Witness now with your weak human eyes: The immaculate brownies which birthed BakeSpite.net!
Well, sort of. I made some friggin’ delicious brownies the day before New Year’s Eve and, in my enthusiasm, mentioned them on Twitter. I was then inundated with people talking about how awesome they sounded, and even suggestions to launch a food blog. That was such a good idea that I did! Or rather, we did. This site would not be kickin’ without Cat. Nor would I have this gorgeous photo of this succulent brownie.
Seriously, this is why we exercise. So we can indulge in things like this. “Heaven brownies” was the appellation suggested on Twitter, and I can’t think of a better name. We made these at the same time that we made our New Year’s Eve Beef Bourguignon, and that is why my next weigh-in pummeled me with a dizzying setback. But it was worth it. I mean, look at those.
I can’t claim the credit for the basic recipe here. There’s a story behind these brownies. But isn’t that always the case for the best food?
Cat spent most of the summer traveling for work, and luckily a good portion of that time was spent in Michigan, allowing her to use my parents’ home as a base camp for a few weeks. It’s lonely work out there, and eating nothing but restaurant food gets pretty tiring in a hurry, so I was glad she was able to enjoy the occasional home-cooked meal. She’s had nothing but good to say about my mother’s baking, but aside from those nigh-impossible-to-replicate rolls, the one thing that’s most stuck with her are the muffins Mom made one night before Cat headed out for an extended drive.
So, I inquired about the muffins so that I could master the recipe myself. Turns out Mom just used a box of Ghirardelli double chocolate muffins and added some extra chocolate chips and fresh cherries. Easy enough; I headed over to the grocery store and grabbed the ingredients.
But! Once I got home, I realized I had grabbed a box of double chocolate brownie mix by mistake. I was mortified, but Cat reassured me with an important secret: She actually likes brownies a lot more than muffins. What luck, eh?
So, I went ahead and made the brownies, just like it said on the box. I mixed in a cup of frozen cherries, thawed, and half a cup of Guittard milk chocolate chips. Using milk chocolate chips was a great idea, since they added a pleasant mildness to complement the obscene richness of all the dark chocolate in the box mix. (I’m pretty much 100% in love with Guittard’s chips, by the way. They’re much, much better in baked goods than the standard Nestlé chocolate, or even Ghirardelli chips.)
For this photo, Cat wanted to make the brownies look extra beautiful, so we sprinkled them with extra cherries and milk chocolate chips. Then we realized that was kind of a brilliant idea for actually serving them, so that is how we ate the brownies themselves. The verdict: Delicious.
If you don’t want to go with the box mix on these, the recipe is available at Ghirardelli’s website. Just be sure to include the milk chocolate chips. And the cherries. Oh, the cherries.