Tuesday, May 3, 2011


Hey.  Let's forget about work for a few minutes.  Go ahead and minimize that mind-numbing spreadsheet.  Put your phone on "Do Not Disturb" mode.  The weekend is only four days away and I vote we do something fun.  Let's play a round of "If..."

Something sweet

If you could watch/listen to/consume only one of each for the rest of your life, what would you pick? 

Album:  Hmm.  Three-way toss up between Amy Winehouse - Frank, the Sweeney Todd soundtrack and N.E.R.D. - In Search of...

Movie:  Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory

Food:  Pizza.  I know.  So predictable.  A suitable answer for a kindygartner.  But this is a craving that never goes away.  Pizza in the morning, pizza in the evening, pizza at suppertime!  The jingle engineers over at the Bagel Bites HQ had the right idea, even though I never questioned the fact that suppertime and the evening are pretty much one and the same.

Drink:  iced tea, unsweetened or Yards Pale Ale

Something sweet:  a fudge brownie

Now, my choices aren't necessarily my all-time favorites.  The key here (since we are talking eternity and all) is replay value.  For example, Fleetwood Mac's Rumours = one of the best albums of all time.  But would I want to listen to it everyday?  With the exception of The Chain, probably not.  My favorite dessert is a butterscotch bread pudding they serve Berry White's restaurant.  Freaking insane.  But would I be able to eat it everyday?  No.  It's a dessert I prefer to save for special occasions or every other week, whatever comes first.

Now a brownie, on the other hand, is an entirely different story altogether.  To bite off the words of Juno MacGuff:  as far as sweets go, brownies are totally boss.  They are the cheese to my macaroni.  And I could, without a doubt, eat one every day until the end of days.

I used a boxed mix for the Sex Panther brownies a few weeks back but it wasn't until a hankering hit the other day that I realized I didn't have a go-to recipe for "from scratch" brownies.

King Arthur came to my rescue.

 Seriously Ridiculous Fudge Brownies
Recipe from King Arthur Flour

Makes 2 dozen brownies

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
2 1/4 cups granulated sugar
4 large eggs
1 1/4 cups Dutch-process cocoa
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon espresso powder (I omitted this)
1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups chocolate chips (omitted these, as well)

Preheat your oven to 350°F.  Lightly grease a 9" x 13" pan.

In a medium saucepan set over low heat, melt the butter.  Stir in sugar.  Heat until the mixture is hot (but not bubbling) to help dissolve more of the sugar.

In a separate medium bowl, combine the cocoa, salt, baking power, espresso powder (if using) and vanilla.  Beat in the eggs.

Add the butter mixture to the bowl and stir until smooth.  

Finally, add the flour (and chips, if using them) and stir once more until smooth.  The battle will be thick like delicious, chocolate-y mud.
Pour the batter into your prepared pan.  Bake for 25-30 minutes or until it passes the toothpick test.

Cool completely before hacking in.

Yep.  Great replay value.


  1. Oooo, nice.

    Ok. Here's my list of If.

    Album-Incubus S.C.I.E.N.C.E. (which I have managed to lose the CD again)
    Movie-Better Off Dead (Lane Meyer)
    Drink-Diet Canada Dry
    Something Sweet-A frozen Gansito, a Mexican treat that is like a twinkie but made up of vanilla cake with a strawberry jelly top then covered in chocolate.

  2. pizza is the perfect if food. I love cold pizza for breakfast.

    Album - Michael Jackson greatest hits
    Movie - Weekend at bernies
    Food - pizza
    Drink - water
    Something sweet - my mom's apple crisp

  3. I forgot food and put me in the pizza category. It's so yummy and, personally, fulfills a lot of the dietary recommendations. ;)

  4. Girl, have you ever tried Ina's insanely good brownies? Makes and entire baking sheet full but I promise you they will be devoured. Amazingly, I don't think these have made it to my blog yet. Must correct this.

  5. Album - Northern Exposure
    Movie - 28 days later, yes I am a weird girl
    Drink - Sauvignon blanc
    Something Sweet - Strawberry Cake

    Love your brownies.

  6. Margie - I want my two dollars!

    Jen - Weekend at Bernies has definite replay value. Manos de piedros. Fists of Steel.

    Wendi - My favorite orange spatula came with a box of Ina's brownie mix but I've not tried making them from scratch. Thanks for the reminder! Given her track record, they may very well knock King Arthur off of his brownie throne.

    Jennifurla - Zombies! I like that Cillian Murphy guy.

  7. Album - Matt Nathanson's Some Mad Hope or Tori Amos' Little Earthquakes
    Movie - the Boy who could fly or the last of the mohicans or the lord of the Rings trilogy
    Food - always always Pho. tho really, anything vietnamese
    Drink - water
    Something sweet - chocolate. like a chocolate wonderful or something.

  8. I agree with pizza. It's not my favorite food, but I can almost always be up for eating it. And it does have many of the food groups in it, like pepperoni and cheese. (Those are food groups.)

  9. Album - Weezer's Blue Album
    Movie - Full Metal Jacket
    Food - Homemade Macaroni and Cheese
    Drink - Red Wine
    Something sweet - Chocolate pudding

  10. Angry Asian - Whatever happened to Jay Underwood? I immediately associate him with the 80's.

    Shannon - If anyone ever says the magic words, "Who wants to go in on a pizza?", within seconds I'm making it rain dollar bills on the designated pizza money stack.

    Allison - Pudding. Yes. So much nostalgia in one tiny cup.

  11. Those brownies look luscious. Love your IF choices. I'll play too...

    Album: Songs in the Key of Life - Stevie Wonder
    Movie: King of Hearts
    Food: Mac-n-Cheese
    Drink: Barolo
    Sweet: Caramel

  12. Brownie's have been my ultimate pregnancy craving and I could not agree more with their "replay value". I have eaten a ton of them in the past 9 months and I am STILL not even close to sick of them. In fact I just pleaded to Liam to make this recipe for me because I NEED them.

    also. zebra cakes = major replay value/huge pregnancy craving.

    so yea - if...hmm...

    Album: Perhaps something by jose gonzales
    Movie: Marie Antionette (w/ kirsten dunst)
    Food: Stuffing
    Drink: water (pregnant) / sangria (not pregnant)
    Sweet: Brownies or zebra cakes

  13. Blarg! Just one album? So difficult.
    Okay, okay... I'll go with U2 Best of 1980 - 1990. Is greatest hits cheating?
    Movie - Shawshank Redemption
    Food - cheese & crackers
    Drink - Tanqueray & tonic - I assume I can sneak some water if I'm really thirsty?
    Sweet - chocolate chip cookies, all day, all night

    That brownie recipe sounds A LOT like Alton Brown's recipe, which is my favorite. And I add chocolate chips to his, so there you go! Oh, and brava on omitting the espresso powder. Everyone says it makes things taste more chocolatey but they are wrong. It just makes it taste vaguely like coffee.

  14. Lora - Great album. And really, how can anyone not feel happy when listening to Sir Duke?

    Amanda - OMGSTUFFING. I put away loads of it at Thanksgiving yet never think to make it any other time of the year. Do you guys it year 'round? Oh and I've never had a Zebra Cake. Swiss Cake Rolls, Oatmeal Cream Pies, Star Crunches...but never a Zebra Cake. I must try one now, of course.

    Jennifer - Exactly! I'm all for deepening chocolate notes or whatever they say it does in certain recipes but I did not want to mess with these brownies. 'spresso-free, baby. All the way.

  15. album..heart..my 6yr is addicted to them..love it!
    movie...across the universe
    drink...margaritas..on the rock, all flavors, fresh juice, no mixes..
    sweet...pecan sandies, homemade..by the batches!!

    ohg, i love brownies and kingarthur never steers you wrong!

  16. I'll have to agree on pizza. You really can't go wrong there. And the same goes for the pale ale! Although I might choose a Blind Faith IPA instead. Oh, and these brownies! Yes, please. They look amazing!!!!

  17. Now I'm craving pizza! And one of these brownies!

  18. My favorite KAF brownie recipe used to be the one in our Bakers' Companion until I found this one on our site! I just love it. Unlike you, I am sure to put in the espresso powder and the chocolate chunks (be sure to wait for the batter to cool down before adding if you want the pieces to remain whole!). My secret ingredient is pure mint oil. Just a few drops is all I need. Love the, 3 baking sheets to the wind...! Thank you for trying our recipe. Elisabeth

  19. Sweetlife - Definitely with you on margaritas. On the rock, fresh juice, no mixes (what about salt? Yay or nay?)

    Kim - You like IPAs? We are going to get along juuuust fine.

    Deborah - I have a feeling a few of us will be eating pizza at some point by the end of the week. Possibly brownies, too.

    Elisabeth - Thanks for stopping by! I do have a weakness for mint chocolate anything. I'm glad you specified only using a few drops. I would have gotten a bit overzealous...

  20. Album: I could probably listen to Dead ringer by RJD2 forever.

    Movie: The Big Lebowski

    Food: 'Mama's dumplings'- Fresh, handmade dumplings, from this hole in the wall place in Rockville.

    Drink: Another one for Margaritas on the rocks, with salt please!

    Something sweet: Cheesecake

  21. I love talking about food.

    Album: Erasure Pop

    Movie: Wayne's World

    Food: Chicken Fingers

    Drink: Store brand fake crystal light fruit punch. It's all I drink now, so forever won't be that big a stretch.

    Something Sweet: can of icing

  22. A Million Little Fibers - Dead Ringer. Awesome choice. For the longest time, Mike had A Beautiful Mine as his ringtone and even after hundreds of calls, I would still dance to it every time it rang.

    Shannon - Finally, someone else who admits to enjoying some canned icing. Rebels, we are.

  23. Album

    Jeff Wayne's War of the Worlds - insanely underrated on this side of the Atlantic. Classic progressive rock concept album.


    Flushed Away - I love anything from Aardman, but this one is the best of the bunch so far.


    Topinky se syrem - a Czech speciality. Take grated edam cheese, mix with a beaten egg, salt and pepper. Spread mix on rye bread, fry cheese side up first, turn and fry until egg is cooked. Spread with mustard and indulge.


    Kout na Sumave 10 - another Czech thing. This is the best pale lager on the planet. End of.

    Something sweet

    Spotted Dick - a British steamed suet pudding with sultanas and served with custard. Divine.

  24. Ali, I made these brownies last night and HOLY COW this recipe is amazing! Thank you so much for sharing it! I have never had such a delicious brownie in all my life!

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  26. I always crave food, movies and some type of treat every weekend. Great combo right there.

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