Monday, January 3, 2011

Peppermint Candy Cane Brownies

I bought all the ingredients to make these for our Christmas dinner at Melissa's, butI ran out of time.  Yesterday when I ran across the ingredients I thought I would humor myself and make them, since I got jipped (gypped?) out of any holiday baking.  I am happy to report they turned out just like this and they taste even better than they look!  On the glorious there is a great, step-by-step, photo tutorial.  I followed all their directions.  It takes a little time, mainly to refrigerate between layers, but otherwise it's easy and so worth it.  Your'e Welcome!!!
4 squares unsweetened chocolate (4oz)
1 C butter (2 sticks)
4 eggs
2 cups sugar
1t vanilla
1 1/4 C flour
1/2 t baking powder

2 C powdered sugar
4 T butter, softened
1 1/2 t peppermint extract (I only used 1/2 tsp)
1 T milk
pink food coloring

Chocolate Glaze:
6 oz (about a cup) semi-sweet chocolate chips
6 T real butter

1/2-1 C crushed candy canes (Use Bob's NOT Spanglers!) 
 6 candy canes = ½ cup (6 oz. box of 12)

First, the Brownies:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.The chocolate you want is baking chocolate, which is sold in bars by the chocolate chips. Make sure it is unsweetened. Give those squares a rough chop so they'll be easier to melt.
Then place them in a microwave-safe bowl along with the 2 sticks of butter (also chopped).  Melt in 30-45 second intervals, stirring in between, until melted and smooth. Set aside. Don't accidentally stick your finger in the melted butter and chocolate combo because it will laugh at you for forgetting that it is unsweetened.

In a stand mixer or with electric beaters, beat eggs for about 3 minutes until thick and frothy.  Add sugar and vanilla and beat to combine. Then add in the melted chocolate and butter that you set aside. Combine flour and baking powder and whisk into brownie batter by hand until just combined. Pour into a lightly greased 9x13 pan. If you want to make the job much easier, line your pan with foil first.

Bake for 20-25 minutes. Test with a toothpick for doneness and don't over bake! When brownies are done, cool on a cooling rack. When completely cool, pop in the fridge to chill. (makes the frosting spreading easier)

Next layer is the frosting:
Combine all frosting ingredients and beat until light and fluffy. Add extra milk by teaspoonful if you need a little more. Spread evenly over cooled/chilled brownies and place back in the fridge to chill again while you do the final step.

Chocolate Glaze:
Place chocolate chips and butter in a microwave-safe bowl and cook in 30 second intervals until smooth.Set aside for a few minutes, stirring occasionally, so it can cool off just a bit. Remember in the first step when I told you to not accidentally let your finger fall in the chocolate butter mixture? Totally doesn't apply to this chocolate butter mixture. Quickly spread on top of brownies. I say quickly because the frosting is cool and the chocolate is hot. If you take your sweet time and overdo it, you'll make a big gooey mess. Just spread it on quick.

Sprinkle the crushed candy canes on top and return to the fridge until chocolate is set on top.

Remove from fridge a few minutes before serving. Cut into squares, eat, ooh and ahh, and then eat another one. Or two.  ( I would wait another 30 minutes or so to serve them when they are at room temp).

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