Chocolate Peppermint Bread


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This easy recipe for Chocolate Peppermint Bread is bursting with chocolate and peppermint flavors and is perfect for the holiday season.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup BUTTER, room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cups SUGAR
  • 3/4 teaspoon SALT
  • 1 teaspoon VANILLA EXTRACT
  • 1 teaspoon PEPPERMINT EXTRACT
  • 1/2 teaspoon BAKING POWDER
  • 2/3 cup COCOA POWDER
  • 3 EGGS
  • 1 1/4 cup FLOUR
  • 3/4 cup MILK
  • 10 CHOCOLATE SANDWICH COOKIES, regular or peppermint version, coarsely chopped (optional)
  • 1/3 cup ANDES PEPPERMINT CRUNCH CHIPS, plus more for garnish (optional)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray the bottom and 2 inches up the sides of a 9×5 inch loaf pan with Pam Cooking Spray for Baking.
  2. In a mixing bowl, combine butter, sugar, salt, extracts, baking powder and cocoa powder. Add the eggs one at a time and mix well. With the mixer on low, add half of the flour. Pour in the milk and then the remaining flour. Stop mixing when everything is just incorporated. Fold in the chocolate sandwich cookies if using.
  3. Pour into pan and bake for 60-75 minutes, or until a toothpick tests clean. Cool in the pan for 10 minutes. If needed use a plastic or rubber utensil to loosen the bread from the edge of the pan (I didn’t have to do this when I made this bread, but you might depending on your pan) Remove from pan and allow to cool completely on a wire rack before cutting.
  4. If desired, melt peppermint crunch chips for about 30 seconds in the microwave, stir and heat about 20 seconds more. Stir until smooth and drizzle over cooled bread. Sprinkle with additional peppermint crunch chips. Allow the drizzle to harden slightly before slicing bread.

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This is What Happens when You Cook Everything Delicious Inside a Pumpkin


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Pumpkin Stuffed with Everything Good

The name says it all: this pumpkin is filled with the savory goodness of bacon, cheese, and bread; it makes a hearty main course or side dish. The recipe comes from “Around My French Table,” by Dorie Greenspan.

1 (3-pound) pumpkin
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
1/4 pound stale bread, thinly sliced and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1/4 pound Gruyere, Emmenthal, or cheddar cheese (or a mix of all three), cut into 1/2-inch cubes
2 to 3 cloves garlic, split, germ removed, and coarsely chopped
4 slices bacon, cooked until crisp, drained, and chopped
1/4 cup chopped fresh chives or sliced scallions
1 tablespoon minced fresh thyme
1/2 cup heavy cream
Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees with a rack set in the center of the oven. Line a baking sheet with a nonstick baking mat or use a Dutch oven that is slightly larger in diameter than your pumpkin (in which case, you will need to serve your pumpkin from the Dutch oven, as it may stick, but it will keep its shape better this way).

2. Using a sharp, sturdy knife, cut off top of pumpkin, working around the top with the knife inserted at a 45-degree angle to cut off enough to make it easy to work inside the pumpkin; reserve top. Remove seeds and strings from cap and pumpkin. Season inside of pumpkin generously with salt and pepper. Place on prepared baking sheet or in Dutch oven; set aside.

3. In a large bowl, toss together bread, cheese, garlic, bacon, chives, and thyme until well combined. Pack into pumpkin; it should be well filled but not overstuffed. You may need to add some bread and cheese or some of the filling may not be necessary to use. In a small bowl, stir cream and nutmeg to combine. Pour over filling; filling should be moist but not swimming in cream — you may need to use more or less accordingly.

4. Place top on pumpkin and transfer to oven; cook until filling is bubbling and pumpkin flesh is tender, about 1 hour and 30 minutes. Remove top and continue baking until liquid is slightly evaporated and top of filling is browned, 20 to 30 minutes more.

5. Carefully transfer pumpkin to a serving platter (or serve in Dutch oven, if using) and serve.

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Easy Homemade Recipes: Pumpkin Banana Bread


I may have mentioned once or twice that I am a huge fan of pumpkin.  What I don’t really tell people is that I start my cooking with pumpkin the beginning of August and don’t stop until at least January.  And the months that Im not baking, Im thinking of new recipes to try and more ways to add a little more orange to my life.  [True story.]  Like today’s easy homemade recipe, I think I made this in January.  Its one of my favorite recipes because it has all my favorite things in one place.  Pumpkin, bananas and chocolate chips.  Yes, please!

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I was going to make the title of this post ‘Pumpkin banana bread.. with chocolate chips!’ but who doesn’t put chocolate chips in their banana bread?  Ok, I know.  Most people don’t add the chocolate chips, I just think that chocolate and banana go great together.  [Case in point – chocolate covered banana popsicles.]  And pumpkin and chocolate together isn’t too shabby either.  [Its pretty amazing actually.]

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To make this easy homemade recipe you will need:

  • Butter cake mix
  • Two ripe bananas
  • 1 Can of pumpkin puree
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips
  • 1/4 cup of oil

Preheat the oven to 350.  Mash your bananas and add them to the cake mix.  Pour in the oil [I used canola], pumpkin and mix well.  Add the chocolate chips.  Spray your bread pan before adding the mixture.  Bake for 35-40 minutes at 350 degrees.

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This bread came out so moist it was crazy.  I think the banana and the oil together make it just melt in your mouth delicious.  And there are no eggs since I used the mashed bananas.  If it weren’t for the chocolate chips and the cake mix, I’d even go so far as to say this is healthy.  I mean its got two fruits baked in, it has to be healthy.  Right?  [Just say yes.]

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The Season’s Best Slow Cooker Recipes


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This classic French dish of chicken stewed with wine becomes so easy when made in a slow cooker.

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Homemade Krispy Kreme Doughnuts!!!


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Homemade Krispy Kremes — Yes, this is the actual recipe!
*To SAVE this recipe, be sure to click SHARE so it will store on your personal page.*

Ingredients:
3 tbsp milk
3 tbsp boiling water
1 tsp dry active yeast
8 oz all purpose flour (a little under 2 cups – I recommend you measure and weigh. See my note above)
1 1/2 oz sugar (about 3 tablespoons)
1 egg
1 oz butter, cold to room temperature (just don’t melt it, okay?)
dash of salt

Enough oil to cover the bottom few inches of a wok, or a deep fryer.

Directions:
In a large measuring jug, combine the milk and boiling water. Add a teaspoon of the sugar and the yeast. Stir it gently, then leave it in a warm place for the yeast to activate (aka foam).
In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, the rest of the sugar, and the salt. Cut in the butter using your fingers or a pastry blender, until it resembles crumbs.
Add the egg (give it a quick beat) and yeast mixture to the flour mix, and mix into a smooth dough. This usually takes about 5 minutes of mixing.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly-floured counter and knead for about 5 to 10 minutes—it should feel springy and little bubbles should form under the surface. Place it back in the bowl, cover with a cloth or plastic wrap, and let rise for about an hour until double in size.
Once risen, place the dough onto the counter and cut it into 4 pieces. One piece at a time, stretch it into a long rope about an inch to an inch and a half wide. Cut strips about an inch long, ball em up with your hands, and place them on a baking tray or wire rack to wait.
Cover the doughnuts holes with a cloth to rise while you heat the oil to 375F.
Place the doughnuts into the oil and fry until golden brown on each side, about 2 minutes. Be sure to fry only a few at a time so they don’t overcrowd and stick together.
Drain on a paper towel or wire rack over a cloth, before glazing them. Be sure to glaze them warm, or else they won’t get that delicious coverage!

Glaze:
1/3 cup butter
2 cups confectioners’ sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
4 tablespoons hot water or as needed

A brief note: I recommend a scale, as not all flours (and cup measurements) are made equal.
2 cups of my Canadian flour in my Canadian cups on my scale might be more or less than yours.
If you don’t have a scale, start at 1 1/2 cups and work your way up from there.

Recipe via “Now You’re Cook’in”

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