The Baker Upstairs

8.13.2020

Cheddar Zucchini Biscuits

Yum
These tender and flavorful cheddar zucchini biscuits are so delicious, and quick and easy to make!
These tender and flavorful cheddar zucchini biscuits are so delicious, and quick and easy to make!

Does your family love zucchini as much as mine does? I would say it's right up there with broccoli as one of our favorite vegetables. My kids actually used to turn their noses up at zucchini, but when we started growing zucchini in our garden, they became totally hooked on it. Now that it's zucchini season, they love looking outside every day at our blossoming plants, and watching our zucchini grow. We've already had around a dozen ripe zucchini this year, and we have several more in various stages of development. Usually we just sauté them with a little olive oil and salt and pepper, but I've been trying out some new zucchini recipes lately that I'm excited to share with you. First up: these delicious and cheesy cheddar zucchini biscuits!
These tender and flavorful cheddar zucchini biscuits are so delicious, and quick and easy to make!
I'm always a fan of biscuits, but during this pregnancy I haven't been able to get enough of them. They're quick and easy to make, and perfect for those nights when I need some homemade bread but don't have the energy to spend all afternoon baking. I thought it would be fun to throw some zucchini into one of my favorite biscuit recipes, and it was a great idea! They came out so tender and flavorful, and even though the zucchini flavor is pretty subtle, I think it adds a lot to the texture and makes them even more delicious. These drop biscuits are so quick to make, and I love that I can have a batch in the oven in less than fifteen minutes.
These tender and flavorful cheddar zucchini biscuits are so delicious, and quick and easy to make!
These cheddar zucchini biscuits actually freeze really well, so I have been making a double batch and then freezing half of them for another day. To reheat them, I put them on a baking sheet in a cold oven, turn the oven on to 350, and bake them 15-20 minutes, until they're warmed through. They taste just as delicious as fresh biscuits!
Cheddar Zucchini Biscuits

2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon garlic powder, divided
1/2 cup cold butter, divided
1 1/4 cups shredded cheddar cheese, divided
1 small zucchini, grated (about 1 1/2 cups)
3/4 cup buttermilk
1 teaspoon dried parsley

Preheat the oven to 400 and line a baking sheet with parchment or silicone. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, and 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder. Grate 6 tablespoons of butter into the dry ingredients, add 1 cup of the cheese and the zucchini, and toss to combine. Pour in the buttermilk and mix until just combined. Using an ice cream scoop, scoop large spoonfuls of the dough onto the prepared baking sheet. Sprinkle the remaining cheddar cheese over the top of the biscuits. Bake 14-16 minutes, or until lightly browned. While the biscuits are baking, melt the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter in a microwave safe bowl. Whisk in the remaining 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder and parsley. Brush the butter mixture over the biscuits. Serve warm and enjoy!
These tender and flavorful cheddar zucchini biscuits are so delicious, and quick and easy to make!

8.10.2020

S'mores Cookie Cake

Yum
This decadent and delicious s'mores cookie cake is so easy to make!
This decadent and delicious s'mores cookie cake is so easy to make!

Okay, I know I'm down to the wire at this point, but technically it's still National S'mores Day, so how about a delicious s'mores dessert? This s'mores cookie cake is the perfect way to satisfy your s'mores cravings, but in cookie form! I started with my favorite chocolate chip cookie cake recipe, then added tons of s'mores flavor with crushed graham crackers, gooey chocolate, and sweet toasted marshmallows.  The result is an over-the-top decadent and completely delicious dessert! 
This decadent and delicious s'mores cookie cake is so easy to make!
I made this for my thirteen year old to take to a social-distancing sleepover with her two best friends last weekend, and it was a big hit! The way it works is that each girl sleeps in her own tent, spaced about ten feet apart in the backyard, and they all wear masks when they're outside their tents and stay six feet apart. It's a fun way for her to reconnect with her friends, whom she has missed dearly, and they've done it twice now successfully. We're still being very careful about social distancing, with my husband working in healthcare and a new baby on the way, but I'm glad that we're finding creative ways to socialize and stay in touch with friends. I wrapped slices of the s'mores cake up individually for each girl, and they all went crazy for it!
This decadent and delicious s'mores cookie cake is so easy to make!

This cake is best on the day it's made, but the leftovers are pretty delicious warmed up in the microwave for 15-20 seconds, especially with a scoop of ice cream on the side. The combination of flavors in this cake is totally fantastic, and I love that it's so easy to make! 

S'mores Cookie Cake

12 tablespoons butter, softened
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup sugar
1 egg + 1 egg yolk
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 1/4 cups flour
3/4 cup crushed graham cracker crumbs
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup chocolate chips
1 1/4 cups chopped Hershey Bars, divided
12 large marshmallows, cut in half lengthwise (or 1 cup mini marshmallows)

Preheat the oven to 350. Grease a 10 inch quiche pan or springform pan and set aside. In a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, beat together the butter, brown sugar, and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the egg, egg yolk, and vanilla, and mix until combined. Add the flour, corn starch, baking soda, and salt, and mix until just combined, being careful not to over-mix. Gently fold in the graham cracker crumbs, chocolate chips, and 3/4 cup of the Hershey bars. Press the batter into the prepared pan in an even layer. Bake 20-22 minutes, or until light golden brown. Remove the pan from the oven and preheat the broiler. Sprinkle the marshmallows evenly over the top of the cake, then sprinkle the remaining Hershey bars over the top. Broil 3-4 minutes, until the marshmallows are golden brown and toasted. Let cool before serving.
This decadent and delicious s'mores cookie cake is so easy to make!

7.15.2020

Simple and Delicious Roast Chicken

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This simple and delicious roast chicken is so easy to make, and so tender and flavorful!

This simple and delicious roast chicken is so easy to make, and so tender and flavorful!

Okay, I know I posted before about how I haven't had the energy for cooking elaborate meals lately, but sometimes a girl just needs a delicious roast chicken, you know? Luckily, this roast chicken is super simple and easy to make, with almost no hands on time. I've always been intimidated by the thought of roasting a chicken before, but it really is much simpler and more straightforward than I had previously thought. It's actually pretty doable, even on a busy night. It does take a little time to cook, but it couldn't be simpler to make. Just rub the chicken with a spice rub, sprinkle a little butter on top, and throw it in the oven until it's golden brown and delicious. It doesn't get easier than that!

This simple and delicious roast chicken is so easy to make, and so tender and flavorful!

This chicken is super delicious by itself, but it's also great to use in any recipe calling for rotisserie chicken. The spice rub gives the chicken a delicious but still subtle flavor, which makes it great for adding to other recipes. We ate about half of this chicken the first night with mashed potatoes and roasted carrots on the side, and then I used the remaining chicken to make this delicious cheesy chicken and broccoli pasta later in the week. I love a meal that does double duty!

This simple and delicious roast chicken is so easy to make, and so tender and flavorful!
 
Simple and Delicious Roast Chicken

1 whole chicken, neck and giblets removed
2 teaspoons brown sugar
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
2 tablespoons butter, cut into pieces

Preheat the oven to 375. In a small bowl, whisk together the brown sugar, salt, pepper, garic powder, and smoked paprika. Sprinkle the spice mixture over the skin of the chicken, rubbing gently to work it into the skin. Place the chicken in a heavy dutch oven. Sprinkle the butter pieces over the top of the chicken. Place the lid on the pot and cook in the preheated oven for 1 hour. Remove the lid from the pot and cook for an additional 30 minutes, until the skin is crispy and brown and the temperature in the thickest part of the thigh is 165. Remove from the oven and let sit for 15 minutes before carving and serving.

This simple and delicious roast chicken is so easy to make, and so tender and flavorful!