Monday, September 1, 2014

Biscoff White Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies


I don't think I will ever get sick of Biscoff. I know it's not healthy to eat for breakfast twice a week on my toast, but it tastes so much better than peanut butter! I need to stop buying it, but it's really really hard not to! I might need an intervention. 

I saw these cookies on Sally's Baking Addiction, and was so excited to make them. They turned out pretty much as good as I expected, but I'm not a huge white chocolate chip fan. So next time I might take those out.


Biscoff White Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

  • 3/4 cup (95g) all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 cup (115g) unsalted butter, melted
  • 3/4 cup (150g) dark brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 cup (194g) Biscoff spread
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 cups (160g) quick oats
  • 1 and 1/2 cups (270g) white chocolate chips or chunks

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350F degrees. Line two large cookie sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. Set aside.

Toss the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt together in a large bowl. Set aside.

In a medium bowl, whisk the melted butter and brown sugar together until no brown sugar lumps remain. Whisk in the egg, then the Biscoff until combined. Finally, whisk in the vanilla. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix together with a large spoon or rubber spatula. The dough will be very soft and slick. Fold in the oats and 1 and 1/4 cups white chocolate, reserving the remaining 1/4 cup for later. The cookie dough will be thick and heavy.

Roll the dough into balls, about 3 Tablespoons of dough each. I highly suggest using a cookie scoop to make it easier. Place 8 balls of dough onto each cookie sheet.

Bake the cookies for 11-12 minutes. The cookies will look very soft and underbaked. They will continue to bake on the cookie sheet. Remove from the oven and lightly press down on each cookie to slightly flatten, since the cookies will not spread all the way in the oven. Press a piece or two of the remaining white chocolate chips/chunks into each cookie as described above in the post. Allow to cool on the cookie sheet for 10 minutes before moving to a wire rack to cool completely.
Cookies stay soft and fresh for 7 whole days at room temperature. Baked cookies and/or cookie dough balls may be frozen up to 3 months.

*Note about the oats:
Do not use old-fashioned style oats (aka whole oats) in this cookie recipe.
You need quick oats, which are more finely ground (and smaller) whole oats. I usually only keep whole oats in my pantry. When I need quick oats, I pulse whole oats in the food processor or blender 4-5 times to make homemade quick oats.


Summer is coming to an end sadly, and it's JUST now getting hot outside. I can't believe it! It's like it didn't even happen, and there's already stuff out for Halloween and fall and Pumpkin Spice everything.

I got to go to Lollapalooza this year! I wanted to go while we still live here and wouldn't have to make a special trip for it. I saw lots of good bands, including Bombay Bicycle Club, Chvrches, and Zedd! I was the only one who wanted to see Zedd, so I felt old standing in the crowd of 18 year olds, but I didn't mind cause that music is so fun :)

I was really impressed how organized Lollapalooza was, and how big it was! They even had an area with hammocks for people like me who get so tired of standing at concerts.


One of the main things I was excited for was the Lobster Corndogs! They are a Lolla special that Graham Elliot has every year, and it lived up to the hype. There was plenty of lobster to corn breading ratio, and the sauce was a good, creamy addition.



Let's see, so I also got to go on a boat! My work had an afternoon outing on the lake, and it was so lovely and relaxing. I love going out on a sailboat or canoeing.

We went to see the Chicago Symphony Orchestra perform the score to LOTR! It was at Ravinia, and they had a huge lawn area where we brought chairs and food and had a picnic while they played the movie. It was really a cool thing to experience. I just wish we could've seen the orchestra better, but that's what we get for getting the cheap lawn seats :)


It's officially my last few days of being in my 20's! Can you believe it? I don't feel like I'll be 30. So I'm making a few friends go out for my birthday so we can dance all night and get it out of my system before I'm too old!

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Bananas Foster Cupcakes and NYC Cookies!

I always bake things that I find on other people's blogs, and never end up posting about them! I'm a slacker. But sometimes they don't turn out as good as I'd hoped, so then I don't feel like sharing a recipe that I'm ehh about.

I made these Bananas Foster Cupcakes from Cookies and Cups blog a few weeks ago, and they were SOOOO good! The frosting was something that I could have just eaten with a spoon. So much sugar.

I think Bananas Foster is one of my favorite kinds of desserts, like when we go to a restaurant and they have Bananas Foster cake or something like it, I always want to get it. Caramelized bananas are the best.

I took these to work, and they were pretty messy once they sat out all day, but people still took their half of a half to try.

Bananas Foster Cupcakes


    Brown Sugar Cupcakes
  • 3/4 cup butter, room temperature
  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • Bananas Foster Frosting
  • 1/2 cup mashed banana (1 large banana)
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1 cup butter
  • 5 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 Tbsp dark brown sugar
  • 1 Tbsp cinnamon
  • 2 tsp dark rum (optional)
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • Garnish with banana slices and caramel sauce.
How to Make
    Cupcakes
  1. Preheat oven to 350°
  2. Beat butter on high until soft, about 30 seconds.
  3. Add sugar. Beat on medium-high until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
  4. Add eggs one at a time, beat for 30 seconds after each.
  5. Whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a bowl.
  6. Measure out milk and vanilla together.
  7. Add about a third of the dry mixture and half milk mixture in alternating portions beginning and ending with dry mixture until incorporated and smooth.
  8. Bake 15-20 minutes until cupcake springs back when pushed or toothpick comes out clean.
  9. Let cool before frosting cupcakes.
  10. Frosting
  11. Mash banana in a small bowl with lemon juice.
  12. In bowl of stand mixer beat butter for 2 minutes. Add in banana and beat for 1-2 more minutes until well mixed. Add powdered sugar one cup at a time on low speed. Add in brown sugar, cinnamon, rum and vanilla.
  13. Turn mixer up to medium and beat for an additional 2 minutes.
  14. Assembly
  15. Spread or pipe frosting onto cooled cupcakes.
  16. Garnish with a banana slice and drizzle with caramel.
Recipe taken from Cookies and Cups Blog 

I went to New York City for work the other weekend, which was kind of exciting since it was my first traveling for work experience. Our flight didn't arrive until 1am because of bad weather, so I hadn't eaten any dinner and was starving when I got to the hotel!! So I ordered the cheapest thing on the room service menu, which was tomato soup and a sliver of grilled cheese. The soup was ehh, but the grilled cheese was so delicious! I wish I had gotten the full sandwich instead, but it was 1am so I probably didn't need all that in my belly since I was going straight to sleep.

 They had some of the softest robes at the hotel.... I wish I could've brought one home with me.

Kevin!!!! Haha I just always think of Home Alone when I see the Plaza Hotel.

 This was the view of Central Park from our office. Pretty nice to look at while you're working!

For lunch, our co-workers took us to Tao. It was so dark inside! And the giant Budda was really cool. It was Restaurant Week so I got the 3 course meal for $25, awesome deal! The Chocolate pot dessert was the best course, followed by the Lobster Dumpling soup (didn't get a picture though), and it had the BEST broth, I was pretty much drinking it up. The sushi main course was just your typical sushi. Nothing special.

For dinner, we went to Villagio on the Park, which is a bustling Italian restaurant. It was pretty yummy, and of course we got 3 desserts to share!

I made sure to visit Levain Bakery while I was there! I went before work and grabbed some of the chocolate brioche and muffins for our breakfast, but of course I also got some chocolate chip walnut and chocolate peanut butter cookies for later.


 It's so tiny inside!

I really wanted to eat a cookie right then while it was fresh and warm, but it was just 8am and had all the other breakfast treats to eat, so I saved them. But now I am kind of regretting it! They were still just as delicious after, I just had to heat it up in the microwave a bit.

My brother and sister-in-law met me for lunch, and we had some NY style pizza and cookies from the Momofuku Milk Bar. I was also pretty excited about trying these cookies since I've heard so much about the place!

I got 2 cookies to take home with me, because I was still pretty full from the pizza.

My brother got the cereal milk soft serve ice cream, and I was really interested to try it! It had a very distinct flavor, which was confusing. It was weird at first, but then it was good, just like eating Captain Crunch cereal.


I'm not sure I could live in NYC, there are just people EVERYWHERE, but it's nice to go for a few days. I wouldn't mind walking through Central Park every day.