Saturday, July 18, 2009

Peanut Butter Cup Brownies

They are as good as they look.

I saw these quite some time ago on Bake or Break and then again on Nosh and Tell and I knew I had to make them. If you have been following my blog, you know I love anything chocolate and peanut butter and so does my boyfriend Zack. He and I went to visit his parents for the 4th of July and I always like to bring some kind of baked good with me when we visit. I always bring Buckeyes at Christmas and they go crazy for them. Actually, I made some last Christmas and believe it or not I forgot to take pictures and blog about them! Don't worry, I will not forget this Christmas. Anyway, I knew Zack's family would love these. When these brownies were on Bake or Break and Nosh and Tell they made the brownie batter from scratch. I took the easy way out and used Ghiradelli Double Chocolate Brownie Mix. I personally think it is the best box mix you can get and can easily beat some "from scratch" recipes. This recipe also was written to make 12 servings using a muffin tin. I went ahead and made them in a mini-muffin tin and it made 40 brownies! When you decide to make these (and you will decide to make these) do what works for you.

Peanut Butter Cup Brownies
Recipe adapted from Nestle’s Very Best Baking

Makes 40 brownies as adapted

1 box of your favorite brownie mix
1/2 cup peanut butter chips
1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
3/4 cup creamy peanut butter

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray or grease 40 mini-muffin cups.

Prepare boxed brownie mix as directed. Spoon batter evenly into muffin cups (about 1 heaping teaspoon). Bake for 13-15 minutes or until top is set and a toothpick inserted into center comes out slightly wet. After brownies are out of the oven, wait for centers to fall. This will happen upon cooling. If not then tap the centers with the back of a teaspoon to make a hole for the peanut butter.

Place peanut butter in a small microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on high for 45 seconds then stir. While brownies are still warm spoon about half a teaspoon of peanut butter into the center of each brownie. Top with semi-sweet chocolate chips and peanut butter chips. Cool completely in pan.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

White Chocolate Chip Macadamia Nut Blondies

Better late than never.

Sorry for the delay in getting this post up. Like most of you I have been busy this summer. I just got back in town from West Virginia and had a wonderful time with my boyfriend's family. You should all be happy to hear that I got the best chocolate peanut butter dessert recipe from my boyfriend's mom and plan to make it as soon as I have company. For the time being this will have to hold you over. I saw this recipe quite some time ago on The Crepes of Wrath. You should go visit her site right now because it is fantastic and I love everything she posts. I had been wanting to make this for a while, but I kept forgetting to get white chocolate chips. I finally got around to getting the white chocolate chips and when I went to make these I did not have enough macadamia nuts. I did not want to wait any longer so I just substituted half of the macadamia nuts with walnuts and they turned out great. I definitely recommend you trying them and in case you are also out of macadamia nuts, walnuts work great!

White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Blondies
from The Crepes of Wrath

1/2 pound (1 cup) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 1/2 cups light brown sugar
2 eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
2 cups white chocolate chips
1 cup macadamia nuts, toasted and roughly chopped

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Chop your macadamia nuts and place them on a baking sheet. Toast in a 350 degree F oven for 5-10 minutes, until golden and fragrant. Allow to cool before using. Cream the butter and brown sugar on medium speed until a smooth batter is formed (this should take 3-5 minutes). While the machine is running, add the eggs, the vanilla extract, and almond extract, until incorporated into the batter. Combine the flour, salt, and baking powder in a medium bowl. Slowly add the flour mixture to the batter and mix on low speed just until a dough is formed. Either by hand or with a big spoon or spatula, fold the nuts and chips into the dough. Once the dough is all blended, line and/or grease a 9 x 13-inch baking pan with Pam. Spread the batter into the pan with a greased spatula or just use your hands to press the dough in and place in the preheated oven. Bake for 30-35 minutes, until set and lightly golden. Allow to cool completely in the pan before cutting. Store in an air-tight container.