• Daily Life

    Kitsnacks: Raisin Bar Cookies

    These, like every other molasses cookie I’ve ever had, are incredibly addictive, and are a family favorite that I don’t make all that often because (I realized as I was making them) the dough isn’t nearly as good to eat raw as chocolate chip cookie dough is. :)

    Raisin Bar Cookies
    3/4 c butter
    1 c sugar
    2 eggs
    1 tsp vanilla
    1/4 c molasses
    3 3/4 c flour
    1/2 tsp baking soda
    1/2 tsp cinnamon
    1/4 tsp salt
    1/4 tsp ginger
    1 c raisins
    1 c powdered sugar
    2-3 tbsp water

    Cream butter & sugar. Add eggs & beat thoroughly. Add vanilla & molasses & beat thoroughly. Mix in dry ingredients & stir in raisins.

    Spread the dough evenly on a GREASED 10×15″ baking sheet, or 2 smaller ones.

    Bake 12-15 minutes at 350°F.

    Allow to cool in-pan for several minutes, but not entirely. Mix powdered sugar & water into a thin, but not watery, icing. Spread on warm cookies, allow to cool completely, & cut into bars.

    Chef’s Notes:
    1. I use a pretty generous cup of raisins, if you wanna know the truth.

    2. These are easy to both under-bake and over-bake and neither is nearly as nice as Just Right (I feel other cookies have more wiggle room in that regard, but not these ones). Keep an eye on ’em.

    3. Long experience tells me that a silicone baking brush is best for spreading the icing over these things, so if you’ve got one, use that.

  • Daily Life

    Kitsnacks: Maple & Brown Sugar Apple Butter

    I revamped my maple apple butter recipe entirely this year and it is Good. A big part of the difference is I was using eating apples, because that’s what I had this time instead of super sour cooking apples, and it takes much less maple and sugar to overcome the sourness with sweet apples. I did use about five tart apples in this, too, and would recommend that, my own self. So:

    Miz Kit’s Maple & Brown Sugar Apple Butter

    15-20 prepared (peeled, cored, sliced) apples
    1.5 c apple juice
    8 oz maple syrup
    1/2 c brown sugar
    1 tsp salt
    1/2 tsp cinnamon

    Put apples and apple juice into a large pot, cover, and boil until the apples are soft (about 30 minutes), stirring occasionally. Puree the mix in a blender/food processor/whatever until smooth. Turn into a deep, flat enamal-lined pan & put into a pre-heated oven at 325°F (150°C, 130°C fan assisted) and roast, stirring very occasionally, for 1-2 hours, until the puree has reduced by half.

    Remove from oven. Stir in syrup, sugar and salt. Return to oven for 1.5 to 2 hours, stirring slightly more frequently. Add cinnamon just before jarring; mix well, and jar as you usually would.

    This is, frankly, a much better recipe than the old one. You can, of course, still use very sour apples, but taste the mix as it reduces to see if it’s sweet enough, and if not, add more brown sugar.

  • Baking,  Food,  Kitsnacks,  Recipes

    Kitsnacks: Cocoa Brownies

    This is our family’s go-to brownie recipe:

    Cocoa Brownies
    3/4 c sugar
    3/4 c flour
    1/3 c cocoa powder
    1/2 tsp salt
    1/2 cup butter, room temp or softer
    2 eggs
    1 tsp vanilla

    Whisk the dry ingredients together. Add butter, eggs and vanilla and mix. Scrape into a 9×9″ buttered pan. Bake at 350°F for 15-18 minutes, until barely done (a fork inserted in the centre should come out slightly gooey but not *wet*). Allow to cool. Frost as desired. (I usually use chocolate buttercream frosting.) Eat! Makes 16 brownies.

    (This recipe scales well and can be used to make up to a quadruple batch successfully. I’ve never tried anything larger. We often make double batches, though. :))

  • Daily Life

    Kitsnacks: Homemade Pop Tarts

    Many years ago, presumably before Pop Tarts began to be a thing that occasionally showed up on Irish grocery store shelves, I got the idea into my head that one could, y’know, probably MAKE them. I looked for recipes, but never got around to making them.

    A couple weekends ago I was making pot pie anyway and thought I should make up an extra batch of pie crust and try ’em.

    oh my flippin’ stars.


    I used my basic pie crust recipe and added about a quarter cup of sugar to it, which I had never in the history of pie-crust-making done before and which rendered a *very* nice sweet crust. I used homemade jam, blackberry in some and strawberry in others, and oh my flippin’ stars. The ones with the blackberry jam were IN. SANE. INSANE. (The strawberry jam ones were merely fantastic.)

    Then, because the recipe I wasn’t really following suggested it, and because Pop Tarts Have Frosting, I made (well, Ted made) some icing that was, frankly, *completely* unnecessary. I mean, like, genuinely unnecessary. It made them too sweet, and I generally have a sweet tolerance like nobody’s business.


    I believe that in the future if I want to make them with frosting I’ll probably forego the sugar in the crust, because honestly, I felt that something had to give, there.

    Recipe follows!

  • Baking,  Kitsnacks,  Recipes

    Kitsnacks: Pumpkin Muffins

    I made a batch of absolutely gorgeous pumpkin muffins this morning. Light, fluffy, tender, just the right amount of sweetness.

    The dog ate half of them.


    Baloo’s Favourite Pumpkin Muffins:
    1 (15 ounce) can pumpkin puree
    4 eggs
    1 cup melted butter
    2/3 cup water
    2 cups white sugar
    3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
    2 teaspoons baking soda
    1 1/2 teaspoons salt
    1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
    1/4 teaspoon ground ginger

    Whisk wet ingredients together in a large bowl. Whisk dry ingredients together in another bowl. Whisk dry ingredients into wet ingredients until barely mixed. Scoop into buttered, floured muffin tins with a large spoon, not quite filling the tins to the rim. Sprinkle some cinnamon and sugar on top if you think of it. Bake at 375°F/180°C for 18-22 minutes, or until a skewer comes out clean.

    Makes about 30 muffins. Would also make a very nice loaf, I expect, but I didn’t do that.


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