brownies

Bready or Not Guest: K. Bird Lincoln with Spicy Mocha Chocolate Mochi Cake

Posted by on Oct 16, 2018 in Blog, Bready or Not, brownies, cake, chocolate, guest recipe | 0 comments

I’m excited to welcome author K. Bird Lincoln with a special Bready or Not guest post! I’ve read over 130 urban fantasies and it’s hard to wow me these days, but the first book in her Portland Hafu series was a delight. She’s here today to celebrate the release of her second book, Black Pearl Dreaming, with a multicultural chocolate cake.

Plus, you can enter a Rafflecopter giveaway for her first book, Dream Eater! Read the recipe, and you might win yourself a great book to pair with this special chocolate cake.


The Portland Hafu Urban Fantasy series features a Japanese American young woman named Koi. She finds out her father isn’t entirely human and has to battle evil professors and dragons. The second in the series, Black Pearl Dreaming, has Koi traveling to Japan to seek answers for her father’s mental decline.

Chocolate is a huge part of Koi’s world. Like really important. So important that when love interest, Kitsune trickster Ken, wants to apologize for getting her in trouble in Tokyo, he gives her Oregon Chocolatier Dagoba’s Xocolatl Chocolate bar, invoking rosy childhood memories of the only chocolate Koi’s father ever deigned to consume.

So Xocolatl, possibly “bitter water” from the Mayan language, is the flavor I thought I’d play with for this recipe. Drawing on Koi’s happa haole heritage (she’s Japanese on her father’s side and Caucasian-Hawaiian on her mother’s) I thought it fitting to turn Hawaiian Butter Mochi into an homage to my favorite Oregon Chocolatier.

Butter mochi isn’t the same thing at all as Japanese mochi celebrated at New Year’s and used in making daifuku. Butter mochi is a Hawaiian cake incorporating Mochi flour (sweet rice flour or glutinous rice flour not to be confused with ye olde plain rice flour) milk, and butter to make a squishy, bouncy, chewy rich cake like deliciousness.

Don’t be scared off by the mochi flour. All the rest of the ingredients in this are pretty easy to get, and I even found Mochiko Flour (Koda Farms Brand) at my local Hy-Vee grocery store here in the Southeastern Prairie of Minnesota in the Asian Foods section. And of course, you can order Mochiko on Amazon.

This is Hawaiian soul food with a spicy chocolate twist, y’all. One bite, and you’ll be hooked, I promise.


 

Bready or Not Guest Recipe: BLACK PEARL DREAMING Spicy Mocha Chocolate Mochi Cake from K. Bird Lincoln

This recipe inspired by K. Bird Lincoln’s Portland Hafu Urban Fantasy series combines traditional Japanese and Hawaiian ingredients for a delicious result! Mochiko Flour isn’t hard to get in grocery stores worldwide and can also be ordered online.

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 3/4 cup dark chocolate chips
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1 (16oz) box Mochiko Flour (sweet or glutinous rice flour)
  • 2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 cup cacao powder
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs
  • 12 oz coconut milk
  • 1 1/2 cup milk (if you don’t mind the sugar, use 1 cup condensed milk)
  • Cayenne pepper to taste (I used 1/4 tsp)
  • Cinnamon to taste (I used 1 Tb)

Grease or insert parchment paper into a 9×13 pan.

Melt the butter and chocolate together. Mix in sugar and vanilla. In a different bowl, mix Mochiko flour, cacao powder, baking powder, cinnamon, and cayenne. Beat in 1/2 of the Mochiko flour mixture, eggs, and coconut milk. Add in another 1/2 of the Mochiko flour mixture, 11/2 cup milk and beat until all flour and milk is added and mixed in until smooth.

Pour into pan and cook at 350 deg F for 45-55 minutes.

Let cool completely. Cut with a plastic knife or wet your knife between cuts.

 


 

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Koi visits Japan looking for answers and instead is forced to make an impossible choice.

With the help of powerful new friends, Koi defeated her dragon enemy in Portland. Now, no longer able to deny her dream-eating powers or the real reason for her father’s mental decline, she flies to Tokyo with her new Kitsune love, Ken, and the trickster Kwaskwi, seeking answers. But secrets from Ken’s past and Kind politics threaten to unravel their newfound trust and someone in Tokyo is desperate to kidnap a Baku. Koi must untangle a long history of pain and deceit in order to save her father, an imprisoned dragon, and herself.

“I absolutely got sucked in by the way several mythologies were mixed with modern-day and WWII history to form a cool, surprising, and action packed plot. ”
— Pat Esden, author of The Dark Heart and Northern Circle Coven series.

“In Black Pearl Dreaming, Koi is a delightfully watchable heroine in way over her head. She struggles to figure out whom to trust, where she can get good coffee, and what exactly she should do about this enormous sleeping dragon, in this fast paced paranormal intrigue set
in a vividly detailed contemporary Japan.”
— Tina Connolly, author of Ironskin and Seriously Wicked series.

World Weaver Press
Amazon
Barnes and Noble
iTunes/Apple iBooks
Kobo

K. Bird Lincoln is an ESL professional and writer living on the windswept Minnesota Prairie with family and a huge addiction to frou-frou coffee. Also dark chocolate– without which, the world is a howling void. Originally from Cleveland, she has spent more years living on the edges of the Pacific Ocean than in the Midwest. Her speculative short stories are published in various online & paper publications such as Strange Horizons. Her medieval Japanese fantasy series, Tiger Lily, is available from Amazon. World Weaver Press released Dream Eater, the first novel in an exciting, multi-cultural Urban Fantasy trilogy set in Portland and Japan, in 2017 and will release the sequel, Black Pearl Dreaming, October 2018. She also writes tasty speculative fiction reviews on Amazonand Goodreads. Check her out on Facebook, join her newsletterfor chances to win chocolate and ebooks, or stalk her online at kblincoln.com

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Bready or Not: Pop Tart-Layered Brownies

Posted by on Jun 27, 2018 in Blog, Bready or Not, brownies, chocolate | 1 comment

These brownies are what happened after I bought a box of Cookies & Crème Pop Tarts for my son. He didn’t like them.

Bready or Not: Pop Tart-Layered Brownies

Well, darn. I can’t eat them myself. I didn’t want them wallowing in my pantry forever.

Bready or Not: Pop Tart-Layered Brownies

Therefore, I decided to use up the remaining packets by baking them into brownies. The layered technique works out well with Oreos, after all!

Bready or Not: Pop Tart-Layered Brownies

Turns out, Pop Tarts are fantastic baked into brownies. They are thinner than Oreos, and meld more with the surrounding dough. The mild Oreo-like taste still shines through.

Bready or Not: Pop Tart-Layered Brownies

Plus, the resulting brownie isn’t quite as dense. Just in case you aren’t in the mood for brick-like brownies.

Bready or Not: Pop Tart-Layered Brownies

The original recipe is from King Arthur Flour. I rewrote it and added in the Pop Tarts and chocolate chips (because, why not?!).

Bready or Not: Pop Tart-Layered Brownies

I’ve only done the recipe with Cookies & Crème Pop Tarts, but I think this technique would be great with all kinds of Pop Tarts–try strawberry (frosted or not), or Peanut Butter, or Smores.

Bready or Not: Pop Tart-Layered Brownies

Plus, then you can tell people you had Pop Tarts for breakfast, and no one has to know it was encased in a brownie.

 

Bready or Not: Pop Tart-Layered Brownies

Bready or Not: Pop Tart-Layered Brownies

Layer Pop Tarts into a casserole dish-sized helping of brownies for a delicious change! Cookies & Crème results in a mild Oreo-like flavor, but try out other varieties, too.

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup cocoa powder, sifted
  • 2 cups white sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon espresso powder, optional but awesome
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup semisweet or milk chocolate chips
  • 3 packets (6 pieces) Cookies & Creme Pop Tarts, or other variety

Preheat oven at 350-degrees. Line a 9x13 pan with parchment paper or foil, and grease with butter or apply nonstick spray.

Stir together, in order, all of the ingredients up to the Pop Tarts. Dollop about half the dough in the prepared pan, and try to spread out as evenly as possible; the dough will be thick. Layer the Pop Tarts over the dough, breaking pieces as necessary to fit. Dollop the rest of the dough on top, and again, smooth out as much as possible.

Bake brownies for 25 to 30 minutes, until the middle passes the toothpick test. Cool completely before lifting the brownies onto a cutting board to slice up.

Store in a sealed container at room temperature, or freeze to make them last longer.

OM NOM NOM!

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Bready or Not: Gluten-Free Almond Flour Brownies

Posted by on Mar 21, 2018 in Blog, Bready or Not, brownies, chocolate, gluten-free, healthier | Comments Off on Bready or Not: Gluten-Free Almond Flour Brownies

I often get requests for more gluten-free sweets. Here you go. These brownies are so good, people won’t even know they lack gluten.

Bready or Not: Gluten-Free Almond Flour Brownies

They also happen to be grain-free. Just don’t give them to people who have almond allergies!

Bready or Not: Gluten-Free Almond Flour Brownies

These brownies are fast to assemble. The end result tastes like standard brownies. I didn’t find them super moist, but they were nice and chewy.

Bready or Not: Gluten-Free Almond Flour Brownies

They kept pretty well in a sealed container for several days, too. The cut edges dried out a bit, but they were still delicious.

Bready or Not: Gluten-Free Almond Flour Brownies

Here’s a tip for you: almond flour, because of its high fat content, can spoil. Keep it in the freezer! It won’t freeze solid but it will get clumpy. Hence my note in the ingredients list to sift the almond flour.

Bready or Not: Gluten-Free Almond Flour Brownies

Modified from King Arthur Flour.

 

Bready or Not: Gluten-Free Almond Flour Brownies

Bready or Not: Gluten-Free Almond Flour Brownies

These delicious brownies are gluten-free and grain-free, and they come together almost as fast as a box mix! Modified from King Arthur Flour.

  • 5 Tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 3/4 cups sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup cocoa powder, sifted
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cups almond flour, sifted
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder

Preheat oven at 350-degrees. Line an 8x8 or 9x9 pan with foil and apply butter or nonstick spray.

In the microwave, melt the butter in a medium-sized bowl. Stir in the sugar, salt, vanilla, cocoa, and eggs. Add in the almond flour and baking powder. Pour batter into the ready pan.

Bake for 33 to 38 minutes, until the top is set and the middle just passes the toothpick test. Let cool, then cut into blocks. Store at room temperature in a sealed container or freeze for later enjoyment.

OM NOM NOM!

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Bready or Not: Chewy Brownies

Posted by on Feb 14, 2018 in Blog, Bready or Not, brownies, chocolate | Comments Off on Bready or Not: Chewy Brownies

These are some seriously amazing brownies.

Bready or Not: Chewy Brownies

Chewy, fudgy, chocolaty, the type that makes you moan the second that flavor hits your tongue. Yeah.

Bready or Not: Chewy Brownies

I had to do a brownie recipe for Valentine’s Day. This recipe comes together super-fast, so maybe you have time to whip it up today instead of buying some overpriced not-so-good version at the store.

Bready or Not: Chewy Brownies

Because these brownies?

Bready or Not: Chewy Brownies

LOOK AT THEM.

Bready or Not: Chewy Brownies

LOOOOK.

Bready or Not: Chewy Brownies

I don’t think I need to say anything else.

Modified from Chewy Brownies in Martha Stewart Living, November 2016.

 

Bready or Not: Chewy Brownies

Bready or Not: Chewy Brownies

These classic, chewy brownies come together fast with the help of a microwave. The result is indulgent, chocolaty goodness.

  • 3/4 cup plus 2 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon espresso powder, optional
  • 7 Tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 7 ounces unsweetened or semisweet chocolate chips
  • 3 Tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature

Preheat oven at 350-degrees. Line an 8x8 or 9x9 baking pan with parchment paper and apply nonstick spray.

In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, salt, and espresso powder (if using). Set aside.

Place the butter, chocolate, and oil in a large microwave-safe bowl. Heat in short bursts, stirring well between each, until the chocolate is melted. Add both sugars and stir together. Whisk in the eggs until the batter is glossy and smooth.

Pour in the dry ingredients and mix until just combined. Pour batter into the prepared pan and smooth out the top.

Bake until the brownies pass the toothpick test in the middle, about 35 to 40 minutes. Let cool in pan for about 30 minutes, then lift the block out by the parchment to completely cool on a rack. Slice into bars. Keep stored in an airtight container.

OM NOM NOM!

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Bready or Not: Chocolate Almond Biscotti

Posted by on Jan 10, 2018 in Blog, Bready or Not, breakfast, brownies, chocolate, cookies | Comments Off on Bready or Not: Chocolate Almond Biscotti

Continuing the breakfast theme for the month, we now venture into the realm of chocolaty goodness with these Chocolate Almond Biscotti.

Bready or Not: Chocolate Almond Biscotti

These taste like brownies… brownies that are firm enough to dip into coffee or hot chocolate or tea or your waiting mouth.

Bready or Not: Chocolate Almond Biscotti

Almonds go wonderfully with chocolate–a lot of candy bars are proof of that–though they do complicate this recipe in one way. They get stuck on the knife blade when the biscotti are chopped apart.

Bready or Not: Chocolate Almond Biscotti

The good news is, the biscotti at still kind of soft then, so you can press them back together a bit–just don’t burn your fingers!

Bready or Not: Chocolate Almond Biscotti

I can’t say I mind that some chocolate crumbles and almond bits are left on the cookie sheet, either. Oh darn. Can’t let those go to waste.

Bready or Not: Chocolate Almond Biscotti

Do check out other biscotti featured on Bready or Not: Maple Walnut White Chocolate Biscotti and Snickerdoodle Biscotti.

Bready or Not: Chocolate Almond Biscotti

This new recipe was modified from the original at McCormick.

 

Bready or Not: Chocolate Almond Biscotti

Bready or Not: Chocolate Almond Biscotti

These easy-to-make biscotti taste like brownies! Almonds add a wonderful crunch and complementary flavor.

  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 4 ounces semi-sweet chocolate
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 1/4 cups white sugar
  • 2 eggs, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 cup whole almonds, coarsely chopped

Preheat oven to 325-degrees. Prepare a large baking sheet with parchment paper. In a medium bowl, mix the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt; set aside.

Melt the chocolate in the microwave, using short, careful bursts. Once it is melted, set aside to cool for a few minutes.

In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs followed by almond extract. Scrape in the melted chocolate. Gradually mix in the dry ingredients, and add the almonds last.

Divide the dough in half. Drop each half onto the ready cookie sheet with lots of space between them. Use a spatula to shape them into logs roughly four inches across, eight inches long, and about an inch high.

Bake 35 minutes, until the logs spring back when gently touched.

Cool on stove top for 10 minutes. Use a sharp, serrated knife to chop the logs into 1/2-inch thick slices. The almonds will likely get stuck on the blade and cause the biscotti to crumble some; the biscotti is still somewhat soft, so try to wedge almonds back in and reshape the sticks. Do take care, as they are hot!

Place the slices upright, if they will stay, or lay them on their sides. Bake for another 20 minutes, flipping them halfway, if necessary.

Allow the biscotti to cool and dry out for several hours before placing them into sealed containers.

OM NOM NOM!

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Bready or Not Original: Peppermint Oreo Truffle Brownies

Posted by on Nov 29, 2017 in Blog, Bready or Not, brownies, chocolate, oreo | Comments Off on Bready or Not Original: Peppermint Oreo Truffle Brownies

If you’ve ever had Oreo Truffles–those luscious bon-bons of pulverized Oreo encased in chocolate–you’ll love my original take, which is a heck of a lot easier and prettier, too.

Bready or Not Original: Peppermint Oreo Truffle Brownies

The original Oreo Truffles always irritate me because I can never get a nice, smooth chocolate covering on the balls. You’ll see what I mean next month when I feature a different take on such truffles.

Bready or Not Original: Peppermint Oreo Truffle Brownies

Therefore, I removed the balls from the equation. This recipe has a brownie base, topped with an Oreo-cream cheese mix, then topped with a ganache. Oreo crumbs and peppermint bits give it a showy finish.

Bready or Not Original: Peppermint Oreo Truffle Brownies

No dipping balls in chocolate for an hour. No mess everywhere. This recipe is easy-peasy.

Bready or Not Original: Peppermint Oreo Truffle Brownies

Plus, the cut-up bars will keep for as long as a week if they are sealed in the fridge. That makes them convenient to make-ahead for holiday gatherings… and lets you finish them off at your leisure afterward.

Bready or Not Original: Peppermint Oreo Truffle Brownies

You can use a number of different kinds of Oreos here, too. Mint Oreos are great, but regular Oreos are fine if you add some extra peppermint extract. You can use all-chocolate kinds of Oreos–even the new Thin Oreo version–but I don’t advise using Double Stuf. You do want a lot of cookie crumbs.

 

Bready or Not Original: Peppermint Oreo Truffle Brownies

Bready or Not Original: Peppermint Oreo Truffle Brownies

This Bready or Not original remakes traditional Oreo Truffles in a brownie bar form that’s a lot more convenient to make.

*Note that original or all-chocolate Oreos or even new Thin Oreos may be used; just add another 1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract to either the Oreo layer or top chocolate layer. However, don’t use Double Stuf. You want more cookie crumbs!

  • brownie base
  • 1 cup butter (2 sticks), softened
  • 2 cups white sugar
  • 4 eggs, room temperature
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp peppermint extract
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa, sifted
  • 1/2 tsp espresso powder, optional but awesome
  • 1 1/3 cups flour
  • Oreo layer
  • 1 package Cool Mint or Peppermint Oreos*
  • 8 ounce cream cheese (1 block), softened
  • topping
  • 10 to 12 ounces of chocolate (mint, semi-sweet, dark, or milk; add more peppermint extract if desired)
  • 1/4 cup crushed peppermint bits

Preheat oven at 350-degrees. Line a 9x13 pan with aluminum foil and coat with nonstick spray or butter well.

In a mixing bowl, cream together the butter and sugar. Add eggs, followed by the two extracts, salt, cocoa, and flour. Don't overbeat.

Pour batter into the prepared pan. Bake for 22 to 27 minutes. Cool completely.

While the brownies are cooling, make the Oreo truffle layer. Crush Oreos in a food processor or by putting them in a sealed gallon bag and smashing them with a rolling pin until rendered to crumbs.

Reserve 1/4 cup of Oreo crumbs for topping. Place the rest of the crumbs in a large bowl, and use a big spoon to mash the Oreos into the softened cream cheese until the color is consistently black.

Smooth the Oreo-cream cheese mix atop the cooled brownies, using an offset spatula to get right to the edges.

To finish off the truffles, melt the chocolate either on the stovetop or in the microwave, and pour it over the Oreo layer. Smooth it out evenly. Immediately top with the reserved Oreo crumbs and peppermint bits.

Refrigerate until set, about 15 to 20 minutes. If it's too soft, and it will smear when cut; too hard, and it will crack. Use the foil to lift the brownies onto a cutting board, then slice into bars.

Store in a sealed container in the fridge, with waxed paper between the stacked layers. Keeps for at least a week.

OM NOM NOM!

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