Category Archives: Baking

Peanut Butter One Bowl Brownies

A little art from the kitchen

I like to keep things simple, delicious but simple. A few years ago I became obsessed with high quality chocolate that doesn’t have milk (making it a useful ingredient if you have lactose sensitive family or friends). I also love peanut butter and while there are a lot of recipes for peanut butter brownies, I found most wanted you to make a peanut butter frosting and I couldn’t be bothered. 

  
Peanut Butter Brownies

1 1/2 stick of butter (sliced)

7 ounces of good chocolate (I generally chop up high quality chocolate but you could use chips as well)

2 cups sugar

3 eggs

1 tsp vanilla

1 cup flour

1/2 cup creamy peanut butter

Chop chocolate and put in microwave safe bowl with the butter. Heat until the butter melts and stir until the chocolate is completely melted. 

Add sugar and mix well. Then add the eggs and vanilla. Lastly, add the flour and mix until combined. 

Pour into a 9×9 or brownie pan lined with foil and either greased or sprayed with non-stick spray. 

Heat the peanut butter for maybe 30 seconds in a glass measuring cup. Stir and then drizzle on top of the brownie batter (bring on your inner jackson pollack. Well don’t splatter) 

Bake at 350 for anywhere between 30 and 40 minutes. You don’t want the center to jiggle. 

Cool completely and cut into 1 inch or so squares – these little guys are super rich! 

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The best banana bread

We’ve all been there, you had high hopes of eating those bananas the minute they are perfectly ripe. But, you blinked and they went from perfection to perfect for baking.
This bread has a lot of bananas in it, so you almost have to plan for it. It also has an ingredient you will almost never find in our recipes, vegetable shortening. Butter just doesn’t give the right texture so shortening it is.

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The Best Banana Bread

1 1/2 cups sugar
3/4 cup vegetable shortening
2 eggs
7 ripe, peeled, mashed bananas
2 1/4 cups flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
3/4 cup chopped walnuts
3/4 cup chocolate chips

Cream the sugar and shortening together. Add eggs one at a time until mixed then add the bananas all at once and the vanilla.
Add the baking soda, powder and salt. Then add the flour.
Remove from mixer and fold in nuts and chocolate chips.

Grease and flour a 9 x 13 pan (i generally use glass. This bread is really more cake like. You could do it in bread molds but I am lazy).

Pour mixture into pan and spread it out so it is even. Bake at 325 for 45 minutes.

Let cool completely and enjoy!

A Seinfeld dilema – to poppyseed or not? Acme Baking Company Almond Poppyseed Muffins

Baking on a hot day in a kitchen without air conditioning calls for something quick where the oven will only be on for maybe an hour tops! Enter Acme Baking Company Almond Poppyseed Muffins. These aren’t those giant muffins you find at big box stores but the flavor is pretty close.

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Almond Poppyseed Muffins

3 cups flour
1 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
2 1/2 cups sugar
3 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 teaspoons almond extract
1 1/2 tablespoons poppyseeds
1 1/2 cups milk

Whisk together dry ingredients. In a separate large bowl, mix the eggs, sugar, extracts, poppyseeds and milk. Add the dry to the wet and mix just until combined. Overmixing will cause tough muffins and no one likes a tough muffin.

Using a large cookie scoop fill lined muffin tins. Batter makes exactly 2 dozen muffins.

Bake at 350 for 18-20 minutes. The tops should be lightly golden.

Let cool and enjoy! If you prefer a more moist muffin you can make a simple glaze with powdered sugar, milk and a little almond extract.

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Another week another Acme Muffin Recipe – Blueberry Yum!

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The basics are almost always the easiest thing to bake and blueberry muffins are really no exception. There is no reasonh you should ever buy a box of blueberry muffin mix!

Acme Blueberry Muffins

1 1/2 cup flour
Heaping 1/4 cup sugar
1tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
4 tbsp melted butter (cool)
3/4 cup milk
1 egg
1 cup fresh or thawed frozen blueberries

Sift together the dry ingredients. In a seperate bowl whisk together the egg and milk. Add butter to the egg mixture.

Make a well in the dry ingredients and pour the wet into the dry. Mix until combined but not over mixed, it will still look a little lumpy.

In yet another bowl, toss the blueberries in 1 tsp flour, this helps them from bleeding in your batter. Fold the blueberries into the batter.

This batter made 11 standard size muffins.
Bake at 40″ degrees for 16-18 minutes.

Acme Baking Company Chocolate Chip Muffin

20130609-194312.jpgIt seems to have become a thing around here, each week on Sunday afternoon I bake a batch of muffins to enjoy for breaky the next week. This week there were some mini chocolate chips screaming out to be used up so it became obvious that it was time to tackle the Chocolate Chip Muffin.

Micro Mini Chocolate Chip Muffins

1 cup flour
1/2 cup sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 egg
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon vanilla
3/4 cup milk
Heaping handful of mini chocolate chips

Whisk together the dry ingredients in one bowl. Then lightly beat the egg, milk, oil and vanilla in another. Add wet to dry and mix just until incorporated. Fold in your chocolate chips.

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Prepare 12 cupcakes (either with a liner or grease and flour). I made exactly 12 using a large cookie scoop about 3/4 full. So probably a heaping 1/3 cup in each cupcake.

Bake for 16 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

These are a fairly dense muffins and you could add a little rock sugar to the top before baking to kick up the sweetness a little.

Acme Baking Company Vanilla Marshmallows

The Acme Baking Company Christmas box for 2012 contained traditional
treats like ginger thins, fudge, chocolate chip cookies and some more
unique offerings. But, every year new things have to be tried and
included and this year was the year of the marshmallow. Boozy and
traditional graced boxes prepared for families with short people (ie
kids).

Boozy marshmallows are a little challenging to make but I promise to
post a recipe and how to instructions eventually. For now, here is my
favorite, simple vanilla marshmallow recipe. Whip some up, toss them
into hot chocolate, on the end of a stick to toasting or just eat them
straight out of the container.

Vanilla Marshmallows

As with all candy making you want to prepare your pan beforehand. We
used an 8×10 pan, you can use something smaller you will just have
slightly thicker marshmallows. Spray the pan with non-stick spray and
wipe most of it out with a paper towel. Sprinkle with powdered sugar;
make sure to coat the pan well.

1/2 cup very cold water
3 packets of gelatin (found in your grocery store near the Jello)

Place the cold water in the bowl of your stand mixer and sprinkle the
gelatin over it before you start making the sugar syrup on the stove.
Let stand.

2/3 cup light corn syrup
2 cups sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup water

Combine in a 6qt heavy sauce pan. Heat on medium heat and stir until
the sugar dissolves. Stop stirring once the sugar is dissolved and let
the mixture come to a boil – no need to increase the heat. Once the
mixture comes to a boil, let it go for 1 minute and then remove from
the heat.

2 teaspoons vanilla (or other extract)
Attach the whisk attachment to your mixer and with your mixer on low,
slowly pour the hot syrup into the bowl in a steady stream. Once
combined increase the speed of your mixer to medium high – after a few
minutes add the vanilla and continue to whip for about 12 minutes
total.

Once the mixture if fully whipped it will be fluffy and incredibly
sticky. Coat a rubber spatula or large offset knife with non-stick
spray and scrape out your bowl into your prepared pan. Be patient but
continue to work the mixture until it is spread in evenly in the pan.
Top with a generous coat of powdered sugar and let stand on your
counter for 3 hours or overnight.

There really is not anything you can do to expedite this process, it
just takes this long to firm up. Once firm, lift your marshmallows out
of the pan and place on a cutting board. I used a greased pizza cutter
to cut squares, but you could use shaped cookie cutters for fun
shapes. Toss cut marshmallows into a bowl of powdered sugar to
eliminate sticky edges.

Package in airtight containers. These marshmallows will last about 1 month.

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A little lemon in your honey – uniquely flavored frosted cookies

Lemon Honey Dough Cutout Scraps

At Acme Baking Company, we are always trying to find unique flavor combinations that result in delicious baked goods. This recipe was less of a “find” and more of a “I guess it is time to share it” treat. I have been making these cookies since I was a little girl, they are a staple at Christmas in our family and I have never come across anyone else who makes them.

A big plus, you can make the dough, roll, cut, and bake weeks in advance because these cookies freeze perfectly – when you are ready to finish them up take them out of the freezer, allow them to thaw and frost as desired. I typically use a thick buttercream frosting which is flavorful and rich but if you prefer more refined decorations the flavor in this cookie would shine equally with a basic royal icing.

Lemon Honey Cutout Cookies

Ingredients:
2/3 c. shortening
2/3 c. granulated sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp lemon extract
1 1/3 c. honey
5 1/2 c. flour
2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp salt

Cream together the shortening and sugar, add the eggs, lemon extract and honey. Sift together the dry ingredients and add the creamed mixture.

Divide into 4 balls of dough, flatted to disk shapes and wrap in cling wrap. Chill at least 1 hour, then, on a floured surface, roll each dough disk out to about 1/4″ thickness. It is important that your thickness is consistent because you want all your cookies to bake in the same amount of time. Cut out in desired shapes. Place on parchment lined cookie sheets.

Bake at 375 for 8-10 minutes or until  you can gently touch the cookie and no fingerprint remains. Cool completely and either freeze or frost as desired.

Recipe yield will vary based on the cookie cutter size, but on average you shoudl get about 5 dozen cookies.