fudgey brownies

Okay, here’s the thing: When I’m having a bad day, or a bad week, or a bad month, chocolate makes me feel better. It does. Today I really, really, really needed chocolate, and when my daughter offered to make brownies, well, that was the answer to a prayer if you ask me.

I’m a brownie fan, but not just any brownie will do. For me, a brownie must be gooey and have a crispy “crust”. This recipe was a new one for us, and it may be my new favorite. Wonderfully soft and gooey on the inside, with the perfect amount of flaky exterior.

(*Note: I cut this recipe out of a magazine years ago, added it to my recipe binder, and that’s where it sat until today. After doing some research I found it came from Hershey’s.)

The brownie in the above photo measured 3×4-inches, and though I would have enjoyed every bite of it, I did not eat the whole thing. A few bites of this delicious brownie were enough to satisfy my chocolate craving, and to remind me that even when things seem to be going wrong at every turn, there are some good things in life, such as daughters who enjoy baking, and chocolate.

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Fudgey Brownies

3/4 cup cocoa

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

2/3 cup butter, melted and divided

1/2 cup boiling water

2 cups sugar

2 eggs

1 1/3 cups flour

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 cup semi-sweet or dark chocolate chips (*we used semi-sweet)

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Heat oven to 350F.

Grease a 9×13-inch pan (or use a silicone liner or parchment paper on the bottom).

Stir together the cocoa and baking soda in large mixer bowl.

Stir in half of the butter.

Add boiling water an stir slowly until mixture thickens.

Stir in sugar and the eggs, and then the remaining half of the butter. Stir until smooth.

Add flour, vanilla and salt. Blend completely.

Stir in the chocolate chips.

Pour into prepared pan.

Bake 35 to 40 minutes (*we needed the full 40 minutes). The brownies will begin to pull away from the sides of the pan.

Cool completely in pan on a wire rack.

breakfast muffins

The last post was from a link my daughter found. Remember? I mentioned how she emailed me with the subject line “YUM” and three links to recipes. This is the second link on the list. It’s a muffin recipe (here’s the link to where she found it), and we have no idea why the original has the word “French” in the title. Nor do we understand why they are called “breakfast” muffins. First of all, isn’t it common to serve different kinds of muffins at breakfast? And isn’t it also true that you can eat muffins at any time of the day? Yes, and yes. So maybe they are breakfast muffins because they taste very good with a cup of coffee served at breakfast. And maybe they originally were considered French because the person who first made them was from France? We may never know.

My daughter has made these twice. The second time she doubled the recipe, which is the one below, because doing all that work for 8 or 10 muffins seemed silly. I’ve also made a few changes/alterations to have it read better (I’m a stickler for listing ingredients in the order they are used in each recipe).

We really like these muffins. This recipe is a winner! Awesome addition to my morning coffee (or afternoon coffee … or evening coffee).

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Breakfast Muffins

Muffin ingredients:

1 cup sugar

3 cups all purpose flour

3 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

1 cup milk

2/3 cup butter, melted

2 eggs

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Topping ingredients:

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 cup sugar

1/4 cup butter, melted

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Heat oven to 350F.

In a mixer bowl, sift together all dry ingredients. Add wet ingredients and mix slowly until combined (may be a bit lumpy). Don’t over mix.

Line muffin tins with paper liners (makes about 20 muffins).

Distribute batter into the lined cups.

Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until they just start to turn a bit golden at the edges.

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For the topping, stir together the cinnamon and the sugar in a small bowl.

Dip the warm muffins in the melted butter (we dipped just the top … we considered attempting to dip the whole muffin, but it was a bit too messy), then dip/roll the buttered section of the muffin in the cinnamon sugar mixture.

Make a pot of coffee and enjoy. ­čÖé