chocolate

Bready or Not Original: Millionaire Shortbread

Posted by on Jan 8, 2020 in Blog, blondies, Bready or Not, british, chocolate | 0 comments

Millionaire Shortbread. Gorgeous. Delicious. A little bit of extra effort to make, but SO WORTH IT.

Bready or Not Original: Millionaire Shortbread

I wanted to concoct the best-possible Millionaire Shortbread. This involved strenuous testing of recipes. Much baking. Much reliance on test subjects (husband and his co-workers).

The resulting feedback? I wrote it down.
“This shortbread is enjoyed, and feared.”
“To call them excellent would be an insult to your wife.”

Bready or Not Original: Millionaire Shortbread

So yeah. The test subjects approved. I personally would rank this up there with my best all-time bakes, because it really combines the best of everything.

Bready or Not Original: Millionaire Shortbread

The shortbread layer is firm yet soft. THEN THAT CARAMEL. It is thick, luscious, and sweet. The chocolate provides the perfect balance, especially with the help of some Maldon salt flakes.

Bready or Not Original: Millionaire Shortbread

Do note that the ganache needs to be semisweet chocolate, or an even darker variety. Milk chocolate is just too sweet against that thick caramel. I say that, and I usually prefer milk chocolate.

Bready or Not Original: Millionaire Shortbread

I wish I could say how long this keeps in the fridge, but my test subjects were a bit too voracious to provide perspective on that point.

 

Bready or Not Original: Millionaire Shortbread

This Millionaire Shortbread is pure rich indulgence, and so worth the extra effort to make!
Course: Dessert, Snack
Cuisine: British
Keyword: bars, chocolate, cookies
Author: Beth Cato

Ingredients

Shortbread Crust

  • 1 cup unsalted butter 2 cubes, softened
  • 1/3 cup white sugar
  • 1/3 cup light brown sugar packed
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

Caramel

  • 2 14-ounce cans sweetened condensed milk
  • 14 Tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 cup light brown sugar packed
  • 1/3 cup light corn syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Chocolate Ganache

  • 11 ounces semisweet chocolate chips
  • 4 Tablespoons unsalted butter 1/2 stick
  • Maldon sea salt flakes for top, optional

Instructions

Shortbread base

  • Preheat oven at 350-degrees. Line a 13x9 baking pan with aluminum foil and apply nonstick spray or butter.
  • In a large bowl, beat butter until creamy. Add both sugars and beat until light and fluffy. Follow up with the egg yolk and vanilla extract. Scrape bottom of bowl to make sure everything is incorporated.
  • Gradually work in flour along with the salt. Don't overmix. It should still be crumbly. Drop dough into prepared pan and compress into an even layer. (A piece of waxed paper and a heavy glass make this easier.)
  • Bake shortbread layer for 20 to 25 minutes, until edges are turning golden brown. Set pan aside to cool while the next layer is made.

Caramel

  • In a large saucepan at medium heat, stir together the condensed milk, butter, brown sugar, and corn syrup. Stir constantly as it rises to a boil. Immediately drop heat to low, and continue to stir nonstop for about 10 to 15 minutes, until mixture turns a deep caramel color and thickens up; watch out, the caramel can spit out of the pan at times!
  • Remove pot from heat and promptly stir in vanilla extract and salt.
  • Pour caramel over the shortbread, using an uneven spatula or knife if needed to smooth it into an even layer. Cool pan for several hours until it reaches room temperature, or set in fridge to chill.

Ganache topping

  • In a microwave-safe bowl (or, alternatively, on the stove top in a pot) melt together the chocolate chips and butter. Once it can be stirred smooth, pour over the caramel. Spread out into an even layer. If desired, sprinkle Maldon sea salt flakes over the top.
  • Chill in fridge to let chocolate harden for at least 30 minutes. Use foil to lift contents of pan onto a cutting board. Let chocolate warm again, just a touch, perhaps for 5 or 10 minutes, before slicing into bars (otherwise, the chocolate will crack rather than be sliced through).
  • Store bars in fridge with waxed paper between layers. Keeps for days.

OM NOM NOM!

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    Bready or Not Original: Quick Peanut Butter Chocolate Fudge

    Posted by on Dec 18, 2019 in Blog, Bready or Not, chocolate, fudge, gluten-free, no-bake dessert | 0 comments

     Holiday time can be all kinds of hectic, but if you need a sweet treat in limited time, this Quick Peanut Butter Fudge will be adored by all chocolate and peanut butter lovers!

    Bready or Not Original: Quick Peanut Butter Chocolate Fudge

    This thing literally comes together in under five minutes. Give it a couple hours to set in the fridge, and there you go. Plus, it keeps for weeks in the fridge (if you can make it last that long) and it can be frozen for ages.

    Bready or Not Original: Quick Peanut Butter Chocolate Fudge

    I love using walnuts in this fudge, but any nut will do. Can you make it without nuts? Sure, but I find that a little bit of crunch is great for texture. Some seeds could work in this, too, if you need to avoid an allergen (keeping in mind, this already includes peanut butter chips!).

    Bready or Not Original: Quick Peanut Butter Chocolate Fudge

    My husband had co-workers describe this fudge as “crack.” Consider yourself warned.

    Bready or Not Original: Quick Peanut Butter Chocolate Fudge

    I’ve shared a number of quick fudge recipes over the years. Here are some others to try out!

    Cookies and Milk Quick Fudge

    Five-Minute Spicy Mexican Fudge

    Quick Maple Cookie Fudge

    Quick Cake Batter White Chocolate Fudge

    Gingerbread Cookie Dough Fudge

    Oreo Fudge

    No-Bake Peanut Butter Pretzel Fudge

    Lemon Cake Batter Fudge

    Bready or Not Original: Quick Peanut Butter Chocolate Fudge

    Bready or Not Original: Quick Peanut Butter Chocolate Fudge

    This fudge come together in about 5 minutes thanks to the microwave, and results in a smooth fudge reminiscent of peanut butter cups. Cut the pieces small--they are decadent and addictive!
    Course: Dessert, Snack
    Keyword: chocolate, no bake, peanut butter, quick fudge
    Author: Beth Cato

    Equipment

    • 8x8 or 9x9 pan

    Ingredients

    • 1/4 cup unsalted butter
    • 10- ounce bag peanut butter chips 1 bag
    • 8- ounces semi-sweet chocolate chips about 3/4 bag
    • 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk
    • 1 cup walnuts or other nuts, chopped

    Instructions

    • Line a small square pan with foil and apply nonstick spray or butter.
    • In a large microwave-safe bowl, melt butter with a zap or two in microwave. Add peanut butter, chips, chocolate chips, and sweetened condensed milk. Heat in a couple 30-second bursts, stirring well between each, and continuing until the mixture is smooth. Fold in nuts.
    • Pour into prepared pan. Smooth out using an uneven spatula, taking fudge to edges and pressing down to remove any bubbles.
    • Chill in fudge for at least two hours. Use foil to lift onto cutting board for easy slicing. Store in a sealed container with waxed paper between the layers; keep in fridge as long as a month, or freeze for longer.

    OM NOM NOM!

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      Bready or Not Original: Cranberry-Orange Cookies

      Posted by on Nov 27, 2019 in Blog, Bready or Not, chocolate, cookies | 0 comments

      These Cranberry-Orange Cookies are packed with vivid, fresh flavor, and a sure way to brighten your day, whatever the season!

      Bready or Not Original: Cranberry-Orange Cookies

      The order of ingredients is important here. You take one orange and zest and juice it. The zest goes straight into the dough, while the juice is used to soak the dried cranberries.

      Bready or Not Original: Cranberry-Orange Cookies

      Not only does this plump up the desiccated berries, but it naturally amplifies their flavor, too. The tartness becomes stronger, in perfect complement to the citrusy freshness.

      Bready or Not Original: Cranberry-Orange Cookies

      Then, you add two tablespoons of the juice to the dough. The rest, do whatever with. It’s mighty tasty to drink!

      Bready or Not Original: Cranberry-Orange Cookies

      The white chocolate chips add sporadic sweetness to balance the tartness, and it goes so well with the orange flavor, too.

      Bready or Not Original: Cranberry-Orange Cookies

      Plus, these cookies are downright pretty on a holiday tray, packed as a gift, or eaten whenever, all the year long!

      Bready or Not Original: Cranberry-Orange Cookies

      These cookies boast of an incredibly fresh, fruity flavor, with just enough white chocolate chips to balance the tartness of the dried cranberries. Recipe makes 36 cookies using a tablespoon scoop.
      Course: Dessert, Snack
      Keyword: chocolate, citrus, cookies
      Servings: 36 cookies
      Author: Beth Cato

      Ingredients

      • 1 orange
      • 1 1/2 cups dried cranberries
      • 1 cup unsalted butter 2 sticks, softened
      • 1 cup white sugar
      • 1/2 cups brown sugar packed
      • 1 egg
      • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
      • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
      • 1/2 teaspoon salt
      • 1/2 cup white chocolate chips

      Instructions

      • Preheat oven at 375-degrees.
      • Zest then juice the orange. Place dried cranberries in bowl and pour orange juice over them, stir, then set aside to soak
      • In a large bowl, beat together butter and sugars. Add the egg. Stir in orange zest.
      • In a separate bowl, stir together the flour, baking soda, and salt. Gradually blend with butter mixture. Measure 2 tablespoons of orange juice from the bowl, and add to the dough. Drain off the rest of the orange juice (discard it or save it to drink) and add the dried cranberries and white chocolate chips to the dough. Combine.
      • Use a tablespoon scoop or spoon to space out dollops of dough on baking sheet; cookies will spread. Bake for 12 to 14 minutes, until cookies are golden and set. Let set on sheet for 5 minutes, then transfer to a rack to completely cool. Repeat with the next batch(es).
      • Store in a sealed container.

      OM NOM NOM!

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        Bready or Not: Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cake

        Posted by on Oct 23, 2019 in Blog, Bready or Not, cake, chocolate, pumpkin | 0 comments

        Halloween is about a week away. Let’s celebrate with a Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cake!

        Bready or Not: Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cake

        This is an honest-to-goodness cake, too, light and fluffy and topped with a just-thick-enough layer of frosting.

        Bready or Not: Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cake

        This cake melds the glorious powers of a spice cake with a chocolate cake, finding a medium that is happy indeed.

        Bready or Not: Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cake

        As with most of my baked goods, this was packed up and sent with my husband to work. I can report that this cake can be cut into squares and stored in containers with waxed paper between the layers. It traveled surprisingly well.

        Bready or Not: Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cake

        Most cakes are not that cooperative. I can’t even say how many times I’ve tried a recipe and mangled it when I’ve tried to portion it out to make it more portable. Those cakes don’t typically make it onto Bready or Not.

        Bready or Not: Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cake

        This one does… and not only is it cooperative for travel, but it’s also darn delicious.

        Modified from Taste of Home Desserts Magazine.

         

        Bready or Not: Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cake

        This light, fluffy cake combines all the goodness of spice cake and chocolate!
        Course: Dessert, Snack
        Keyword: cake, chocolate, pumpkin
        Author: Beth Cato

        Ingredients

        Cake

        • 1 1/4 cups pumpkin puree
        • 1 cup white sugar
        • 1/2 cup vegetable oil or canola oil
        • 2 large eggs
        • 1 cup all-purpose flour
        • 1 cup white whole wheat flour or whole wheat flour
        • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
        • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
        • 1/2 teaspoon salt
        • 1 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
        • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
        • 1/2 teaspoon ginger
        • 1/4 teaspoon cloves
        • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

        Frosting

        • 6 Tablespoons unsalted butter softened
        • 3 Tablespoons milk or half & half
        • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
        • sprinkle cloves
        • 1/3 cup baking cocoa sifted
        • 2 1/2 - 3 cups confectioners' sugar

        Instructions

        Making the cake

        • Preheat oven at 350-degrees. Line a 13x9 pan with foil and apply butter or nonstick spray.
        • In a large bowl, beat together the pumpkin puree, sugar, oil, and eggs. In a separate bowl, sift together the flours, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and spices. Gradually beat the dry mix into the wet. Fold in the chocolate chips.
        • Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until the center passes the toothpick test. Let cool to room temperature, or chill in fridge if desired.

        Frosting

        • In a large bowl, beat butter until creamy. Add in the milk, vanilla, and cloves. Slowly beat in the cocoa and the base amount of confectioners' sugar, adding more if needed to reach spreadable consistency. Cover the top of the cake. Slice within pan, or use foil to lift cake onto cutting board.
        • Store covered in the fridge.

        *OM NOM NOM!*

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          Bready or Not: Chocolate-Swirled Pumpkin Bars

          Posted by on Oct 9, 2019 in Blog, blondies, Bready or Not, brownies, chocolate, pumpkin | Comments Off on Bready or Not: Chocolate-Swirled Pumpkin Bars

          Chocolate-Swirled Pumpkin Bars. Because I will never feature enough iterations of this perfect pairing.

          Bready or Not: Chocolate-Swirled Pumpkin Bars

          Yeah, every year I do a new take (or a couple) on this lovely Voltron-saving-the-galaxy team-up between pumpkin and chocolate. You know why? Because it’s AWESOME. Like Voltron. With a lot less death and destruction.

          Bready or Not: Chocolate-Swirled Pumpkin Bars

          This recipe gets extra oomph from cream cheese, but by no means do these taste like cheesecake bars. Here, the cream cheese adds umami richness rather than straight-out cream cheese flavor.

          Bready or Not: Chocolate-Swirled Pumpkin Bars

          I was amazed by how thick these bars ended up. Really, these are more akin to cake than standard blondies or brownies.

          Bready or Not: Chocolate-Swirled Pumpkin Bars

          Bake these up and brighten someone’s day. You don’t need to summon up Voltron to save a person’s world. Sometimes, baked goods can do the trick.

          Bready or Not: Chocolate-Swirled Pumpkin Bars

          Need more pumpkin X chocolate OTP? Check out past posts on Bready or Not!

          Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bars
          Pumpkin Nutella Swirl Muffins
          Triple Chocolate Pumpkin Bundt Cake
          Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Shortbread
          Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread (2 loaves)

          Bready or Not: Chocolate-Swirled Pumpkin Bars

          This perfectly autumn recipe pairs pumpkin and chocolate with the richness of cream cheese to create thick, moist bars.
          Course: Dessert, Snack
          Keyword: bars, chocolate, cream cheese, pumpkin
          Author: Beth Cato

          Equipment

          • 15x10-x1 jelly roll pan

          Ingredients

          Pumpkin base layer

          • 2 cups all-purpose flour
          • 1 1/2 cups white sugar
          • 2 teaspoons baking powder
          • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
          • 1 teaspoon baking soda
          • 1/2 teaspoon salt
          • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
          • 4 eggs
          • 15 ounces pumpkin puree
          • 1 cup vegetable oil

          Chocolate swirl

          • 8 ounces cream cheese softened
          • 1/3 cup white sugar
          • 1 egg
          • 1 Tablespoon milk
          • 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

          Topping

          • 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

          Instructions

          Prepare the base layer

          • Preheat oven at 350-degrees. Line a jelly roll pan (15x10x1) with aluminum foil, making sure the edges are covered. Add nonstick spray or grease.
          • In a large bowl, stir together the flour, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, baking soda, salt, and cloves. Add the four eggs, the pumpkin, and oil. Pour into the prepared pan.

          Start the chocolate swirl

          • Microwave 1/2 cup of chocolate chips, zapping in short increments and stirring well between each pass, until it is melted. Set aside.
          • In a mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese with the sugar; it's okay if it's still a little lumpy. Follow up with the one egg, milk, and melted chocolate. Dollop the chocolate mixture atop the pumpkin batter. Use a narrow spatula or butter knife to swirl layers together in a marbled effect. Sprinkle the remaining chocolate chips on top.
          • Bake 25 to 30 minutes, until it looks puffed and the middle passes the toothpick test. Cool on a rack for at least an hour, then chill in fridge before cutting. This will make it easier to cut.
          • Use foil to lift onto a cutting board. Slice into bars then store chilled in a sealed container with waxed paper between stacked layers.

          OM NOM NOM!

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            Bready or Not: Fudgy Chocolate Gluten-Free Cake

            Posted by on Sep 25, 2019 in Blog, Bready or Not, brownies, cake, chocolate, gluten-free | Comments Off on Bready or Not: Fudgy Chocolate Gluten-Free Cake

            This incredible Fudgy Chocolate Cake is like a great big grown-up brownie.

            Bready or Not: Fudgy Chocolate Gluten-Free Cake

            While this can’t be said to be healthy, it IS gluten free, so makes for a wonderful treat for people with that dietary restriction.

            Bready or Not: Fudgy Chocolate Gluten-Free Cake

            It also keeps very well. I sliced it up and kept pieces stored in the fridge for over a week. They never dried out or lost flavor.

            Bready or Not: Fudgy Chocolate Gluten-Free Cake

            Even better, this cake can be frozen to last longer. Freeze slices on waxed paper and keep stored in a plastic container or freezer bag. Defrost in fridge when you want to indulge!

            Bready or Not: Fudgy Chocolate Gluten-Free Cake

            This cake is delicious by itself, but you could easily dress it up with fresh strawberries, cherries, or raspberries, and/or a scoop of vanilla ice cream–all of which are gluten-free as well, of course.

            Bready or Not: Fudgy Chocolate Gluten-Free Cake

            Modified from Allrecipes Magazine February/March 2015.

             

            Bready or Not: Fudgy Chocolate Gluten-Free Cake

            This gluten-free chocolate cake includes basic ingredients and is fast to make, to delicious results. The cake keeps well in the fridge and can be frozen as well.
            Course: Dessert, Snack
            Keyword: cake, chocolate, gluten free
            Author: Beth Cato

            Ingredients

            • 1/2 cup cocoa powder sifted, plus more to dust pan
            • 4 ounces semisweet chocolate chips
            • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
            • 3/4 cup white sugar
            • 3 eggs beaten
            • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
            • confectioners' sugar for top, optional

            Instructions

            • Preheat oven at 300-degrees. Cut parchment to fit in the bottom of an 8-inch cake pan. Grease pan. Set parchment inside. Grease again. Dust paper and sides of pan with cocoa.
            • In a large microwave-safe bowl, heat chocolate and butter in short bursts, stirring well between each pass, until smooth. Stir in cocoa powder followed by sugar, eggs, and vanilla. Pour into prepared pan.
            • Bake about 40 minutes, until cake begins to pull away from the sides of the pan; a toothpick inserted in the center should come out just slightly wet. Cool in pan for 20 minutes, then invert onto a rack. Remove the parchment, then invert again onto a plate to cool for at least an hour before cutting. Sprinkle with confectioners' sugar, if desired.
            • Keep cake covered by plastic wrap in fridge; keeps well as long as a week. Cake can be sliced and frozen for later enjoyment.
            • OM NOM NOM!
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