Tag Archives: brownies

Raw vegan brownie bites- surprisingly delicious

27 Jul

These kind of taste like those brownie bites you buy in the plastic container from the store.  I spent awhile procrastinating the other day and reading up about the raw diet and blogs by raw foodies.  I find it super interesting though not something I would do myself.  I especially like the way people have ‘hacked’ non-raw foodstuffs out of raw ingredients (is that the correct usage of the word ‘hack’?  It’s a verb, right?)

Anyway, let’s throw this together real fast.  I’m going to Turkey and Greece with my two best friends from college this afternoon (as of me writing this, so I’m probably in Turkey/Greece as of you reading this), and I still need to finish packing.  Luckily, this post will be short and making these brownie bites takes maybe 90 seconds.  More if you’re like me and had trouble opening the package of dates.

I wonder if the raw food diet is popular in North Carolina.  Probably not, despite the capitol's name.

I wonder if the raw food diet is popular in North Carolina. Probably not, despite the capitol’s name.

Also I did this because it is HOT IN CHICAGO and I didn’t want to turn on an oven.  Brownies are totally baked goods and hence this fits in this blog.

Food processors are wonderful!  Pulse your pecans til they’re real fine:

What if you named your bag of pecans "mickey"?  Then you could sing: Oh mickey you so fine, you so fine you blow my mind hey mickey!

What if you named your bag of pecans “mickey”? Then you could sing: Oh mickey you so fine, you so fine you blow my mind hey mickey!

Next add your dates.  I had trouble measuring out a “cup” of dates but I think 10-12 is the right number.  Don’t forget to de-pit them!

I pity da fool who hasn't tried dates

I pity da fool who hasn’t tried dates

Man mickey is pretty fly.  Check out all of his dates!

Man mickey is pretty fly. Check out all of his dates!

Pulse that until it’s gloopy (maybe 40 seconds).  I paused before that and looked and it wasn’t gloopy yet (you want the dates to be crushed enough that the mixture sticks to itself).

They're great candidates: these dates are known for their can-do attitude and stick-to-ittiveness.

They’re great candidates: these dates are known for their can-do attitude and stick-to-ittiveness.

Now add your cocoa powder, shredded coconut, salt, and sweetener if you’re using it.  This happened the last time I wanted to make chocolate cake: realized that I have no cocoa powder at home (d’oh) so I used hot chocolate mix and didn’t add sweetener.  It’s probably not actually raw since I used the mix and it’s been processed, but close enough.  It’s like when I made those “vegan” cookies and used butter (but I did not feed them to any vegans).  These brownie bites did not get fed to any raw foodists.

2013-07-11_18-57-30_901

Yo dog I heard you were making brownies. I dig it. Whirred. (it sounds like word get it get it???)

This gets pulsed for another 30 seconds, until it smells and looks chocolatey brown.  Then scoop them out by tablespoons, dip them in cocoa powder, and toss ’em in the fridge.  They’re pretty crumbly/hard to handle so you could also put them in the fridge for an hour first and then shape them.  It worked out OK and they were a hit at the dinner party!

Sorry no close up, but here’s a picture of me with my new haircut.

IMG_8283

Recipe from The Rawtarian:

1 c pecans

1 c dates

5 TB cocoa powder

4 TB shredded coconut

2 TB honey (I didn’t use this because of the cocoa powder thing.  Also my coconut was sweetened whoops)

1/4 tsp sea salt

 

Process pecans until crumbly.  Add dates, and process until sticky.  Then add everything else and process for awhile, until chocolatey.  Scoop with a tablespoon, roll in cocoa powder or powdered sugar, and put on a plate in the fridge for an hour.  

This made something like 16 brownie bites, which I ended up cutting in half because they were so rich.  The website says it makes six small servings, which makes me think vegans eat a LOT.

Bonus baking: birthday brownies

20 Jan

Last night I went to two birthday parties.  The first was a dinner and house party, while the second was a bar crawl.  So I figured I’d bring these bomb brownies to share at the first one.  Little did I know that I’d memorize the recipe, and then drunkenly recreate these for the second party, which ended up back at my house for awhile.

Generally, I don’t like brownies so much.  I find them too rich, and I’m not a big chocolate fan.  But I’m in the far minority on this, so whenever I’m baking and assured that I won’t have to eat most of the baked goods, I like to make brownies.  Plus they’re super easy and you only have to clean a single pot, a spatula/wooden spoon, and a knife (for cutting) at the end.

All I had to buy from the store were mini-marshmallows (sorry I forgot to take an ingredients photo).  Here’s the shopping list if you don’t have everything else in your pantry:

Things you have: Butter, eggs, flour, salt, baking powder, vanilla

Things you might need: Peanut butter, mini marshmallows, chocolate chips, rice krispies

Also I forgot about my blog until halfway through the process.  Step one: melt butter.  I feel like all good things I make start with melting butter (breakfast, baked goods, barbecue… okay I’ll stop with the gratuitous alliteration now, promise).  Mix in your cup of sugar, bit of vanilla, two eggs.

Technically you should whisk together your flour, baking powder, and salt before adding them in to the pot, but that would take away from the glory of only having to clean one dish.  Just make sure you mix well.

These ingredients really dry-ve the recipe forward

These ingredients really dry-ve the recipe forward

Using a whisk is the smart way to mix in those ingredients so you don’t get little pockets of baking powder or salt in the batter.  Therefore, I used a spatula.

IMG_20130119_163319_556

The spat-u-la? More like the spat-I-LOVE!

Then you USE THE BROWNIES SECRET.  I cannot stress this enough.  Just as the silpat is the secret so you don’t have to wash your cookie sheets (though I did for those scones, which were way fatty and oozed butter onto the sheet), aluminum foil or parchment paper is the way to not wash your brownie pan/roasting pan/pyrex.  Also, it is way hard to get those edge pieces of brownie out from the sides of a pan.  With the foil trick you LIFT the brownies out and everything’s easy peasy!

First, here’s my schematic:foil rickYou use two pieces of foil, both a little bit bigger than the pan.  Lay the first one down across the pan and wrap the overhang.  Then lay the second one transversely.  This is magical.

This link has a much better diagram if the MSPaint didn’t convince you: http://www.thekitchn.com/easy-lifting-using-aluminum-fo-62733.  I also have a photo of myself attempting this.

I was FOILED from taking a good picture.

I was FOILED from taking a good picture.

So throw your batter in there, and bake at 375 for 17-19 minutes.  You *don’t* want to fully bake the brownies, because you’re going to take them out and throw MINI MARSHMALLOWS on them.  I love using marshmallows.  They’re just so cute and fluffy.

It's always marshmallow, marshmallow, marshmallow!  What about Jan-mallow?

It’s always marshmallow, marshmallow, marshmallow! What about Jan-mallow?

The recipe I used says two cups, I say just throw on some handfuls until you’re almost covered.  Then bake for another 5 minutes until they’re all puffed up and beautiful and maaaaybe just starting to get toasty brown on top.

There's nothing you and I won't do.  I'll stop the oven and melt with you!

There’s nothing you and I won’t do. I’ll stop the oven and melt with you!

Use your trusty spatula to smear those marshmallows around to cover any holes, then put the whole pan outside where it’s 18 degrees outside.  Or put it in your fridge.  It’ll take longer to cool in the fridge.

Meanwhile, clean your single pot so you can use it again to make the crispy topping.  I’m poor-ish, so I usually buy generic everything and rarely know the difference.  Know this, internet: there is a HUGE difference between Rice Krispies and the grocery store’s generic puffed rice.  I try to make up for the difference by throwing the puffed rice in the toaster oven for a few minutes, and that helps a lot.  You just want the crispiness, or else your puffed rice sort of sogs into the melted chocolate and everything is bad.

Anyways.  Melt your butter again, just a bit, and once that’s melted, turn off the heat.  You’ll throw in 2/3 c chocolate chips and 1/2 c peanut butter.

Do you prefer chunky or creamy?  I guess it doesn't matter if you spit rather than... wait.  I meant.  Yay peanut butter!  This caption is a new, very disgusting low.

Do you prefer chunky or creamy? I guess it doesn’t matter if you spit rather than… wait. I meant. Yay peanut butter! This caption is a new, very disgusting low.

I’m really good at reading, so I used my 1/3 c measure for the peanut butter first.  Heaping more on top makes it about 1/2 c, right?

I added extra chips- just choc it up to intuition

I added extra chips- just choc it up to intuition

Mix in the chocolate chips until they’ve melted from the residual heat of the pan and the butter.  There’s no need to have the heat on for this part.

IMG_20130119_165936_769

If I have other, better pots, but keep using this one, does that count as nePOTism?

Then mix in the peanut butter.

If I was baking with a friend named Reese, I'd have him stir so I could say Reese is piecing it all together right here.

If I was baking with a friend named Reese, I’d have him stir so I could say Reese is piecing it all together right here.

Once that’s all smooth, add in your toasted puffed rice krispie-wannabe stuff, and mix that up fast.

Check out this spatula while my baker revolves it.  Rice, rice baby.

Check out this spatula while my baker revolves it. Rice, rice baby.

Now you can spread this deliciousness on your cooled brownies.  You just want it so the marshmallow goo sets enough to not melt into the topping while you’re spreading.

I like this photo uploader.  Ooey GUI.

I like this photo uploader. Ooey GUI.

Throw this outside again while you’re washing the single pot and spatula.  Then LIFT your aluminum foil flaps and voila, you haven’t lost any brownie to the corners of the pan.  And the pan is clean!  In my case, I then wrapped the whole thing in parchment paper and foil, and biked it off to the party.  I recommend using a buttered knife to cut through the marshmallow/rice layer on top.

It's very important to stretch before strenuous activities, like marathon eating sessions

It’s very important to stretch before strenuous activities, like marathon eating sessions

The second time I made these, I threw the peanut butter in with the first pot of melted butter and had peanut butter brownies topped with marshmallows and chocolate chips.  Too lazy to make the topping.  Still good!

I’d like to experiment with sea salt and/or cayenne/chipotle brownies.  Let me know if you have any good recipes or ideas for those.

Here’s the recipe, adapted from a website that I can’t find right now (will update later):

Melt:

1/2 c butter

Turn off heat, and mix in

1 c sugar

2 tsp vanilla

2 eggs

Then add

1/2 c flour

1/2-1 tsp salt

1-2 tsp baking powder (honestly I used a “spatula-full” and it worked out fine)

Bake in a 375 oven for 17-19 minutes.

Take out of oven, sprinkle with

2 c mini marshmallows

and continue baking for 5 minutes.  Chill.

Meanwhile, make topping.

Melt:

2 TB butter

Turn off heat, and stir in

2/3 c chocolate chips

1/2 c peanut butter

1 c Rice Krispies

Spread this on your chilled marshmallow brownies.  Chill for at least an hour to give the chocolate time to firm up.  Enjoy!

 

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