Category Archives: Recipes

chococake

I made this for a birthday yesterday. It was pretty last minute; I sifted and mixed and brewed and threw it into the toaster oven and wah-lah! It came out quite nice, thank you very much. It was supposed to be a secret recipe…but here it is for the whole world to see.

It’s a super moist and rich chocolate cake, but there’s no butter involved so you can feel semi-healthy indulging in it I suppose. I recommend it for birthdays, special occasions, or for impressing of the friends/family.

I sorta vary the recipe whenever I make it and it always comes out fine, but this is what I did this time around:

  • 1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup cocoa powder ( I use Hershey’s)
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup milk (I mixed in some sour cream and heavy cream along with the fat free milk we had)
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • a little less than 1 cup freshly brewed coffee

Directions:

1. Heat oven to 350°F. Grease and flour pans or cupcake pan or whatever you’re using. Oh, I have a tip! I save the paper wrapper that sticks of butter come in. There’s residual butter on them and they’re good for using to spread butter in pans.  Is that weird? It’s a cool tip; I forget who taught me.

2. Sift together sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt in large bowl. In a separate bowl mix egg, milk, oil and vanilla. Slowly combine wet and dry ingredients until mixed.  Stir in coffee (batter will be pretty runny so don’t fret; ’tis normal). Pour batter into prepared pans.

3. Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Watch carefully because sometimes I find the edges cook faster than the center (maybe because my pans are cheap or my oven is a bit off or a bit of both) Cool completely and frost with your favorite frosting. I opted for plain whipped cream sweetened with powdered sugar because the cake is quite dense and rich already.

Enjoy with loved ones, and try not to eat it all in one sitting. It is delish.

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The joy of cookies


Chocolate chip cookies are a classic. On a cold, dreary weekend, it’s nice to spend some time in the kitchen with these. I favor more crisp on the edges/soft in the middle chocolate chip cookies, but these are run-of-the-mill classics. Soft and light and satisfying out of the oven.
The recipe is from “The Joy of Cooking”, which contains a recipe for just about anything you can imagine. It’s 1132 pages long! I have to admit it doesn’t have the best recipes in the world, but it’s concise and a really good reference for when you’re playing around with things in the kitchen.
My only adjustment to the recipe was that I let the dough sit in the fridge overnight. I find this makes the flavor of the cookie even better. Brian says because it gives the flour time to absorb the somethingsomethingscience-ysoundingreasonIdon’tknow. Anyhow, if you can wait, definitely do it. And I also like to bake half and save half the dough in the freezer so you can have cookie dough ready for whenever you want. It’s real convenient and sometimes it’s just a bad idea to have a ton of cookies sitting in the kitchen, waiting to be devoured all at once. Danger!
Here’s the recipe. Oh and I added a few revisions of my own. Enjoy!

Chocolate Chip Cookies
Joy of Cooking

Preheat the oven to 375.

Mix:
1 cup plus 2 Tbs all-purpose flour (I used cake flour bc I couldn’t find all purpose in the house)
1/2 tsp baking soda

Beat in a large bowl until well-blended:
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened (you can make this faster by microwaving 15 seconds, but DO NOT melt!)
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar

Add and beat until well combined:
1 large egg (also at room temp, which you can make faster by submerging in warm water)
1/4 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp vanilla


Stir in the flour mixture until just blended. Stir in 1 cup chocolate chips.
(I added chopped pecans, you can add anything you like or nothing at all.)


Drop the dough by heaping teaspoonfuls about 2 inches apart on the cookie sheets. Bake, 1 sheet at a time, until the cookies are just slightly colored on top and the edges are brown, about 8 – 10 minutes. Let stand briefly, then remove to a rack to cool.

Makes about 36 cookies.