Probably my favorite brownie recipe of all times is the blond brownies I’m featuring this week. At the close of the recipe you’ll find the history behind this palate-pleasing dessert/snack. My dad, Jerry, always says he is tired of brownies; because everyone brings them to carry-in dinners. As I may have stated before: ‘Dad, that’s because everyone works, they’re quick and easy.’ I, however, am still a big fan of brownies of any sort. Perhaps the biggest problem with brownies is the fact that they are often overbaked.
In any baked good there are several things to watch, in order to produce moist cookies, cakes, breads and baked goods in general.
1. Like a good steak, the baked foods will finish cooking after they’re removed from the heat source.
2. Unless the dough is extremely stiff I usually stir baked products by hand.
This keeps me from over beating and bringing excessive oxygen/air into the
recipe. Which of course, makes the baked good dry.
3. Most breads are done at about 190 degrees. It’s OK to use a thermometer.
Some breads do vary, so study up before baking.
4. Bake on parchment paper to keep a tender bottom on cookies.
5. Line brownie pans with foil, spray with vegetable spray and then fill with
batter. When they’re cooked and cooled, lift them out with the foil and proceed to cut the brownies. If cut properly, they’ll look like they came from a bakery.
Keep in mind that anything you take to a pot-luck function should be your best representation. If the product doesn’t turn out good, don’t stress out! Run by the grocery store and get something yummy. Most adults can’t pass up a good donut!
There are a great deal of folks out there who like to use new recipes for social events. Not me, I’m too afraid it won’t come out well and then my reputation is on the line. Ponder, ponder…just sayin’.
It’s nice to see Table Rock Lake filling back up. Its spoonbill season currently and I can actually say a lot of folks have been on the lake fishing. We even took Rumor, our corgi, out for a big run at Miller campground this weekend. The sun was shining and it was the most perfect day! My husband also took me out to lunch, which was a nice addition. The only downside was the fact that Rumor found it necessary to roll on the ground, in some not so pleasant materials! (Dog lovers know exactly what I mean!) Therefore the trip home was a bit smelly and a dog bath was had by all. It was still a wonderful day!
With my return to work and a schedule, of sorts, I’m better about food prep for family dinners. This week I’ve actually got a good idea what I’m serving for meals most evenings. It makes the week run smoother, that’s for sure.
We’ve also been in the clean clean mode which feels terrific. Seriously send me a few days of sunshine and I become the energizer bunny! Until I went to Florida a couple of weeks ago I didn’t realize just how rough our winters are. Without the sun all kinds of mental and physical changes begin to occur.
As I noted last week Silver Dollar City opens for the season, Wednesday, March 14th. With the grand opening of ‘Time Traveler’ coaster, it’s going to be a busy season. This will be the world’s tallest, fastest spinning roller coaster. Come see me at the culinary school. I’ll be there at 11 & 2 most days teaching classes. And I’m very close to the new ride!
Simply yours, The Covered Dish. www.thecovereddish.com
This recipe originated with Maxine VanMeter, Lewistown, Missouri
2/3 cup butter, soft, do not melt
2 cups brown sugar
2 eggs, lightly beaten
2 teaspoons, vanilla
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
6-8 ounces chocolate chips
1 cup nuts, English Walnuts or Pecans, optional
Soften butter and mix with brown sugar, cool slightly; add the eggs and vanilla. Mix all the dry ingredients together with a whisk. Gradually add to the butter mixture. Lastly add nuts if desired. Spread into a 9 x 13 Pyrex dish and sprinkle with chocolate chips, baking at 350 degrees for approximately 25 minutes. For a better presentation line the baking pan with foil, spray the foil with vegetable spray, spread the dough, add chips and then bake. When the brownies cool remove from the pan. It will be easy to cut perfect bars using this method.
Some cooks even use parchment paper instead of foil. Test with a toothpick for doneness. Makes at least 24 squares.
Our community and church friend, Maxine VanMeter, always brought these brownies to church functions when I was a girl in Lewistown, Missouri. Blonde brownies are a product of the 1960’s. Maxine was always the first on the scene when there was a sickness or death in our community, she had a true gift. I went through a period of several years where I couldn’t make this recipe. No joking, I didn’t make them for like 15 years. Then I started making them again and everything was just dandy. Go figure…….
Note: In August 2015 I was discussing this recipe with Carol & Connie O’Dear who told me the recipe was originally their mother’s recipe. Well the two families were cousins, and they were both like extended family to me!
Debbie Dance Uhrig