Monday, August 16, 2010

Muffin Act 2: Back in the Oven

My sister's family came to visit me in Boston, so it was the perfect occasion to make some muffins. My sister is an amazing cook, and all of her food is delicious and creative. Her family is used to her cooking, so I needed to whip up something that could meet those standards! These fluffy, super-chocolatey muffins were a big hit.

Autumn in Summer Cocoa Pumpkin Muffins


  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup Canola oil
  • 2 eggs (or 1/3 cup egg whites)
  • 3/4 cup canned pumpkin
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose whole wheat flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 1/4 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 2/3 cup baking cocoa

  • Directions:

    Step 1: Preheat oven to 400°F.

    Step 2: In a large bowl, mix sugar, oil, eggs, pumpkin, and water.

    Step 3: In a different bowl, mix flour, baking powder, baking soda, pumpkin pie spice, and MOST IMPORTANTLY, your cocoa.

    Step 4: Add dry mixture to wet mixture. Stir until the concoction is smooth. Stir in chocolate chips.

    Step 5: Lick spoon.

    Step 6: Think about chocolate for a few minutes.

    Step 7: Mmm, chocolate.

    Step 8: Snap out of it! Put your muffins in a lined muffin tin, and bake for 23-25 minutes or until springy and chocolatey and delicious.

    Makes 12 muffins.

    Check out my handsome nephew slash muffin model:

    Sunday, April 4, 2010

    Chag Sameach!

    I don't know about you guys, but I am really tired of matzoh. Moreover, I am really tired of those styrofoam diskettes they try to pass for cookies on this never-ending holiday. Things are different this year, though. The other day when I was going for a walk, I passed a burning bush and it spoke to me. "Sonja," it bellowed, "you must bring delicious pareve chocolate brownies to the good people of New England, more specifically those who are gong to be at seder with you!" Then my iPod turned into a snake and there were frogs EVERYWHERE.

    Anyway I found the original recipe here. Thanks to epicurious for being so awesome all the time.

    Chocolate Relief Passover Brownies

    • 2 cups brown sugar
    • 1 cup ( 2 sticks) unsalted butter melted and cooled
    • 1 cup chopped strawberries
    • 1 cup chocolate chips
    • 3 eggs
    • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 1 cup matzoh cake meal
    Step 1: Preheat the oven to 350°F.

    Step 2: Lightly grease a 7 by 10-inch rectangular baking pan, a 9-inch square pan, or anything else you feel would be a good venue for your brownies.
    Step 3: Mix the salt, cocoa powder, and matzoh cake meal together.

    Step 4: Add the strawberries, making sure they are completely coated in the dry mixture.

    Step 5: In a separate bowl, mix together the butter, eggs, and sugar.

    Step 6: Add the wet mix to the dry mix. Stir in the chocolate chips.

    Step 7: Taste the batter. Sam says the batter is more delicious than the actual brownies, and he might be right.

    Step 8: Bake for 25 minutes. Let cool in pan.

    The lovely and charming Emma Gunuey moonlights as a brownie model.

    p.s. I hope all 2.5 of you appreciate how hard it was writing a blog post wth a broken keyboard. I had to do so much copying and pasting! This is my devotion to your Passover chocolate-consumption needs.

    p.p.s. A bonus recipe: MACHOS (matzoh nachos)

    Step 1: Pretend that you're making nachos but use matzoh instead of tortilla chps.

    Yes, that is brisket on Sam's machos and yes, we also eat ham and cheese on matzoh and yes, we are "those" kinds of Jews.

    Wednesday, March 17, 2010


    Check out these awesome dinosaur cookies I made:

    And they were super easy! The original sugar cookie recipe is from here.

    Faux-Gingerbread Dinosaur Sugar Cookies

    • 2/3 cup and 1 teaspoon whole wheat flour
    • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
    • 1/8 teaspoon baking powder
    • 1/4 cup butter, softened
    • 1/4 cup and 2 tablespoons white sugar
    • 1/4 egg
    • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 1 1/2 TBSP pumpkin pie spice

    Step 1: Preheat the oven to 375°F.

    Step 2: Mix the dry ingredients together in a small bowl.

    Step 3: In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar until smooth.

    Step 4: Beat in vanilla and egg.

    Step 5: Gradually mix in the dry mixture.

    Step 6: Using a rolling pin, flatten your dough. Use an awesome cookie cutter or this awesome dinosaur sandwich cutter (that also removes crusts!!).

    Step 7: Bake for 8-15 minutes, depending on the size of your desired cookies. Mine were about medium-sized (8 per cookie sheet) and took 12 minutes in the oven. Let cool before attempting to move.


    Thursday, January 21, 2010

    The return of the muffin pan

    After a brief tryst with cookies, muffins have recaptured my heart, and therefore, my blog. However, lemon poppy seed muffins are SO 2009. In this blog post, I'm taking it to the next level, which I guess logically would be 2010. That makes these muffins super appropriate for this WHOLE ENTIRE YEAR...and eating them is a resolution you can totally, realistically keep.

    I used this lemon poppy seed muffin recipe for the basis of my muffins.

    Citrus Poppy Seed Muffins

    • 3 cups whole wheat flour
    • 1/3 cup poppy seeds
    • 1 tablespoon baking soda
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 1/2 cup melted butter or margarine/5 tbsp canola oil
    • 1 cup sugar
    • 2 large eggs
    • 1 tablespoon grated lemon peel
    • 1 tablespoon grate orange peel
    • 1/3 cup lemon juice and orange juice (feel free to just use lemon juice for a more traditional taste)
    • 2/3 cup skim milk
    • 1/2 cup white chocolate chips (optional)
    • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
    • 1/2 tsp vanilla
    • 1 tbsp grapefruit juice
    • 1 tbsp lemon juice
    Step 1: Preheat the oven to 350°F.

    Step 2: Mix whole wheat flour, poppy seeds, baking soda, and salt.

    Step 3: Beat butter and sugar together, then add eggs. Add citrus zests and juices, and beat the mixture until all ingredients are incorporated.

    Step 4: Add half the dry mixture. Add milk, then add the rest of the dry mixture.

    Step 5: Mix in white chocolate chips.

    Step 6: Spoon into muffin cups.

    Step 7: Bake for 15-18 minutes. Cool for 5.

    Step 8: Dip the tops of the muffins in your citrus glaze. "What glaze is that?" you may be wondering. Well I'll tell you! It's this glaze!

    Mix 1/2 cup powdered sugar, 1 tablespoon lemon juice, 1 tablespoon grapefruit juice, and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla until smooth. You should use this right away, so you might want to prepare it while your muffins are in the oven.

    Always remember: sharing is caring!

    Tuesday, December 15, 2009

    The 5 "Cs" of Delicious

    I really like making muffins, but they are inferior to cookies. This isn't my opinion, it's just fact. Muffins are delicious, don't get me wrong, but there's no beloved Sesame Street character who sings "M is for Muffin and it's good enough for me". So today, my buddy Pirate Cookie Monster and I will be making some epic cookies.

    Chocolate Chocolate Chunk Cherry Cookies

    (I got my proportions from the Original Nestle Tollhouse Cookie recipe)

    • 2 1/4 cups whole wheat flour
    • 1 tsp baking soda
    • 2/3 tsp salt
    • 3/4 cup canola oil
    • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
    • 3/4 cup dark brown sugar
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 1 tsp almond extract (2/3 tsp if you want less of an almond flavor)
    • 2 large eggs
    • 2 cups of chocolate chunks (or chocolate chips)
    • 1 cup of cherries
    • 1 cup of cocoa powder
    Step 1: Preheat the oven to 375°F.

    Step 2: Mix together flour, baking soda, salt, and cocoa powder.

    Step 3: Add chocolate chunks and cherries. Make sure to cover cherries completely in dry mixture.

    Step 4: In a separate bowl, beat together granulated sugar, dark brown sugar, vanilla extract, almond extract, canola oil, and eggs.

    Step 5: Gradually combine the two mixtures.

    Step 6: Stop and look at the ridiculously chocolaty and delicious mixture you've created.

    Step 7:
    Drop cookies on greased pan in tablespoons.

    Step 8: Bake for 9-11 minutes. Let cool for 15.

    Step 9: Enjoy some seriously delicious cookies.

    Monday, November 30, 2009

    Project Bread

    This post doesn't have to do with baking or cooking, but it does have to do with food so I feel it's totally relevant in this forum. A few weeks ago, my friends and I participated in Project Bread's Strike Out Hunger Bowlathon. I want to draw some attention (for the roughly 3 people who read this) to a really great charity that raises money and food (through walkathons, bowlathons, food drives, donations, etc) to feed those who are going hungry in Massachusetts. We often hear about those who are starving in other countries, and we overlook the fact that hundreds of thousands of people go without in our own state. Click here to donate!

    This is Team Naan-Kosher* in all its glory:

    (me, Nirja, Sam, Mayank)

    *I know, right?

    Monday, November 16, 2009

    Whole grain, low know you want a piece of that.

    So for two weeks I baked nothing but pumpkin muffins...I guess I got a little over-excited about Autumn. That's why today, I decided to be totally radical and branch out into lemon strawberry muffins.

    The proportions for this recipe come from here, however, as usual I changed the ingredients to be healthier and added a lot of my own ingredients (read: chocolate).

    Lemon Strawberry Muffins


    • 1/4 cup of Canola oil
    • 1/2 cup of milk (or soy milk)
    • 1 egg (or 3 tbsp of egg whites)
    • 1/2 tsp of salt
    • 2 tsp of salt
    • 1/2 cup of brown sugar
    • 1 3/4 cups of whole wheat flower
    • 1 (generous) cup of strawberries
    • 1/2 cup of dark chocolate chips
    • 1/2 cup of white chocolate chips
    • 2 tsp lemon extract

    Step 1:
    Preheat the oven to 375°F.

    Step 2:
    Oil your muffin tray or put in the muffin cups.

    Step 3:

    Put on some sweet tunes. This is imperative: the muffins will not rise without the proper amount of grooving.

    Step 4:

    Combine milk, eggs, oil, and lemon extract in a small bowl. Beat lightly.

    Step 5:

    Combine flour, sugar, salt, and baking powder.

    Step 6:

    Chop strawberries into small cubes.

    Make sure the strawberries are not poisonous.

    Step 7:

    Add strawberries and chocolate chips to dry mixture, making sure to coat the strawberries completely in flour.

    Step 8:

    Add wet mixture to dry mixture. Stir thoroughly.

    Step 9:

    Fill muffin cups about 3/4 of the way.

    Step 10:

    Put the muffins in the oven. Do something really important like read Perez Hilton for 25 minutes (are they seriously giving Speidi their own show? Haven't we already learned our lesson about this?).

    Step 11:
    Take the muffins out of the oven. Let them cool for ten minutes.

    Step 12:

    Find a willing volunteer for the taste test, and let your future self worry about the dishes.