chocolatey almond goodness

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When it comes to family gatherings I'm the dessert girl, so this Easter I made some simple brownies to satisfy my family's sweet tooth cravings. As I was hurriedly making them on Sunday morning I realized I was out of vanilla extract (great!). As I muttered to myself the Hubs suggested trying almond extract as a replacement (good idea!). Turns out it was a great idea. I switched out the walnuts for almonds and I think this is my new favourite twist on my go-to brownie recipe from The Clueless Baker: Baking from Scratch - Easy as Pie"" by Evelyn Raab. Here it is if you want to try:

You'll need:

  • 4 squares unsweetened chocolate (Baker's chocolates)
  • 3/4 cup butter
  • 1.5 cups granulated sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla (I substituted 1 tsp almond extract)
  • 3/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup walnuts (I substituted almond slivers)

Then you:

  1. Preheat oven to 350F
  2. Melt together chocolate and butter over medium heat in a large pot, remove from heat and let cool slightly
  3. With an electric mixer on low speed beat in the sugar, then eggs and vanilla (or almond extract)
  4. Stir in the flour, then add the chocolate chips and walnuts (or almonds)
  5. Pour batter into a greased baking pan and bake for 35-40 minutes (don't overbake, they're supposed to be a bit fudgy)

Yummy chocolate!

April 26, 2011 by Alanna Banks

pumpkin chocolate chip squares

My contribution to our Thanksgiving feast is dessert and rather than making the same old pumpkin pie I decided to switch things up and make pumpkin chocolate chip squares (yum!). Those that love the spicy goodness of pumpkin pie will be satisfied and all the chocolate lovers will get their fix (aren't I thoughtful?).

If you're scrambling to make a yummy dessert for your Thankgiving dinner try out this recipe from The Stop's Good Food For All: Seasonal Recipes from a Community Garden (love this cookbook!)

Here's what you need:

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp each nutmeg, ground cloves and ground ginger
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1 cup butter softened
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 cup canned pumpkin puree (or fresh if you're up for it)
  • 1 pkg (340g) semi sweet chocolate chips

Here's what you do:

  1. Preheat oven to 350F and grease a 9x13'' baking pan.
  2. Whisk together all of the dry ingredients except for the sugar and chocolate chips.
  3. Cream butter and sugar with an electric mixer until smooth, beat in egg and vanilla until combined, then add pumpkin puree.
  4. Drop mixing speed to low, add in dry ingredients until just combined, then fold in chocolate chips.
  5. Spread batter in baking pan and bake for 40 minutes.
  6. Cool and cut into squares.

Yum! Happy baking!

October 10, 2010 by Alanna Banks