Leftover Easter Candy Cookies

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It’s been over a week since Easter and you still have a bag of random candy visited somewhere you think nobody can hear you when you crack into those wrappers. With every crinkle is a little bit of regret. Meanwhile, you stare into the bag wondering when the hell you will ever reach the bottom. We here at Endless Simmer are problem solvers. Which is why we bring you Easter Candy Cookies. Take whatever easter candy you have (minus jelly beans) and throw them into these suckers. You won’t regret it.

Ingredients

  • 3 cups flour
  • 2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 2 sticks room temperature butter
  • 12 tbsp. sugar
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • Your remaining chocolate Easter candies CHOPPED

Recipe

*Preheat oven to 350 degrees

  • Blend butter, sugars, and add eggs and vanilla until mixed
  • Gradually mix in dry ingredients – do not overmix
  • Stir in the candy
  • Bake on cookie sheet fro 8-10 minutes

We didn’t bake all of the dough at once – it will freeze well and bake it whenever you have a hankering for a warm cookie.

Decadent Fudge Brownies

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After a long, hard day, we tend to gravitate toward one of two things (sometimes both): booze or junk food. Last week, I just had to have junk food. Lucky for me, my wife made homemade, fudgy, super-chocolaty brownies. These things are so decadent, thanks to Dutch dark cocoa, espresso, and lots of butter, that there is no need to top them with ice cream. Just an ice cold glass of milk and a brownie – that’s all you need to turn any day around. Don’t believe me? Try them for yourself.

Decadent Fudge Brownie Recipe

Ingredients

  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 1/4 cup double dutch dark cocoa
  • 1 tsp. coarse salt
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. espresso powder
  • 1 tbsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 cup unsalted butter
  • 2 1/4 cups sugar
  • 1 1/2 cup flour
  • 2 cups chocolate chips (mix it up to what you like – half dark, half milk, all milk, peanut butter – the world is your oyster, damnit)

Recipe

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease 9 x 13″ pan

  • Beat eggs, cocoa, salt, baking powder, and vanilla for about 4 mins on medium speed
  • Melt the butter with sugar until all butter is melted over low-med heat (do NOT let it bubble)
  • Add hot butter/sugar mixture to the egg/cocoa mixture and stir until smooth
  • Add flour and chocolate chips – stir until smooth
  • Pour batter into the pan and cook for about 30 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean

Basil, Mozzarella and Tomato Panini – in a Waffle Iron!

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After making a list of crazy things to make in a waffle iron, I decided to “have at it” myself. But what to make? And how much of a mess do I want to make in a waffle iron? Lucky for me, I had a snow day to experiment. Every once in awhile, we make BMT paninis for lunch to satisfy some cravings. BMT meaning basil, tomato, and mozzarella. We make ours with pesto instead of basil. Anyway, I made the typical BMT sandwich and threw it in a waffle iron to make the panini.

The key to this recipe is the bread. A crusty bread is a must when it comes to shoving it into the waffle iron. If you pick a slice of bread that is soft, you will just end up with a big, gooey mess in the waffle iron. We used ciabatta. With the waffle iron bringing heat to both sides of the sandwich, there is no need to flip, and the hit gets to the cheese much quicker. Try it out for yourself!

BMT: Basil, Mozzarella and Tomato Panini…in a Waffle Iron

Ingredients

  • Crusty bread
  • Mozzarella cheese
  • Basil pesto
  • Tomato

Recipe

  • Get out the waffle iron and grease well
  • Build your sandwich
  • Put it in your waffle iron and hold it down with force You may have to rotate your sandwich to evenly flatten it

Easy enough?

French Onion Soup Made Easy

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Don’t tell me that you skip over the crock of french onion soup whenever it is on the menu. I have a hard time not getting it! The cheese that oozes over the top of the crock, the delicious piece of bread in the middle, does it really matter what the broth tastes like at that point? But still, even the broth of french onion soup beats out most soups. Then there are the strategies in eating it. Some people mix the cheese in and eat throughout, others save the cheese for last, even others dive right into the bread. No matter what way you eat it – it is indeed tasty.

So one of those cold winter days (feels literally like yesterday), my wife took out the dutch oven and asked “what do you think of french onion soup tonight?” To which my response was, “well, do we have enough cheese?” Hells yes we did. Hours later, we had nice hot bowls (sorry, we don’t have crocks yet) of french onion soup oozing with cheese over the top. This was a success that went straight into the recipe book. Here you go.

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Weekday Brunch: Simple Sausage Strata

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What’s a strata? Well, a breakfast strata is a casserole made of egg, cheese, bread, and breakfast meat. Ron Swanson’s dream (other than a heaping pile of bacon on top of an additional pile of bacon, on top of sausage). Anyway, at work, our gracious overlord bought the staff breakfast, but we were also asked to bring a casserole of our choosing. …or juice. Well I wasn’t going to be the ass face that brought juice, so I went to one of my favorite brunch items that was also one of the easiest – Sausage Breakfast Strata. Why? Because I’m an awesome team player with a culinary hand that will blow your face off by surprise. Bitches.

What could go wrong? You have breakfast in one dish. Bread, cheese, sausage, and egg. That’s a 2-2-2 deal in diners across this nation. A staple that one shan’t take away. So I made it the night before, let it sit in the fridge, and woke up early to pop this in the oven. I brought it into work, and BINGO-BANGO – it was destroyed by all. “Oh, I didn’t know you were a good cook!” “YOU made that?!” “Hey, everyone loved that breakfast casserole you brought in.” Faces. Blown. Off. And you can too…here’s how.

Simple Sausage Strata
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Ingredients

6 Eggs

2 cups Milk

1 1/2 – 2 teaspoons of mustard (yellow or dijon)

1 loaf of bread (your favorite – something crusty)

1 – 2 cups Shredded Cheddar Cheese

1 Sleeve of Sausage (1 lb crumbled sausage)

Salt & Pepper

Recipe

Cook the sausage to brown

Whisk together eggs and milk with salt & pepper

Cube your bread (I had a nice crusty loaf of Puerto Rican bread)

Grease an oven-safe baking dish (about 13 x 9)

Cover the bottom of the dish with cubed bread (use crust parts first). Eat the extra.

Sprinkle sausage on top of the bread – throughout entire dish. Use all sausage.

Sprinkle about half of the cheese on top of the sausage.

Cover with egg mixture

Sprinkle remaining cheese on top

Cover with foil and let sit in the fridge overnight. You don’t HAVE to do this, but it tastes better this way.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and bake the dish (uncovered) for at least 35 minutes. Depending on your oven – it may be longer. To check, put a knife in the center and it should come out clean. Let it sit for at least 5 minutes before serving.

Homemade Fluffy Pancakes

DSC_0157Weekend mornings lead to the best breakfasts of the week. Some indulge in eggs benedict, others an omelet, and of course the classic: pancakes. I grew up nearly expecting pancakes at least one day of the weekend every week. My family went so far as buying a griddle for the grill so that we could make an evenly cooked pancake out on the deck. Pancakes are the bomb. Mixes are good, yes. But did you know that you can make them from scratch with staples that every person (should) have in their kitchen? Yes.

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 3 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1 1/4 cups milk
  • 1 egg
  • 3 tbsp butter (melted)
  • Cinnamon and/or syrup to your liking

Recipe

Okay, ready? Mix dry mix wet, combine to lumpy consistency. Cook on the stove until fluffy.

Whoa Baby! Fruit-Filled Dutch Baby for Breakfast

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Didn’t we tell you that breakfast is the best meal of the day? Well if you didn’t believe us, maybe you will now. Adapted from Cooking Lightthis combination of funnel cake and pancake will satisfy anyone’s hunger. Bonus – it’s healthy! We filled ours with fruit. But think of the possible fillings: nutella, chocolate, homemade whipped cream, cream cheese icing, peanut butter, put chocolate chips in the batter…need I say more? Here ya go:

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp cornstarch
  • 10 tbsp milk
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 egg white
  • 2 1/2 tbsp butter (melted and divided)
  • 1 tsp lemon rind

Recipe

  • Place 8″ or 10″ cast iron skillet in oven while pre-heating to 450 degrees
  • Combine all ingredients with only 1 tbsp of butter
  • Whisk for 2 minutes.
  • Remove the skillet when he is pre-heated and coat with cooking spray.
  • Swirl the rest of the butter on pan and add the batter to the pan
  • Cook for 20 minutes in a 10″ pan and 25 minutes in an 8″ pan

Fill with your favorite filling and enjoy!