Back-to-school has taken on a whole new meaning in the Currie house. With all the kids away at college, the days of after school snacks and bake sales are a thing of the past. But, the joy of baking is still alive and well in my kitchen (thank goodness for care packages). So, I decided to give my favorite back-to-school recipe a makeover and what I discovered was a game changer. All those years I made strawberry jam bars with the store bought stuff. But, little did I know, making strawberry jam from scratch is a 2-ingredient, 5-minute commitment. You can make it while the crust is baking or in advance for homemade strawberry jam bars through and through.
Category Archive Cookies & Bars
You can skip the campfire to make these smores cookies and dare I say it? They’re BETTER than the real thing! It starts with basic chocolate chip cookie dough using whole-wheat flour for the graham effect. When they’re all baked and golden, pile on the marshmallows and give it a quick run under the broiler till they’re toasty and gooey. A final drizzle of melted chocolate will have you wishing summer could last all year long. But wait! You CAN make these all year long.
Sometimes the best recipes are the ones that are made the most. This one for best lemon bars has been a “keeper” in the SHC kitchen for over 20 years. While the success of most baked goods is exacting measurements, this is one of those recipes in a constant tweaking mode. Finding the perfect sweet/sour combo makes them irresistible and earning the title ‘best lemon bar’.
July 4th is just a little more special in my little town of Summit, New Jersey. That’s because Summit is all-American all the time. Our neighborhood, with 30-plus kids, means instant play dates, pick up ball games, sleepovers and potlucks without ever leaving the street. But, on July 4th, Summit hosts a fireworks display that rivals anything in a larger city. Families all over town host open houses and cookouts and not much has changed in the last fifty or so years. So, if you’re bringing potluck to someone’s house this July 4th, here’s an all-American recipe for peanut butter chocolate chip cookies. They couldn’t be easier to whip up and they just happen to be gluten free too!
There’s a certain fascination with a blood orange. Ordinary on the outside, the inside is like Andy Warhol pop art, bloody red and otherworldly. They thrive in cooler weather so they’re in season right now and it’s worth seeking them out. It’s a sweet and less acidic orange, great for snacking or the main ingredient in these showstopper blood orange oatmeal cookies.
For home cooks, a favorite holiday tradition is a cookie exchange and chewy molasses cookies will be your new go-to. Everyone brings a batch of their finest and goes home with an assortment. It’s not too late to invite your besties over for some good cheer and cookies and it couldn’t be easier if you follow Secrets of a Home Cook’s three simple stress-free guidelines:
Who needs candy on Halloween when you have pumpkin whoopie pies? Deceptively easy to make because the secret is to use canned pumpkin; you probably already have the other ingredients. Make it a Halloween tradition by getting your little goblins involved with the baking and assembly process. They might just ditch some of their candy for a homemade treat that they had a hand in making.
Home cooks know the best recipes travel by word of mouth. So, it wasn’t surprising to stumble upon this sinful one for espresso blondies, courtesy of Holly Hurd, while unpacking our kids in their college dorm. Put two chatty moms together and the next thing you know, we’re swapping recipes for care packages. But, she’s not just a baker. Holly is the founder and CEO of venturemom.com, a web site and free newsletter that help moms turn their passions into money-making ventures. From guidance to inspiration to a web store (featuring beautiful and trendy products, and services too, from mom owned businesses), Holly has made her website one-stop shopping for “mompreneurs” everywhere. Check it out: www.venturemom.com.
These next few weeks are tough ones for us parents. With back-to-school imminent it’s a mental tug of war between kicking their heiney’s out the door and hugging them tightly so they never leave. Whether it’s your anxiety or theirs, a home-baked volcano brownies makes everything better. This classic recipe is topped with nuts, chocolate and toasty marshmallows, giving the impression of a volcano erupting. Could it be a homemade science project? Nope, it’s just a little love from home.
What do you get when you cross a chocolate chip cookie with a graham cracker? You get a rocky edge cookie, of course. It’s the best of both worlds all rolled into one and super easy for kids to make – hint hint – for Mother’s Day.