Sunday, January 30, 2011

homemade brownies

Recent adventures with oatmeal cookies a la Betty Crocker.
I have a cookbook that I cherish. It belonged to my grandma Maisy, a gift from my grandfather in 1971. It's a bright orange Betty Crocker cookbook complete with a split spine, crooked binder rings, and newspaper clippings that my grandma tucked inside.

When I want to make something sweet, retro Betty Crocker is my go-to.

So I was flipping through the pages past my favorite buttermilk waffles, oatmeal cookies, and spice cake when I came across a recipe for brownies. Admittedly, we always use boxed brownies, but I wondered how the homemade version would stack up.

Now, I can't remember what ingredients are listed in the boxed brownies, but I assure you they are not as fresh or wholesome as these:

-4 ounces unsweetened chocolate
-2/3 cups shortening
-2 cups of sugar
-4 eggs (I only used 3 eggs and added 1 tablespoon of water)
-1 teaspoon vanilla extract
-1 1/4 cups flour
-1 teaspoon baking powder
-1 teaspoon salt
Optional: 1 cup chopped nuts (which I omitted)

Just like the store-bought ones, heat the oven to 350. Grease a 9X12 baking dish. First, melt the chocolate and shortening in a sauce pan on low heat. Then remove from heat and stir in remaining ingredients. The batter is thick, but it spreads just fine with a spatula in the baking dish. Cook uncovered for 30 minutes. Voila!

These brownies taste EXACTLY like the boxed brownies except I can pronounce everything in the recipe and I can use organic versions of each item. No preservatives, either! Time-wise, it doesn't take that much longer to make them and I already had everything in my cupboard.

If you have a sweet tooth, I highly recommend them...

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Yes, peas are delicious - and funny!

Yes, peas are delicious - and funny!
Our little guy at 15 months, February 2011.