So the first time I saw anything about the Brownie Babe's I knew I had to take part. I have been ignoring my brownie cravings for a long time, but I had been strong enough, and it was about damn time I gave in. I just don't think it gets any better than brownies. Brownies are the perfect indulgence in my book, chocolatey, dense, and just begging for nuts to join the party.
Of course I knew I would be adding peanut butter to my recipe, but what else could I add to make them just a little more special? I pondered it for a few days, and then I remember my recent life-altering encounter with Cinnamon Raisin Swirl
I was going to make Peanut Butter Cinnamon Brownies!!!
First I found a basic brownie recipe, which I altered a bit (I will note them), because adding peanut butter to a recipe doesn't make it any more low-fat. This recipe is from epicurious.com.
ingredients2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter (I used 1/2 cup applesauce in place of 1 stick of butter)
8 oz fine-quality bittersweet chocolate (not unsweetened), coarsely chopped
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour (Whole Wheat)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups sugar (1 cup granulated sugar, 1/2 cup Splenda brown sugar)
4 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
5 oz walnut pieces, coarsely chopped (1 1/2 cups) (Omitted these)
preparationPut oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 350° F. Grease a 9-inch square baking pan (2 inches deep) and line bottom and sides with wax pap er, then butter paper.
Melt butter and chocolate in a medium heatproof
bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water, stirring occasionally, until smooth.
Whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt in a small bowl
Whisk together sugar, eggs, and vanilla in a large bowl, then pour in chocolate mixture, whisking until combined well. Whisk in flour mixture, then
stir in walnuts and transfer batter to baking pan.
Okay this is where I went my own way. I used an 11 x 7 pan, and I transferred only half of the batter to the baking pan. I then baked for 20 minutes. While it was baking, I made a filling using
1 Cup Natural Peanut Butter
3 T. Honey
2 T. Milk
Cinnamon to taste
I tried making the above mixture over low heat in a saucepan, but it got all weird and dry on me. So I removed from the heat, added more milk and honey until it was a smooth consistency. Then I spread it on the aforementioned half-baked brownies. On top of the filling I sprinkled dry-roasted peanuts, and some leftover chocolate chips.
Finally I put the remaining batter over top, and baked for about 25 more minutes.
Bake until top is shiny and set and sides have begun to pull away slightly (a wooden pick or skewer will not come out clean), about 35 minutes, for fudgy brownies; or until wooden pick or skewer comes out clean, 50 minutes to 1 hour total, for cakey brownies.
Cool brownies completely in pan on a rack. Invert onto a cutting board, remove paper, and cut into squares. (I allowed my brownies to cool over night. I LOVED the fudgy texture the next day)
• Cooled brownies keep, layered between sheets of wax paper, in an airtight container at room temperature 2 days. We find the flavor to be even better after 1 day.
Gourmet, October 2003
Adapted from Carla RollinsLast but not least, I pondered the question, "Would frosting be too much?" In my mind though, frosting is never TOO MUCH!! So I set out to find a cinnamon frosting, and I found it here
Fabulous. This is everything I could have asked for. If I changed anything it would be to make a more chocolatey frosting. But nothing is too rich for me. In the words of my ever so eloquent brother, "Yah, these are good."
Also got rave reviews from my mother's co-workers.