‘scotcheroos

In a large pot over medium heat, combine 1 cup of light corn syrup, 1 cup of granulated sugar and 1 cup creamy peanut butter. Remove from heat and mix in 2 teaspoons vanilla extract and 6 cups Rice Krispies. Stir to combine. When thoroughly combined, spread into a parchment paper lined 13 x 9 pan.

While the Rice Krispies mixture begins to cool, melt 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips and 1 1/2 cups butterscotch chips in a microwave safe dish. Start with 20 second bursts in the mircowave, and stir with a fork between heatings. When the mixture is smooth and warmed throughout, pour over and spread atop the cereal mixture.

Allow to cool approximately 35 minutes and either serve warm, or chill in the fridge to make it easier to cut and portion.

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Mayan Brownie Cookies

Preheat your oven to 350*.

In a small saucepan over low-medium heat, melt 4 tablespoons of unsalted butter. Add 8 ounces of semi-sweet chocolate (I use chocolate chips for ease). Stir often.

When fully melted, add 2 tablespoons cocoa powder, 1 teaspoon chili powder and 2 teaspoons cinnamon. Whisk until completely combined. Let cool slightly while you prepare the rest of the ingredients.

In a stand mixer or with a handheld mixer, beat 3 eggs, 1 1/4 cup sugar and 1 teaspoon kosher salt until white and fluffy (3-5 minutes). Add 2 teaspoons baker’s extract (or vanilla; baker’s extract is a little more stable in the heat) and 1 tablespoon olive oil. Mix until combined. Add the warm chocolate mixture and stir until combined. Mix in 1/2 cup flour and 3/4 teaspoon of baking powder.

By hand, fold in about 5 ounces of semi-sweet chocolate chips.

Bake heaping tablespoons about 2″ apart for 14-17 minutes.

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Graham’s Cookies

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To be clear, these cookies are not cookies Graham made. Rather, these are cookies that his sweet sister makes a version of and I was determined to create a from-scratch version. These have less oatmeal than the originals, but that means you can sneak them to people that “don’t eat oatmeal cookies.”

Cream together 1/2 cup unsalted butter, 1/2 cup packed brown sugar, and 1/2 cup white sugar. Beat in 2 large eggs and 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla. Stir in 1 cup flour, 1 cup old fashioned oats, 3/4 teaspoon baking soda, 1 teaspoon kosher salt, 1 1/4 cup dried tart cherries, and 1 cup dark chocolate morsels. If you like walnuts or macadamia nuts, throw some in too. If you’re related to Graham, don’t do that, it’s probably not safe.

This will, in fact, look like it’s mostly cherries and chocolate. Do not judge me.

Drop by tablespoons a few inches apart on silicone or parchment lined baking sheet. Bake 14-17 minutes at 350 degrees. Let cool then remove to cooling rack. Smack husband’s hand away when he tries to steal them while piping hot.

 

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Pudding Pie

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A word of caution: this is not a pie that you can throw together at the last minute. This is a pie that needs to be refrigerated for at least 24 hours. Sometimes longer. I recommend making this with the chocolate animal cracker pie crust, but the shortbread crust is a good option, too.

 

Combine 1 1/2 cups sugar, 1/4 cup cornstarch, 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, 3 cups whole milk, and 4 egg yolks in a medium saucepan. Whisk together. Whisk over medium heat until it just barely comes to a boil and starts to get thick. For me this takes about 15 minutes because I don’t want to curdle anything and I keep it over medium-low heat if we’re being honest. First you want it to coat the back of your spoon. This means that when you lift a spoon, you can wipe your finger in the sauce and leave your finger trail. Keep stirring until it’s thick like pudding.

Remove from heat. Add 6.5 ounces (1 bar) bittersweet baking chocolate, chopped roughly, and 1 tablespoon vanilla extract. Add a 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon and a 1/4 teaspoon chili powder if you want it to have a bit more flair. Add 2 tablespoons unsalted butter. Stir until it’s all melted together. Pour into your pie crust. No need to bake it. Pour any excess into a pudding container of your choice.

Let your pie come to room temperature, then move it to your fridge to sit, uncovered, for at least 24 hours. 36 hours seems to be a sweet spot.

 

 

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Animal Cracker Pie Crust

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In a food processor, crush approximately 2 cups of chocolate animal crackers (or other wafer cookie) until it forms fine crumbs. Measure 1 1/2 cups of these crumbs into a mixing bowl. Slowly stream in 6 tablespoons of butter, melted and cooled.

Press into a pie plate and really smash it all together. The more compact you can make it, the easier it is to serve intact later.

Bake at 350 for about 15 minutes.

 

Let cool completely before filling with pie filling of your choice.

 

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Apricot Scones

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Scones are one of those things that feel intimidating and fancy, but really shouldn’t. They come together quite easily and are pretty versatile.

In a large bowl, combine 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour with 1 tablespoon baking powder, 1/4 cup sugar, 1 teaspoon cardamom, 1 teaspoon cinnamon and 1/2 cup cubed cold salted butter. Mix together with your hands until it looks like coarse crumbs. Fold in a heaping 1/2 cup diced dried apricots (I used half regular dried apricots, and half chocolate covered dried apricots we had in the pantry) and 3/4 semi-sweet chocolate chips.

In a separate bowl, whisk together one egg and 2/3 cup heavy whipping cream. Add to dry ingredients, stirring to combine. Knead lightly approximately 30 seconds, until everything comes together. If it feels too wet and you’re having a hard time pulling your hands out cleanly, add a tablespoon of flour at a time until it you can shape the dough without it sticking to you much. It should look a lot like cookie dough.

Pat the dough into a ball and transfer to a parchment or silicone lined baking sheet. Flatten into a 1″ disk. Use a butter knife to carefully cut the disk into eighths. Brush with additional heavy whipping cream, then sprinkle with sugar. Cook about 17 minutes at 425.

If you prefer savory scones, omit the cardamom, cinnamon, vanilla, apricots and chocolate. Instead, half the sugar (use 2 tablespoons instead of 1/4 cup), add 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder, 1/2 teaspoon onion powder, 1 teaspoon salt, 1 cup grated sharp cheddar and 1/4 cup fresh chives.

 

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