There are a lot of things (especially sweets) that Chris will eat and enjoy, but one thing that tops them all is toffee. Especially around the holidays. Not so much because it is the holidays, but more because you tend to find more options with different stores (Trader Joes for example) that bring out these specialties around November and December. I am also always on the lookout for good toffee recipes.
My mom used to make toffee, caramels, hard candy, divinity, and many other types of candies during the holidays. Often they were as gifts to friends, teachers, especially since we could not afford to purchase gifts, this was her way to share with others. I, however, do not have her toffee recipe, and well Chris is picky. So this one looked easy enough, and these days I need easy (I am 39 weeks preggers today)!
I will say it is super sweet – if you make it, add more pretzels for a better salty/sweet mixture!
Salty Sweet White and Dark Chocolate Toffee Bark
14 ounces dark chocolate
¾ cup broken pretzel pieces
¾ cup Heath toffee pieces
8 ounces white chocolate
1. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
2. Melt the dark chocolate in the microwave and stir until smooth. Stir in ½ cup of the pretzel pieces and ½ cup of the toffee pieces saving the rest for later. Spread the mixture on the prepared baking sheet. Refrigerate for a minimum of 30 minutes.
3. Melt the white chocolate and stir until smooth (just like the dark chocolate). Remove the baking sheet from the refrigerator and spread the white chocolate on top of the hardened dark chocolate layer. Sprinkle the remaining pretzel and toffee bits and press them gently into the white chocolate. Return the pan to the refrigerator for an hour.
4. Cut or break the bark into pieces and eat up (or share if you’re nice).
My mom used to make a Chocolate Chess Pie when I was a kid and it was so easy. It had 4-5 ingredients and I absolutely loved it. As you can see from a Random Recipe post earlier this year, I have continued to try to recreate her recipe – with not the best of luck. Nothing seems to taste like I remember. I think Chris is bored with my trying, however, since I am not one to quit — I am not giving up. This is my most recent attempt of trying another Chocolate Chess Pie recipe.
Chris still is not super excited about the result — he felt it was too much work for the taste, but I think this is the recipe that gets closest to the taste of what I remember. A few caveats:
The crust ingredients listed below made too much and we had to throw a bunch of it away. To me, a Chocolate Chess Pie should always be served warm with vanilla ice cream.
Oh – ENJOY!
15 graham crackers
1/3 cup granulated sugar
8 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
8 tablespoons unsalted butter
4 ounces semisweet baking chocolate, chopped
1 tablespoon all purpose flour
1 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 large eggs plus 1 large egg white
Make the crust: Preheat oven to 350°F. Grind the graham crackers in a food processor until they are a fine crumb. Place in a bowl and stir in sugar and melted butter with a fork. Press into the bottom and up the sides of a 9″ or 10″ pie dish. Bake until firm, about 10 minutes.
Make the filling: Melt the butter with chocolate in a medium sized bowl in the microwave, heating on high in 30 second increments and stirring until the chocolate is melted and smooth.
Once the chocolate is melted, whisk in the flour, sugar, vanilla, and salt. Whisk in eggs and egg white until the mixture is smooth. Pour mixture into prepared crust. Bake until the top is puffed and filling is set in the center, 35-40 minutes. Let cool, serve at room temperature. Top with ice cream.
First time ever. I completely missed posting a blog yesterday. Blame it on pregnancy brain. Alas. I do have a great recipe to share with you today. You can see I am continuing my pumpkin theme. I cannot get enough, and since pumpkin eventually gives away to peppermint and egg nog, well, you have to take advantage while fall is upon us. Can you believe that Costco already has their peppermint pretzels? It is not even Halloween yet and we can already purchase favorite treats for Christmas. Will we soon be able to purchase Christmas treats in July?
This recipe is a must try. It is, dare I said it? (Moist!) Yummy, and the perfect treat. Crunchy on the outside, soft on the inside. We actually had it for dinner last night with tomato soup. It is worth trying this fall.
Pumpkin Honey Beer Bread
2 cups sugar
1 cup canola oil
2/3 cup beer (at room temperature)
1/4 cup honey
4 large eggs
1 (15-oz.) can pumpkin
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons table salt
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
Shortening (to grease pan)
1. Preheat oven to 350°. Beat first 4 ingredients at medium speed with electric mixer until well blended. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating just until blended after each addition. Add pumpkin, and beat at low speed just until blended.
2. Whisk together flour and next 4 ingredients in a medium bowl until well blended. Add flour mixture to pumpkin mixture, and beat at low speed just until blended. Divide batter between 2 greased (with unsalted butter) and floured 9 x 5 loaf pans.
3. Bake at 350° for 55 minutes to 1 hour or until a knife inserted in center comes out clean. Cool bread in pans on a wire rack 10 minutes. Remove from pan, and cool until you’re ready to devour it!
Apples and bananas have been fruits that my pregnant belly has been wanting. Over the summer in the earlier part of my pregnancy I wanted berries (specifically blackberries and raspberries). Now that we are easing into fall and berries are no longer local, I have wanted apples. Over the holiday weekend we decided to try this Apple Fries recipe. They were definitely delicious, but in my opinion have two flaws. They take too much time to make than they are worth AND they made the house smell for days. That does not mean it will happen to you, but currently our range does not actually ventilate outside and thus the smell permeated throughout our house. We had to open windows and light candles for a few days to get rid of the apple fry smell.
2 large Granny Smith Apples, peeled and sliced into wedges
¼ cup Cornstarch
Cinnamon Sugar Topping:
¼ cup sugar
1 Tablespoon cinnamon
½ cup heavy whipping cream
1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
Mix the cinnamon and sugar in a small bowl and set aside.
Heat enough oil to cover the bottom of your pan on high heat.
Toss apple wedges in cornstarch, coating both sides.
Place just enough of the coated apple wedges into the hot oil to make a single layer and fry on each side for 2 to 3 minutes. They should be just golden brown. Repeat with the rest of the apple wedges.
Transfer the cooked apples onto a cookie sheet lined with paper towels and drain for a few minutes.
Toss in the cinnamon sugar mixture and serve.
Whip the heavy cream and vanilla to use as a dip. Yum!
You know when you have the most amazing meal? It is memorable. They way it tastes, smells, and just hits the spot. Mmm. Sometimes a meal is so so, and other times they just suck. I am not going to tell you the below recipe is amazing. It was very good. These days though how long something takes to make outweighs how amazing something is, as our time is more and more precious. For it taking over 45 minutes, I think you can get more bang for your buck with something a bit different. Having shared all that, I will tell you — the best part is the Garlic Brown Butter Breadcrumbs. The topping made this recipe.
So if you have the time, try this recipe. What I would like to do is take some of the good parts and find a simple and quick way to make something similar. Do you have any ideas?
Fontina and Spinach Baked Eggs with Garlic Brown Butter Breadcrumbs [Adapted from How Sweet Eats]
3 oz fresh spinach
4 oz fontina cheese, freshly grated
4 large eggs
2 T heavy cream or half and half
1/4 tsp pepper
1/8 tsp sea salt
1 T unsalted butter
1/2 minced garlic clove
1/4 cup panko bread crumbs
chopped fresh herbs for topping
2 large pieces of cracked wheat sourdough (toasted)
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Spray a 9×9 baking dish with nonstick spray.
Place fresh spinach evenly in the bottom of the baking dish. Sprinkle about 1/2 of the grated cheese over the spinach. Place the 4 eggs over top spaced evenly. Sprinkle the salt and pepper, then add the heavy cream — drizzled over the top. Sprinkle the remaining cheese. Bake in the oven for 18-20 minutes. Cook longer if you want the yolks cooked through.
While the dish is baking, add butter to a small saucepan over medium heat and whisk constantly. Once it starts to brown, remove from heat and keep whisking for 30 seconds. Add the garlic and whisk some more. Add in the panko and fresh herbs and stir until panko is coated.
When the baked eggs are done, remove from the oven and cover with panko mixture. Serve immediately over buttered toast.