There are few things in life that make me as happy as a delicious bar cookie. Shortbread on the bottom. Some sort of caramel layer. Nuts or coconut or seeds. And chocolate. Dipped in chocolate, drizzled in chocolate, painted with chocolate. Any of these options are okay.
My usual go-to bar for this type of craving is Alice Medrich’s Toffee Bar. Seriously delicious. Seriously addictive. Seriously easy to make. Like really really easy to make.
But my friends’ daughters have all been talking about Girl Scout cookie orders and I was looking through my Baked books for some ideas and then I found it: Samoa-inspired bar with coconut.
When you need to practice a presentation and are asking your colleagues to give up an hour of their time to listen to you and give feedback, it seems right to offer some baked goods.
Problem was, I planned my baked goods for an afternoon meeting and actually the meeting was scheduled for the morning. So I had to think of a ‘healthy’ breakfast treat I could make. While one of my favorites is Alice Medrich’s Breakfast Biscotti, I changed my tune and went with this oatmeal cake instead. Oatmeal – basically breakfast in disguise! Cream cheese frosting – just like eating a bagel!
This cake may not be the most nutritious breakfast you could choose, but it was glowingly reviewed and declared the favorite by many.
I have what some may call an addiction to peanut butter. I import incredible quantities of Trader Joe’s peanut butter (only one ingredient: peanuts!) every time I return from the US. And I put in requests from everyone who visits me.
I think the only thing I like better than peanut butter is peanut butter with chocolate. My favorite indulgence as a child was peanut-butter & nutella sandwiches. Who am I kidding – it’s still my favorite indulgence! I just indulge slightly less frequently.
So when I got the new Baked cookbook and there’s a whole section on baking with peanuts and peanut butter, I had to make their chocolate peanut butter cake.
It is amazing.
I had a huge dilemma recently. I was hosting a birthday party for myself and wanted to bake all of my favorite things. But that’s just too many things to bake… because people wouldn’t be able to eat that much! So after much consulting, considering, and mouth-watering cookbook perusing, I decided on just four cakes. And this one, of course, made the cut.
I’d made this one a year ago. It was my first cake from the Baked cookbook and it took me literally all day to make. And I made it for a dinner at a friend’s house, so it ended up being a lot of cake for just 4 people. I mean – a lot of cake. This time, it took me much less time to make, but it’s still a time investment. Which is well worth it.
On the search for an easy, go-to chocolate cake – and because we were late in accepting a dinner invitation so I needed to bake something I had the ingredients for – I thought I’d try this one from Vintage Cakes. So far I’ve been very impressed with her other recipes and this one looks very pretty (prettier in her picture than ours, but ours survived 50 minutes of transportation which included a bus, a transfer to the tram, and a 10 minute walk).