Category Archives: Brownies

Happy New Year Praline Brownies

Celebrating the New Year brings favorites to our entertainment food menus and New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day Celebrations.  This year “Beyond the Yum” added many new recipes to our menus but this Praline Brownie recipe really stood out to become a favorite and staple for our celebrations.

Beyond the Yum

Food & Wine magazine has really excellent recipes, suggestions and wine articles so it is no surprise that we would love their magazine.  If you want a delish recipe for the holidays or anytime you want to impress your guests and satisfy that sweet tooth try this Praline Brownie recipe by Pastry chef Kelly Fields of Willa Jean in New Orleans that was featured in Food&Wine.  Happy New Year & Bon Appetit!


Chocolate Valentine Puddle of Love

How much do I love creating big, yummy, delicious concoctions and seeing Jay feast on them and my guests go  “WOW! That is amazing” when they bite into these decadent desserts. So without further adieu, here is the 2013 Valentine dessert I created especially for Jay. It is entitled “Chocolate Valentine Puddle of Love” because that is what it looks like. We love dark and white chocolate, orange crème, cheesecake, and with all incorporated into one dessert — Oh my yum, just heavenly!
Chocolate Valentine Puddle of Love

This recipe creates two separate brownies:
“Yummylicious Melt-In-Your-Mouth Fudge Brownies” 
“White Chocolate Orange Blondies” [below]
“Orange Cream Cheese Filling” [below]
“Chocolate Ganache” [below]

Prepare: Yummylicious Melt-In-Your-Mouth Fudge Brownies” 

Prepare:  “White Chocolate Orange Blondies”

White Chocolate Orange Blondies

1/2 pound, plus 1 teaspoon butter, at room temperature
1 1/2 cups light brown sugar
2 eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon orange extract
2 teaspoons of orange zest.
3 cups plus 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 cups white chocolate chips


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Place 1/2 pound of the butter and the brown sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Cream the butter and sugar on medium speed until a smooth batter is formed. While the machine is running, add the eggs, vanilla and orange extracts, and orange zest, until incorporated into the batter.

Sift together 3 cups flour and baking powder. Slowly add the flour mixture to the batter and mix on low speed until a dough is formed. Very gently, by turning the mixer on and then off, fold the chips into the dough.

Once the dough is all blended, grease a 9 by 9-inch baking pan with the remaining butter and dust with the 1 tablespoon of flour. Pour the batter into the pan and place in the preheated oven. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until set yet still moist.*

Prepare Orange Cream Cheese Filling:

Orange Cream Cheese Filling
1 8oz package cream cheese
1/4-1/2 cup powdered sugar to taste
1 teaspoons vanilla
1/4 teaspoons orange extract
2 teaspoons orange zest

Set aside until assembly.

Dark Chocolate Ganache

• 1 1/2 c. Heavy cream
• 2 Tbsp. Unsalted butter
• 18 ounce Dark or Semi-Sweet chocolate, minced into 1/2-oz pieces


Heat the heavy cream and the butter in a 3-qt saucepan over medium high heat. Bring to a boil. Place the Semi-Sweet chocolate in a 3-qt stainless steel bowl. Pour the boiling cream over the chocolate and allow to stand for 5 minutes. Stir until smooth.  Set aside until assembly.

Chocolate Valentine Puddle of Love


1.  Cut brownies into servicing-size pieces.
2.  Layer first one Fudge Brownie on plate.
3.  Top with Orange Cream Cheese Filling.
4.  Layer one White Chocolate Orange Blondie on top of Cream Cheese Filing.
5.  Top with Orange Cream Cheese Filing.
6.  Layer second Fudge Brownie on top of Cream Cheese Filling.
7.  Pour Chocolate Ganache over top to puddle on plate.
8.  Garnish with dollop of whipped cream or fresh cut fruit.
9.  Serve with dry Cabernet Sauvignon or coffee.
10.  Jump into the puddle and enjoy!

* White Chocolate Orange Blondies recipe based in part on original recipe by Emeril Lagasse, 2002

Chocolate Ganache & Maple Cream Bacon Cupcakes

Chocolate Ganache & Maple Cream Bacon Cupcakes

This is a wonderful cupcake filled with such good things it makes your heart smile!  The cakes themselves can be made from scratch as indicated or you can get that yummy “Ghiradelli Triple Chocolate Brownie Mix” which makes a delish version too.*  I make them both so as your time permits, go for them, you and your guests will be in chocolate sweet and salty cupcake heaven!


3 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons coarse salt
3 sticks unsalted butter, cut into pieces
12 ounces unsweetened chocolate, coarsely chopped
3 cups sugar
6 large eggs, room temperature
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract

Maple Cream Cheese Filling:
1 package Philadelphia Cream Cheese
2 Tablespoons Pure Maple Syrup
1/4 cup powdered sugar

Bacon Topping:
 6-10 pieces of bacon fried crisp, chopped

Chocolate Ganache
12 ounces of dark chocolate (chopped or chips)
4 ounces of semisweet Chocolate (chopped or chips)
2 cups heavy cream  2 tablespoons granulated sugar


1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line standard muffin tins with paper liners.

2.  Whisk flour, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl. Place butter and chocolate in a heatproof mixer bowl set over a pot of simmering water, stirring until chocolate melts.

3.  Attach bowl to mixer, add sugar, and whisk on medium-high speed until smooth, about 3 minutes. Beat in eggs, 1 at a time, then vanilla. Reduce speed to low, and add flour mixture.

4.  Divide batter among muffin cups, filling each 2/3 full.  Bake about 18 minutes. Let cool in tins and pan on wire racks.

5.  Assemble Pastry Bag with medium round tip and fill with Maple Cream Cheese filling. Punch hole in center of cupcake and pipe filling in until filled. Smooth off excess.

6.  Frost cupcakes with chocolate ganache. Garnish tops with chopped bacon.

Directions:  Maple Cream Cheese Filling
– Melt cream cheese in microwave until soft.
– Add 2 tablespoons of maple syrup. Stir until smooth.
– Add 1/4 cup sifted powdered sugar. Stir until smooth.
– Set in fridge until assembly

Directions:  Chocolate Ganache
– Place chocolate in a large bowl.
– Heat 2 cups heavy cream and 2 tablespoons of sugar in small saucepan over medium high heat.  When not, stir to dissolve the sugar.  Bring to a boil.  Pour the boiling cream over the chocolate.
– Set aside for 5 minutes before stirring with a wire whisk until smooth.

* Tips:
If you use the Ghiradelli version, add two eggs to the package mix.
If you like strong Maple taste, add a few drops of Maple Extract.
Add a dash of cinnamon for extra spice.
Versions:  Add mini chocolate chips or pecan chips to cupcake mixture.
Plating:  Drizzle Maple Syrup or Chocolate Syrup on plate;  a dollop of whipped cream, chocolate covered strawberries or glazed pecans make it irresistible!

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