Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Andes Mint Brownies and 24 hours in North Carolina

This past weekend was nice and relaxing.  After enjoying some delicious strawberry infused vodka cocktails, Stephanie and I headed to our favorite hole in the wall Indian restaurant with James and Melissa...where we proceeded to stuff ourselves with delicious food.  (Quick interjection...have you ever been told your group was too loud in restaurant...as an adult?  Apparently we were a little to chatty and needed to be stuffing our faces more)

Saturday morning, I jumped in the car heading south to my favorite state, to see one of my oldest friends...seriously since daycare people.  Rachel and I grabbed some lunch, did a bit of window shopping and then went home to bake some cakey brownies.  It was a great debate when we were deciding what to make, but what came into play were some Andes mint pieces.  

Andes mints + cakey chocolate brownie = yum

Plus, it was so much fun to be in the kitchen with Rachel.  To catch up on real life...adult life stuff...to reminisce about being 5 and playing in the sand...and to hear all about her wedding plans.  Rachel is basically just one of those people that you can't help but love...which means she's awesome.  

So, these brownie we dreamed up together are light for brownies, but denser than cake.  The Andes mints give it an awesome minty flavor and you can even taste a hint of the coffee.  So, if you were like me when your were a kid and could have eaten about 10 Andes mints or more in one sitting, then these brownies will be right up your alley.

Strawberry infused vodka!  Great with sparkling lemonade...

Headed back to DC...Hello Richmond skyline

Thanks Molly for sharing...I am totes having fun in Pic Stitch now.

Cocoa powder and butter melting together over a double-boiler.

I love it when someone else does the work...Rachel whisking away.

And all ready for the pan...then into the oven.

Andes Mint Brownies:
1 2/3 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup cocoa powder
3/4 cup butter
3/4 strong coffee 
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Spray a 8 x 10 baking pan or a 9 x 13 (your brownies won't be as thick) with non-stick cooking spray.  Set aside.

2. Combine butter and cocoa powder in a small bowl, and place over a pot of simmering water.  Make sure that the simmering water down not touch the bottom of the bowl.  Once butter has melted, stir in the coffee and remove from heat.

3.  In a large sized bowl, whisk together the eggs and the sugar until well combined.  Whisk in the vanilla extract.  When the butter and chocolate have melted and come together, slowly stir the chocolate mixture into the sugar mixture.

4.  In a medium sized mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt.  In batches, whisk the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients, just until combined.  Then fold in the Andes mint pieces.

5.  Pour the batter in the pan and bake for 30-35 minutes if using a glass 8 x 10" pan or 20-25 minutes in a metal 9 x 13" pan or until test comes out clean and brownies are set in the middle.  Remove from the oven and let cool until ready to be served.  Enjoy!

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