Bastille Day Indulging: Triple Chocolate Financiers

Triple Chocolate Financiers (1) copy

France may be long gone from the World Cup, but that doesn’t mean we have to stick to schnitzel (or whatever it is the Dutch/Argentinians eat) at our viewing parties this weekend. Bastille Day — everyone’s favorite excuse to overdo it on red wine and rich food — is coming up this Monday, which means it’s time to break out the good stuff.

In honor of France’s big day, Master pâtissier Francois Payard was nice enough to share this over-the-top indulgent recipe for his signature triple chocolate financiers.

You’ll need a financier pan for the recipe below (clearly you have one, right?) If not, good ol’ muffin tins will do just fine.

Triple Chocolate Financiers

Read More
Sponsored Content

Endless Peeps: Vanilla Sugar-Peep Sandwich Cookies

02 14 14_1343_edited-1

When we say endless, we mean it. I know the day of love has past, but it is still dreary February and we could all use a pick-me-up. I made these for Valentine’s day for my fiance (she was stuck going to work to save lives as essential personnel while I enjoyed a snow day). Plus I had vanilla cream Peeps, and a sweet tooth. The result? Peep sandwich cookies.

Years ago, my mom found a sugar cookie recipe that was just delectable. They melt in your mouth, have just the right amount of sugar, and they have the perfect texture. With golden brown edges, they provide just the right crunch to be complemented by creamy vanilla marshmallow. PLUS, there is additional sweetness in the vanilla frosting that acts as a glue for the marshmallow.

These are good fresh out of the oven or a few days later. I’ve even dunked them in milk. I was concerned about the sandwiches becoming too sweet, but the peep has just enough of a flavor without being too overwhelming. Plus, the vanilla flavor in the peeps goes well with the icing and the cookie. The challenge is pushing the cookie down without breaking the cookie and popping the peep out of the sandwich. Once you mess up a couple, it’s smooth sailing and off to enjoying your Peep-Sandwich.

Vanilla Sugar-Peep Sandwich Cookies

Read More
Sponsored Content

Of Cookbooks, Blog Posts, and E-books


When looking for a recipes these days, there are so many, many, many options. When I have a particular recipe/ingredient/meal I am looking for, I will often just turn to a good ol’ google search and see where the interwebs take me.  I will often land on someone’s blog, and this may be what brought you, dear reader, over to Endless Simmer in the first place.  Blogs can be good for browsing, too, but when I am really seeking inspiration from out of the blue, nothing beats an actual paper cookbook, preferably weighing a few pounds and liberally strewn with pictures.  On a side note, I have recently discovered the joy that is library cookbooks, but I’ll save my extended thoughts on those for another day.

Somewhere between these two media, the blog and the cookbook, lies a strange beast: the cooking e-book.  Like blogs, e-cookbooks can be produced by more or less any dude or dudette with a stove and a computer.  They can serve many purposes: some are just like traditional cookbooks; others are blog spinoffs.  The two categories of e-cookbooks that I have found most useful are mini recipe collections (think “30 savory pies”); and e-books that focus on just one recipe, but one that is longer and more complicated than can be contained in one blog post, like “authentic Pad Thai.”

I was recently sent a review copy of Kolaches – Amazing & Easy! which fits solidly into the second category of my kind of e-cookbooks. For the uninitiated, kolaches are a slightly sweet Czech pastry often filled with fruit or cheese.  This book contains a brief history of the pastry, followed by instructions on how to make the dough, make the fillings, and assemble the pastries.  Also included are many variations on the initial recipe and what to do with leftover dough.

But…these were a freakin’ lot of work.  Perhaps it’s just my baking ineptitude, but despite this book’s exclamatory title,  there was nothing easy about making kolaches.  And in the end, after all my (long) hard work, the end result tasted like biscuits with jelly.  Good biscuits with jelly, but I’m not sure they were worth all the extra effort.


If you are more bakingly inclined than I am (and you certainly are), you may want to check out this e-book on Amazon.   In addition to making kolaches, the book includes instructions for some great little rolls, or “little ducks” as the author calls them, that you can make with the leftover dough.  These were less work, and still super-delicious.

So what about you?  Do you prefer cookbooks, e-books, or blogs? Any little known favorites to share?

Sponsored Content

How Much Peanut Butter is TOO Much Peanut Butter?

When we heard there was a new book about all about peanut butter, we got so excited that two of our bloggers had to test it out. Here’s Emily and snebbu’s dueling thoughts on Peanut Butter Comfort.

Emily: I’ll openly admit it: I’m a peanut butter lover. And I mean loooooooverrrr. Love it in savory recipes, love it in sweet recipes. Spicy Thai-style peanut sauce? Yep, love. I’ll happily take a peanut butter dessert over a chocolate dessert any day. So when does it cross the line? How much is too much?

Peanut Butter Comfort

Averie Sunshine’s new cookbook, Peanut Butter Comfort, helped me dive into this question. Or, to give you the full title, Peanut Butter Comfort: Recipes for Breakfasts, Brownies, Cakes, Cookies, Candies, and Frozen Treats Featuring America’s Favorite Spread. Whew—I’d say that covers a lot of ground. Pretty much anything you could put peanut butter in, Sunshine found a way to do it.

The good stuff: This book is very cute and definitely well-made. Novice cooks will appreciate the accessible and carefully explained recipes and background info. Plus there are plenty of appealing photos! The maybe-good, maybe-not-so-good stuff: all the recipes are pretty simple. Once again, fairly inexperienced people will like this, but I could have used some recipes that were a bit more complex in their flavor profiles or techniques. There is something to be said for familiar, back-to-basics comfort recipes, though.

Snebbu: I wouldn’t go so far as calling it “cute,” but it is very well organized. It is easy to navigate and is categorized in a meaningful way. For instance, you can create your own peanut butters, bake desserts, or even cook savory meals—all categorized in that way. I do agree with Emily in regards to the simplicity of the recipes. BUT, that’s not always a bad thing. I’ve found other cook books to cumbersome, lengthy, and expensive. These are recipes that won’t break the bank either.

Emily: So, the first recipe I made was the Marshmallow Butterscotch Fluffernutter Bars. I love all of those things (just look at all my Peeps posts, anything marshmallow is a-ok in my book) but I have to say this recipe fell a little short of my expectations. I don’t really see how I could have messed up the instructions, so I don’t think it was user error, but I wish the bars had come out a little drier and more balanced. They basically just tasted like tons of melted peanut butter and butterscotch chips that had been re-solidified. So maybe this recipe is truly… too much peanut butter. (Gasp!)

Snebbu: Damnit! I was going to try these out at a company party next week. They look so good. I may have to try these out anyway—I’ll let you know if I get the same results. I really can’t fathom such a thing as too much peanut butter, but the word “re-solidified” does not sound tasty.

Emily: Luckily, the second recipe I tested turned out to be much more exciting: Coconut Carrot Cake and Cream Cheese Cookies. Oh man. Talk about more things I love: carrot cake, coconut, cream cheese?! I knew I had to make these, stat. I prefer moist, chunky cookies with a lot of stuff in them, and these did not disappoint. The finished product came out super tasty, but honestly I would rather just eat this dough by the spoonful. (And there’s not even any raw eggs in it, for those of you who actually worry about that. I’ve been eating raw eggs in cookie dough for 20something years now, and I’m still alive!)

Coconut Carrot Cake and Cream Cheese Cookies

Coconut Carrot Cake and Cream Cheese Cookies

Read More
Sponsored Content

Cocoa Crumble Ricotta Cake


There’s something about a good, fresh ricotta that compels me to eat a pound of  it by the spoonful. One of my local delis sells an amazingly creamy ricotta, which I buy in two-pound increments: one for cooking/baking, one for eating on a spoon.

This extraordinary ricotta made me remember a cake I made a few years ago. It had a cocoa shortdough crust, a custardy ricotta filling, and was topped with a buttery cocoa crumble. I baked it, and against explicit instructions to not unmold the cake before it was completely cool, I unmolded it still warm and the ricotta flowed from the center like molten lava. It was a delicious disaster.


I dug through my old recipe folder, found the recipe scribbled on coffee-stained paper, and attempted it again. This time I practiced patience, and it sure paid off. This has a lovely, creamy, cocoa-y, and not-too-sweet flavor that is perfect with a cup of dark coffee. Make this cake well in advance, at least 8 hours before you plan on eating it. It really is disastrous to cut into this cake before it has set. You can store the cake in the fridge for up to 3 days, or in the freezer (well wrapped) for 2 weeks.


Cocoa Crumble Ricotta Cake

Read More
Sponsored Content

Man-Whore Bars: Chocolate-Chip-Oreo-Peanut-Butter-Cup-Rice-Krispie-Treat-Chocolate-Ganache

I realize I’ve been a bit MIA, but lets make-up. To start, I bring you Man-Whore Bars. Remember Slutty Brownies? Well these guys make those look downright prude. These bars are appropriately named since they contains 4 desserts in one–2 cookies (chocolate chip and Oreos); candy (Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups); rice krispie treats; and chocolate ganache—plus more chocolate chip cookies for a final sprinkling.

Man Whore Bars from Endless Simmer

Damn, right? I thought so.

Now more importantly, I’m on a mission to mainstream these like Jessica Simpson did for the Slutty Brownies on Katie Couric’s show. Which by the way, I birthed the cousin to those slut brownies with these Slutty Cheesecake Bars—seriously damaging stuff. But this–this, might be my all-time favorite over-the-top bar and the follow-up to the slutties.

So can I ask you guys a  favor? {lease make these, pass them around and proudly refer to them as Man-Whores Bars, because maybe then they will reach Ryan Gosling who can then explain them to Katie.

Ah, you guys are fantastic. I’m so glad to be back, now let’s get busy and make some bars.

Man-Whore Bars

Read More
Sponsored Content
Page 1 of 1212345...10...Last »