Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Fudgy Kahlua Brownies

This past weekend I volunteered to bring dessert to a ladies-only potluck hosted by a fellow food-loving friend.  I figured some brownies with booze would go over well with a crowd of 10-12 ladies free from husbands and children for the evening.  We put out a pretty impressive dinner spread and it was a great evening.  I prefer my brownies to be fudgy, and these ones did not disappoint.  They turned out thick and rich and had excellent flavor.  I originally made the icing with 2 tablespoons of Kahlua, but it seemed a bit boozy, so the icing recipe below contains only 1 tablespoon.
Adapted from www.recipegirl.com

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 cup unsalted butter
2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 1/2 cups light brown sugar
2 large eggs
1/2 cup Kahlua (or another coffee liqueur)

3 tbsp cocoa powder
3 tbsp unsalted butter, softened
1 tbsp Kahlua
1 2/3 cups powdered sugar
2-3 tbsp milk

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 9 x 9 inch pan with foil and spray with nonstick cooking spray.

2. For the brownies:  In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt; set aside.

3. Place chocolate chips and butter in a microwave safe bowl.  Microwave for 1 minute, then stir.  Continue to microwave in 15-20 second intervals, stirring after each interval, until chips are melted and combined with the butter.  Set aside to cool a bit.

4. In a large bowl with an electric mixer, beat sugar, eggs, and 1/2 cup Kahlua until combined. Pour in chocolate mixture and beat until well mixed.  Add in dry ingredients and beat just until combined.

5. Pour batter into prepared pan.  Bake for 40-45 minutes or until top cracks slightly and toothpick inserted in center comes out mostly clean (it is okay if the bottom of the toothpick is a little gooey).  Remove brownies from oven and let them cool completely before icing.

6. For the icing: In a medium bowl with an electric mixer, beat cocoa powder, butter, and Kahlua together until combined.  Incorporate powdered sugar, adding milk as necessary to reach a smooth, spreadable consistency.

7. Spread icing over the brownies after brownies have cooled.  Chill brownies in refrigerator for at least an hour before slicing.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Peanut Butter Cup Cookies

If you like peanut butter cups then you will definitely love these cookies.  The dough is baked in mini muffin tins, and then while the dough is still warn a miniature peanut butter cup is pressed into the center.  I've also discovered that the chocolate on the top of the peanut butter cup melts, so it is really easy to throw on some festive winter (or other) decorations if you so desire.


1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup peanut butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons milk
40 miniature chocolate covered peanut butter cups (such as Reeces), unwrapped

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

2. Sift together flour, salt, and baking soda; set aside.

3. Cream together the butter, sugar, peanut butter, and brown sugar until fluffy. Beat in the egg, vanilla, and milk. Add the flour mixture and mix just until combined.

4. Shape into approximately 40 balls and place one ball in each well of a mini muffin pan.  You may have to do this in more than one batch if you don't have enough pans.

5. Bake for about 8 minutes. Remove from oven and immediately press a miniature peanut butter cup into the center of each mound of dough.  Cool and carefully remove from pan.