Halloween Candy Compost Cookie

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Whether you are reading this recipe pre-Halloween or post-Halloween, I'm sure you are drowning in some kind of fun size candy mayhem. I used all my will power to keep my house clean of candy during the month of October, but then I broke down and rushed to the store for a bag of Halloween candy after deciding on making these cookies. 

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I came up with the idea for these cookies after polling you all on insta last week. My baking itch was scratching and needing to be healed. I polled ginger cookies vs. some kind of compost cookie situation. Compost cookies won in a landslide, so here we are (I made ginger cookies too, because why not, but they were ugly and don't deserve to be posted).

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Compost cookies are what they sound like. Basically a dump of every ingredient you can get your hands on. This time, Halloween candy being the spotlight. You want to use chocolate based candies for this. Although after the fact I thought that a few candy corn would have been cute added to the mix. But no one really likes candy corn so sorry bout ya. 

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A mix of Milky Way (OG and Midnight), 3 Musketeers, and Twix got chopped up and added in. Along with pretzels, chopped pecans, butterscotch chips (my fave) and coffee grounds. *Pro tip, make sure and reserve a few of each ingredient to dot the tops of the balls of dough with. This way you can see them on top of the cookie after they bake instead of hiding. As seen below: broken pieces of candy bars and pretzels atop dough balls. A sprinkle of Maldon salt on top is also necessary, as always. 

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Halloween Candy Compost Cookie
yields 3 dozen cookies

Ingredients:
1 1/2 cups brown sugar
1/2 sugar
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
2 eggs
1 Tbsp. vanilla extract
3 cups flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup butterscotch chips
1/2 cup pecans, chopped
1/2 cup pretzels
1-2 Tbsp. coffee grounds (I went the full 2 b/c i'm all about the coffee flavor)
1 cup + 1/2 cup halloween candy, chopped ( i used a mix of Milk Way, Twix and 3 Musketeers)
Maldon Salt

Directions:
Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. 

In an electric mixer, cream your sugars and butter on medium for 2 minutes until light and fluffy.  Scrape the sides then add the eggs and vanilla and mix to combine.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add the flour mixture into the electric mixer and mix on low until the dough has come together. Stir in 1 cup of the candy, the coffee grounds, butterscotch chips, pecans and pretzels. 

Roll 2 tablespoon size balls. Place on a cookie sheet about 2 inches apart (8 balls per sheet). Now take the reserved 1/2 cup of candy and dot the top of each ball of dough with a chopped piece of candy and a sprinkle of Maldon Salt. This ensures for a pretty cookie with a peek of what's inside! *Important step* Freeze the balls of dough for 10 minutes prior to baking. This will help your cookie from spreading out too thin. 

Bake for 12 minutes then allow to cool. 

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Halloween candy is already wonderful as is, but why not bake it inside butter and sugar to make it even better???

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Happy Halloween!

Annie

The Only Key Lime Pie Recipe You Need

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Look no further. This is the last key lime pie recipe you need. I got the recipe from one of my best friend's moms. She adapted it from Joy of Cooking then I made of few tweaks myself. The results=absolute deliciousness. I'm not even going to ramble on about it, let's just cut to the chase.

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I'm a sucker for a good graham cracker crust. Especially this one. It has brown sugar it. I'm telling you it makes all the difference. 

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Key Lime Pie
yields 1, 9" pie

Crust Ingredients:
1 1/2 cups of graham crackers (about 10)
6 Tablespoons butter, melted
1/3 cup brown sugar 

Filling Ingredients:
14 ounce can sweetened condensed milk
4 large egg yolks
1/2 cup key lime juice (about 12 to 14 key limes)
zest of two key limes, plus extra for garnish
1 cup heavy whipping cream
1 Tbsp. sugar

Directions:
Preheat your over to 350 degrees. In a food processor, grind up your graham crackers until finely ground. Pour melted butter and brown sugar in and process together. Dump graham cracker grounds into a 9 inch pie pan. Using your hands spread them out and up the sides. Use the base of a measuring cup to help pat down the crust so that it is even. Use the side of the measuring cup to smooth the sides and make sure the crust is even all along the rim. Bake for 10 minutes.  

While your crust is baking whisk your egg yolks, sweetened condensed milk, key lime juice and key lime zest in a large mixing bowl. Once your crust is done, lower the oven temperature to 325 degrees. Pour in the filling and bake for 15 to 17 minutes. Let your pie cool completely before adding the whipped topping. 

Once the pie is cool, make the whipped cream. Using an electric mixer, mix heavy cream and sugar until stiff peaks form. Using a spatula, loosely top the pie with a hefty amount of whipped cream. Sprinkle with extra key lime zest. Serve cold. 

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Make it for you momma this weekend. I know she will love it. Mine sure does!

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Annie

Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookies

You guys, I did it. I finally found my perfect chocolate chip cookie recipe. If you have been reading this blog over the past few months you will know I have been on the hunt for a go-to CCC recipe. After several attempts, the test has come to an end. All previous recipes deserve some attention, but this one is it. Check out my recipe testing here, here and here

I wanted my cookies to be full of chocolate chips, just crisp on the bottom and around the edges, cooked but still soft on the inside, pretty to the eye and about 3 inches in diameter. I am pleased to tell you, I have achieved it. 

I also wanted my CCC to be no fuss. This was the most important aspect for my cookie recipe. No secret ingredients, no refrigerating, no weird flours, just a to the point recipe that makes excellent cookies. I promise you this recipe is easy and full of basic ingredients you already have in your cabinet. 

One of my favorite parts of these cookies is not having to wait for your butter to come to room temperature. Simply cut up 2 sticks of unsalted butter and melt it over low heat. You don't even have to let the melted butter cool, it just goes straight into the other ingredients. This is everythingggg.

One little spin I did do (which is optional) was chopping up my chocolate chips slightly. It's nothing crazy, I just like getting those little small flecks of chocolate throughout the dough. 

Keep reading for the steps on how to make these perfect, no fuss, chocolate chip cookies.

Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookies
yields 32 cookies, adapted from Seven Spoons by Tara O'Brady

Ingredients:
1 cup unsalted butter, diced
3 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1 1/4 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 cups light brown sugar, firmly packed
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
1 Tbsp. vanilla extract
12 ounces, semi-sweet chocolate chips, chopped (optional)*

Directions:
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Line baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside. 

Place a saucepan on low and melt your butter, stirring occasionally. Make sure the butter does not get too hot to where it sizzles or bubbles.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside. In a large bowl mix both sugars. Pour the melted butter into the bowl with the sugars and whisk until smooth. Add the eggs, one at a time, whisking to combine. Stir in the vanilla.

Slowly add the dry ingredients into the butter sugar mixture. I found a wooden spoon to be the easiest for this job. Once the dough has almost come together, but still a little floury, add the chocolate chips.
*I roughly chopped my chocolate chips, so I could get more chocolate in each bite. I also love those little shavings of chocolate sprinkled through the dough! 

Form 2-3 tablespoon size balls. I used a standard size cookie scoop, but would scoop twice, then roll them together to form one big ball of dough. Place them on a cookie sheet about 2 inches apart. Do not overcrowd the pans. I got 8 balls of dough on a pan, at most. 

Bake for 9-11 minutes, rotating the pan around halfway through. Bake until just slightly golden. 

They are almost bakery-perfect in my opinion. I was soooo happy with how they came out. I'll be coming back to this recipe from now on.

I solicited a lot of taste tasters to make sure I wasn't just dreaming on how perfect they were and all came back saying, "this is it." The test is over. These CCCs are here to stay!

I mean just look at that. Full of chocolate chips, a crispy bottom and perfectly cooked but still soft inside.

Now go make yourself some of the best chocolate chip cookies. Bonus points if you make them for your momma for Mother's Day this weekend. Please share with me on social media if you do! #takeabite

Annie

Chocolate Chunk Cookies Round 3

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So pretty right? Pretty and they taste good! Let's just sit and look at them for a second.....

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Okay moment's over. With lots of new things happening in 2016, some things stay the same. Such as the fact that I am still recipe testing to find my go-to chocolate chip cookie recipe. I've tackled four recipes (only two were worth posting) so far, and today includes another great contender. 

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A delicious recipe this is, they are adapted from an excellent cookbook I trust. I loved using chocolate chunks to give big bites of chocolate, and I think the sugar, butter, and vanilla ratios are pretty spot on. I will endorse this recipe, but I have to be honest and say these still aren't "the one." More testing to come, for your and my enjoyment. Linked here and here are my other two attempts.

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Chocolate Chunk Cookies
yields 30 cookies

Ingredients: 
1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
1/3 cup white sugar
1 large egg
1 tsp. vanilla extract
12 oz. chocolate chunks*

Directions:
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Line baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.

Whisk the flour, baking soda and salt together in a bowl. (I'm partial to whisking instead of sifting, much easier). In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugars on medium speed until smooth. Add the egg and vanilla and beat on low. Slowly add the dry ingredients and mix until everything is combines. Mix in the chocolate chunks. 

Using a cookie scoop, scoop generous size balls of dough onto prepared sheets, about 2 inches apart. Bake the cookies, 1 sheet at a time for 9-12 minutes or until lightly brown. 

*I'm usually a mini chip person, but I love using chunks in this recipe! They give the cookies fun height and shape from the big chunks.

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Annie

Snowball Cookies

So you know that scene in Elf when Buddy gets into the snowball fight and within seconds has a whole pile of perfectly rolled snowballs? Ya so I don't really know where I was going with this except that he makes snowballs, and this post is about snowball cookies. 

Some people call them Mexican Wedding Cookies, but if you are making them around the holidays they must be called snowball cookies. Last week Oklahoma got a tiny amount of flurries but besides that we have been sitting pretty in the 60s...not okay. Let it snow, let is snow, let it snow!

Snowball Cookies (Mexican Wedding Cookies) adapted from The Domestic Rebel
yields 40 cookies

Ingredients:
2 sticks butter, softened
1/4 cup white sugar
1/8 cup brown sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
pinch of cinnamon
2 cups ground pecans (I bought chopped and grounded them finer in a food processer) 
2 cups flour
powdered sugar

Directions:
Preheat your oven to 375 degrees F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.

In an electric mixer, beat together the butter, white and brown sugars until fluffy, about 1 minute. Beat in the vanilla and cinnamon to combine. Lastly, add in the ground pecans and the flour until the dough comes together. The dough may be crumbly, but using a spatula or your hands work to bring it together. 

Using a cookie dough scoop, roll Tablespoon-sized balls of dough and place them about 1 inch apart on the baking sheets. Bake for 10-13 minutes, rotating pans halfway through baking time to ensure an even cook. Allow the cookies to cool on the cookie sheets for about 10 minutes or until cooler to the touch. Immediately roll the cookies into powdered sugar to coat.

Once cookies are cooled, send them through another light roll in the powdered sugar for a second coat. Then serve! Cookies can be stored airtight at room temperature for up to a week.

    

 

 

Annie