I had never had dulce de leche before I spent a summer in Santa Cruz, Bolivia over 10 years ago. In fact, I’m not sure I had even heard of it before then. But one taste of the sweet, sticky, caramelly spread and I was instantly hooked. I was in Santa Cruz volunteering as a supervisor for Amigos de las Americas and was often in a rush to get out of the door in the morning, but not without having my bread and dulce de leche. It always seemed like an indulgent breakfast – I was essentially starting the day off with dessert – but hey, do as the locals do, right? It certainly gave me something to look forward to when my alarm when off in the morning!
When I came back to the States after 3 months of bread slathered with dulce de leche, I went into a bit of withdrawal. It’s probably better that I didn’t know then how easy dulce de leche is to make, or I would have eaten it by the gallon. Ok, I confess, I still haven’t made it myself, but it’s basically just sweetened condensed milk that’s heated up slowly until it becomes thick and creamy. Sounds easy enough, right? But these days it’s much more accessible in grocery stores (often in the international aisle), making these chocolaty dulce de leche duos even easier to make. Continue reading
It’s hard to believe that summer has come and gone already. Just a week ago temperatures here in Boston were in the high 90s, and now it’s certifiably chilly. As much as I love fall baked goods, I couldn’t help but make one last dessert to bid farewell to summer. This is the ultimate ode to a favorite summer dessert of mine: s’mores. And with this recipe, you can easily have this summer classic any time of year so that when January hits, you can still get your fix of smooth, creamy chocolate, marshmallows, graham crackers, and nuts. No campfire necessary.
The other big incentive for baking these s’more nut bars was to take part in OXO‘s Bake a Difference campaign, benefiting Cookies for Kids’ Cancer. Cookies for Kid’s Cancer was founded to raise money for research to develop new, improved treatments for pediatric cancer. September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month and OXO is working hard to raise money to for Cookies for Kid’s Cancer to help combat the number one disease killer of children in the U.S.
It’s no secret that I love mint and I’m also a huge fan of a perfectly buttery chocolate chip cookie, so it’s no surprise that I love these chocolate chip peppermint M&M cookies. I didn’t even know that M&M made peppermint candies until I saw this recipe posted on Two Peas and Their Pod. I tried to resist the urge, but there was just no way that I could not go out and find the peppermint M&Ms and make these cookies.
Who doesn’t love nutella? I mean really, is there anyone out there that doesn’t love this rich hazelnut and chocolate spread? Hazelnuts and chocolate make for a perfect combo and that’s no exception in this drool-worthy cookie from America’s Test Kitchen.
I love baking with hazelnuts, but I have to be honest – I am less fond of going through the process of removing the skins. It’s not that roasting them and cleaning them off with kitchen towels is that hard, it’s that the perfectionist in me comes out and I get frustrated when I can’t remove every bit of skin. That’s why I was so thrilled to get these roasted unsalted hazelnuts from Oh Nuts that have all of the skin completely removed! It saves a whole step and I can completely get behind that, especially in the busy holiday cookie time of year!