Peanut Butter Brownies with Chocolate Drizzle

It feels like a lifetime ago, but we celebrated one of my favorite little guy's first birthday this past weekend. Happy Birthday, Wyatt! And I was lucky enough to be in charge of the smash cake! I panicked for about a minute because I realized I didn't know how to make a smash cake, and then turned to all my Instagram friends for advice. In the end, I made Molly's cardamom cupcakes recipe from her book Molly on the Range (I held the cardamom) and turned it into a mini smash cake. And then I made a batch of actual cardamom cupcakes for good measure because adults deserve cake too. If you're ever looking for a good smash cake recipe, try that one! It was a huge success and I'm wondering if a third batch of cake is in order...

Despite the excitement of the weekend, this week's been pretty quiet and chill. Which is I guess is great because we're pretty much out of town for a week and a half. First up is a friend hang weekend up in Oxnard, where all I wanna do is chill, read, watch Beauty and the Beast, and bbq. And after that, we're (Moses and I are) headed to Verona (Italy!) with my pals at Giovanni Rana. So really, this quiet week has actually been pretty necessary. I've been popping Wellness Formula like it's my job, preparing my body for all that travel. Which, btw, if you haven't heard of it, it's a game changer if you're like me and super susceptible to colds (not sponsored, just wanted to share). 

And speaking of wellness, I've been really digging Donal Skehan's new book, Fresh. It's all about healthy, fresh recipes that incorporate all the seasonal fruits and veggies to nourish and energize. The book's got recipes like yakitori salmon and tahini crunch noodle salad (yum) as well as, these peanut butter brownies. These brownies are the perfect better for you dessert, or in my case today, breakfast. I love how fudgy and peanut buttery they are--so much so that I had to send the rest to work with Moses, for fear I'd eat all of them. And they're even better the next day. If any of that sounded good to you, you def need Donal's book. Also, if for some crazy reason you don't know Donal from the Food Network or Cooking Channel or the BBC's Saturday Kitchen, he rocks and you're welcome (Maui aka Dwayne the Rock Johnson aka Lin Manuel Miranda's words, not mine). 😜  

PEANUT BUTTER BROWNIES WITH CHOCOLATE DRIZZLE

Reprinted with Permission from Donal Skehan's Fresh

Makes 16 - 24 squares

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 c. crunchy peanut butter*
  • 8 oz. dark chocolate (70% cacao mass), broken into squares
  • 1 c. light muscovado sugar (or light brown sugar)
  • 3 large free-range eggs, beaten
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 4 Tbsp. almond milk
  • Scant 1 c. all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder

FOR CHOCOLATE DRIZZLE

  • 4 oz. dark chocolate broken into squares
  • 1/8 c. roasted peanuts, chopped (optional)

TOOLS

  • 8 x 7-inch (or 8 x 8-inch) loaf pan lined with parchment paper
  • Measuring cups and spoons
  • Mixing bowls
  • Saucepan
  • Electric hand-held mixer
  • Whisk
  • Wire cooling rack
  • Sharp knife
  • Cutting board

FIX

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F and line an 8 x 7-inch** baking pan with parchment paper.
  2. Place the peanut butter and chocolate in a heatproof bowl set over a pan of barely simmering water, making sure the bottom of the pan doesn't touch the water. Stir constantly until melted and smooth. Remove from heat. 
  3. With a hand-held electric mixer, whisk the sugar and eggs together for 2-3 minutes, until pale and fluffy. Slowly add the melted chocolate and peanut butter, then add the vanilla extract and almond milk and continue to whisk until thickened. 
  4. Sift the flour and baking powder into a separate bowl and then gently fold into the egg mixture. using a spatula, pour the mixture into the prepared pan and bake on the middle rack of the oven for 15-20 minutes, or until the top is firm and the edge comes away slightly from the sides of the pan. 
  5. Once the brownies are done, remove the pan from the oven and allow it to cool slightly before transferring it to a wire rack to cool completely. While it is cooling, melt the chocolate for the drizzle in a heatproof bowl set over a pan and allow it to set before slicing into individual brownies. 

* If you don't have crunchy peanut butter on hand, chop up 1/4 c. roasted peanuts and add them (that's what I did).
** I used an 8 x 8-inch pan, because that's what I had on hand.

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