Chocolate Almond Sweet Rolls

Chocolate Almond Sweet Rolls

Hey hey, we’re making sweet rolls today.

Of the almond kind.

Of the CHOCOLATE almond kind.

That’s right, your morning cereal just got a new competitor. I’m no psychic, but, I’m pretty sure I know whose gonna win the competition.

It’s definitely the cereal.

NOT. Please don’t say you thought I was serious there.

Chocolate Almond Sweet Rolls

What’s the deal with sweet rolls? Well, picture a cinnamon roll with all that soft, fluffy, yeasty, buttery dough, but without the cinnamon filling. Instead it’s jam-packed with an almond filling that has just a hint of chocolate flavor.  So, it’s a cinnamon roll without the cinnamon. A sweet roll, if you will.

I’m not gonna be picky here. Call it what you want.

Cinnamon roll. Sweet roll. Get in my belly roll.

Just know, it’s chocolate + almond + yeasty dough.

And, you’re going to want to eat all of it. Well, if you like almond that is. These guys have a whole tube of almond paste inside them. Wait, whattt? Yup, you read that right. A whole 7 oz tube. These rolls are for the almond lovers of the world.

You are so welcome.

Chocolate Almond Sweet Rolls

Here’s where I tell you my favorite part about these rolls.

When I got up in the morning all I had to do was take the prepped rolls out of the fridge, heat the oven, and bake them. How easy does that sound? I did all of that before having a single drop of coffee.That’s an epic win. No one wants to wake up early and wait for the dough to rise before being able to face plant into a fresh sweet roll.

No one. And, if you are that someone, well, you deserve some sort of award then.

But, if you like your sleep and your sweet rolls too, prepare these the night before and let them sit in the fridge.

Chocolate Almond Sweet Rolls

Your rested brain will thank you.

Your stomach will thank you.

Heck, the next door neighbor will thank you for that bakery smell that’s floating in the air. They’ll also want a sweet roll.

Maybe it’s best to keep the door closed then. You don’t reallly want to have to share. Right?

Chocolate Almond Sweet Rolls

I kind of lied to you. There’s one more step you have to do in the morning: the chocolate glaze.

THE. CHOCOLATE. GLAZE.

Okay, okay, hang on. It’s super easy and quick to make. Andddd, can we really count anything made with chocolate as work?

No, no, we can’t.

Or, we can.

But, it’s a small price to pay. A tiny miniscule price.

I mean, naked sweet rolls are good too. Just look at them. All golden brown and puffed up.

Chocolate Almond Sweet Rolls

But, now, look at this chocolate glazed one.

Chocolate Almond Sweet Rolls

That’s right my wonderful friends.

Making chocolate glaze will ALWAYS be worth it.

AMIRIGHT?

Yeah, I’m so right.

Chocolate Almond Sweet Rolls
Recipe adapted from Crazy for Crust
Yields: 9 large rolls

Ingredients:
Dough
2 1/4 teaspoons (or 1 package) active dry yeast
3/4 cup milk (I used 2%)
1/3 cup & 1/2 teaspoons sugar, divided
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 egg
3 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting

Almond Filling
1 (7 oz.) tube of almond paste
1/3 cup sugar
1 to 2 teaspoons cocoa powder
1 egg

Chocolate Glaze
4 oz. semi-sweet chocolate, roughly chopped
1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
1 tablespoon light corn syrup
slivered almonds, optional

Directions:
Dough
Heat up milk for 35-45 in a microwave safe cup, until it’s about 120 degrees (think hot bathwater when feeling it if you don’t have a thermometer). Stir in yeast and 1/2 teaspoon sugar. Let sit for a few minutes to proof–if bubbles form on the top of the mixture that means your yeast is active!
In the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, mix 1/3 cup sugar, butter, salt, and egg until butter is evenly distributed–the mixture may be chunky. Stir in yeast/milk mixture until incorporated. Add flour and stir with the paddle attachment just until mixture sticks to the paddle. Switch the paddle out with the dough hook and continue mixing on low until dough forms into a ball in the center of the bowl. The dough should be slightly sticky and in one piece. If the dough is really wet and sticking all over your fingers, add up to 1/2 cup more flour (adding 1/4 cup at a time) until dough is easy to work with.
Spray a large bowl with cooking spray and place dough ball in it, making sure to coat the top of the dough lightly with cooking spray. Cover with plastic wrap and let sit in a warm place for 1-2 hours until it doubles in size (I like to preheat the oven, turn it off, and then place the bowl inside the oven to rise).

Almond Filling
Once the dough has risen, make the filling. In a food processor, combine almond paste, cocoa powder, sugar, and egg until smooth and creamy. Set aside.

Assembling Sweet Rolls
On a lightly floured surface, roll out dough into a 10×14-inch rectangle. Spread almond filling on the dough and tightly roll it up. Using a serrated or sharp knife, cut the dough into 9 large sweet rolls–the almond filling will stick to the knife, so wipe it off as you go for a cleaner cut. Spray a 9-inch square pan with cooking spray and place the rolls gently in the pan.
Let the dough rise for 30 minutes OR cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight (in the morning let rolls come to room temperature while the oven is preheating).
Bake rolls at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown on the top. Let sweet rolls cool before icing.

Chocolate Glaze
While the sweet rolls are cooling, make your glaze. Place chopped chocolate in a small bowl. Set aside.
Using a small saucepan heat up heavy cream until simmering. Pour hot cream over chopped chocolate and allow to sit for about 5 minutes. Add corn syrup and whisk until well combined.
Drizzle the tops of the sweet rolls with chocolate glaze and sprinkle with slivered almonds.

 

Chocolate Almond Sweet Rolls

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Toasted Coconut Mocha Cheesecake Cookies

Toasted Coconut Mocha Cheesecake Cookies
Hey, serious question time.

Out of all the smells on earth, which is your absolute favorite?

I know, this is kind of personal for a Wednesday, but I feel like we’ve reached that level in our friendship.

And, also, I can’t decide for myself.

I’ve been over the question, in my head, mostly, for the past few days and I can’t settle on one answer. There is too many smells that I love. Seriously, though, like the Juicy perfume I wear, or fresh laundry, or Thanksgiving dinner, or that manly man smell—you know the one I’m talking about—or baby smell, or even the smell when you open a brand new book. How is one supposed to settle on a favorite?

Toasted Coconut Mocha Cheesecake Cookies

You just can’t. It’s impossible. Or, I should say, it’s impossible for me.

What I can do though, is settle on two. I can’t tell you which is first or second, but I can tell you, without hesitation, these are my absolute favorite smells on earth. PERIOD.

You ready?

My two favorite smells are….

Toasted Coconut Mocha Cheesecake Cookies

Freshly brewed pot of coffee AND cookies baking in the oven.

I know, kind of predictable considering I consume rant about coffee more than your average person, and have a baking blog that quite often features cookies. But, it’s the truth, predictable or not. Those two smells are absolute heaven to me. Really, they need to be bottled and sold. Don’t you agree?

I’d buy it in bulk. And then I’d send you a bottle of each. Okay, fine, two. But, only because I like you.

The problem is, like I said, I can’t narrow it down to one smell.

I just can’t. 

Or, can I?

Toasted Coconut Mocha Cheesecake Cookies

Oh hi Toasted Coconut Mocha Cheesecake Cookies.

What’s that you say? You have coffee in you? And when you bake you leave a faint smell of coffee in the air?

Oh my. How wonderful.

Toasted Coconut Mocha Cheesecake Cookies

Toasted coconut shreds, mini chocolate chips, and coconut coffee grinds all combined into a soft and doughy cookie. Oh, and I stuffed the cookies with coffee cheesecake, because…well, because why not?

It’s coffee + cookie + coconut + cheesecake. 

I mean, get in my belly, right?

Toasted Coconut Mocha Cheesecake Cookies
Yields: about 21 cookies

Ingredients:
Toasted Coconut Mocha Cookies
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 3/4 teaspoon fine or coarse coffee grounds, coconut or mocha or coconut mocha flavored
3/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
3/4 cup dark brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 egg + 1 egg yolk
1/4 teaspoon coconut extract
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup sweetened coconut shreds, toasted
1/2 cup mini semi-sweet chocolate chips

Mocha Cheesecake Filling
4 oz cream cheese, softened to room temperature
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 (.07 oz) packet instant coffee dissolved in 1 tablespoon water

Directions:
Toasted Coconut Mocha Cookies
In a large bowl combine flour, cornstarch, baking soda,salt, and coffee grinds. Set aside.
In a medium-sized bowl whisk together melted butter and sugars until no clumps remain. Whisk in the egg, and then the egg yolk. Add coconut and vanilla extracts, whisking until incorporated.
Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix together with a rubber spatula until just combined. The dough will be soft, but very thick to work with. Using the spatula fold in the toasted coconut shreds and the mini chocolate chips. Cover the dough and let chill for at least 2 hours, or up to 3 days–I let mine sit overnight.

Mocha Cheesecake Filling
While the cookie dough is chilling, make the mocha cheesecake filling. Using a mixer combine cream cheese, powdered sugar, and 1/2 of the instant coffee mixture. Mix until smooth–it’ll have the consistency of a no-bake cheesecake. Place bowl in the freezer and freeze for at least 3 hours–I let mine sit overnight.

Assembling the Cookies
Once dough and cheesecake filling have chilled, start assembling the cookies. Roll about a tablespoon and half of cookie dough into a ball. Make a deep thumbprint in the middle of each dough ball, sort of like a well. Place a teaspoon of the coffee cheesecake in the center of the well and fold the edges of the dough over, using your fingers to enclose the cheesecake in the dough ball. Bake cookies for 11-12 minutes–the cookies will look soft and underbaked. Allow cookies to cool on the cookie sheet for 10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.

NOTE: I had extra coffee cheesecake, which I dipped these cookies into and ate, but if you don’t want extra, I suggest cutting the cheesecake portion in half.

Cookie Dough recipe adapted from this chocolate chip cookie recipe.

 

Wait, don’t think I forgot, I told you my favorite smells and now it’s your turn to share. That’s how this friendship thing works. I think.

Toasted Coconut Mocha Cheesecake Cookies

No-Bake Nutella Cheesecake with a Peanut Butter Cookie Crust

No-bake Nutella Cheesecake

Umm, guys, I can’t stop eating dreaming  wanting nutella. Well, nutella and peanut butter that is. I can’t have one without the other. I use to just eat spoonfuls of peanut butter, and be perfectly happy, but now my peanut-butter-smothered spoon demands to be dunked into nutella. I don’t know if you’ve ever dealt with peanut butter smothered spoons, but they can be quite persuasive when they want to be. Real sweet talkers. You just can’t say no to them.

It could also be that I don’t want to say no. Fine, I’ll admit it. I’m a peanutbutternutellaaholic.

And, as a pbnaholic, I accept a few things to be true. The first being that peanut butter and nutella are having their moment and I shouldn’t try to stop them. The second thing is that I accept that my spoon will now have to be dunked in both creamy substances before I can eat it. And, lastly, I accept the fact that both my jar of peanut butter and nutella are cross contaminated with each other. Surprise surprise, I can’t really find it in me to be bothered by this fact either. Really, it means less mixing for me, which means, more spoonfuls finding their way into my mouth.

Tell me how that sounds like a problem?

Exactly, my wonderful friends, it doesn’t.

No-bake Nutella Cheesecake

I know, I know, I’m fashionably late to the nutella party. My bad. I just wasn’t into it before. At all. I didn’t even want to try it. How ridiculous of me, right? But, then I finally bought a jar, had a tentative spoonful, decided it needed some peanut butter, and the rest is history. Well, maybe not, considering I can’t forget it.

Like I can’t forget these Peanut Butter & Nutella Pastry Puffs I made last week.

Like I won’t forget to buy a new nutella jar at target.

Like I’ll never forget about this cheesecake.

No-bake Nutella Cheesecake

This cheesecake. I. LITERALLY. CAN’T. EVEN.

Let me explain.

A homemade peanut butter cookie crust. I won’t even deny the fact that I made peanut butter cookies for the sole purpose of crumbling them up and using them as a crust. Or, that I made three different batches of varying sizes (large, small, and mini) just so that I would have the perfect sized peanut butter cookie as a topping for my cheesecake. What, you don’t think that’s normal? Awkward.

The peanut butter cookie crust is then topped with the most decadent and velvety no-bake nutella cheesecake in the world. Two words here people: rich and nutellaly—let’s pretend that’s a real word. Can I say one more word? Creamy. So, so, creamy. The ricotta cheese is to thank for that one. Yes, you heard right, ricotta cheese. Funny story, I had intended to add mascarpone cheese to this cheesecake, but accidentally grabbed ricotta instead. I got distracted by samples at Trader Joe’s. Can you blame me? It turned out to be a glorious mistake anyways. And, then of course, there’s whipped cream and the {perfect sized} mini peanut butter cookie on top.

No-bake Nutella Cheesecake

I repeat, I. CAN’T. EVEN.

No-bake Nutella Cheesecake with a Peanut Butter Cookie Crust
Yields: 4 large servings

Ingredients:
20 mini (or, about 9 larger) peanut butter cookie crumbs (I used this cookie recipe)
2 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
2 (8 oz.) blocks of cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup powdered sugar, sifted
1 1/2 cups Nutella
4 to 5 tablespoons ricotta cheese (depending on texture and taste use more or less)
3/4 cup heavy cream
1-2 tablespoons sugar
1/2-1 teaspoon vanilla
whipped cream & mini peanut butter cookies, for garnish

Directions:
Combine melted butter and cookie crumbs, until just combined. Divide the crumb mixture equally between serving glasses, lightly pressing into the bottom of the glass. Set aside.
In the bowl of the stand mixer with whisk attachment whip heavy cream until stiff peaks form. Add sugar and vanilla, to taste, beating until just combined. Scrape into a separate bowl and set aside.
Using the same bowl you whipped the heavy cream in, beat the cream cheese until smooth. Mix in the powdered sugar, scraping the sides of the bowl as needed. Add nutella, mixing until incorporated, and then the ricotta cheese–add more or less depending on how velvety you want it. Using a spatula fold in the whipped cream mixture until just incorporate. Taste your cheesecake as you go and alter the taste for your preference, if you think its to rich add more whipped cream to lighten it up.
Spoon or pipe nutella cheesecake evenly into serving glasses, making sure to smooth the tops. Let chill for about two hours in the fridge.
Top cheesecakes with fresh whipped cream and a mini peanut butter cookie. Enjoy!

 

No-bake Nutella Cheesecake