Chocolate, coffee crunch bars

GEDSC DIGITAL CAMERA
When you need chocolate you NEED chocolate so it’s always a good idea to store some for those days when the craving hits hard. This is one of those recipes born out of desperation, during a particularly fierce chocolate craving I gathered up some baking supplies and whipped this up. To my surprise ( and relief) these bars came out amazing and are now my new favorite treat.

This recipe makes quite a lot especially if you cut them into  2 inch squares. Store them in a bag in the freezer for emergencies  but remember to hide them behind the veggies so no one else eats them.
What you need

  • 1 c dark chocolate chips ( Or carob to make this vegan!) plus a handful for good luck
  • 1/2 c coconut oil
  • 6 cups rice krispies cereal, you can get it in bulk at Winco for so cheap!
  • 1 heaping tablespoon of fine ground coffee, espresso grind is best
  • coarse sea salt

How to make it

  • Melt chocolate and coconut oil together
  • in a big bowl mix together  rice krispies , ground coffee and melted chocolate mix until mostly coated
  • throw in your handful of chocolate chips for good luck
  • press into a baking dish lines with wax paper.  I used a deep baking pan for bars but you can do a baking dish for thicker slices.
  • Using a sheet of wax paper, press your bars into the dish gently to help it all stay together
  • sprinkle with a pinch of sea salt
  • put into the freezer for half hour to an hour until hardened
  • cut into pieces and devour!
Advertisements

Fig, raspberry & goat cheese pastry

fig, raspberry goat cheese pastry

I have been on a sweets kick, that and every time I try to photograph my savory dishes I can’t seem to get a good photo.  I don’t know why but when ever I try to photograph dinner it just does not look as pretty as it tastes. Perhaps it is the time of day and the light  or my family pacing behind me waiting  patiently to eat; What ever it is, it stinks and I wish I could have shown you all the salmon, goat cheese and chard tart I made for late lunch but I can’t.

At least I was able to snap a few photos of this pastry before it was devoured by the girl child and the mischievous dog! This pastry was a last-minute sweet tooth concoction and It was so yummy. This is a good quick sweet treat and would be so good with a scoop of yogurt for breakfast  or ice cream for dessert… or in bed  while watching reruns of  project runway in your jammies.

What you need

  • puff pastry or handmade if you are  champ try this recipe
  • 1/4 c  figs
  • 2 tbs raspberry jam
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 1/2 c goat cheese
  • 2 tsp orange zest
  • 1 tbsp orange juice
  • 1 egg  white
  • a few tbsp of raw sugar or regular sugar

How to make it

  • thaw pastry dough or make your own like a boss…or someone without hungry kids
  • finely chop figs
  • mix goat cheese and honey together
  • add orange zest and juice
  • mix in jam and figs
  • cut pastry dough into  4 inch long rectangles
  • place a heaping spoonful of the mix into center of dough
  • fold over and press edges with a fork
  • brush egg whites onto top of pastry
  • sprinkle with sugar
  • bake at 300 for about 10-12 minutes

Whole wheat baked donut holes

BeFunky_IMG_6363.jpg

I know I know, I am a health food junkie,  a lover of all things real and pure and good for my body  so what the heck am I doing posting a recipe for donuts ? The truth is, even though I love health food sometimes a girl just has to have a donut and  no matter how many spoonfuls of honey  you eat,  you STILL want a friggin’ donut.

I have been craving donuts for days-sweet, sugary  and fried bites of clouds. I didn’t want to walk down to topper bakery or fry anything in my house so  I skimmed through some recipes and after seeing how long they take I started to feel a bit defeated. Finally when the craving was too much to bear any longer I sucked it up and started my project.

At first I tried a recipe I found on a food blog and it failed miserably. I check the recipe over and over to see where I went wrong, I was substituting whole wheat flour but it shouldn’t have bombed that badly.  I had a mound of dense rock hard dough on my counter…useless. I tried the recipe again making some tweaks just in case it was my high elevation that was the problem….rock hard again.

Finally, I tossed the recipe and started from scratch.After a few tantrums and a bit of sobbing and yes begging the flour to produce a donut (just one donut PLEASE! ) I finally came up with a recipe that produced the fluffiest whole wheat donut holes I ever devoured in 3 seconds flat.

These donuts are heavenly and perfect and so good it hurts…especially if you eat 7 in a row.  They do take a little while to make but the end result is so worth the wait. I made these with both cinnamon and sugar and for the adventurous  foodie – cinnamon , sugar, cocoa and  a pinch of cayenne. They are best hot and fresh but I certainly would not say no to cold ones later in the day.

What you need

  • 1 c warm milk
  • 3 tbsp active dry yeast
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 1/2- 2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 3 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tbsp vanilla
  • 1/4 c melted butter
  • pinch of salt
  • cinnamon sugar & melted butter for topping

How to make it

  • Whisk warm milk and yeast in a standing mixer until dissolved
  • whisk in 1/2 c of the flour
  • let sit for 10 minutes
  • whisk in eggs, vanilla, salt and sugar
  • whisk in butter
  • slowly add the remaining flour little by little until the dough comes together and pulls away from the sides
  • the dough will be  a bit sticky, as long as it forms a ball this is ok
  • put in a greased bowl and let rise for 1 hour or until doubled in size
  • put in the fridge or freezer if it is too sticky to handle, I found that 20 minutes in the freezer worked wonders
  • Roll of on a floured surface 1/4 inch thick
  • use a cookie cutter or measuring cup ( like me) to cut into small circles about 1.5 inches
  • place on a cookie sheet and let sit for about half hour until it double in sizes again
  • bake at 350 for about 10 minutes, do not over cook, these cook quickly and only need a bit of baking to retain their fluffy insides.

Topping 

  • Melt butter in a bowl and put cinnamon sugar in another bowl
  • brush donut holes with butter and drop in cinnamon sugar bowl until coated
  • enjoy!

whole wheat baked donut holes

Healthy peanut butter & jam cookie sandwiches (sugar/flour free)

peanut butter and jelly cookie sandwich

The other day I went to a “meet the producers” event to learn more about local farmers, ranchers and foodie companies around me. The e co center was packed full of people and I got to try tons of amazing cheeses, soups, desserts, breads, produce and jams.

One of the companies at the event was one I have had a foodie crush on for a while. Butcher’s bunches is a great company and  not just because of their delicious jams and cool flavor combos. Butcher’s uses only local and sustainably grown  produce  and absolutely no sugar or yucky sugar substitutes.

While I was at the ‘meet the producers’ event I got to meet the founder and she gave me 2 of their jams to try and best off all they are going to give one of you readers a jar as well (giveaway at end of post).  I have been wanting to make a peanut butter and jam cookie sandwich for a while but was waiting for the perfect jam, after  trying a spoonful of each I knew Butcher’s was a match.

These jams are naturally sweet and taste just like fresh picked fruit. I tried the raspberry and blackberry jams and both were like jars of fresh berries both tart and sweet and oh so addicting. This recipe is  a classic childhood favorite disguised as a guilty treat and if you use organic protein powder it becomes a healthy protein rich power food.  I hope you enjoy it!

What you need

How to make it

  • preheat oven to 275
  • blend together peanut butter and honey, make sure its  well blended
  • mix in egg
  • add protein powder or dry ingredient of choice
  • mix well
  • roll into balls and place on cookie sheet a couple inches apart
  • press balls down with the bottom of a jar or cup to flatten
  • bake in oven for around 8 minutes until edges are slightly darker brown
  • cookies will be soft but firm up as they cool
  • when cool spread jam on the bottom of one cookie and top with another
  • let sit for 5 minutes (if you can resist) to let jam soak into the cookie a bit.
  • gobble up!

Featured on POPsugar!

Raw honey & peanut butter protein treat

honey peanut butter protein treats

As a nursing mama it is super important to have a quick and easy protein snack on hand. I spend a lot of time nursing and a most of that time is in a rocking chair far away from the kitchen.  I made this recipe to keep on the table next to me for when I inevitably become ravenously hungry and no one is around to fetch me a snack and I am just to tired to try myself.

Of course the kiddo, the dog and the husband saw my tasty treat and snagged a few and  it quickly became a house favorite. Packed full of protein and yummy raw honey sweetness,  it really does taste like candy but I assure you it is powerful protein magic.  These are quick to make so if you are juggling kids and dishes and giant dogs  you can whip these up in no time, hand over a few to everyone and  get a few moments of peace.

They are great for hikes or post workout , snacking while nursing  or silencing the brood.  They will stay  fresh in the fridge for weeks (or freezer for a cold snack)  so go ahead and double or triple the recipe!

What you need

How to make it

  • mix all ingredients together except cocoa powder
  • roll into balls
  •  put into the freezer for half hour to firm
  • drop half of the balls ( or all if yo love chocolate!)  in a bowl of cocoa powder
  • try not to eat them all in 3 seconds, good luck

Peanut butter & chocolate surprise treats (sugar free)

peanut butter and chocolate surprise treats

I love sweet treats but I hate sugar, a real dilemma I know. It isn’t that I think sugar is terrible to eat, it’s that I know if I do eat it I will have to share with my daughter and one bite of sugar in her system and she’s bouncing off the walls for days. Today my chocolate craving hit HARD and I needed a sweet treat to get me through.

I found a few sugar-free chocolate  recipes on pinterest  but I wanted something  more than just chocolate. I thought it would be fun to add a surprise inside  chocolate peanut butter treats and my daughter agreed it was an awesome idea. I had sunflower seeds, raisins, dried cranberries, frozen banana and apple slices on hand  and some cute mini cupcake liners to make this fun recipe.

This is a great late night sugar craving snack, a good treat to reward a kiddo or a fun treat for a picnic or party. Let me know what you think and show me your results!

What you need

  • 1 1/3 C organic peanut butter
  • 1/4 c sugar free cocoa powder
  • 1/2 C coconut oil, I used Tropical traditions
  • 4 tbsp honey
  • treats to go inside: fresh, dried or frozen fruit or nuts… I used dried cranberries, apple slices, raisins, frozen banana and sunflower seeds
  • Mini cupcake or candy paper liners like these,ooh pretty!

How to make it

  • melt coconut oil and add to food processor or blender with peanut butter, cocoa powder and honey until blended
  • line a baking sheet with cupcake liners
  • Put treats in bottom of cupcake liners
  • pour mixture into liners until 3/4 full
  • put in freezer for at least an hour, overnight is best
  • store in a freezer bag in the fridge or freezer
  • enjoy!

**full disclosure: I was given a sample of a product used in this recipe. I was in no way obligated to use the product or review it. I only use products I love, trust  and have tested.