Chocolate-Coconut and Toffee Bars

Need a great dessert or sweet snack to feed a crowd? A friend of mine passed me a version of a recipe which I tweaked to create these Chocolate-Coconut Toffee Bars. These remind me of  a cross between S’mores and Hello Dolly bars, but these are a little less fattening.  I used low-fat graham crackers as the base with a toffee layer topped with coconut, pecans and dark chocolate. They are so easy to make, and the kids loved them (especially for a study break snack).

Mini Valentines Treats: Cookie Dough Truffles

I read a lot of food blogs, and I mean a lot! Since I am a consultant for a few food magazines and PR firms, I get paid to keep my eye on talented bloggers to possibly feature, new ideas in recipes as well as food trends. Many times, I come across a blog which I subscribe to and look forward to every day. In December, I was so excited when Carrots and Chocolate featured several variations of truffle recipes for Christmas. The Cookie Dough Truffles caught my eye, and the next thing I knew I was in the kitchen tinkering with her recipe. Recently, I served my variation at a party, and my friend, Andy, said, “I didn’t think cookie dough could get any better!” I thought that was testimony enough. These are really fun to serve on Valentine’s Day, and I can’t wait to make them later this week in Nashville working with the talented crew from Newschannel 5 on “Talk of the Town”.

Homemade Food Gifts-Chocolate Butterscotch Bar Cookie Mix

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Homemade treats and gifts are so comforting during the holidays, and who wouldn’t love a gift that looks like this? I made a few of these, and everyone went nuts over them. I couldn’t make them fast enough. Not only is this the easiest gift in the world to make, but the finished product is beyond awesome (and when I say that, it’s good). You can find one-quart jars almost anywhere, but if you’re having trouble, check Walmart or your local grocery store. These recipes can be made ahead, and don’t forget to make a few extra batches to keep on hand for family munching, drop-in guests, or any time of the year.

 

Chocolate Butterscotch Bars

Prep: 5 minutes

YIeld: 3 dozen

Ingredients

11/2 cups graham cracker crumbs

1 cup (6 ounces) semisweet chocolate morsels

2 cups (12 ounces) butterscotch morsles

1 cup chopped pecans or walnuts

Preparation

1. Layer all ingredients in a 1-quart jar in order given; tightly seal. Makes 1 gift jar.

Chocolate Butterscotch Bar Cookies: Combine Chocolate Butterscotch Bar Mix and 1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk. Press into a greased aluminum foil-lined 9-inch square pan. Bake at 350F for 30 to 35 minutes. Cool completely and cut into squares.

Christmas Cookie Winner! Double Chocolate Chip Peppermint Cookies

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This recipe is so easy, and so fun to make. I saw a similar recipe in the Better Homes and Gardens Magazine, and my daughter, Leigh, begged me to make some. She made the orignal recipe all by herself, and we were all impressed. Since, as a Recipe Developer, I get paid to create recipes for a living, I decided I would try to rival her with this variation. Try them for yourself and let me know what you think. 

 

Super-Duper Chocolate Peppermint Kisses

Prep: 20 minutes

Bake: 8 minutes

Yield: 20 cookies

Ingredients

1 (161/2-ounce) package chocolate chip cookie dough

1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

3/4 cup chocolate-flavored sprinkles

20 peppermint chocolate kisses, unwrapped (chocolate kisses may be substituted)

Preparation

1. Preheat oven to 375F. Lightly grease a cookie sheet; set aside. In a large resealable plastic bag, combine cookie dough and cocoa powder. Seal bag; knead with your hands until dough is well mixed. Remove dough from bag.

2. Place chocolate sprinkles in a shallow dish or small bowl. Place milk in a shallow dish or small bowl. Shape dough into 1-inch balls, Dip balls in milk to moisten, then roll balls in chcolate sprinkles to coat. Place balls 2-inches apart on prepared cookie sheet.

3. Bake in a preheated oven about 8 minutes or until edges are firm. Immediately press a peppermint kiss into the center of each cookie. Transfer cookies to a wire rack; let cool. 

To store: Place cookies between sheets of waxed paper in an airtight container; cover. Store at room temperature for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months.