Lazy Woman’s Chocolate Chip Cookies AKA Blondies

Tower of delicious-ness
Tower of delicious-ness

I know y’all, it’s Salad Mondays, I promised you a nutritious recipe of salad goodness that would inspire you to take on the world and your week.

But ALAS. It’s not to be because although I have a salad to present to you… it looks like this:

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In case you actually want to know what this is, it’s leftover chopped romaine, baked salmon with a simple lemon-garlic-oil dressing. Actually its crazy tasty. Just not very photogenic.

This past weekend I went to a barbecue and of course I had to take something because I have a food blog. If I didn’t take anything that would make me A) lose credibility and B) an asshole.

But I really didn’t want to take a potato salad, which is basically the easiest thing you can make for a group, and I didn’t want to make brownies because I recently have had some bad luck baking brownies. They’ve just been underdone and potentially salmonella causing.

What I really wanted was chocolate chip cookies.

What I really didn’t want was to spend my Saturday watching my oven.

Then I had a brainwave. Ages ago, when I was attempting to win host-of-the-year with my bruschetta bar themed brunch, I made this crazy easy batch of blondies for dessert. They took 5 minutes to prepare and 20 minutes to bake and my guests kept raving about them like no other. I, on the other hand, was on the fence about them. They seemed so normal.

BUT they had chocolate chips and were easy so I thought – why not?

This time I decided to kick it up a notch. I started with browned butter and added some crystallized ginger for some kick (I’m totally lying, I have a bag of leftover crystallized ginger that I bought, like, 3 months ago that I can’t finish).

It turned out so amazing and so soft that they were demolished at the barbecue.

The next morning I woke up wanting more and made a whole new batch, sans ginger and with coffee stirred into the batter.

My body protested these bad decisions but my mouth did not. Coz DAYAMN.

1/2 cup / 113 grams butter
3/4 cup light brown sugar
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup flour
1 tsp salt
3/4 cup chocolate chips (semi-sweet or bittersweet is fine)

Add-ins (optional):
1/3 cup crystallized ginger, chopped + 1/4 tsp ground ginger OR 1/2 Tbsp ground coffee

Preheat the oven to 175C/350F.

Generously butter an 8 by 8 square baking tin.

Cut the butter into even pieces and melt in a small saucepan over a medium fire. I suggest you whisk it so that it melts evenly.

Do this until the butter is light brown and smells nutty. This didn’t actually happen with me, but this is what the internet told me would happen. Mine just got very dark yellow and smelled quite good and coz I was scared of burning it, I stopped.

Wait for butter to cool till warm. Beat in the sugar until smooth.

Beat in the egg and vanilla. At this point, if using coffee, this is when you stir it in.

Stir in the flour and salt.

Stir in the chocolate chips and, if using crystallized ginger, this is when you stir it in.

Pour into prepared pan.

Bake for 20 to 25 minutes. I personally prefer 25 because otherwise I find the middle is a tad runny.

It’s SO good guys. I’m like swooning just writing this.

*Adapted from smitten kitchen.

Ginger version
Ginger version
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I make ugly food & it TASTES SO GOOD: Vol II

My first ugly food post is actually the most popular post on my blog EVER. It got 105 views which let’s face it is, pretty paltry and in all honesty it only got there because Shutterbean linked to me. THANK GOD FOR HER.

In a bid to replicate my early success in a time of complete creative drought (I find that I’m mostly really concerned about what lipstick color I should buy) that I thought I would copy an old post.

Like always, I’ve been cooking up a storm and it’s been good, but it really hasn’t looked good. AKA I haven’t bothered styling it.

Here’s what I’ve been cooking and enjoying these past two weeks! Bon Appétit!

Bonkers Awesome Mushroom and Onion Shells and Cheese Joy The Baker

The minute I saw this recipe on Joy’s blog I had to make it. However the amount of cheese and butter held me back knowing that really eating this could in no way be classified as healthy or good for you. Still I made it (Sans Gruyere – which I will use next time) and not only was it an awesome dinner, it was an awesome lunch to take into work. Too bad it really looks nothing like the original.

Strawberry and Spinach Salad with Quinoa and Goat CheeseCookie and Kate

I don’t really impulse food shop because I have a set amount of things I eat in a day and at certain times (5 o’clock apple – everyday!).* So when I do buy something out of the ordinary it generally causes a lot of panic and my mind immediately tries to slot it into my routine. This is what happened when I recently bought some cheap strawberries. I don’t have the calorie bandwith or time to eat strawberries but I had to eat dinner, so I made this salad and added some grilled chicken and was good to go! Was it good? Ish.

Spicy Sweet Potato and Coconut Soup – All Recipes

Honestly, All Recipes? I know, how very 2000 of me. But seriously this recipe, which I stumbled across after typing in “sweet potato” and “coconut milk” into Google, was actually AMAZING. Make it and dunk in some udon, veggies and some silken tofu and you’ve got A MEAL my friends.

Big Clusters Maple Cinnamon Chocolate Chip Granola – Averie Cooks

I make granola from time and time and it’s always vaguely healthy. This time I didn’t want to do healthy – I wanted to do chock full, can’t even pretend this is good for you granola. Because sometimes you want to. Sometimes you want to be bad – and then feel good – and then feel obese. Because really this is what happened when I made this granola. And honestly – check out the photography in the original post and drool because it is oh-so-good.

*If you think this is strange and weird and you are still my friend then you obviously think this is a charming quirk of mine and we need not discuss this further.

Chocolate Chip (and then some) Cookies

Chocolate Chip (and then some) CookiesIt’s been awhile cool kids!

This is because I haven’t been cooking anything particularly photogenic. Ok I lie, I have been, I’ve just been too lazy to actually photograph ANY of it. Please don’t make me.

I did however find the time to finally make these cookies that I promised I would make the day I saw them on i am a food blog.

This recipe is unique because it’s sort of a normal chocolate chip cookie but then it’s not because it’s got BLUEBERRIES in it and there’s COCONUT in it and OATMEAL and CHOCOLATE (ofcourseduh) – that I had to make it and see if all these things make it a superior cookie.

So I’m gonna level with you. It wasn’t a superior cookie. In fact the blueberries didn’t pop (in the flavor sense) in the way that I thought it would.

But guess what? It was a delicious, wholesome cookie, that really hit the spot. It tasted like childhood (at least, white people’s childhoods) and goodness.

Which is why I would make it again, and swap out the dried blueberries for raisins and white sugar for brown. But see, I would make it again.

New Mixer from my brother!
New Mixer from my brother!

These cookies – and everything I cook henceforth – was made possible by this amazing mixer gifted to me by my brother for my recent birthday 😀

Makes 18 medium sized cookies

1/2 cup butter, room temperature
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup white sugar
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 + 1/8 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup rolled oats
1/3 cup desiccated coconut
1/3 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/3 cup dried blueberries

Preheat the oven to 175C/350F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugars together until light and fluffy.

Add the egg and mix well. Beat in the vanilla.

In another bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt.

Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture and mix until just incorporated.

Add in the rolled oats, coconut, chocolate and blueberries. Stir until combined.

Form the dough into small balls and squish them into the shape you want your cookie to be – they will not spread much.

Place them on the baking sheet. Make sure they are well spaced.

Bake until golden brown about 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool for five minutes before cooling on a wire rack/tray.

Chocolate Chip (and then some) Cookies

*Adapted, barely, from i am a food blog.

**These taste better the day after baking or the day after that 🙂

Banana, Chocolate & Coffee Muffins

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These muffins were almost healthy.

They were supposed to be made with whole-wheat flour. But do you know what happens to whole-wheat flour when you leave it in your pantry and then open it months later because you’ve finally found a recipe that calls for it? It becomes a seething mass of weevil infested powder.

So last night this happened:

Doo-doo-doo I’m opening the Lock-Lock container that holds the flour. Oh man, an ant got in. Wait, there are ants all over. WAIT THAT’S A LOT OF ANTS.

“HOI! HOI! HOI! WHAT is THIS??? HELP!!!”

“Err… I don’t think those are ants…”

“WHAT is THIS??? HOW did they GET IN? This is a LOCK-LOCK container! IS THE LOCK-LOCK CONTAINER BROKEN??”

“Um – I think those things come from the flour itself?”

“I HAVE to THROW this AWAY! I’m such an IDIOT! WHY DID I THINK I COULD KEEP FLOUR FOR THIS LONG?!!”

As you can probably tell I’m a little melodramatic.

BUT I’m also a good problem solver. And have been baking long enough to know that hey – just use the white flour Dini. Just use the white flour.

And guess what? They turned out great. They are a sticky, banana-based muffin with just enough chocolate chips to keep you happy. Next time I would double the coffee concentration (same amount of water). I can barely taste it with the recipe below.

Makes 12

1 cup + 2 Tbsps + 2 tsps plain flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup + 2 Tbsps buttermilk (Sub with 1/2 cup milk + 1/2 Tbsp vinegar – let is sit for 5 mins then measure what you need)
1/4 cup + 2 Tbsps canola oil
1/2 cup banana, mashed
1/2 cup banana,diced
2 Tbsp strong coffee (1/2 tsp instant coffee granules dissolved in water and allowed to cool)
1 egg, small
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 cup maple syrup
1 Tbsp white sugar
1 Tbsp brown sugar
1/2 cup semi sweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 175C/350F. Line a 12 cup muffin tin.

Whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large bowl.

Combine the oil, buttermilk, mashed banana, coffee, vanilla, maple syrup, sugars and egg.

Whisk the wet ingredients together and pour over the dry ingredients. Mix.

Add diced banana and chocolate chips to batter, mix until just combined. The original recipe says to not overmix but I AIN’T GOT TIME FOR THAT. And it turned out fine so…

Spoon the batter into the muffin pan.

Bake for 18 to 20 minutes or until a toothpick/skewer inserted comes out clean.

*Adapted from The Vanilla Bean Blog.
**Photography courtesy of Hoi Yee (paper_shins)

Banana, Coconut and Chocolate Chip Squares (in a round pan)

Recently I’ve been on a health kick because BASICALLY I cut off all my hair and I’m terrified of having short hair and being unfit so… I eat salads ALL. THE. TIME. NOW.

Except when I’m eating baklava at Overdoughs.

Or when I’m baking these squares because I was so inspired by Top With Cinnamon.

Sigh. The world is clearly against me.

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6 Tbsps / 80 gm unsalted butter
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup maple syrup (I didn’t have exactly 1/4 cup so I added 1 Tbsp of brown sugar and it worked fine, adjust for baking time)
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup mashed, ripe banana
1 cup all purpose flour
1/3 cup shredded coconut
1/3 cup semi-sweet chocolate chipsPreheat oven to 180 C/350 F.Place the butter into a round 8-inch tin put in the oven just till the butter melts.

Swirl the melted butter around in the tin to grease it and then pour the butter into a bowl.

To the bowl of melted butter, add the sugar, syrup, salt, egg, vanilla and banana.

Whisk the ingredients together.

Add the baking soda, flour, and coconut and whisk.

Stir in the chocolate chips. Full disclosure – I added more than 1/3 cup of chocolate chips.

Pour the mixture into the greased tin and spread out in an even layer.

Bake for 20 to 25 minutes until golden brown.

Leave to cool for 5 minutes before serving.

*The original recipe says they are blondies but to me the texture was really like a hearty breakfast bar – hence my renaming!

Coconut Chocolate Chip Granola

Too close?
Too close?
Still too close?
Still too close?
We all good now?
We all good now?

I wanted granola and this is what I had leftover in my fridge/pantry/life. BOOM! Awesomeness in a bowl.

2 cups rolled oats
1 1/2 Tbsps cocoa powder
1 tsp salt
1 pinch ground cinnamon (I think this helps bring out the taste of the chocolate)
3 Tbsps + 1 tsp coconut oil
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup light brown sugar
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/3 cup dessicated/flaked coconut
2/3 cup chocolate chips (I use Ghirardelli 60% Cacao Bittersweet Chocolate Baking Chips and it makes ALL the difference)

Preheat oven to 175 degrees celcius. Line a baking sheet with foil (other people say parchment paper, I don’t have any).

In a bowl mix the dry ingredients (oats, cocoa powder, salt and cinnamon).

In another bowl mix and then whisk the wet/binding ingredients (coconut oil, maple syrup, light brown sugar, vanilla extract).

Pour the wet ingredients over the dry ingredients and stir to combine. I usually use a spoon and then my hands.

Pour the mixture onto the baking sheet. Spread it out evenly.

Bake for 10 minutes, then remove from the oven and flip and add the coconut. Bake for another 10 minutes. It should smell like it’s done. I know these instructions are subjective.

Remove from the oven and when still hot pour chocolate chips over. Carefully mix with a spoon so that the chocolate chips melt a bit.

Wait until its completely cool before storing in a container. Should keep fresh for a week.

*I owe my granola making prowess entirely to Shutterbean and base my granola recipe on her Nutty Cranberry Granola. However I did adjust baking times and I find that you really just have to watch the granola and figure out what temperature and time works for your oven.

Overnight Oats (2)

My breakfast this morning (actually this was my breakfast on Wednesday but this is a LIE all food bloggers tell) was this – Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Overnight Oats. And it was TERRIBLE.

overnight oats

This is mainly because I, like an idiot, decided I didn’t need to use a sweetener because HEY the chocolate chips would be enough. They weren’t. But I did use chia seeds and they were pretty kickass and REALLY filling and apparently the INTERNET says its good for me? Ok!

1/2 cup rolled oats
1 cup soy milk
1 Tbsp chia seeds (I used these chia seeds and bought it from iHerb – use my promo code at checkout if you’re a first time customer)
1-2 tsps honey/maple syrup (please use a sweetener – otherwise you WILL be sad)
dash of vanilla extract
2 Tbsps chocolate chips
1 Tbsp peanut butter

Mix oats, milk, chia seeds, honey/maple syrup and vanilla extract the night before. Put in a container (small plastic Tupperware should work) in the fridge.

The next morning, stir and top with chocolate chips and peanut butter.

Eat.

* Chia seeds have protein and are awesome and apparently will make you a successful human being.
** My overnight oats are quite liquidy. You can play around with the consistency if you want it less liquidy. I understand that this is obvious advice. But logic may not be your strong point.