Double Chocolate Amaranth Cookies

Happy Monday!! It seems that we might have Spring weather this week (finally!). I can’t wait to start wearing flip flops and shorts, I’m really done with this cold and wet weather.

As some of you might know, I was born in Peru and one of the most popular grain while growing up was puffed amaranth or kiwicha (in Spanish). I really didn’t care much for it when I was young, but now that I’m an adult I know more about its nutrients. Amaranth is a good source of magnesium, iron, calcium and fiber so why not adding it to our baked goods? You can add these puffed grain to your pancakes, brownies, cakes and cookies!

I had these cookies in mind for a while but I wasn’t able to find puffed amaranth at my regular grocery stores, so I got it on Amazon! It’s sold by “Erbology” and I can say that their products have good quality. So, if you can’t find puffed amaranth in regular stores, just go ahead and buy it online.

These cookies have chocolate from cacao powder and mini chocolate chips (double chocolate yay!). Also, you can taste the light crunchy amaranth that gives a toasty and nutty flavor!

Ready for the recipe? Let’s start baking!

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Chocolate Bourbon Maple Bacon Cupcakes

Happy Monday! I made these cupcakes a couple of weeks ago for my husband’s birthday. As most guys (I think), he likes good bourbon and bacon! I was thinking how to mix those 2 ingredients into cupcakes, so I thought about this soft chocolate bourbon cake topped with maple bourbon buttercream frosting and garnished with little pieces of crispy bacon! I told him my idea and he was like omg yes!

If you are not a bacon person (like me), give this recipe a chance! You would be very surprise how the salty bacon works so good with the chocolate, bourbon and maple!

Let’s start with the recipe!

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Chocolate Hazelnut Bites

How is everyone doing? I just came back from the endodontist because I need a root canal retreatment. I really dislike having teeth issues, but I always had them so I’m “kinda” used to them. They will start with the retreatment tomorrow, so that’s going to be fun (aka be in pain lol).

Anyway, it’s been raining a lot in Northern California and although we really needed the rain, I think we had enough. We are out of the drought, so we don’t need storms anymore. With that, I can foresee a very bad allergy season for me, time for some Zyrtec!

Do you like chocolate? I love it. I think I could eat chocolate everyday, even if it’s just a tiny piece. I love plain, with nuts, with caramel, chocolate cake, chocolate cookies, you name it! I like it all! I was trying to think about a recipe for a “healthier” version of Ferrero Rocher chocolates (we love Ferrero at home). So, I came with this idea of chocolate truffles made with hazelnuts, cacao powder and sweetened with dates!

Let’s start with the recipe!

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Pistachio Cardamom Cookies

Hello everyone! It’s been a while since my last post (December). I got super busy after Christmas because I was getting ready for my trip to Peru . I went to visit my parents and I just got back a 2 weeks ago. After my trip, I had to catch up with things at home, rest and decide what I was going to bake next! But, here I am, back to my kitchen and my regular blogging!

Don’t forget to follow me on Instagram @pastry_tales , I try to post stuff daily. Around Christmas time, I went to a local Indian store to get some spices, one of them was green cardamom pods. For me, it was easier to find the pods than the powder. These are some kind of shortbread cookies packed with pistachios and a hint of green cardamom.

Let’s start with the recipe.

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Gingerbread Latte Cupcakes

Happy Wednesday!! Christmas is just around the corner and I’m still trying to figure out the menu for that day.  I think we’re going to stop by Costco tomorrow so we can choose the meat for our Christmas lunch with my husband’s family. I love hosting Christmas. I always bake cookies, breads, make hot chocolate and sometimes I even come up with games. I have to start baking on Sunday morning so I can enjoy Christmas Eve with my husband too. Please, don’t take this wrong… I love baking and hosting but I also like to enjoy some free time just watching a movie with a nice cold glass of champagne. Our Christmas Eve tradition is to just chill, watch a movie, exchange gifts and wait till midnight (I always set up a Nativity, so I pray and then we go to bed).

Let’s talk about these cupcakes.  They are soft gingerbread espresso cupcakes, brushed with hot coffee and topped with homemade whipped cream frosting. These little cakes will remind you of one of your favorite holiday drinks from your favorite coffee shop “Gingerbread Latte Cupcakes”.

Let’s start with the recipe.

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Christmas Chocolate Alfajores


As some of you might know I was born in Lima-Peru (South America). My mother is one of the reasons I like baking so much. Since I was a kid, I always admired how she baked everything from scratch. If it was my birthday or Christmas or just a simple tea time with her friends, she was always a great host taking care of every little detail. Now, my mom suffers from an early stage of dementia, so baking and cooking are not a priority to her anymore, she has a person who does all those things for her. I visit my parents twice a year, but I check on them everyday with a device called   “Amazon Show”, it’s a pretty cool little device, easy to use for older people who don’t manage technology very well. We can see each other and I tell them (specially my mom) about my pastries/desserts, I think that is why my blog is called “Pastry Tales”.

If you are from South America or if you have ever visited, you should know that “Alfajor” is the most popular cookie down there, a very soft shortbread filled with dulce de leche, I learnt to bake this cookie when I was a kid. Thanks mom!!

This year, I won’t travel to Peru for Christmas because I’ll be going in January, so I decided to make this version of alfajores called “Christmas Chocolate Alfajores”. I made the cookie with flour, cocoa powder and hazelnuts. The filling is dulce de leche and they are lightly dusted in powdered sugar.

I used a Linzer Cookie Cutter Set, but if you don’t have that, you can just use a round shape one.

Let’s start with the recipe!

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Walnut Maple Bars

Happy Tuesday! Hope everyone is doing great. I can’t believe that we’ll be celebrating Christmas in less than two weeks. I haven’t figured out the Christmas menu yet, but I’ll be baking a few things for sure. 

One of my favorite nuts is walnuts, they go so well with everything. I add them to cookies, cakes, brownies, cheese boards, oatmeal, etc. This time I decided to make some kind of blondies/bars using walnuts in 3 forms: ground walnuts, chopped walnuts and walnuts to decorate. Also, I’m using maple syrup which I think works perfect with these nuts. The result of this combination is just heaven! These bars are perfect for any time of the day or you can make them for your Christmas gatherings too.

For me, the best brand of nuts is Diamond. They offer fresh and good quality nuts. You can find them at any grocery store. Here is their website so you can learn more about them: https://www.diamondnuts.com/

Let’s start with the recipe!

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Orange Cranberry Bundt Cake

Happy Sunday Everybody! I’ve been sick with a bad cold for the last couple of days! Steve (my husband) started feeling weird after we came back for our little trip to Lake Tahoe and I started to feel with a cold not too long after that. I haven’t baked since Wednesday but today I got up with this orange blueberry muffins idea in my head. I went to the kitchen, made them but they didn’t look that pretty! I feel bummed because I wanted to share the recipe with you all but it happens! They tasted good though, I will try to make them again soon.

And talking about orange…. I almost forgot to post this recipe for Orange Cranberry Bundt Cake. Super easy to make and perfect for your Christmas gatherings with family and friends.

Let’s start with the recipe!

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German Lebküchen

Happy Monday! I’m all about Christmas cookies right now! Today, I’m showing you how to make one type of German gingerbread cookies (German Lebküchen) , “Nurnberger Lebkuchen”. I was a little bit confused about the gingerbread spice that is typically used in these kind of cookies because it is not the normal gingerbread spice that we are used to, it has a unique flavor.

First, you have to make your own German gingerbread spice blend which includes cinnamon, cloves, allspice, coriander, green cardamom, ginger, star anise, mace and nutmeg! I know… too many spices for one cookie?? Nope, you can store this wonderful spice for other cookies and cakes (I promise to post other recipes where you can use this wonderful spice).  You can also buy this online but there is nothing better than make your own plus it’s kind of expensive for the amount you get. I went to a local Indian market and got green cardamom beans for a very good price!

Let’s talk about the cookie, you’ll need eggs, hazelnuts, almonds, citrus peel, orange peel and gingerbread spice of course!! These cookies don’t need flour, just nuts! Because of their texture, it’s preferable that you use wafers (Back Oblaten), you can get those online.

And to finish… the 2 types of glaze. You can use chocolate or a sugar glaze.

I know, there are too many things to consider, just follow all the instructions and you’ll get beautiful cookies to share or gift during this holiday season.

Let’s start with the recipe.

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Brown Butter Bourbon Chocolate Pecan Cookies

Happy Tuesday!! I can’t believe this is the last week of November! Hope everybody had a great Thanksgiving and maybe Black Friday?. I went Black Friday shopping late Thursday night and I thought that maybe because of the heavy rain it was going to stop people to get out of their warm homes and go shopping, but guess what! It was super crowded and we didn’t find a spot to park, it was a disaster! We tried again Friday afternoon and we did a little shopping, but I think next year I’ll just sit on my pc and shop online.

Christmas is a big baking holiday at my house, specially cookies and breads. Here is the recipe for Brown Butter Bourbon Chocolate Pecan Cookies. No, you don’t buy “brown butter” at the supermarket (I was told this by a few people). Browning butter on a pan helps release a nutty aroma which works perfect with bourbon and nuts . Making brown butter is easy, just keep an eye on it while cooking because it can burn easily.

Let’s start with the recipe.

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