Sea Salt Caramel Chocolate Chip Mega Cookies (GF)

Servings: 8 (6oz.) Cookies

Ingredients

COOKIE DOUGH
  • 300 grams gluten free flour
  • 30 grams cornstarch
  • 1 ¾ teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 113 grams unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 100 grams light brown sugar
  • 115 grams granulated white sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 ½ teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 large egg, room temperature
  • 1 egg yolk, room temperature
  • 425 grams mixed chocolate
  • 150 grams toasted pecans
  • Optional: sea salt, caramel drizzle

Instructions

COOKIE DOUGH PREP (12 hour minimum)
  1. Combine gluten free flour, cornstarch, baking powder, and baking soda in a small bowl and set aside.
  2. In the bowl of your stand mixer (using paddle attachment), combine the butter, both sugars, vanilla extract, and salt.
  3. At a low-speed mix to combine, increase the speed to medium and mix until light and fluffy (4-6 minutes).
  4. Mixing on low, add the egg and the egg yolk one by one.
  5. Mix in the flour on low. Once fully incorporated, add the chocolate and nuts.
  6. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and portion the dough in 6oz cookies using your kitchen scale. Wrap the sheet tray with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 12hrs. Don’t skip this step!
BAKING
  1. Preheat your oven to 375F.
  2. Arrange 4 cookies on your parchment-lined sheet pan and sprinkle with flaky sea salt.
  3. Bake at 375F for 10 minutes, rotate the tray and reduce the temperature of your oven to 350F.
  4. Bake for an additional 6-9 minutes until they have crispy edges, look puffy, and still look slightly underdone in the center.
  5. Remove the cookies from the oven and allow them to cool on the sheet tray for 5-10 minutes.
  6. Move to a cooling rack and top with caramel drizzle.
  7. Repeat with the rest of your cookie dough or freeze for future cookie cravings.

Thanks to the original recipe found here.

The Story Behind the Recipe

A couple friends of ours went into labor two weeks early. A food train was quickly organized for their first weeks home and I jumped on board to help. I wanted to include a special dessert to go along with the meal I was providing. Immediately, I thought of a big cookie because when I had my first, one of my favorite things at the hospital was the cookie that came alongside my dinner service. There’s nothing better than a warm chocolate chip cookie, it always feels like home.

My challenge was to produce a cookie that would fit the needs of the new momma. She happens to eat gluten free. Gluten free and baking can sometimes feel intimidating but not with this recipe! I guarantee most people who try this baked deliciousness, would never even know it was gluten free.

Happy Baking!

White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies

Ingredients

  • 1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 12 tbsp unsalted butter 1 1/2 sticks, melted
  • 3/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup chopped macadamia nuts unsalted
  • 1 1/2 cups white chocolate chips

Instructions

  1. To a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda and salt.
  2. In a stand mixer bowl, cream together melted butter and sugars.
  3. Over medium speed, beat in the egg and egg yolk until fluffy.
  4. Add vanilla and blend well.
  5. While mixing, slowly add the flour mixture.
  6. Stir in the nuts and white chocolate chips.
  7. Let the cookie dough chill in the fridge while you preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  8. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
  9. Scoop about two tablespoons of cookie dough and form into a ball. Place 12 cookies per lined baking sheets.
  10. Bake cookies for 10-12 minutes or until the edges of the cookies are just starting to turn golden brown.
  11. Allow the cookies to cool about 5 minutes on the baking sheets, and they will continue to cook.
  12. Transfer to a cooling rack and enjoy!

Thanks to Glorious Treats for the original recipe!

Greek Nachos

Ingredients

LAMB/BEEF
  • 2 tablespoons *olive oil
  • 1/2 red onion (2/3 cup), diced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 pound *ground lamb or beef
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/3 cup pitted kalamata olives, minced
FETA TZATZIKI
  • 4 ounces crumbled feta cheese
  • 1 (5.3 ounce) container fat free greek yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons red onion, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup chopped mint
  • 1 teaspoon dried dill
TOPPINGS & HOMEMADE PITA CHIPS
  • 3/4 cup Persian cucumber, seeded and diced
  • 3/4 cup fresh tomato, seeded and diced
  • a few tablespoons red onion, chopped
  • pepper
  • fresh mint
  • 6 pitas, cut into 6 wedges each
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • salt or garlic salt

Instructions

LAMB/BEEF
  1. Heat the oil over medium high heat. Add the onions and cook for 5 minutes until onions are softened & fragrant.
  2. Add the garlic, lamb or beef, and cumin. Combine well.
  3. Cook until meat is browned and stir in the olives.
FETA TZATZIKI
  1. Mash the feta and yogurt together with a fork.
  2. Mix in the onion, olive oil, lemon juice, mint and dill.
  3. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
TOPPINGS & HOMEMADE PITA CHIPS
  1. Prepare toppings cucumber through fresh mint.
  2. When ready to serve, prepare pita chips. Set oven to 325 degrees F.
  3. Brush the pitas with olive oil and cut each into 6 triangles using a pizza cutter.
  4. Place the triangles in a single layer on a baking sheet. Sprinkle with salt or garlic salt and bake for about 5-10 minutes or until crispy.

*Notes

*I use regular store brand olive oil for a lot of meals but when it comes to Greek dishes, I always use this brand.

*I prefer this recipe with ground lamb. Lamb, feta, and greek yogurt marry perfectly in this recipe.

Thanks to the original recipe found here.

Black Forest Cupcakes

Ingredients

Cupcake
  • 1 box Duncan Hines Dark Chocolate Fudge Cake Mix
  • 3.9oz package Jell-O Instant Chocolate Fudge Pudding
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
Cupcake Filling
Icing
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1/3 cup Vanilla Instant Pudding Mix
  • 1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • Optional toppings: fresh black cherry, chocolate shavings

Instructions

Cupcake
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F and prepare a cupcake pan with 24 liners.
  2. Combine all cupcake ingredients in a large stand mixer or bowl and beat until smooth.
  3. Fill each liner with cupcake batter 1/2 – 3/4 full or use a #20 scoop.
  4. Bake for 18-20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean and then let cool completely.
  5. While cupcakes are cooling make cherry filling.
  6. To a saucepan add cherries and syrup. Set over medium heat, stirring occasionally until thickened and able to coat the back of a spoon. Let filling come to room temperature.
Icing
  1. Add heavy cream and instant pudding mix to mixer, mix on medium speed for two minutes.
  2. Turn off mixer and add in sugar and vanilla extract. Beat slowly at first and then increase mixer to medium speed until frosting becomes light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes.
Assembly
  1. Core cupcake center using a corer, knife, or the back of an icing tip.
  2. Fill each cupcake with prepared cherry filling.
  3. Pipe frosting over the filled hole and then in a circular motion to cover the cupcake top.
  4. Option to add a fresh black cherry and/or chocolate shavings.

Thanks to the recipe which inspired me here.

The Story Behind the Recipe

For my husband and my, first child, we had an Oktoberfest themed baby shower thrown by my amazing older sister. The food menu was out of this world. Although my sister did not want me to lift a finger for the party, I really wanted to contribute. So I asked her if I could make dessert.

When brainstorming what German dessert I would put together, black forest cake continuously kept coming to mind. I knew wanted to have individual desserts at our baby shower (especially during COVID). So I decided on cupcakes.

A combination of recipes came together and a little inventive experimentation resulted in this extremely moist cupcake that falls apart and melts in your mouth. Maybe even a little too moist, according to my husband but I don’t believe that is possible when it comes to dessert.

Cinnamon Apple Rose Pastries

Ingredients

  • 3 apples
  • 2 sheets of puffed pastries thawed
  • 6 tablespoons of apricot preserves
  • 4 tablespoons of water
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice and peel shavings
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 3 tablespoons sugar

Instructions

  1. Allow puffed pastries to thaw (according to package directions).
  2. Prepare 12 muffin tins with cooking spray and a light dusting of flour.
  3. Slice apples in half from top to bottom and remove cores.
  4. Slice apples into very thin slices.
  5. Fill a large bowl halfway with water.
  6. Squeeze lemon juice into the bowl of water.
  7. Place slices of apples into the water. Microwave uncovered for 5 minutes.
  8. Drain apples.
  9. Set oven to 375F and prepare a floured surface for pastries. Lay thawed pastries flat on floured surface. Slightly roll the pastries out further with a rolling pin.
  10. Cut each pastry into 6 equal slices.
  11. One at a time, spoon apricot preserve mixture onto a slice of pastry. Place 7-9 apple slices on one half of the pastry. Apple slices should be peel side facing out.
  12. Fold the pastry in half, overtop of the apples.
  13. Starting on one end, roll the pastry and apples and then place each pastry into the prepared muffin tin.
  14. Continue with the other pieces of pastries until you have 12 apple roses.
  15. Stir cinnamon and sugar together in a small bowl. Sprinkle mixture over pastries.
  16. Shave half of a lemon rind onto pastries.
  17. Place a pan of water on the bottom rack of oven so the bottom of pastries do not burn.
  18. Bake for 40-45 minutes. Top with powdered sugar. 

Thanks to the original recipe found here.

The Story Behind the Recipe

In 2018 I was lucky enough to go to the Winter Olympics in PyeongChang, Korea. My husband and I were gifted tickets to see the snowboarding competition at Phoenix Snow Park and were able to see Shaun White win gold on the men’s halfpipe.

The night before the competition we arrived and wanted to visit the olympic village. With below temperatures and icy sidewalks, we shivered our way throughout the streets looking for a local restaurant to warm up.

We ended up in a little coffee shop where we had a beer and delicious pastry.

I was so inspired by the pastry, that I set out to find a similar recipe to make at home. While it takes a little time and delicate execution, the pastry really is pretty simple and they turn out beautiful. Serve it with a bit of vanilla ice cream for an extra special treat!

Chili Chocolate Snickerdoodles

Makes: 40 Cookies

Ingredients

  • ½ cup unsalted butter, softened
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • ¾ cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 eggs, room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • ½ cup unsweetened cocoa
  • 2¼ cups all purpose flour
Cinnamon Sugar
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Instructions

  1. Prepare baking pans with parchment paper.
  2. Preheat oven to 350F.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, beat the butter and sugars together at a high speed until nice and fluffy.
  4. Beat in cream of tartar, baking soda, salt, and cayenne pepper until well blended.
  5. Beat in eggs, one at a time. Then beat in vanilla extract.
  6. On low, slowly beat in unsweetened cocoa and flour just until combined.
  7. Combine sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl.
  8. Grab a small scoop of cookie dough. Use the palm of your hands to roll the dough into a round ball. It should be about 1 inch in diameter. 
  9. Continue rolling all of the dough out, placing each ball onto a clean plate. 
  10. Then roll each ball in the cinnamon-sugar mixture and place on the prepared baking sheet.
  11. Using the back of a spoon gently flatten the middle of the cookie.
  12. Bake cookies for 10 to 12 minutes, turning the cookie pan halfway through the cooking time.
  13. Let cookies cool on cookie sheet for a few minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool.
  14. Store cookies in an airtight container.

Thanks to the original recipe found here.

Mango Banana Bread

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 ripe large bananas
  • 1 tsp orange zest
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tsp powdered ginger
  • 1/4 cup orange juice
  • 1 large mango, ripe and diced small

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Prepare a standard loaf pan with baking spray or line with parchment paper.
  3. Beat sugars and oil into a large bowl.
  4. Beat in eggs, bananas, and orange zest until well blended.
  5. Slowly beat dry ingredients into banana mixture alternately with orange juice.
  6. Fold in diced mango.
  7. Pour batter into the prepared loaf pan.
  8. Bake for 50-60 minutes. Insert a toothpick in the center of the loaf to check for doneness. A clean toothpick indicates the loaf is fully baked.

Thanks to the original recipe found here.

The Story Behind the Recipe

I hate wasting fruit. While it is delicious, it is also not always cheap and watching a ripe fruit go bad is somewhat of a nightmare for me. When I realized one afternoon that another helpless fruit was wasting away, I began my search for mango recipes. Beside the mango, I had two browning banana’s which made me think. Is there such thing as a mango and banana bread?

After a bit of searching, I found a wonderful recipe from the Canadian food blog: rockrecipes.com. While I was exciting about trying this beautifully browned loaf of bread, I was also in the middle of packing for a camping trip. I didn’t expect to take a fresh baked loaf of bread with me, but I also didn’t want it to go to waste. So, I pre-sliced the bread and without tasting it, packed it into a Tupperware container for our trip.

When we arrived at our camping site, it was pouring rain. We had a heck of a time trying to get our campsite set up and eating was the last of our concern. Exhausted from fighting mother nature, we crawled into our slightly damp sleeping bags and passed out.

The next morning, we were starving. While our initial plan was to put together a grand breakfast, it was taking way too much time to heat up our coffee percolator and to find the rest of our cooking equipment. That’s when I remembered, I had pre-sliced mango banana bread waiting for us. My families eyes lit up as a pulled out the container and popped the top.

My expectations were not very high but they should have been. Everyone kept coming back for more. A tropical paradise in my mouth, even when it was served cold and was about 60 degrees out. While I prefer the bread toasted and sometimes with a bit of butter, it is tasty either way.

Even my two year old nephew had a smile on his face as he sunk he teeth into his first bite. I recommend you give this recipe a try.