Gluten-Free Chewy Apple Pie Bars

20190108_174442Hello everyone! To all of my followers, I know it’s been a long time since you’ve heard from me. I’ve been extremely busy this past year with the creation of my new small business & it has unfortunately kept me from doing any content for this website. Thankfully, now that I’ve gotten into a rhythm in my business, I’m back to share content with you once again.

I will admit my content going forward will have a slight shift in focus. I will still be posting up baked goods as always, however they will be more nutritious in nature. As my life has changed to a healthier lifestyle, this website will have to change along with it. I hope you will all enjoy what is to come. I’m extremely excited to be back & I hope to expand this website even larger in the future…so stay tuned!

20190108_174231For my first post back, I’m sharing with you the first healthy snack bar I ever created. The story behind this recipe coincides with the beginning of my journey to losing fat & getting healthier. At the time I started my journey, I did not have the finances to buy all of the fancy snack bars you find in health food stores, so what I did was I created my own from home. Later I would come to find out, as I became more educated in nutrition, that I wasn’t just saving money, I was also avoiding a lot of harmful ingredients that get hidden in processed health food products. So if you want to enjoy healthy snacks, even if you’re not on a budget, the best way to go is make them yourself.

20190108_174413These chewy apple pie bars are the perfect make & take snack. They are freezable, gluten-free, vegetarian, & come together quickly. Taking only about 10 minutes of prep time, you can pop one in your lunch box or gym bag for a sweet snack on the go in no time. When you arm yourself with nutritious snacks, you can always keep hunger at bay!

Chewy Apple Pie Snack Bars

*Makes 12 Bars

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup Pitted Dates
  • 1 cup Unsweetened Dried Apple Slices
  • 1 cup Unsalted Walnuts
  • 1 tsp. Ground Cinnamon
  • ½ tsp. Ground Ginger
  • ¼ tsp. Ground Nutmeg

 

Preparation:

  1. Line a 4 x 8 inch pan with parchment paper. Set aside.
  2. In a large food processor, combine the dates, apples, and walnuts. Process until a fine crumbs form, about 1 minute. Add the cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg. Continue to process until mixture is very soft and easily holds together when pinched, about 3 to 4 minutes.
  3. Press dough into prepared pan. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, or until firm. Cut into 12 snack size bars (2 x 1¼ in. each). Wrap each bar individually and keep refrigerated (5 days) or freeze (1 month).

 

Nutrients Per Serving: 1 Bar

Calories: 119, Protein: 2 g.,

Total Fat: 6 g., Sat. Fat: 0.5 g.,

Fiber: 16 g., Sodium: 23 mg.,

Sugars: 12 g., Carbs: 16 g.,

Cholesterol: 0 mg

 

RECIPE ADAPTED FROM: C. LYONS
PHOTOGRAPHY & STAGING: PETER MENDOROS

ALL REMAINING CONTENT © HONEYBEES PATISSERIE 2019

 

 

Chewy Chocolate Cookies

 

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Happy Independence Day to all of the Americans viewing the blog. I hope you are getting your fill of BBQ’s and Fireworks. I will be hitting up Walt Disney World tomorrow for my little one’s first visit to the parks which should be interesting but fun. I’m super excited because I have not been to Disney since January, which was about 1 week before my daughter was born. I know it will be crowded but well worth the experience, not to mention my desire to try the All American Apple Pie inspired Cupcake that is on sale for a limited time as part of Disney’s limited time magic for the 4th of July spectacular.

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Now I know what you are all thinking. Where is the Independence day post with all this talk of it? Sure many websites out there have a patriotic theme with everything having to incorporate some Red, White, & Blue…BUT… here at Honeybee’s we are a little unconventional and decided to go against the grain with an everyday treat themed post. In my defense however, I did also make Mini Cherry Cheesecakes which at least have Red and White but they were devoured before a single picture could be snapped.

The decision for this post…simply put…. is a result of my mad craving for chocolate of late. As much of a blessing as they are, there really is only so many little weight watcher 1 point chocolates I can eat before I crave something more fulfilling and naughty. I wanted a “Death by Chocolate” style of cookie with chewy texture. Simple right. Not too much to ask is it??? WRONG!!!

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Problem is, these two simple sounding requests never seem to go hand in hand with each other because the more chocolate that goes in, the more texture gets murdered.  It is a result of science and how ingredients interact with each other in the baking process which I won’t go into details and bore the heck out of you. Instead I will give you just a few bullet points so you can have a briefing on the matter and maybe apply it to other recipes of your own in the future. This will be brief and painless I promise. My boyfriend is a born and raised New Yorker and taught me the importance of the New York minute so I won’t keep you from the goods for long I just want to set you up with the best possible final product with a few pointers 😉

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Step one to the perfect chewy chocolate cookie is the chocolate itself… so be sure to buy a good quality baking chocolate. I personally enjoy Ghiradelli’s Dark Chocolate but a 2nd fave is Callebaut Intense Dark. Of course any dark, bittersweet or semisweet chocolate will work but the chocolate intensity may suffer a tad bit. When working with the chocolate you ultimately select, be sure to chip it into the right size chunks. If too small, the chocolate will melt and disappear into the dough when baked causing your “death by chocolate” bits to go unnoticed. Be sure to make the chunks about ½ inch so that they remain intact while baking and contribute bursts of chocolate flavor.

Step two involves achieving the chewy texture. First things first… take out that egg yolk. Using just the white eliminates extra fat egg yolks provide that would not only have gone to your waistline, but also have created a tender cake or brownie-like texture instead of chewy. Alteration #2 involves once again the chocolate. Instead of using melted chocolate, this formula uses cocoa powder which adds chocolate flavor without adding tenderness to the cookie, allowing the chewy texture to shine through. Lastly, the amount of white sugar needs to be lessened greatly. By replacing some white sugar with dark brown sugar and dark corn syrup the chewiness is boosted much like molasses does to a gingerbread cookie, without giving an off taste that would distract from the chocolate. If you don’t have dark brown sugar or dark corn syrup on hand you can substitute light for both with a little suffering in flavor and texture.

Oh and one final tip before I send you off to baking and myself to dreamland… use a spring-loaded ice cream scoop to perfectly portion your cookies. I use a size #30.

Note: Formula yields 16 cookies.

 

Chewy Chocolate Cookies

 

Ingredients:

  • 2 ½ oz. (1/3 cup) Granulated Sugar; an additional ½ cup for finished coating
  • 7 ½ oz. (1 ½ cups) All-Purpose Flour; unbleached
  • 3 oz. (¾ cup) Cocoa Powder; Dutch-Processed
  • ½ tsp. Baking Soda
  • ¼ tsp. Salt
  • ½ cup Dark Corn Syrup
  • 1 Egg White; Large
  • 1 tsp. Vanilla Extract
  • 12 tbsp. (1 ½ sticks) Unsalted Butter; softened
  • 2 ½ oz. (1/3 cup) Dark Brown Sugar; packed
  • 4 oz. Bittersweet Chocolate; chopped into ½ in. pieces

 

Formula:

  1. Adjust oven racks to upper and lower middle positions. Heat oven to 375°. Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper. Place ½ cup granulated sugar in a shallow dish and set aside. Mix flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt together in a medium size bowl. Whisk corn syrup, egg white, and vanilla together in a small bowl.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter, brown sugar, and remaining 1/3 cup granulated sugar at medium-high speed until light and fluffy, approximately 2 minutes. Reduce the speed to medium-low and add the corn syrup mixture. Beat until syrup mixture is fully incorporated, scraping down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula. With mixer running on low, add the flour mixture and chopped chocolate. Mix until just incorporated, again scraping down the sides of the bowl. Gently stir the dough with the rubber spatula to ensure no pockets of flour remain at the bottom and the chocolate chunks are evenly distributed. Chill the dough for 30 minutes until slightly firm. Be sure not to allow the dough to chill longer than 30 minutes.
  3. Divide the dough into 16 equal portions. Roll portions between your hands to form a ball about 1 ½ inches in diameter. Working in batches, drop 8 dough balls into the dish of sugar and toss to coat. Place dough balls on the prepared baking sheet about 2 inches apart. Repeat with the second batch of 8. Bake cookies for about 10 minutes or until the edges are set but the centers are still soft. Centers will be puffed and cracked but still appear wet and raw between the fissures. Don’t fear that they are underdone. This will cause the perfectly moist, chewy textured cookie. Be sure not to overbake!!!
  4. Cool the cookies on the baking sheets for 5 minutes, then remove with a metal spatula and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

 

SPECIAL THANKS TO:

 

PETER MENDOROS – PHOTOGRAPHY  

RECIPE ADAPTED FROM YVONNE RUPERTI

 

 

 

ALL REMAINING CONTENT © HONEYBEE’S PATISSERIE 2013

Skinny Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

dsc_0265As month two of 2013 comes to a close I am reminded of my new year’s resolution to shed a few pounds. This made me wonder how many others who made the same popular choice to lose weight this year actually stuck with their goal. One hurdle I always face is my craving for sweets, usually something involving chocolate. This post doesn’t involve chocolate but does involve a baked good that is commonly mistaken as being somewhat healthier than other options. The Oatmeal Raisin Cookie is often confused as being naturally the most nutritious cookie out there but this is far from true. In fact, some cookies can have as much as 400 calories and 13 grams of fat per cookie. There are many offerings out there that claim they are low-fat or low-calorie and don’t lose the original taste of the full fat/calorie Oatmeal Raisin Cookies but those are for lack of a better word… lies. They often replace butter and sugar with healthier add ins like applesauce or non-fat sour cream, which create nothing but a tough, flavorless, and visually unappealing cookie.

dsc_0251To make a truly healthier version that will retain its color, flavor, and texture, therefore making it actually disappear from the cookie jar rather than sit untouched, a little bit of fat needs to remain. By cutting the butter and browning what remains in the formula, the flavor intensifies as the nuttiness of the butter becomes more pronounced. Unfortunately by cutting fat you lose the texture that it brought to the oats. In a full fat cookie, the oats become tender flavorful bits that still retain a hint of chew. In a low-fat version, they become tough and leathery, barely cooking at all. To prevent this usual pitfall of a low-fat version, the formula toasts the oats in the butter that is browned. This way, in one step two problems are solved.

3Now for the final problem which revolves around sugar content. To reduce fat further, one would think to cut as much sugar as possible. However, when you cut out even a bit of the sugar, you lose not only sweetness but moisture. Moisture that is crucial to the texture of the cookie. To resolve the final problem, an unusual but simple step is done… take a portion of the raisins, chop them and boil in water until a smooth paste forms. By adding this raisin paste to the cookie dough, the cookies remain moist and chewy despite having a dramatic cut in sugar. In fact, the added raisin pulp created a caramel undertone that enhanced the raisin flavor to even better levels than a full fat cookie.

1When all the tricks of the trade have been applied to a traditional Oatmeal Raisin Cookie formula, the result is a dramatic difference in calories, fat, and saturated fat per cookie. A traditional cookie contains 370 calories, 13 grams of fat, with 9 grams being saturated fat. This Skinny cookie contains only 150 calories, 3.5 grams of fat, with 2 grams being saturated fat. Now you can eat an Oatmeal Raisin cookie without all the guilt.

dsc_0268Note: This formula makes about 20 cookies. The cooked and cooled cookies can be stored in a container at room temperature for about 3 days.

Skinny Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup Raisins; ½ cup chopped fine, ½ cup left whole
  • ¾ Water
  • 6 tbsp. Unsalted Butter
  • 1 ¾ cups Old-Fashioned Oats
  • 1 ½ tsp. Ground Cinnamon (I use a blend of sweet China, rich Vietnamese, Ceylon, & Korintje)
  • 1 cup Flour
  • ¼ tsp. Baking Powder
  • ¼ tsp. Baking Soda
  • ½ tsp. Salt
  • 1 ½ cups Light Brown Sugar, packed
  • 1 Egg
  • 2 tsp. Vanilla Extract

Formula:

  1. Adjust oven racks to upper-middle and lower-middle positions and preheat to 350°. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Combine the chopped raisins and water in a small saucepan and place over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce heat to low and simmer until the water has evaporated and the raisins are plump, about 15 minutes. Let cool.
  2. Meanwhile, melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the oats and cook, stirring constantly, until just golden, about 5 minutes. Add the cinnamon and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Let cool.
  3. Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a bowl. In a large bowl, whisk the sugar, egg, and vanilla until smooth. Stir in all the raisins, the toasted oats, and the flour mixture until just combined.
  4. Roll 2 tbsp. of dough into 1 ½ inch round balls and place 2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheets. Gently press each dough ball down until it is about ½ in. thick. Bake cookies until the edges are a light golden brown and the centers are just set, about 13 to 16 minutes, rotating baking sheets halfway through the baking time. Cool 10 minutes on the baking sheets then transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool completely. Enjoy warm or at room temperature.

2SPECIAL THANKS TO:

 

PETER MENDOROS – PHOTOGRAPHY  

RECIPE ADAPTED FROM KRIS WIDICAN

ALL REMAINING CONTENT © HONEYBEE’S PATISSERIE 2013

Hazelnut Kahlua Chews

Now that the holidays are approaching the shopping fever is beginning. What also begins is the hunt for the perfect Holiday Cookies to serve at both Thanksgiving and Christmas. Now I am a bit of a conservative traditionalist and Thanksgiving always has to have that Pumpkin or Pecan Pie and Christmas always must have its Sugar Cookies cut into fun holiday shapes but I also like to always add one new element to the table. A little bit of a mix between old traditional favorites you look forward to every year and a new and exciting thing to try to spice up the look of the table and cause some fun discussions. So for the next few weeks I will be testing some cookies. I’ll be sure to throw in some other items, like a cake I have in find, however it will still be inspired by a famous Christmas cookie 😉

So I introduce to you the first cookie on the hunt for 2012’s Most Interesting Holiday Cookies… The Hazelnut Kahlua Chew. This cookie is loaded with all the goodies…. Nutella, Alcohol, Sugar. What better way to satisfy all your holiday cravings in one bite size on the go cookie. And not to mention Nutella is trending at the moment and with good reason. It’s rich blend of hazelnut and chocolate makes it a snap to add both amazingly compatible flavors to just about anything you can think of.  Top that trendy pairing off with a dash of coffee flavored liquor that never goes out of style and you got yourself the perfect cookie addition that makes you psychologically believe you’re boozing up, a popular way to pass the stressful holiday season and caffeinating yourself for the long days ahead without having to stop at McD’s for a cup of Joe. This bite size confection is incredibly delicious, spectacularly simple, and way too easy to snatch along for the ride throughout all your holiday travels.

A few notes before I send you off to baking. Although I love the flavor the Kahlua adds to the cookies and wouldn’t recommend deleting its presence from the formula, I do understand people have their own preferences regarding alcohol. Either they do not like alcohol or do not like the thought of it in a cookie that kids may eat, despite the fact that all alcohol is burned off in baking. With those individuals in mind, you can substitute 1 tsp. of Instant Espresso powder for the Kahlua. That way, you still retain the coffee flavor and the benefits coffee flavors have on blooming and defining the flavors of chocolate already present. For those that may not be familiar with the Nutella craze, Nutella is a chocolate-hazelnut spread with a texture much like that of peanut butter. It is conveniently sold in most supermarkets in the peanut butter aisle. You will need one jar for this formula. The formula makes 3 ½ dozen cookies.

 

 

Hazelnut Kahlua Chews

 

 

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups All-Purpose Flour
  • 2 tsp. Baking Powder
  • ½ tsp. Salt
  • 1 ¼ cups Nutella Spread
  • 4 tbsp. Unsalted Butter, softened
  • 1 1/3 cups Sugar
  • 1 tsp. Vanilla Extract
  • 1 tsp. Kahlua or Coffee flavored liquor
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1/3 cup Milk
  • 1 ½ cups Hazelnuts, toasted & chopped fine
  • 1 cup Confectioners’ Sugar

 

Formula:

  1. Adjust oven racks to the upper-middle and lower-middle positions. Heat oven to 375°. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Combine flour, baking powder, and salt together in a bowl. Using an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the Nutella, butter, and sugar on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add the vanilla, Kahlua, and eggs and mix until incorporated. Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the flour mixture and milk, mixing until just combined. Fold in ½ cup hazelnuts and refrigerate the dough until firm, about 1 hour.
  2. Place the remaining hazelnuts in a bowl and the confectioners’ sugar in another bowl. Once dough has chilled, remove from the refrigerator and roll the dough into 1 inch balls. Working with one ball at a time, roll in the hazelnuts and then in the confectioners’ sugar. Place the balls 2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheets. Bake until the cookies are set and a little cracked on the surface, about 8 minutes, making sure to rotate the pans halfway through the cooking time. Cool 5 minutes on the warm pans and then transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool completely. Repeat with the remaining dough.

 

 

 

 

 

SPECIAL THANKS TO:

 

PETER MENDOROS – PHOTOGRAPHY  

RECIPE ADAPTED FROM JENNIFER PARKS

 

ALL REMAINING CONTENT © HONEYBEE’S PATISSERIE 2012