Brownies/Blondies Archive

Friday, December 19, 2008

grasshopper brownies

grasshopper squares

My grandmother was a pretty fly lady, though I am not sure anyone called her “fly” in her lifetime. She loved anything glamorous and I’m pretty sure she saw the point of doing a whole lot in moderation. She’d send my sister and I (beware, frightening New Jersey-in-the-80s references ahead) glittery and puff-painted jaw clips and manes from the flea markets in Florida, she never discouraged the splattered and acid-washed jeans and neon slouch socks I wish someone would have formed an intervention over (shudder) and I specifically remember her finding me a pair of silver moccasins that in my mind couldn’t have been any cooler.

melted chocolate

So, it should come as no surprise that when she made brownies, she didn’t just make any old brownies. Instead, they were three layer affairs; one chocolate, one mint and then a chocolate topping and she didn’t just stop there. Nope, Grandma took an Andes Candy, divided it in half on the diagonal, and sank it like a shark fin into that chocolate and her “creme de menthe brownies” were possibly the most glamorous thing I had ever seen and my favorite brownie to eat.

mmm, eau de freshly baked brownie

Continued after the jump »

Friday, October 17, 2008

pumpkin swirl brownies

pumpkin swirl brownies

When I first saw this recipe on the homepage of marthastewart.com last month, my first thought was “ooh, how perfectly fall!” but then a second later, “wait, this can’t be right.” I mean, chocolate and pumpkin together? I have to admit, it sounds off to me.

everything starts with buttermelting chocolate with butter

In my overly-analytical head, pumpkin goes with nutmeg and cinnamon and ground ginger and pecans and bourbon and cream cheese and gingersnaps; chocolate, however, goes with a whole different slew of things, like scraped vanilla beans and walnuts or mint or peanut butter or cream cheese and maybe occasionally some chipotle powder. They’re different, you see, different, different, different.

making brownie batteradding the pumpkin layer

And then? Then I said “my god, Deb, you’re such a square!” and I made them anyway. Because seriously, can one possibly have too many recipes for brownies? There’s no way. I worry too much about these things. Every single person who tried them, loved them and in a way, they’re the quintessential fall indulgence.

Continued after the jump »

Friday, September 5, 2008

the baked brownie, spiced up

the baked brownie, spiced up

If you’ve made as many brownies as I have in my life–and that’s a lot. I mean A LOT. Just ask my hips.–you come to realize a couple things: There are no bad from-scratch brownies.* Seriously, not even the batch that I forgot to add the flour to when I was in middle school, that I am pretty sure my mother still brings up whenever someone mentions what a great cook her daughter is, was destroyed. A little charred at the edges, perhaps, but they still quite tasty in the middle. Because you know we totally ate them anyway.

gratuitous 1

And if you’re me, the other thing you will likely realize is that it is impossible to have any brownie loyalty in this world. I can’t tell you how many times I have made a brownie and declared it the best one yet, and the one that would end all brownie-making experiments going forward. “Fat chance,” smirk the not-yet-auditioned brownie recipes, though I can never tell if they mocking my aforementioned hips, or simply my insistence that I will never have to look any further for Brownie Nirvana.

gratuitous 2

Continued after the jump »

Monday, October 1, 2007

peanut butter brownies

peanut butter brownies

It’s amazing to me, and crushing to Alex, that in the year that I have posted to this site I have not produced a single peanut butter recipe. How could this be? I love peanut butter. I have waxed poetic about the peanut butter cookies from Billy’s Bakery more than once. Reeses Peanut Butter Cups are the only widely-distributed candy I consider ‘worth it.’ I am weak in the knees in the face of it, to the point that I actually make an effort to not buy any. It’s just not safe around me. Armed with a spoon and the door to the fridge swung open, it gets ugly. There is safety in distance.

Continued after the jump »

Sunday, August 12, 2007

brownie mosaic cheesecake

brownie mosaic cheesecake

Alex’s birthday was Friday, and if there is one thing I think we all know by now about my sous-chef, assistant photographer, sometimes (coughoften) dishwasher and starry-eyed compatriot is that he is the true chocoholic in this family. There is rarely a dish, from strawberry tarts to banana bread, raspberry-filled sandwich cookies to bretzel rolls that he does not insist could be improved by the addition of chocolate. Or cheesecake. Or brownies. But mostly chocolate.

Continued after the jump »