Archive for the ‘Chocolate’ Category

I’ve tried all sorts of recipes in the last couple of weeks, some successful and some not. One big challenge is to make things that can be shipped.  Over Christmas I made some really good cookies and decided to make them again for this care package. I made Chewy Chocolate Cookies. I actually like these better than chocolate chip cookies. Using an ice cream scoop is the best away to get the perfect size cookie every time. I have three sizes and for cookies the medium one is perfect.

I’ve revived my interest in canning and started with my favorite flavor… chocolate. I made my mom’s Chocolate Sauce (recipe below), it can go over ice cream or cake or yogurt, or your sweetie for that matter….. I also made a Key Lime/Lemon Sauce. (I added key lime juice). I made Key Lime/Lemon Mini Bundt Cakes (recipe below) to go with this sauce. There are many cake recipes out there and some really good bundt cake cook books to check out. This time I used a little help from a box.


1 box lemon cake mix
1 3 oz. box instant lemon pudding
1 cup buttermilk
you will also need the eggs, oil and water mentioned on the cake mix box

In large bowl, mix thoroughly the dry cake mix and dry pudding mix. In another bowl, add wet ingredients listed on the cake mix box together with the buttermilk. Beat together with a hand mixer. Add to dry ingredients. Beat together 3 minutes. Bake in greased pan according to package directions of cake mix box.

NOTE: Because the buttermilk is added moisture, it will need a couple of minutes more to bake than the package directions call for…up to 5 minutes more to absorb the moisture. Just take a toothpick and poke in center of cake to test doneness.


1 cup white Karo syrup
2/3 cup cocoa powder
1 cup water
2 tbsp. butter
1 tsp. real vanilla
Combine all ingredients and simmer on stove top till blended and smooth. Can per basic canning instructions or refrigerate.


There are many sites on the web to teach you about canning. It’s important to follow the recommended procedure when you can anything.


Working on some fun packaging ideas….


Still working on remembering to take “good” pictures….

Cookie Ingredients

Chewy Chocolate Cookie Dough

Chewy Chocolate Cookies

Key Lime/Lemon Cake ingredients

Mini Bundt Cakes


Care Package



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Chocolate Covered Pretzels

So I decided to do some simple treats in between bigger projects. I used to make these for my kids when they were younger. I would make chocolate covered pretzels and ship them to the kids at boarding school. I made enough to share with their room mates. I was a popular mom…lol. The only thing hard about making these is how much time it takes to do a whole bag of pretzels. Since it’s winter I’m not worried about the chocolate melting, but come summer chocolate will not be on the menu.

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This is my first official food post for Joan’s Kitchen. I’m still trying to figure out how I want to do all this. I thought I would take an ingredient and make a few things with it. This time I made four different recipes that contain walnuts.

It’s taken me all week, several runs to the market, one flop (fudge) that I had to do over, waiting on the bananas to ripen and then timing it all so it’s still fresh to wrap, ship and get to its destination before it grew mold…. I think I need to do better next time. Making four things is going to be way too much. I need to scale back or I’ll be done with this project by Valentines Day.  I’ll do my homework on what to make all week but I think one day of shopping and cooking and the next day shipping everything is a reasonable plan I can live with.  I need to be more organized.  ….and I need to remember to TAKE PICTURES!!!!!


  • All the recipes for baklava are very similar. I tried a different one this time but prefer the one I used before. I linked the first one.
  • I like my banana nut bread recipe better but it’s at home in Colorado
  • Banana nut bread is better in a big loaf
  • When making fudge follow the directions exactly.
  • Hot boiling sugar really burns if it gets on your skin.
  • Packaging is a challenge.
  • Shipping is almost cost prohibitive.

I’m shipping this off to my kids today, I hope everything gets to its destination intact.  Enjoy!


Maple Walnut Syrup

Walnut Fudge

Banana Walnut Bread

Goodie Boxes

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