Thursday, August 1, 2013

Salted Caramel Chocolate Cookies

Ok, these may be the yummiest cookies I've had in a while. I think I ate like five of them yesterday, plus enough raw cookie dough for a least another one. SO good!

The cookies are super easy to make, but involve slightly more foresight than many of my other recipes because you need to chill the cookie dough in the fridge for an hour or so before shaping and baking. Also, I don't normally have Rolo on hand in the house (well, probably because I would eat it all!), so I had to buy some before I could make this recipe.

Salted Caramel Chocolate Cookies
Adapted from this recipe on
Yield: about 30 cookies
Print recipe

1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup all-purpose flour
2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/8 tsp salt
2 tbsp milk
1/2 cup chocolate chips
30 Rolos
coarse salt
  1. In a mixing bowl, cream butter and sugars together until light and fluffy.

  2. Add egg and vanilla. Scrape down bowl as needed.

  3. In a separate bowl, sift flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt together. Add to butter and egg mixture and mix just until combined.

  4. Add milk and chocolate chips. Mix just until combined.

  5. Dough will be thick and sticky. Chill in refrigerator for at least 1 hour.

  6. Preheat oven to 350F.

  7. Remove dough from refrigerator. Take 1 large tablespoon of dough and place a Rolo in the center of the dough. Cover with dough so the caramel is securely stuffed inside and round into a ball.

  8. Flatten slightly and place on parchment lined baking sheet, about 1 inch apart.

  9. Sprinkle each cookie with coarse salt before placing in oven.

  10. Bake 8 to 10 minutes. Cookies will be very soft and appear underdone.

  11. Let cool at least 10 minutes on baking sheet and then transfer to a rack to cool completely.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013


Another healthy-eating thing I've been trying is eating raw one day a week. It hasn't been too hard so far - smoothie for breakfast, crudites for lunch, and a salad for dinner, with fruits or nuts as snacks whenever I get hungry. I made hummus to dip the veggies in at lunch, and while it may not be technically raw, it's close enough for me.

Adapted from Fresh at Home
Yield: 2-3 servings
Print recipe

1 can chickpeas
2 cloves garlic, roasted
1 tbsp tahini
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup water
  1. In a blender, puree all ingredients.

  2. Add more water if necessary to achieve desired consistency.

Curried Dal

I've been trying to eat healthier recently and part of that is trying to eat more vegetarian meals. I have made a few recipes from a book called Fresh at Home, Everyday Vegetarian Cooking, and it has some tasty vegetarian ideas. I love curry and have made lentil curry before, but I really enjoy this recipe.

This recipe calls for red lentils, but you can also use yellow lentils or white lentils or a combination of the three. Lentils are easy to digest and are low in calories and high in protein and fibre. This dal can be enjoyed as a soup on its own or poured over rice. You could also add more vegetables such as spinach, tomatoes, mushrooms, or eggplant.

Curried Dal
Adapted from Fresh at Home
Yield: 4-6 servings
Print recipe

2 tbsp canola oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 carrot, peeled and diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tbsp ginger, minced
1/4 tsp curry powder
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp garam masala
1/2 tsp turmeric
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1 cup red lentils
4 cups vegetable stock
1 can coconut milk
green onion or cilantro to garnish
  1. In a large pot, heat oil over medium heat.

  2. Add onion, carrot, garlic, and ginger and saute until soft, about 5 minutes.

  3. Add spices and cook for 30 seconds.

  4. Add lentils, stock, and coconut milk. Simmer for 20 minutes or until lentils are soft.

  5. Garnish with green onions and/or cilantro and serve.

Apple Brownie

Wow, I haven't posted on here in way too long!

I've been trying out some new recipes recently and realized that I don't really have a good recipe storage system. I find recipes in all different places - cookbooks, websites, etc. - and I usually change them up a little bit, and then of course the next time I want to make it, I cant remember either where I got it or what changes I made! So I think I will try to get back to posting recipes here. I don't have pictures for everything at this point, but I will take some when I make these things again and then add the pictures.

These apple brownies are super easy to make. The hardest part is peeling and dicing the apple, which is not hard at all. I probably got them into the oven in about 10 minutes. And of course they are super delicious!

Apple Brownie
Adapted from this Martha Stewart recipe
Yield: 1 8x8 square pan, or 9 2.5-inch squares
Print recipe

1/2 cup butter, melted
1 cup sugar
1 egg
1/2 cup walnuts, chopped
1 firm-sweet apple, peeled, cored, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
  1. Preheat oven to 350F.

  2. Line an 8-inch square baking pan with parchment, leaving a slight overhang on all sides.

  3. In a mixing bowl, combine butter, sugar, and egg and whisk until pale, about 2 minutes.

  4. Add walnuts and apples and mix slightly.

  5. In a small bowl, combine flour, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add to mixture and stir in just until combined.

  6. Scrape batter into pan and bake until toothpick inserted into center comes out clean, about 20 minutes.

  7. Cool completely.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Caramels with Himalayan Pink Sea Salt

I have wanted to make caramels for a long time. When I was visiting Toronto, my mom had left me a book with a recipe for caramels and thye didn't look too hard. So as soon as I got home, one of the first things I made was the caramels.

They took a long time (about an hour) because I had the stove on pretty low, but I think cooking it slowly yielded a great result. The caramels were the perfect texture - soft and chewy - and a beautiful caramel colour. A sprinkling of Himalayan pink sea salt on top added a lot to the taste as well.

I also individually wrapped each square in wax paper, so they were very cute and easy to give away. The only thing I'm not sure about is the storage temperature - some of them peeled away easily from the wax, but other ones stuck a little bit.

Future caramel ideas - flavoured caramels, like lavender or raspberry, chocolate caramels, or chocolate-covered caramels. Mmmm.

Caramels with Pink Sea Salt
Adapted from Miette
Yield: 64 1-inch squares
Print recipe

1 1/2 cup whipping cream
1 1/4 cup whole milk
2 cups sugar
1 1/4 cup brown sugar
1 tsp kosher salt
2 tbsp butter
1/2 cup corn syrup
3 tbsp water
Himalayan sea salt, for sprinkling
  1. Line an 8-inch square baking pan with parchment, leaving a slight overhang on all sides.

  2. In a medium pot, combine cream, milk, sugar, brown sugar, salt, butter, corn syrup, and water.

  3. Clip a candy thermometer to the side of the pot.

  4. Place over medium-low heat and cook, whisking occasionally, until the mixture 246F, 45-60 minutes.

  5. Once mixture reaches the correct temperature, remove from heat and pour into prepared pan.

  6. Let cool for 15 minutes and then sprinkle with sea salt.

  7. Let cool to room temperature and then refrigerate pan for 30-90 minutes, until set.

  8. Lift caramel out of pan using parchment paper handles. Place on waxed paper on top of a cutting board.

  9. Measure 1-inch intervals and then cut the caramel into 1-inch squares.

  10. Wrap each caramel in a square of waxed paper and twist both ends. Store in an airtight container for up to 10 days.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Turkish Lentil Soup

A lot has changed since the last time I posted. I quit Hawksworth. I got into the pastry program at VCC and I start classes on Monday. We were supposed to take a trip to France, but ended up in Turkey and Croatia instead. We had a wonderful time exploring countries we didn't know much about and of course eating some local cuisine. My favourite new food that we found in Turkey was lentil soup. It's thick and filling and a little bit spicy - so delicious. I found a recipe and I think it's a pretty good first attempt at recreating the Turkish version.

Turkish Lentil Soup
Adapted from this recipe on
Yield: 4-6 servings
Print recipe

2 tbsp butter
1 large onion, diced
1 large carrot, diced
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 tbsp tomato paste
1 tsp ground cumin
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
1 cup red lentils
4 cups chicken broth
1 cup water
salt and pepper, to taste
  1. In a large pot, melt butter over medium heat.

  2. Add onion, carrot, and garlic, and sweat with a pinch of salt until onions are translucent, 8 to 10 minutes.

  3. Add tomato paste, cumin and cayenne. Stir to combine.

  4. Add lentils, broth, and water, and bring to a boil.

  5. Lower heat and simmer, uncovered, until vegetables are tender and lentils begin to fall apart, about 25 minutes.

  6. Remove pot from heat and use an immersion blender to blend soup until it is creamy but not completely puréed.

  7. Add salt and pepper to taste, and serve with a lemon wedge to garnish, if desired.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011


I wanted to make a second thing for A to bring to his work function, thinking I would try out a new cookie recipe. But I was working at the hockey game yesterday and the pastry girl had made marshmallows, and I decided that's what I wanted to do. I told her my plan and she suggested that I made smores instead. Brilliant. So I made a basic graham cracker crust, covered it with ganache, and then placed the marshmallows on top. If I had a torch, I would probably try brulee-ing the tops of the marshmallow to give it that toasted taste. Delicious.

Adapted from this recipe on
Yield: 1 9x13 pan or 36 1.5x2.25 inch bars
Print recipe

icing sugar, for dusting
3 tbsp gelatin
1/2 cup water
2 cups sugar
2/3 cup light corn syrup
1/4 cup water
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
  1. Prepare a 9x13 glass dish by greasing it with butter and sifting icing sugar over the bottom and sides of pan.

  2. In the bowl of a food processor, combine gelatin and 1/2 cup water. Let bloom for 10 minutes.

  3. In the meantime, in a pot, combine sugar, corn syrup, and 1/4 cup water.

  4. Over medium-high heat, bring to a boil. Allow to boil until temperature passes 250F.

  5. Turn mixer on at low speed, and drizzle in hot sugar.

  6. Once all syrup is mixed in, turn mixer to medium-high speed, and add salt.

  7. Continue mixing for 8 to 10 minutes. Once volume of marshmallow has stopped increasing, add vanilla or other flavouring (I also added almond extract).

  8. Pour marshmallow into prepared pan. Use a buttered rubber spatula to spread mixture.

  9. Let marshmallow cool and set for 4 hours or overnight.

  10. Turn out onto a cutting board dusted with icing sugar. Using a pizza wheel, section the marshmallows into desired shapes. Dredge each piece in icing sugar.

  11. Store in airtight container.