July 27, 2016

Guavaberry Colada

I was lucky enough to get to travel to St. Maarten at the end of March of this year, with my daughter. We fell in love with the island, the people, the food and especially the drinks.  Tropical drinks are my favorite anyway, I love fruit flavored drinks that you can't really taste the alcohol in.  I had several great drinks but I was only able to get the recipe for a couple of them.  This one was by far my favorite.

Now I'm kicking myself for only bringing back one bottle of this rum.  Is is SO good.  I was able to find some American locations that carry this rum but sadly none of them are near me.  I guess another trip to St. Maarten is necessary.  I wonder how many bottles I can bring back without getting arrested.

This drink is a little hard to describe unless you've had Guavaberry Rum.  It's sweet but not overly sweet, fruity but not necessarily a guava flavor as you might expect. It's sort of creamy due to the coconut cream. You don't necessarily taste the pineapple juice either, all the flavors just blend together so well that it's sort of a nondescript fruit flavor.  Sorry, that's the best I can describe it.

If you ever see a bottle of this rum, do yourself a favor and grab a bottle or six.

Guavaberry Colada
Recipe from Guavaberry.com

  • 2 oz. St. Maarten Guavaberry Rum
  • 1 oz. coconut cream
  • 3 oz. pineapple juice
  • ice
Cooking Directions
  1. Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. Garnish with fresh pineapple

July 20, 2016

Brooke's Best Bombshell Brownies

These brownies were a late night decision by my family after dinner.  As usual, I named off the not so appealing items we could have for an after dinner treat.  And, as usual, my family named something they wanted in which we didn't already have, but needed to be made.

I should probably mention that when they asked for brownies, my mouth almost immediately started drooling.  But, I put my wrist to my forehead and threw my head back very dramatically and said "yes, of course I will whip up a batch of brownies, even though I just slaved for hours making dinner".  That probably would have actually worked, had we not just had salad for dinner.

Anyways, never one to turn down a request from my family, I jumped online to find my next brownie recipe.  This one jumped out at me for a couple of reasons.  First of all, it was made in a 9x13 inch dish which means there would be plenty....for my family. Second, the description said "chewy" which is a key word for me.  I love chewy brownies and chewy cookies.

I have to say, the recipe was easy to throw together.  There's plenty of chocolate in there with the addition of the chocolate chips (you could frost them if you really wanted more chocolate). They are chewy, the edges get nice and firm, and the flavor is very chocolaty.  Exactly what you're looking for in a brownie.  Most of us have these ingredients in our pantry, so whip some up tonight.

Brooke's Best Bombshell Brownies
Recipe from AllRecipes

  • 1 cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 3 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
  • 4 whole eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
Cooking Directions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350º
  2. Spray a 9x13 inch dish with non-stick cooking spray
  3. In the bowl of your stand mixer with the paddle attachment add the sugar and butter and mix well.
  4. Add the eggs one by one blending after each addition.
  5. In a separate bowl add the flour, cocoa powder and salt and whisk together.
  6. Slowly add the dry ingredients into the wet with the mixer on low until thoroughly incorporated.
  7. Add in the chocolate chips and mix briefly.
  8. Pour the batter into the prepared dish, even out and bake for 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
  9. Let cool on a cooling rack and serve.

July 13, 2016

Chia Chocolate Chip Cookies

My husband was at work one day, when his Captain pulled out a bag of little Chia Chocolate Chip Cookies and was telling my husband how wonderful they were.  They're healthy, gives him energy, curbs his appetite, and tastes delicious.  After my husband tried one, he called me to see if I could track down a recipe.  Which, of course, I could.  I mean, I practically live on Pinterest after all.

During the course of making these cookies I discovered how I didn't have all of the same ingredients the original recipe called for, so I substituted for what I did have. The important ingredient being Chia seeds, which I have plenty of.

Chia seeds are so very good for you.  They can puff up to more than double their size if left in a liquid, which means if you eat them as just a regular seed then they will fill you up, because of all that puffing up they do inside your stomach.  So, eat a cookie, wait, and soon you'll forget about being hungry.

You can make these to be dairy free (if you can find dairy free chocolate chips) or gluten free if you follow the original recipe.  Mine are neither, but they are delicious! I love the chewiness from the oatmeal and the slight coconut hint I got from the coconut oil.  Obviously the chocolate chips are obvious.  I'm loving this recipe.  Great flavor, and texture with the added bonus of filling you up when you're starving and getting all the added benefits of the oatmeal, chia seeds and coconut oil.  My husband will be taking these on his trips from now on.

Chia Chocolate Chip Cookies
Recipe modified from huffingtonpost

Dry Ingredients
  • 1 cup old fashioned oats
  • 1/2 cup brown pastry flour
  • 1/2 cup cake flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup chia seeds
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
Wet Ingredients
  • 1 whole egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil
Cooking Directions
  1. Mix the dry ingredients together and the wet ingredients together and then mix them together.
  2. Refrigerate for 1 to 2 hours.
  3. Preheat the oven to 355º, lightly oil a baking sheet.
  4. Roll the dough into golf ball sized pieces and then flatten half way.
  5. Bake for 12 minutes. Check on them in the oven and if they aren't spreading you might have to help them by pushing down on them with a fork.
  6. Bake for another 2-3 minutes or until very lightly golden.
  7. Cool completely on a wire rack before moving to a plate or storage container.

July 7, 2016

Cherry Cheesecake Dip

You're looking at the dessert I made to bring to the 4th of July party we attended.  Even though it was smokin hot, this dip held up pretty well.  I served it with graham crackers and it was D-lishious!  We were only at the party for a couple of hours (because we got a new puppy, and we brought her with us) and we wanted to get her home for dinner and to cool down.

Talk about an easy appetizer or dessert to put together.  Only four ingredients and then whatever you want to dip into it. It was ready in less than 15 minutes and then just keep it cool until ready to serve.

I have to say, this is one of my favorites.  I mean, I love cherry cheesecake and this is SO much easier and just as good.  Plus, you can just take what you want.  The graham crackers are a perfect accompniament with this dip as they serve as the "crust".  I just loved it and apparently so did everyone at the party.  We were only there for 2 hours and yet I took home a half empty 9x13 inch dish.

I had to share a picture of our sweet little girl.  Her name is Kacey, she is my daughters puppy and we all just adore her.  She is a Mini Australian Shepherd.  She's taking up much of my time as we potty train her but she's super smart and it's going really well. 

Cherry Cheesecake Dip
Recipe from The Country Cook

  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 of a 7.5 ounce jar marshmallow cream
  • 8 ounces cool whip, thawed
  • 14.5 ounce jar pie filling, I could only find the larger can size and it worked perfectly
  • graham crackers for dipping
Cooking Directions
  1. Mix together the cream cheese and marshmallow cream until smooth.
  2. Add the thawed cool whip and mix until smooth.
  3. Spread into a 2 quart casserole dish or a 9x13 inch dish and top with the cherry pie filling.
  4. Refrigerate leftovers.