Saturday, September 14, 2013


Hello friends! I am back with another unusual post, and this one is about my pumpkin spice obsession, which you may have already known about if you follow my Instagram. This year I decided to take my obsession to a whole 'nother level, and, as you can tell from the title of the post, I'm going to go on a hunt for pumpkin (spice) related (food) products. I'll be posting on mainly Instagram, but I will get back and post it on this blog post, so it will be updated throughout the season. I'm not sure if I'll be able to find a lot of the more popular products, or even buy them [because what if it's something I hate, but pumpkin spice flavored?] but I'll try.

Okay, let's begin!

Starbucks Pumpkin Bread
Pictured: Pumpkin Bread and Salted Caramel Mocha from Starbucks.
Eaten on: Thursday, September 5, 2013
Starbucks is pretty easy place to find pumpkin food items [ahem, their trio of pumpkin pastries, plus the famous PSL, all of which I'll be purchasing this year] so this was first up on my pumpkin kick!

Costco Pumpkin Streusel Muffins

Pictured: A 6-pack of Pumpkin Streusel Muffins
Seen on: Saturday, September 7, 2013
Well, this is a new item from Costco! Sadly, I didn't get to purchase this because I already had too many sweets in the house when I went shopping, so hopefully Costco will still be making and selling these during my next visit.

Betty Crocker Pumpkin Bar Mix and Pumpkin Spice Cookie Mix

Pictured: The two mixes in their cute and decorative packaging. And also sideways.
Seen on: Sunday, September 8, 2013
Another thing I had to pass up because I had too much stuff in the house. I remember they had these last year, but the packaging wasn't so Fall-themed. I also remember Target having a lot of these on clearance near the end of the season, so maybe that's when I'll pick them up.

Pillsbury Pumpkin Creme Cake Mix and Perfectly Pumpkin Cake Mix 

Pictured: Both cake mixes
Seen on: Monday, September 9, 2013
As I was wallowing through Target [because it was the first day of school], I happened upon these two items, alongside Caramel Apple cake mixes, for the fall season. I didn't buy them that day, but I will buy at least the Perfectly Pumpkin cake mix, since I don't know if I need a bundt cake pan for the first one.

Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Latte and Pumpkin Spice Cream Cheese Muffin

Pictured: PSL + Muffin
Eaten on: Monday, September 9, 2013
First PSL of the season! Many more to come. Plus, I was surprised that the Starbucks I went to still had more than one of these muffins by 4pm! They usually run out really quick. Maybe they stocked up on a lot this year. Yay :>

Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Frappucino

Pictured: Remaining half of PSF
Drunk on: Wednesday, September 11, 2013
I originally wasn't going to buy this... but I gave in. It was really hot that day! It was so cinnamon-y, and so freaking good. No regrets.

Dunkin' Donuts Iced Pumpkin Coffee

Pictured: Mildly blurry pic of the drink
Drunk on: Friday, September 13, 2013
I remember getting this last year, and this trip to DD was no different. I think my friend and I said the same exact things:
Me: "Oo! Pumpkin spice! But from DD! Oh wait, the hot one has white chocolate. I hate white chocolate."
-After drinking coffee-
Maggie: "It's not bad, but it's a tad too sweet."
Me: "Meh."
Yeah, this pretty much sums up the whole drink, if you must know. Side note: you can't see it in this picture, but the straw was too long for this cup size. Think Venti sized straw stuck into a Tall cold cup [at Starbucks, obviously].

Archer Farms Pumpkin Spice Coffee K-cups

Pictured: Box of Pumpkin Spice K-Cups. What a deal!
Seen on: Friday, September 13, 2013
*This picture, alongside a lot of the following pictures, was from Target. I couldn't buy anything because I had about $15, which is an insufficient amount for all this stuff anyway. Plus, I wasn't going home after that trip, so I didn't want to lug around all of it anyway. I'll buy a lot of these on Tuesday. Promise.*
There's a reason why I didn't even consider buying this product...and it's because I don't have a Keurig, although I think they're pretty damn cool. However, I think I'll stick with my coffee machine. If you do have a Keurig, well, lucky you.

Pepperidge Farm Pumpkin Cheesecake Cookies 

Pictured: Bag of fall-themed cookies
Seen on: Friday, September 13, 2013

Eggo Seasons Pumpkin Spice Waffle

Pictured: Box of waffles + Target sign/suggestion
Seen on: Friday, September 13, 2013

Maxwell House Pumpkin Spice Beverage Mix

Pictured: Containers of beverage mix/creamer
Seen on: Friday, September 13, 2013
This, I definitely have never seen before. I'm quite excited for it, since I like stuff like hot cocoa mixes.

Archer Farms Pumpkin Spice Ground Coffee

Pictured: Bag of ground coffee plus a whole lotta sale signs
Seen on: Friday, September 13, 2013
I saw this last year, I think, and I wasn't sure if I was too into this product...The problem is that flavored ground coffee doesn't have as potent as a flavor of other things like the creamer that you'd usually put in your coffee. So, while I'm not expecting too much out of this, I might just buy it anyway...

Tazo Seasonal Pumpkin Spice Chai Latte

Pictured: Box of drink and an accidental corner of a phone
Seen on: Friday, September 13, 2013
This is certainly new. I don't even like chai that much, but it'll be interesting to see how it goes together with the pumpkin spice.

Frosted Pumpkin Pie Pop-Tarts

Pictured: I think this might have been the last box of these Pop-Tarts... oh no.
Seen on: Friday, September 13, 2013
I had these last year, and they were quite good. The filling does remind you of pumpkin pie filling (it's probably the cinnamon) and the crust tastes, well, like the crust of a pie. So, yeah, probably gonna buy these again.

Archer Farms Pumpkin Spice Instant Oatmeal

Pictured: Box of Yum. Is this even seasonal?
Seen on: Friday, September 13, 2013
Instant Oatmeal?! Yeah, I kind of expected this. Good thing I like oatmeal. Want this!!

Archer Farms Pumpkin Pancake and Waffle Mix

Pictured: Box of waffle mix
Seen on: Friday, September 13, 2013
This stuff is definitely here all-year round. The picture makes it look so good ;_; Buying pancake mix is a sin...but for you guys... I might do it.

Archer Farms Pumpkin Pie Spice

Pictured: Beautiful jar of spice
Seen on: Friday, September 13, 2013
The actual spice! We always hear pumpkin spice, but rarely do we actually think of a jar of the stuff. But here it is. The ingredients read: Spices (including nutmeg and cinnamon). Who are you trying to fool?

UGH wow that was long. More to come! /muffled sobs in the background.
Yes, this is kinda outdated (according posting times and whatnot) because  I NEVER GOT AROUND TO UPLOADING IT. So the parts that are pictureless, sorry, but I am way lazy and don't feel like fixin it up and making it look nice. I WILL be adding more to this!

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Doughnut Plant, Part 2

In the previous post, "Doughnut Plant, Part 1", I left you off with this:
"Well, you're probably sick of hearing me not talk about the doughnuts. Soon, child. Soon." 

Can you guess what this post is going to be about? Yeahhhh. Doughnuts. "FINALLY!", you exclaim from your seat while scaring your dog. Yes, finally. Let's begin.

Crème Brûlée Doughseed: This is the first doughnut I had at Doughnut Plant about a year ago. Because I had it so long ago, I only slightly recall what it tasted like, so do not trust my opinion on this. All I remember is a creamy custard filling, and a burnt yet flaky sugar topping. I do not think I enjoyed this doughnut as much as the others.
Pictured: Coconut Lime Cake Doughnut and Blackout Cake Doughnut, both bitten into.

Coconut Lime Cake: Maggie's first doughnut! Of course I took a few bites from it, because I have to try everything. It had a pleasant texture - it was fluffy but not so light that it would fall apart. The lime was more prominent than the coconut, since the coconut was only present in its shredded form, so she had recommended the doughnut be called Lime Coconut.

Pictured: Blackout Cake Doughnut, gracefully lying on
the Doughnut Plant Paper Bag, crumbs everywhere.

Blackout Cake: At first, I was unsure of this flavor. I am not a chocoholic, but I certainly would not pass up an offer of a chocolate doughnut. I asked the cashier what the doughnut was comprised of, and he had me at "chocolate pudding". Yes, children, it's stuffed with pudding!!! It has chocolate cake crumbs sprinkled over the doughnut, so it is a messier doughnut, but I love the dark cocoa flavor it gives.

Matcha Green Tea Cake: Matcha, in my opinion, is something that grows onto you the more you drink it. At first sip, you might think it tastes meaty and weird, but the more your Asian parents force it down your throat with a funnel, the less you regard its meatiness. If you like Green Tea Frappucinos from Starbucks, you'll probably really like this doughnut. The earthiness of the matcha is not lost, which is always a good sign of a doughnut. I like how the glaze of the doughnut and the inside of the doughnut are different shades of green. I don't have a picture though - you'll just have to see it for yourself.
Pictured: On the top, Coconut Cream
Square Filled Doughnut. The left, the
Matcha Green Tea Cake Doughnut, and on
the right, the Peanut Butter Square Filled

Coconut Cream Square Filled: Let me just start off by saying the coconut cream filling in this was oddly...refreshing. I was surprised when I bit into the doughnut because of how cooling and light the filling was! If the cream had been made out of coconut milk, you know, the thick viscous stuff you get from the can, then color me surprised because it is nothing like the coconut milk from a can. Except for the coconut part. This doughnut was mildly coconut-y, which I don't mind. However, if you are an avid coconut fan, you may be disappointed. The glaze on this is hardly coconut-y, but the filling compensates for the lacking glaze.

Peanut Butter and Banana Cream Square Filled: This doughnut is easily one of my favorites. A creamy, VERY potent banana cream is enveloped in a yeasty doughnut, which is covered in glaze and chunks of peanuts.  Yes, I really do think the Banana Cream is the star of this doughnut because it is just. so. STRONG. It does not taste artificial at all, and I appreciate its prominence in the pastry, although my sister who had also tasted it was not as giddy about the filling as I was. :c As for the peanuts, I was surprised at how much I liked them; I usually don't enjoy whole peanuts because they're really salty and flavorful, but I like how they balanced the sweetness of the banana. UGH, I just love this doughnut so much.

Tres Leches Cake: Tres Leches is one my favorite cakes ever. Some people are turned off by the sopping wetness of it, but the milks are what gives the cake its unique quality - hence, its name, TRES LECHES. This doughnut is a pretty good representation of the cake, although it wasn't soaking wet with milk. That is probably a good thing; we wouldn't want it to fall apart and soak your cute Doughnut Plant decorated paper bag. I brought this doughnut home for my sister, and we warmed it up a little in the microwave and it just transformed. I swear I saw a filling in the doughnut, and it might have been sweetened condensed milk. Or I could have been hallucinating. 

Triple Chocolate Cake: Once you go Blackout, you can't go back. While I do like this doughnut, Blackout just takes the cake [hahaha] for chocolate cake doughnuts. This doughnut, alongside the Tres Leches doughnut, was brought home to my sister and warmed up in the microwave. Yet again, the doughnut transformed after it was microwaved. Was it the Tres Leches doughnut or this doughnut that had a filling? Was I hallucinating both times? Was I imagining a chocolate pudding filling, hoping that the workers at Doughnut Plant had given me a Blackout dressed up as a Triple Chocolate? I...don't know anymore. I do know that this doughnut was yummy, because who doesn't love chocolate cake doughnuts? If you are a chocolate lover, get this if and only if they run out of Blackout. Or if you hate bitter cocoa. It's a matter of preference, really.

Pictured: The outside of the store, when it was surrounded by scaffolding. Blurry, because I was walking.

Carrot Cake: I had not even planned to try this doughnut, but my other sister had requested I bring home this flavor. I guess I was in a bad mood that day, because I had it and I didn't like it. When I think back to it, I wonder what I was thinking. It did remind me of a carrot cake. I recall tasting cinnamon, and then biting into a chewy raisin [re-hydrated!] and then eventually got to the carrot bits. I don't remember tasting cream cheese frosting, but maybe it was in the glaze? Or perhaps it wasn't present at all. Maybe if I was on a carrot cake kick, I would've been in love, but I wasn't. Wrong doughnut at the wrong time. As for my sister, she thought the doughnut had a very natural carrot flavor and it didn't taste like most carrot cakes. If you love carrot cake, definitely try this. You probably didn't have to read this to decide that, did you? I hope not.

Pictured: Display Case of Doughnuts. Yes, I am recycling this photo because I ran out, but at least you can see the Blueberry Cake Doughnut and the Carrot Cake Doughnut. In the bottom row on the very left, you can see the Triple Chocolate Cake Doughnut.

Blueberry Cake: I was so happy to see that Doughnut Plant still had the Blueberry doughnuts even though they were supposed to be gone, according to the seasonal menu. Like the matcha, I was amused at the different colors of the inside and the glaze of the doughnut. Once again, I don't have a picture, but the glaze was a purplish-blue while the doughnut was a funky looking "I-accidentally-smushed-the-blueberries-in-my-blueberry-muffin" color. Why isn't that a crayon color yet? Anyway, the glaze has a stronger blueberry flavor than the cake part, probably because the blueberry in the glaze was still technically fresh. The blueberry skins are a part of the doughnut that I feel like some people would be weirded out by [especially if those people are texture freaks], but it just shows me that these doughnuts are made with REAL blueberries.

Peach Yeast: If you couldn't tell after reading all these paragraphs of me talking about doughnuts, I love cake doughnuts more than yeast doughnuts. I thought I would switch it up the day I bought this, though, because I was feeling like "stepping out of my comfort zone." Because that is what people really refer to when they say that phrase: trying a new flavor of doughnut on a type of doughnut you don't like as much. Obviously. This isn't the first time I've had Doughnut Plant's yeast doughnuts, since the Square Filled doughnuts use yeast doughnuts. The doughnut was pleasantly chewy. Isn't gluten just great? The peach was present in the glaze, and, like the blueberry doughnut, the skin of the peach was the part of the glaze that reminded me that real peaches were used. If you're into the yeasties, pick this up.

Whew! That was a lot for you, wasn't it? Yeah, this took me a while to post, not because I did each paragraph a day, oh no. I wrote a rough draft of this whole post at 3AM one night "because I was bored" and then I never bothered editing it because it was so long and I didn't want to read it, ha.

Anyway, that's it for all the doughnuts I've tried so far. I hope I'll be back to update you on more flavors or re-tastes. I'm definitely excited to try the new raspberry doughnuts that Doughnut Plant has this season. Until then, farewell, readers.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Cookie Bars - A Recipe Post!

Wait a second, this isn't a food review! I know we don't usually, or ever, as a matter of fact, post recipes, but I thought it would be nice having something different; try something new, you know? The blog isn't changing; we're sticking with food reviews. The recipes will be a new addition to the blog.

For this post, I'm going to show you how to make Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars. Maybe I should have started with a different type of recipe, but I had a soon-to-be-expired box of cake mix and an eagerness to write recipe posts since I have so many to share with you.

DISCLAIMER: These type of posts are probably going to be mostly baking/dessert recipes.

REAL DISCLAIMER: Most of these recipes are not mine. Because I hope to not be a recipe thief, I will link [if applicable] and properly source them. If this recipe is yours and the source is incorrect, please contact me at Also, I am going to apologize in advanced because I am probably going to reply late if you do email me.

As you heard me briefly mention, I had an almost expired box of cake mix. "But Kitty," you begin, "I thought we were making Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars!" We are! The cake mix is our "secret ingredient" and no, I am not a producer of Chopped or Iron Chef America, and I am not obsessed with secret ingredients. I was considering naming this post "Recipes Using Cake Mixes", so I could be just like yoyomax12, but I decided against it.

After closer analysis of the recipe, I discovered that the recipe is simply a regular chocolate chip cookie dough recipe, omitting the flour, baking powder/soda and salt with cake mix. I suppose the extra agents of the cake mix give the bars a fluffy texture rather than a dense one. Clever, very clever.

Okay, time for the recipe!

Let's begin with the things you will need.

 Here I have brown sugar, white cake mix [with pudding], butter [softened], eggs, water [in the orange cup] and a giant bag of chocolate chips, which is tilted sideways. For exact measurements, see down below.