Peanut Butter and Honey Popcorn

During exam time I find myself on the hunt for snack food. I’m ravenous for it! The more sweet and salty the better – anything to get my mind off of studying, really.

With this massive snack craving, and with little time to make anything too wild, I thought of putting some of my favorite flavours together on some air-popped popcorn.

It was a good idea. Such a good idea that this popcorn lasted only two days! The peanut butter and honey come together to make an almost caramel-like consistency on the popcorn. I’m in heaven.

To begin, place wax paper on a large baking sheet and spray with baking spray. Pop your popcorn either with an air popper, on the stove top, or with bagged popcorn.

Place popcorn in a large bowl.

In a small saucepan, combine sugar and honey. Bring to a rolling boil.

Remove from heat and stir in peanut butter until smooth.

Add vanilla.

Pour peanut butter syrup over popcorn and stir to coat.

HELLO!

Spread out on to a cookie sheet to cool for a few minutes.

Enjoy!

Peanut Butter and Honey Popcorn
Makes 8 cups (serves 6-8)

Ingredients:
8 cups popped popcorn (air popped or unbuttered microwave popcorn)
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup peanut butter
1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Directions:
Place wax paper on a large baking sheet and spray with baking spray.

Pop your popcorn either with an air popper, on the stove top, or with bagged popcorn.

Place popcorn in a large bowl.

In a small saucepan, combine sugar and honey. Bring to a rolling boil.

Remove from heat and stir in peanut butter until smooth. Add vanilla.

Pour peanut butter syrup over popcorn and stir to coat.

Spread out on to a cookie sheet to cool for a few minutes and enjoy!

Advertisements

Double Fudge Oreo Cookies

When I was 19 I never thought that at 24 I would still be writing exams. I remember finishing my undergrad degree and thinking the best part of it was that exams were behind me. I was FREE! But life never goes the way you think it will.

Last September I enrolled in a new College program in hopes that a Biotechnology diploma might make me a bit more hireable. So even though my life has gone in a different direction then I had planned originally, the end goal is really the same. I’m happy. This summer I’m in Canada and can spend more time with my family, I get to do a marathon in my home city on a known route, and I get to spend all the time in the world with my partner. What else could a girl ask for really?

Cookies you say? I agree! I created some magic in my kitchen recently. Remember these? Yeah, I added cocoa and fudge to that recipe to make a chewy, heavenly, cookie-baby. I’m in love.

To make these add butter, sugar, eggs and vanilla to a large bowl.

Cream them together until fluffy.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt and mix until combined. Add flour mixture to egg mixture and mix until well combined. Fold in chocolate chips..

…and crushed Oreos.

Refrigerate dough for at least 2-3 hours. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350, roll into balls and set on baking sheet.

Bake at 350 for 10-12 minutes. Let cool completely.

Enjoy! I sure did…a little too much.

Double Fudge Oreo Cookies
makes about 3 dozen cookies
Recipe lightly adapted from How Sweet It Is

Ingredients:
1 cup unsalted butter (or 2 sticks), at room temperature
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups flour
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup chocolate chips
1 cup (9 oreos) chopped Oreo cookies

Directions:
In a large bowl, cream butter, sugar, eggs and vanilla until fluffy.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt and mix until combined.

Add flour mixture to egg mixture and mix until well combined.

Fold in chocolate chips and crushed oreos.

Refrigerate dough for 2-4 hours (or more).

When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350, roll into balls and set on baking sheet.

Bake at 350 for 10-12 minutes. Let cool completely.

Gingerbread Granola

As much as I love trying out new things, I know what I like in granola. I like oats (obviously), almonds, honey, and sometimes raisins. It works for me.

But I recently stumbled upon this recipe for gingerbread granola and it caught my eye right away! It packs a spicy punch that reminds of of Christmas morning. Interesting choice with this warm weather we’ve been having, but I knew I needed to try it.

This goes great with plain or vanilla greek yogurt, milk, or ice cream. It’s such a nice switch-up to my regular granola and I love having it as a snack after a run. Speaking of which, I JUST finished a 10 km race! I finished in 46:48 – a personal best for a short 10 km race, so I’m ecstatic!

Anyway, back to granola! To make this whisk together molasses, brown sugar, honey, and oil.

In a separate bowl mix salt, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, oats, raisins, coconut and nuts until evenly mixed.

Stir in molasses.

Spread onto two large rimmed baking sheets sprayed with baking spray. Bake at 325ºF for 25-30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until oats are golden brown (if cooking both sheets at once, swap positions half way through baking time).

Let cool completely before storing in an airtight container, and enjoy!

Gingerbread Granola
Makes 10 servings
Recipe lightly adapted from Kitchen Simplicity

Ingredients:
1/3 cup molasses
2 tablespoons canola oil
1/4 cup brown sugar (optional for extra sweetness)
1/4 cup honey
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
3 cups rolled oats
1 cup pecans (or walnuts), chopped
1/2 cup raisins

Directions:
Whisk together molasses, brown sugar, honey, and oil.

In a separate bowl mix salt, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, oats, raisins, coconut and nuts until evenly mixed. Stir in molasses.

Spread onto two large rimmed baking sheets sprayed with baking spray. Bake at 325ºF for 25-30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until oats are golden brown (if cooking both sheets at once, swap positions half way through baking time).

Let cool completely before storing in an airtight container.

Banana Sweet Potato Bread

Guess what I got for Easter?

A KitchenAid stand mixer!! Yes, for Easter. My man is full of surprises, and decided to take me on an Easter egg hunt to find it. Not your normal Easter egg hunt though. I had to solve a clue that lead me to the next clue, and so on. Here are some examples of the clues I got:

CLUE: The wavelength of light between 300 MHz and 300 GHz.
ANSWER: Microwave
The next clue was in the microwave, and yes, I had to Google this answer.

CLUE: “Turns out they were all dead the whole time…”
ANSWER: Lost.
The next clue was in the DVD box.

CLUE: “What ingredient fo all of these recipes have in common? 1. Jamie Oliver’s Crunchy
Garlic Chicken, 2. Joy The Baker’s Chocolate Peanut Butter Ball Cookies and 3. Pioneer Woman’s Fancy Mac & Cheese”.
ANSWER: Flour
The next clue was in the flour bag.

As you can tell, this hunt wasn’t easy. I EARNED that stand mixer! Not only did I have to use the internet for half the clues, but each clue came with an envelope with a letter on it, and I had to “unscramble” the words at the end. It ended up saying “My Closet”. The stand mixer was waiting for me in there. HURRAY!!

So naturally I baked in the stand mixer the next day, and can’t believe how easy it is to use! I’m in love with a machine…I’ve heard warnings of this happening.

I made bread. Are you as obsessed with banana bread as I am? I can’t get enough of the stuff and I love trying new combinations of flavours with it. This is certainly a new favorite of mine. It’s filled with bananas and sweet potato puree that meld together like a puzzle piece. Who knew these two were meant for each other? I dig it.

To begin, make your sweet potato puree. First roast 1 large sweet potato for about 1 hour in a 350*F. After the sweet potato is soft and cooked, let it cool for about 20 minutes. Peel the sweet potato and place it into a food processor until smooth and has the consistency of canned pumpkin. Add banana and puree again.

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Spray a loaf pan with baking spray.

Put the puree in a bowl, add the sugar and oil and beat together until fluffy.

Add the eggs and vanilla and beat until fluffy.

In a separate bowl, combine all of the dry ingredients.

Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and combine into a batter.

Add the milk and mix in.

Aww, yeah.

Pour the batter into the loaf pan.

Bake the bread for 1 hour 20 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean.

Enjoy!

Banana Sweet Potato Bread
Recipe adapted from Heather Christo
Makes 1 loaf

Ingredients:
1 cup very ripe banana, mashed (2 1/2 bananas)
1 cup sweet potato puree (1 large sweet potato)
1 cup sugar
½ cup oil
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1 ¾ cups flour
1 ½ tsp cinnamon
1 tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
½ tsp ginger
1/4 cup milk

Directions:
To make your sweet potato puree, roast 1 large sweet potato for about 1 hour in a 350*F oven. After the sweet potato is soft and cooked, let it cool for about 20 minutes. Peel the sweet potato and place it into a food processor until smooth and has the consistency of canned pumpkin.

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Spray a loaf pan with baking spray.

In the bowl of a standing mixer, beat together the banana and sweet potato until smooth and fluffy.

Add the sugar and oil and beat together until fluffy.

Add the eggs and vanilla and beat until fluffy.

In a separate bowl, combine all of the dry ingredients.

Add the dry ingredients to the mixer and combine into a batter. Add the milk and mix in.

Pour the batter into the loaf pan.

Bake the bread for 1 hour 20 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean.

Slice and Enjoy!

Cadbury Creme Egg Cupcakes

This Easter treat was destined to be in my kitchen.

I freaking LOVE Cadbury Creme Eggs. So, when I saw this idea on My Baking Addiction’s blog a while ago I bookmarked it right away. I mean, Cadbury Creme Egg cupcakes?? Yes, please.

These chocolate cupcakes are stuffed with a gooey mini Cadbury Creme Egg, and topped with the best buttercream my face has ever tasted. Jamie, I love you and your genius ideas.

My Easter plans this year are pretty basic. I’m staying home with the boy and the two of us are going to have an Easter dinner for two – with an Easter egg hunt in the mix as well. We act like we’re 8 sometimes. Perhaps that explains my obsession with sweets? Whatev’s, I’m a sugar addict and proud of it!

To make these cupcakes, first mix up the batter of your favorite chocolate boxed cake mix (enough for 24 cupcakes). I used Betty Crocker’s chocolate fudge.

Scoop batter into paper liner ⅔ of the way full.

Place one frozen Mini Cadbury Creme Egg into the middle of each cupcake. Use a spatula to spread the batter over the egg.

Bake according to the recipe you are using. Allow cupcakes to cool completely.

While your cupcakes are cooking, make your buttercream. Again, I used My Baking Addiction’s recipe. Remove about 1 cup of buttercream from the mixing bowl and dye it yellow.

Assemble your piping bag fitted with a large tip and pipe a large circle around the perimeter of the cupcake.

Fill in the center of the circle with the yellow buttercream.

Top with a Mini Cadbury Cream Egg.

Enjoy! And have a happy Easter!

Cadbury Creme Egg Cupcakes
Recipe Taken from My Baking Addiction
Yield: 24 cupcakes

Ingredients:
24 paper cupcake liners
Batter for 24 cupcakes. I used Betty Crocker’s chocolate fudge box mix. You can also use your favorite chocolate cupcake recipe.
48 Mini Cadbury Creme Eggs (24 frozen).
1 batch of buttercream frosting
yellow dye
Large Round piping tip or snip the end off of a piping bag.

Directions:
1. Scoop batter into paper liner ⅔ of the way full. Place one frozen Mini Cadbury Creme Egg into the middle of each cupcake. Use a spatula to spread the batter over the egg.

2. Bake according to the recipe you are using. Allow cupcakes to cool completely.

3. While your cupcakes are cooking, make your buttercream. Again, I used My Baking Addiction’s recipe.

4. Remove about 1 cup of buttercream from the mixing bowl and dye it yellow.

5. Assemble your piping bag fitted with a large tip and pipe a large circle around the perimeter of the cupcake.

6. Fill in the center of the circle with the yellow buttercream and top with a Mini Cadbury Cream Egg.

Note: Freezing the 12 eggs keeps them from completely vanishing inside the baked cake.