Butter Pecan Granola

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I cannot even believe there’s only about 1 week left until Christmas. My house has been decorated for a while and I have been wrapping way too many gifts (note to self, next year needs less gifts). The thing is…I have baked exactly zero cookies. I don’t know what’s going on, but I need to make some cookies happen asap. BUT, I have baked 2 batches of this granola for gifting and it is pretty much the equivalent of a cookie in granola form.

A buttery, oat-y, pecan studded, and maple soaked cookie in a granola outfit.

I usually go the coconut or olive oil route with granola, but since tis’ the season and all that jingle-jangley-Christmas-jazz, I went with butter. OH, MAN. Granola game changer. The butter gets that browned flavor from the long, low bake in the oven and mingles with the maple syrup that sweetens the granola in the most perfect, amazing, way. It’ll make your kitchen smell like butter and maple drenched heaven. It’s definitely not you’re health-conscious-crunchy-granola. More like your butter-drenched-sweet-and-decadent type of granola. I couldn’t help but eat a handful (okay, maybe 2) right off the sheet pan, still warm. I mean, the oats make it healthy-ish and the buttery, maple-y, pecan and coconut studded bits make it special and oh-so holiday appropriate. I packed it into jars and added a little tag for a super-easy, super-delicious gift.

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Butter Pecan Granola

Adapted from my Coconut Oil Granola recipe.

3 cups rolled oats

1 cup pecans

1 cup unsweetened coconut flakes

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1 teaspoon cinnamon

3/4 cup maple syrup

1/2 cup unsalted butter

1 teaspoon vanilla

Preheat your oven to 325ºF and lightly grease a baking sheet (I love to use coconut oil spray for this).

In a large mixing bow, combine the oats, pecans, coconut, salt, and cinnamon.

In a small saucepan combine the maple syrup and butter. Heat over medium-high until the butter is melted. Remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla. Add the maple-butter mixture to the oats mixture and stir to coat completely. Spread the mixture evenly onto the prepared baking sheet and bake in 15 minute intervals, stirring between each, for about 1 hour or until the granola is golden and starting to crisp. It will become more crisp as it cools.

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Super Easy Coconut & Walnut Fudge

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Hey! I have this totally festive and celebratory fudge for you all! It’s so damn simple, I mean, literally 2 ingredients, plus mix-ins for flava.

Why is this fudge festive AND celebratory? Well, 2 reasons…

1. It’s the holidays, y’all! I’m sure you already knew that…that’s where the festive comes in. 2. Sean loves holiday fudge and we have a major reason to celebrate him, as he just landed a new job is a far-off and distant city–Portland, Oregon!

So, we are totes moving in a few weeks. We found out the officially-official news just last week and are in a whirlwind of packing and purging and holiday planning. We are super excited since this position (with his current company) is a total step up and will bring us SO MUCH CLOSER to our beloved family and friends…like, a day-trip in the car away, instead of a 3-day driving marathon. Also, I hear Portland is a pretty cool place, so it will be totally exciting to explore a new city.

And even though things may be a little more than hectic around here, I’ve still gotta get my holiday-treat on, so easy is the name of the game and this fudge is exactly that. No stirring of boiling sugar and chocolate and hoping/praying for a smooth, grain-less result. We’re just melting with a side of stirring, then we’re done. Not a grainy bite of candy in site, just creamy-dreamy chocolate and coconut + walnut goodness. BOOM, easiest holiday treat ever!

PS, I’ve never been to Portland and won’t make it  there before our move in January, so any recommendations or affirmations would be greatly appreciated. I AM SO EXCITED!!

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Super Easy Coconut & Walnut Fudge

Adapted from Heather Baird for Betty Crocker

This recipe can be made in the microwave or on the stove top. For microwave instructions, click the link above. 

1 can (14oz.) sweetened condensed milk

1 bag (12oz.) chocolate chips, I like semisweet

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 cup chopped walnuts, toasted

1 cup toasted coconut

Prepare an 8x8inch baking pan by spraying with cooking spray and lining with parchment, leaving a few inches of overhang on two sides for easy removal. Secure the parchment with binder clips.

Fashion a double boiler out of a heat proof bowl fitted over a saucepan with a few inches of simmering water, taking care that the water does not touch the bottom of the bowl. Add the condensed milk and chocolate chips and stir until the chips are melted, the mixture is well combined, and smooth. Remove the bowl from the top of the sauce pan and stir in the vanilla, followed by the walnuts and coconut, until well combined. Scrape the fudge mixture into the prepared pan and spread evenly. Allow the fudge to cool to room temperature before covering with plastic and placing in the refrigerator to set for several hours. Once set, cut the fudge into cubes and serve (or gift)! [/recipe]

Chocolate-Dipped Coconut + Rum Popsicles

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This week is probably one of the best weeks of the year as it’s #POPSICLE week!! What? Is that a thing?

Yes, it’s totes a thing. My boyfren, Billy aka Wit & Vinegar, said so and we best listen.

There are 26 of us frozen-treat-lovin’ bloggers posting our popsicle creations this week. Definitely click this link RIGHT HERE to see the full list of bloggers and pop recipes on Billy’s blog.

I made you some creamy coconut popsicles spiked with a little spiced rum and dipped in a crispy chocolate shell. The best thing about ice pops are that they are equally as easy as they are satisfying. The coconut is creamy with little toasty bits throughout and the rum brings that boozey warmth. The hardest part is dipping these in the chocolate shell…and really it’s not tough at all, just another step of deliciousness. The shell is easily made by mixing together melted chocolate and coconut oil – super simple, yet super magical. The coconut oil makes the magic happen…as soon as the chocolate hits the frozen coconut pops it hardens into crisp, chocolaty, magic. I sprinkled a little flurry of extra coconut on top for good measure…plus it’s so good lookin’!

  [recipe]

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Chocolate-Dipped Coconut & Rum Popsicles

Makes about 10 pops using THIS mold.

These pops aren’t super boozey—and as tempted as you may be to add more rum, don’t. More booze sounds like a grand idea, but it will inhibit the pops from reaching frozen glory…meaning, the pops will never freeze up right. Do like Tracy does and dip these pops in some extra rum (or even bourbon!) to fulfill your cocktail-turned-dessert desires.

3 1/2 cups coconut milk

1/2 cup toasted, unsweetened coconut plus more for garnish

1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons organic cane sugar (or granulated)

1.5 ounces (3 tablespoons) spiced rum

1 cup chocolate chips

3 tablespoons coconut oil

In a mixing bowl combine the coconut milk, toasted coconut, sugar, and rum. Whisk to combine and dissolve the sugar. Divide between ice pop molds and freeze 1 hour before inserting sticks. Continue to freeze until frozen solid – at least 4 hours.

Melt the chocolate and coconut oil together, either in a double boiler or in 30 second bursts in the microwave, stirring between each burst until melted and smooth. Pour the chocolate into a glass wide enough to fit a popsicle. Unmold the pops in batches, about 2 at a time, leaving the rest in the freezer, and dip pops into the chocolate. Sprinkle with more coconut immediately, the chocolate will firm up quickly! Enjoy! [/recipe]