Monday, January 2, 2012

recipe: semi-homemade easy peppermint brownies...

HI FRIENDS!!! Welcome back!!! How was your Christmas??? And your New Year?? Did you get lots of fun (and hopefully yummy) things and spend loads of sweet times with friends and family? Here are just a few of the wonderful items I was given over Christmas...

I got thisssssssssssssssssssssssss from a friend of my husband's. The cutest little succulent in a distressed wooden box.

And THIS!!! A new KitchenAid food processor!! I have been wanting one of these FOR YEARS...probably close to 10. This thing was SO heavy! I never knew how heavy this could be. It found its new home right along side my best friend in the kitchen, my KitchenAid mixer.

It's been so long since I've blogged I feel like I sort of need to get into the swing of things again...AHHHHH!


I want to show you guys one last Christmas-ie inspired recipe to make because once you stop there's no going back. Not going back makes me sad. I miss Christmas already :( But jeez, here we 2012. CRAZY! I canNOT believe it!

After doing the Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap, I made some new food bloggy friends! Actually a lot. Which makes me smile. There's some GREAT food bloggers out there! Anywho, I was browsing through one in particular when I saw something that sounded so delicious- Peppermint Brownies. Now she made her's from scratch- WHICH IS AWESOME...but on Christmas Eve when I made these, I HAD NO TIME to spare what-so-ever. I really didn't. I hate admitting that.

You know what else I semi-hate the recipe I adapted from her awesome version... I bought some boxed brownie mix and sort of Sandra Lee'd it up a bit by making it "Semi-Homemade". Now hear me out...I am NOT saying what so ever that buying box cake/brownie mixes are wrong in any way. What I am saying is I, personally, try to stay away from them for various reasons. One being- since I do have this here thing called- Sweet Lavender Bake Shoppe, I try to offer you guys some yummy and easy(ish) recipes you all could make at home...and I sort of feel if I started doing more mix-based recipes...I might lose some credibility. Two- my family would shun me (having gone to culinary school and being a pastry chef, blah blah) if I showed up with my Betty Crocker Brownies. So, I guess now the cat's out of the bag...which is fine. Let the shunning begin!!! ;)

No they really wouldn't actually. My mom's probably reading this and huffing that I even dare think or say that for you all to read. But it did make for a funny part of the blog, and that's awesome. But Mom...I'm sorry.

Now in all seriousness, I actually do like box cake/brownie mix. I also think for those...uh...baking allows a sort of baking creativity to happen for everyone. Which is awesome. I know a few people who can not bake for the life of them, so being able to doll up a mix and add their own special touches and still call it their brownie/cake/pie/whatever, is a really good thing. Not to mention, when I was a wee-baker I too dabbled in the mix versions adding whatever I could find to the mix so I could call it my own. MOVING ON.

Getting that center piece was amazingly hard fun.
So anyway, I saw this delicious looking peppermint brownie recipe on my new bloggy friend's site and couldn't help but make it for my family Christmas gathering. Thing was, like I said earlier- I had zero, zip, nada time to make one from scratch. So I ran to le Target (said in a French accent) grabbed the first box of brownie mix I could find, some York peppermint patties, and headed home to "bake" away!

I hope you guys will try it!! Love it!! And forgive me for this one mix-based post ;)

Easy Peppermint Brownies
Adapted from Completely Delicious
Makes one dozen 2"x2" brownies

  • 1 box chocolate fudge brownie mix
  • 1/4 cup brewed and chilled coffee
  • 1/2 cup vegetable or canola oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 12 York peppermint patties, slightly squished with fingers to flatten out
  1. Preheat oven to 350*F.
  2. Grease a 7x11" pan (but feel free to use the standard 9x13- 7x11 is what I had on hand :) Set aside.
  3. Mix all your wet ingredients together. Set aside.
  4. In a large bowl sift the brownie mix. This takes a little bit of time, but makes, I think, a better textured brownie.
  5. Add the wet mix to your dry mix and whisk together until combined.
  6. Pour 1/3 of the batter into bottom of greased pan. 
  7. Add flattened out York peppermint patties to batter in pan. DO NOT press down.
  8. Pour remaining 2/3 of batter into pan making sure to cover all York pieces.
  9. Bake for 35-40 minutes, or until slightly puffed in middle. 
  10. Remove and let sit room temperature until you can't take it anymore and frantically eat.
**Adding coffee in place of the water creates a richer tasting brownie.
**I chose to flatten out York patties because I didn't want the thick white part of the patty to show. I wanted, a more homogenized looking brownie with a subtle hint of peppermint ;)

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