Hello, sorry to bother you. My friends birthday is coming up soon and they're a big fan of baked goods and dark chocolate. So I was wondering if you had any good brownie or cookie recipes that include dark chocolate that I may use? Or maybe recipes where the chocolate can be switched for dark chocolate. I hope I'm not bothering you, thanks for your time.
Hey! You’re not bothering me, no one ever bothers me!
So the good news is that any of my chocolate recipes that have any sort of melting chocolate or cocoa powder can be switched out for dark chocolate or dark chocolate cocoa powder at a 1:1 ratio. Meaning just use dark chocolate instead.
My favorite chocolate recipes are these killer brownies and maybe these delicious chocolate cookies that I made 1000 years ago. Though if you’re looking for a little bit of an out-of-the-box recipe, try out my s’mores cupcakes, my husband asks me for these all the time, and if you’re not into marshmallow frosting, buttercream would work out just as well.
Hope this helps! :) Bake away
Woo, let’s talk about my new-house-weird-lighting situation. Here you can see a dimly lit set of packages by two super swell lantern lamps I got in China Town San Fran. I’m working on it.
Anyway, Awake Chocolate. I found these suckers in the candy aisle right next to your standard M&M’s and Hershey’s chocolates, and they stood out right away. Why? Well let’s think about this: super modern design and a giant owl. Next to other industry-saturated candy packages. I think you get it. Also, being October and in the mindset of Halloween, I did get excited about the brown/orange color scheme and the adorable Owl. I hope the Owl’s name is Cocoa and he’s sassy. **UPDATE: Turns out the owl’s name is Nevil ;) Thanks @awakechocolate twitter!**
So these are caffeinated chocolates, and the ratio is half a cup of coffee to one chocolate. That’s serious caffeine. And delicious caffeine. They all come individually wrapped, which I think is smart because a) you can’t overload yourself on them (they recommend 4 max per day) and b) you can throw them in your bag for an extra tasty boost. 5 hour energy or a piece of chocolate? No brainer.
So far I have only tried the milk chocolate, but I bought the caramel because why not (and packaging). I have a tendency to not go overboard on the caffeine on a regular basis (confession: I don’t drink coffee, but I do drink tea and I definitely have a coke zero problem) so in trying one I didn’t notice too much of an energy difference, but I’m sure it’s there and will hit me when I try to go to bed tonight.
My coworkers tell me the agency (being TetherInc) who designed these packages spoke at the HOW design conference this past year, and they have Awake as a case study on their website.
Overall, sweet packaging (hahaha chocolate puns), and as far as packaging goes, it certainly does it’s job and I bought it and they win. Packaging always wins.
Gluten Free Cinnamon Roll Cookies adapted from Gluten Free on a Shoestring
What You’ll Need:
FOR THE COOKIES:
- Wax Paper (to roll out cookie dough)
- 2 cups all-purpose gluten-free flour (mine was from Trader Joe’s)
- 1 teaspoon xanthan gum
- 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 3 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar
- 9 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
- 2 eggs, room temperature
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
FOR THE FILLING
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature (I actually used spreadable butter for this)
- 3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
- 1 1/4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
FOR THE GLAZE
- 3/4 cup confectioners’ sugar
- 1-2 tablespoons milk (I used almond, nice and sweet)
- Preheat oven to 350°F
- Whisk all the dry ingredients together. Add butter, vanilla and egg and mix until fully combined. Your dough should all stick together and resemble sugar cookie dough.
- Take your dough and pop it in the freezer for 5 minutes, so it firms up. Rolling out warm dough is tough - I learned this the hard way.
- Take two sheets of wax paper, put one on the counter and lay your cookie dough on that. Take the other sheet and put it on top. Roll on top of the wax paper so your dough doesn’t stick to the rolling pin (the second sheet isn’t necessary, but makes clean-up easier) Roll dough out to roughly 1/4 inch thick.
- Filling: Spread butter on top of the rolled out dough (coat it so the brown sugar/cinnamon will stick there)
- Mix together the brown sugar/cinnamon and sprinkle evenly on top of the dough.
- Cut strips into your rolled out dough and roll up like cinnamon buns - my dough was really long and I didn’t want my cookies to be enormous so I cut the strips in half. (See last photo!)
- Cut the rolls into smaller rolls (about 1/4-1/2 inch thick cookies), roll in the remaining brown sugar/cinnamon mixture and pop in the oven for 10-12 minutes
- Glaze: Mix the confectioners sugar and milk until it becomes gooey. Start on the low-end of the milk and add gradually. You don’t want this to be too soupy, so less milk is more.
- Using a pastry bag or a spoon, drizzle onto semi-cooled cookies.
- Bring to your favorite fall event in lieu of a breakfast item ;) Also good reheated!
The website I got this from has a more precise way of rolling out the dough/rolling up the cookies so that they’re more even. I personally didn’t care whether I had baby cookies or enormous misshapen cookies - it gives them all more character and they still taste delicious ;)
For gluten free items, I find that if you don’t have to tell anyone they’re gluten free, they’ve passed the test. They taste great and are surprisingly easy to make!
Things I’ve been doing lately:
Making badass macaroni and cheese to put in these cauldron bowls from crate and barrel and eating Lindt chocolate like it’s going out of style.
Comfort foods up the wazoo until I get my life back in order. :)
Also it was my first year anniversary this past weekend! Woohoo! We went apple picking and it was adorable.
I’m still settling into my house and work is nutzo because I’m a designer for a living and that’s just my life. I’m gonna go do some yoga!