Are “chocolate pots” a new thing? I had never heard of them before August 24, 2009, when I was in the hospital with my newborn baby. I was trying to decide on my dinner from the hospital menu, and when I got to the desserts, I saw “chocolate pot”. Continue reading
I love being back in Sydney. There are so many amazing bakeries to explore. I’ve been back in Sydney for almost 6 months but I’ve hardly explored outside of my suburb, mostly because the most amazing bakeries are at least one hour away from me (or at least the ones I know about are!). On a recent trip to the library to borrow a back issue of delicious. magazine (November 2009) I found a photo reference to Sweetness The Patisserie at Epping. I instantly perked up because Epping is not far away from me at all. A few days later, I was standing inside of Sweetness The Patisserie with my 2-year-old son, trying to make a decision on what to buy from this beautiful shop.
The shop is indeed beautiful. I wasn’t brave enough to ask if I could take a photo inside the shop, so all you get is this sideways shot of the outside! The inside of the shop is loaded with sweet treats of all kinds, including macarons, marshmallows, fudge, toffee, truffles, or, easier yet, let’s just say that if it’s sweet, it’s in this shop!
Wow, the title of this post is a mouthful! If you can think of an easier name for these cupcakes, just let me know! These cupcakes were created for November’s Cupcake Hero challenge ingredient, peanut butter. I’ve already entered one cupcake into the competition this month, but I just love peanut butter so there was no way I could only enter just one.
My second entry is a chocolate cupcake with chocolate chips and finely chopped crispy bacon baked inside. It is frosted with peanut butter frosting, sprinkled with finely chopped toffee and topped off with a square of crispy bacon.
I’m not too fond of hard candy, but I’ve been determined to make my own toffee for a few months now. I kept putting it off because, like a lot of others, I was scared of using the candy thermometer! In my search for an easy toffee recipe, I came across Paula Deen’s, which looked super easy.
So I gave it a go and was surprised at how easy it actually was. The only part of the recipe that wasn’t entirely clear was adding the vanilla and salt – I found that I needed to really stir the vanilla in there to get it evenly mixed and for it turn that beautiful caramelly-toffee color.
After spreading the toffee in the cookie sheet and spreading out the chocolate with an offset spatula, I topped about 1/4 of the toffee with M&M’s, for the kids, another 1/4 with chopped pecans, and the rest I left plain. After it was completely cool (I ended up putting it in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes!) and the chocolate was hardened, I chopped it into pieces.
Obviously I did not strictly follow Paula Deen’s recipe – she had mixed the pecans into the actual toffee and left the top of the chocolate plain.
The toffee tasted fantastic and was absolutely perfect! I’d highly recommend this super easy recipe for toffee and don’t be scared of using a candy thermometer! :)
This recipe for peanut butter toffee cookies was recently a Cookie of the Day at the Martha Stewart website. I’ve been interested in toffee lately, so I thought that this recipe might be a good way to incorporate some toffee into my baking.
I used 2 Hershey’s brand Heath bars for this recipe, just the regular 1.4-ounce size you can find in the grocery store’s checkout lane.
I contemplated on using a different peanut butter cookie base, one that I knew and loved, but decided I’d go ahead with the one in the recipe. A different cookie recipe could definitely be used, as long as the cookie will be thick enough to distribute and hold the toffee pieces nicely (i.e. not a thin cookie).
I got exactly 24 cookies. They’re pretty good, although as I suspected, I’m not totally fond of the peanut butter cookie itself. It’s a slightly crunchier sort of cookie with softer insides; I think the crunch of the toffee goes well with the crunchiness of the cookie, though.
I really do like the idea of toffee pieces in cookies now, and I suspect I’ll be making different varieties of cookies with toffee in the future. :)