Candy corn is one of those things that you either love or hate. I love it. Ben hates it.
I know they’re supposed to taste like honey, and I guess they kinda do. But they really just taste like sweet, sugary deliciousness to me. If you’ve never tried candy corn mixed in with salted peanuts I highly recommend it; a great combination of salty and sweet. They’re also good covered in chocolate. You can find the chocolate covered ones at Central Market. When I was visiting family in Austin I bought some in the bulk section. They are evil…in a really good way.
Anyway, we have no Halloween plans. Since we don’t have kids to take trick-or-treating and we’re not the kind of people who dress up our dog our plan is to stay home and pass out candy if we have any kids come to our house. We haven’t spent Halloween here yet, so we don’t know how busy our neighborhood is. I kinda hope no one comes…more Kit Kats for me!
Anyway, I get daily cookie recipes from Martha Stewart, and this is what came today. The recipe is a small batch and I had all the ingredients so I figured I’d go ahead and make them. They are adorable little cookies, and they taste pretty good. So, this is how I celebrated Halloween this year. Enjoy!
Candy Corn Sugar Cookies
Makes about 36
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, very soft
1/2 cup sugar
1 large egg yolk
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled)
About 36 candy corns
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place butter and sugar in a medium bowl; beat with a wooden spoon until combined. Beat in egg yolk, vanilla, baking powder, and salt. Add flour, and mix until a dough forms.
Scoop out level teaspoons of dough, and roll into balls (chill dough briefly if it becomes too soft to handle). Place balls on baking sheets, 2 inches apart.
Bake, rotating sheets halfway through, until edges are firm and cookies are dry to the touch (do not let cookies color), 9-10 minutes.
Remove from oven; gently press a candy corn into center of each cookie (surface of cookies may crack slightly). Cool on sheets 1 minute; transfer to a rack to cool completely.
My house now smells of deep frying, I have a pot of oil cooling on the stove that I have no clue what I am going to do with, and a sink full of sticky dishes. On the bright side I have a rack of apple cake donuts and donut holes covered in cinnamon glaze awaiting consumption. I guess I can’t complain.
The October 2010 Daring Bakers challenge was hosted by Lori of Butter Me Up. Lori chose to challenge DBers to make doughnuts. She used several sources for her recipes including Alton Brown, Nancy Silverton, Kate Neumann and Epicurious.
There were quite a few donut options for this deep-fried challenge. All the Daring Bakers could choose from a yeast donut, a buttermilk cake donut, filled bomboloni or pumpkin donut. I was quite close to choosing the pumpkin since I have been on a pumpkin kick lately, but chose the buttermilk cake donut and added some grated apple and cinnamon to the dough.
The recipe says the dough will be sticky. I was not prepared for the level of stickiness. Use as much flour as you need to keep the dough from sticking to the cutters and your counter. I even found that after my first cutting and re-rolling the donuts cut and handled much better thanks to the additional flour that had been incorporated. Do not be shy with the flour.
After frying these beauties to a golden brown, let them drain on paper towels. After cooling you can glaze them. I used a simple glaze of powdered sugar, cinnamon and milk. If you don’t want to glaze, you could dip the donuts in cinnamon sugar while they’re still warm and get a nice crunchy exterior. Or just sprinkle them with powdered sugar. (more…)
I was tempted to not even post this recipe since these bars did not photograph very well. But Ben brought some of the more attractive specimens up to work, and apparently they were devoured within an hour. Some people at work asked for the recipe, and Ben assured them I would be posting on the blog. So, despite the not so great photo, here they are. These are tasty. Pretty messy, and a little difficult to eat and cut, but oh so tasty.
This recipe is from the McCormick website, and I did use mostly McCormick spices. Here is the link. My vanilla was from Belize (thanks, Kate!) and my cinnamon was….not really sure where this container of ground cinnamon came from now that I think about it. Anyway, all the spices make this a dessert that makes your entire house smell delicious. I might have said this before, but I love fall baking. Instead of using caramels that require a lot of tedious unwrapping I used those caramel pieces that come with the wooden sticks for making caramel apples. Something I just do not get. Caramel apples. Who really eats those things? It seems like too much work.
My bars did not cut out very neatly. I might have needed to bake them a little longer. I also think it would help to press the crumb topping into the caramel layer so that the crumbs don’t fall off the bars when they’re cut. Regardless of looks though, these are quite good. Enjoy! (more…)
It is starting to really feel like fall here. The evenings are cool, the leaves are starting to change and fall off the trees, and it is now permissible to make fall flavored desserts! So, in honor of this wonderful season I bought 4 cans of pumpkin and am going a little crazy baking pumpkin desserts.
Today I made soft, almost cake-like pumpkin cookies sandwiching a smooth cream cheese frosting. After making a few of the sandwiches I decided to simply ice the rest of the cookies. I made the cookies a little big, and so two of the cookies with the filling just made them a bit daunting.
This recipe is from Tasty Kitchen. Here is the link. If you look at this recipe you will notice that one tedious element is piping the cookies onto individual pieces of parchment paper. I just used an ice cream scoop and dolloped the cookie batter onto a large piece of parchment. This works just fine, but does give the cookies more of a mounded appearance. I fit 6 cookies per sheet and made a total of 35 cookies.
These cookies are quite soft, and the frosting makes them even harder to transport since you can’t stack them. So, these may be a dessert I make and serve from my our kitchen instead of trying to take them somewhere…like I did today. Ben liked them because they were not too sweet, and my friend Jackie said they had the texture of a pumpkin bread. They are quite good after chilling in the fridge for a few hours and eaten cold.
I think fall is my favorite baking season. Maybe I’ll make a pie here pretty soon. You don’t have to have a reason to make a pie, right?
Some of our great friends are leaving the hustle and bustle of Amarillo and are moving down to Houston at the end of the month. We’re very sad to lose them and they will be missed! It’s even more sad since they are some of the only Aggies we know up here! We had a little going away party for them this past weekend.
We had an hors d’oeurves dinner and had a wide variety of tasty foods that I need recipes for now. A super delcious queso, spicy jalapeño, black bean and corn dip, and some crazy good chocolate chip cookies.
I made chicken taquitos that turned out to be pretty good. These were easy to prepare ahead of time, easy to assemble, they re-heated well and were a popular item on our buffet table.
I used a rotisserie chicken, a “Fiesta” blend of cheese and added a little more lime juice and cilantro than the original recipe. Low fat cream cheese is fine in this recipe. You can change up the filling any way you’d like. There are so many options with taquitos! I made a black bean and corn version that people liked even more than the chicken ones, so I’ll get around to typing that one up in the next couple days. Enjoy! (more…)
You may not have a great reaction to this combination; tomato and pie. Ben didn’t either when I told him what we were having for dinner. When all was said and done though, he had three helpings last night and we finished off the rest of this today for lunch.
This recipe is from Simply Recipes. Here is the link. Her picture is so much prettier than what came out of my oven, but it still tasted great. I will admit to being a little impatient when it comes to eating these days, so maybe if I had let it cool a bit longer I would have had better luck in removing whole pieces instead of chunks of pie.
I get really hungry and excited about eating, and I just cannot wait to eat sometimes! I’m pregnant, so I’m using that as my excuse. Only 6 more weeks to use that one.
While Ben was slightly disappointed that there was no meat in our meal, he put on a happy face and eat it anyway. If you wanted to add meat, I think some crumbled cooked bacon on top of the sautéed onions would be nice.
I will make this simple meal again and I would definitely think about serving it at a ladies lunch or brunch as a whole pie or in little tart shells.
The fresh basil with the tomatoes is a lovely match as always. I used 2 cups of chopped red tomatoes and 1 cup of chopped yellow tomatoes from the rest of my tomato plant’s crop. I used a combination of mozzarella and swiss cheese with good results, but some nice sharp cheddar in there would also be tasty. The Tabasco gives a nice spicy punch, but you could leave it out if you are not a fan of that kick. Enjoy!
Courtesy of Simply Recipes
1 9-inch pie shell
1 yellow onion, chopped and sautéed in olive oil or butter
3-4 tomatoes, cut in half horizontally, squeezed to remove excess juice, roughly chopped, to yield approximately 3 cups chopped tomatoes
1/2 cup sliced basil
2 cups grated cheese (any combination you choose)
3/4 cup mayonnaise (light or regular)
1 teaspoon (or more to taste) of Frank’s Hot Sauce (or Tabasco)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Preheat oven to 350°F. Place pie shell in oven and cook for 8-10 minutes or longer until lightly golden. If you are starting with a frozen crust, you’ll need to cook it a little longer. If you are using a homemade crust, freeze the crust first, then line the crust with aluminum foil and pre-bake it for 20 minutes, then remove the foil and bake an additional 10 minutes.
Squeeze as much moisture as you can out of the chopped tomatoes, using either paper towels, a clean dish towel, or a potato ricer.
Sprinkle the bottom of the pre-cooked pie shell with onion. Spread the chopped tomatoes over the onions. Sprinkle the sliced basil over the tomatoes.
In a medium bowl, mix together the grated cheese, mayonnaise, Tabasco, a sprinkling of salt and freshly ground black pepper. The mixture should be the consistency of a gooey snow ball. Spread the cheese mixture over the tomatoes.
Place in oven and bake until browned and bubbly, anywhere from 25 to 45 minutes.