chocolate

Bready or Not: Gingerbread Chocolate Chip Cookies

Posted by on Jan 5, 2022 in Blog, Bready or Not, british, chocolate, cookies | 0 comments

Let’s start the year right with these Gingerbread Chocolate Chip Cookies!

Bready or Not: Gingerbread Chocolate Chip Cookies

These things are soft and chewy, the coarse sugar providing a sweet, crunchy crust. Plus, you get chocolate mixed throughout, which provides a lovely contrast to the spicy gingerbread.

Bready or Not: Gingerbread Chocolate Chip Cookies

I’ve noticed that it’s a very British thing to do at least part of a gingerbread recipe on the stovetop. It definitely creates a different, richer flavor that the standard American recipe that mixes everything in a bowl.

Bready or Not: Gingerbread Chocolate Chip Cookies

You’ll notice this recipe includes a lot of fresh ginger. In the past, I’ve kept ‘fresh’ ginger around by buying a hunk, using a vegetable peeler to take off the outside, then freezing the interior in pieces. You can then grate it straight from the freezer. I think I learned about this technique from a food magazine ages ago.

Bready or Not: Gingerbread Chocolate Chip Cookies

The original of this recipe is from a food magazine, too–Bake from Scratch Holiday Cookies 2019, this recipe by Edd Kimber. My version is modified a great deal. I do recommend seeking out this issue, though, as it has a LOT of great recipes.

Bready or Not: Gingerbread Chocolate Chip Cookies

These cookies have complex ginger and spice flavors, perfect for the holidays and year-round! Note that the preparation is done in stages over a few hours–these aren’t quick fix cookies. Makes about 42 tablespoon-sized cookies.
Course: Dessert, Snack
Cuisine: British
Keyword: chocolate, cookies, gingerbread
Author: Beth Cato

Equipment

  • large saucepan
  • tablespoon scoop
  • parchment paper

Ingredients

  • 1 cup light brown sugar packed
  • 1 cup unsalted butter 2 sticks, softened
  • 1/2 cup unsulphured molasses
  • 2 large eggs room temperature
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 Tablespoons fresh ginger
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 10.5 ounces chocolate chips dark, semisweet, or a mix
  • 3/4 cup turbinado sugar

Instructions

  • In a large saucepan on medium-heat, stir together brown sugar, butter, and molasses until the butter is melted and everything is mixed. Remove from heat to cool for 30 minutes.
  • Whisk eggs into the cooled mixture.
  • In a big bowl, combined flour, fresh ginger, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, ground ginger, salt, and nutmeg. Pour in the sugar from the saucepan, stirring until just combined. Fold in the chocolate.
  • Encase dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
  • Pull out dough to soften slightly, about 10 or 15 minutes. Preheat oven at 375-degrees. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Measure out the turbinado sugar into a small bowl. Use a tablespoon scoop to dole our dough, rolling each ball in sugar before setting spaced-out on baking sheet.
  • Bake for 12 to 14 minutes, until cookies are set. Cool on pan for 5 minutes before transferring them to a cooling rack.
  • Store in an airtight container at room temperature. Cookies keep for at least 3 days.

OM NOM NOM!

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    Bready or Not: Peppermint Bark Cookies

    Posted by on Dec 22, 2021 in Blog, Bready or Not, chocolate, cookies, mint | 0 comments

    These incredible Peppermint Bark cookies really do taste like peppermint bark, but in chewy, beautiful cookie form!

    Bready or Not: Peppermint Bark Cookies

    These cookies even look holiday-colorful due to the bits of crushed candy cane throughout. I used a Hershey’s Chocolate Mint Candy Cane, but many varieties of candy cane would do. You could even mix it up with different colors and flavors!

    Bready or Not: Peppermint Bark Cookies

    I kept things easier by using chocolate chips, but this would be great with chopped chocolate, too, for different textures and flavors. Peppermint Bark itself comes in different variants, after all!

    Bready or Not: Peppermint Bark Cookies

    These cookies would be fantastic for a holiday cookie exchange, or to serve at a gathering. Or, if you’re cheap like me, bake them later on in January using candy canes scored on clearance!

    Bready or Not: Peppermint Bark Cookies

    Modified from Bake from Scratch Magazine Holiday Cookies 2019.

    Bready or Not: Peppermint Bark Cookies

    These cookies really do taste like peppermint bark, but in chewy cookie form! Recipe makes about 42 cookies using a tablespoon scoop.
    Course: Dessert, Snack
    Keyword: candy cane, chocolate, cookies, mint
    Author: Beth Cato

    Equipment

    • tablespoon scoop
    • parchment paper

    Ingredients

    • 1 1/2 cups light brown sugar packed
    • 1 cup unsalted butter 2 sticks, melted
    • 1/2 cup white sugar
    • 2 large eggs room temperature
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 1 teaspoon peppermint extract
    • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
    • 1 teaspoon baking soda
    • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
    • 4 ounces white chocolate chips
    • 4 ounces dark chocolate chips
    • 4 peppermint candy canes crushed

    Instructions

    • In a mixer, beat brown sugar, butter, and white sugar until combined. Add eggs one at a time followed by the extracts.
    • In a separate bowl, stir together flour, baking soda, and sea salt. Gradually add the dry ingredients into the butter mixture. Fold in the two chocolates and candy cane bits. Cover top of dough with plastic wrap and chill it for 15 minutes.
    • Preheat oven at 350-degrees. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
    • Use a tablespoon scoop to parcel out dough, spaced out, on baking sheet. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes, until cookies are set and just turning golden. Keep on sheet for a few minutes then transfer to a cooling rack.
    • Store cookies in seal containers at room temperature. Keeps for at least 3 days.

    OM NOM NOM!

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      Bready or Not: Peppermint Cheesecake Swirl Brownies

      Posted by on Dec 8, 2021 in Blog, Bready or Not, brownies, cheese galore, chocolate | 0 comments

      These Peppermint Cheesecake Swirl Brownies will dirty a lot of bowls and tools, but to gorgeous, delicious results.

      Bready or Not: Peppermint Cheesecake Swirl Brownies

      These are an incredibly holiday-appropriate brownie. I colored the cheesecake layer in red, but really, you could do green, or even mix two small, separate bowls with green and red!

      Bready or Not: Peppermint Cheesecake Swirl Brownies

      Then there’s the peppermint. It’s not overwhelming in this recipe; to me, it was mild and refreshing against the deep chocolate flavor.

      Bready or Not: Peppermint Cheesecake Swirl Brownies

      I’m not a fan of cheesecake alone, but I do love that cheesecake flavor and texture when mixed with brownies or other great mix-ins. Be sure to check out some past Bready or Not recipes in the same family!

      Bready or Not: Peppermint Cheesecake Swirl Brownies

      Peppermint Cheesecake Swirl Brownies modified from the original recipe in Bake from Scratch Holiday Cookies 2019.

      Bready or Not: Peppermint Cheesecake Swirl Brownies

      The Peppermint Cheesecake Swirl Brownies are festive for the holidays with their flavor and bright color, but are a delicious treat to make year-round!
      Course: Dessert, Snack
      Cuisine: American
      Keyword: bars, brownies, cheese, cream cheese, mint
      Author: Beth Cato

      Ingredients

      Cream cheese swirl

      • 8 ounces cream cheese (one block) softened
      • 1/4 cup white sugar
      • 1 large egg room temperature
      • 1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract
      • red gel food coloring

      Brownie layer

      • 4 ounces dark chocolate chips or chopped chocolate bar
      • 3/4 cup unsalted butter 1 1/2 sticks
      • 1 cup white sugar
      • 1/2 cup brown sugar light or dark, packed
      • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
      • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
      • 3 large eggs room temperature
      • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
      • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder sifted

      Instructions

      • Beat cream cheese until it is smooth and creamy. Add white sugar to fully incorporate. Mix in egg and peppermint extract. Stir in droplets of food color to reach desired tint. Set bowl aside.
      • Prepare a 9×9 pan by lining it with foil and applying nonstick spray or butter to grease it. Preheat oven at 350-degrees.
      • Using a microwave-safe bowl, in brief bursts heat the butter and dark chocolate, stirring well between each pass, until both are melted and smooth. Set aside to cool for a few minutes.
      • In the large bowl of a stand mixer, use the whisk attachment to beat together both sugars, the vanilla, and salt. Add the eggs one at a time, and continue to beat at a high speed for 10 minutes. With the mixer on low, pour in the butter-chocolate. Use a spatula to fold in the flour and cocoa until just combined. Batter will be thick.
      • Pour half the brownie batter into the prepared pan; use an offset spatula to even it out. Add about half the cheesecake mix in dollops. Repeat twice more, adding brownie and cheesecake in alternate dolloped layers. Use a butter knife to swirl everything together to create a marbled effect.
      • Bake for about 45 minutes, until the middle passes the toothpick test. Cool to room temperature then cut into pieces.

      OM NOM NOM!

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        Bready or Not: White Chocolate Peppermint Bundt Cake

        Posted by on Nov 24, 2021 in Blog, Bready or Not, bundt, cake, chocolate, mint | 0 comments

        This White Chocolate Peppermint Bundt Cake features a light, refreshing peppermint flavor and a lot of white chocolate. Seriously, it’s a snow-capped mountain of a cake.

        Bready or Not: White Chocolate Peppermint Bundt Cake

        Don’t look for health food here. This thing is sweet. Lush. The middle is moist and dense, with a base (the former top) wonderfully crunchy in contrast.

        Bready or Not: White Chocolate Peppermint Bundt Cake

        White chocolate is melted into the batter, with chips also mixed in. See the golden dapples throughout the crumb? Those are the chips. They are like sweet explosions in the mouth.

        Bready or Not: White Chocolate Peppermint Bundt Cake

        And yes, there’s that snow cap: a thick blanket of melted-down chocolate wafers. It ends up firm, but ready to melt again once it meets the warmth of a mouth. It’s perfect along with that tender cake.

        Bready or Not: White Chocolate Peppermint Bundt Cake

        This will be great for any December gathering, but it’s so delicious, you’ll want to make it year-long!

        Bready or Not: White Chocolate Peppermint Bundt Cake

        This bundt cake is sweet and lush, laden with white chocolate inside and out! Make it look holiday-perfect by adding crushed peppermint on top, but really, enjoy it year-round. Good foods shouldn’t be confined to any one season!
        Course: Dessert, Snack
        Keyword: bundt cake, cake, chocolate, mint, sour cream
        Author: Beth Cato

        Equipment

        • 10-cup bundt cake
        • nonstick spray with flour
        • microwave-safe bowls

        Ingredients

        Cake:

        • 3/4 cup unsalted butter 1 and a half sticks, softened
        • 1 1/2 cups white sugar
        • 3 large eggs room temperature
        • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
        • 1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract
        • 3 cups all-purpose flour
        • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
        • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
        • 1/2 cup half & half or milk
        • 8 ounces white chocolate chips divided
        • 1/2 cup sour cream

        Topping:

        • 8- ounces white chocolate melting wafers melted
        • 5 peppermint candies crushed, optional

        Instructions

        • Preheat oven at 325-degrees. Apply nonstick spray with flour to coat the interior of the bundt pan.
        • In a big bowl, beat the butter and sugar until fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, followed by the extracts.
        • In a separate bowl, stir together flour, baking powder, and salt. Gradually mix the dry ingredients into the big bowl alternatively with the half & half, beating until they are just combined.
        • In a microwave-safe bowl, heat 2 ounces of white chocolate chips in 30 second bursts, stirring well between each zap, until it’s melted and smooth; keep an eye on the white chocolate, as it can burn fast! Add the melted chocolate into the cake batter. Follow that with the sour cream and the remaining white chocolate chips. Pour batter into the prepared pan.
        • Bake for about 1 hour 15 minutes; the middle should pass the toothpick test. If it’s getting overly brown near the end, cover the top with foil.
        • Let cake cool in pan for 20 minutes, then upend onto a cooling rack. Cool completely, speeding process in fridge if desired.
        • Melt chocolate wafers in microwave or on stovetop. Drizzle atop cake to form a thick snowcap. If desired, top with peppermints.

        OM NOM NOM!

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          Bready or Not Original: Sugar-Crusted Pumpkin Cake

          Posted by on Oct 20, 2021 in Blog, Bready or Not, breakfast, cake, chocolate, pumpkin | 0 comments

          This Sugar-Crusted Pumpkin Cake is moist, delicious, and packed with autumnal flavors!

          Bready or Not Original: Sugar-Crusted Pumpkin Cake

          There is a definite pumpkin pie-like vibe to this thing. The white chocolate chips melted along the bottom (hence the direction to grease the foil well) and formed a sort of scrumptious crust, too.

          Bready or Not Original: Sugar-Crusted Pumpkin Cake

          This thing is even pretty. I like using turbinado sugar as a top crust because it’s pretty, texturally delightful, and tastes darn good!

          Bready or Not Original: Sugar-Crusted Pumpkin Cake

          This cake will keep for at least 3 days, covered and chilled, and maybe longer. It also freezes like a champ.

          Bready or Not Original: Sugar-Crusted Pumpkin Cake

          Since this makes a 13×9 pan, it’s probably a good thing it can be portioned out over days and weeks!

          Bready or Not Original: Sugar-Crusted Pumpkin Cake

          This easy-to-make pumpkin cake makes a lot of hearty, moist cake loaded with fall flavor. It keeps well in the fridge for days, and can also be frozen for later.
          Course: Breakfast, Dessert, Snack
          Cuisine: American
          Keyword: applesauce, cake, chocolate, pumpkin
          Author: Beth Cato

          Equipment

          • 13×9 pan

          Ingredients

          Cake

          • 4 large eggs room temperature
          • 2 cups white sugar
          • 1 cup vegetable oil
          • 1/2 cup applesauce
          • 2 cups cake flour
          • 2 teaspoons baking soda
          • 2 teaspoons pumpkin spice
          • 1 teaspoon salt
          • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
          • 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
          • 1 cup white chocolate chips

          Topping

          • 1/2 cup turbinado or other coarse sugar
          • 1/2 teaspoon pumpkin spice

          Instructions

          • Line a 13×9 pan with foil and apply generous nonstick spray or butter. Preheat oven at 350-degrees.
          • Mix together the eggs, white sugar, vegetable oil, and applesauce. Add the cake flour, baking soda, pumpkin spice, and salt. Follow up with the vanilla extract and pumpkin puree. Fold in the white chocolate chips.
          • Pour batter into the pan and level out. Mix together the two topping ingredients and sprinkle over the cake.
          • Bake for 1 hour, or until the middle passes the toothpick test. Let cool at room temperature, then store in fridge. Cake will keep for at least 3 days in the fridge, but can also be sliced and frozen for later enjoyment.

          OM NOM NOM!

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            Bready or Not Original: Thin Mint Cake

            Posted by on Sep 22, 2021 in Blog, Bready or Not, brownies, cake, chocolate, mint | Comments Off on Bready or Not Original: Thin Mint Cake

            Oh hey, it’s time for cake. A Thin Mint Cake that is neither too big or too small, something that keeps well stashed in the fridge, and looks as amazing as it tastes.

            Bready or Not Original: Thin Mint Cake

            If you love chocolate and mint, this is the cake for you. The cake is loaded with chocolate flavor, and a ganache adds a shiny finishing touch.

            Bready or Not Original: Thin Mint Cake

            The middle layer of the cake is essentially a peppermint or mint-flavored buttercream. Sweet but not too sweet, it gives good contrast to balance the prevalent chocolate flavor.

            Bready or Not Original: Thin Mint Cake

            I used this cake to try out a technique I’ve only read about and seen on TV before–I used four toothpicks to measure the halfway point on the sides of the cake, then tugged a piece of floss to cut the cake evenly in half! It worked out well.

            Bready or Not Original: Thin Mint Cake

            Of course, you can still use a knife to cut through. The toothpicks will still be a helpful guide.

            Bready or Not Original: Thin Mint Cake

            This is an ideal birthday or special occasion cake for a small group!

            Greatly modified from Eating Well Magazine May 2020.

            Bready or Not Original: Thin Mint Cake

            This Thin Mint Cake is a glorious, not-too-big-or-small layer cake loaded with chocolate and mint goodness. It’s not hard to make, either. Cutting the cake in half is the trickiest bit, and a piece of floss makes that easy!
            Course: Dessert
            Keyword: cake, chocolate, layer cake, mint
            Author: Beth Cato

            Equipment

            • 9-inch cake pan
            • ruler
            • toothpicks
            • unwaxed floss
            • parchment paper

            Ingredients

            Cake

            • 1 cup all-purpose flour
            • 1/2 cup white whole-wheat flour
            • 3/4 cup white sugar
            • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder sifted
            • 1 teaspoon baking soda
            • 1/2 teaspoon salt
            • 1 cup water
            • 1/3 cup canola oil
            • 1 Tablespoon apple cider vinegar or other cider vinegar
            • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
            • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

            Mint Filling

            • 1/2 cup unsalted butter (1 stick), room temperature
            • 1 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar sifted, more as needed for consistency
            • 1/4 teaspoon peppermint extract or mint extract
            • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
            • 1/4 teaspoon salt
            • 1-2 drops green food coloring
            • 2 Tablespoons half and half or milk

            Glaze

            • 1/2 cup half and half
            • 1 1/4 cups semisweet chocolate chips
            • pinch salt

            Instructions

            To prepare the cake

            • Preheat an oven at 350-degrees. Cut a piece of parchment paper to fit inside a 9-inch cake pan. Apply nonstick spray inside pan, place parchment inside, and spray it again.
            • Stir together all-purpose flour, white whole wheat flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, and salt.
            • In another bowl, whisk together water, oil, vinegar, and both extracts. Gradually mix the wet ingredients into the dry until the batter is smooth. Pour into the prepared pan. Tap and thump it gently on the counter to knock out as many bubbles as possible.
            • Bake 25 to 30 minutes, until a toothpick in the middle emerges with few crumbs attached. Let the pan cool on a rack for 10 minutes, then invert cake onto the rack to cool completely.

            Make the filling

            • Beat the butter until it is creamy and light. Add the confectioners' sugar, 1/2 cup at a time, to fully incorporate; if the mixture is still too soft and loose, add more sugar. Add mint and vanilla extract, followed by the salt. Add a few drops of food coloring to achieve the desired tint. Add the half and half and beat to make the filling fluffy and light.

            Slice the cake and fill

            • Stick a toothpick into the halfway point at each side of the cake; four toothpick markers work well. Use a knife to barely slice into the cake above each toothpick. Continue to use a long-bladed knife to slice all the way through, or use a long piece of unwaxed floss with the toothpicks as a guide to divide the cake evenly in half.
            • Place the base of the cake on a serving plate. Spread the filling over the cake. Place the top of the cake over it, cut side down.

            Make the glaze

            • Microwave the half & half in a microwave-safe bowl for about a minute, until hot. Stir in the chocolate chips and salt. Stir, stir, stir until the chocolate is smooth and glossy. Let cool about 5 minutes to thicken, then slowly pour and spread glaze over the cake. Let sit at room temperature or in fridge to set, then slice in and enjoy!
            • Store cake in fridge. Exposed sides of the cake will dry out more, but it will still be tasty. Keeps for at least 4 days.

            OM NOM NOM!

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