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Posts Tagged ‘condensed milk’

Two weekends ago, Melinda and Amelia came over for a dessert baking party. Wine was opened, chocolate was melted and these bars were inhaled. I’m not exaggerating. Melinda wouldn’t even wait for them to set! The pan of Trail Mix Seven layer bars was passed around between all of us on the couch (including two of my roommates) and we ate them directly from the pan.

With our hands.

I wish I was kidding.

I wish we could say we were stoned to at least excuse our behavior but nope! They were just delicious and that’s the only excuse we had!

I woke up the next morning to find a tiny little corner piece was all that remained. The five of us ate almost the whole pan! Clearly, a photograph was not taken and even if it was, I don’t think any of us want us unceremoniously shoving trail mix bars into our faces with our hands to be available on the internet!

Either way, I was forced to make them again for you so I could actually get a picture.

Trail Mix Seven Layer Bars
inspired by Vegan Baking

Crust:

  • 9 cinnamon graham crackers (one packet in Honey Graham Set)*
  • 5 TBSP of coconut oil, melted
  • 1 TBSP + 1tsp water
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup apple juice infused dried cherries (or regular dried cherries)
  • 1/2 cup craisins
  • 1/2 cup chopped almonds
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/2 cup vegan chocolate chips
  • 1 cup condensed milk (recipe here. I used Unsweetened Vanilla Almond milk this time)

Prepare the condensed milk ahead of time.

Preheat the oven to 325F. Line an 8×8 baking dish with parchment paper and set aside.

Put the graham crackers in a large ziploc baggy and crush until the graham cracker are roughly the texture of sand. (You can use a food processor but honestly, why lug it out and then have to wash the whole darn thing when crushing them works just as easily??).  Add coconut oil, water and salt to  your crushed graham crackers, seal up the bag and mush it all around until everything is well incorporated.

Dump the graham cracker crumbs into your 8×8 pan. Spread evenly. Use the bottom of a drinking glass to press down on the crumbs until they are tightly packed together.

Cover the graham crackers with the toppings. Pour the condensed milk over the toppings.

Bake for 35 minutes.  Once removed from the oven, allow to cool completely before cutting into it. I would recommend putting it in the fridge overnight. If you don’t let it cool, it will just be a crumbly mess of ingredients. I mean, it will still be delicious! But it won’t hold together in bar form. Trust me…the crumbly mess is what we ate the first go around because we were impatient.

*I know graham crackers often have honey in them. I could not find honey-less graham crackers when I was at Whole Foods but I don’t have an issue with honey so I went ahead and used them. Also, the Honey Graham brand and Whole Food’s 365 brand had mostly the same ingredients. If you are looking for a honey-less, more all-natural version, I would recommend trying to make these and swap out the honey for agave syrup or maple syrup. These have been on my ‘to-make’ list forever but this recipe wasn’t the time to try it.

The idea for these came about because my cafetaria at work always has seven layer bars and they are sooo good. and sooo not vegan. This was my vegan version. It’s a little heartier with all the fruit and nuts. The great thing about these is, like trail mix, you can customize it to your liking. You could swap out the cherries for raisin (eww, please don’t) or dried blueberries. You could swap out the almonds and pecans for different types of nuts. And you could use any time of non-dairy milk for the condensed milk.

Now seriously, go make these. And maybe have a fork ready so you don’t end up eating them with your hands. Though…I hear all the cool kids are doing that…just sayin’.

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As I mentioned last week, I was feeling kind of sick and in a bit of a cooking funk after my two messed up recipes. As a result, I avoided the kitchen. I was eating raw carrots, cucumbers and avocados (I told you I’m obsessed!) with hummus for lunch, heating up left overs for dinner and overall, not doing a lot of things that make for good Wicked Vegan posts.

But this weekend, oh…this weekend was different. Why? Because St. Patty’s Day is this week! Sometimes you just need a little inspiration to get you back in the kitchen and that is exactly what St. Patrick’s Day has done for me. I was a cooking fool this weekend and as a result, I have a week full of yummy Ireland inspired meals for you!

First, let’s start with homemade Bailey’s Irish Cream. What better way to start my week of Irish inspired food than by starting with an Irish drink, which you can drink straight up on the rocks or use in a myriad of recipes. When my family and I went to Ireland in 2007, I had a nightcap of Bailey’s almost every evening I was there. It’s had a special place in my heart since then.

Homemade Vegan Irish Cream Original Flavor
inspired by cupcakeproject.com (I’m sorry I’m not linking to that page but every time I try to check out this recipe, it allows me to scroll for 5 seconds and then it freezes on me. It took me several times, strategiclly scrolling in those 5 seconds, to get the non-vegan recipe for me to convert.)

1 C soy cream

14 oz sweetened condensed milk (I used vanilla almond milk)*

1 C- 1 2/3 C Irish whiskey (I used Jameson’s)**

1 t instant coffee

2 T melted vegan chocolate (the original recipe called for Hersey’s syrup but I wasn’t feeling the chemicals in Hersey’s syrup so I just melted some vegan chocolate chip with a little vegetable shortening to thin it out)

1 t vanilla

Combine all ingredients in a blender and set on high speed for 30 seconds.

Bottle in a tightly sealed container and refrigerate. Shake before using.

* I used almond milk for my condensed milk, which I had never done before. The result was a very strong almond after taste, which you can pick up in the finished Irish Cream. This isn’t bad, and the original recipe even called for 1 tsp of almond extract, but it definitely is a difference between the vegan version and the original Bailey’s. As you read this, I have soy milk condensing in my slow cooker and if you check back tomorrow, I will let you know how that comes out.

** Um, sooo…the original recipe on cupcakeproject.com recommended 1 2/3 C of whiskey but, um, well… I’m a huge lightweight. There! I said it! I’m part irish and I’m a lightweight. *sigh* it’s not something I’m proud of people. But, because of this, I only put 1 C of whiskey into my irish cream, and not the full 1 2/3 C. You can use your own discretion when adding the booze. Also, in case you were curious, Jameson is vegan friendly. That website is great for any alcohol/vegan questions you may have.

Now, seeing as I have been DYING to make this recipe for about 2 months, when I finally had a chance, I couldn’t resist making 2 batches. I became obsessed with Chocolate Mint Bailey’s in December when my friend, Melinda, bought me a bottle as a Thank You gift. I think I had a glass every evening, which was the perfect way to end some seriously stressful work days. I knew that I had to attempt the Chocolate Mint version, as well as the original.

 Homemade Vegan Chocolate Peppermint Irish Cream 

inspired by cupcakeproject.com 

1 C soy cream

14 oz sweetened condensed chocolate milk (I used half chocolate almond milk and half dark chocolate almond milk)

1 C- 1 2/3 C Irish whiskey (I used Jameson’s)

1 t instant coffee

3 T melted vegan chocolate (the original recipe called for Hersey’s syrup but I wasn’t feeling the chemicals in Hersey’s syrup so I just melted some vegan chocolate chip with a little vegetable shortening to thin it out)

1 t peppermint extrant

Combine all ingredients in a blender and set on high speed for 30 seconds. The notes above regarding the almond milk and whiskey, obviously apply here too

Aww, perfect way to start off our week long celebration of Ireland. Cheers!

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