Hey ya’ll! Welcome back to my tiny kitchen! Been thinking about how pretty the trees are getting here in Kansas City and really wanted to bust out something equally lovely for the blog. Something beautiful, elegant and well coiffed.
Well friends of the internet, I failed at making something as gorgeous as the fall trees. However! They taste like pretty! They taste the way the trees make me feel. Disclaimer, they might not be the most amazing looking items I’ve ever shared. Also, I noticed that with the changing season comes a change in how light moves through my house. Most of these pictures are taken from my dining room table because the light was more agreeable there. We call it “Whole House Kitchen”. If we ever opened a restaurant, it’s on the short list of names. Here you go kids!
Red. Velvet. Brownies. And that is a white chocolate icing for those who like that kind of thing. 🙂 No lie. I love icing, but I know it’s not for everyone. Feel free to leave it off. Or you can use it, just don’t pile it on the way I did. Try to attempt to think about spreading it out evenly.
A twist on a classic, my dad and my hubby loved these handheld treats. You can too!
Let me show you how!
All the things for yum! Butter, sugar, flour, cocoa powder, vanilla, eggs, red food coloring (I’m sorry Alton Brown, I’m not using beets), more vanilla (the recipe adds it all split and at different times) and salt.
Sift the cocoa powder and then add the food coloring and one portion of vanilla. Stir it until no lumps remain. This honestly might take some time. Also, it’s going to be a bit like a paste. Ha! Remember that episode of Friends where Ross had the leather pants and was all sweaty and the stuff created a PASTE!? Ha!
Yeah, it’s gonna be like that.
Obviously, you’ll mix it a little more than I did. Booth was struggling with his gambling addiction and I got a little distracted. #blahblahbones
Throw the flour and salt together in a small bowl and set aside for later.
There isn’t anything wrong, we aren’t breaking up with flour, we just have other shit to do today and can’t really commit to a good conversation until later. No worries.
Next! Beat the butter until it’s all fluffy, then add sugar. Cream them together until all…well…creamy.
Add the eggs and beat until thoroughly mixed. All the sugar grains should be gone, and the mixture should be supes smooth. Throw in the remaining vanilla and give that whirl too.
Ok. Remember that cocoa mixture that was all pasty? Get that and throw it into the butter mixture. All of it. Let your Carmelita or hand mixer go on medium speed for a few minutes. Check in with Brennan and Booth. See how he is doing with his addiction. Has he gone back to his sponsor yet? Has he spoken up in group yet? All kinds of emotional things are happening you guys. Keep an eye on the batter. You’ll know it’s done when the mixture is all one color.
Slowly add the flour and salt to the batter. Mix at a low speed and scrape the bowl periodically to make sure all the flour bits are fully incorporated. Prep an 8×8 baking dish however you normally prep it and throw that luscious red batter into the dish.
Bake at 350° for 35-45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the baking dish comes out clean.
Obviously I said toothpick, but decided I needed to check with a knife. That is definitely a knife hole there. Whoops.
Ok. Important. Let these babies cool completely. I know, I know. I tout this all the time. I’m the queen of “wait for the things and stuff to cool” and then- spoiler alert- I didn’t wait long enough on these. We are going to proceed as if I have a brain in my head and actually took my own advice. If anything you see gives you nightmares because the brownies are not all perfect, I apologize and hope you can find a good, affordable therapist. Who specializes in baking anxiety.
Here we go!
While things are cooling, make the frosting if you choose to make frosting.
Butter, powdered sugar, vanilla again, and white chocolate and, once again, my dining room table. Note. I used an entire 4 oz. Ghirardelli white chocolate bar, NOT white chocolate chips. I think they melt a little more evenly and quickly than chips, but honestly, as long as it’s white chocolate and the right amount, I’m not going to arrest you for using chips.
Beat the butter and vanilla together. Add the powdered sugar a 1/2 cup at a time. Start by mixing on medium low speed. Once it is mildly incorporated and your house is safe from a powdered sugar explosion, kick up the speed a couple of notches. Once all the powdered sugar from one addition is fully incorporated, repeat until you have used all the powdered sugar.
Now we need to get that fabulous white chocolate flavor up in the frosting. Melt the white chocolate bits that you have chosen. I did this in a microwave because I was feeling lazy, but you can totes do this in a double boiler over a stovetop. Point is, the goal is to melt the chocolate, not cook it. Never heat it to the point of boiling.
Oh yeah. Smooth and shiny! Now pour all of this into your frosting mixture and whip it. Whip it good. On medium high speed until the frosting is fluffy, light and forms peaks.
Like that! Peaks! Whoohoo!
Now, you keep waiting until the brownies are cool. When they are literally completely cool, you have to frost and cut them. I frosted before I cut. Big mistake. It didn’t really work out for me. I had a hard time spreading the frosting because it is super thick and creamy. It didn’t completely rip up the brownies, but because I’m sure now that the brownies weren’t cool, it did do a smidge of damage and I didn’t get the desired effect of evenly distributed frosting.
Having frosted first and cut second and not liking the results too much, I might opt to cut first and then frost from now on. The choice is yours, but if I could persuade you with a bumper sticker, it might read: #cutfirstfrostsecond2016!
That being said
Woah dang. These are so good…If you don’t like frosting, you don’t have to add it. I personally think it adds a nice layer of decadence, but believe me. These brownies could stand on their own two feet if they indeed had feet to stand on.
Try them out. Take them to a party this fall. Make them for Halloween and call them Blood Brownies! It’s all good!
Nosh on, friends.
Red Velvet Brownies
Yield: 16 brownies Prep: 10 -15 minutes Bake: 35-45 minutes
3 Tbsp cocoa powder (sifted)
2 Tbsp red food coloring
2 Tbsp vanilla (divided into 1 Tbsp each)
1/2 cup unsalted butter
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1 1/4 cups unbleached flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter
2 1/2 cups powdered sugar (sifted)
1 tsp vanilla
4 oz. white chocolate (melted)
- Preheat oven to 350°. Prepare an 8×8 baking dish by lightly greasing and dusting with flour. Or whatever floats your boat.
- Stir together cocoa powder, food coloring and 1 Tbsp vanilla in a small bowl until no lumps remain. Set aside.
- Mix together flour and salt in a small bowl and set aside. I know. We are going to have many bowls set aside. Don’t worry.
- In a standing mixer or using a hand mixer, beat butter until fluffy. Add sugar and cream the two together until thoroughly combined. Mix in eggs, then add remaining 1 Tbsp vanilla and beat to combine.
- Add cocoa mixture to butter mixture and beat on medium speed until entire mixture is one uniform color. Should be a very pretty shade of red.
- Slowly add in flour and salt and mix on medium speed until all flour is completely incorporated. Be sure to scrape the sides of the bowl to insure all flour is mixed in.
- Pour into prepared pan. Bake for 35-45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the baking dish comes out clean.
- Remove from oven and place entire baking dish on a cooling rack. Cool completely before frosting and/or cutting.
- While brownies cool, make the frosting!
- Beat butter until broken down a bit, then add the vanilla and beat to combine.
- Add powdered sugar 1/2 cup at time. Start by mixing on medium low speed, then increase speed to medium-medium high. Once the first 1/2 cup is fully incorporated, repeat this process until you have used all the powdered sugar.
- Melt the white chocolate and pour all of it into the frosting. Beat on medium high until all the white chocolate is completely mixed in and the frosting is light and fluffy.
- Once the brownies are completely cool, cut and frost and eat your way to blissful cavities!