Lemon Thyme Sugar Cookies

If I send out spring energy into mother nature, do you think she’ll reciprocate and make spring actually come to be?!

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So we’re a week into April, and I won’t complain too much – I know we didn’t have a terrible winter but dudes – I’m so ready for spring! I want to wear open toe shoes, cute flowy dresses, I want to be able to finally leave my huge-mongous winter jacket behind!! Also … there’s tons of ice cream to be eaten on bright balconies – priorities.

Could there BE anything more spring than lemons?! Well, tulips maybe … and I’ve been trying to flood my kitchen with them – but lemons to me, with that burst of tang – ahhhh brrring on the spring!!

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Today’s Lemon Thyme Sugar Cookies are dainty and kind, but relatable. They would fit in beautifully over tea, but put them out at a lemonade stand ( do kids still do this?!) and they’ll be gone in no time. The cookies are sweet, savory and a little tangy – most importantly, you’ll want them in your face as soon as they come out of the oven!!

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Lemon Thyme Sugar Cookies

1 cup margarine

1 cup brown sugar

1/2 cup granulated sugar + 2 tbsp (separated 1/2 cup by 2 tbsp)

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 tsp baking soda

2 tbsp cornstarch

2 eggs

2 1/2 cups flour

2 tbsp lemon zest  (separated 1tbsp x 1 tbsp)

1 tbsp fresh thyme (finely chopped)

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Directions

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Pre-heat oven to 350 oc.

In large bowl, combine margarine, brown sugar, 1/2 cup granulated sugar, vanilla and eggs.

In a separate bowl whisk together baking soda, cornstarch, flour and 1 tbsp lemon zest.

Combine wet and dry ingredients.

In a small bowl, combine 2 tbsp sugar, 1 tbsp lemon zest and 1 tbsp thyme. Massage together to release all of the lemon-thyme extracts.

Scoop out cookie dough using a 1 tbsp scoop, roll into a ball and gently roll in lemon-thyme-sugar mixture. Place on cookie sheet 1/2 inch apart.

Bake for 9 minutes, and remove from baking tray right away.

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Honey Roasted Pineapple Carrot Cake with Cinnamon Pecan Brittle

Like most holidays eater weekend means …

An extra day off – yay!!

Tons of food – yay!!

Tons of easter/bunny/spring themed snacks – yay!!

And chocolate – yaaaaay! Yaaaaayyy!! Yaaaayy!!

And naps, there are bound to be a couple naps!

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Again, this year we’ll be doing our annual Easter egg hunt for my parents – seriously, this is the best thing ever. Often my parents would forget where they hid the candy, normally turning into a huge mess, so one year – I think my brother and I were probably in our early 20’s- we turned the tables, and decided to hide candy for my mom and dad.

Best.idea.ever.

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I’ve never seen anything as funny, and they totally get into it. ahhh parents, gotta love them!! Speaking of parents, I feel like I haven’t been home in forever – seriously, I live less than an hour away, and the last time I saw them was like a month ago. It.breaks.my.heart.

But also, real life … I guess. So I’m even more excited than ever to be spending the weekend with them!! Also, there’s nothing like mom’s home cooking in exchange for making her Easter bread…. And carrot cake.

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DEAL!!

Take a lookie look at the cake I got for you today – carrots, cinnamon pecans, annnddd ohhh look at that cream cheese frosting! Sooo … a muffin with frosting?! – pretty much, at least that’s how I was able to justify it when I ate it for breakfast – plus carrots, nuts, dairy in the frosting …. I’m pretty much eating kale.

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Honey Roasted Pineapple Carrot Cake with Cinnamon Pecan Brittle

1 1/2 cups + 4 Tablespoons vegetable oil ( divided 1 ½ cups + 2 tbsp – 2 tbps)

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1 ½ cup brown sugar

6 eggs

1 Tbsp. vanilla extract

2 ½  cups flour

¾  cup whole wheat flour

1 Tbsp. + 1 Tsp ground cinnamon (divided 1 Tbsp + 1 Tsp)

2 tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. salt

1 tsp. baking powder

¼  tsp. ground cumin

¼ tsp ground cloves

¼ tsp ground ginger

2 large carrots peeled ( 1 finely grated – 2, coarsely chopped)

1 tin pineapple rings

2 Tbsp Honey

Prepared cream cheese frosting  (or you can make your own … )

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Directions

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

In a large bowl, combine chopped carrots, 2 tbps oil, 2 tbsp honey and 1 tsp cinnamon and pineapple rings. Roast for 30 minutes. Once finished removed from oven.

Lower the oven to 350 oc and allow carrot-pineapple combo to cool.

Grease and flour  one large 12-inch round baking pan or two 9-inch round baking pans.

In the bowl of a large stand mixer, mix together 1 ½ cup + 2 tbsp oil, granulated sugar, and brown sugar until combined and smooth. Add in the eggs one at a time, add vanilla.

In a separate bowl, whisk together the remaining dry ingredients flours, remaining cinnamon, baking soda, salt, baking powder, nutmeg, cloves, ginger until combined.

Add cooled carrot-pineapple mixture to a blender, and blend to a thick paste ( it should resemble apple sauce) – you may have to add a little bit a water to help the process.

Combine all wet and dry ingredients.

Pour the batter evenly into the prepared cake pans.

Bake for 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle of the cakes comes out clean.

Remove from oven and allow to cool. In the meantime, prepare cinnamon pecan brittle

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Cinnamon Pecan Brittle

1 egg white

1/4 cup honey

1 teaspoon sea salt

1 teaspoon cinnamon

2 cups pecans

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DIRECTIONS:

Preheat oven to 300 degrees.

In a large bowl whisk together egg white, honey, salt and cinnamon.

Toss nuts in the egg white mixture to coat.  Pour nut mixture onto a parchment paper lined baking sheet.

Bake for 30 minutes, until nuts are browned.

Allow nuts to cool for 5 minutes at room temperature.

 

Assembling the cake

Once cake and brittle has cooled, level off both carrot cakes and break apart brittle.

Divide each cake horizontally (leaving you with 4 or 3 cakes depending on the size of pan used), between each layer, slater on the prepared cream cheese frosting, top with next later of cake. Repeat for all layers. Top the last layer of cake, with your brittle.

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Happy Easter everyone!!

 

Mocha Melting Moments Cookies

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There’s two more days until Christmas!! WOOOO HOOOOOOO!!!

Tell me, you’re done all of your Christmas shopping?! – if not, I vote homemade gifts for everyone.

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Sooo this year I went a little overboard on cookies … I mean yes, for the holiday season in real life, but also on the blog…. Annnndd while you can never have too many cookies – I feel like I may have saved the best for last… not that I’m playing favourites, I can’t be biased when it comes to snacking on santa’s favourite treat.

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Buuuuuuuuuutt … don’t these cookies remind you of snowy mountains?!?  In other news I can pretty much guarantee it will be snowing in July around town since it’s way too warm right now for us to be having a white Christmas.

February is going to hit us hard isn’t it?! I’ll be dreaming of these days in a couple weeks won’t I?! My only issue is how the heck am I going to have a magical snowy white Christmas morning, sipping hot chocolate by the fireplace … you know, like how Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen did in To Grandmother’s House we go!! Ahhh the plights of my life … rooooof-stooouufff.

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Mocha Melting Moments Cookies

Ingredients

1/2 cup flour

3/4 cup cocoa powder

¾ cup cornstarch

¼ tsp salt

1/2 tsp instant coffee powder ( or expresso powder)

⅓ cup confectioners sugar + 1 cup confectioners sugar, sifted ( once cooled)

1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature

1 tsp Baileys Liquor

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Directions:

In a medium sized bowl whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, cornstarch, salt and instant coffee powder.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the butter and sugar. Add Baileys. Mix in flour mixture.

Divide dough into two. Shape into 1 inch log – flatten slightly. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 350º F.

Take out the refrigerated dough and scoop into 1 inch balls. Bake for 10 minutes.

Remove from oven and allow to cool, once cooled, dust the tops with remaining confectioners’ sugar.

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Merry Christmas everyone, I hope you have a beautiful season filled with love, family, food and of course lots to laugh about – I’ll be sure to be back next week xox

Butterscotch Coconut Cookies

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Are you sick of cookies yet?! Hah, as if there’s such a thing as being sick of cookies … ppaaalleeeaassse! I do think this year, I’m on an all time record of the amount of cookies that have come out of my kitchen .. what can I say, I’m trying to get into santa’s goodbooks and a little extra snacks on Christmas eve can’t hurt … also, all the snacking that happens – Christmas-ing and holiday partying is hard work … aka sitting around in comfy socks, sipping on hot toddys!!

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In other anxiety-inducing news, have you finished your Christmas shopping?!?! Have you started?!?! I can officially answer no and no to the above. HELP ME … Why do the malls turn into hunger games around this time of year … can’t we all just be nice and STOP bumping into me – it’s NOT cool … and Santa is watching, so is the creepy elf on the shelf … p.s I’m SO doing that when I have kids … anything to help them with getting a therapist when they’re older.  Isn’t that what the holiday season is all about … *creepy smiley emoticon

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These little nuggets of joy are crispy, and boozy, and sweet!! They’re a mix of a macaroon and a rum ball … kind of.

Butterscotch Coconut Cookies

Ingredients:

½ cup coconut oil

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1/4 cup brown sugar

1 egg

1 tablespoon malibu rum

1 cup all-purpose flour

½ teaspoon baking powder

½ teaspoon sea salt

1/4 teaspoon cinnamon powder

1/2 cup butterscotch chips

1 1/4 cup shredded sweetened coconut

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Directions

Preheat oven to 325º F.

Cream coconut oil and sugars. Add egg, and rum. Set aside.

Whisk together the flour, baking powder, sea salt and cinnamon. Add to coconut oil mixture. Stir in butterscotch chips and shredded coconut.

Spoon onto a prepared cookie sheet. Bake 15 minutes.

 

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Sweet Mint Popcorn Chocolate Cookies

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Have you seen the new Sweet Mint Popcorn?!?! I’m not even a mint fan and it’s a whole new level of addiction. It’s goooooooooooooooooooooooood! And crunchy, and minty, and sweet, and heeelllooo Elf, Home Alone, Love Actually, Serendipity movie marathon while downing the bag!!

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And so true to my nature, I mock it all up and toss it in some cookies!! …. And then down all of them during the movie marathon!!

I dedicate these cookies to my bestie, even though she hasn’t eaten them, I thought of her the entire time while making them. There’s no one I know who loves mint and chocolate more than her … not kidding, it’s kind of like my chocolate peanut butter addiction.. except on a whole new level … not kidding, like Aladdin’s whole new world kind of level. It’s very possible that I’ve now successfully scarfed down enough cookies that I no longer know what the heck I’m talking about… not kidding!

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Sweet Mint Popcorn Chocolate Cookies 

6 tablespoons butter, softened

1 cup sugar

2 eggs

1/4 teaspoon mint extract

1 ¾  cups all purpose flour

¾  cup cocoa

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon sea salt

1 cup sweet pepper mint popcorn + 1 cup for topping

½ cup vanilla frosting

½ tsp mint extract

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Directions

Preheat oven to 350

Cream butter and sugar together.

Add in eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.

Add in 1/4 tsp mint extract.

In separate bowl, stir together flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt. Add flour mixture to Butter mixture.

Fold in popcorn.

Scoop dough onto prepared cookie sheet – bake for 12 minutes.

Remove from oven and completely  cool cookies.

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Once cooled, in a separate bowl, combine frosting and mint extract.

Microwave for 30 seconds.

Drizzle onto cooled cookies and top with popcorn.

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Soooo pretty .. soooo minty … sooo yuuuummm!!

Gingerbread Chai Snickerdoodle Pound Cake

I’m obviously on a mission to guarantee your kitchen and home smells like a million-billion-zillion bucks .. aka the holiday season!!

Could there BE anything more Christmas-y that cinnamon and gingerbread smells?!?!

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Our tree goes up this weekend!! I can’t wait, I always loved putting up the tree growing up, but it’s a little bit more special now that it’s just Mr. LTSL and I. It genuinely is OUR tree, and as you look at it, you can definitely see our personality shining through. Our decorations range from places we’ve traveled to together, shiny gold blubs, tons of homemade knickknack’s and guarding it all, just at the tippy top sits batman ready to fight off any prying Grinch … and right next to him, a cupcake of course. Randomness, at its best.

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I’m sure there will be Christmas carols playing, and I’ll be baking up a storm!! And there will be wine … possibly, probably, mulled. Annnnd with all of that hard work of rocking around the Christmas tree… we’ll need cake!!

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Gingerbread Chai Snickerdoodle Pound Cake

Ingredients:

4 eggs, room temperature

2 cups sugar + 2 tablespoons ( separated)

1 teaspoon almond extract

1 tablespoon  dark molasses

2 all-purpose flour

1/4 cup cake flour

21/4 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon ground ginger powder

1 teaspoon cinnamon powder + 1 tablespoon ( separated)

1/2 tsp fresh nutmeg

½ teaspoon ground clove

1-1/4 cups milk

4 Chai Spice Tea bags

2/3 cups butter

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Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

In a large bowl, beat eggs. Slowly add 2 cups sugar, until mixture is light and fluffy. Add almond and molasses.

Sift together flours, baking powder, ginger powder, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, nutmeg and ground clove. Slowly add to batter.

In a small saucepan, heat milk and chai tea – you want to begin to see small bubbles forming and the tea extracting. Do not boil.

Once simmering, remove tea bags and add butter. Allow it to melt.

Slowly ( and carefully) add hot mixture to the batter. Stir just until combined

Pour into a greased baking pan. Bake at 350° for 60 minutes.

While the cake is baking, combine remaining 1 table spoon of cinnamon and 2 tablespoons of sugar in a small bowl.

Once the cake is finished, remove from oven and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar topping.

Allow to cool completely, and slice.

Cool on a wire rack.

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Pour me a glass , and start blasting the Christmas carols….  it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas!!

Orange Cranberry Muffin Cookies

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We’ve got some cookie, cake, muffin top, biscuit type action happening here!!

These cookies are daaaarrrrnnn tootin fun #DTF ( Name that show, and no – not jersey shore), but I don’t know if I can actually call them a cookie.

Can we just call them breakfast?! Oranges, cranberries and muffin top crumble?!?! Wait, does that kind of remind you of a coffee cake.

I feel like my recipe is going through an identity crisis!!

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Does it all cancel out, if it’s deeeelicious?!

Heh – the weather around Toronto is also going through a bit of an identity crisis — I know I will regret these words come February but it’s December uno and I haven’t seen any snow … HOW THE HECK WILL WE HAVE CHRISTMAS WITHOUT SNOW?!?! In random news, did anyone go black Friday shopping?!? Cyber Monday clicking?!!?

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Oh the holidays … soooo darrrrrnnn tootin fun!!

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Orange Cranberry Muffin Cookies

Cookie Ingredients

1 1/2 cups flour

½ cup cake flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

1/2 cup butter, softened

1 cup sugar

1 egg

1/3 cup milk

1 teaspoon orange extract

2 teaspoon mixed peel (or orange zest)

1 cup dried cranberries

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Topping ingredients  

¼ cup flour

¼ cup turbinado sugar

2 tablespoons butter

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Directions

In a small bowl, combine topping ingredients. Set aside until you are ready to use.

Combine flours, baking powder, and sea salt in a bowl, set aside.

In a bowl cream together butter and sugar. Add in egg and beat until combined. Add milk, and orange extract.

Slowly add dry ingredients into the wet ingredients, and mix until combined. Gently fold in mixed peel and cranberries.

Refrigerate the dough for at least one hour.
Once chilled, scoop out large balls, placing at least an inch apart on your prepared baking tray. Top with prepared topping .

Bake for 15 minutes, at 325.

Allow to cool on baking sheet for at least 5 minutes, before transferring to a wire rack.

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