Pumpkin Gingerbread with Orange Glaze

Cake

  • 3/4 cup (12 tablespoons) butter or vegetable shortening
  • 1 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 3/4 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/3 cup mini diced ginger
  • 1/2 cup diced pecans or 1/2 cup chocolate chips, optional
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 tablespoons molasses
  • 2 cups (or one 15-ounce can) pumpkin purée

Glaze

  • 1 1/4 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon orange oil OR 1 tablespoon orange zest (grated orange rind)
  • 2 tablespoons water or milk

Directions

  1. Preheat your oven to 350°F. Grease two 8 1/2″ x 4 1/2″ loaf pans for loaves; if you’re making muffins, grease 24 muffin cups, or line them with muffin papers.
  2. In a large bowl mix together the butter (or shortening) and brown sugar until well blended.
  3. Add the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, spices, ginger, and nuts or chips, if you’re using them. Mix well — the batter will look crumbly.
  4. Add the eggs one at a time, scraping the bottom and sides of the bowl after each addition.
  5. Stir in the molasses and pumpkin, combining well.
  6. Scoop the batter into the greased loaf pans or the muffin cups, filling the cups about 2/3 full.
  7. Bake the muffins for 18 to 20 minutes, or until they’re lightly browned on the edges and the middle springs back when touched. Bake the loaves for 50 to 55 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean.
  8. Remove the bread from the oven and let it cool for 15 minutes before taking it out of the pan(s). Let it cool a bit, then glaze if desired.
  9. To make the glaze: Whisk together all the ingredients, adding extra liquid until the glaze is smooth and the consistency of molasses.
  10. For a shiny finish, brush the glaze over the bread or muffins while they’re still warm; for a thick white finish, cool the bread completely before glazing.
  11. Store well wrapped on the counter for 3 to 4 days; or freeze for up to 3 months.
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Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars

Adapted from King Arthur Flour

  • 2/3 cup (10 2/3 tablespoons) unsalted butter
  • 2 cups + 2 tablespoons firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 3/4 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour or King Arthur White Whole Wheat Flour
  • 3 cups chocolate chips; or a combination of different flavored chips, or chips and nuts

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a 9″ x 13″ pan.
  2. Melt the butter, and stir in the brown sugar. Add the salt, vanilla, and flavor, stirring until well combined.
  3. Allow the mixture to cool slightly (if it’s very hot to the touch), then add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Scrape the sides and bottom of the mixing bowl midway through this process.
  4. Add the baking powder, espresso powder, and flour, stirring to combine.
  5. Stir in the chips or other additions of your choice.
  6. Scoop the batter into the prepared pan, spreading it to the edges with a wet spatula (or your wet fingers). Smooth the top as best you can.
  7. Bake the bars for 30 to 32 minutes, until they’ve risen, and their top is shiny and golden. Bake for the shorter amount of time in a darker pan; the longer time in a light/shiny pan. A cake tester inserted into the center won’t come out clean; in fact, the center of the very middle of the pan may look quite molten when you dig into it. But so long as no wet batter is showing farther out towards the edges, the bars are done. As they cool, the center will solidify.
  8. Remove the bars from the oven, and use a heatproof spatula to press down the risen edges; this will make bars with flat, rather than humped tops. Let the bars cool completely before cutting; overnight is best. Once bars are cool, wrap airtight. Store wrapped bars at room temperature for a couple of days.

Lemon-Glazed Pound Cake

Adapted from King Arthur Flour

Cake

Glaze

Directions

  1. To make the cake: Preheat your oven to 350°F. Grease two 8 1/2″ x 4 1/2″ loaf pans or one tube or bundt-style pan.
  2. In a medium-sized mixing bowl, beat together the butter and cream cheese until soft and fluffy. Add the salt, sugar, flour, and baking powder, and beat for 5 minutes; the batter will be stiff.
  3. Add the vanilla and lemon oil, and 1 egg. Beat well. Continue to add the eggs, one at a time, beating well and scraping the sides and bottom of the bowl after each addition. When done, the batter will be very fluffy. Spoon the batter into the prepared pan(s).
  4. Bake the cake for 55 to 60 minutes (for the tube or bundt-style pans) or 35 to 40 minutes (for the two loaf pans), or until a cake tester or toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
  5. To make the glaze: Just before the cake is done, combine the lemon juice and sugar and heat over low heat (or in the microwave) until the sugar is dissolved; don’t let the mixture boil.
  6. Remove the cake from the oven; allow it to cool for 10 minutes in the pan. Turn it out onto a rack or serving platter.
  7. Poke the top of the cake all over with a cake tester or toothpick, and gradually drizzle the glaze over it, pausing occasionally to let 

Chocolate and Coconut Milk Pots de Crème

Chocolate and Coconut Milk Pots de Crème

Adapted from The Bojon Gourmet

Makes 6 small yet rich servings (about 4 ounces each)

For the pots de crèmes:
1 can full-fat coconut milk (1 3/4 cups)
1 tbsp vanilla bean paste
3 ounces (85 grams) bittersweet chocolate finely chopped
1 tablespoon cocoa
1 large egg
2 large egg yolks
1/4 cup (1.25 ounces / 35 grams) sugar
1 tablespoon dark rum

For serving:
3/4 cup (175 mL) heavy whipping cream
1 tablespoon coconut sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
splash dark rum, to taste
flaky salt, such as Maldon

Make the Pots de Crème:
Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 300ºF . Place six four-ounce ramekins in a baking dish with 2-inch high sides.

In a medium saucepan, gently warm the coconut milk with the vanilla bean paste until the coconut milk is steamy-hot, swirling occasionally. Cover and let steep 10 minutes. Whisk in the salt, chocolate, and cocoa powder until completely smooth.

Whisk together the egg, egg yolks, and coconut sugar in a medium bowl. Slowly whisk the warm chocolate mixture into the egg mixture until smooth, then whisk in the rum.

Carefully divide the mixture evenly among the ramekins in their baking pan. Pour enough hot water to come halfway up the sides of the jars. Transfer the pan to the oven.

Bake the custards until they are mostly set and wiggle like Jell-o when you give the pan a gentle shake, 30-45 minutes. Let the custards cool slightly, remove from the pan, and let cool to room temperature. Chill the custards until set, about 3 hours (or cover and chill for up to 3 days).

Make the whipped cream:
Whip the cream with the coconut sugar, vanilla extract, and rum until it holds soft peaks. Serve the pots de crème dolloped with the whipped cream and topped with a few cacao nibs and flakes of salt.

 

Chocolate Coconut Pound Cake | Desserts

We topped this with fresh strawberry ice cream and it was delicious!

Chocolate Coconut Pound Cake
Adapated from Bon Appetite

Ingredients

  • 1½ cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¾ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ cup virgin coconut oil, room temperature
  • 1½ cups plus 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ⅔ cup buttermilk
  • ¼ cup unsweetened coconut flakes
Directions
Preheat oven to 325°. Butter a loaf pan; line with parchment paper, leaving a overhang on the sides to help with removing the cake. Stir together flour, cocoa powder, salt, and baking powder in a medium bowl; set aside.
Using a stand mixer on medium-high speed, beat oil, ¼ cup butter, and 1½ cups sugar until pale and fluffy, 5–7 minutes. Add eggs one at a time, beating to blend between additions; beat until mixture is light and doubled, 5–8 minutes. Stir in vanilla.
Reduce mixer speed to low and add dry ingredients in 3 additions, alternating with buttermilk in 2 additions, beginning and ending with dry ingredients (do not overmix; it will cause cake split). Scrape batter into buttered pan. Sprinkle with coconut and remaining 1 Tbsp. sugar.
Bake cake, covering lightly with foil if coconut browns too much before cake is done (it should be very dark and toasted), until a tester inserted into the center comes out clean, 70–80 minutes. Transfer pan to a wire rack; let cake cool in pan 20 minutes before turning out.

Chocolate Hazelnut Mousse Cake

Moist Chocolate Cake
Adapted from King Arthur Flour
  • 2 cups King Arthur Unbleached Cake Flour Blend
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, very soft
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup brewed, cooled coffee, or water
  • 4 large eggs
Directions
Sift  flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cocoa, and sugar into a medium bowl.
Add the butter to the bowl of a stand mixer and and mix at low speed for 1 minute. With the mixer running, add the oil.
Combine the vanilla with the milk and coffee or water.  Beginning and ending with the dry ingredients, alternately add flour mixture and milk mixture. Mix at low speed until combined, stop and scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl, then mix for 30 seconds.
Add the eggs one at a time, beating well at medium-high speed between additions. The batter will be thin.
Pour the batter into two 9″ greased round pans. Bake in a preheated 350°F oven for 28 to 30 minutes. The cake is done when a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove from the oven and cool on a rack before frosting.
Chocolate Hazelnut Cream Cheese Mousse
Adapted from Cookies and Cups
  • 8 oz whipping cream
  • 8 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 3/4 cup chocolate hazelnut spread
  • 2 cups powdered sugar, sifted
  • 1 tsp vanilla
Directions
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk, whisk the cream on high speed until peaks form, about 2 minutes.  Refrigerate until ready to use.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle, beat the cream cheese and hazelnut spread until smooth. With mixer on low, slowly add powdered sugar and vanilla, beat until smooth.
Fold in whipped cream.

Sour Cream Old Fashioned Doughnuts

When we visited Seattle a few years ago, one of the top places on my must see what Top Pot Doughnuts.  The first bite of their delicious cakey treats brought us back three times that trip.  

Sour Cream Old Fashioned Doughnuts
Adapted from Top Pot Hand Forged Doughnuts 
Ingredients
  • 2¼ cups cake flour
  • 1½ teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ¾ teaspoons ground nutmeg
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons shortening
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • ⅔ cups sour cream
  • coconut oil for frying
Directions
  1. Sift flour, baking powder, salt and nutmeg together in a medium bowl, and set aside.
  2. In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix the sugar and shortening for 1 minute on low speed. Add the egg yolks, then mix for 1 more minute on medium speed, scraping the sides of the bowl with a spatula, until the mixture is light colored and thick.
  3. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients in three separate additions, alternating with sour cream, mixing until just combined on low speed and scraping the sides of the bowl each time. The dough will be sticky, like biscuit dough.
  4. Transfer the dough to a clean bowl and refrigerate, covered with plastic wrap, for at least 45 minutes.
  5. Using a candy thermometer to measure the temperature, heat oil (at least 2 in deep) in a high-sided frying pan to 325°F. Roll out the chilled dough on a generously floured surface to ½ in thick, flouring the top of the dough and the rolling pin as necessary to prevent sticking. Cut into as many doughnuts and holes as possible, dipping the cutter into flour before each cut. Fold and gently reroll the dough to make extra holes (working with floured hands makes the dough less sticky), and cut again.
  6. Shake any excess flour off the doughnuts before carefully adding them to the hot oil a few at a time, taking care not to crowd them. Once the doughnuts float, fry for about 15 seconds, then gently flip them. Fry for about 60 seconds, until golden brown and cracked, then flip and fry the first side again for 60 seconds, until golden brown. Transfer to a rack set over paper towels.
  7. Dip doughnuts in coating of choice.