Recipes, sweet tooth

Brownie Shortbread Cups

These brownie shortbread cups will hit all your cravings… both buttery soft shortbread and gooey fudge brownies. You can have the best of both worlds.

These brownie shortbread bars have two layers. The bottom layer is a simple shortbread crust made from little more than butter, sugar, and flour.The crumbly cookie crust comes together in a single bowl before being patted out in a muffin pan. While the crust bakes slightly in the oven, prepare the brownie batter, you can also use your favorite brownie mix box. After baking in the oven, the cups are ready to devour. The combination of shortbread and brownies is pretty phenomenal if you ask me

Let’s get to baking!

INGREDIENTS

For the crust:

  • ¾ cup unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1–1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

For the brownie:

  • ¾ cup unsalted butter
  • 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1–1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 6 tablespoons dark cocoa powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt

OR

2 boxes your favorite brownie mix and the ingredients needed

INSTRUCTIONS

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees and line an 8 or 9” square baking pan with parchment paper or a muffin tin with cupcake liners. Lightly grease with cooking spray and set aside.

Begin by preparing the crust. 

In a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, cream the butter and granulated sugar until smooth. Stir in the vanilla. Add the flour and salt and stir just until combined to crumbs. Gently press the mixture down flat into the bottom of the prepared pan and bake in the preheated oven for 20 minutes until set. 

In the meantime, begin making the brownie filling.

In a medium saucepan over low heat, gently melt together the butter, chocolate chips, and sugar, stirring regularly to melt evenly and prevent scorching the chocolate. Once melted and smooth, set aside. 

In a large bowl, beat the eggs on medium speed with a mixer until they lighten in color and fluff up, about 2-3 minutes. Gently stir in the chocolate mixture. Add the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt, stirring just until combined. 

Pour the batter on top of the prepared shortbread and smooth. 

Increase the oven heat to 350 and bake for an additional 30-33 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out only with a couple of small brownie crumbs. Do not overbake. 

Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely prior to slicing.

Cookies, Recipes

Chocolate Espresso Biscotti

My Meme and Papa loved Biscotti!

Do not get scared away from making these classic, twice-baked Italian cookies at home! Biscotti cookies are incredibly easy to make and can be customized with your favorite add-ins. Biscotti remind me of my grandparents, Meme and Papa. They would always dip a biscotti in their coffee. If you’ve ever had biscotti before, you already know that it’s not soft at all; instead it’s hard and crunchy. Perfect for dipping into your morning coffee or a glass of milk.  See I just gave you an excuse to eat cookies for breakfast!

Tonight, I wanted to make a cookie that I could drizzle my leftover orange chai cream cheese from my Orange Chocolate Chai Roll so I created this Chocolate Espresso Biscotti recipe.  Let me tell you, the batter was to die for! I seriously could have eaten the entire bowl! Rich in chocolate and espresso… the perfect combination! You can either drizzle the tops of these with the orange chia cream cheese, melted chocolate or just eat them as are. Honestly they are that versatile. 

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 ¾  cups plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour, spooned into measuring cup and leveled-off
  • ¼  cup plus 2 tablespoons natural unsweetened cocoa powder, such as Hershey’s
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ¾  teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons Espresso instant coffee, such as Café Bustelo
  • 1 stick (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • ¾  cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

INSTRUCTIONS

Preheat the oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt.

In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, 1-2 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula. 

Add the eggs, one at a time, scraping down the bowl and mixing well after each addition. 

Beat in the vanilla. 

Add the dry ingredients And stir on low speed until just combined.

Dust a work surface with cocoa powder. 

Using a rubber spatula, scrape the sticky dough out onto the work surface and dust the top of the dough lightly with cocoa powder. 

Using your hands, shape the dough into a rough ball (if it’s still too sticky, dust with a bit more cocoa powder) and cut into quarters. 

Form the dough pieces into four short logs by rolling back and forth. Place the logs onto the prepared baking sheet and shape into longer logs about 3/4-inch high and 2 inches wide. 

Allow enough space for the logs to spread a few inches while they bake. 

Bake for about 30 minutes, until firm to the touch. 

Let the biscotti logs cool on the pan for about 5 minutes, or until just cool enough to touch (if you wait any longer, the biscotti will be difficult to cut); then, using a sharp knife, slice the logs on the diagonal into 3/4-inch slices (I do this right on the baking sheet). They will crumble just a bit; don’t worry about it. 

Turn the biscotti on their sides (so that the cut sides are down) and place back in the oven for 10 minutes to dry and crisp up. 

Let cool on the pan for a few minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. 

Once cool, drizzle with your choice or leave as is. 

Cookies, Recipes

Chocolate Peppermint Cookies

A soft and chewy, chocolate cookie topped a chocolate mint drizzle and a sprinkling of crushed candy canes. 

Chocolate and peppermint is a popular combo, especially during the holiday months. This is another recipe that I created for my brother. He loves chocolate and peppermint! I basically took my red velvet cookie recipe that I adapted from Paula Deen, and just switched out cake box mix and the topping!

These chocolate cookies are soft, chewy, and a bit fudgy in the center. I love the addition of the peppermint flavor because it really awakens the cookie. Crushed peppermint candies make a festive, crunchy topping for these festive cookies. They are the perfect holiday cookie and  will get you in the holiday spirit ASAP. Perfect for cookie exchanges, holiday gatherings or alongside a cup of iced cold milk. 

Ingredients 

  • 1 (18 oz) box moist chocolate cake mix
  • 1 (8 oz) package room temperature cream cheese
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 
  • 1 egg
  • 1 stick room temperature butter

Chocolate Drizzle 

  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, melted
  • 1 teaspoon peppermint extract 
  • 2 large candy canes, crushed

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 350 °F. In a large bowl with an electric mixer, cream the cream cheese and butter until smooth. Beat in the egg. 

Then beat in the vanilla extract. Beat in the cake mix. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours to firm up so that you can roll the batter into balls. 

Roll the chilled batter into tablespoon sized balls. 

Place on an ungreased cookie sheet, 2 inches apart. Bake for 12 minutes. 

The cookies will remain soft and gooey. 

Cool completely 

Melt semi sweet chocolate in a double boiler (or in the microwave, just be careful to stir frequently so chocolate doesn’t burn) until it’s smooth.

Add peppermint extract and whisk together. 

Drizzle a dollop of semi-sweet chocolate over each cookie.

Sprinkle a few pieces of crushed candy cane on top of the chocolate cookie centers while the chocolate is still warm. Let chocolate set for 30 minutes to an hour.

Cookies, Recipes

Triple the Chocolate Cookies

Chocolate Lovers, this cookie is for you!

These cookies are so easy to make and will satisfy every chocolate craving!

For these cookies, I start with natural unsweetened cocoa powder, then add in milk chocolate chips and my favorite white chocolate chunks. I love the triple effect from the cocoa powder, chocolate chips and white chocolate chunks- it adds an extra depth of richness.

You could also use semi-sweet chips instead of milk chocolate or dark chocolate instead of white chocolate. Seriously, use your favorite chocolate!

Here’s the gist on how to make these Chocolate lover cookies! 

CREAM. Using an electric mixer, cream together the butter and sugars. Mix in the eggs and vanilla until smooth.

MIX. In a separate bowl, whisk together all of the dry ingredients. Slowly pour the flour mixture into the wet mixture and mix until just combined. Then fold in the chocolate chips and white chocolate chunks,  chill the dough in the fridge for 15-20 minutes.

BAKE. Using a medium cookie scoop, scoop the dough onto a parchment lined baking sheet. Bake in the oven at 350°F for 8 to 10 minutes, or even until edges are slightly crisp and the center is soft.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup packed light or dark brown sugar
  • 1 large egg, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
  • 1/2 cup + 2 Tablespoons natural unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon milk 
  • 1 ½ cups chopped white chocolate bar, 2 bars
  • 1 cup milk chocolate chips

Instructions

In a large bowl using a hand-held or stand mixer, beat the butter, granulated sugar, and brown sugar together on medium high speed until fluffy and light in color. 

Beat in the egg and vanilla extract. 

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

With the mixer running on low speed, slowly pour into the wet ingredients. 

Beat on low until combined. The cookie dough will be quite thick. 

Beat in the milk, then the chocolate chips and chunks. 

Cover dough tightly with plastic wrap and chill for 15-20 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 350°F. 

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper .

Scoop and roll into balls. Arrange 2-3 inches apart on the baking sheets. 

The cookie dough is sticky, I like to keep a cup of water next to the bowl and dip the scoop in to help the dough from sticking. 

Bake the cookies for 11-12 minutes or until the edges appear set and the centers still look soft. Allow to cool completely. 

Cookies, Recipes

Espresso Chocolate Cookies

I love the way coffee enhances the flavor of chocolate, which is why I decided to add some espresso powder to my chocolate cookie recipe. These cookies are a perfect companion for morning coffee or after dinner drinks. To get a nice, dark coffee flavor I used a Café Bustelo® espresso coffee.  But you could use any coffee or espresso powder.

You definitely want to leave a few of these for Santa. They will give him the pep he needs to continue delivering presents!

Ingredients 

  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate baking chips
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs room temperature
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 ½ teaspoon espresso powder
  • 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, for topping the cookies

Instructions 

Preheat the oven to 325°F.

Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.

In a medium microwave-safe bowl, add the semi-sweet baking chips and butter. Heat in the microwave for 15 seconds. Stir and then heat for another 15 seconds. Stir. If the chocolate is mostly melted do not heat again. (If the chocolate seizes or hardens a bit it is ok.) Set aside.

Add sugar, eggs, milk, and vanilla to a large bowl. Whisk well until they are completely incorporated, light, and airy.

Add the slightly warm chocolate to the egg mixture and whisk continuously until fully combined and smooth.

Add the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, salt, and espresso powder. Stir well to incorporate, but don’t over mix. The mixture should be very loose, just like a brownie mix.

Set in the freezer for 15 minutes or refrigerated for at least 2 hours. 

Using a 2 tablespoon, scoop out balls and place on the prepared baking sheet. .

Press 5-9 chocolate chips on top of each cookie and press down slightly. 

Bake for 11-14 minutes. 

Allow cookies to cool on the pan for at least 3 minutes before moving.

Cookies, Recipes

Red Wine Espresso Truffles

These truffles have all my favorite flavors in one…Chocolate, Espresso & Red Wine!

Get ready to add this easy recipe to your holiday dessert list! Because is there anything better than red wine and chocolate?! 

It’s the red wine that makes these dark chocolate truffles stand out from all the rest. Scout & Cellar Gallivant Cabernet Sauvignon adds flavors of black raspberry and currant to the richness of the chocolate and espresso! 

Don’t be afraid of the fancy sound that truffles bring. 

All you do is mix the ingredients, refrigerate, scoop into balls, roll in cocoa powder and refrigerate again before serving. 

So pour yourself a glass of Scout & Cellar Gallivant Cabernet Sauvignon, and let’s make some truffles! 

Ingredients 

  • 8 ounces bittersweet or semi-sweet chocolate, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 5 tablespoons dry red wine, such as Scout & Cellar Gallivant Cabernet Sauvignon
  • 2 teaspoons Confectioners Powdered Sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon espresso powder
  • 4+ tablespoons Cocoa powder, for dusting

Instructions 

Place chopped chocolate in a large mixing bowl. 

Heat cream in a small saucepan over medium high, just until it boils. 

Pour hot cream directly into the bowl with chocolate, then add wine, powdered sugar, vanilla and espresso powder. Gently whisk the mixture together until chocolate is smooth and melted. (If chocolate does not melt completely, place it over a saucepan of simmering water, stirring until it melts completely.) 

Cover bowl, then place it in refrigerator to set, 1 to 2 hours.

Line a baking sheet with parchment or wax paper Pour about 4 tablespoons of cocoa powder into a wide plate or pie dish. 

With a small scoop or spoon, scoop chocolate, place into the bowl with the cocoa powder and roll it into a ball. 

Place on the prepared baking sheet, then repeat with remaining chocolate.

Refrigerate truffles for 30-60 minutes to set. 

Serve slightly chilled or at room temperature.

http://www.scoutandcellar.com/whiskawaykitchen