Chocolate Chip Zucchini Bread

What’s your go-to blog for recipes?  We all have them, because these days… it’s so much easier to Google than to search through an array of cookbooks.

Me and half of America have Smitten Kitchen as our go-to blog for recipes.  I haven’t made too many things, because most of the time I like inventing things but I’ve made a few and every one is great.

This past week I was dogsitting…

and had a massive zucchini from the garden to use.  First I made an zucchini mozzarella bake, which I will tell you about soon, but there I still had about 1/3 of the zucchini left.  I’m telling you this thing was the size of a small animal (probably roughly the size of the two pugs above). I wish I had taken a picture of it.

So with 1/3 of an enormous zucchini sitting on the counter as two pugs stared at me, naturally, I turned to Smitten Kitchen for direction.  Now, I have to tell you… I’m a terrible person.  I never actually read her blog posts.  I only ever look at the pictures and recipes.   Does anyone else do that?

We all have different motivations for following blogs, right? For me, Smitten Kitchen is all about pictures and recipes.

So back to Zucchini.  I made zucchini bread, because I was feeling traditional.

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I usually never do this, but I actually followed this recipe pretty much to the T (but omited the nuts and added chocolate chips).  I chose to add chocolate chips because for some reason chocolate and zucchini sounds like a natural combination.

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Chocolate Chip Zucchini Bread

from Smitten Kitchen

3 eggs
1 cup vegetable oil
1 3/4 cups sugar
2 cups grated zucchini*
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3 cups all-purpose flour
3 teaspoons cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup chocolate chips

*Note: I didn’t measure the zucchini so I actually think I added more like 3 cups

Line two loaf pans with parchment paper.  Pre-heat oven to 350F.

In a bowl, beat together eggs, oil and sugar.  Once combined, add zucchini and vanilla extract.  Stir to combine.  Add dry ingredients and chocolate chips.  Stir until just combined.  Pour batter into two loaf pans.

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Bake about an hour (mine took about an hour and 10 minutes, remember all ovens are different).

Allow to cool completely.  Then remove from pan (parchment paper makes it super easy to pull out of the pan).  Slice and serve.zucchinibread3

I took these two loaves to work and they were gone in a day.  That’s probably because I ate half of it on my own.  It was pretty delicious. The loaves are sort of dense, but super moist, which is always appreciated.

Normally I hate chocolate chips in quick breads, but this was fantastic.  If you ever put chocolate chips in my banana bread or pancakes, we won’t be friends anymore, but in zucchini bread… bring it on!

So there you have it.  Sometimes you need a go-to blog for a recipe.

What’s your go-to blog for recipes?  Are there any blogs you read solely for pictures and recipes?

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Peanut Butter Bacon Chocolate Chip Cookies

When a friend comes to visit from across the country, they deserve a treat.  When a friend says she wants a dessert with bacon, you oblige and make these:

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My friend Liz loves bacon more than anyone I know.  We have that bond of former roommates so I know the lady loves meat  (no pun intended, get your mind out of the gutter).

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Lucky for her, bacon in dessert is totally having a moment, or is that just me?  If you haven’t had bacon in a dessert yet, you need to try it asap.  Start with these cookies…

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Peanut Butter Bacon Chocolate Chip Cookies

3 slices of bacon, fat reserved
1/4 cup softened butter
*
1/2 cup peanut butter
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 egg
1 cup all purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt (omit if using salted PB)
1 cup chocolate chips

In a pan, fry bacon over medium heat until very crispy.  Reserve fat and allow to cool completely.  Chop bacon and set aside.

Pre-heat oven to 350F.

Beat together butter, peanut butter and bacon fat (*note if you don’t want to use bacon fat, you can just use 1/2 cup of butter and omit the bacon fat).  Add sugar and beat for an additional minute or two.  Add egg and beat for an additional minute.  Add flour and baking soda (and salt if using) and beat until almost combined.  Lastly, fold in chopped bacon and chocolate chips.

Form dough into walnut-sized balls, place on a parchment paper lined baking sheet and bake for 10-13 minutes or until golden on the edges.  Allow to cool completely and serve!  Makes about 2 dozen cookies (or maybe more… I wouldn’t know because I ate a ton of the cookie dough).

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If your friend loves bacon but isn’t a fan of peanut butter… not to worry, I have a solution for you:

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Bacon Banana Chocolate Chip Cookies

Not into cookies (we won’t talk about how blasphemous that is…) but feeling the need to put bacon in a dessert?  How about this Chocolate Pudding with Peanut Butter Mousse and Maple Candied Bacon?

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Equally delicious and bacon-y.

How do you feel about bacon in desserts? Do you love it? Hate it? Is it over-rated? Never tried it?  Tell me!

Pies before Paleo

This weekend consisted of lots of eating.  I’m definitely ready to start the paleo challenge tomorrow.  I feel like my body needs a cleanse.

Friday night, as I had mentioned, I went to Newport Landing for OC Restaurant Week.

I had Manhattan Clam Chowder, Potato Wrapped Salmon, and Molten Chocolate Cake.  Tasty!

Then Saturday night, there was another birthday dinner at an Argentine restaurant in San Diego called Puerto La Boca.  Jesse and I headed down to San Diego a bit early.  We sat at the bar and had a drink ($3 wine!) while we waited for everyone to arrive.

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By the time dinner happened (about 9pm?), we were starving.  Empanadas, Bread with Chimichurri, Meat, Salad, French Fries.  All tasty (and garlic-y like woah).

Then today, a co-worker is having an engagement party.  I offered to bring pies.

He requested Avocado Pie (because he loved it last time)

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A Banana Cream Pie using this recipe from Epicurious.

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And Chocolate Mousse  (I’m totally NOT happy with how this one looks.  Womp.  But hopefully it will taste awesome!)

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This is by no means a normal weekend, so I definitely feel ready to eat normal food.

How about you?  Ready for the Paleo Challenge?

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I’m totally pumped!  I keep talking about it.  I think my boyfriend is already annoyed.

Pretty soon I’ll turn into one of those people…


 

“Is this Paleo?”

Banana Bacon Chocolate Chip Cookies

2 great things inspired this blog post.  They both start with a B.   The first is Bacon.

That word inspires so many people to eat copious amounts of things.  I feel like Bacon is particularly fitting today, as it’s Super Bowl Sunday.  I would be a big fat liar if I told you I wasn’t excited for today, but I’ll be honest.  I’m more excited for the food than for the game, and only marginally more excited for Beyonce (that’s the second B…).

She’s my lady, and I love her.  Probably as much as most people like bacon.

So my contribution to Super Bowl Sunday (aka this…

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are these cookies

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Banana Bacon Chocolate Chip Cookies

1/2 cup butter
6 slices of bacon, cooked and fat reserved*
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
2 eggs
1 tbsp vanilla extract
2 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 cup chocolate chips
 2 cup banana chips, roughly chopped

Cook bacon in a pan over medium heat until crispy.  Place on to a paper towel and allow to cool.  Once cooled, chop and set aside.  Reserve 1/4 cup of bacon fat.

Cream together butter, 1/4 cup bacon fat, and sugars.  Add each egg, beating about 1 minute after each.  Add flour and baking soda, beat until almost combined.   Fold in bacon, banana chips and chocolate chips.  Chill dough in the freezer while you preheat the oven to 350F.

Form dough into walnut sized balls, and place on parchment paper-lined baking pan.  Bake 12-15 minutes or until golden brown (this varies on the size of your cookies and your oven).  Allow to cool completely and serve.  Makes about 4 dozen cookies.

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*Note: if you don’t want to use bacon fat, omit bacon fat and use 3/4 cup of butter instead of 1/2 cup.

So make sure you get on this quick.  You’ve got a few hours until Beyonce (and the Super Bowl).  Run and get some bacon then make these cookies!

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Chocolate Crinkle Cookies

These should probably be called Chocolate Crack Cookies.

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They’re that good. If I were Santa Claus, I would totally want these waiting for me with a huge glass of milk. I don’t even like milk, but I’d take it with these cookies.

The first time I made these was in grad school in 2009 with my friend Rhoda. We made a bunch of different cookies to give to people for the holidays. This was one of them and I remember it being amazing.

So do Santa, your neighbor, your boyfriend, your mom, whoever a favor and make them these cookies.

Chocolate Crinkle Cookies

adapted from Blue Ribbon Cookies

2 ounces unsweetened chocolate
1/4 cup canola oil
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 cup flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
About 1/2 cup powdered sugar

Melt chocolate in the microwave (30 seconds at a time, stirring in between blast session until completely melted). Drizzle oil into chocolate while stirring. Once combined, add sugar and mix in. Beat in 2 eggs. Stir in flour, baking powder and salt until just combined. Don’t over-mix. Chill dough in the freezer for about an hour or in the fridge for a few hours.

Once your dough has chilled, pre-heat oven to 350F. Line your baking sheet with parchment paper and place powdered sugar in a bowl.

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Form dough into walnut sized balls (I made mine a little bigger that than because I’m terrible at calculating size). Roll in powdered sugar and place on parchment paper lined baking sheet. This should make about 24-30 cookies (the recipe says 40, but obviously I have a heavy hand in my cookie forming…)choc crinkle cookies2

Bake 10 minutes. They might look undercooked but that’s okay. Remember my rule about undercooked chocolate things… they’re delicious. Trust me.

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Allow to cool complete and serve with a glass of milk… and a side of carrots and celery for the reindeer… or to balance out the sugar, whatever you want to believe.