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“Farasha’s Guilty Pleasure”

18 Nov

Magic Cookie Bars


Farasha means Butterfly in Arabic and is also the nickname of one of my dearest friends. Like a butterfly, she is very delicate, very beautiful – extremely attractive to the eye (any guy will agree and any girl will envy!). In other words, yes, she is a skinny bitch. So when you have her over and see her DEVOURING something sweet you know you hit the jackpot. That’s why this isn’t just any cookie bar… so watch out, try this and it will most certainly also become your guilty pleasure!


110g (½ cup) butter, melted | boter, gesmolten

125g (1 cup) graham cracker crumbs (any type of digestive cookie will do) | gewoon ‘digestive’ koekjes van Verkade

120g (1 cup) pecan nuts | pecan noten

170g (1 cup) semisweet chocolate chips | Smeltchocolade van de AH werkt prima!

100g (1 1/3 cups or 3 1/2 ounces) flaked coconut (you can also use grated) | geraspte kokos

1 can condensed milk | gecondenseerde melk bijvoorbeeld van Friesche Vlag

Yummy, condensed milk...


Preheat oven to 180°C (356°F). Use a 9×13 inch (22×33 cm) pan (shallow).

Pour melted butter and sprinkle crumbs evenly (easy way to make cookie crumbs if you don’t have a machine: place cookies inside a plastic bag and use the roller to roll over them until they become crumbs). Then pour condensed milk over crumbs, chopped pecan nuts over milk, then distribute the chocolate chip cookies on top of the nuts. Add the coconut and press into the dish.

Bake 25 minutes or until lightly brown. Cool 15 minutes before cutting into finger length bars. As tempting as it may be, do not take a bite before it has completely cooled down! That’s when all the flavours come together.

"Farasha" - "Butterfly"


“Canadian Cookie Crunch”

15 Nov

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

Guaranteed hit!

Make this for your friends, family and colleagues and you will be forever loved. Not to mention that it’s the easiest thing to make – even my sister could do them, blindfolded!

This recipe was given to me by a Canadian colleague who’s been living in the Netherlands for many, many years. She’s also a great baker and we can easily talk for hours about all the different recipes we’ve tried and tested.

A cheery chick, Elise’s enthusiasm for cooking and wine tasting is simply contagious. Luckily for us, she doesn’t mind sharing her recipes. Be sure of one thing, this won’t be the last you’ll hear of her.

What makes these cookies a sure hit?

The combination of ingredients and the deliciousness of the textures – that smooth peanut butter taste, the bite of the chocolate chips, the crunch on the outside, the chewiness on the inside…

Drooling yet? Let’s get baking then!

My lovely neighbour helped me bake this batch - we were up baking till 00:30!

Makes 24 cookies | 30 min prep | 10-12 min oven | 1hr cool


½ cup (120g) butter, softened | zachte boter

½ cup (120g) chunky or smooth peanut butter | pindakaas met of zonder stukjes

½ cup (100g) granulated sugar | kristalsuiker

½ cup (100g) brown sugar, firmly packed | bruine basterdsuiker

1 egg | ei

1 ¼ (125g) cups all purpose flour | bloem, gezeefd

½ tsp (4g) baking powder | bakpoeder

½ tsp baking soda (4g) | zuiverings zout (te koop bij de apotheek)

¼ tsp (1.5g) salt | zout

1 cup (200g) semisweet chocolate chips | Smeltchocolade van de AH werkt prima!


Preheat oven to 190°C (375°F). Cream the butter, peanut butter and sugars until light. Add egg and mix until fluffy.

Blend flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt together. Add to the butter mix. Finally incorporate chocolate chips.

Drop cookie dough by teaspoonfuls onto lightly greased baking sheets. Bake 10-12 minutes. You can make them as small or big as you want, just keep an eye on them as baking time will vary. When they come out, let them cool down on the oven tray first, as they will be very soft. As they cool down, they harden and you can transfer them to a rack to cool down further.

Warning: keep well away from dogs! Elise once left a batch of 48 cookies cooling on her kitchen worktop and somehow her dog managed to find his way up there – and yes, ate all 48 of them (and survived)!