Friday, February 15, 2013

Valentine's Brownies

For our late Valentine's, I decided to make something that combines 2 of Si Khadir's favorite things: caramel and chocolate. Because I am a slave to the holiday, I also decided it needed to be heart-shaped. I went back and forth deciding how to make it heart-shaped... should I cut it out from a larger pan, should I try to find a mold, should I just take bites out of a cupcake until it looks like a heart... I settled on silicon heart baking cups.

I just used a chocolate chunk brownie mix, so that wasn't particularly interesting. It took about 35 minutes to bake them in the cups.

Then I melted a bag of caramels in a pot with 1/3 to 1/2 a cup of evaporated milk (however much is in one of the tiny cans). I put it in a plastic squeeze bottle and then squished it into several places in each brownie-cupcake.

I made WAAAY too much caramel sauce so I am definitely going to need some more ideas for uses, I am thinking ice cream. The caramel didn't really create a central chamber in the brownies as I had hoped, I think because the brownies are so thick, so I just created little caramel columns.

Then I made icing out of about a tablespoon of butter, a tablespoon or 2 of water, 1/2 cup of white chocolate chips, and about 1/2 cup of powdered sugar. Just melt everything together and then add the powdered sugar and stir like crazy. You can change ratios to make it thicker or thinner.

I had some trouble taking the brownies out of the cups, they don't stretch quite as nicely as the paper cups. The smaller brownies came out ok, but I left the bigger ones in the cups because they were just falling apart. I poured the icing over the brownies and let it set a bit before piping little red hearts on them... how cute! (hooooorrrrkkkk)

Then I made a terribly sappy little display for when Si comes home tonight:

Yes, everyone, try not to barf and laugh at the same time. I haven't actually tasted anything yet, so I suppose there will be a follow up!

The brownies were pretty darn good, but the outsides got a bit crustier than expected, I assume because they were baked individually so they all had the crusty edge. I think cake would have been better with this combo, but it's brownies, caramel and icing so it can't be that bad. This is definitely my favorite kind of icing though... keep your butter cream to yourself, I like icing that sets up hard.

Also, that damn red ribbon above left glitter all over my house. I hate you ribbon.

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