Drop by tablespoonful onto the cookie sheets.  Bake for 8 to 10 minutes and cool on a wire rack.

For the Frosting:

  1. In a large saucepan over medium heat, combine the evaporated milk, sugar, egg yolks, butter, and vanilla.
  2. Stir to combine, then continue to stir until the mixture becomes thickened (this takes about 11 minutes).
  3. Once the mixture thickens, remove it from the heat and stir in the coconut and pecans.  Combine and cool until thick enough to spread on the cookies.

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Normally when I make frosted cookies, I always have a ton of frosting left over.  This time, I was not so lucky!  I have five naked cookies cooling on the rack right now.  Granted, I could have scraped some of the excess off the others…

I’m pretty pleased with the way that these turned out.  I wasn’t sure what I was going to make this morning, and was going down the list of recipes that I want to try when I called this one out to Scott.  He seemed pretty keen to the idea, so I jumped at the chance to make him something that he actually asked for.

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Until Next Time,

Peace, Love, and Cupcakes