Chocolate Loaf Cake, A Rumford Complete Cookbook Recipe

Need an easy recipe to bake and take? This Chocolate Loaf Cake recipe is great for that! I made it the other day for a snack carry in I attended and it went over well.

Simply mix everything together, bake, cool, slice and you’re done!

This cake is light, fluffy and moist!

One slice of the loaf is perfect for like chocolate fix too!

The Chocolate Loaf Cake recipe is on page 135 of the Rumford Complete Cookbook. Below is a copy of the recipe.

Chocolate Loaf Cake Recipe Original

Here is my version:

Chocolate Loaf Cake

Ingredients:
1 1/2 c. sugar
1/2 c. butter, room temperature
2 eggs
1 c. milk
2 c. flour
2 tsp. Rumford Baking Powder
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 chocolate squares

Directions:
In a large mixing bowl beat one cup of the sugar with the butter to bring to a cream. Add the eggs, 1/2 of milk and vanilla. Mix together well. Add the flour and baking powder to the mixture and beat them into the other ingredients. Set aside.
In a small saucepan, add the remainder of the sugar and milk and the chocolate squares. Cook until chocolate is dissolved, stiring occassionally. Add the chocolate mixture to the cake batter and beat together well.
Bake in a loaf pan at 350° F. for 1 hour.

After cooling, you can also add your favorite frosting!

Baking with Halloween Candy

Every year I do through the same thing…I stock up on Halloween candy for Trick or Treat only to end up with extra candy because rain or cold weather limited how much we give out. I’ve even tried going to my parent’s house to hand out candy, as they live on a main street in town which is home to a lot of kids. We start handing out candy in the drive way handing, but as soon as the sun sets and the wind picks up, we move inside. Fewer and fewer kids visit as the wind picks up and the little kids get tired. Inevitably, I have some leftover Halloween candy and wonder what I am going to do with all of it. This year, I know exactly what I’ll do! I’ve tested all three of these recipes and much to my co-workers delight, they turned out great!

Halloween Candy Bark

Halloween Candy Bark

If you like your sweets with just a hint of salt, this Halloween Candy Bark is for you! I lined a baking sheet with wax paper and covered the bottom with broken pretzels and chopped pecans and walnuts. Then I poured melted chocolate chips on the top of the bottom layer. You could use white or milk chocolate or even a layer of both. If you microwave the chocolate chips to melt them, do it in 30 second intervals, stirring in between, so the chocolate doesn’t scorch. While the chocolate was still warm, I topped the candy bark with some leftover candy eyeballs and candy coated peanut butter candies. You could also use other chocolate covered candies and get pretty creative with this recipe. I set the baking sheet in the fridge to help the chocolate cool quickly. Once it was completely chilled, I broke the bark into 3-to 4-inch pieces. There are so many options you can choose with Halloween Candy Bark, all depending on your taste.

Bottom of the Bucket Cookies

Bottom of the Bucket Cookies

When you have a wide assortment of extra Halloween candy, try putting pieces on top of a sugar cookie. These cookies lasted about 20 minutes in our office! Halloween candy in wrappers, however, is still sitting in the lunchroom. Everything tastes better on top of our Rumford Sugar Cookies! It’s a sturdy cookie with a good crunch to it when you bite in. Watch them closely in your oven and take them out just as the edges start to brown. If you let the cookies become golden brown before removing from the oven, they will likely be dried out.

I used candy coated chocolate candies, candy corn and broken pieces of chocolate candies. Candy coated chocolate or peanut butter can go on top of the cookies before you bake them, but everything else should be pressed into the cookies as soon as they are out of the oven. You can even make indentations in the top of the cookies for the candies before they are baked to make it easier to place them after baking. The chocolate candies melted a little, making them stick perfectly to the cookie tops.

Chocolate Candy Bread

Chocolate Candy Bread

The chocolate candy bread recipe was the most popular in our office! It is visually so beautiful and filled with all of your chocolate candy favorites! I took our chocolate buttermilk bread recipe and added a one and a half cups of assorted mini chocolate candies. When the bread came out of the oven, I drizzled melted white chocolate on top with a little milk mixed in so it was just the right consistency. I added some coarsely chopped chocolate mini candies, too. When you cut into the bread, you won’t see all of the chocolate candy, but you can taste the different ones throughout the loaf of bread. This is the perfect recipe to make on November 1st to use all your leftover Halloween candy.

Chai Chocolate Quick Bread

When I think of fall, I think of baking. Once those leaves start ever so slightly turning colors and the nights get a little bit longer and a tad bit cooler, I’m ready to break out my mixer and crank up the oven. I love making pies from scratch or exploring fun new soup or side dishes, but my weakness during the fall leading into the holidays will always be bread. I’ve definitely been known to set aside a whole day (sometimes two!) dedicated solely to bread making. But I know that life oftentimes makes it to where setting aside that much time just isn’t realistic.

Enter…quick breads. Unlike yeast breads, quick breads do not contain any yeast at all in the dough and use Clabber Girl Baking Powder and/or Clabber Girl Baking Soda as a leavening agent. Because we’re omitting the yeast and using a chemical leavening agent instead, we’re able to cut out all the time needed for yeast breads to rise. The end result is usually a very tasty bread that took a faction of the time to make. So though I love yeast breads, I always end up making A LOT of quick breads this time of year.

Generally made a little on the sweet side, quick breads are great because of their versatility. You can make savory breads (Rosemary, Thyme & Asiago Cheese sounds good to me!) perfect as a side for dinner slathered with butter or sliced and toasted to dunk in your favorite fall soup. The ever popular Banana Bread or Pumpkin Bread are always amazing recipes to have in your recipe box. You can even go crazy and indulge with a Chocolate Quick Bread Drizzled with Dark & White Chocolate with Toasted Nuts sprinkled on top. The possibilities are endless and perfect for you to make it your own for your family to enjoy.

As you can probably tell, I have been thinking a lot lately about quick bread flavors. I wanted to find something unique and different, that still had all my favorite fall flavors in it (and chocolate, everything is better with chocolate, right?). That’s when I decided on Chai Chocolate Quick Bread. I love the warm spice notes you get when drinking a Chai latte, so they go perfect in this fall bread.

You’ll need two bowls to make this bread, one for your dry ingredients and one for your wet ingredients. Because we’re using baking powder (which reacts to liquid) to leaven our bread you want to keep your dry ingredients separated from your wet until you’re ready to mix and immediately go into your dish and bake. This bread is tasty all on its own, but you can always kick it up a notch and serve it with a maple-cinnamon compound butter. Plus they make great gifts during the holidays and are perfect as mini loaves as well (you’d get 3 from this recipe). I hope when all is said and done and you’re taking your first bite you enjoyed it as much as I did!

Chai Chocolate Quick Bread

Makes: 1 loaf
Ingredients:
1 ½ c. all-purpose flour
1 tsp. Clabber Girl Baking Powder
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. ground ginger
1 tsp. ground cardamom
½ tsp. ground cloves
½ tsp. ground nutmeg
½ tsp kosher salt
2 eggs
1 c. chai concentrate
¼ c. granulated sugar
¼ c. coconut oil, melted & slightly cooled
1 c. semi-sweet chocolate chips

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350° F. Line a bread loaf pan with parchment paper.

Line Bread Pan with Parchment Paper
In a large bowl mix flour, Clabber Girl Baking Powder, spices and salt. Set aside.

Dry Ingredients Chai Chocolate Bread
In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs, chia concentrate, sugar, and coconut oil. Set aside.

Liquid Ingredients Chai Chocolate Bread
Place chocolate chips in a microwave safe bowl, and microwave for 30 seconds. If needed, microwave for an additional 15-30 seconds and stir until smooth.

Melted Chocolate
Slowly pour your wet ingredients into your dry ingredient bowl and stir until just combined.

Mixing Chai Chocolate Bread

Pour batter into your prepared bread loaf pan. Drizzle melted chocolate over the top and using a butter knife gently swirl the chocolate on top, just barely mixing it in with the batter.

Marble Chai Chocolate Bread
Bake in a 350° F for 40-45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the bread comes out clean. Let cool 15 minutes before removing from pan and slicing.

Chai Chocolate Quick Bread Hero 2

Salted Vanilla Marshmallow Cream S’mores

S'mores Hero

It’s perfect camping weather! That time of year when the days are warm and the nights are cool. It’s perfect for a bowl of chili and perfect for that all-American messy treat . . . S’mores! But, if you are anything like me, I don’t want to wait for a camping trip to have S’mores. I may make S’mores on a random Tuesday afternoon or enjoy one on the couch as a midnight snack.

I love the elements of a S’more and how they work together to make that perfect treat. Crunchy graham crackers, chocolate, and gooey toasty marshmallows. Each ingredient brings an important element to the table. But, of course, I can’t help but play with it a little bit!

This recipe is my version of a S’more. The Biscoff cookie is an elevated version of a graham cracker. It’s crispy and crunchy like a graham cracker but, has notes of ginger and more complexity. The marshmallows are replaced with a home-made salted vanilla marshmallow cream. It’s creamy and sweet and salty and messy and delicious. For the chocolate, I used a high-quality European chocolate. And, to top it off, I added candied orange peel. It pairs so well with the Biscoff cookie and adds a slight note of sweet-bitter that plays really well with the chocolate.

This recipe is designed so that you can make it indoors. But, all the ingredients travel well so, they could easily go outdoors with you to be assembled by the fire. Enjoy!

S’mores Recipe

Candied Orange Peel

3 medium oranges
2 cups sugar + ½ cup sugar for dusting
1 cup water

Combine the 2 cups of sugar and water in a medium pot. Heat over medium-low heat until sugar dissolves.
Meanwhile, using a vegetable peeler, peel strips of skin from the oranges being careful not to get the white pith.
Add the orange peel to the simple syrup and simmer for about 40 minutes.
Drain the orange peel and toss in the remaining ½ cup of sugar. Lay candied orange strips out on a wire rack and allow to cool and air dry. Orange peel can be stored in dusting sugar in airtight container for up to two weeks.

Salted Vanilla Marshmallow Cream

1/3 cup water
¾ cup sugar
1 cup light corn syrup
3 egg whites
½ tsp. cream of tartar
1 Tbsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. salt

Combine the water, sugar, and corn syrup in saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Simmer the mixture, not stirring, until it reaches 240F on a candy thermometer.

Meanwhile, in a stand mixer combine the egg whites and cream of tartar. Whip the egg whites until they form stiff peaks.

When the sugar mixture reaches 240F take off of heat. With the stand mixture running on low, drizzle the hot liquid into the egg whites. Once all the liquid is incorporated, add the vanilla and salt. Beat the mixture for another minute or so until smooth and shiny.

Marshmallow cream can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.

 

S’mores Assembly

Biscoff Cookies
High – quality dark or milk chocolate
Salted Vanilla Marshmallow Cream
Candied Orange Peel

S'mores Ingredients

Spread a small spoonful of marshmallow cream on a Biscoff cookie. Top with broken pieces of chocolate.
Spread a small spoonful of marshmallow cream on a second Biscoff cookie and place on top of first Biscoff cookie.
With a kitchen torch, burn the exposed marshmallow on the top and on the sides.
Top with a candied orange peel. Enjoy!

Chocolate Chip Cookie No-Churn Ice Cream Sandwiches

I love chocolate chip cookies. I haven’t met a person who doesn’t love the buttery crumbs of a freshly made cookie. This chocolate chip cookie recipe comes from my mother’s index of recipes. This recipe is one of the few foods that will always bring me happiness, time and time again. Nowadays, when I’m feeling stressed or anxious, I whip up a batch of these cookies and my worries, much like the plate of cookies, quickly begin to vanish. There is something so comforting about biting into a warm chocolate chip cookie. It’s a memory thing.

Growing up, my mother would make my brother and I these cookies as an after school treat. Right off the bus, we could smell the wafting sends of melted butter and gooey chocolate. Running into the kitchen, these buttery beauties were cooling slowly on the counter. My mother would put a few cookies on a plate, hand my brother and I each a glass of milk, and the two of us would begin eating as many cookies we could possibly stand until our stomachs ached. Its memories like these that come from these cookies that will always leave a lasting impression on me.

No-churn ice cream is a popular trending in the blogging/home cooking scene. Like myself, who doesn’t have enough cabinet space to hold all my plates let alone an ice cream machine, this no-churn recipe is the way to go. Just three simple ingredients and six hours of waiting and you have a creamy and sweetly decadent dessert that can be great on its own, topped with hot fudge, or sandwiched between two chocolate chip cookies. Hey! Now that’s a good idea.

Chocolate Chip Cookie No-Churn Ice Cream Sandwiches

Ingredients
1 c. brown sugar
1 c. granulated sugar
2/3 c. butter, soften
2/3 c. shortening
2 eggs
2 tsp. vanilla extract
3 c. flour
1 tsp. Clabber Girl baking soda
1 tsp. salt
1 (12-oz. bag) semi-sweet chocolate chips

2 c. Heavy Cream
1 (14 oz.) can Sweetened Condense Milk
2 Tbsp. Vanilla Exact

Directions

For the ice-cream: Place a metal mixing bowl and metal whisk into the freezer for 10 to 15 minutes.

Take the bowl and whisks out of the freezer and add the heavy cream. Begin to mix on medium-high speed until stiff peaks form, about 7-8 minutes.
Add the sweetened condensed milk and mix with a large wooden spoon or baking spatula until fully combined. Stir in the vanilla extract. Transfer to a 9×13 baking pan. Place in the freezer until set, about 6 hours.

Ice-Cream-1

For the cookies: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. In a stand mixer fitted with a hook attachment, beat together the brown sugar, granulated sugar, butter, and shortening until the mixture is incorporated and light in color. Add in the eggs and vanilla extract and mix until combined.

Cream-Sugar-and-Butter

Slowly add in the dry ingredients: flour, baking soda, and salt. Allow to mix on low at first, then gradually increase speed as the mixture begins to come together. Stir in the semi-sweet chocolate chips.

Combine-Dry-Ingredients-For-Cookies

Using a tablespoon, form the dough into little spherical drops (about 1 ½ tablespoons). Spread the dropped dough 2 inches apart. On a 9 x 13 cookie sheet, 12 drop doughs fit perfectly.


Cookie-Dough-on-a-Sheet

Bake for 8-10 minutes or until the bottoms is a light golden brown color. Let cool completely.

Cookies-on-a-Sheet

 

For the sandwiches: Add one scoop of set ice cream onto one the bottom of one cookie. Sandwich another cookie on top and serve immediately.

Chocolate Chip Cookie No-Churn Ice Cream Sandwiches

Recipe yields: 24-30 cookies or 12-15 sandwiches.

Texas Sheet Cake

Texas Sheet Cake is a great dessert when you are baking for a crowd! A delicious combination of chocolate cake and brownies in one that everyone will love.

Texas Sheet Cake Easy Dessert

This recipe is another one of my favorites I have learned from my grandma! I know I have said it before with some other recipes, that I am wanting to learn some family recipes that everyone loves and that are favorites of mine. Texas Sheet Cakes are like a family tradition, you might have eaten it as a kid as well as your parents may have as well. Enjoyable every time!

Texas Sheet Cake definitely satisfies that craving for something chocolaty. It’s packed with flavor, moist, and buttery. Plus the frosting itself is amazingly tasty!

Texas Sheet Cake Final Shot

This cake recipe is baked in a large jelly roll pan creating a large cake, which is why it is perfect for get togethers and potlucks. A sweet treat for dessert and able to serve several.

Texas sheet cake is a easy recipe to put together, but one of the tricks to this yummy dessert is to frost it when the cake is still warm. This allows the frosting to be able to spread well on top of the cake and to soak into the cake as it cools.

Texas Sheet Cake

Ingredients:

Cake:
2 cups sugar
2 eggs
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp vanilla
2 sticks margarine – melted
2 cups flour
4 Tbsp cocoa
1 cup buttermilk
2 cups nuts -chopped (optional – I prefer pecans or walnuts best, but I usually leave the nuts out of the cake and just put in the icing).

Icing:
1 stick margarine – melted
4 Tbsp cocoa
6 Tbsp buttermilk
4 cups powdered sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 cup nuts – chopped (optional – I prefer pecans or walnuts best)

Directions:

In a mixing bowl combine sugar, eggs, salt, baking soda, vanilla and margarine together and mix. Then add the flour, cocoa, buttermilk, and nuts if choosing to. Mix with hand mixer until smooth.

Pour batter into a greased, large jelly roll pan (17″x 12″ x 2″ or so).

Bake at 350 degrees F. for 25 to 30 minutes.

Texas Sheet Cake Texture after Baking

As soon as the cake is done, make the icing. In a sauce pan combine margarine, cocoa, and buttermilk together as margarine melts. Then add the powdered sugar and vanilla. Stir until smooth. Add nuts if choosing to. Pour immediately over the warm cake and spread out to all edges of the cake.

Texas Sheet Cake Frosting

Make it with nuts, any kind of nuts you’d like, or without depending on your liking.

Chocolate Texas Sheet Cake with Frosting

Next time you need to serve several and thinking of a chocolate, cake, or brownie idea, this Texas Sheet Cake is a perfect and delicious option to bake!

Enjoy!

How to Bake a Yule Log

I first came across Yule Logs in French class back in high school where they were called bûche de Noël. I learned how these are a holiday tradition in France and some bakers get really into making their logs look like real wood. You can cut off one end of the log, remove some of the roll and decorate it to look like a branch. People also decorate Yule Logs with raspberries, fondant mushrooms and powdered sugar that looks like snow. Making this cake is unlike any other cake I’ve made before. You are basically making a sponge cake that gets its volume from the egg whites, not from flour. The finished product is a very light and spongy cake with a delicate crumb.

To start, you will want to preheat your oven to 375 degrees F. and generously grease a 15 x 10 x 1-inch jelly roll pan. Set out 8 oz. of cream cheese so that it gets to room temperature. In a small bowl, stir together 1/2 c. all-purpose flour, 1 tsp. Clabber Girl Baking Powder, 1/4 c. unsweetened cocoa powder and 1/4 tsp. salt.

Yule Log Step 1

In a separate medium bowl, beat 4 egg yolks (reserve the whites) with a 1/2 tsp. of vanilla extract until it thickens and turns a lemon yellow color. Add in 1/3 c. granulated sugar and beat to incorporate.

Yule Log Step 2

In a third large bowl, beat 4 egg whites until you get soft peaks. Soft peaks appear after just a couple of minutes of beating fresh eggs. You’ll notice the egg whites will more than double in volume and get very bubbly as air is incorporated. When you lift up your beater, the peaks will show up in the bowl and slowly melt back into the bowl. At this point, add 1/2 c. granulated sugar.

Yule Log Step 3

Continue to beat after you’ve added the sugar. Within a couple of minutes, the egg whites and sugar will turn glossier and whiter, forming stiff peaks. When you lift up your beater, the peaks will show up in the bowl and retain their shape.

Yule Log Step 4

Fold in your egg yolk and flour mixture into your egg whites to get your Yule Log batter. Although your puppy may want to help you at this point, remember this is a chocolate batter that isn’t good for dogs!

Yule Log Step 5

Pour the batter into the prepared jelly roll pan. Use a spatula to get the batter into the corners and make it even in the pan. At this point you are ready for the oven. Put the jelly roll into a 375 degree F. oven for 12-15 minutes. Mine took me exactly 12 minutes, so be careful about the time.

Yule Log Step 6

While the pan is in the oven, you can prepare to roll the cake as soon as it comes out of the oven. Place a large dish towel on the counter. Cover with plastic wrap and sprinkle with powdered sugar.

Yule Log Step 7

Test the cake by putting your finger on the center part and seeing if it springs back when touched gently.

Yule Log Step 8

Carefully flip over the pan onto the prepared towel. Pound on the back side of the pan to ensure it releases. In hindsight, I would recommend lining with parchment paper so the cake looks better. Start at one end of the towel and roll it up while you prepare the filling. I thought this would be the hardest part, but it was really easy. You roll the cake while it is still warm so that it doesn’t crack or break when you add the frosting and roll it later on.

Yule Log Step 9

In a medium bowl, whip together 8 oz. of room temperature cream cheese and 1/2 c. of granulated sugar. Add 8 oz. of frozen whipped topping and mix well.

Yule Log Step 10

Add 2 Tbsp. of Corn Starch, I used Davis Corn Starch, 1/4 c. unsweetened cocoa powder and 1/8 tsp. salt. Mix until combined well.

Yule Log Step 11

Unroll the cake and spread the filling all the way to the edges.

Yule Log Step 12

I had a little extra frosting left over, you don’t want the filling to be too thick to roll.

Yule Log Step 13

Here comes the fun part! Roll the cake up, pressing together so that the filling doesn’t squeeze out.

Yule Log Step 14

Use the plastic wrap to cover up the Yule Log and chill for 2 hours in the refrigerator.

Yule Log Step 15

Remove the chilled cake and decorate it!

Yule Log Step 16

We enjoyed about half of the Yule Log at home and brought in the other half to work. It will make ten 1-inch size wheels.

Yule Log Recipe:

1/2 c. all-purpose flour

1 tsp. Clabber Girl Baking Powder

1/4 c. unsweetened cocoa

1/4 tsp. salt

4 egg yolks

1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

1/3 c. granulated sugar

4 egg whites

1/2 c. granulated sugar

powdered sugar, for sprinkling

Filling:

8 oz. package of cream cheese, room temperature

1/2 c. granulated sugar

8 oz. frozen whipped topping

2 Tbsp. Clabber Girl Corn Starch

1/4 c. unsweetened cocoa

1/8 tsp. salt

Garnish: raspberries

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.; grease and flour a 15x10x1-inch pan; set aside.

In a medium bowl combine flour, Clabber Girl Baking Powder, cocoa and salt. In a separate bowl beat egg yolks and vanilla until thick and lemon colored; whisk in the 1/3 cup of sugar. In a small bowl beat egg whites to soft peaks and add 1/2 cup of sugar gradually, beating well after each addition. Beat to form stiff peaks; fold in egg yolk and flour mixtures.

Pour into prepared pan and bake at 375 degrees F. for 12 to 15 minutes, or until cake springs back when touched gently. Immediately remove from pan and roll into towel sprinkled with powdered sugar. Let cool. Meanwhile, prepare filling. In a medium bowl whip together the cream cheese and sugar. Add whipped topping and mix well. Add cornstarch, cocoa and salt; whip until combined, about one minute. Unroll cake and spread with filling mixture. Carefully roll up again, gently pressing just enough to roll without thinning the filling out.

Chill for 2 hours and serve.

Free Your Chocolate

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1dark-&-white-chocolate-cookies

 

All About That…Box? 7 Recipes to Free Your Chocolate

Chocolate Blog RecipesWe’re two weeks into February, and the time has come yet again: Valentine’s Day is upon us. Cupid lets fly his arrows, and meanwhile everyone else lets fly their opinions of the holiday. Discussions of Valentine’s Day are, perhaps appropriately, seething with words of passion—even those who do not “love” or “hate” the day seem to invoke their apathy toward it with an adamant sort of stoicism. Regardless, winter has dragged us to the very precipice of spring madness, and as the days grow longer, we are called to celebrate all the love in our lives. Amid the roses, champagne, pink hearts and stuffed animals, all the kitsch and cliché associated with February 14th, one traditional treat stands head and shoulders above the crowd: chocolate.

What is it about chocolate that feeds the soul? Watch any channel, any time of year, and chances are you’ll encounter at least one commercial featuring a woman nibbling sensuously on a glossy square, a backdrop of red velvet and melted chocolate weaving an ambience of indulgence behind her. Women love chocolate, or so they say, and as such expect that quaint heart-shaped box come Valentine’s Day. The box is nice, but this narrative is too simple. A soul cannot thrive in a box.

Chocolate is so much more than an affectionate gift—it is a global power. One can taste cacao from Peru, Mexico, Brazil, and Indonesia… from tannin-rich and earthy to bright and fruity, chocolate presents a vast spectrum of flavors that open international doors. Let’s take chocolate out of its box for a moment. The entire world is having an affair with chocolate, and on Valentine’s Day, there is even more of an excuse to feel the love, regardless of where you fall on the love-hate scale.

Chocolate is a comfort when sweet, a pick-me-up when dark, a bit of both when spiced. We’ll take any opportunity to become more intimate with chocolate and Valentine’s Day is just one of those opportunities. By all means, enjoy your boxed chocolate, but don’t stop there, for your soul’s sake.

If you’re looking for some inspiration, either to share with a loved one or to hoard, dragon-like, for yourself, here are seven sweet recipes to get you started on the path to freeing your chocolate. Enjoy a piece of chocolate as you read, keeping in mind that these ideas are just a fraction of chocolate’s potential. February 14th, or any other day when you’re feeling the love, know that the options are limitless when it comes to rich chocolate dessert—no box required.

  1. Add a little extra decadence to fudgy brownies with a rich chocolate frosting. Go ahead and lick the spoon, an experience denied you by prepackaged chocolates. No box, no regrets.
  2. Decorate your chocolate layer cake with fancy chocolate swirls and twirls, should you desire to impress. Fancy not in your box of tricks? Simply run a vegetable peeler or paring knife across the thin edge of a bar of your favorite chocolate, at room temperature, to get curls to garnish instead. Go crazy and use flavored chocolate or a combination of light and dark chocolate. If you dare.
  3. Speaking of various chocolates, these cookies are made with both dark chocolate and white chocolate, for a bit of contrast and an extra level of sweetness. Who says you need to limit yourself to one shade, or fifty shades, of chocolate?
  4. It’s possible to provide a classic sort of treat without a box. If you’re feeling adventurous, take your cookie to the next level and make it a whoopie pie. Far better than the purchased version, these match comfort with creativity.
  5. On the other hand, if your passion for chocolate is so great that you can’t wait until dessert to dig in, consider breakfast in bed, instead. Nothing says “good morning” like double chocolate raspberry muffins. Just try to fit these into a box. If you do, ship them to someone who might like a chocolaty breakfast in bed.
  6. And, while we’re on the subject of raspberries, these holiday pancakes from The Baker Chick are equal parts adorable and delicious. Heart-shaped, sans the heart-shaped container.
  7. But if you’re more of a waffles kind of person, we’ve got those for you, too! Top with homemade whipped cream and strawberries for the kind of fresh, irresistible sweetness and warmth you could never get from something pre-packaged.Valentine’s Day is not for all, but chocolate is certainly for most. If these desserts don’t light your fire, open the box even wider. Go sweet and salty and add coarse flakes of sea salt, caramel, or peanut butter to a chocolate recipe. Get cozy with a mug of homemade bittersweet hot chocolate spiced with chilies, perfect to have alongside any of these recipes. Or, go completely savory and make a chocolate mole to slather over corn tortillas and marinated chicken. In the end, Valentine’s Day is exactly what you make it; don’t limit your love, and certainly don’t limit your love of chocolate. Get out of the box, and take your chocolate with you. Your soul deserves it.

Beat the Winter Blues

I Love Baking

Beat the Winter Blues with Baking

When the temperature hits single digits and the snow piles up, where are many people likely to spend their days? Under the covers hibernating, of course!

Here at Clabber Girl we think there are better ways to spend the winter days. Sure the sun sets earlier and the wind chill is absurdly low, but that doesn’t mean you have to hunker down and disappear. There are plenty of warm and cozy ways to enjoy these colder months. Want to beat the winter blues? It’s time to get baking.

Host a Brunch Party
Move over breakfast! Get out of the way lunch! Make way for the newest craze in group dining – brunch! This melding of meals has risen to new and creative heights. Hosting brunch is a fabulous way to stay social during the cold winter months. Invite your friends over for a casual and cozy early afternoon brunch. Let the festivities start by gathering your nearest and dearest around these amazing Banana Crunch Streusel Muffins:

Ingredients:
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
2 teaspoons Davis Baking Powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup mashed bananas (about 2-3 bananas)
1 egg, slightly beaten
1/2 cup milk
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans

Streusel Topping:
1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans
3 tablespoons brown sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
Instructions

Throw a Game Night
Nothing heats up the cold winter nights like the fire of friendly competition. Game nights are a great way to get friends and families together to relax and reconnect. Even though the games take center stage, the menu is just as important. You’ll likely have a variety of tastes and preferences, so to be sure that the pickiest eaters are satisfied will take a little planning. Finger foods are best, as people tend to graze during these kinds of social events. Clabber Girl’s mouth-watering Good Ole Fried Chicken is a guaranteed crowd pleaser. For your vegetarian friends, you can fry up a variety of vegetables with our deep fry batter recipe.

Get the Girls Over
Time flies, especially during the winter months when the days are shorter and our calendars more packed with holidays and family responsibilities. One of the best ways to beat the winter blues is to kick the menfolk out and gather your best girlfriends for a night of cocktails, food and friendship.  Nothing says girls night like sinfully delicious chocolate treats. We recommend Chocolate Lovers Brownies or Chocolate Cherry Cookies.

Okay, so the weather outside may, in fact, be frightful, but that doesn’t mean that life during winter can’t be delightful. With the right attitude, you can build lasting memories surrounded by friends and the savory scents of cozy comfort foods.

50 State Cookies

 

State CookiesCrank up the ovens, break out those mixers and find the baking sheets… it’s cookie time. And if you’re still in a bind about which cookie to take to the holiday exchange this weekend, we’ve got you covered with 50 of the most unique cookies from the United States. Whether you stick to your state’s most prized cookie or try one from the opposite coast, these 50 state cookies are bound to be crowd-pleasers!

To find out what cookie matches your personality, take our cookie quiz!

Alabama: Alabama Cookies – This cookie has a little crunch both from the pecans and the rice crisp cereal. The cookie also has oats, so we find this a totally acceptable breakfast food.

Alaska: Wilderness Lodge Oatmeal Cookies – Alaska goes a little rogue from the traditional cowboy cookie recipe by adding some raisins. Any dried fruit will work as a substitute.

Arizona: Arizona Chocolate Chip Cookies – Lots of shredded coconut make this more than just your plain ol’ chocolate chip cookie, adding a little extra sweetness.

Arkansas: Almond Macaroon Cookies – With more than one cup of almonds, these cookies are more than just a little nutty. Enjoy with a fruity compote and you’re golden.

California:  Avocado Chocolate Chip Cookies – You read that right. These cookies have a little green in them. But avocados are good for you, so go ahead and treat yourself to a couple more!

Colorado: Cowboy Cookies – Cookies made especially for cowboys. And anyone else who enjoys oats, chocolate and walnuts in their cookies.

Connecticut: Spice Cookies – These cookies are sweet with a zip of extra flavor. It makes sense coming from a state known as the Nutmeg State.

Delaware: Strawberry Shortcake Cookies – Strawberries and cream are the theme of these sugary shortcakes. What could go wrong?

Florida:  Key Lime Cookies – It’s no secret that Floridians love their key limes. So we’re not surprised they add them to their cookie dough, too!

Georgia: Peaches and Cream Oatmeal Cookies – If there weren’t peaches in this state’s favorite cookie, it would be a crime! And the white chocolate chips? They’re just bonus flavor.

Hawaii: Hawaiian Cookie Balls – The crushed pineapple and coconut give these cookie balls the Hawaiian flair we all know and love.

Idaho: Potato Chip Cookies – Apparently in Idaho, potatoes have a place in every recipe. But don’t worry, this cookie has all of the sweet stuff, too—cocoa, peanut butter, coconut and chocolate chips.

Illinois: Date-Nut Cookies – If your family is a little nutty, these might be the perfect cookies to serve them.

Indiana: No Bake Cookies – No baking is required, just patience is as you wait for these cookies to cool. Can you resist the temptation?

Iowa: Iowa City Oatmeal Cookies – This isn’t just your any oatmeal cookie. With whole wheat flour, chocolate chips, walnuts and wheat cereal, these cookies cater to all you whole grain lovers.

Kansas: Amish Cookies – Standard sugar cookies with a twist— a hearty amount of powdered sugar.

Kentucky: Brown Butter Bourbon Cookies – Kentucky and bourbon? A perfect pair.  The rich bourbon accentuates the flavors of butter and vanilla.

Louisiana: Citrus Shortbread Cookies – These cookies are just as jazzy as the state they come from.

Maine: Cranberry and Orange Cookies – The bright red color and a sweet glaze makes these cookies perfect for any occasion, but especially so during the holidays.

Maryland: Chocolate Crab Cake Cookies – Your guests will not be eating crab meat in their cookie. We may not understand the name, but we do understand the desire for a chocolate-y, coconut-y cookie!

Massachusetts: Chocolate Chip Cookies – When you’re home of the original chocolate chip cookie, why would any other cookie be your go-to?

Michigan: Cherry Chocolate Chunk Cookies – Chocolate and cherries? Michigan knows how to make some good cookies.

Minnesota: Brown Sugar Butter Cookies – Brown sugar, chocolate chips, and toffee bits. Yes, please!

Mississippi: Mississippi Mud Cookies – No mud in these cookies; just chocolate and yummy marshmallows.

Missouri: Missouri Cookies – Fifteen minutes is all that stands between you and a delicious dessert.

Montana: Huckleberry Cookies – You put huckleberries in salads and pancakes, so why not cookies?

Nebraska: Rubber Cookies – As it turns out, rubber is code for molasses, cinnamon, apples and all sorts of other spicy deliciousness.

Nevada: Spicy Oatmeal Raisin Cookies – In the words of chef Emeril Lagasse, “Let’s kick it up a notch!” These cookies are certainly the way to do it.

New Hampshire: Orange White Chocolate Chip Cookies – When it gets too wintery to eat a creamsicle, put the flavors in a warm cookie instead.

New Jersey: Oatmeal Cranberry Cookies – Beautiful and bright, kind of like your holiday decor.

New Mexico: Bizcochitos (Biscochitos) – These state-recognized cookies have a little kick of flavor from anise seeds and brandy.

New York: Black and White Cookies – Famous in NYC, these cookies are bold and dramatic. Perfect for cookie lovers who can’t decide if they favor vanilla or chocolate icing

North Carolina: Sweet Potato Breakfast Cookies – A little pumpkin pie spice and maple syrup make these sweet potatoes even sweeter. And you can eat them for breakfast.

North Dakota: Honey Whole Wheat Cookies – For the grain lovers of the world, this one’s for you.

Ohio: Cappuccino Flat Cookies – We approve of any cookie that has coffee in it.

Oklahoma: Pecan Pie Cookies – Pecan pie is a favorite in Oklahoma, but pecan pie cookies are just genius.

Oregon: Hazelnut Cookies – Hazelnut coffee is good, but hazelnut cookies? Even better!

Pennsylvania: Chocolate Chip Cookies – You share a home state with Hershey, so this choice is obvious.

Rhode Island: Espiros – With only four ingredients, you can whip these up in no time.

South Carolina: Benne Wafers – Covered in sesame seeds, these cookies have a perfect, toasty crunch.

South Dakota: Triple the Ginger Cookies – One cookie equals three gingerbread men!

Tennessee: Tennessee-Style Marshmallow Cookies – Cookies with a marshmallow center and dipped in chocolate. What’s not to love?

Texas: Fritos Cookies – Drizzle peanut butter, corn syrup, and sugar over corn chips, and you’ve got a cookie.

Utah: Squash Cookies – Put this on your kids’ plate, and they may just eat their veggies. Especially when disguised in sweet cinnamon and nutty pecans.

Vermont: Maple Syrup Cookies – Maple syrup is a state staple!

Virginia: Candied Lemon Ginger Cookies – Don’t even try to resist this combination of lemon and ginger.

Washington: Apple Peanut Butter Cookies – Our favorite fruit all wrapped up in a tasty treat.

West Virginia: Ginger and Molasses Cookies – Warm, comforting flavors for the holiday season.

Wisconsin: Cheddar Cheese Cookies – With only three ingredients, these cookies are quick and simple, not to mention savory!

Wyoming: Wyoming Whopper Cookies – These peanut butter, oats, and raisin-filled cookies are enjoyed most after a long day hiking in the woods.