Gasparilla Cookbook

Brownies 


Good morning! I hope you are having a great week so far. If you live in the Tampa area then you know that Gasparilla is right around the corner and these brownies happen to be from the Gasparilla cookbook!

It is a super easy recipe and they are quite delicious. Perfect for your pirate festivities or a casual ladies night in! Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 4 1 ounce chocolate squares unsweetened
  • 1 stick margarine
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 4 well beaten eggs
  • 1 cup sifted all purpose flour
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Melt the chocolate and margarine over hot water and blend. Gradually add sugar then eggs and beat well. Add flour gradually, mixing just until it disappears. Add nuts and vanilla. Pour into two 8 x 8 2 inch pans which have been greased and paper lined. Cook 25 to 30 minutes at 350. Cut each pan into 16 squares. Let stand for 5 minutes before turning out to cool. Makes 32.

 

Savor the Seasons · Uncategorized

Brownie Mint Squares


Tis the Season! These brownie mint squares are the perfect dessert to bring to any holiday party or cookie exchange.  The prep is a bit more than your average brownie mix but the result are SO WORTH IT. People will be talking about these treats for many Christmas’ to come! The mint layer on top is what really sets these above the rest. Of course following the cookbook recipe for this layer is the way to go, however for those events that you just don’t seem to have the time I do have a little shortcut in mind ☺

What you’ll need:

For the brownies:

1 cup (2 sticks) of butter

4 ounces unsweetened chocolate (I recommend Bakers brand chocolate bars)

4 eggs

2 cups granulated sugar

1 cup all purpose flour

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

½ teaspoon salt

For the mint layer:

½ cup (1 stick) butter softened

4 cups confectioners’ sugar

1.4 cup crème de menthe

¼ cup (1/2 stick butter)- Yes that’s 3. 5 sticks of butter total!

1 cup (6 ounces) chocolate chips

3 tablespoons water

For the brownies; heat 1 cup butter and the unsweetened chocolate in a saucepan over medium-low heat until the butter and chocolate are melted, stirring frequently.

Let stand until cool. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Mix the chocolate mixture with the eggs, granulated sugar, flour, vanilla, and salt in a bowl. Pour into a 9 x 13 inch pan and bake for 30 minutes.

For the mint layer:

Mix ½ cup butter, the confectioners’ sugar, crème de menth and half-and-half in a bowl. Spread over the brownie layer. Refrigerate until completely chilled. Heat ¼ cup butter, the chocolate chips, and water in a small saucepan over medium-low heat until the butter and chocolate are melted, stirring frequently. Pour over the mint layer. Refrigerate until chilled. Cut into small squares to served! (I sprinkled peppermint flakes on top to add a little extra holiday cheer☺ )

Shortcut:

If you’re short of time it doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy these tasty treats, skip the instructions for the mint layer and use andes mint chips instead, just pour on warm brownies immediately after taking them out of the oven. Spread melted chocolate evenly on the brownies. Refrigerate until a hard layer forms then cut and serve!

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The Life of the Party

The Best Brownies


The Life of the Party, p.117

Looking for a delicious brownie recipe? Look no further because The Junior League of Tampa’s, The Life of the Party cookbook (p.117) has you covered. If you don’t own this cookbook, become friends with someone who does or go online and buy it! This recipe is quick, easy and doesn’t call for a lot of tricky ingredients. Other than the unsweetened chocolate, many of the ingredients are items you probably have on hand! The recipe also has options to modify the recipe. I enjoy the basic brownie recipe but if you want to have a caramel brownie or an espresso chocolate brownie, those are options too with this recipe.

Basic brownie batter:

31/2 ounces unsweetened chocolate (baker’s chocolate)

3/4 cup unsalted butter (1 1/2 sticks), softened

1 1/2 cups sugar

3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

3 eggs

3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons flour

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons chopped pecans, toasted (optional)

For basic brownie batter, melt the chocolate (break into small pieces or squares) in a double broiler; cool. I use a metal bowl that fits into one of my sauce pans because I couldn’t find my double broiler and it worked perfectly. Add the sugar and vanilla and beat with an electric mixer until well blended. Add the eggs 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the flour and salt and beat on low until well blended. Stir in 1/2 cup pecans (optional). I just like some on top of the brownies, so again, this is an optional step. Spread the batter into a greased 8×8 inch baking pan. Sprinkle the remaining 2 tablespoons pecans on the top. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in the center comes out with moist crumbs. Because of the consistency of the brownie you may initially think it needs a lot more baking time- be careful increasing the time too much because it may over bake them.

Cool 1 hour before cutting. For the best flavor, serve the next day. Makes about 20 small brownies despite the recipe which indicates 2-3 dozen small brownies. If you bake in a larger pan you may yield more but be sure to watch your baking time if you are adjusting the pan size.

For directions on the caramel brownie or the espresso chocolate chunk brownies check out the cookbook.

   
    
    
   

Dessert · Florida · Uncategorized

Bern’s Carrot Cake Brownies With Toasted Pecan Frosting


Anyone who’s visited or lives in Tampa knows that Bern’s Steakhouse is a tradition and an experience in the South Tampa area. The Junior League of Tampa is lucky enough to have one of the most famous recipes from Bern’s included in their Capture the Coast cookbook. The Bern’s Carrot Cake Brownies With Toasted Pecan Frosting is soon to be a tradition in your house once you try them and see how delicious they are! The nice balance of cinnamon and nutmeg combined with shredded carrots topped with a pecan cream cheese icing will leave you wanting “just one more” brownie. Don’t worry, we don’t judge!

This recipe takes a little bit in terms of prep time but I promise it’s worth it in the end. The brownie mixture is pretty straightforward and I do recommend using a stand up mixer, if you have one. When it was time for the carrots I used my small food processor to speed up the process and get the carrots shredded and chopped then added to the batter. I would also say if you are not one to have peach schnapps lying around you can buy the small “airplane” size mini bottle at the liquor store since you only need a small amount. To test the brownies I used a toothpick and looked to see that the edges were pulling from the side of the pan, as the recipe directs.

The frosting is pretty simple (hoorah!) with cream cheese, butter, confectioners’ sugar and pecans as the only ingredients. The nice thing about this frosting is that you can add a little more sugar or pecans if you want a sweeter or crunchier frosting.

Once the brownies cooled I frosted them in the pan, then cut them before placing them on the serving dish.

Bern’s Carrot Cake Brownies With Toasted Pecan Frosting 

Brownies

1 ½ cup all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon cinnamon

½ teaspoon nutmeg

Dash of salt

½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened

1 ¼ cups sugar

2 eggs

5 tablespoons buttermilk

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

¼ teaspoon peach schnapps

¼ cup pecans, toasted and finely chopped

3 carrots, peeled and shredded (about 1/3/4 cups)

Toasted Pecan Frosting

½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened

12 ounces cream cheese, softened

¾ cup confectioners’ sugar

¼ cup pecans, toasted

For the brownies, preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Sift the flour, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt together. Beat the sugar at low speed in the bowl of a stand up mixer fitted with the paddle attachment until smooth. Beat at medium speed until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, buttermilk, vanilla and schnapps a small amount at a time, beating well after each addition and stopping to scrape down the side of the bowl occasionally. Add the flour mixture and mix well. Scrape down the side of the bowl. Stir in the pecans and carrots. Spoon into a buttered 9×13-inch baking pan. Bake for 20 to 30 minutes or until the edges pull from the side of the pan. Remove from the oven to cool.

For the frosting, beat the butter in the bowl of a stand up mixer fitted with the paddle attachment until soft and creamy. Add the cream cheese and beat until smooth. Beat in the confectioners’ sugar. Fold in the pecans with a spatula. Spread over the cool brownies.

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Getting ready to sift the flour, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt
Getting ready to sift the flour, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt
adding the buttermilk, vanilla, schnapps and egg
adding the buttermilk, vanilla, schnapps and egg
Flour mixture before adding the carrots and nuts
Flour mixture before adding the carrots and nuts
Batter before baking
Batter before baking
Time for frosting! Cream cheese, butter and confectioner's sugar
Time for frosting! Cream cheese, butter and confectioner’s sugar
Fold in the pecans to complete this easy frosting recipe. You can always choose to leave the pecans out if preferred.
Fold in the pecans to complete this easy frosting recipe. You can always choose to leave the pecans out if preferred.
Our brownie fresh out of the oven.
Our brownie fresh out of the oven.
After the brownies cooled they were frosted and cut into squares.
After the brownies cooled they were frosted and cut into squares.
Ready to serve!
Ready to serve!