I’ve learned while being out on maternity leave that there aren’t many things worth watching on daytime tv. You’ve got daytime talk shows, home improvement shows, and then there’s soaps of course. With not much to choose from, I’ve found myself watching Food Network a lot during the day while I’m just sitting and feeding Drew. And trust me, I do a lot of just sitting and feeding Drew. Try every two hours! He’s a hungry boy.

Anyway, while watching Food Network I’ve started making a list of new recipes I’d like to try. Several of the recipes have come from one of my favorite cooks, Ina Garten. I look forward to watching her show every day, Barefoot Contessa, because everything she makes always looks divine and she makes it all seem so effortless. Plus I think she and her husband are cute as a button. I saw this recipe on her show the other day and it really made my sweet tooth ache. When I finally got out to go the store yesterday I got all the ingredients to make it and baked it last night for dessert. It turned out so good but as Ina would say, what could be bad about brownies? I think this recipe has a deeper, richer, more chocolaty flavor than some brownie recipes I’ve made. The only thing that could probably make it better is some creamy vanilla ice cream.


Brownie Tart

6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter

3 1/4 cups (20 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips

3 extra-large eggs

1 cup sugar

1 tablespoon instant coffee granules

1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1/4 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1 cup (4 ounces) chopped walnuts

2 to 3 tablespoons heavy cream

Grease and flour a 9-inch tart pan with removable sides. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.


Melt the butter in a bowl set over simmering water. Add 2 cups of the chocolate chips, remove from the heat, and stir until the chocolate melts. Set aside to cool completely.


In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the eggs, sugar, coffee, and vanilla on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Stir in the cooled chocolate. In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, salt, 1 cup of the chocolate chips, and the walnuts. Fold the flour mixture into the batter until just combined. Pour into the pan and bake for 35 to 40 minutes, until the center is puffed (the top may crack). The inside will still be very soft. Cool to room temperature before removing the sides of the tart pan.


Melt the remaining 1/4 cup of chocolate chips with the heavy cream and drizzle on the tart. (I omitted)

Source: Food Network


Brownies: Take Two

March 20, 2008


As I was starting to write this post tonight, I realized that my last post was also about brownies. I promise I really have made real food since my last post, just nothing very interesting. Other than that I have no real reason why my last two posts are about brownies other than P-M-S. Yep, those three letters can cause you to have some weird cravings. Too bad I’m not craving anything healthy. Oh well.

I was recently very flattered to receive an “E for Excellent” award on Cynthia Matzat’s blog. That’s how I first discovered her blog and some of her yummy recipes. One recipe on her blog caught my eye and it was this peanut butter brownie recipe. So when PMS rared its ugly head tonight, I knew it was the time to try out this recipe. I was not disappointed. These were so good! I added a 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips to the peanut butter batter because I just needed to have some chocolate. Thanks Cynthia for the award and for this great recipe!

Peanut Butter Brownies


5 tablespoons butter
1 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup peanut butter
1/4 teaspoon baking powder

(I added half a cup of semi sweet chocolate chips to the batter)


In a 3-quart pan over low heat, heat butter until melted. Remove from heat and stir in sugar, eggs, vanilla, flour, peanut butter, and baking powder until smoothly blended. Evenly spread batter in a buttered and floured 8-inch square pan. Bake in 350°F oven until edges feel firm to touch and begin to turn a shade darker, 25 to 30 minutes (but can take up to 40 minutes, depending on your oven). Run a knife between pan rim and baked brownie. Cool in pan on a rack. Cut into squares.

Heaven in a Brownie

March 10, 2008

Mmm, here’s one recipe that combines two of my favorite kinds of desserts; brownies and cheesecake. My husband is the inspiration for me making these heavenly brownies. He started talking about cheesecake brownies yesterday and I realized I had not made these in years. In fact, the last time I made them they were from a box. 😛 So I asked my friends over at What’s Cooking for some suggestions and got some great recipes. I decided on this one from Baking Blonde. I can always count on her for great dessert recipes. I will say that the brownie part of this recipe is really thick and kinda of hard to work with but it was well worth it. They turned out so great!

Ghirardelli Award Winning Brownies
2 eggs
3/4 cup sugar
1 tsp pure vanilla
1/2 cup butter, melted
3/4 cup Ghirardelli Sweet Ground Chocolate and Cocoa (3/4 cup Hershey’s unsweetened cocoa powder)
2/3 cup unsifted flour
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup walnuts (I did not use)
1 cup Chocolate Chips (I used 1/2 semi sweet and 1/2 milk chocolate chips)

Preheat oven to 350.
Line 8×8 pan with foil and spray with PAM.
In bowl, stir together the eggs, sugar and vanilla. Add butter.
Sift Cocoa powder, flour, baking powder and salt. Stir into egg mixture.
Stir in chips (and nuts if using).

**Spread into pan and bake for 20-30 minutes until toothpick inserted in center comes out with a few crumbs.
Cheesecake Swirled Brownies

**If making cheesecake swirled brownies, use recipe above but only spread 2/3 batter into pan. Dollup cream cheese mixture over brownie batter in pan.
Dollup the remainin 1/3 batter on top of cheesecake mixture.
Run a knife through the brownie and cheesecake layers to create a pattern or swirls.
Bake in preheated oven for 25 minutes or until toothpick comes out with a few crumbs when inserted. Do NOT overbake

Cheesecake Swirl
7 oz cream cheese, softened
1/3 cup sugar
2 TBS flour
1 tsp pure Vanilla
1 egg

In bowl combine cream cheese, sugar, flour and vanilla beat until smooth. Add egg and beat just until combined.


Better than the box!

May 31, 2007

We had no sweets in the house tonight so I decided I had to bake. Well my go to dessert is brownies. I admit, I have always been a boxed brownie kinda girl. That is, until I discovered this recipe. I will never go back to the box!

Chewy Cocoa Brownies
(recommended by nestie Soon2BMrsN)

1 2/3 c. sugar
3/4 c. melted butter or margarine
2 tbsp. water 
2 large eggs
2 tsp. vanilla
1 1/3 c. flour
3/4 c. baking cocoa powder
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
3/4 c. chopped nuts
1/2 c. mini chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350. Grease 13x9 pan.

Combine sugar, butter, and water in large bowl.Stir 
in eggs and vanilla.
Combine flour, cocoa, baking powder, and salt in medium 
bowl. Stir flour mixture into sugar mixture. Add nuts 
and chocolate chips. Spread into prepared pan.

Bake for 18 to 25 minutes, or until wooden pick inserted 
comes out slightly sticky.
Makes 12 servings.

*I prefer my brownies without nuts so I ommit those.
Also, I was out of chocolate chips so I didn't add those either. 
It's a great basic brownie recipe even without 
those two ingredients.