Thursday, August 24, 2023

Roasted eggplant focaccia sandwich for a crowd

Roasted eggplant focaccia sandwich for a crowd

Yield: 8 servings

Time: 45 minutes


For the eggplant

  • 2 small to medium eggplants (about 1 1/2 pounds), sliced into 1/2-inch-thick rounds
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne

For the pesto mayo

  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup pesto 

For the sandwich

  • 1 (9x13-inch) loaf focaccia
  • 8 ounces fresh mozzarella, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup bread and butter pickles
  • 1/4 red onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 cups greens (I like a mix of arugula and spinach)


For the eggplant

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. 
  2. Place eggplant slices on large rimmed baking sheet and brush both sides with oil. Season with paprika, salt, and pepper. 
  3. Roast until tender, about 30 minutes. Set aside to cool.

For pesto mayo

  1. Mix pesto and mayo together.

For sandwich assembly

  1. Place focaccia flat on cutting board, turn serrated knife sideways, and slice horizontally through center. Set top piece aside.
  2. Spread half the pesto mayo on bottom half of loaf. 
  3. Layer with mozzarella, eggplant, pickles, red onion, and greens.
  4. Spread remaining pesto mayo on top half of loaf and gently press on top of sandwich.
  5. Cut sandwich into 8 servings.

Thursday, August 17, 2023

Peach Cobbler Cake

This is a sponsored post by Challenge Butter, but the text and opinions are all mine. Thank you for supporting brands that make Kylee's Kitchen possible! 

There are a wide variety of baked fruit desserts that are all similar but have different names and variations depending on the region you live in. For some people, cobbler consists of a fruit base with a biscuit-like topping. For other people, cobbler is more like a cake. And that's the kind of cobbler I'm making today! I'm calling it a cobbler cake to avoid confusion.

I wanted to capitalize on the last of the fresh peaches left this season. As I'm sure you know, the last of the crop isn't usually the best of the crop. So the best way to consume them is to bake them.

So why make this type of cobbler as opposed to the biscuit-like cobbler? Well, peaches don't get as saucy as berries when baked, so cobbler biscuits don't soak up peach juices in the same way they soak up berry juices. But peaches bake up well into a cake-like cobbler.

Here's what I like about this cobbler cake:
  • You don't need to peel the peaches! The skin gives the peaches structure.
  • You can make it in one bowl. 
  • It's delicious warm, room temperature, or cold. My preference is warm with a scoop of ice cream!
I know you're ready to just skip to the recipe, but there are a couple more things I want to point out. 
  1. Soaking the peaches in peach schnapps can help intensify the peach flavor, especially if your peaches aren't super flavorful. The alcohol will mostly bake off in the oven. But the schnapps is optional.
  2. Always toast your nuts before adding them to a recipe. Always!
  3. You can place the baking dish with butter inside the refrigerator so the butter layer hardens making it easier to spread the batter on top. Also, you can substitute with equal amounts brown butter. The butter will rise up the sides of the cake creating delicious, chewy edges. Just make sure to use a good quality butter. I always use Challenge unsalted butter because I know the rich taste will shine through in the final product.
  4. If you do not have buttermilk, make your own. Pour 1.5 cups milk into a cup, remove 1.5 Tablespoons of the milk, add 1.5 Tablespoons lemon juice or white vinegar in its place, stir and let sit for 10 minutes.
  5. The purpose of the almonds and the decorating sugar is two-fold: for aesthetics and to add crunch. No big deal if you don't have decorating sugar.

Peach cobbler cake
Yield: Makes about 12 servings
  • 4 fresh peaches (about 12-14 ounces)
  • 1/4 cup peach schnapps (optional)
  • 1/2 cup sliced almonds
  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick or 113 grams) Challenge unsalted butter
  • 1 1/2 cups (180 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup (200 grams) brown sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 1/2 cups (360 ml) buttermilk
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 2 tablespoons decorating or Demerara sugar
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Slice peaches into 1/2-inch slices and place in bowl with peach schnapps. Set aside.
  3. Spread almonds on baking sheet and bake until toasted, about 7-8 minutes. Set aside.
  4. Meanwhile, place butter in 11x7-inch baking dish. Place dish in oven and allow butter to melt. This should only take a few minutes. Set baking dish aside.
  5. Combine flour, brown sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger, cardamom, and salt in large bowl. Add buttermilk and almond extract to dry ingredients and mix until just combined.
  6. Pour batter in even layer over melted butter. 
  7. Spoon peaches over batter. Sprinkle with almonds and decorating sugar.
  8. Bake. 50 minutes or until golden brown. Check doneness by lightly tapping center of cake. If cake bounces back, it's done.

Thursday, August 3, 2023

Brown butter miso chocolate chip cookies

This is a sponsored post by Challenge Butter, but the text and opinions are all mine. Thank you for supporting brands that make Kylee's Kitchen possible! 

Many people have opinions about what makes the perfect chocolate chip cookie, and I am certainly not here to debate them. The purpose of this post is for me to share a new kind of chocolate chip cookie with you—a brown butter miso chocolate chip cookie. This cookie is thick and chewy and sweet and salty and nutty and complex. They're everything I could want in a cookie, and it's all thanks to the addition of brown butter and miso.

Both brown butter and miso are trendy in the food world right now. Sometimes people overdo it with trendy ingredients because they don't ask themselves what purpose it serves. That's why I want to explain why brown butter and miso work well in chocolate chip cookies.

The easiest way for me to do that is with a series of questions.

What is brown butter?

Brown butter is butter cooked past the melting point so the milk solids caramelize. This results in a toasty, nutty flavor. You can make brown butter by melting butter on the stove. The butter will sizzle, bubble, and foam, and then you'll see amber-colored flecks on the bottom. Brown butter has a subtle nutty, caramel flavor that works really well with brown sugar in cookies.

What is miso?

Miso is fermented soybean paste. That probably doesn't sound like an ingredient you want in chocolate chip cookies. But the nutty, salty flavor of white miso paste is subtle, and it perfectly balances the sweetness of chocolate chip cookies.

Can any butter become brown butter?

Technically, yes, but I do have some suggestions. First, use unsalted butter. I always use unsalted butter when I bake so I can adjust the salt levels separately. Different brands of butter contain different salt levels. Second, if you're taking the time to brown butter, it's probably one of the star ingredients in your recipe, so I recommend using a good quality butter. I always use Challenge unsalted butter. Challenge butter is made with 100% real pasteurized sweet cream. That’s it. Nothing artificial or synthetic. 

Do I need to treat brown butter differently than regular butter?

Yes! I'm a proponent of weighing all ingredients for correct measurements, and this is especially true with brown butter. It's very important to weigh the butter AFTER browning because it loses water weight during the browning process. That's why you will notice that the initial weight of the butter in the recipe (310 grams) is different than the actual amount you will add to the dough (226 grams). You will probably have leftover brown butter. Lucky you! Spread it on toast or crackers for a delicious snack!

Can I use the brown butter while it's still melted?

No, I don't recommend it. When baking cookies, all butter, including brown butter, needs to be room temperature—not melted. That means you need to chill the brown butter until it is solid and then cream the butter with sugar. The sugar granules cut into the butter and create tiny air pockets to give it lift. If you don't do this, you'll end up with cookies that look like puddles. 

What type of chocolate should I use?

I like to use a combination of chopped dark chocolate and mini semi-sweet chocolate chips. I think dark chocolate pairs better with miso than sweeter chocolates like milk chocolate. And chopped chocolate results in a more even distribution of chocolate throughout the cookie.

Brown butter miso chocolate chip cookies

Yield: Makes about 28 cookies

Time: About 2 hours


  • 1 cup + 6 Tablespoons (310 grams) Challenge unsalted butter
  • 1 3/4 cup (375 grams) dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup (50 grams) granulated sugar
  • 3 Tablespoons (63 grams) white sweet miso paste
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 3 1/2 cups All Purpose flour (420 grams)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup (85 grams) dark chocolate, chopped
  • 1/2 cup (85 grams) mini semi-sweet chocolate chips


  1. Heat butter in stainless steel pot with high sides over medium-high heat. Stir frequently, at least every minute. Butter will sizzle and foam. Once milk solids look amber in color and smell nutty, remove pot from heat and pour butter into bowl. Refrigerate butter until it’s room temperature.
  2. Measure out 1 cup brown butter (226 grams) and place in mixing bowl. Add both sugars and miso to bowl.
  3. Cream butter, sugars and miso on high speed until mixture is light and fluffy. 
  4. Turn mixer to low and add eggs one at a time. Mix in vanilla.
  5. In separate bowl, combine flour, baking soda, and salt. Add flour mixture to butter mixture, and mix until almost combined. 
  6. Fold in chocolate, and mix until just combined.
  7. Cover dough and refrigerate at least 1 hour or up to 24 hours.
  8. When ready to bake cookies, preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  9. Measure out 50 grams dough (about 1/4 cup) and roll into ball. Place dough on greased baking sheet or baking sheet with silicone baking mat. 
  10. Bake for 11-12 minutes, rotating cookie sheet halfway through baking time.
  11. Remove baking sheet from oven and cool for several minutes before moving to wire rack to cool completely.
  12. Store cookies in airtight container for up to 5 days.

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