Oct 24, 2012

Sweet Treats

With the availability of caramel chips and butterscotch chips came requests for recipes to go with these exciting new ingredients.  While intrepid cooks may open a non-kosher cookbook and try any recipe that catches their fancy, some are not sure how to substitute ingredients to keep a recipe pareve. Others people are just not comfortable with an unfamiliar recipe and will only try something recommended by a friend. Well, here are recipes from your friends at The Peppermill. We’ve come up with some delicious new ways to put these new ingredients to use in your recipe repertoire. We think you’re gonna love them!

What could be better than caramel, hazelnuts and chocolate all in one cookie!
1 cup margarine, softened (2 sticks)
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup light brown sugar
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
1 cup caramel chips
1 cup hazelnuts, chopped (filberts)
1 cup real semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or silpat baking mats.
Cream the margarine until light. Gradually add the sugars and continue beating until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs, vanilla and baking soda. Beat well then stir in the flour. Stir in the caramel chips, chopped hazelnuts and chocolate chips and mix well.
Drop dough by teaspoonfuls onto the prepared baking sheets. Bake cookies for 9-10 minutes. They may not look done but will continue baking when removed from the oven. Do not over-bake.  Let cool on baking sheets for 5 minutes then remove to racks to finish cooling.

These are a favorite with all my friends! Plus, they take about 5 minutes to prepare.

1/2 cup (1 stick) margarine, room temperature
1 cup packed light-brown sugar
1 large egg
1 cup all-purpose flour (or substitute half the flour with 1/2 cup whole wheat pastry flour)
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
1 cup butterscotch chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease an 8-inch square baking pan with baking spray with flour. Line the bottom and two sides of the pan with a strip of parchment paper, leaving a 2-inch overhang on both sides. Spray the paper, and set pan aside.
Using an electric mixer, cream the margarine and sugar until the mixture is light and fluffy. Add egg, and beat until combined. With mixer on low, gradually add flour and baking soda; mix just until combined. Mix in oats and butterscotch chips. Pour batter into prepared pan.
Smooth batter evenly across the top of the pan using a metal offset spatula. Bake until a toothpick or cake tester inserted in center comes out with only a few moist crumbs attached, 30 to 35 minutes. Let cool in pan 30 minutes.
Grasp overhanging paper, transfer blondies (still on paper) to a wire rack to cool completely. Place on a cutting board (peel off paper); using a serrated knife, cut into 16 small squares.

Caramel chips combined with apple bits for a sophisticated adult treat using chips.

1 cup caramel chips
½ cup dried apples, snipped into little pieces
¼ cup toasted pecans, chopped
¼ teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
16 sheets phyllo dough (strudel dough) thawed
½ cup canola oil
½ cup light brown sugar
Confectioners’ sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper or a silpat baking mat.
Stir together, caramel chips, apple pieces, chopped pecans and spices in a bowl; set aside.
Place one sheet of phyllo on your countertop, leaving the rest covered with a damp towel or paper towel. 
Stir together canola oil and brown sugar. Brush phyllo lightly with oil mixture, using a pastry brush. Place another sheet of phyllo on top the first and once again brush with oil and sugar mixture. Repeat until you have 4 sheets stacked up.
Using a sharp paring knife or pastry wheel, cut sheet into 4 strips lengthwise. Place a heaping tablespoon of filling at the top of one strip, about 1 inch away from the edge. Bring the short edge of the strip diagonally over the filling so it meets the long edge of the strip. Fold the triangle down, keeping the edges of the strip neatly aligned. Continue folding the triangle sideways and down along the entire length of the strip. Place the finished triangle on prepared pan. Repeat with remaining strips. Then repeat with remaining phyllo sheets until all 16 sheets have been used.  Brush triangles with any remaining oil and sugar mixture.
Bake 15 minutes or until golden. Remove from oven and dust with confectioners’ sugar.
Serve warm or at room temperature. These are best enjoyed on the day they are baked.
 You can freeze the triangles raw and bake as needed for an instant warm treat that will make your home smell wonderful!

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