Peppermint Mocha Bundt Cake

The holidays can be stressful. There’s finding the perfect gift for everyone on your list, hosting family functions, attending all those social events you’ve been invited to, finding time to wrap all the gifts that you bought, decorating the house, setting up the tree, etc. It can be A LOT.

So today we’re bringing you a dessert that will have everyone at the table coming back for more, but will keep your time investment to a minimum without sacrificing any flavour.

No rolling cookie dough, no rolling pastry, no multiple batches of cookies to bake- just a couple of bowls, a bundt pan, some time in the oven, and a little love. Can we get an amen? There is definitely a time and a place for those more fiddly holiday specialties. They are usually much loved and time honoured in their yearly presence. We can’t forget about them, but we do want to have some other options for last minute guests, maybe an after Christmas party, when you just want to bring something special that still has lots of holiday flair and pomp.

This bundt cake is sure to make everyone happy. It’s got lots of chocolate, peppermint flavouring, and the slightest hint of coffee so that if you didn’t know that it was there you might not notice it. It makes it the perfect cake for all-ages and events.

The cake gets its rich chocolate flavour from Dutch-processed cocoa and the moisture from sour cream and butter. Instant coffee and peppermint extract give it that quintessential peppermint mocha flavour.

We topped ours off with what were hoping to be a white chocolate glaze. What we learned though, is that white chocolate does not behave the same way as dark chocolate does when you pour heavy cream over it. It still tastes nice, but definitely does not have the same thickness or consistency. Feel free to attempt our white chocolate version, or stick with the original dark chocolate. You can find a link to the original here.

This is sure to be a crowd pleaser, and a delicious addition to any holiday gathering!

Go bake.

Peppermint Mocha Bundt Cake

Ingredients:

1 cup (230 g) salted butter

1/3 cup (27 g) Dutch-processed cocoa

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 cup water

2 cups (250 g) all-purpose flour

1 3/4 cups (350 g) granulated sugar

4 tablespoons instant coffee

1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda

2 large eggs

1/2 cup sour cream

1 1/2 teaspoons peppermint extract

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the glaze:

225 g white chocolate chips (1 standard package)

1 1/2 tablespoons corn syrup

1/3 cup heavy cream

1 tablespoon granulated sugar

Sprinkles, crushed candy canes, etc. for decoratating

Directions:

  1. Start by preheating your oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a 10 or 12-cup Bundt pan with non-stick spray and set aside.
  2. In a small pot, combine the butter, cocoa powder, salt, and water and place over medium heat. Cook, stirring, until melted and combined. Remove from the heat and set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, instant coffee, and baking soda. Add half of the melted butter mixture and whisk until completely blended. The mixture will be thick. Add the remaining butter mixture and whisk until combined. Add the eggs and whisk until completely blended. Whisk in the sour cream, peppermint, and vanilla extract. Mix until smooth.
  4. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and bake until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean, about 40-45 minutes. Let the cake cool in the pan for 15 minutes before inverting onto a wire cooling racks and letting cool completely.
  5. While the cake is cooling, make the chocolate glaze. Place the chocolate chips and corn syrup in a medium bowl and set aside. Combine the heavy cream and sugar in a small pot and place over medium heat. Stir until the cream is hot and the sugar is dissolved. Pour the hot cream over the chocolate and whisk until smooth.
  6. Drizzle the glaze over the cake, allowing it to drip down the sides (If you think it’s a bit thin, let it rest for a couple of minutes in the fridge, then stir, and give it another go). Sprinkle with the decoration of your choice. Enjoy!

Inspired by this recipe.

Sparkling Gingerbread Pear Muffins

We are definitely feeling a desire to bake everything holiday-inspired these days! Give us gingerbread, sugar cookies, and all things egg nog! Have you started any holiday baking yet?

In particular, we’ve been drawn to things ginger and molasses inspired. Check here for a delicious example of how amazing this combination can be! When we came across a recipe for gingerbread muffins we knew that we had to give it a try, with our own spin on it of course!

While this recipe has ½ cup of molasses in it, these muffins do not come out tasting bitter or overly of molasses. We added some crystallized ginger to the recipe as well, because well, if you can add ginger twice it is always better than adding it once.

The pears add a lovely touch of sweetness and offset the gingerbread flavours perfectly. We used an Anjou pear but you could really use any variety. We also didn’t peel it! When you need muffins, you need them stat, and in those times there is no time for niceties like peeling. If you’re serving them to company you might consider it, but really, these are just as good with the peel on!

These muffins would make a fantastic addition to a holiday plate of breakfast goodies or as a sweet addition to a holiday brunch spread. They’re a fun twist on a traditional recipe, and one that we will absolutely be making again!

Go bake.

Sparkling Gingerbread Pear Muffins

Ingredients:

1/4 cup canola oil

3/4 cup (178 g) plain yogurt (ours was 3%)

1/2 cup whole milk (or 2%, non-fat, almond, etc.)

1/2 cup (114 g) coconut sugar (or sub light brown sugar)

1/2 cup fancy molasses

1 large egg

2 1/ 2 cups (313 g) all-purpose flour

1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda

1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger

1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

1 pear, finely diced

1/2 cup crystallized ginger, finely diced

Turbinado sugar for sprinkling on top

Directions:

  1. Start by preheating your oven to 375 degrees F. Lightly coat a muffin tin with non-stick spray.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the yogurt, milk, coconut sugar, molasses, and egg. Let rest 5 minutes for the coconut sugar to dissolve slightly. Add the oil, and stir to incorporate.
  3. In a separae medium mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, salt, and cloves.
  4. Pour the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients and mix until 3/4 incorporated. Add the chopped pear and crystallized ginger and mix until just combined.
  5. Divide the batter evenly between the prepared muffin cups, then sprinkle the tops with turbinado sugar. Bake the muffins for 16-18 minutes, until the tops are dry to the touch and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let cool in the pan for 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire wrack to cool completely. Enjoy!

Inspired by this recipe.

Double Chocolate Ginger Molasses Cookies

Do you know what’s better than the spicy goodness of ginger molasses cookies? Double chocolate ginger molasses cookies. We’re talking some major upping of your holiday cookie making game. Seriously.

Ginger molasses cookies are so indicative of the holiday season and winter festivities for us. There is something about baking with ginger, cinnamon, and cloves that puts us in the holiday spirit!

When you add chocolate to the mix we’re sold. It’s really a win-win situation if you can’t decide what to bake. Something buttery and spicy or rich and chocolatey? We took the decision making completely out of the equation, because honestly, who wants to compromise?

We came across this recipe through attending a Moroccan cooking class at a local cooking school here in Victoria. At the end of the class the chef, Heidi Fink, was handing out a variety of recipe cards and we could not resist scooping this one up!

These cookies get their spicy ginger flavour from the addition of two types of ginger- fresh and ground ginger. It doesn’t overwhelm the chocolate though, it just adds a nice heat! If you’ve ever made Mexican hot chocolate or had chocolate with chili in it you know that spicy heat and chocolate are a match made in heaven!

The molasses makes these feel like a holiday cookie, and rolling them in sugar before they’re baked gives them a sparkly finish that will look great on any holiday cookie plate. If you’re looking for a recipe that is a twist on an old favourite, this is the perfect cookie for you. Crispy on the out side, chewy and soft on the inside, and full of the rich, spicy flavours of the holidays, these are sure to be a new holiday favourite!

Go bake.

Double Chocolate Ginger Molasses Cookies

Ingredients:

1  1/4 cups plus 3 tablespoons (180 g) all-purpose flour

1 1/4 teaspoons ground ginger

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

1/4 teaspoon flaky salt

3 tablespoons (19 g) Dutch-processed cocoa

1/2 cup (115 g) salted butter

1 heaping teaspoon (10 g) finely minced ginger (we used the prepared stuff from a jar)

1/2 cup (106 g) packed dark brown sugar

1/2 cup (162 g) fancy molasses

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 1/2 teaspoons very hot water

3/4 cup to 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

granulated sugar for rolling

Directions:

  1. In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, spices, salt, and cocoa powder
  2. In a large bowl, beat together the butter, fresh ginger, and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Add the molasses and beat well to combine.
  3. In a small bowl, mix together the baking soda and the hot water.
  4. Stir half of the flour mixture into the sugar/butter mixture, then beat in the dissolved baking soda. Stir in the remaining dry ingredients. Gently mix in the chocolate chips, the cover your bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
  5. Preheat your oven to 325 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silpat.
  6. Roll the dough into 1-1.5 inch balls, then roll each ball in granulated sugar making sure to cover them completely. Place the dough balls 2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheets. Transfer to the oven and bake until the surfaces of the cookies crack, about 10-12 minutes. Let cool on 5 minutes on the tray then move to a wire rack to cool completely. Enjoy!

Inspired by a recipe created by this chef!

Apple Cranberry Crumb Muffins

We had our first snowfall here in Victoria last week!! Victorians tend to pride themselves on the mild weather that our island provides us with so this came as a complete shock! Thankfully, it’s mostly melted now!

These muffins are the perfect antidote to early snowfall and below freezing temperatures though. Soft and spicy and filled with juicy apples and tart cranberries, they are sure to warm you up!

Sometimes muffins with apples in them can become soggy and gummy but that’s definitely not the case here. There are the perfect amount of apple chunks in these muffins to prevent things from getting to soggy, with an excellent apple to cranberry ratio. We used fresh cranberries in ours, but you could also substitute frozen. Fresh cranberries tend to be in the markets more and more as we get closer to the holidays so they’re a nice change from the frozen variety if you can find them.

The crumb topping really makes these muffins special. We definitely like us some crumb topping here at Fancy Dough! Sweet and crunchy, it makes muffin tops that much more enticing to all who eat them.

You should really go make these muffins. Between the two of us we polished off the full dozen within two days. We at them for breakfast, lunch, and seriously consdiered eating them for dinner. They’re that good!

Go bake.

Apple Cranberry Crumb Muffins

Ingredients:

Crumb Topping-

1/3 cup (67 g) packed light brown sugar

1 tablespoon (15 g) granulated sugar

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 cup (60 g) salted butter, melted

2/3 cup (84 g) all-purpose flour

Muffins-

1/2 cup (115 g) salted butter, softened to room temperature

1/2 cup (100 g) packed light brown sugar

1/4 cup (50 g) granulated sugar

2 large eggs

1/2 cup (120 g) sour cream

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 3/4 cups (220 g) all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup half and half cream

1 apple, peeled and chopped (We used a medium-sized ambrosia)

1 cup fresh cranberries

Directions:

  1. For the crumb topping: In a medium bowl, combine both sugars, cinnamon, and melted butter. Add the flour and stir again to combine. Set aside.
  2. Preheat your oven to 425 degrees F. Spray a 12-cup muffin tin with nonstick spray.
  3. For the muffins: Beat the sugars and butter together until smooth and creamy (you can use a mixer to do this, but we had success using a large spoon and bit of elbow grease). Add the eggs, sour cream, and vanilla extract. Beat again until well incorporated. Add the cream and stir again to combine.
  4. Whisk the flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt together in a medium bowl. Pour the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients and mix until about 3/4 of the way combined. Add the apple and cranberries and mix gently just until everything is combined.
  5. Spoon the batter evenly into each cup, filling each nearly to the top. Sprinkle a handful of the crumb mixture onto the top of each, crumbling some of the bigger chunks up with your hands. (Don’t be afraid to be generous here- the muffins will rise and the crumb topping will disperse more than it looks on the unbaked batter).
  6. Bake for 5 minutes at 425 degrees F, then keeping the muffins in the oven, lower the temperature down to 350 degrees F, and bake for 15-17 minutes more, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  7. Let the muffins cool in their tin for 10 minutes before removing them to a wire cooling rack to cool completely. Enjoy!

Inspired by this recipe.

 

Old-Fashioned Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

We’re sharing a recipe today that brings us back to our childhood. To a time when cookies were simple and delicious and no one thought to put salted caramel, Oreos, or Halloween candy in them ?

There is, of course, a time for such treats, but there is something beautifully nostalgic about making a recipe that has been made for years, and reminiscing about old memories and times gone by. These oatmeal chocolate chip cookies definitely fit the bill, and are made with a recipe that has been passed down and much loved by everyone who’s tried them!

Full disclosure: This recipe uses vegetable shortening instead of butter. We know, we know, but remember what we were talking about with times gone by? Back in the day shortening was regularly used in baking and to be honest, it produces a lovely flavour and texture to these cookies. Feel free to substitute the shortening with butter if you absolutely must, but we would definitely advise sticking to the original ingredients!

The other ingredients that comprise these cookies are basic, everyday, kitchen staples. Oatmeal, brown sugar, a bit of flaked coconut, and a shockingly little amount of chocolate chips. Let us tell you, we were totally tempted to add more chocolate chips! Half a cup?! That’s craziness! But we found that the decrease in the amount of chocolate chips really let the oatmeal component of the cookies shine.

To us, these cookies are similar in sentiment to digestive or tea biscuits. They are not overly sweet, would be perfect with a cup of tea, and are the perfect combination of chewy and crunchy.

Baking from vintage recipes can be so fun! We highly suggest that you take a taste of the past and make these cookies!

Old-Fashioned Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

Ingredients:

1 cup ( 220 g) vegetable shortening

1 3/4 cup (219 g) all-purpose flour

2 cups (177 g) old-fashioned oats

1 cup (212 g) light brown sugar, packed

1/2 cup sweetened-flaked coconut

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 cup water

1/2 cup chocolate chips

Directions:

  1. Start by preheating your oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In a large bowl, beat together the shortening and brown sugar. In a small bowl, dissolve the baking soda into the water and then add to the mixture as well.
  3. Add the flour, old-fashioned oats, and coconut, and mix again until combined.
  4. Add the chocolate chips and stir until evenly incorporated. Drop the dough by tablespoonfuls onto a parchment-lined baking sheet then bake in the oven for 10-12 minutes.
  5. Let cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes then, transfer to a wire cooling rack to cool completely. Enjoy!

Bourbon Glazed Pumpkin Spiced Cinnamon Rolls

You guys… we baked you the most delicious fall dessert/snack/breakfast today. These cinnamon buns take things to a whole new level, and are definitely not for the faint of heart!

Cinnamon buns have been a long-standing tradition in our family and no Easter, Christmas, or birthday morning would be complete without them. They’re one of our favourite things to bake! Although we generally stick with more traditional recipes, we decided to branch out this time and make something a bit more seasonally relevant!

The dough for these cinnamon buns is enriched with butter, egg nog, and eggs and flavoured with pumpkin and the perfect blend of fall spices. This produces a dough that is so soft and tender that no one will be able to resist eating one!

We didn’t have any pre-made pumpkin pie spice on hand so instead we used this recipe from our friend Martha. All you need to do is combine the spices together in a bowl, and then measure out the amount required for the recipe. We halved Martha’s recipe, but if you have lots of pumpkin-spiced things to be made in your baking future, making the full recipe would be totally worthwhile!

These cinnamon buns are filled with more pumpkin, cinnamon, butter, and dark brown sugar to really play up the fall flavours. You could also substitute light brown sugar, but we like the extra molasses flavour that dark brown sugar brings things.

Finally, these gorgeous pieces of breakfast confectionary are topped with a bourbon glaze that will knock your socks off. To be honest, this is the first time that we’ve used bourbon in a glaze or baked goods, but it will definitely not be our last. The bourbon glaze makes these cinnamon buns special occasion worthy, and perfectly complements the spicy pumpkin goodness of the buns.

These cinnamon buns are ooey, gooey, soft, and everything that you could possibly want a cinnamon bun to be. The addition of pumpkin and spices makes them perfect for fall and the changing weather!

Go bake.

Bourbon Glazed Pumpkin Spiced Cinnamon Rolls

Ingredients:

3 cups (380 g) all-purpose flour

1/3 cup (66 g) granulated sugar

2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast

1/3 cup egg nog (or milk; whole or 2%)

1/4 cup (57 g) unsalted butter

1/4 cup water, lukewarm

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1/2 cup (116 g) pumpkin puree

1 large egg

2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Filling:

6 tablespoons (84 g) salted butter, melted

3 tablespoons pumpkin puree

1/2 cup (106 g) dark brown sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

pinch of salt

Bourbon glaze:

1/2 cup bourbon

2 cups icing sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions:

  1. In a large bowl, combine 2 cups (250 g) of the flour, granulated sugar, and the yeast.
  2. Place the egg nog and butter in a small pot and heat over low heat, just until the butter melts. Remove from the stovetop and let sit for 2 to 3 minutes, then stir in the water and vanilla extract.
  3. Add the milk and butter mixture to the dry ingredients and stir until well combine. Add the salt and the pumpkin puree and egg, beating well after each addition. Beat in the pumpkin pie spice and cinnamon.
  4. Add the remaining 1 cup (125 g) of flour, beating and mixing for another 2-3 minutes until the dough comes together again (we added an extra 2-3 Tbsp. of flour to achieve the right consistency). The dough should still be pretty sticky at this point. Transfer the dough into a bowl that has been sprayed with non-stick spray, cover with plastic wrap, and allow to rise for 1 hour.
  5. Make the filling. Whisk together the melted butter and pumpkin puree. After one hour, punch the dough down and turn onto a lightly floured surface. Roll it into a large rectangle, about 12-14 inches. Brush the dough with the melted butter pumpkin mixture, then sprinkle evenly with brown sugar and cinnamon.
  6. Roll up the dough starting at the shorter end, as tightly as possible, until you have a pinwheel of dough and filling. Cut the cylinder into 8 equal slices then place into a pie plate or other similar-sized baking dish that has been sprayed with non-stick spray. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place again for 45 minutes.
  7. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Place the pan in the oven and bake the cinnamon buns for 25-28 minutes until the tops are beginning to brown.
  8. Meanwhile, make the glaze. Place the bourbon in a saucepan and heat over medium-low heat. Cook until it reduces by about half, so you’re left with 1/4  cup of bourbon. Whisk together the bourbon, icing sugar, vanilla, and a pinch of salt until a smooth glaze forms.
  9. Once your buns are finished cooking, drizzle the glaze over them while they’re still warm. Enjoy!

Inspired by this recipe.

Spiced Honeycrisp Apple Cake

This is the motherload of cakes. Full of Honeycrisp apples, raisins, and pecans this cake screams autumn and warm, cozy, spicy goodness.

We have to admit we’re a bit obsessed with autumn fruit at the moment. So far, as of right now, we’ve made this and this with apples, and these lovelies with pears. Autumn produce is just so good right now that we don’t feel too bad bringing you one more recipe using it!

This cake brings together all sorts of fall flavours. Cinnamon, allspice, orange zest, apples, raisins, pecans. It’s the perfect cake to enjoy with a cup of coffee or tea on a chilly fall afternoon, but not so sweet that you couldn’t also enjoy it for breakfast (we promise it’s perfectly acceptable!).

It’s dense but not too dense, and has the perfect amount of caramely sweetness from the combination of white and brown sugar. You could definitely switch up the apples with something like a granny smith or gala as well.

You could also opt to omit the orange zest and allspice for an apple cake that is more traditionally flavoured. The raisins and pecans are also optional too, but they really do bring this cake to the next level from a flavour perspective.

If you’re in the market for a new everyday cake this is the perfect recipe to pull out this time of the year. It comes together with little fuss and is perfect when enjoyed between friends and family, but impressive enough to also be served to guests!

Go bake.

Spiced Honeycrisp Apple Cake

Ingredients:

3 cups (390 g) all-purpose flour

1 1/2 cups vegetable oil (We used canola oil)

1 cup (201 g) granulated sugar

1 cup (212 g) light brown sugar, packed

zest of a small orange (about 1 teaspoon)

3 large eggs

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon cinnamong

1/2 teasponn allspice

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon vanilla

3 cups, peeled, cored and diced Honey Crisp apples (about 2 medium)

1 cup (112 g) pecans, chopped

1 cup (130 g) raisins

Directions:

  1. Start by preheating your oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a bundt pan with non-stick spray.
  2. In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together your flour, salt, cinnamon, allspice, and baking soda.
  3. In a large bowl, beat together the oil, granulated sugar, brown sugar, and orange zest. Once combined, add the eggs and vanilla and beat until the mixture is creamy.
  4. Stir the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients and mix until about halfway combined. Add the raisins, pecans, and chopped apples and mix until fully combined.
  5. Transfer the mixture to the prepared pan. Bake for 65-75 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool in the pan for 10 minutes before removing the cake from the pan. Let cool completely (or as much as you can stand!), before slicing. Enjoy!

Inspired by this recipe.

Salted Caramel Coffee Chocolate Chip Bars

 

It feels like it has been raining here endlessly. When you live somewhere like the Pacific Northwest you come to rely heavily on the different distinctions between levels of precipitation. Is it just a shower? Is it sprinkling?  Is there light rain? You catch our drift.

Well, it has been full on raining. The forecast seems to alternate between either 100% chance of rain (it was correct) and a 90% chance of rain (this was also correct). We can’t complain too much though since we had a very dry summer!

Since it’s been so gloomy out we decided to bake something that was pure indulgence and fun. We stumbled across some salted caramel chips a little while ago (at Bulk Barn for those of you who live in Canada) and thought that now would be the perfect time to use. When combined with coffee, chocolate chips, and brown sugar they became absolutely divine.

It was tough to figure out a name for these bars. They are not really a blondie and they’re not really a cookie either, but somewhere in between. We stored ours in the fridge because it resulted in a chewy, almost fudge like consistency which we loved.

If you can’t find the salted caramel chips you could easily substitute them with an equal quantity of chocolate chips or butterscotch flavoured chips and come up with a bar as equally delicious. You could also throw in some nuts- pecans or walnuts would be fantastic! These bars are sure to create a little burst of sunshine in anyone’s rainy day!

Go bake.

Salted Caramel Coffee Chocolate Chip Bars

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups (188 g) all-purpose flour

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

12 tablespoons (171 g) salted butter, softened

1 1/2 cups (320 g) light brown sugar, packed

3/4 teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons instant coffee, dissolved in 2 Tbsp. warm water

1 large egg

1  1/2 tablespoons vanilla extract

1/2 cup (91 g) chocolate chips

1 cup (178 g) salted caramel chips

Directions:

  1. Start by preheating your oven to 350 degrees F.  Line a  9 x 13-inch baking dish with parchment paper or tinfoil and then spray with non-stick spray. Set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt.
  3. In a large bowl, cream together the butter and brown sugar. Add the egg, dissolved instant coffee, and vanilla and stir again until well combined.
  4. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix until just incorporated. Then, gently stir in the chocolate chips and salted caramel chips.
  5. Pour the batter into your prepared pan and smooth the top. Transfer the pan to your preheated oven and bake for 18-24 minutes, or until the blondies are golden brown and just beginning to form cracks.
  6. Place the pan on a wire cooling rack and let cool completely. When ready to serve, remove the parchment paper from the pan and cut into squares.  Enjoy!

*We found that storing these in he fridge provided the best texture, but they can also be stored at room temperature.

Inspired by this recipe.

Roasted Pear and Dark Chocolate Chunk Scones

Today we’re going to pair together an unlikely combination of ingredients. Pears and chocolate. We’re not sure why this pairing has not made it to the mainstream, but we’re hoping that you’ll give these scones a try and become a convert like us.

We unexpectedly came across some pears one evening when a neighbour stopped over with some overflow from her pear tree harvest. We didn’t complain.

Thankfully, a couple of years ago we stumbled across Deb’s recipe for Roasted Pear and Chocolate Chunk Scones and the recipe has been lingering in our minds ever since. We were as curious as we’re sure you are about what the combination of pear and dark chocolate tastes like. Spoiler alert: It’s a winning combination!

Roasting the pears allows for some of the moisture to be reduced and also intensifies the flavour of the pear. We found that using dark chocolate (at least 70%) cut down on some of the sweetness and made these perfectly palatable at breakfast time. Although, who are we kidding, we probably could have used milk chocolate and still eaten them for breakfast!

What did we change from Deb’s recipe?

  1. We upped the chocolate. Obviously. Chocolate tends to be sold in 100 g bars so rather that trying to painstakingly weigh out 85 g we just tossed the whole thing in.
  2. We got rid of the egg wash. To be honest, while it leaves a lovely shine on the scones that would be perfect if you were serving these to guests, it just wasn’t worth the hassle to us. You still end up with gorgeous, flavourful scones without it.
  3. We sprinkled with turbinado. We had to make up for the lack of egg wash somehow so we decided to sprinkle the tops of the scones with turbinado sugar (also known as Sugar in the Raw). It provides some sparkle and a bit of crunch to the final product.
  4. We used salted butter. This is standard in our kitchen. We know that baking purists will insist on using unsalted butter when baking to allow for maximum control of salt content, but we love the flavour when using salted butter and typically use it over unsalted butter whenever we bake.

Overall,  this is a delicious scone recipe to add to your fall baking repertoire and sure to leave whomever you share them with impressed by your amazing ability to combine flavours!

Go bake.

Roasted Pear and Dark Chocolate Chunk Scones

Indredients:

3 bosc pears (about 1 pound or 454 g- ours came closer to 500 g)

1 1/2 cups (190 g) all-purpose flour

1/4 cup (50 g) granulated sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

6 tablespoons (85 g) cold salted butter, cut into small cubes

1/4 cup heavy cream

1/3 cup (100g) dark chocolate, chopped (We used a 70% Lindt chocolate bar)

1 large egg

Tubinado sugar/Sugar in the Raw for sprinkling on top

Directions:

  1. Start by preheating your oven to 375 degrees F. Peel and core the pears and cut them into 1-inch chunks. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Arrange the pear chunks on the parchment in a single layer and roast until they feel dry to the touch and look a little browned underneath, about 20-22 minutes. Transfer the pear chunks to a plate and place in the fridge or the freezer to cool down until they’re lukewarm.
  2. Meanwhile, whisk the flour, baking powder, granulated sugar, and salt toghether in a large bowl. Add the cold butter and using a pastry cutter or two knives break up the butter into pea sized pieces.
  3. Add the pears, heavy cream, and egg and mix until just combined. Add the chococlate chunks and mix until evenly distributed.
  4. On a well floured counter, pat the dough out into a 6-inch round. Cut into 6 generous wedges and transfer to a baking sheet lined with parchment, placing them at least 2-inches apart.  Sprinkle each scone with a genours amount of turbinado sugar.
  5. Transfer the scones to the oven and bake until firm and golden, about 30 minutes. Transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely. Enjoy!

Inspired by this recipe.

Sweet and Spicy Chai Tea

Fall is definitely in the air. The mornings and evenings are crisper, the leaves are starting to turn colour and fall, and the day time high is having trouble reaching double digits (Celsius!).That means it is the perfect time for chai. We’ve made chai flavoured baked goods in the past, but now we’re taking it back to the original today!

Fun fact: Did you know that chai actually means tea? So when you say chai tea you’re actually saying “tea tea”? Anyways, we digress. Masala chai originated in India and is what most North Americans would consider to be chai with a mixture of black tea, spices and milk.

It’s actually surprisingly easy to make with fairly standard ingredients. Ginger, spices, milk, and black tea are the main components that go into it. We used an English Breakfast for ours but really any black tea would work. We also used cow’s milk but you could definitely substitute soy, almond, coconut, etc.

In addition to the traditional spices used (cinnamon, ginger, and cardamom), we also opted to add black peppercorns and fennel seeds for an added kick. You can leave them out and still end up with a delicious tea though or, if you’re feeling adventurous, you could experiment with adding spices like nutmeg, star anise, and whole cloves.

How ever you decided to make this tea, it’s sure to be a lovely addition to the chilly days of fall! Perfect when snuggled up in a warm blanket reading a book or after a fun day on the slopes!

Go make tea.

Sweet and Spicy Chai Tea

Ingredients:

1 1/2- inch (about 28 g) piece fresh ginger, peeled and thinly sliced

1 3-inch cinnamon stick, lightly crushed with the flat side of a knife

6 black tea bags (we used Tazo English Breakfast)

14 green cardamom pods, lightly crushed

1/4 teaspoon fennel seeds

6 black peppercorns

2 3/4 cups milk (we used 2%)

1/4 cup agave syrup (honey or maple syrup could also be substituted)

Directions:

  1. Start by combining the ginger, cinnamon, and 3 1/2 cups water in a large pot. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, lower heat and simmer rapidly, stirring occasionally, until the liquid is reduced by a third and is very fragrant; about 20 minutes.
  2. Remove the pot from the heat and stir in the tea bags, cardamom, fennel seeds, and peppercorns and let steep for 2 minutes.
  3. Return the pot to medium-high heat and stir in milk and agave syrup. Cook, stirring occasionally and keeping a close watch, until the mixture begins to foam up and boil; about 5-8 minutes.
  4. Immediately remove from heat and let sit 5 minutes. Strain the chai through a fine-mesh sieve into a teapot or pitcher and serve. Enjoy!

Inspired by this recipe.