Tag Archives: freezer

The Browniest Cookies

Versão em português

Biscoitos Brownie

Have you ever read a recipe, thought it would be easy to make, knew it would be tasty, pinned it, aaaaand…… never remembered to do it? Always, right? 😀 To continue the Chocolate Tertulias, I decided to finally make these cookies, which are basically little round brownies!

These are not only delicious, they’re also very easy to make: you don’t need to soften the butter and you only use one pot! I didn’t have unsweetened chocolate, so I used a70% cocoa one. It was very tasty, but next time I’ll use one with 80% cocoa, or stronger. Even if you don’t like bitter chocolate, I don’t think this recipe would work with milk chocolate – it’d be way too sweet!

You’ll need:

115 g (½ cup) unsalted butter
115 g unsweetened chocolate, chopped
190 g (1 cup, packed) dark or light brown sugar
25 g (2 Tbsp) granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp fine sea or table salt
45 g (½ cup) unsweetened cocoa powder
130 g (1 cup) all-purpose flour
115 g (2/3 cup) chocolate chips or chocolate, chopped into chunks

Biscoitos Brownie

In a pot that fits all ingredients, melt the butter and the chocolate. You can use a water bath, or do what I did and melt everything over the lowest heat on the smallest burner of the stove, stirring constantly and being careful not to let the chocolate burn.

With a silicone spatula, mix the two kinds of sugar into the melted chocolate. Add the eggs, one by one. Mix in the vanilla, salt, and baking soda. Sift the cocoa powder over the batter − yes, I do mean sift it! 😀 − and mix. Sift the flour over the batter and mix just until you don’t see any white specs. Now all you have to do is add the chocolate chips!

Cover the pot with plastic wrap and let it cool in the fridge for about half an hour. Use a cookie scoop or make small balls (mine were about 1 Tbsp of dough), place them on a lined baking sheet, leaving plenty of room between them, and bake in a preheated oven. The original recipe said to bake for 11 to 12 minutes, warning that they would be soft. I did this on the first batch, letting them cool for a few minutes on the baking sheet before transferring to a cooling rack to cool completely. This gave the cookies a really brownie-like texture. On the second batch, I baked for 15 minutes, and found the texture to be closer to a normal cookie − and I liked them even better that way!

Freezer: As with most cookies, you can freeze the balls of dough in a plastic wrap-covered baking sheet. When they are fully frozen, transfer them into a Ziploc bag. To bake, take them straight from the freezer to the oven, baking for a couple extra minutes.

Watermelon-Mint Agua Fresca

Versão em português

Agua Fresca

For the third recipe of the Summer Tertulias, I decided to make the first drink of the blog! 🙂 While researching “summer recipes” on Pinterest, I came across “agua fresca,” a very refreshing Mexican drink – the middle point between juice and flavored water 😀

Among the several options of agua fresca, I decided on this Epicurious version, which has an interesting detail: homemade mint syrup. I had never made syrup before, and was surprised at how easy it is! The coolest thing is that you can use the same syrup to make pineapple agua fresca!

For a big pitcher of agua fresca, you’ll need:

5 cups of watermelon, seeded – I used half a medium-sized watermelon and decided that was 5 cups 😀 For the pineapple version, I used roughly 2 cups of fresh pineapple, chopped.

1/4 cup of lemon juice

A LOT OF ICE (I used two trays)

For the mint syrup:

1/4 cup mint leaves

1/4 cup sugar

1/4 cup water

Agua Fresca

In a small saucepan, place all the ingredients of the syrup and bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring well to dissolve the sugar. Remove from heat and let it chill completely.

While the syrup cools down, remove the seeds of the watermelon and chop it. When I was done chopping, I remembered I had a pineapple that needed to be used as well. As I had doubled the syrup recipe, I decided to make pineapple agua fresca – the method was exactly the same, but I only used 2 cups of chopped pineapple.

Place the watermelon, the lemon juice, and the mint syrup in a blender and blend until smooth. Strain the contents directly over the pitcher. Add two cups of water, mix well, and add plenty of ice. Serve ice cold!

Freezer: Place the agua fresca in a popsicle mold and freeze – it will be a hit! 🙂

Phoebe’s Cookies – OK, Nestlé Toll House Cookies

Versão em Português

Cookies da Phoebe

(If you don’t know why I call these “Phoebe’s Cookies,” stop reading this and go watch Friends, season 7, episode 3)

There’s no better way of finishing the Christmas Tertulias than with Phoebe’s grandma’s cookies! 🙂 I had wanted to try these ever since I first watched that episode, in 2000 something. When I moved to Uruguay, I finally looked up the recipe and tried it. In fact, I’ve made these cookies so many times that I had to search the blog files to make sure I hadn’t posted them yet! 😀

And the most important thing is: you can still make them for Christmas! Did you forget to buy stocking stuffers? Phoebe’s Cookies to the rescue! Your children need to leave some cookies for Santa? He’ll like these better than any store-bought cookie! 🙂

I wanted to follow the original recipe strictly, for the pictures, but I ended up making a tiny alteration: I swapped ½ cup of walnuts for ½ cup of chocolate chips, because I had chopped more nuts than necessary. 😀

You’ll need:

200 g butter, room temperature

3/4 cup white sugar

3/4 cup brown sugar

1 tsp vanilla extract

2 eggs

2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1 tsp baking powder

1 tsp salt

2 cups chocolate chips – If you can’t find real chocolate chips (aka not the gross hydrogenated fat, ewww), just chop some normal chocolate bars! I used 1 ½ cups of mini chocolate chips, 50% cocoa.

1 cup of walnuts, chopped (measure, then chop) – as I said before, I used 1 ½ cup.

Cookies da Phoebe

In a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, mix the butter and sugar for approximately 3 minutes, until it’s creamy. Add the vanilla and eggs, one at a time, mixing a little more.

In a bowl, use a whisk to combine the flour, baking powder and salt. Add this mixture to the stand mixer in thirds. The original recipe said to continue using the stand mixer to incorporate the flour mix, but I prefer to do this step using a silicon spatula, to make sure I don’t overwork the dough. It takes a little muscle strength, but I think it’s worth it! 😀

When you can’t see flecks of flour in your dough anymore, it’s time to add the chocolate chips and the nuts. Use a silicon spatula to mix it well.

As I still don’t have a cookie scoop, I had to shape them by hand. My suggestion: sit in front of the TV/computer, put on an episode of your favorite show, and shape! It will take a while. 😀 The original recipe calls for 1 Tbsp of dough per cookie, but I thought they turned out too big, so I only used ½ Tbsp per cookie.

Place the cookies on a baking sheet, lined with parchment paper, leaving approximately 2 cm of room between them. Bake in a pre-heated oven for approximately 15 minutes. Remove the cookies from the sheet and let them cool on a rack. When they are COMPLETELY cooled (it may take a while if you’re in the Southern Hemisphere!), place them in a nice box or jar and they’re ready to be gifted! 🙂

Tip: If you’re using the same baking sheet to bake multiple batches, cool it before adding the second batch, so that the cookies won’t spread too much in the oven. I usually remove the baked cookies (and the parchment paper, obviously) and place the sheet under running tap water for a few seconds, until it’s cool enough for me to touch it with my bare hands. Then, I dry it with a cloth and it’s ready for the second batch!

Freezer: If you don’t want to bake the entire batch on the same day, flash freeze the dough balls on a tray. When they are completely frozen, transfer them to a ziploc bag – they’ll last up to three months in the freezer. To bake, place the frozen balls on the prepared baking sheet and bake for a few extra minutes! It’s that easy! 🙂

Parmesan Muffins

Versão em português

Muffin de Parmesão

Have you checked out the new blog sections? 😉

To continue our Muffin Tertulias, it was time to try a special recipe I had found (by chance) on Pinterest! Theoriginal recipe said that this muffin was just like Starbucks’, but I disagree. Starbucks’ muffins are always too dry! 😀

These were an absolute hit – they disappeared as soon as they came out of the oven, and I had to “hide” these two for the picture!

For 12 muffins, you’ll need:

250 mL milk

10 g instant yeast

250 g all-purpose flour

1 Tbsp sugar

1 tsp salt

Black pepper and oregano

200 g parmesan, coarsely grated – save a bit for decorating the top of the muffins

1 egg

100 g melted butter

Muffin de Parmesão

As this recipe calls for instant yeast, the process is a bit different than normal muffins. But it’s still quick! 🙂

Mix the yeast with the (warm) milk and let it foam. In a bowl, mix the flour with the salt, black pepper, and oregano.

Meanwhile, melt the butter and let it cool down a bit. When the butter has been cooled down, mix in the egg and the milk with yeast. Add the flour mix and most of the grated cheese. As always, the idea is to mix with a rubber spatula just until you can’t see any more flour – don’t knead! 🙂

Divide the dough into the cups, always filling only up to 3/4 of the capacity, and cover with the reserved grated cheese.

Now the process is different: as this is a yeasted dough, let it rest for 1 hour – it didn’t reeeeally rise much during that period, but I didn’t worry about it.

Bake in a pre-heated oven for 30 minutes, or until it turns golden and passes the toothpick test.

Cool it down a little bit and eat!

In the unlikely event of leftovers, just place them in a ziploc bag and freeze!

Chocolate and Yoghurt Muffins

Versão em português

Muffin de Chocolate e Iogurte

To end our Muffin Tertulias, nothing better than a VERY CHOCOLATY chocolate muffin – there’s cocoa and chocolate in the recipe! In addition, as the recipe calls for yoghurt, these are very soft. In fact, they were tastier on the second day!

The only part that takes a little bit of work is chopping the chocolate! I use normal chocolate, because I can’t find decent chocolate chips (only those with hydrogenated fat, ewwww). If you find decent chocolate chips, your muffins will be even prettier!

This recipe yields A LOT: I got 12 normal muffins and 15 mini-muffins! I think it would yield 16-18 normal-sized muffins .

You’ll need:

2 cups all-purpose flour

1 cup sugar

3/4 cups dark chocolate chips – I’ll add more next time!

1/2 cup cocoa powder

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 egg

1 cup whole-fat unsweetened yoghurt

1/2 cup milk

1/2 cup vegetable oil

1/4 cup white chocolate chips, for decorating

Muffin de Chocolate e Iogurte

This is the easiest of all the recipes in this series – we don’t even need to melt the butter! 🙂

In the first bowl (the smallest), mix the dry ingredients. In the second bowl (a bigger one that can fit all the ingredients), mix the wet ingredients. Combine the dry and wet mixtures with a rubber spatula. As always, don’t mix too much – muffin batter really is a little lumpier than cake batter, so just mix until you can’t see flour specks anymore!

Fill the muffin cups, always to only 3/4 full. Sprinkle a few white chocolate chips on the top and bake for 20 minutes, or until they pass the toothpick test! 🙂

Let them cool down on a rack and CHOW DOWN!

Blueberry Muffins

Versão em português

Muffins de Mirtilo

To continue the Muffin Tertulias, I decided to repeat a wonderful recipe, which I had never photographed:Technicolor Kitchen’s blueberry muffins!

As I had already made donut muffins, I decided to skip the topping this time. No regrets! 🙂 If you’re like my dad, who doesn’t care for raw blueberries, you should know that they are much tastier once baked!

For 12 muffins, you’ll need

255 g flour

100 g sugar

2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp salt

3/4 cup buttermilk – I can’t buy buttermilk at the store, so I make my own, by putting 1 Tbsp lemon juice (vinegar would work too) in the measuring cup, filling it to the 3/4 mark with whole milk, and letting it sit for 10-15 minutes.

90 g butter, melted

2 eggs

Zest of 1 lemon – do not omit, it makes all the difference!

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 1/2 cup blueberries – mine were frozen, and they went from the freezer straight to the batter!

Muffins de Mirtilo

Start by preparing the buttermilk and melting the butter – if you want to be savvy, melt the butter in a pan that is big enough to mix the batter! 😀

Mix the dry ingredients in a bowl using a whisk to make sure everything is nicely mixed and lump-free.

When the melted butter cools down a bit, mix in the eggs, the vanilla extract, and the buttermilk. Add the dry mix and mix A LITTLE with a rubber spatula – don’t mix the batter too much, or the muffins will harden: when you can’t see specks of flour, you’re done!

Add the blueberries to the batter and pour into the muffin cups – remember to fill only to 3/4 of the capacity, so they won’t overflow in the oven!

Bake for 25 minutes, or until they are golden/toothpick comes out clean… you know the deal. Let them cool on a wire rack – if you try to eat them while they’re hot, the dough sticks to the paper liner; it’s a nightmare. #truestory #learnedbydoing

To freeze: just place the cooled muffins in a ziploc bag! 🙂 They should last up to three months in the freezer, but only if you forget they are there, otherwise they get eaten WELL BEFORE that! 😀

Cornmeal and Cheese Muffins

Versão em português

After our break for the Olympics (withdrawal syndrome, anyone? 😉 ), it’s time for a new series! Muffins, or “let’s use that muffin tin we bought in 2011 and haven’t used ever since” 😀

While I was choosing the recipes for this series, Sky made a specific request: he wanted a cornbread, but with cheese. I started researching and found this recipe, which I kinda followed – I used mozzarella because that’s what I had at home, I forgot to add herbs, used homemade buttermilk, you know how it goes.

When they came out of the oven, Sky ate three at once. I had one, liked it, but I didn’t fell in love with it. On the next day, though, I thawed one of the soups from the last series (the carrot one!) and decided to re-heat the muffins. TOTAL SUCCESS!! This was the perfect side for the soup!

For 12 muffins, you’ll need:

1 cup all-purpose flour

1 cup cornmeal

1/4 cup sugar

1 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

1 tsp salt – if your cheese is too salty, use less salt here!

2 garlic cloves – I used 3 big ones

1 cup of grated cheddar cheese – I used mozzarella, but any cheese that melts well will do.

2 eggs

1 cup buttermilk – to make at home, put 1 Tbsp lemon juice (vinegar would work too) in the measuring cup, fill it with whole milk, and let it sit for 10-15 minutes. Use the entire cup in the recipe.

1/3 cup butter, melted

Muffin Salgado de Fubá e Queijo

The best thing about muffins is they are usually VERY easy to make. If you use paper liners, you don’t even have to butter the tin! 🙂

Start by preparing your buttermilk if you can’t buy it at the store. Meanwhile, take the muffin tin out of the cabinet, rinse it because I know it’s been WAAAAY too long, dry it and put the paper liners on it.

Melt the butter in a pan large enough to mix all the other ingredients, so there are less dishes to do at the end! 😀 When the butter is melted, let it cool a bit before adding the buttermilk and the eggs – we don’t want scrambled eggs in our muffins! Set aside.

In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add the cheese and toss it with the mixture. Place the dry mix over the wet mix and gently stir with a rubber spatula – you shouldn’t overwork a muffin batter, or else your muffins will be rock-hard! :/ Just mix until you can’t see flour specks anymore.

Place the batter in the tin – fill only to 3/4 capacity, so they won’t overflow in the oven. This time, I got exactly 12 muffins. Bake in a pre-heated oven for 20 minutes, give or take, or until they pass the toothpick test!

Serve warm with a nice hot soup!

To freeze, all you have to do is place the cooled muffins in a ziploc bag! 🙂