two skinny jenkins


130226 – Salted Caramel Brownies
130227, 10:26 am
Filed under: DESSERT | Tags: , ,

Brownies

Oh yeah… Thank you, Smitten Kitchen.  I just slightly adjusted the ingredients to simplify the items I had to buy, and to make it a little less bad for you.  They are still extremely rich and delicious!

Caramel

  • 1/2 C granulated sugar
  • 2 T unsalted butter
  • Heaped 1/4 t sea salt
  • 2 T heavy cream

Brownie

  • 3 ounces very dark chocolate (~70% cocoa), roughly chopped
  • 4 T unsalted butter, plus extra for pan (notice you use less than a stick of butter for the whole thing – Smitten calls for 1 1/2 sticks!!)
  • 2/3 C granulated sugar (Smitten called for 1 Cup of sugar here – after making them I think it could be further reduced to 1/2 Cup)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 t vanilla extract
  • 1/4 t  sea salt
  • 2/3 C all-purpose flour

Make caramel:

  1. Smitten prepares parchment on a plate here – I ended up pouring the caramel directly on the plate and it worked out fine… I’m in Guatemala and didn’t want to buy parchment for the sake of one little dessert.
  2. In a medium, dry saucepan over medium-high heat, melt your sugar, stirring to break up large chunks, until it has turned a nice copper color.
  3. Remove from heat and quickly and carefully stir in butter. It may not incorporate entirely but do your best.
  4. Stir in cream and salt and return saucepan to the stove over medium-high heat, bringing it back to a simmer and melted again any sugar that solidified. Cook bubbling caramel for a few minutes more, until it is a shade darker.
  5. Pour out onto a large plate and transfer plate to your freezer. Freeze until solidified, which takes about 20 minutes.
  6. To separate the caramel from the plate, one swift yet careful hit with a utensil to the middle of the plate did the trick.

Meanwhile, or when your caramel is almost firm, make your brownies:

  1. Heat oven to 350°F.  (Again, Smitten calls for parchment – not necessary!) Grease a 9 x 11 baking dish with butter or cooking spray (sides too).
  2. In a medium heatproof bowl over gently simmering water, melt chocolate and butter. Off the heat, whisk in sugar, then eggs, one at a time, then vanilla and salt. Stir in flour until just mixed – you don’t want to over stir the flour.
  3. Assemble brownies: Chop the caramel it into rough 1-inch squares. Gently fold all but a small amount of caramel bits into batter. Scrape batter into prepared pan, spreading until relatively even. Scatter remaining caramel bits on top. Bake in heated oven for 20-25 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

Cool thoroughly before cutting.



130127 – Easy Chocolate Mousse
130215, 10:31 am
Filed under: DESSERT | Tags: ,

130127_ChocolateMousse

I’m so glad we started getting Bon Appetit magazine at home.  It is so inspiring and so far everything has been super tasty!

  • 1/2 cup chilled heavy cream
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 2 large egg whites (reserve all 4 egg whites so you have backups on step 4…)
  • 1/4 cup espresso or strong coffee, room temperature
  • 3 tablespoons sugar, divided
  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 6 ounces semisweet chocolate (60-72% cacao), chopped

Preparation

  1. Beat 1/2 cup cream in medium bowl until stiff peaks form; cover and chill.
  2. Combine egg yolks, espresso, salt, and 2 Tbsp. sugar in a large metal bowl. Set over a saucepan of gently simmering water (the recipe says not allow bowl to touch water, but I don’t know how it was going to reach 160 degrees without touching a little bit – I waited over 10 minutes!). Cook, whisking constantly, until mixture is lighter in color and almost doubled in volume and an instant-read thermometer inserted into the mixture registers 160 degrees, about 1 minute.
  3. Remove bowl from pan. Add chocolate; whisk until melted and smooth. Let stand, whisking occasionally, until room temperature.
  4. Using an electric mixer, beat egg white in another medium bowl, gradually increasing the speed from slow/medium speed until foamy. With mixer running, gradually beat in remaining 1 Tbsp. sugar. Keep increase speed to high and beat until firm peaks form.  Have patience here or you egg whites will not preform.  Also, once they form peaks, STOP BEATING THEM!
  5. Carefully fold egg whites into chocolate in 2 additions; fold whipped cream into mixture just to blend (this is how the yummy fluffy texture is made).
  6. Divide mousse among six (ahem- FOUR) teacups or 4-oz. ramekins. Chill until firm, at least 2 hours. DO AHEAD: Mousse can be made 1 day ahead; cover and keep chilled. Let stand at room temperature for 10 minutes before serving.


090718 – banana chocolate chunk cookies
090718, 9:18 am
Filed under: DESSERT | Tags: , , , ,

Banana Chocolate Chunk cookies

I just ran 17 miles this morning, and these cookies make the perfect post-run treat!

  • 3 large, ripe bananas, well mashed (about 1 1/2 C)
  • 1 t vanilla extract
  • 1/4 C olive oil
  • 2 C rolled oats
  • 2/3 C ground fiber one
  • 1/3 C coconut
  • 1/2 t cinnamon
  • 1/2 t fine grain sea salt
  • 1 t baking powder
  • 6 – 7 ounces chocolate chips or dark chocolate bar chopped (or both)
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees, racks in the top third.
  2. In a large bowl combine the bananas, vanilla extract, and coconut oil. Set aside. In another bowl whisk together the oats, almond meal, shredded coconut, cinnamon, salt, and baking powder. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and stir until combined. Fold in the chocolate chunks/chips.The dough is a bit looser than a standard cookie dough, don’t worry about it.
  3. Drop dollops of the dough, each about 2 teaspoons in size, an inch apart, onto a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Bake for 12 – 14 minutes.

Makes about 3 dozen bite-sized cookies.  I only eat my bananas while they are still on the green side.  This is my favorite thing to do with the overly ripe spotted ones!



090715 – DARK Chocolate Pretzel Cookies
090715, 9:24 pm
Filed under: DESSERT, SNACK | Tags:

Chocolate Pretzels

I have been baking so much with the BBA challenge lately, that i have ceased all other baking.  I completely forgot that i have not made my Chocolate pretzels since starting this blog.  We finished up our corn muffins pretty quickly, and today, i had a hankering for these.  By the time i finished writing this post, i have had more than my fair share of these cookies.  I’ll run them off tomorrow!

  • 1 1/2 t instant espresso powder
  • 3 T boiling water
  • 1/2 C unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 C granulated sugar
  • 1 t  vanilla extract
  • 1/2 t sea salt
  • 1 large egg
  • 2/3 C unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
  • 1 3/4 C all-purpose flour
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 2 packets Sugar in the Raw, for sprinkling

1. Stir espresso powder into the boiling water until dissolved; set aside. Meanwhile, put butter and granulated sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment; mix on medium speed until creamy. Mix in vanilla and salt. Reduce speed to medium-low. Mix in egg, cocoa and dissolved espresso. Gradually add flour, and mix until a smooth dough forms. Turn out onto a piece of wax paper; pat into a square. Wrap dough, and refrigerate until cold, about 30 minutes.

2. Divide dough into 24 equal pieces. Roll into balls. Shape balls into 9 or 12-inch-long ropes. I just rolled them out on the wax paper that they the dough was refrigerated in to save on clean up.  Twist each rope into a pretzel shape. Space evenly on baking sheets lined with parchment paper.

3. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Whisk egg yolk with 1 teaspoon water in a small bowl. Brush cookies with egg wash; sprinkle with sugar in the raw. Bake cookies until dry, about 14 minutes. Let cool on sheets on wire racks. Cookies can be stored in airtight containers at room temperature up to 1 week (but they won’t be around that long).



090702 – chocolate chip buttermilk pancakes
090702, 9:26 pm
Filed under: BREAKFAST, DINNER | Tags: ,

choco buttermilk pancakes

what a delicious dinner!  it was sort of naughty.  we had planned to make taco salads for dinner, but i had bought buttermilk for my next Bread Baker’s Apprentice challange recipe, and we had both been wanting to make pancakes for a while. I think these came out a little too moist and had a tendency to tear.

  • 2 C all purpose flour
  • 4 t sugar
  • 1 t salt
  • 1 t baking powder
  • 1/2 t baking soda
  • 1/4 t cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 C buttermilk
  • 1/4 C milk
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 2 t vanilla
  • 3 T butter, melted
  • 3 T semi sweet chocolate chips
  1. preheat oven to 250 F and heat skillet over medium heat.  Mix dry ingredients in a large bowl, and mix wet ingredients in a separate, small bowl.
  2. when the pan is fully heated, add wet ingredients to the dry and gently stir until NEARLY mixed.  (be careful to leave a few clumps)
  3. keep the cakes warm in the preheated oven.


090517 – black bean brownies
090517, 3:55 pm
Filed under: DESSERT, MULTISPORT | Tags: , ,

black bean browniesthese were a wonderful post race treat!  the food at the Columbia Triathlon was not good.  When i finished, all they had left was pasta salad, dried-out bagels, and puny bananas.  APPARENTLY there were cookies and cliff bars earlier on, but the racers families ate them up DURING THE RACE!  this is a HUGE pet peeve of mine.  I had not seen such moochers until i came to DC and ran the Army 10-miler.  my jaw dropped when i saw overweight race bystanders loading boxes with the racers food.

For brownies, these were pretty healthy.  They have a ‘B’ grade on calorie-count.com.

  • 1 box of brownie mix
  • 1 can black beans
  1. Preheat oven per box directions.
  2. rinse + drain the black beans, then return to their can and fill w/ enough water to cover. (about 1/2″ below the can rim)
  3. use an immersion blender to mix up the beans and water thoroughly.  I blended them for about 3 solid minutes.
  4. stir bean mixture into brownie mix.  spray a 9 x 13 pan with cooking spray, pour in batter and bake per box directions.


090504 – super bradley muffins!
090504, 10:14 am
Filed under: DESSERT, SNACK | Tags: , ,

img_3443so… it’s chocolate time again, let the cravings begin!  working with what i have in our ‘pantry’, i decided to satiate my chocolate yen with a nice, semi-healthy, batch of bradley muffins.  while fishing around, i found a box of cocoa and some semi-sweet chips and though, why not?unfortunately, i only had a big can of libby’s pumpkin on hand, so i had eyeball the halfway point, and figure out what to do with the second half of can…

i am so naughty!

  • 15 oz. libby’s pumpkin
  • 1 box devil’s food cake mix
  • 4 T dutch process cocoa
  • 1/2 C semi-sweet chocolate chips
  1. mix all the ingredients (chips last) and bake for 23 minutes at 350°.

these ‘muffins’ came out slightly crunchy on the outside, rich and fudgy on the inside.  that is to say – PERFECT.




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