Friday, February 6, 2009

Brownies

We have a fairly new Michel's Craft store in our city. They publish 40% coupons regularly in the newspaper, and then when you shop there, they sometimes give you another 40% off coupon a single regular price item. Most of you know, that I love a bargain, so I always try to use my coupons on necessities.

Last week, one necessity I just had to have was this cute, cute Wilton cookie cookie cutter that cuts out 2 wonky heart shapes at the same time. Looking a little closer at the package, this cookie cutter, is a brownie cutter and it says that it can be used for cutting out sandwiches too. This is neat since up until a few years back, I made brownies every week. I used a simple recipe that used stuff that I had in the house. The recipe freezes well and was no fail.

As of earlier this week, I didn't have occasion to use my new cutter and I happened to be browsing in Michael's again , and saw a nice brownie pan. My old pan was well used, but I thought, if they have brownie cookie cutters, the new Wilton brownie pan that comes with a plastic cover must be made so that the heart brownies can be cut efficiently with very little waste. So that became another necessity, and I used another 40% coupon. I was right, in this new 9" x 9" pan, I can get 6 sets of of 2 brownies, so 12 nice sized brownies, and a very small amount of scraps.

My old brownie pan was 7 x 11" and I wondered if my recipe would make enough batter. My math brain says - 7 x 11 and 9 x 9 both make 81 square inches but I had to try it today. It turns out, my recipe is perfect for this. There is the exact amount of batter, and the exact amount of icing.
Here is my pan of iced brownies. Getting ready for the first cut. It worked great, but the brownies stayed in the cutter. I had to use a fork to poke out the brownies on to the plate. A suggestion from Gail, one of our Friday coffee girls, helped. A bit of cooking spray on the cutter, and the second cut worked better. Then when you add a bit of a wiggle to the cutter, it was the final touch needed to perfect the cutting so that the hearts would stay in the pan and then I could scoop them out with a little spatula.

For those of you who asked for my brownie and icing recipe, here it is. I like this recipe, because it doesn't call for chocolate squares, or chocolate chips. Those things mysteriously disappear in his house.
By request, I'm giving more detail in the method than usual... - you know who you are!

Brownie Batter:
1/2 cup butter or margarine
1 cup sugar
3 Tbsp cocoa
2 eggs
1/2 cup walnuts (optional)
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup flour
Cream butter, sugar and egg. Add the rest of the items and stir until the flour is incorporated. Batter is a bit stiff, and there doesn't look like there's much, so no licking the spoon. Plop about 6 spoonfuls into your brownie pan, and then just flatten the batter a bit to join the plops... If you pour all the batter in the pan at once, it's hard to spread out to the corners . Bake at 350 degrees F for 20 min.
Icing:
3 Tbsp softened butter or margarine
3 Tbsp cocoa
2 Tbsp hot water
1/2 tsp vanilla
1- 1/2 cups icing sugar
Just when you take the brownies out of the oven, put all icing items in a microwavable dish. Mix by hand until a thick batter like consistency and all the icing sugar is incorporated. Microwave the icing on high for 30 seconds. Remove from microwave and stir/beat for about 10 seconds. Microwave for a further 30 seconds and watch closely for the icing to bubble up. let the icing bubble up for about 7 - 10 seconds. Remove from microwave and stir down the sides for 10 - 15 seconds. Then pour this liquidy hot icing over the warm brownies. Let stand for 1 hour to cool and give time for the icing to set into a smooth shiny brownie topping. Then use a knife or Wilton brownie cutter to cut the brownies. Yields 12 large heart brownies, or 24 smaller brownies.

1 comment:

dp said...

I love my cutter and I think it will make pretty Tea biscuits too....
Thanks for the one you bought for me, I will use it this weekend I think.. i can't really have them in my house unless there are more than just Terry and I to eat them... otherwise I eat way too many