Recently in Recipes, Chocolate Category

Peanut Butter Fingers


So anyway, as I wrote Sunday, Chinese cuisine isn’t as big on sweets and desserts as American and European cuisines are, but as I wrote yesterday, peanuts and peanut butter have been integrated into the cuisine, and are elements of American food you can easily find in Taiwan. Which is why one of the main things my first companion liked to make was this very easy bar cookie recipe called Peanut Butter Fingers. I must have been introduced to this recipe my first week in Taiwan.... and I must have made it dozen of times in the 70 or so weeks I was there. It’s not just that missionaries like it: most Chinese people who ate them thought they were pretty decent too.

A week or so ago, I was invited to a pot luck picnic, and I signed up to bring a dessert. I was going to make these no-bake cookies because they’re SO EASY, but then I remembered that one of my good friends pukes violently if he consumes tree nuts, and I find something distressing about serving food to people that makes them vomit. I thought about making these chocolate chocolate chip cookies, because they’re SO YUMMY, but they take a lot of time, and I didn’t have it.

And then I noticed this recipe for Peanut Butter Fingers, which I hadn’t made in ages. Luckily I had a jar of peanut butter--it’s not necessarily something I keep on hand--and it was that tenth time when peanut butter just sounded good to me, so I made them. And given that the pan was almost empty by the end of the picnic, I think they were a success.

So here, finally, is the recipe for Peanut Butter Fingers.

No-Bake Choco-Nut Cookies


It's been a very long time since I've posted a recipe, so here's one I make fairly often. It's incredibly easy--so easy, in fact, that it was one of the very first things I learned to make on my own, back around age 8 or so. Most cookie lovers have some sort of no-bake recipe but this one is extra yummy.

3 cups rolled oats
5 tbs cocoa
1/2 cup each chopped pecans, coconut and mini chocolate chips
2 cups sugar
1/2 cup milk
6 tbs butter

Combine oats, cocoa, nuts, coconut and chocolate chips in bowl. Heat milk, sugar and butter in small saucepan over low heat just until it boils, stirring constantly to avoid burning. Pour over oat mixture; stir well. Drop by spoonfuls onto waxed paper. Let cool at least ten minutes. Makes about three dozen medium-sized cookies.

When I was little I liked to wait until the cookies got a bit stale, then dissolve them in a glass of milk, which resulted in chocolate milk with a nice sludge of oats and pecans and such at the bottom of the glass. Now I just cut the recipe in half and make about 18 cookies, which lasts me about three days. They're really good for breakfast.

Breakfast of Chocolate Lovers

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One reason I like posting my favorite recipes is that that way, I can access them away from home. For instance, if I'm traveling over the holidays and I feel like making some of my favorite chocolate treats, it won't matter whether or not I've brought the recipe with me if it's available on my blog.

I absolutely love this cake. The baking powder in the batter means that the batter rises while the boiling water and extra sugar and cocoa sink down through the batter and make a lovely fudge sauce. It's gooey and decadent and easy, and it reheats well--just put a portion in the microwave for 99 seconds or so, then top with sweetened yogurt, and you have a delicious and filling (if not particularly nutritious) breakfast.

Bowie Would Eat These Cookies

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Wayne (aka Saviour Onassis) recently lost a lot of weight on what he calls the "WWBE?" diet, or "What Would Bowie Eat?" To truly understand the rationale of the lifestyle, you need to watch Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars, the movie featuring the last performance of Bowie's "leper messiah" before he retired the persona in 1973. The guy is SKINNY, and it's difficult to imagine him eating much of anything. (Saviour Onassis was kind enough to lay out the philosophy of this lifestyle on the blog we write together, Genius to Spare.)

But I bet Bowie would eat these cookies. I've been told by many, many people--Sweet Baby Jesus, among them--that these are the best cookies in the world. And as someone with a highly developed and discriminating set of dessert-loving taste buds, I can pretty much determine for myself that these cookies ROCK.

Double Chocolate Chip Cookies

½ cup butter
1 cup brown sugar
1 egg
½ tsp. vanilla
½ cup sour cream
3 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips, divided in half
1 & 3/4 cups flour
½ tsp each salt, baking powder, baking soda
½ cup coarsely chopped walnuts or pecans, if desired

Melt 1 & ½ cups chocolate chips either in double boiler or in microwave by heating on high for one minute at a time, stirring after each minute of heat until thoroughly melted. (Should take two minutes.) In separate pan or bowl, melt butter. Stir melted butter and brown sugar together thoroughly. Add egg, vanilla and sour cream. Stir in melted chocolate. Add dry ingredients. Batter will be very runny; chill at least one hour. Roll into balls, then roll balls in granulated sugar for a nice finish on the cookies. Bake on greased cookies sheets at 350 for 9-12 minutes depending on how soft or crisp you like your cookies. Cool on pan for at least five minutes before transferring to wire racks for final cooling--cookies are extremely soft when they first come out of the oven. If desired substitute white chocolate chips for some of the chocolate chips added at end. I like to use 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips, 1/2 chunk chocolate chips, and 1/2 cup white chocolate chips. 3-4 dozen cookies.

Easy Chocolate Cream Pie

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Today I went to an English department picnic and I brought along my friend Hugo, who is visiting for the weekend. My contribution to the day's festivities was a chocolate cream pie, which Hugo really liked--he said it was "orgasmic"--and I promised him the recipe. Then I thought I might as well make the recipe available to anyone who wants it, so here it is:


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