Heavenly Brownies

You are going out to a friends for dinner and you volunteered to bring dessert and you are running out of time for anything creative and out of the ordinary.  There is a box of brownie mix in your cupboard but do you really want to resort to a box of preservatives and flavorings?  Here is my go to recipe, given to me by a friend who is a very good cook.

They are call Heavenly Brownies and the name couldn’t be more appropriate.  They are heavenly simple to make and heavenly delicious to eat.  What makes them so simple is that I make the batter in a saucepan, pour it into a foil lined 9×9 inch square pan for easy clean up and pop it in the oven.  The recipe is as follows:

Line a 9″x9″ square pan with foil, up the sides.  Spray with baking spray. Set aside.  Melt a stick of butter or margerine in a saucepan with 2 squares of semi sweet chocolate.  Remove from heat and pour in 1 cup of sugar, mix.  Next add 2 large eggs one at a time, mixing well after each.  Add 1/2 cup flour with 1/2 tsp of baking powder, again mix well. Lastly add 1 tsp of vanilla and beat with a wooden spoon until batter is smooth. Pour into the foil lined greased pan.  Bake in a 350 degree oven for 20 mins, check, do not over bake!!  If the center still feel really undone bake a few more minutes.  The brownies will continue to bake even when you take them out of the oven to cool so don’t leave in the oven too long.  When cool, lift foil out of pan, slice and serve or store in airtight container. Recycle the foil and put the pan away for easy clean up.

After you make this recipe, you will throw those brownie mixes out!

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Bakery themed bridal shower

Bridal Showers can be a lot of fun or they can be deadly.  The deadly description was what we were trying to avoid when my daughter and I were planning her sister’s bridal shower.  The bride loves to bake so her very clever sister thought that a baking theme would be appropriate.  She designed these invites (with help from pinterest) tied up with bakery twine and enclosed a recipe card to be returned at the shower.  From the invites we had our color scheme – pastels – yellow, pink, violet, and green. 

For favors, we continued with our bakery theme making vanilla using vodka and vanilla beans and letting it “steep” for 8-10 weeks.  We purchased brown 4 oz bottles, labeled them and tied them up with the bakers twine.  For the tables, we “painted” clear glass cake plates with a mixture of mod podge and food coloring and sprayed them with white glitter. Each were the one of the pastels of our theme and we made pies to act as centerpieces which would later be used for the dessert: yellow – lemon meringue; pink – strawberry rhubarb; green – key lime; purple – blueberry; white – apple.  Pastel sprinkles were sprinkled on the table cloth like confetti and completed the table design.

Because the bride did not want to open gifts a solution had to be found.  Our remedy was that as the guests arrived, their gifts were taken by the bridesmaids, unwrapped, labeled and displayed.  They then were escorted to the far end of the room where they were served mimosas and appetizers and asked to contribute an idea to the date night jar. Some were later read during the meal. The following poem explains the activity:

Many married couples don’t seem to date

Their social lives pause, then tend to stagnate

Their lives get busy, time travels on

They get old and lethargic and often withdrawn

But Tyler and Katie will be wedded soon

And their last date cannot be their honeymoon.

So think long and hard as to what you would do

If given the chance for a fun rendezvous.

Take pink, green or YELLOW and write a suggestion

That will answer their challenging date night question.

PINK:  AT HOME DATE NIGHT IDEAS

GREEN: INEXPENSIVE DATE NIGHTS

YELLOW:  DATE NIGHTS THAT REQUIRE SOME CASH AND PLANNING

 

The meal was a simple buffet of assorted sandwiches, seasonal soup and salad and condiments.  Between the meal and coffee and dessert, a lips and mustache game was played where the guests were requested to guess who said what from a list of questions that were given to the bride and groom.  It didn’t require a lot of work and the guests learned more about the couple.  In the meantime, the pies were taken from the tables and cut and the guests were invited to sample them over coffee.  Leftovers were encouraged to be taken home. Since time was not taken for opening the gifts, concluding activities were to help the bride to write her vows,  to read some of the date night suggestions and perusing the gifts.The shower was only 2 hours long but was plenty of time to allow for visiting, catching up and visiting with the bride.  All in all, a successful and fun time.