white chocolate chip macadamia nut cookies

white chocolate mac nut cookies 14

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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zucchini bread

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sometimes during the summer, we get a variety of free vegetables from the agriculture department on campus (i think that’s where it comes from?).  there is usually zucchini, summer squash, eggplant, tomatoes, corn, etc.  it is amazing!

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i usually enjoy zucchini sauteed in a little olive oil and garlic with some salt and pepper – the perfect summer side dish.  but i was instead craving something sweet, and decided to make some zucchini bread with my free zucchini.

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a quick google search directed me to what sounded like the best zucchini bread in the world from smitten kitchen.  i love smitten kitchen, so i was confident that it would be a winner.

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of course, the recipe was absolutely perfect and resulted in delicious zucchini bread.  i just love all of the warm spices that are highlighted in this quick bread, plus aren’t the little green specks just beautiful.  love it!

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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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individual banana pudding cups

banana pudding cups 11a while back, chris asked me to make some treats for his coworkers.  since i make a lot of treats for mine, i didn’t hesistate for a second saying “of course!”  now the fun part – what should i make?  my coworkers expect me to bring cupcakes, so making treats for chris is a good opportunity for me to try out different recipes.  i definitely have made cupcakes for him before, but i’ve also made blueberry crumb bars as well as these individual banana pudding cups.
banana pudding cups 12i absolutely love banana pudding and thought it would be a nice, cool treat for chris to share with his coworkers.  but it’s not so portable and would be a mess to serve to a crowd.  so i thought of making them into little individual serving cups.  they worked out perfectly!  chris was able to easily transport them on the metro and he reported back that they were easy to serve and share.  success!

banana pudding cups 13don’t you love those beautiful layers?  i just think they are so pretty.  these individual banana pudding cups would make the perfect summer time treat.  i used my light banana pudding recipe, which is not as heavy and decadent as regular banana pudding.  so they would be nice and refreshing on a warm, sunny day.  i hope you give them a try!

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cinnamon toast crunch cupcakes

cinnamon toast crunch cupcakes 12one of my coworkers is super talented and makes all kind of fun cupcakes.  she made these and posted a picture on instagram and i was immediately intrigued.  i knew i had to give them a try as soon as possible.

cinnamon toast crunch cupcakes 10so for birthday treats a few months back, i made these cinnamon toast crunch cupcakes.  i love how they incorporate and highlight one of my favorite childhood cereals.  plus cinnamon and sugar is such a classic combination – how could you go wrong.

cinnamon toast crunch cupcakes 13this is a cinnamon sugar swirl cupcake, topped with cinnamon toast crunch cream cheese frosting.  i mean, common!  for the cinnamon sugar swirl cupcake, i used the same cupcake base as my snickerdoodle cupcake.

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