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Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread

Since Fall is officially here, (although its still 95 degrees in Las Vegas) I decided it was time to make something pumpkin flavored.  I couldn’t think of anything better to make than pumpkin bread.  My friend Kelly had a killer pumpkin bread recipe and I pretty much begged her for it before she moved to Miami.  It was delicious, spicy, pumpkiny, and super moist.  With a few alterations of my own (umm chocolate chips please?), here is the recipe!

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread (makes about 2 loaves)

3 cups AP Flour

1/2 cup cake flour (You can do all AP flour in the recipe if you don’t have cake flour)

3 cups granulated sugar

1 1/2 tsp sea salt

2 tsp baking soda

1 tablespoon baking spice or pumpkin pie spice

1 can pumpkin

1/4 cup apple sauce

2/3 cup skim milk or water

4 eggs

2 tsp vanilla

1 cup vegetable oil

1 bag semisweet chocolate chips

*Optional: 2 tablespoons finely diced crystallized ginger*

Mix all dry ingredients together thoroughly in a bowl.  If using ginger, add with dry ingredients.  In bowl, mix together pumpkin, milk, eggs, vanilla, and oil.  Once the liquids are thoroughly mixed together, and dry ingredients until incorporated.  Then add chocolate chips to mixture.

Once everything is combine, divide into two greased loaf pans, both about 3/4 the way full.  If you have extra batter, scoop into muffin pans and make muffins, I had about enough leftover to make 6.  Bake at 350 for 60-75 minutes, inserting a knife or skewer in loaf to make sure it is cooked through.

Let bread cool for about 20 minutes before popping out and devouring!  Enjoy🙂

My Most Requested Chocolate Chip Cookies

After deciding to do a blog, I knew right away that my first post would be my chocolate chip cookies.  I have had requests for these cookies since high school and it has definitely been a favorite!  It is also the recipe that I turn to when I want something simple and delicious.  After hearing plenty of times,”You can make money from these,” they have become the cookies that started my career, long before I even went to culinary school.
So whether you are going to a party, need a last minute gift, trying to get a boyfriend, trying to get OVER a boyfriend, or just feel like stuffing your face with the perfectly salty, sweet, chewy and chocolatey treat, this is my favorite go to recipe!

Chocolate Chip Cookies

2 sticks butter, room temp.
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar

2 eggs, preferably room temp (I usually have extra large on hand so I use those, but anything large and up should do)
2 teaspoons vanilla (more or less depending how much you like the flavor, but stick with at least 1!)

2 cups AP flour (all purpose, duh.)
1/2 cup bread flour (if you like a crispy exterior and chewy interior, this is a must.  if you want to get a more cakey cookie, use a 1/2 cup cake flour instead)
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 bag or 2 cups chocolate chips (I prefer semi or bittersweet)

First, preset your oven to 375, or 350 if it’s a convection oven.  The oven must be at the right temperature, because nothing is worse than having to wait even longer to eat your cookies! So did we turn the oven on?  Is it heating up?  Ok, check.  Moving on…

Now, get all your ingredients portioned out, or as we fancy food people call it, “mise en place,” which literally means, put in place.  Its important in baking to have all your ingredients mise en place before starting because you usually will not have time to get your stuff together while things get cookin’.  I like to put my ingredients together in the order they go in, so sugars and butters together, liquids go together, and then dry ingredients in a bowl together like so…

Start by creaming together your butter and sugars in the mixer with the paddle attachment on a low speed.  Make sure the speed is not too high, we don’t want to whip the butter!

Once butter and sugar is evenly creamed and incorporated and it looks like a delicious bowl of sugary buttery goodness, mmmmm butter.  Oh yes, then add eggs and vanilla one by one, remembering to scrape down the sides of the bowl.

Once eggs and vanilla are incorporated, slowly add dry ingredients.  Remember to put your mixer on low speed unless you enjoy having a face and kitchen covered in flour.  (I’ve learned this lesson many times…)

**Do not overmix!  Overmixing will develop gluten in the flour, and make a tough cookie.  I may be a tough cookie, but I do not enjoy eating them.**

Once flour is incorporated, add chocolate chips.

Dough will end up looking like this…

Be careful not to eat dough.  Be patient, the end result is soooo worth it.

Now, line baking sheets with parchment paper and scoop dough into equal amounts onto the baking sheet.  I prefer to use a scoop, and a rather big scoop.

Once your dough is portioned out, place in the oven and bake.  Baking time should be approximately 8 to 11 minutes, depending on the size of the cookies and your oven.  Make sure to rotate half way through so cookies bake evenly.

While waiting, I prefer to clean the kitchen and my mess or sit and stare into the oven while drooling.  Yes, I am very, very impatient!!!

Almost done!

When cookies are finally baked, they should have a golden exterior with slightly darker edges.  Let them cool for about 10 minutes.  Then stuff one into your face, err I mean, taste test one…

Enjoy with a glass of milk, or a bottle of wine.  I guess it depends on why you made them in the first place…

Hello world!

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