RSS Feed

Monthly Archives: November 2015

Two Sisters Times Two, Serial #37 and Peanut Butter White Chocolate Bark

Posted on

One good thing about posting each week on Thursday (aside from giving our readers a chance to pick up the ingredients on the way home from work the next day for a Friday night or weekend treat!) is that each year we get to make a post on Thanksgiving!

Now sometimes this linkage does produce logistical problems–like trying to prepare the recipe and take the pics while packing the suitcases and loading the dog in the car and heading out the door, or figuring out how to get Internet service to publish the post while weaving through mountain roads with no cell tower or wi-fi connection to be had anywhere. But we’ve figured out these glitches and will work out any new ones that arise.

And for our Third Annual Thanksgiving Day Post, we’ve come up with an over-the-moon doozy (thanks, Sally!): Peanut Butter White Chocolate Bark! This stuff is really out of this world–colorful (in perfect autumnal colors, though you could change the candies on top to red and green for our next big holiday!), easy and quick to make, and absolutely irresistibly delicious.

You may not get the recipe in time to make some for your Thanksgiving table, but save a little room in the tummy for a taste of this treat over the long holiday weekend. You’ll be glad you did, and glad R&R publishes its posts on Thursdays each year, one more Thanksgiving Day treat.

Now off to get the turkey in the oven.

pb white chocolate candy

Peanut Butter White Chocolate Bark

1/2 cup creamy peanut butter

1/2 cup powdered sugar

2 Tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract 

pinch of salt

8 ounces white chocolate chips

2 teaspoons margarine

1-2 teaspoons milk

1/2 cup peanut butter candies, peanut butter chips, and/or milk chocolate chips

Line a 8×8 square pan with parchment paper. Set aside.

To a mixing bowl, add the peanut butter, powdered sugar, melted butter, vanilla, and salt. Mix these ingredients together until smooth and creamy. Set aside.

Add the white chocolate chips, margarine, and 1 teaspoon of milk to a sauce pan. Heat on low, stirring constantly, until the white chocolate is melted and smooth. If the white chocolate still seems thick, add one more teaspoon of milk until it becomes smooth and easy to spread.

Pour half of the melted white chocolate into the parchment paper lined pan. Spread to cover the parchment paper. Spoon the peanut butter mixture onto white chocolate layer, and spread evenly with your fingers to cover the white chocolate. Top the peanut butter layer with remainder white chocolate, spreading to cover peanut butter. Sprinkle peanut butter candies on top.

Place the bark in the freezer for 20 minutes or until set. Remove and break into pieces. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.

pb white chocolate bark

{Adapted from Sally’s Baking Addiction}

Two Sisters Times Two, Serial #37, audio © Jeffrey Anderson

Two Sisters Times Two, Serial #37, text © Jeffrey Anderson


Two Sisters Times Two, Serial #36 and Microwave Chocolate Chip Cookie

Posted on

Hey, did your mom ever yell at you for eating the chocolate-chip cookie dough because it had raw egg in it and might make you sick? Yeah, you know what I’m talking about! But you snuck a few spoonfuls from each batch while she wasn’t looking and never got sick once except that one time you barfed at school but I think that was from the manicotti they served for lunch in the cafeteria. There was a line of kids throwing up that day. Boy, did it stink. Haven’t been able to eat manicotti since.

But I started out talking about the guilty pleasure of eating uncooked chocolate-chip cookie dough. It’s so decadent and naughty and half the fun is knowing you shouldn’t be doing it. But then there is the slight risk of picking up a case of food poisoning.

So Reading and Recipes has the perfect answer: Microwave Chocolate Chip Cookie! This cookie is gooey and dense and full of all those wonderful cookie dough flavors and textures, but it is sufficiently heated to make it safe to eat. Furthermore, you can customize the cooking time to suit your personal preference. The only hard part is waiting a few minutes for it to cool down before indulging yourself–don’t want to trade the risk of illness for burning the top of your mouth. Save that rare pleasure for your next slice of too hot pizza!

choc chip cookie in a mug

Microwave Chocolate Chip Cookie

1 Tablespoon unsalted butter

1 Tablespoon brown sugar

2 teaspoons granulated sugar

1/8 teaspoon vanilla extract

pinch of salt

1 egg yolk

3 Tablespoons all-purpose flour

2 Tablespoons chocolate chips

Add the butter to a microwave safe mug or bowl. Microwave the butter on medium power until it is completely melted, but not boiling. Remove the butter from the microwave and add the brown sugar, granulated sugar, vanilla and salt. Mix ingredients together until completely combined. Using a fork, whisk the egg yolk into the batter. Slowly stir in the flour and mix until just combined. Scrap sides of mug if needed. The batter should resemble cookie dough at this point. Fold in the chocolate chips.

Place mug back into the microwave. Microwave the cookie on high for 40 seconds. Check to see if the cookie is done. If not, microwave an additional 10-20 seconds. Do not exceed 60 seconds. Remove the cookie from the microwave and allow to cool slightly before eating.

Makes 1 cookie.

microwave choc chip cookie

{Adapted from No. 2 Pencil}

Click below to listen to or read Serial #36 of “Two Sisters Times Two”.

Two Sisters Times Two, Serial #36, audio © Jeffrey Anderson

Two Sisters Times Two, Serial #36, text © Jeffrey Anderson


Two Sisters Times Two, Serial #35 and Orange Cranberry Bread Pudding

Posted on

In case you were starting to think about Thanksgiving desserts . . .

Not that Reading and Recipes would jump the gun by two weeks–but, hey, you’ve got to plan the menu, buy the ingredients, figure out the prep time, reserve a slot in the oven schedule, and so on. With all that planning in mind, two weeks isn’t too soon to be thinking about Thanksgiving.

And we think this Orange Cranberry Bread Pudding would be a delicious, scrumptuous, colorful, and unique addition to your Thanksgiving menu. To top that off, it’s easy to prepare and serve, and can be made a day or two ahead, refrigerated, and warmed just before serving. If you have a small gathering, it can be your main dessert. If you’re having a large crowd, it can be one of several selections on the dessert table. Either way, it will be a hit with your guests, a new and flavorful comfort food in the fall/Thanksgiving theme.

But wait a minute. Maybe you need to sample this bread pudding before serving it to guests. No problem at all! Mix yourself up this small-batch recipe and give it a try. It’ll be the most fun you ever had with a taste test!

Cranberry Orange Bread Pudding

Orange Cranberry Bread Pudding

1/2 cup cream*

1/3 cup white chocolate chips

2 eggs

1/4 cup milk

1/2 cup orange juice

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

3 cups cubed stale bread

1/4 cup dried cranberries

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 5×7 inch pan, and set aside.

Add the milk and white chocolate to a saucepan. Heat over medium heat, stirring constantly, until the white chocolate is completely melted. Remove from heat and allow to cool for a few minutes. Meanwhile, in a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs, cream, orange juice, vanilla extract, salt, and ground cinnamon until all of the ingredients are combined. Slowly pour the milk-white chocolate mixture into the orange juice and whisk ingredients together.

Add the cubed bread and dried cranberries to the liquid. Press bread into the liquid so every piece is covered. Allow bread to soak for 10 minutes.

Pour the bread pudding into the prepared pan. Baked in preheated oven for 20-25 minutes, or until set and golden brown. Remove the bread pudding from the oven and allow to cool slightly before serving. If you want to make a sauce to drizzle on top the bread pudding, try this vanilla sauce recipe. A dollop of whipped cream or small scoop of vanilla ice cream on top of the bread pudding is also delicious.

Serves 4.

*Cream makes this bread pudding extra rich. Feel free to substitute milk or half and half for the cream.

Cran Orange Bread Pudding

{Adapted from Magical Recipes}

Click below to listen to or read Serial #35 of “Two Sisters Times Two”.

Two Sisters Times Two, Serial #35, audio © Jeffrey Anderson

Two Sisters Times Two, Serial #35, text © Jeffrey Anderson


Two Sisters Times Two, Serial #34 and Pumpkin Gobs

Posted on

Pumpkin Gobs–no, that’s not the caved-in jack-o-lantern at the end of your neighbor’s sidewalk. It’s this week’s recipe from Reading and Recipes!

But first a little history, for those who are ignorant (or, let’s be more gentle, uninformed) like me. I’d never heard of gobs until I was an adult and moved to the South (of the United States). But, as with snickerdoodle cookies (which we talked about a couple of weeks ago), I’ve learned to love gobs (and, believe me, it didn’t take much effort–gobs are very “lovable”).

The traditional gob consists of two dome-shaped layers of chocolate cake with a creamy white vanilla filling in the middle. They can be eaten at room temperature, sort of like a cupcake sandwich, or frozen and eaten like an ice cream sandwich. Either way, gobs are quite a sweet treat.

And these Pumpkin Gobs build on that rich (in more ways than one) history. In this case, the outer layers are like a pumpkin/spice cake. The cream filling in the middle can be any frosting or cream filling of your choosing; our suggestion would be to use a whipped cream-cheese frosting as your filling, with maybe a touch of cream or milk added to the cream cheese and a little more time beating the mixture to make it creamier and lighter.

Then have fun eating these new-wave gobs, or watch the smiles emerge if you are nice enough to share, or try freezing one and eating it on one of these warm Indian summer evenings. Any way you serve it, these Pumpkin Gobs are bound to be a new fall favorite!

 pumpkin gobs

Pumpkin Gobs

1/2 cup light brown sugar

1/4 cup vegetable oil

1/3 cup pumpkin puree

1 egg

1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

3/4 cup all-purpose flour

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice

cream cheese frosting*

pumpkin gob cakes

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper or a Silpat mat.

In a mixing bowl, whisk together the brown sugar and oil. Stir in the pumpkin puree, egg, and vanilla extract until all ingredients are well combined. Add the flour, salt, baking soda, baking powder, and pumpkin pie spice to the wet ingredients. Slowly stir the dry ingredients until mixed into the dough, careful not to over mix.

Using a large spoon, scoop about 1 heaping tablespoon of batter onto the cookie sheet. Repeat with remaining dough. Make sure you get an even number of cookies. I had 8 cookies total.

Bake cookies for 12-14 minutes, or until they are set and begin to turn a golden brown. Remove the cookies from the oven and allow to cool for 10 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.

Once the cookies are completely cool, spoon two tablespoons of cream cheese frosting* onto the under side of half of the cookies. Sandwich the frosting with remaining cookies. Store cookie sandwiches in airtight container in the refrigerator for one week. You can also freeze these cookies for a frozen treat.

Makes 4 cookie sandwiches.

*I tripled this homemade cream cheese frosting recipe. You can also use classic vanilla buttercream, either homemade or store bought.

pumpkin gobs

{Adapted from Dessert for Two}

Click below to listen to or read Serial #34 of “Two Sisters Times Two”.

Two Sisters Times Two, Serial #34, audio © Jeffrey Anderson

Two Sisters Times Two, Serial #34, text © Jeffrey Anderson