vanilla extract

Nutella Cupcakes

This Nutella Cupcakes Recipe features some delicious Nutella-filled chocolate cupcakes, topped with a heavenly Nutella frosting.

A few weekends ago, I woke up on a Saturday morning and just felt like baking. My calendar was open, the day was cloudy and cozy and cool, and I had a new jar of Nutella that was calling my name. So I padded to the kitchen in my slippers to make a warm cup of coffee. And then perhaps for the first time in a long while, I decided to actually take my time baking this batch of Nutella cupcakes. It was wonderful. I don’t know about you, but so often when I’m in the kitchen, I find myself falling into extreme-efficiency mode. And for better and worse, I’ve become pretty darn good at it. I can whip up a batch of fudge, saute a pan of fajitas, play fetch with my dog, return a few emails, and watch an episode of “Friday Night Lights” at the same time, and somehow things usually (miraculously!) turn out ok. But in the rush and chaos of it all, I too often miss out on some of the simple joys of cooking. So I decided that this particular Saturday morning would be different.

Read more

Salted Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies {great food blogger cookie swap}

Hooray! Today is the big reveal day for the Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap ’12, when food bloggers everywhere are posting the recipes for their cookies that were mailed all across the nation. And with hundreds bloggers participating this year, there were a lot of delicious cookies being swapped! (Just type the hashtag #fbcookieswap into Instagram or Twitter, and you can see all of the sweetness for yourself!)

The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap 2012

Read more

Favorite Vanilla Cupcakes

I love coming up with creative new cupcake flavors. And I love being served creative new cupcake flavors. But at the end of the day, if given a choice between, well, pretty much any kind of cupcake and a vanilla cupcake, that delicious little white cupcake almost always wins.

I don’t know what it is about it, but I love a good vanilla cupcake. Always have. Always will.

Read more

Cranberry Bliss Cookies

‘Tis the season for cool mornings, warm coffee, and one of my other winter favorites — Cranberry Bliss season at Starbucks!

If any of you have ever tried their heavenly cranberry bliss bars laced with white chocolate and cranberries, you know the reason why these treats fly off the pastry shelves each day. So for my fall baking season this year, I decided to experiment and try translating this favorite into a cookie. Hence the name, “Cranberry Bliss Cookies”!

Read more

Skillet Chocolate Chip Cookie

Oh yes. That is one big skillet chocolate chip cookie.

And even better — the recipe is featured in the new Picky Palate Cookbook from a blogger I absolutely adore — Jenny from (you guessed it) Picky Palate!!!

Read more

Homemade White Hot Chocolate

When I was in college, I used to be able to drink coffee at all hours of the day. 7am, 2pm, 2am…my friends and I pretty much lived at the coffee shop near campus, and the caffeine never fazed me. (And I admit I was a little skeptical of my friends who “swore” coffee would keep them up if they drank it too late in the day!)

But apparently what goes around comes around. A few years ago, literally overnight it seemed like my body decided to make the switch. And I now fall into the Don’t-Let-Any-Caffeine-Near-Me-After-3pm category. (Which even includes decaf, which I swear will keep me up half of the night too!) I know. Call it adulthood, but I’m now “that” person. :)

Read more