melt in your mouth Brownies

I tried to dislike these.
I tried to say they were, ‘chocolate but bland.’
I tried to say, ‘theses need a strong shot of expresso.’


…these brownies are so moist, and ooooeeeyyyy  gooooeeeyy.  They just melt in your mouth!
These brownies are thin, baked in the 8×8 pan, but they are so rich.
melt in your mouth Brownies
(Adapted from Texas Fudge Brownies found here)
2 eggs
pinch of salt
1 c. sugar
1 t. vanilla
In separate bowl, melt in microwave:
2 oz chocolate (I used Olive and Sinclair 67% cacao)
1 stick butter
Cool slightly and add to egg mixture while whisking.
1/2 c. flour
Pour into greased 8×8 pan.
Bake at 350 degrees for about 25 minutes.
While the brownies are baking, make the frosting:
Over medium heat, bring to boil:
1/2 stick butter (1/4 cup)
1/4 c. whole milk
2 T cocoa powder
1/4 t espresso powder and a pinch of salt to hot butter mixture.
2 c. sifted powdered sugar and mix until smooth
Pour icing over hot brownies immediately after removing from oven.
Let cool completely before cutting; these cut more smoothly after refrigerated (but they taste better at room temperature!)

vanilla wafer bourbon ball

I found this in the back of the refrigerator in late February, 2011.  My recipe file states that these were made 12/19/2010.

The color, texture, and flavor had not suffered.  Apparently, bourbon preserves!

Vanilla Wafer Bourbon Balls
(adapted from Saveur here)
mix together:
28 vanilla wafers, crushed (you should have 1 c. crushed wafers)
1 c. pecans, chopped
3 T cocoa powder

in separate bowl, mix:
3 – 5 T bourbon (this was TOO much for me; I’ll only use about 2T next time)
1/4 c light corn syrup

Add wet to dry and mix well.  Portion about 1 T each and roll into balls.
Then, roll balls into a bowl of decorative sprinkles of your choice.

Store in refrigerator (original recipe says 1 week) but serve at room temperature.

blueberry muffins

I have an extensive cookbook library.  Many of these books I have purchased at used book stores (this makes me feel like a better steward of my resources); however, I do have my share of recently released books.  And, I anxiously await this one by Gesine Bullock-Prado!

A friend told me years ago that books are never a waste of money.  My library proves that I committed her comment to permanent memory.  Thanks..My Friend T.

I’ve decided to peruse the pages of these aging beauties, and bake from a variety of these cookbooks during 2011.  The blueberry muffins shown above claim spot #1 of this cookbook adventure.

On the inside first page, yellowing with age and crackling a little as the binding is strained, I find “Happy Birthday Gale!    Love, Shelly.”   Ahhhh…what memories.

In years past, this was my ‘go-to’ blueberry muffin recipe.  I must confess that now this one has taken first place.  Nonetheless, it was great to take a trip down memory lane with this blueberry muffin.

Country Style Muffins – Blueberry version
(adapted from the book “Country Tastes” by Beatrice Ojakangas)

Mix dry ingredients together:
2 c all purpose flour
1/3 c + 2 T granulated sugar
1 T baking powder
1/2 t salt

In separate bowl, mix wet ingredients:
1/3 c soft butter
1 egg
1 c whole milk

Add wet to dry and mix gently, just until combined.

Gently fold in
1 c. blueberries (mine were slightly frozen; they seem to bleed into the batter less when I add them frozen)

Top muffin batter with granulated raw sugar and a few sprinkles of cocoa nibs (my touch…)

Evenly portion into 12 greased muffin tins and bake at 400 degrees F for about 20-25 minutes.

spring is in the air

my Easter basket
My Mom’s name is Esther…I always think of her every time I see or write “Easter.”  Love you, Mom.
I wish I could talk to her, but she doesn’t remember well these days.  I encourage you to really talk to your Mom…someday later you will wish you had taken the time…