Chocolate Peanut Butter Pretzel Cookie Bars

Cover

When I stumbled upon this recipe on King Arthur’s website I knew I had to make it.  (As a side note, I love using King Arthur flour in my baking, and their site has some great recipes!)  The salty-sweet combo of the pretzels and chocolate are enough to win me over, but then add in peanut butter?  I’m in heaven.  And to top it all off, it is so easy!  Plus you can make it on a whim because you don’t need to have room temperature ingredients.  I knew this would be the perfect recipe to make for my friend’s St. Patrick’s day party.

… 

Read More »

Country Bread

Country Bread

I am not an expert on bread baking in the slightest.  I have only been doing it for a year, so I am trying to learn as much as I can and try as many recipes as I can.  I love cookbooks and bought a bunch of bread baking ones, but I found myself scouring the cookbooks for recipes that do not use a starter.  Who has time for a starter?  Feeding it and waiting around?  Plus, they sound kind of scary – Biga?  Poolish?  What do those words even mean?

Then this past weekend I decided it was time to get over my fear and make bread with a starter.  And boy am I glad I did.  It brings the bread to a whole new level.  The flavor is more complex and the texture is just perfect.  I guess there is a reason that over half the recipes in my cookbooks use a starter.

There are various types of starters, but I used a very basic method from Joanne Chang’s Flour cookbook.  The only hard part about using a starter is timing.  But on a cold winter weekend, I have nothing but time for baking!  … 

Read More »

Chocolate Peanut Butter Chip Cookies

choco

This blog needs a cookie post.  In fact the first post probably should have been a cookie post.  Now granted I am just getting started, so there are so many things that I want to post about.  But if you have been reading all of my posts up until now, you probably don’t realize quite how obsessed I am with dessert!  Specifically with cookies, although I don’t really discriminate.  My favorite cookie recipes usually include chocolate or peanut butter.  Or better yet, both.  This recipe for chocolate peanut butter chip cookies is one of my absolute favorites.  It is my go-to when I am bringing cookies to a party because everyone loves them (and because I know I won’t mess up the recipe!)  I also like that you don’t need a mixer for it – I love my KitchenAid, but sometimes I just don’t feel like dealing with it.  Another plus is that you don’t need to leave the butter out at room temperature.  Sometimes, I just can’t wait that long to make cookie dough.  It is a rich, moist cookie with the most amazing chocolate flavor, studded with perfect peanut butter chips.  And if for some crazy reason you don’t like peanut butter chips (if you are allergic that is one thing, but if you just don’t like peanut butter I’m not sure we can be friends…), you can sub in any kind of chip you want!  Green mint chips are fun around Christmas time…. 

Read More »

No-Knead Bread

This No-Knead Bread recipe is one of my absolute favorite recipes ever. The bread is crusty on the outside and light and fluffy on the inside, and it is so easy to make!

No-Knead Bread | ChezCateyLou.com
I have always loved to bake.  And to eat.  There are numerous pictures of me as a child with cake batter or cookie dough all over my face, and I haven’t stopped since then.  Cookies are my specialty, although I have dabbled in it all.  However the one thing I had not tried until last January was bread. Good ‘ol yeast bread.  Just the thought of working with yeast scared me, and there were all of these scary words associated with baking bread, like proofing and rising and kneading.  So I just never attempted it, until a long weekend visiting my aunt when she taught me that I didn’t need to be afraid of bread.  That is was surprisingly easy.  And I have been unstoppable ever since.  I am obsessed with baking bread!  The smell of fresh bread baking is intoxicating, and I feel so satisfied when it comes out of the oven.  However if the thought of the whole process still scares you, I have the perfect recipe.  No-knead bread, inspired by Jim Lahey
and America’s Test Kitchen.  

It makes the perfect fluffy white bread with a thick crackly crust, and you don’t even have to knead the dough!  Ok, you do have to touch it, but only a few times, I promise!  All you need is time, because this dough needs to sit for 12-18 hours, and then another 2 hours before it bakes.  I really think this no-knead bread recipe will change your (baking) life!  
… 

Read More »