Category Archives: Dessert

Peppermint Crunch Cookies

Peppermint Crunch Cookies

Several years ago I found Andes Peppermint Crunch Baking Chips in the Holiday baking section and decided to give them a try. The first batch I just used them in the chocolate chip cookie recipe I grew up making. They where okay, but I knew I could improve them. The next time I made them they where good warm but too crunchy once they cooled. The third time was the charm.

Ingredients

3/4 cup Butter Flavored Shortening
3/4 cup Salted Butter
1 cup Brown Sugar
2 cups Granulated Sugar
1/4 cup Sour Cream
4 Eggs
1 T Pure Vanilla
2 tsp Salt
2 tsp Baking Soda
1 tsp Baking Powder
5 cups Flour
2-10 oz Andes Peppermint Crunch Baking Chips (You can substituent Andes Mints chopped up)

Directions

Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper. Cream together shortening, butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar. Stir in sour cream, eggs, vanilla, salt, baking soda, and baking powder. Mix completely before stirring in flour. Once flour is completely incorporated stir in baking chips.

Scope 1/2 inch to 1 1/2 inch balls on the the tray leaving plenty of room for them to spread out while baking. Bake for 6 1/2 minutes for 1/2 inch to up to 10 minutes for 1 1/2 inch balls until golden brown.

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Star Anise Wild Orange Shortbread

Star Anise Wild Orange Shortbread Cookies

Joseph’s family traditionally had Walkers Shortbread for Christmas. Our kids look forward to them every year.

When I was in High School I had a friend who traditionally made Shortbread in November for Christmas, so I have always been intimidated to try it. I can’t believe I didn’t research it until now.

Shortbread is generally associated with and originated in Scotland, but due to its popularity it is also made in the remainder of the United Kingdom, and similar biscuits are also made in Denmark, Ireland and Sweden. The Scottish version is the best-known, and Walkers Shortbread is Scotland’s largest food exporter.

According to The History of Scottish Shortbread – Historic UK“The story of shortbread begins with the medieval “biscuit bread”. Any leftover dough from bread making was dried out in a low oven until it hardened into a type of rusk: the word “biscuit” means “twice cooked”. Gradually the yeast in the bread was replaced by butter, and biscuit bread developed into shortbread.”

After researching I decided to play around and the results are a pleasant twist.

Ingredients

1 lb Unsalted Butter Softened
1 12/ cups Powdered Sugar
10-15 drops doTerra Wild Orange Essential Oil (1 tsp Orange LorAnn Candy Oil)
4-5 drops doTerra Star Anise Essential Oil (1/4 tsp Anise LorAnn Candy Oil)
5 1/2 cups All-Purpose Flour

Directions

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Cream together butter, powdered sugar, and oils. Add in flour 1/2 cup at a time. The last cup and 1/2 you will need to knead in by hand.

Mixing Shortbread

Dust a pastry sheet with powder sugar. Roll out dough to 1/4 inch thick.

Rolling out shortbread

Cut out dough. Traditionally it is cut in circles, rectangles, or squares. You may poke holes with a fork for decoration. Bake for 15-20 minutes until golden brown on the edges.

Short Bread Baking

Easy Peppermint Bark

I love chocolate! Dark Chocolate, Semi-Semi Chocolate, Milk Chocolate, Brewed Chocolate aka Choffy, and White Chocolate. (Yes, I know it’s not REALLY Chocolate) I also really like Mint Chocolate which is where Peppermint Bark fits in. The funny thing about it is that I only think about Peppermint Bark at Christmas because that is when you can get Candy Canes.

Ingredients

14 oz Hershey’s Special Dark
12 oz Dark Chocolate Chips
8 to 12 drops doTerra Peppermint Essential Oil
24 oz White Chocolate Chips
1 1/2 cups Crushed Candy Canes (I use my food processor or blender)

Directions

Lay out a large piece of aluminium foil on a large sheet pan or 2 cookie sheets. In a microwave safe glass or ceramic bowl melt the dark chocolate on half power in the microwave melt the dark chocolate for 2 minutes and stir. Return to the microwave on half power for 1 minute and stir. Repeat until smooth. Stir in peppermint essential oil. (12 drops for a very strong flavor. I usually do 10 drops.)

Spread evenly on to the aluminium foil. Place in the

In a microwave safe glass or ceramic bowl melt the dark chocolate on half power in the microwave melt the white chocolate for 2 minutes and stir. Return to the microwave on half power for 1 minute and stir. Repeat until smooth. Stir in 3/4 cup of peppermint candy cane pieces.

Carefully drizzly over the chocolate layer as evenly as possible and smooth out evenly. Sprinkle remaining peppermint candy cane pieces over the white chocolate evenly.

Allow to harden completely before breaking up in to pieces.

Chocolate Orange Cheese Ball

Chocolate Orange Cheese Ball

This is a fun party snack. We like to eat it with vanilla wafers, graham crackers, and ginger snaps.

Ingredients

8 oz Mascarpone Cheese
8 oz Cream Cheese
1 T Honey
20-25 drops doTerra Wild Orange Essential Oil
6 oz Mini Chocolate Chips

Directions

Mix mascarpone cheese, cream cheese, and honey until smooth. Add in wild orange essential oil. Fold in chocolate chips. Form into a ball and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 12 – 24 hours before serving.

Wrapping into a ball.

Choffy Lace Cannoli Tarts

I have shared my love of Cannoli’s and my explorations making homemad cannoli’s on my Cannoli Cream Recipe. Well this recipe is a one of my experiments to create the perfect homemade cannoli. Well these shells turned out to be very labor intensive and way to delicate. But the flavor is incredible. Because they where difficult to roll in to tube I also formed them into tart cups. These are truly a labor of love and take 3 – 5 hours to complete. The flavor and textures together are AMAZING if you have to time and patients it needs to make them.

Shell = Choffy Lace Cookies

Ingredients

1 ½ cup unsweetened shredded coconut
1 cup oat flour (wheat or white flour works as well)
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup rolled oats
¾ cup Choffy Grinds (post brew)
½ cup butter
¼ cup brewed Choffy
¼ Corn Syrup
1 tsp baking soda
More Choffy if needed
1 cup White Chocolate Chips

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper (these biscuits can be quite sticky, so I really recommend the parchment paper if you have it).

Add the coconut, flour, brown sugar, rolled oats, and Choffy grinds to the large mixing bowl and stir to combine.

In a small saucepan, melt the butter, brewed Choffy, and corn syrup together, boiling. Remove from heat. Add the soda into the melted butter mixture. (the soda will cause the mixture to bubble and expand).

Pour the melted butter mixture into the dry ingredients and stir till well combined. If the mixture seems to dry, add a little more brewed Choffy (I added about a tablespoon).

Form 1 inch size ball, place four onto the lined baking sheet, leaving plenty of room for spreading (they will spread quite a bit).

Bake the biscuits in preheated oven for 10 minutes (flat and until golden). Allow the biscuits to cool on the tray for 1-2 minutes, then shape as shown in videos below. You only have 1-3 minutes for the cookies to be pliable enough to shape. I broke about 1/3 of the cookies as I was trying to shape them. Remove from the form 3-5 minutes after shaping.

 

Filling = Cannoli Cream

Ingredients

1/2 cup cornstarch
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 cups heavy whipping cream
1 tsp dehydrated orange peels
2 cups mascarpone cheese
4 cups part skim ricotta cheese
2 tsp vanilla

Directions

In a heavy sauce pan combined cornstarch and sugar and whisk together. Stir in whipping cream and orange peels. Cook over medium heat stirring constantly until it starts to boil approximately 5 minutes. Add in mascarpone cheese and stir until completely smooth. Add in ricotta cheese and stir continually until thick and the whisk leaves tracks as you stir.

Remove from heat onto a cooling rack. Stir every 2-5 minutes to maintain the smooth texture. After 60 minutes transfer to a bowl with a lid and refrigerate for 1 hour.

While setting up prepare the chocolate.

Chocolate

Melt 12 oz Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips in the microwave on half power for 3 1/2 to 4 1/2 minutes stirring every 30 seconds until smooth.

Drizzle over the cannoli shells or spoon into the bottom of cannoli tarts.

Just before serving, place cannoli cream into a piping bag and fill the shells or tarts. Only fill the number you need as the shells will start to soften once they are filled Refrigerate any leftovers.

Cannoli Cream

I have loved Cannoli’s from the first time I tasted them. While I love pistachios I prefer my Cannoli’s with a smooth filling and chocolate drizzled on top. A few years ago I got a crazy idea to make homemade cannoli’s after watching how on Food network. I bought cannoli forms and all of the ingredients to make them from a Homemade Cannoli recipe from Foodnetwork. Well, favor good but not quite what I was looking for. I ended up with very few shells to fill with the cream and the cream was not the texture I was looking for from the Italian Market that we enjoy. So I played around with the recipe and came up with AMAZING Filling which I have used with premade cannoli shells that I purchase for the Italian Market. Sadly the Italian Market went out of business so I was back to the drawing board with the shells. Check out my attempt at an alternative Choffy Lace Cannoli Tarts shells in a feature blog.

Ingredients

1/4 cup cornstarch
3/4 cup sugar
1 cup heavy whipping cream
1/2 tsp dehydrated orange peels
1 cup mascarpone cheese
2 cup part skim ricotta cheese
1 tsp vanilla

Directions

In a heavy sauce pan combined cornstarch and sugar and whisk together. Stir in whipping cream and orange peels. Cook over medium heat stirring constantly until it starts to boil approximately 5 minutes. Add in mascarpone cheese and stir until completely smooth. Add in ricotta cheese and stir continually until thick and the whisk leaves tracks as you stir.

Variation Cannoli Pie

Ingredients

2 Frozen Pie Shells
1 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream
12 oz Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips
1 batch cannoli cream.

Directions

Preheat shell according to package directions.

In a heavy sauce pan over medium heat warm combined whipping cream and chocolate chips. Whisk together until smooth.  Divide in to each of the pie shells and spread evenly over the bottom and sides. Allow to set completely (approximately 20 minutes). Fill will cannoli cream and refrigerate for 2 to 3 hours before serving.

 

 

 

Choffy Lace Cookies

This cookies were inspired by my friend from New Zealand. She told me she was missing Anzac Biscuits from home. So I research them, found Golden Syrup at a Polynesian Market and made them for her. They were delicious, but I wanted to make them my own. I played around with a few failed attempts, but this are a family favorite.

Ingredients

1 ½ cup unsweetened shredded coconut
1 cup oat flour (wheat or white flour works as well)
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup rolled oats
¾ cup Choffy Grinds (post brew)
½ cup butter
¼ cup brewed Choffy
¼ Corn Syrup
1 tsp baking soda
More Choffy if needed
1 cup White Chocolate Chips

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper (these biscuits can be quite sticky, so I really recommend the parchment paper if you have it).

Add the coconut, flour, brown sugar, rolled oats, and Choffy grinds to the large mixing bowl and stir to combine.

In a small saucepan, melt the butter, brewed Choffy, and corn syrup together, boiling. Remove from heat. Add the soda into the melted butter mixture. (the soda will cause the mixture to bubble and expand).

Pour the melted butter mixture into the dry ingredients and stir till well combined. If the mixture seems to dry, add a little more brewed Choffy (I added about a tablespoon).

Drop the dough in heaping teaspoonful onto the lined baking sheet, leaving plenty of room for spreading (they will spread quite a bit).

Bake the biscuits in preheated oven for 10-15 minutes or until golden. Cook them closure to 10 minutes if you want them chewier then brittle.

Allow the biscuits to cool on the tray for a few minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Melt white chocolate chips in the Microwave on half power for 2 ½ to 3 ½ minutes. Drizzle melted white chocolate over the cooled cookies.