A Baking Frenzy

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Last Thursday, I wrote a blog on how homemade baked treats was a savvy alternative gift for Christmas. I teased you with a list of goodies but did not give you the recipes that made the final cut for this year. Today, I share with you three recipes that are sure to please anyone with a serious sweet tooth. These recipes were found on American websites and converted to UK measurements just for you. Chocolate Chip and Toffee Shortbread Cookies (Recipe from The Kitchn)

Ingredients:

225g (1 cup) unsalted butter, softened
60g (1/2 cup) icing sugar
1tsp. vanilla extract
220g (2 cups) self-raising flour
175g (1 cup) mini milk/plain chocolate chips (less than 70% cocoa solids)
127 g (3/4 cup) mini toffee bits

Directions: Preheat oven to 180 C (gas mark 4). Cream together butter and icing sugar. Stir in vanilla. Mix in flour a little at a time until combined. Mix in chocolate chips and toffee. Shape dough into one-inch balls and place on pre-lined baking tray, two inches apart. Bake 10-15 minutes until browned and firm.

Store in airtight container at room temperature. Makes approximately four dozen cookies.

Triple Chocolate Brownies (Recipe adapted from Martha Stewart)

Ingredients:

115 g (1/2 cup) unsalted butter
175 g (1 cup) milk/plain chocolate chips (less than 70% cocoa solids)
340 g (1 1/2 cup) sugar
3 eggs
21 g (1/4 cup) unsweetened cocoa powder
½ tsp. salt
90 g (1/2 cup plus 2 tbsp.) flour, sifted
170 g (1 cup) toffee bits
175 g (1 cup) milk chocolate chips

Directions: Preheat oven to 180 C (gas mark 4). Line pan with baking paper for easy cleanup. Melt semisweet chocolate and butter. Stir until smooth. Remove from heat. Whisk in sugar. Whisk in eggs. Whisk in cocoa powder and salt. Fold in flour. Stir in milk chocolate and toffee bits. Pour into pan. Pound pan on counter to release air bubbles. Bake 35-40 minutes if using an 8 x 8 pan. Bake 30-35 minutes if using a 13 x 9 x 2 pan or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with moist crumbs.
Store in airtight container at room temperature up to three days. Makes approximately nine 2 ½ inch squares when using 8 x 8 pan.

Chocolate Bourbon Truffles (from Kraft Foods)

Ingredients:

224 g (8 oz.) Philadelphia Cream Cheese (Soft Cheese)
510 g (1 lb. 2 oz.) finely crushed chocolate bourbons
448 g (16 oz.) milk/plain chocolate chips or squares (less than 70% cocoa solids)

Directions: Mix cream cheese and biscuit crumbs until well combined. Shape into 48 one-inch balls. Refrigerate 30 minutes. Melt chocolate and cover balls completely by rolling them with two forks in bowl with melted chocolate. Place on covered baking sheet and refrigerate until firm.
Store in airtight container in refrigerator. Makes 48 truffles.

Happy baking!

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