Monday, February 4, 2008


Guy's Budweiser sign and Cleveland Browns tear-apart doll are upper right, but he attempted to put them over the fireplace. The cherub was in the ivy.
Here's the cherub's mate, trying to catch her kiss. Now she's gone. I'm sure he's sad.
Above, the cherub sat in the ivy with her legs dangling over the edge.
At least the dessert was good. No accidents there, just some drippy drizzle that globbed.
Vacation is over. Since our return in the early morning hours last Wednesday, the week has been consumed with jet lag, then getting ready for our Super Bowl Party. While I was in the kitchen today baking cookies, I heard a crash. "What broke?" I yelled into the living room. "The angel," Guy replied. Guy was trying to put his Budweiser sign on our mantel and knocked over the little cherub that was blowing a kiss to her mate on our antique tier table. It fell on the marble hearth and smashed to smithereens. I guess you could call this fall-out from the Super Bowl. Guy has promised to find me another cherub. In spite of this pre-game incident, our party was a success; and, since we are all Giant fans, suffice it to say we were happy at the end. A Super Bowl upset is always exciting, especially when it's your team doing the upsetting.

I have some party recipes to share with you from the last few days of cooking and baking: lemonny coleslaw, deviled ranch eggs, Krispy Toffee Milk Chocolate Chip Cookies, apricot almond shortbread bars, and tonight's super easy and super good recipe, Peanut Butter Mousse Brownies.

The base of these brownies is from a Taste of Home Contest Winning Recipe (Chocolate Peanut Butter Brownies from Country Woman). The filling and topping are mine.

Peanut Butter Mousse Brownies

INGREDIENTS: BROWNIE BASE: 2 squares (1 oz. each) unsweetened chocolate
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter (I guess you could substitute 1/2 cup applesauce and
maybe just add a couple Tbsp. of butter)
2 large eggs
1 cup sugar (I used 1/2 cup sugar + 1 Tbsp. Stevia)
1/2 cup all-purpose flour (I used 1/4 cup AP +1/4 cup whole wheat)
3/4 tsp. pure vanilla extract (I added this, the recipe did not call for it)
1/8 tsp. salt (If you use salted butter, you can omit this)

FILLING: 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
5 Tbsp. confectioner's (10X) sugar
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1 cup fat-free half and half
1/2 pkg. instant vanilla or French vanilla pudding (about 5-1/2 Tbsp.)
1/2 cup heavy cream, whipped (or 1/2 cup fat-free frozen whipped topping, thawed)
TOPPING: 1/4 cup Hershey's Special Dark Chocolate Chips or other semisweet chips
1 Tbsp. butter
2 Tbsp. chopped salted peanuts
DIRECTIONS: Preheat oven to 350F. In a small saucepan, melt the chocolate and butter over low heat; set aside to cool slightly. In a medium mixing bowl, using a wire whip, beat the eggs and sugar until light and pale colored. Add flour, salt and chocolate; whip till glossy and well mixed. Pour into a greased 9-inch square baking pan. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until the brownies test done. Cool completely on wire rack.
To make filling: In medium mixing bowl, combine peanut butter, sugar and vanilla and beat on low speed using electric mixer, till mixture is smooth. Add half and half and beat till smooth. Add pudding mix and beat for at least 1 minute, or till well combined. Fold in whipped cream. Spread over brownie base.
To make topping: Melt chips and butter over low heat in small heavy pot, stirring till smooth and liquiddy. Drizzle in thin rows over brownie in a criss-cross pattern. Sprinkle chopped peanuts over top. Refrigerate 1 hour or overnight to firm topping before cutting into 2.25" squares. (Tip: Use a sharp knife to cut the brownies. The chocolate drizzle hardens and when you cut into it, the lines of chocolate tend to separate down into the topping, so use a light hand and go slow.) Yield: 16 squares. Warning: These are dangerously addictive.

No comments: