September 2009 archive

Cakery Friday: Peanut Butter Chocolate Brownies


While I always love a baking challenge, I am even more impressed when I come across a recipe that is truly decadent and simple! These “one bowl wonders” are a perfect dessert when you’re short on time, but want to make something impressive. They’re a chocolate and peanut butter lovers heaven!

How beautiful is my new dessert plate!!!!! Courtesy of the oh-so-talented Robert Siegel Ceramics and artwork by Stephanie Kao!


As always, gather all of the ingredients together.


In a microwave-safe bowl place 3/4 cup granulated sugar, 1/4 cup unsalted butter and 1 tablespoon of water.


Place in microwave for 1 minute, until the butter is melted.


Add 3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips and mix until they are completely melted.


Stir in 1 large egg and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract.


Then stir in 1 cup all-purpose flour, 1/4 teaspoon baking soda and a pinch of salt. Mix until just incorporated.


Finally, mix in 1/2 cup peanut butter chips and 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips.


Place a scoop full of batter into a mini muffin pan that has been sprayed with PAM.


Bake for 11-12 minutes at 350 degree F until the tops are set and a toothpick comes out just slightly wet.


As the brownies begin to cool, they will fall in the center. If not, tap the centers with the back of a teaspoon to make a hole.


Place 3/4 cup of peanut butter in microwave for 45 seconds to melt. Place a spoonful of peanut butter to fill the hole in the brownie center. Garnish all of the brownies with both 1/3 cup of peanut butter chips and semi-sweet chocolate chips.


To view the whole formula for peanut butter chocolate brownies, click below.
PeanutButterBrownies.htm

Happy Baking!

xoxo,

Ali

GroOrganic

Today’s post is a little out of the usual, but something wonderful nonetheless. For those of you who know me personally, I care deeply about eating right. I’m definitely a foodie, but I’m also committed to consuming fresh and healthy products. Since I read Barbara Kingsolver’s Animal Vegetable Miracle a few years ago (you must read it!!!), I’ve tried my best to make a commitment to eat “local” food. The book made me realize how far and wide my food has to travel to make it into my grocery store. Not only does that cause the environment to suffer, but it also means that I’m not necessarily eating the freshest produce available. According to Kingsolver, the best way to ensure that food is safe, organic and fresh is to grow it yourself.


Sounds easy right? Of course not! I haven’t exactly been graced with a green thumb, nor do I have endless time and effort to suddenly become a farmer. (How would I ever find the time to blog?) Luckily, while watching the Tori and Dean’s show on the Style network a few months ago, I came across a brilliant solution: GroOrganic.

GroOrganic installs and maintains a fruit and vegetable garden right in the comfort of your own backyard. The company’s mission is to educate you on exactly what is in the food you are eating, by having you grow the food, organically on your own.


How does it work? GroOrganic will consult with you and figure out your space needs and constraints. Even if you just have a small apartment balcony, GroOrganic can accommodate you. Then they will provide you with an “earth box,” a self-watering above ground planter. Next you choose fruits and vegetables you want to grow, from a list of what are most optimal to your climate and terrain. GroOrganic is a national company, not just in Florida. Then voila, your garden will grow and prosper. You can also hire GroOrganic to help you with maintenance, weeding and basic care of the box.


So why am I lecturing you? Because today, I had the lucky opportunity to meet with Karin from GroOrganic and select the veggies that are going into an earth box for my family! I’ll keep you posted on the arrival of the earth box, the progress of the plants and the ending culinary results.


GroOrganic makes sense for so many reasons: the safety of the environment, to save money at the store, and most importantly, to know that you’re eating healthy, fresh, chemical free foods.

I just cannot wait for our earth box to arrive! Stay healthy.

xoxo,

Niki

Autumn is Awesome!

Or so they say…. I’m pretty hopeful that autumn will be making an appearance in South Florida in the next few months. In the meantime, in honor of the first technical day of Fall, here are a few of my favorite Fall invitations, all available at Papery & Cakery right now!



















{From top to bottom: Pica Press. Mika78. Mr. Boddington’s Studio. ModernPress. Julie Holcomb. Cheree Berry. Louella Press. Wiley Valentine. Twig & Fig. Studio Olivine. Smock. Oblation. Neah Bay Douglas. Elum. Luscious Verde. Egg Press. Dauphine. Delphine.}

Enjoy the fabulous foliage!

xoxo,

Niki



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