My husband doesn't love a lot of sweet, sugary things! I know, I know, what a tragedy beings how I bake things pretty much every day! He also doesn't particularly like frosting, especially on cake. But the other day he emailed me this link to some brownies he remembered having at many different functions while in college that he liked. He was just passing the recipe along to me, since I am so into baking. These brownies come from BYU (Brigham Young University) and are SO good. The brownies are surprisingly rich and fudgy (I wasn't sure it would be, since it only has a bit of cocoa.) And the two layers of frosting really just kick the brownies up a notch on the "Whoa!" scale of deliciousness!
I only made one change from the original recipe as the recipe called for margarine in both the brownie and the icing, but I don't buy margarine, so I used butter. You really gotta try these! These are so good that I've given a bunch away and have tucked the rest away into the fridge and am doing well to pretend that they aren't here! I wish Kevin would eat them up. So far, he's only had a bite. We went to dinner with some friends last night and everyone shared a gigantic dessert, which made him over-the-top too full to come home later and try the brownies. He asked if there was a way to make them good and minty without the layers of frosting. In the past, I have made some really good brownies by just taking a bag of Andes mint pieces and sprinkling it on top of the baked, hot brownies. Once melted, spread evenly with a knife. Let cool and set. These are also good, but I'd have to say, these BYU Mint Brownies are exceptional!
BYU Mint Brownies, adapted slightly
1 cup butter (or margarine if you must)
1/2 cup cocoa powder
2 tablespoons honey (after all, Utah IS the beehive state!)
2 cups granulated sugar
4 large eggs
1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup walnuts, toasted and chopped (Nuts are so easy to "toast" in a plate in the microwave for 1-2 minutes, check after 30 second intervals depending on the amount used.)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9x13 inch pan with foil and spray with cooking spray. Set. aside.
Melt butter in microwave safe dish, combine with cocoa. Allow to cool slightly. Add honey, sugar and eggs. Mix well. Brownies batters can easily be mixed by hand with a whisk and wooden spoon. Add flour, baking powder and salt. Stir to combine until well mixed. Add nuts. Pour batter into pan and spread evenly. Bake for 25 minutes. (Start checking with a toothpick inserted in center to come out clean after 20 minutes.) Cool on wire rack.
Prepare mint icing.
5 tablespoons butter, softened
dash of salt
2-3 tablespoons milk
1 tablespoon light corn syrup
2 1/3 cups powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon mint extract
green food coloring
To the softened butter, add salt, corn syrup, and powdered sugar. Beat until smooth and fluffy. Add mint extract and food coloring. Mix well. Add milk gradually until the consistency is a little thinner than cake frosting. Spread mint icing over cooled brownies. Place brownies in the freezer for a short time to stiffen the icing. Remove from the freezer and add a layer of your favorite chocolate icing. (I used a 1/2 recipe for Hershey's Cocoa Frosting from off the can of cocoa. It's good!)
We interrupt this post to bring you a special message: When you're almost out of Nutella, a delicious choclately hazelnut spread, you must get more soon! Sam says so. (He was thrilled to pieces that I gave him the pretty-much empty container and let him have at it.....)
A few days later.......
"Ahhh, new fresh Nutella! Thanks, Mom!" Thanks, Nutella, I say! (Rita, we gotta try some of that Peanutella!)
And now back to our regularly scheduled goodies and recipes.
When you ask Kevin what his favorite cookie is, he thinks about it and pretty much always says "Snickerdoodles". Great, since it is his birthday tomorrow, I made him some. I haven't made these for a while, but always use this recipe I found years ago on Allrecipes. All I can say is I don't know who Mrs. Sigg is, but she has some great recipes out there. I know I've tried a number of other recipes from her as well. These are a great Snickerdoodle! They are perfectly crisp on the outside and chewy throughout. Now, while I do prefer a chocolate chip cookie, when I eat one of these, I am satisfied and they are really good. And now, I must not eat any more of them!
Mrs. Sigg's Snickerdoodles, found on Allrecipes.com
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup shortening (I know, I try not to use this either, but since it was for Kevin's birthday, I made an exception and it IS trans-fat free!)
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons cream of tartar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line baking sheets with parchment paper. Set aside.
In bowl of electric mixer, cream together butter, shortening, 1 1/2 cups sugar, eggs and vanilla. Blend in the flour, cream of tartar, baking soda and salt. Shape dough by rounded spoonfuls into balls. Mix 2 tablespoons sugar and 2 teaspoons cinnamon together. Roll balls of dough in mixture. Place two inches apart on baking sheets. Bake 8 minutes. Remove to wire racks to cool.
Another brief interruption from this regular post. Look at the size of this apple! You can't even tell how big it really was, but I seriously think it was the biggest apple I've ever seen. Nope, didn't get it at the farmer's market, although apples are rampant there right now. This was at the grocery store. It's a Cortland apple and was so perfectly sweet and tart and only $1.28 per pound. Also got some gorgeous MacIntosh apples that were equally as beautiful, but not quite as big--still big apples though. Yum!
Get this--I hosted a baby shower at our house a few days ago and made a number of goodies for it, including THESE Apple Crumb Bars that I made and posted recently and loved. So I made them for the shower, cut them up perfectly sized on a pretty plate and put it in the fridge to serve at the shower. The shower came and went and I never thought about the apple bars again, although I kept feeling like something was missing, they still never crossed my mind. After everyone left, I reached for a drink of water in the fridge and lookie what I found!
Bummer! I'd forgotten all about them. I really wanted to share them with everyone, too. So I packaged them up and stuck them in the freezer for another time! Sigh. These are so good! Thanks, Anna.
Stay tuned for some more delicious baked goods that I've made recently and stay tuned for my first Tuesday's With Dorie post. This ones gonna be good--Caramel-Peanut-Topped Brownie Cake!