Cupcakes Always Win


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Vegan Ginger Spiced Hot Chocolate

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My family and I always visit a local tree farm to cut the perfect evergreen for the holidays. We’ve been doing it since we were young. It has always involved a labyrinth walk through a field filled with hundreds of Christmas trees to choose from. We always have trouble finding the one that is perfectly fitting for the occasion.

Some years there is snow, other years there is rain, but no matter what the weather we always strap on suitable outdoor gear and find the perfect tree! We always finish our tradition with some hot chocolate, or apple cider. Which is where this recipe comes in super handy. Having returned from adventures around the world, I wanted to make a more interesting hot chocolate that is loaded with spices! I loaded it with WAY too many marshmallows… just because it looked cool.

I also have been baking so many things because there is always a party, and everyone loves home baking. I had some leftover gingerbread and decided to make some gingerbread sticks that could be used to dip in the spiced chocolatey goodness. It was probably the best decision I made that day.

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The other nice thing about being home for the holidays is having extra helping hands. My sister was super amazing and helped me by being the prop in my little photo shoot. These photos wouldn’t have been complete without her šŸ™‚

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Now the hot chocolate itself is vegan, but I added marshmallows, which are not very vegan at all. If you want to make it vegan, just omit the marshmallows or find some vegan ones in the shops around Kensington Market in Toronto.

Do you have any family traditions over the holidays? What is your go to hot drink when it is chilly? Wishing you a Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, and Happy New Year! Thanks for following me, and I hope to give you some more tasty treats worth making in the new year!

Anna xoxoxoxox

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Vegan Chocolate Stout Milkshake

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Vegan and milkshake didn’t always belong in a sentence together until this exact minute, where there is a photo of a milk-less shake in front of you and it can be yours in moments… well at least moments after making it yourself.

I love trying new beers, and I absolutely love when craft Ontario breweries create unique flavours and seasonals. When making vegan desserts coffee, and stout are the perfect way to add a unique flavour profile to make them taste extraordinary.

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Taking photos of food should usually be quite easy since the subject matter doesn’t move. But because I move, and move everything around to get the perfect photo there are always spills. In this instance, as I was taking a photo of the stout, I happened to spill it, everywhere! Before hitting re-start and cleaning up I took this as an opportunity for a photo, and a story to share.

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Don’t be scared off by the tofu, silken tofu has barely any flavour and absorbs the chocolate and stout flavour extraordinarily well.

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Cheers to stopping by, I hope you enjoyed another recipe from my kitchen, what sort of things do you like to make with stout?

Anna

xoxoxo

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Chocolate Pistachio Biscotti

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While waiting for the snow to subtly drift through the sky, I find myself occupied in the kitchen baking cookies… or biscotti to be precise.

There is really no losing when Chocolate Pistachio Biscotti is on the menu. The only thing missing is a few friends and a pot full of steaming tea.

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The biscotti was really great and did not last more then a minute past the day it was made. The cocoa made the biscotti a little more dense and not as dry because of the higher fat content.

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It is important to not get caught up in the Christmas cheer and to make every moment count! Even if it means really enjoying a good sized portion of fresh Chocolate Pistacho Biscotti. No one is judging here…

Wishing you a time of peace and happiness! I hope to give you a few more recipes for the holiday’s this year. But be sure to check out my recipe list in the above tab for many inspirational recipes for the holiday’s!

Thanks for poppin’ in and hope to see you soon! Much love,

Anna xoxox

Chocolate Pistachio Biscotti

Adopted from Martha Stewart

What you need,

2 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 cup cocoa powder (dutch processed)

1 tsp. baking soda

dash of salt

6 tbsp. butter (unsalted)

1 cup sugar

2 eggs

1 cup of pistachios

How to prepare,

1. Set oven to 350 degree F.

2. Beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, beating after each addition.

3. Mix flour, cocoa, salt and baking soda in separate bowl.

4. Add a little at a time of the flour mixture to the butter/egg mixture.

5. The dough will be really stiff. I usually just use my hands near the end to get all the flour mixed in.

6. Add pistachios to the mixture.

7. Using a parchment lined baking sheet, place the biscotti dough on top. Form a log that is about 12×4 inches.

8. Bake for about 25 minutes. Remove from oven and slice biscotti into 1 inch pieces.

9. Lower the oven to 300 degrees F and return the sliced biscotti in the oven for another 10 minutes. Let cool and enjoy!


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Vegan Blueberry Chocolate Pancakes

I know I made everyone believe that I was going to show off a vegan chocolate cake with vegan mousse. WELL ends up that I didn’t take any photos of the final product because it was eaten super quickly… which in my books means I must make it again… and when I do you all will be the FIRST to see it. Heck, maybe I will have a cake party and invite people over… since I could NEVER eat an entire cake…

…but blueberries, blueberries, blueberries, I could eat bushels of those!

Oh did I ever go blueberry picking! I think the logic is pick a pound, eat a pound and pay for one pound! Fresh blueberries are the best and these chocolate vegan pancakes really make a good breakfast with these freshly picked blueberries.

Breakfast is something I think I am allowed to say I am pretty good at. I love to make brunch for friends that stay over night! It is just something I love to do. Sometimes my friends will even bring ingredients like fruits or nuts to give me a hint of what they would like incorporated into breakfast the next morning. Free ingredients, heck yes!

These pancakes were a little dense without the egg but they tasted great with blueberry jam and extra blueberries on top. The blueberry jam I used was made by my dad (thanks pop!) with the fresh blueberries we picked.

If you want to get real crazy, I will be posting (for real this time) a Vegan Blueberry Mousse next, that could be added on top of these yummy pancakes. So check back! I will try to post it in the next few days!

Thanks friends and happy blueberry picking!

Much love,

Anna xoxo


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Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies

Chocolate is… great

Peanut butter is… great

Chocolate + Peanut butter = superb

Whenever I find myself craving chocolate and peanuts/peanut butter I always wonder who discovered this lovely combination. I wonder if there was a peanut somewhere and some chocolate just happened to melt on top of it and one brave soul ate it… only to discover how delicious it really is! Yup, my imagination is wild but at the end of the day chocolate and peanuts go super well together, and these cookies are proof of that!

This recipe is adapted from Katherine Martinelli ‘Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies’Ā . The main difference is that I didn’t add chocolate chips and dipped some of my cookie dough balls into coconut.

Ā These cookies were very good, I liked adding the coconut layer to give a dramatic look… because lets face it these cookies are drama queens… ok lame joke, I know… this is why I bake and don’t practice stand up comedy…

I have a couple of exciting posts coming your way, another classic cookie recipe and some pretty celebration cupcakes! This weekend I am taking some time to visit some dear friends in Ottawa! I am super excited and hope to have some great times and food while I am there. I will have my camera in tow if there happens to be a ‘blog worthy’ moment…

Wishing you the best of weekends! Have a great day,

Much love, Anna xoxoxo


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Chocolate Chocolate Chocolate Cake

Monday morning should always start with chocolate chocolate chocolate cake. Trust me, it is great. Why chocolate chocolate chocolate and not simplyĀ triple chocolate? Well, we got chocolate cake with chocolate whipping cream and chocolate ganache all piled together to create this delicious ensemble.

I also happened to make 3 cakes… just because my current roomates (from New Zealand) are leaving and I wanted to do something for them that they could enjoy. As I understand when you are travelling a small gift is just too big because you never have enough room toĀ pack everything, plus they have to keep enough roomĀ for me to fit into their suitcase. And I can’t be eating much of this cake if that is to happen.

Ā It also just so happened that another friend was having a birthday this weekend. So one of these cakesĀ dropped by toĀ visit and was never to return… well that is usually the story with chocolate chocolate chocolate cake!

Ā IĀ will miss my friends who areĀ flying to Europe and then to New Zealand after backpacking forĀ a bit. But I am so happy to have crossed paths with them and hope I get another chance to make chocolate chocolate chocolate cake for them. The sooner the better! Miss youĀ dudes, and have an awesome adventure!!

Much Love,

Anna oxxoxo


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Orange Shortbread and Chocolate Ganache

A relaxing Friday has approached. This week was filled with homemade bruscetta, pasta andĀ chocolate ganache for strawberries to beĀ dipped in. Well seeing as my stomach is bigger than my eyes I had way too much left over ganache.

ButĀ this is never a problem… leftovers = creativity

While walking home from a job fair IĀ decided what I would use that leftover ganache for…Ā a topping for orange shortbread. I have never tried baking fruit directly on top of a shortbread but it turned out great! I think the added orange zest in the shortbread made it extra citrusy.

Ā Ganache is a really easy way to cover a bar or cake, it is a little softer than regular chocolate melted and placed on top of a bar or cake because of the whipping cream. It is really easy to make, its equal parts whipping cream and melted chocolate, so the amount you need can be increased or decreased with no stress!

Its snowing here!Ā Everytime it snows it feels like the first snow in December because the snow never lasts. So here is hoping that is lasts a little longer this time!!

Have a great weekend!

Much Love, Anna xoxo