chocolate & peanut butter chip cookies

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i first made a version of these cookies years ago – remember these chocolate peanut butter cup cookies?  pretty awesome photography, huh?  haha, sad days with my old phone that took terrible pictures.  anyway…

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with the peanut butter cups, the cookies were just a bit too sweet. so i made some adjustments and came up with this version. believe me, it is sooooo much better. chris agrees too – it’s now one of his favorite cookies.

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the mixture of peanut butter chips and semi sweet chocolate chips provide a much better balance than the peanut butter cups did.

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another reason these cookies are great is that they are almost brownie like – soft and kind of chewy, since they are soft baked. yum!

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white chocolate chip macadamia nut cookies

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so as you now know, chris and i are expecting our first child in october.  we are of course super excited.  i am also really grateful that my pregnancy has been pretty smooth so far.  the only major difference is of course,  i have this big ol’ belly…

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and i am hungry all the time.  i mean i eat ALL THE TIME!  and i want to eat ALL THE FOODS!  it is crazy!  after one meal, i’m thinking about the next meal or snack i get to eat.  plus i spend a lot of time thinking about the different restaurants i want to eat at – chris and i actually have a calendar planning out when and where we’re going to eat.  a mess i tell you!

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i also have major hankerings for different treats – sometimes sweet and sometimes savory.  this past weekend, i had a craving for white chocolate macadamia nut cookies.  the blessing and curse of being able to bake is that i was easily able to fulfill this craving with a batch of these soft, chewy white chocolate chip macadamia nut cookies.

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this recipe is a bit unusual in that it calls for bread flour and a bit of cornstarch.  but that is exactly what creates this cookie’s amazing texture.  they are also soft baked making them slightly dense and enhances the buttery-ness of the dough, which is all just the perfect vehicle for the creamy white chocolate chips and crunchy, decadent macadamia nuts.

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chocolate peanut butter no bake cookies

no bake cookies 9i made these chocolate peanut butter no bake cookies for chris’ birthday last year and then again just a couple months ago.  it’s no surprise that he requested these cookies because it combines his two faves – chocolate and peanut butter.

no bake cookies 8i’m surprised that i don’t make these more often, considering that it is one of chris’ favorite types of cookies (his other favorites are these big fat chocolate chip cookies & chocolate and peanut butter chip cookies).  plus they are really easy and you don’t have to heat up the apartment turning on the oven, which is a definite plus in this summer heat.

no bake cookies 10these no bake cookies are made on the stove with a mixture of all kind of goodies – peanut butter, butter, cocoa powder, and of course the main ingredient quick cooking oats.  the first time i made them i used just quick cooking oats, but the second time i ran out and used half quick cooking and half traditional.  they were equally good as the first batch, so i figure – just use whatever kind of oats you have on hand and you’ll be good to go!

start my combining the sugar, butter, milk and cocoa powder in a medium saucepan.

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oreo white chocolate pudding cookies

after 5 cupcake recipes, i think it’s time to take a break.  so i present you another tasty treat… oreo white chocolate pudding cookies.  remember the chocolate chip pudding cookies i posted a while ago?  i actually recently made a batch of those for my brother and he said they stayed nice and soft for two weeks.  crazy!  that vanilla pudding is powerful.  haha.

anyway, these cookies are very similar to those chocolate chip pudding cookies.  they have all of the soft, chewy goodness plus oreos!  i love that there are cookies in cookies.  you know that that’s going to make a great cookie.

i also really like the white chocolate chips in this recipe.  of course you could make them with semi-sweet chocolate chips instead but i the white chocolate provides a nice balance with the oreo chunks.  so enough talking… it’s time to whip up some of these oreo white chocolate pudding cookies.

the first step is to cream together the butter, sugar, and brown sugar.  then add the eggs, pudding mix, and vanilla extract.  the original recipe calls for white chocolate pudding mix, but i couldn’t find any at my grocery store so i just used vanilla pudding instead.

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parmesan basil crackers

last week we had a couple snow days.  snow days are the best.  i mean what can be wrong with free days off.  awesome!  having some extra time, i decided to do some baking.  it was nice to have the time to try out some new recipes for no particular reason.  i usually bake specifically for birthday treats or for gifts and cook so that chris and i have food to eat throughout the week.  but this time, i just baked for baking sake.  sooo nice!

i had been wanting to try out this recipe for parmesan basil crackers for a while now and i finally had my chance.  there is nothing like homemade crackers.  they are so much better than store bought – you just can’t beat the freshness and flavor.  i made a few other cracker recipes before, homemade wheat thins and homemade cheez-its.

i will say the texture of these crackers aren’t as crispy as what you typically think of for crackers.  they are a little bit crumbly – maybe like a savory shortbread cookie.  i think i was supposed to bake them a little bit longer and they would have been more crispy.  still they are absolutely delicious.  the parmesan and basil flavors shined!

p.s. how cute is this bag above.  it is actually a reusable snack bag.  a while ago, i got a bit annoyed using so many ziplock bags to pack our lunches.  so i did a search online for reusable sandwich bag options. there are a lot of different reusable sandwich and snack bags on etsy but these are the best.  they are made by snackaby.  unlike other ones that are made from cotton fabric and nylon lining, these are made of proprietary material and laminated cotton that makes them dishwasher safe and super easy to clean.

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