S’mores Crunch Cookies

S’mores Crunch Cookies

These cookies are one of those baking miracles that occasionally happen. Let’s say you suddenly remember you want to make cookies for your husband’s co-workers one evening after work, but didn’t prepare at all and don’t really have an idea in mind. So, you comb through your Evernote “Cookies” notebook, looking for something you can make with what you have in the house.

You stumble upon Toffee Crunch Cookies from Shugary Sweets, a recipe you saved years ago and completely forgot about. The ingredient list looks a little intense and random, but behold! the pantry contains everything you need. Plus, your husband loves toffee. The cookies come together quickly, only dirtying one bowl, which your dishes-hating self loves.

So, you make the cookies as he attends some weird coaches’ training and are shocked to discover, upon removing the cookies from the oven, that they taste NOTHING like toffee. But they are delicious! A renaming is in order as you nom your delicious cookie, crunchy with rice crisps, hearty with oats, and chockful of little baby marshmallows and chocolate chips.

Well.. duh! They must be s’more crunch cookies! All of the delicious flavors of the fireside treat, plus the crunch and heartiness you remember from the elementary school’s cowboy cookies, and a side of wonderful, ooey, gooey baked goodness.

Take them to your husband’s co-workers. They will love you, they will be impressed. Take them to your co-workers. They will love them, they will demand the recipe 🙂

S’mores Crunch Cookies
(makes approximately 28 medium cookies, or two cookie sheets worth)

  • 1 stick butter, softened
  • ½ cup shortening (or another stick of butter)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup dark brown sugar
  • 2 whole eggs
  • 1 Tablespoon almond extract
  • 2 cups flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 cups quick oats
  • 1 cup Rice Krispies
  • 1-¼ cup milk chocolate chips
  • 1 cup mini marshmallows
  • I think that pecans or walnuts would be delish as a mix-in too. Customize the shiz out of them!

 

  1. Preheat oven to 350° F.
  2. Line 2 cookie sheets with a silpat or parchement paper.
  3. In your mixer bowl, beat butter, shortetning, sugar, and brown sugar together on medium until light and fluffy.
  4. While the beater runs on low, add eggs one at a time, then add almond extract.
  5. Add flour, baking soda and baking powder to mixer bowl, then beat on medium until well-combined.
  6. Remove bowl from mixer, and fold oats, Rice Krispies, chocolate chips and marshmallows with a spatula until everything is well distributed.
  7. Roll batter into 1-2 Tablespoon balls, and place on cookie sheets, 1-2” apart.
  8. Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until centers are set.
  9. Cool on the cookie sheets for 5-10 minutes, then enjoy!
  10. Store in an air-tight container for up to 5 days.

Based on a recipe from Shugary Sweets

 

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Lovely and Liquor-ish: Bourbon Bacon Chocolate Chip Cookies

Lovely and Liquor-ish: Bourbon Bacon Chocolate Chip Cookies

Friends! We’re back in the world of recipes, and I’m bringing you a boozy doozy 🙂

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Bill’s dungeon-master-ing a group of fellow teachers on an adventure once a week, so I’m having college D&D flashbacks. Since the fellas can’t meet at our apartment (they’re allergic to the Finnmonster), I’m trying to be a good DM’s-wife/hostess by sending some snacks along with my boy to their meetings.

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This week, I was stocked up on cooked turkey bacon from a recent household addition (did you know it’s so much better for you than normal bacon? and still tasty?), and had been in a bourbon mood, because that’s the sort of girl I am. Bourbon, bacon and chocolate go together that peanut butter and jelly, so my obvious choice was to make some delicious ‘adult’ cookies for my full-grown nerds to enjoy 😉

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This is based on my very favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe, with just a hint of bourbon-y goodness and some salty bacon to take it to the next level 🙂

Bourbon Bacon Chocolate Chip Cookies

  • 1¾ cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ cup butter, softened
  • ¼ cup packed light brown sugar
  • ¼ cup packed dark brown sugar
  • ⅓ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • 2 Tablespoons bourbon (or more, to taste)
  • ½ cup mini chocolate chips
  • 4 slices of crispy, cooked bacon (or turkey bacon), diced
  1. Preheat the oven to 350◦ F.
  2. Cream the butter and sugars together until creamy and smooth. Add in the egg, extracts, and bourbon.
  3. In medium bowl, whisk the flour, salt, and baking soda together. Slowly mix the flour into the butter mixture, until combined.
  4. Turn the mixer to low and slowly add in chocolate chips and diced bacon
  5. Roll dough into Tablespoon-sized balls. Place on baking sheet and slightly flatten with the palm of your hand.
  6. Bake for 12 minutes or until cookies are golden brown and set. Remove from the oven and let cool on baking sheet for two minutes.

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Summery Sweets: Peach-Blackberry Shortbread Bars

Summery Sweets: Peach-Blackberry Shortbread Bars

I don’t know if y’all know this, but I grew up in the woods. And when I say the woods, I mean no-fire-department, just-got-9-1-1-service-a-few-years-ago, walk-around-barefoot, fish-in-the-lake-across-the-road woods.

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My parents’ house is at least 30 minutes from almost anything, surrounded by Piney Woods and some less-than-savory characters. For some city folks, being that removed from civilization may sound like torture, but for me it meant that I grew up relying on my books and imagination for entertainment rather than, you know, other people or activities.

Blackberry-Peach Shortbread Bars from Mancktastic! at mancktastic.wordpress.com

My brother and I would walk across our little tar road to the “lake” (really just kind of a big pond) to fish for three-eyed little guppy-fish, search for turtle shells and birds nests in the thicket across from the house or pick dewberries (wild blackberries) from the huge bush that grew around a big oak tree down at the turnaround. It was easy to imagine that I was Laura Ingalls from the Big Woods or scrounging for survival like in Hatchet. When we came home with our bounty of berries, smeared with juice and scratched up from brambles, we’d enjoy them like cereal – in a big bowl of cold milk with a little bit of sugar sprinkled on top. Daddy would tell us stories about doing the same thing when he was a little boy, a county over, and how sick he’d get when he ate more berries than he brought home to Grammy and his siblings.

Blackberry-Peach Shortbread Bars from Mancktastic! at mancktastic.wordpress.com

Now, whenever I enjoy a dessert studded through with glistening blackberries, I drift back to those happy summer days of my childhood. Maybe we only berry-picked a few times, but the taste of those fresh little jewels imprinted that memory deep in my mind. I got to reminisce this weekend when I made Blackberry-Peach Shortbread Bars for our weekly Sunday meal with our neighbor, Keri. It was very homey, enjoying my grownup life while thinking about memories of my childhood.

Blackberry-Peach Shortbread Bars from Mancktastic! at mancktastic.wordpress.com

These are deliciously dense bars, lightly spiced with cinnamon and nutmeg and a little extra sweetness from the brown sugar. I used both almond and vanilla extracts to get an extra bake-y flavor that melted into the natural syrupy texture of the baked peach and blackberries. They’re just sweet enough to satiate your sweet tooth without overwhelming your palette, while remaining fresh from the fruit and filling because of the shortbread base. These bars are delicious fresh out of the oven or chilled in the fridge for an extra dense texture. For an extra special treat, enjoy them topped with vanilla ice cream for a cobbler-esque dessert.

Blackberry-Peach Shortbread Bars from Mancktastic! at mancktastic.wordpress.com

Peach-Blackberry Shortbread Bars

  • 1½ cup flour
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons brown sugar
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ⅛ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ⅛ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup cold butter (1 stick), cut into small pieces
  • 1 large egg
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 peach, pitted and thinly sliced
  • 1 cup frozen or fresh blackberries
  1. Preheat oven to 375° F. Spray an 8″x8″ pan with non-stick baking spray and set aside.
  2. Mix together flour, sugars, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt in a medium bowl.
  3. Add butter pieces to flour mixture and use your hands or a pastry cutter to crumble together until the dough forms small pieces. Stir egg and extracts into the dough until well-combined.
  4. Press ¾ of the dough into your pan, setting the rest of the dough aside. Add peach slices and blackberries to the pan, then top with the remaining dough.
  5. Bake for 25-30 minutes, over until top is golden brown. Allow to cool completely before cutting into bars. Store leftovers in refrigerator.

Based on a recipe from Everybody Likes Sandwiches

Blackberry-Peach Shortbread Bars from Mancktastic! at mancktastic.wordpress.com

Deeply Dark Delights: Chocolate-Espresso Sandwich Cookies

Deeply Dark Delights: Chocolate-Espresso Sandwich Cookies

Yesterday, I said that cinnamon-sugar was one of Bill & I’s love languages. Today, I’m here to share one of Bill’s love languages, in cookie form: Espresso and Chocolate! From mochas to chocolate-covered espresso beans, the man has a chocolate-coated caffeine addiction to be sure. He came by it honestly, though, since his parents have the same love, too.

Chocolate-Espresso Cookies from Mancktastic!

Since we were driving up to Albany, I decided to bring up some baked goods for my wonderful in-laws in the same vein as the love/addiction they share with their son: Chocolate-Espresso Sandwich Cookies! These fluffy dark chocolate cookies with espresso suggestions are wonderful on their own, but they really crank it up to 11 when sandwiched together with a chocolate whipped ganache.

Chocolate-Espresso Cookies from Mancktastic!

The whole effect is that of a grown up whoopie pie or simplified macaron that is a snap to whip up at home! By using both butter and shortening with exclusively brown sugar, you get a silky smooth, extravagant flavor from the get go that is deepened and enhanced with extra-dark cocoa powder and the special oomph of espresso powder that somehow makes chocolate taste even more chocolatey. Since the cookies are studded throughout with semi-sweet chocolate, you get 3 different levels of chocolate with each and every bite. The cookies are outstanding, but man I could just eat this whipped ganache up with a spoon (and I may have whilst assembling these dark delights)! It manages to be light and deep at the same time with a cool, rich taste that will leave you licking your fingers!

Chocolate-Espresso Cookies from Mancktastic!

Chocolate-Espresso Sandwich Cookies

  • ½ cup butter, softened
  • ½ cup butter flavored shortening
  • 1½ cups brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cups flour
  • ½ cup extra-dark cocoa powder
  • ½ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1½ teaspoons espresso powder
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chunks
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  1. Beat butter, shortening, and brown sugar for 2-3 minutes in the mixer. Add vanilla, salt, and eggs and beat for an additional minute. Add flour, cocoa, chocolate chips, baking powder, and espresso powder, then beat until well-combined
  2. Place dough in refrigerator for 1 hour while you prepare the filling.
  3. Heat heavy cream in a small saucepan over medium until little bubbles form. Whisk in chocolate chips until completely incorporated, then remove filling from heat and place in refrigerator for 1 hour.
  4. After dough has rested in the fridge for 1 hour, preheat oven to 375◦ F. Form dough into 1 Tablespoon balls and place on a baking sheet.
  5. Bake for 9-11 minutes, then allow them to cool slightly on baking sheet, then cool completely on wire rack.
  6. When cookies are cooled, beat the filling with a wire whisk attachment with your mixer until fluffy. Scoop into a ziptop bag, snip off the corner.
  7. Form sandwiches by piping filling onto one cookie, topping it with another cookie, and pressing lightly to adhere the cookies together.

Based on a recipe from Shugary Sweets

Chocolate-Espresso Cookies from Mancktastic!

Pretty as a Peach Cobbler!

Pretty as a Peach Cobbler!

This started out as a cobbler for my wonderful parents as thanks for letting us borrow their big ol’ truck to drive up to Albany… but then I forgot it in Houston when we went to get the truck. Dang! It turned out to be a blessing in disguise, though, since Mom’s more of a pie-crusty-cobbler person and this is in the biscuit-crust camp. Luckily, the girls at work like biscuit-crust cobblers, so they got to enjoy this cobbler as I left them for the great North 🙂

Peach Cobbler from Mancktastic!

As I said last week, it’s definitely peach season in Texas right now, so of course it has to be cobbler season as well! This recipe highlights the natural sweetness of the peaches with honey, cinnamon and cornstarch for a nicely spiced, syrupy filling with a light, almost shortbread-like crust that also incorporates cinnamon for extra yumminess!

Peach Cobbler from Mancktastic!

This is a great recipe to make ahead for a picnic (it is Fourth of July tomorrow!) and enjoy with family, friends and vanilla ice cream. The tasty crust soaks up both the melty ice cream and the sweetly syrupy peaches. You can even follow my lead and bake it in a disposable pan so you don’t have to worry about clean-up or leaving a pan behind!

Peach Cobbler from Mancktastic!

Pretty as a Peach Cobbler

  • 3 pounds peaches, sliced
  • ¼ cup honey
  • 3 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt
  • 1½ cups flour
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • 9 Tablespoons cold butter, cut into small chunks
  • ⅓ cup boiling water
  1. Preheat oven to 350◦ F. Butter and flour a 8×8 baking dish.
  2. Toss peaches, honey, cornstarch, cinnamon, and salt together until well-combined. Pour the filling into the prepared dish.
  3. Stir together the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon in mixer bowl. Add butter pieces and mix on medium until it forms coarse crumbs. Add the boiling water and mix until it forms a dough.
  4. Top filling with small hunks of dough. Bake for 40 minutes or until golden brown and delicious.

based on a recipe from Buns In My Oven

prettyasapeachcobbler

Cinnamon Surprise: Snickerdoodle Dough Truffles

Cinnamon Surprise: Snickerdoodle Dough Truffles

As you know by now, Snickerdoodles are a favorite here at the ManckWhite kitchen; cinnamon and sugar are one of our love languages : ) As delicious as the baked goods are, sometimes in the heat of summer I just want a big ol’ hunk of dough rather than messing with the oven, you know? Mom always told me not to eat raw cookie dough unless I wanted salmonella, so I was going sadly cookie-dough-less… until now!

Snickerdoodle Dough Truffles from Mancktastic!

Snickerdoodle Dough Truffles take all of the wonderful sweet and spiced flavors of snickerdoodles and makes them into cool little bite-sized treats. By replacing eggs with cream cheese, we remove any danger and add decadent creaminess in its place. Then we coat the whole shebang in cinnamon-y white chocolate to cap off a perfect sweet bite.

Snickerdoodle Dough Truffles from Mancktastic!

Honest to goodness, I had to hide these from my husband so they’d make it up to Albany for his parents. They’re the perfect size and taste for a hard-to-resist indulgence.

For a special 4th of July twist, add red and blue sprinkles to their tops as the white chocolate sets and call them flavor fireworks!

Snickerdoodle Dough Truffles from Mancktastic!

Snickerdoodle Dough Truffles

  • 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • ½ cup unsalted butter, softened
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ¼ cup light brown sugar
  • 1¼ cup all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1¼ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 2 cups white chocolate chips
  • ½ cup shortening
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  1. Beat cream cheese and butter with sugars in mixer for 2-3 minutes, or until creamy. Add flour, vanilla, salt, cinnamon and cream of tartar, then beat until smooth.
  2. Form dough into 1 Tablespoon-sized balls and place on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet or flexible cutting board. Place in freezer and freeze for at least 2 hours, or up to overnight.
  3. Combine white chocolate chips and shortening in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave for 1 minute. Stir together until all chocolate is melted and smooth. Dunk dough balls into chocolate one by one, tap off excess chocolate, then place back on to original sheet.
  4. Top coated truffles with cinnamon and allow to set, about 15 minutes. Store truffles in refrigerator for one week, or freezer for one month.

based on recipe from Shugary Sweets

Snickerdoodle Dough Truffles from Mancktastic!

 

The Sweet Basic: Mini Chocolate Chip Cookies

The Sweet Basic: Mini Chocolate Chip Cookies

Apparently I’m on of a bit of a cookie run here on Mancktastic! Today, I’m pleased to bring you my very favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe. These little buggers are soft, sweet, and tasty, which makes them a great base for customization or a staple to enjoy.

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I whipped up this batch in their most basic format as a last-day-of-Latin treat for Bill’s seniors. In the past, I’ve turned these into almond joy delights, confetti cookies and even triple chocolate cookies, but who doesn’t love a warm, tasty, plain ‘ol chocolate chip cookie?

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These come together in about 20 minutes total, which makes them a great school night treat. Simply cream together butter and sugar, add eggs and vanilla, then beat in flour, salt and baking soda to create the buttery, soft basic dough. Mix in itsy bitsy chocolate chips studded throughout the cookies, roll them into Tablespoon-sized balls, and pop ’em into the oven to bake.

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Since they’re smaller than your average cookie, they bake up quickly which means they can be in your belly extra-quick! I love the little hint of almond extract in these cookies; it really sets them apart from your average bear with a delicious, sweet flavor.

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Mini Chocolate Chip Cookies

  • 1¾ cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ cup butter, softened
  • ½ cup packed brown sugar
  • ⅓ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • ½ cup mini chocolate chips
  • ½ cup chocolate chip
  1. Preheat the oven to 350◦ F.
  2. Cream the butter and sugars together until creamy and smooth. Add in the egg and vanilla extract.
  3. In medium bowl, whisk the flour, salt, and baking soda together. Slowly mix the flour into the butter mixture, until combined.
  4. Turn the mixer to low and slowly add in both sizes of the chocolate chips.
  5. Roll dough into Tablespoon-sized balls. Place on baking sheet and slightly flatten with the palm of your hand.
  6. Bake for 12 minutes or until cookies are golden brown and set. Remove from the oven and let cool on baking sheet for two minutes.

Based on a recipe from Two Peas and Their Pod

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PS The lovely husband got me a new camera! I’m still tweaking the manual settings and my Photoshop workflow, but hopefully you can tell a positive difference in the photography. I think they’re at least better than my iPhone, yeah? 🙂