Monday, May 25, 2009

Happy Birthday!

We like our cake around here. "Cake me!" is one of my daughter's favorite phrases (I'm supposing she's heard her dad joke one too many times, "Beer me!"). When we celebrated my husband's and my nephew's birthday on Saturday, my sister made the most decadent ice cream cake:Think Oreo cookie crust, a thick layer of chocolate fudge ganache, crushed peanut butter cups and crushed Oreos, two kinds of ice cream, more ganache, and topped with peanut butter cups and whipped cream. Oh my! So much better than any specialty store ice cream cake I've had. I will see about getting the recipe for it.

In the meantime, I've added my recipe for brownies, below. My husband's actual birthday is today. He wanted brownies and ice cream. So, being the dutiful wife that I am, I made brownies for him (it doesn't hurt that I love brownies myself).

I'm by no means a brownie connoisseur, but I do know what a good brownie tastes like. The more dense, moist, and fudgy the brownie, the better. I'm not a fan of light, somewhat dry, cake-like brownies. When I googled brownie recipes, it was amazing how heated the battles are regarding which is better: cake-like or fudge-like. It is purely a matter of personal preference. But, since I like fudgy, this recipe falls in that category. I looked over half a dozen recipes, and sort of combined a couple of them together. They are beyond sweet and far beyond rich! My advice? Cut them into small squares. Small! You can always go back for seconds! :)

Fudge Brownies with Mocha Icing

For the brownies:

1/2 cup sugar

2 Tbsp water

2 Tbsp butter

1.5 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips

2 eggs

1/2 tsp vanilla

2/3 cup all-purpose flour

1/4 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp salt

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Grease 8x8 pan.

In saucepan, combine sugar, water, and butter and bring to boil. Remove from heat and stir in chocolate chips til melted. Mix in eggs, vanilla. Combine flour, baking soda, and salt in separate bowl. Stir flour mixture into chocolate mixture. Don't overmix. Spread evenly into pan. Bake 20-25 minutes. Do not overbake! Remove from the oven once the center is set and the edges are just pulling away from the sides of the pan. Cool completely.

Mocha Icing:

1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

1/3 cup strongly brewed hot coffee

3 cups confectioner's sugar

1/3 cup melted butter

1/8 tsp salt

1 tsp vanilla

Combine all ingredients except the confectioner's sugar in a blender. Blend well, adding the sugar 1 cup at a time. Scrape sides as needed. Blend until thoroughly mixed. Icing will be thin, but don't worry. It will thicken as it stands. Spread over brownies in pan. Refrigerate until icing is thick and set. Cut into squares. Serve alone or warmed up (almost to the point of being a melted pool of chocolate) and topped with vanilla ice cream!


  1. Happy Birthday to Mark! If you have any leftover brownies you know where we live, pop on over anytime!

  2. Well, I had a bit of a stressful day today: 16 hours straight with no break and no help (Mark had meetings after work and got home at bedtime). Let's just say, the brownies didn't stand a chance! Is it awful that I left the birthday boy only one lone brownie?? :)