Brown Eyed Baker https://www.browneyedbaker.com A food blog with easy, decadent recipes. Thu, 29 Jun 2017 04:01:42 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.8 Coconut Cake with Coconut Meringue Buttercream Frosting https://www.browneyedbaker.com/coconut-cake-recipe/ https://www.browneyedbaker.com/coconut-cake-recipe/#comments Thu, 29 Jun 2017 04:01:42 +0000 http://www.browneyedbaker.com/?p=24854 Coconut-Vanilla Bean Cake with Coconut Meringue Buttercream Frosting – A super moist coconut-packed layer cake and that frosting is a DREAM! This coconut cake was originally an Easter project four years ago, and it was a big hit. Since originally posting it, some readers have commented that the cake is way too dense, and as […]

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Coconut-Vanilla Bean Cake with Coconut Meringue Buttercream Frosting – A super moist coconut-packed layer cake and that frosting is a DREAM!

Coconut-Vanilla Bean Cake with Coconut Meringue Buttercream Frosting - A super moist coconut-packed layer cake and that frosting is a DREAM!

This coconut cake was originally an Easter project four years ago, and it was a big hit. Since originally posting it, some readers have commented that the cake is way too dense, and as time has passed and my memory faded, I began to wonder if maybe it wasn’t as outstanding as I remembered. So, I whipped it up again for Sunday dinner a few weeks ago and asked my family for their most critical reviews (they do a great job giving me their honest opinions).

They all agreed that it was fabulous with loads of coconut flavor and yes, it is denser than a traditional “fluffy” cake, but that it was just different, not in a bad way. The texture is a little crumbly thanks to being packed full of shredded coconut, but again, everyone thought it was a given that with actual coconut in the batter the texture would be different.

SO! There you have it, this coconut cake gets two thumbs up from my crew again!

This recipe hails from the Flour cookbook, which is the origin of the amazing vanilla cream-filled doughnuts that I made ages ago (and are still insanely popular!). I loved the description from the start. Not only is there shredded coconut in the cake as well as on the cake, but there is also coconut milk in the cake itself and in the frosting. Need more evidence that this is quite possibly the best coconut cake, ever? The seeds of an entire vanilla bean are scraped right into the cake batter. That sealed the deal for me. A cake that’s bursting with coconut flavor and vanilla beans? I went all-in and it turned out to be a fabulous decision.

Coconut-Vanilla Bean Cake with Coconut Meringue Buttercream Frosting - A super moist coconut-packed layer cake and that frosting is a DREAM!

I took particular interest in the fact that the frosting was actually a meringue buttercream. I had only made one once before (see: Strawberry Cupcakes with Strawberry Meringue Buttercream), and while it’s not as quick or easy as your standard butter and powdered sugar frosting, it’s absolutely delicious. Actually, more like phenomenal. This coconut version lived up to the hype, as well. A meringue buttercream almost has the consistency of satin; it’s not nearly as heavy as a powdered sugar-based frosting and it melts in your mouth. I could have easily eaten this frosting by the spoonful (and did, in fact, eat more than my fair share by the finger-ful).

How to Troubleshoot Swiss Meringue Buttercream

While Swiss meringue is an absolutely fabulous frosting, it can give fits at times (this one has done it to me!). Below are the two most common issues people have with Swiss meringue and how to fix them:

  • Frosting is Curdling – Ick! When this happens, the frosting will resemble cottage cheese. To fix it, take a quarter of the frosting, transfer to a glass bowl and microwave for 15 minutes. With the mixer running on low, slowly stream it back into the bowl with the remaining frosting. Increase the mixer speed and whip until fluffy and smooth.
  • Frosting is Runny – The frosting has the consistency of thick syrup and doesn’t even hold soft peaks. When this happens, transfer the bowl of frosting to the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes. Beat again for about 5 minutes, until thick, fluffy and smooth.

The layering of coconut flavors in this cake is spectacular. While the coconut shines through, it’s not overpowering in the least; instead, it delivers quite a light, fresh-tasting cake. It’s perfect for any holiday, especially Easter or a spring or summer special occasion. You could dress it up with toasted coconut, colorful egg-shaped candies, or leave it as-is. However you choose to decorate it, you’re guaranteed to absolutely devour this cake.

Coconut-Vanilla Bean Cake with Coconut Meringue Buttercream Frosting - A super moist coconut-packed layer cake and that frosting is a DREAM!

One year ago: Favorite Italian Pasta Salad
Five years ago: Red, White & Blue Firecracker Popsicles
Six years ago: Zucchini Squares
Ten years ago: Blueberry Crisp

3.5
3.5 / 5 (2 Reviews)
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Coconut-Vanilla Bean Cake with Coconut Meringue Buttercream Frosting

A fabulous, moist coconut cake studded with vanilla beans is filled and coated with a coconut meringue buttercream frosting.

Ingredients:

For the Cake:

  • 2¼ cups (271 grams) cake flour
  • 1¼ cups (248) granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¾ cup (170 grams) unsalted butter, at room temperature, cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 6 egg whites
  • 1 cup (237 ml) coconut milk
  • 1 cup (85 grams) sweetened shredded coconut
  • 1 vanilla bean, split in half lengthwise

For the Frosting:

  • 1½ cups (298 grams) granulated sugar
  • 6 egg whites
  • 1½ cups (340 grams) unsalted butter, at room temperature, cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ⅔ cup (158 ml) coconut milk

For the Garnish:

  • 1 cup (85 grams) sweetened shredded coconut

Directions:

  1. Make the Cake: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour two 8-inch round cake pans; set aside.
  2. Sift the cake flour into the bowl of an electric mixer. Add the sugar, baking powder and salt and beat on low speed for 15 seconds to combine. Add the butter pieces and beat on low speed for 1 minute, or until the mixture is coarse and crumbly.
  3. In a separate medium bowl, whisk together the egg whites, coconut milk and the 1 cup shredded coconut until combined. Scrape the seeds from the vanilla bean into the mixture and whisk to thoroughly incorporate the seeds throughout the mixture.
  4. Add half of the coconut milk mixture to the dry ingredients and beat on medium-high for 1 minute. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl, add the remainder of the coconut milk mixture and beat on medium speed for 30 seconds, or until the batter is well-mixed, light and fluffy.
  5. Divide the batter evenly between the cake pans and bake for 35 to 45 minutes, or until the tops are firm and golden brown and spring back when pressed lightly in the center. Let the cakes cool completely in the pans on a wire rack.
  6. Make the Frosting: In a small, heatproof bowl, whisk together the sugar and egg whites. Place the bowl on top of a saucepan with about an inch of simmering water (do not let the bottom of the bowl touch the water). Heat the mixture, whisking occasionally, for 6 to 8 minutes, or until the mixture is hot to the touch and the sugar is dissolved.
  7. Remove the bowl from the heat and transfer the mixture into the bowl of an electric mixer. Using the whisk attachment, whip on medium-high speed for 6 to 8 minutes, or until the mixture becomes a light, white meringue and the mixture is cool to the touch. Reduce the speed to low and add the butter a couple of pieces at a time. Increase the speed to medium and mix for 4 to 5 minutes, or until the butter is thoroughly incorporated and the frosting is smooth and glossy. The frosting may initially look curdled after adding the butter, but continue beating and it will come together, looking smooth and creamy by the end of the mixing time.
  8. Add the vanilla extract, salt and coconut milk and whip for another few minutes on medium speed, or until the coconut milk is thoroughly incorporated and the frosting is smooth. Again, the buttercream may look thin and separated, but continue mixing until it comes together. It will be more of a satin-like consistency, versus the thick powdered sugar frostings that are often used.  Note: Use the frosting within 30 minutes, or transfer to an airtight container and store at room temperature for up to 1 day, then beat with a mixer (using the paddle attachment) until smooth before using. You can also store the frosting in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks, then bring to room temperature and beat with a mixer (using the paddle attachment) for 6 to 8 minutes until smooth before using.
  9. Assemble the Cake: Remove the cooled cakes from their pans and level the tops, if necessary. Place one cake layer on a cake stand and top with 2 cups of the frosting, using an offset spatula to spread it evenly to the edges.
  10. Place the second layer on top, top-side down. Spoon 1 cup of the frosting onto the top of the cake and use a large offset spatula to spread the frosting on top and over the sides of the cake, covering it with a very thin layer (this is the crumb coat). Refrigerate for 20 minutes.
  11. Use a wooden spoon to mix the remaining frosting to lighten it up since it has been sitting. Spoon it onto the cake and spread it evenly over the top and down the sides. Use an offset spatula to create a smooth finish. Press the 1 cup shredded coconut onto the top and sides of the frosted cake. The cake can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.

Did you make this recipe?

Leave a review below, then snap a picture and tag @thebrowneyedbaker on Instagram so I can see it!

(Recipe from the  Flour cookbook)

All images and text ©

This recipe was originally published on March 28, 2013.

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Blueberry Crumb Bars https://www.browneyedbaker.com/blueberry-crumb-bars-recipe/ https://www.browneyedbaker.com/blueberry-crumb-bars-recipe/#comments Tue, 27 Jun 2017 04:01:01 +0000 http://www.browneyedbaker.com/?p=26654 These blueberry crumb bars are crazy easy to make and, dare I say, could rival your favorite blueberry pie recipe.

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These blueberry crumb bars are crazy easy to make and could, dare I say, rival your favorite blueberry pie recipe. You can pick them up and eat them on the go, which makes them a perfect dessert for picnics and summer parties!

Blueberry Crumb Bars - A big stack waiting for your summer party!

Ahh, sweet blueberries. I am positively obsessed with them right now. I’ve been eating them by the handful… and with cottage cheese… and in a bowl of cinnamon shredded wheat… and in every baked good I can possibly imagine. I can’t imagine a day when I’ll ever tire of baking with blueberries. This past weekend, I decided to combine blueberries with one of my favorite desserts – crumb bars! Give me anything with a crumb topping and I’ll devour it faster than you can say “butter”. Quite a few years ago, I made peach crumb bars, which I successfully turned into blueberry crumb bars. If you can go wrong with fresh fruit and a buttery crumb crust and topping, I haven’t found a way.

Blueberry Crumb Bars - An overhead look at three blueberry crumb bars waiting to be gobbled up!

I’m sure you could easily adapt these bars to use up whatever type of berry you have in your fridge, but I am definitely partial to the blueberry. It’s my favorite of the berry family, plus I just love that beautiful purple color that baked blueberries exude.

These bars exceptionally easy (and quick!) to make, so no excuses… grab a big container of plump, juicy blueberries and hop into the kitchen!

Prepare yourself for the fact that you will continue to cut “just a little piece” until half of the pan is gone. It’s unavoidable; just don’t say I didn’t warn you!

Blueberry Crumb Bars - A fabulous blueberry filling between two layers of crumb mixture!

One year ago: Cherry Coke Float Cupcakes
Four years ago: Strawberry Pimm’s Cup Cocktail
Five years ago: S’mores Ice Cream

Did you make this recipe?
Leave a review »

Blueberry Crumb Bars

Crumb bars loaded in the middle with fresh blueberries.

Ingredients:

For the Crumb

  • 3 cups (425 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup (198 grams) granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (227 grams) cold unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
  • 1 egg

For the Blueberry Filling

  • 4 cups (20 ounces) fresh blueberries
  • ½ cup (99 grams) granulated sugar
  • 4 teaspoons cornstarch
  • Juice of one lemon (about 3 tablespoons)

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Lightly grease a 9×13-inch baking pan.
  2. Make the Crumb: In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Use a fork or pastry cutter to blend in the butter, and then the egg (the dough will be crumbly). Press half of dough into the prepared pan.
  3. Make the Filling: In a separate large bowl, whisk together the sugar, cornstarch and lemon juice. Gently fold in the blueberries to coat evenly with the sugar mixture. Spread the blueberry mixture evenly over the crust, drizzling any excess juice in the bowl over the filling. Crumble the remaining dough evenly over the blueberry layer.
  4. Bake for 45 to 50 minutes, or until the top is light golden brown. Cool completely before cutting into squares. Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container or wrapped in plastic wrap at room temperature or in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.

Did you make this recipe?

Leave a review below, then snap a picture and tag @thebrowneyedbaker on Instagram so I can see it!

(Recipe adapted from Allrecipes.com; originally seen on Smitten Kitchen)

All images and text ©

This recipe was originally published on July 23, 2013.

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The Weekend Dish: 6/24/2017 https://www.browneyedbaker.com/weekend-dish-6242017/ https://www.browneyedbaker.com/weekend-dish-6242017/#comments Sat, 24 Jun 2017 04:01:03 +0000 https://www.browneyedbaker.com/?p=37544 Hellooooo Saturday! This has been, quite possibly, the longest week in the history of ever. Multiple doctor’s appointments with the boys, regular activities, early morning (as in, times that start with the number FOUR) teething wake-ups from Dominic, Joseph coming down with a cold yesterday and, as I type this at 9:40pm Friday night, he […]

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Hellooooo Saturday!

This has been, quite possibly, the longest week in the history of ever. Multiple doctor’s appointments with the boys, regular activities, early morning (as in, times that start with the number FOUR) teething wake-ups from Dominic, Joseph coming down with a cold yesterday and, as I type this at 9:40pm Friday night, he is still not sleeping (he’s usually asleep by 7:30 at the latest)… I am 100% over this week.

SO… that’s where we are. Tell me about your weekend! 🙂

As always, you’ll find a recap of what was posted to the site this week, the most shared recipes, my Sunday dinner menu, and recipes I’ve bookmarked from other blogs. Enjoy!

On Brown Eyed Baker This Week

Sweet and Salty Brownies – These are the ULTIMATE salted caramel brownie! The batter from the super popular Baked brownie is used, with a layer homemade salted caramel baked right into the middle.

Sweet and Salty Brownies - Up close and personal with the best salted caramel brownies!

The Best Easy Crab Dip – This is the BEST easy crab dip – full of flavor and perfect for summer parties. Dig in with your favorite chips or serve on baguettes!

Crab Dip - Grab a tortilla chip and take a big ol' scoop!

Friday Things – Another allergy test, emojis, Pinterest, and more…

Top 5 Most Popular Posts This Week:

1. Refrigerator Bread and Butter Pickles

2. No Bake Chocolate, Peanut Butter & Oatmeal Cookies

3. Best Ever Potato Salad

4. No Bake Banana Split Dessert

5. Garlic-Herb & Parmesan Roasted Red Potatoes

Sunday Dinner Menu

Rigatoni with meat sauce and meatballs
Garlic bread
Tossed salad

What I Bookmarked This Week

Recipes and posts from other blogs that I thought looked especially delicious and that I thought you would like, too:

I’m going to be daydreaming about no bake Reese’s Pieces peanut butter bars for the foreseeable future.

No churn roasted s’mores ice cream is a serious summer win.

I keep meaning to buy Milk Bar Life, and these salted chocolate chip cookies just pushed me over the edge.

Hello Snickers lovers! Make this Snickers blondie tart.

Strawberry cream slab pie is going to make my summer.

Have a delicious weekend!

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Friday Things https://www.browneyedbaker.com/friday-things-227/ https://www.browneyedbaker.com/friday-things-227/#comments Fri, 23 Jun 2017 04:01:47 +0000 https://www.browneyedbaker.com/?p=37526 1. Joseph had another oral challenge at the allergist this week and… HE PASSED! This one was for walnuts, as we’re working our way through the tree nuts. He had previously passed almonds, and next up in July will be pecans. These tests are so long and stressful, but each one he passes is a […]

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1. Joseph had another oral challenge at the allergist this week and… HE PASSED! This one was for walnuts, as we’re working our way through the tree nuts. He had previously passed almonds, and next up in July will be pecans. These tests are so long and stressful, but each one he passes is a massive sigh of relief. He can enjoy nut rolls at Christmas now that walnut is crossed off the list!

He’s also been pretty obsessed with hockey since we were watching a lot of here over the last few weeks, so my husband got him a little hockey set for in the basement and that is all he ever wants to do. He wakes up asking to go play hockey, after breakfast, after/before ANYTHING, he wants to go play hockey. Love!

2. Doing laundry used to be a simple little chore for me, but now getting laundry done, folded and put away within 24 hours seriously seems like a monumental accomplishment. I get absurdly proud of myself if I can do it.

3. On the subject taking care of household stuff, the folks at MacGill sent me one of their first aid kits, which was great since we actually did not have one. This is seriously THE BEST first aid kit I’ve ever seen – everything and anything you can think of is in there! We are now prepared for skinned knees, bee stings, and whatever else I hope NEVER happens, ha!

4. There are new emojis coming! I’m looking at you, soft pretzel.

5. Is it just me, or has the Pinterest Explore page turned into total junk? I feel like every other pin is some click-bait spammy type of thing for weight loss. If the old Pinterest could come back, that would be fantastic.

6. Speaking of Pinterest, I found a graphic on morning mindfulness habits, and they sound great, but seriously whoever dreamed this up either a) does not have children, or b) gets up at 3:30am to get it all in before their kids get up. I mean, shower meditation? Coffee ritual? Eat breakfast mindfully? Ha… Ha… Hahahahahaha.

7. I just found that they actually make ice cream sandwich molds! Crazy! (If you’re not afraid of a little more work, I actually have a recipe from awhile back for old-fashioned ice cream sandwiches and they’re delicious!)

8. While we’re on the subject of ice cream, I’m dying for a soft serve ice cream cone – chocolate/vanilla twist with chocolate sprinkles, please! We haven’t gone to a soft serve place since Joseph was a baby because it’s one of the places that’s pretty much off-limits with his peanut allergy. Womp womp. I hope there’s a day sometime in the future when he can sit outside in the summer sun licking an ice cream cone.

9. I procrastinated yesterday and got all of the 2017-18 NHL schedule plugged into my Google calendar, because after the boys and work, I live and breathe hockey season. I’m ready to start all over again!

10. TGIF! While Joseph and I were hanging out at the allergist, Duke and Dominic were patrolling the neighborhood (they both took their job VERY seriously, ha!).

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The Best Easy Crab Dip https://www.browneyedbaker.com/crab-dip-recipe/ https://www.browneyedbaker.com/crab-dip-recipe/#comments Thu, 22 Jun 2017 04:01:01 +0000 http://www.browneyedbaker.com/?p=25663 This is the BEST easy crab dip - full of flavor and perfect for summer parties. Dig in with your favorite chips or serve on baguettes!

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This is the BEST easy crab dip – full of flavor and perfect for summer parties. It always reminds me of visiting Maryland and sitting at a restaurant outside on the water. Dig in with your favorite chips or serve on baguettes!

Crab Dip - Grab a tortilla chip and take a big ol' scoop!

Crab dip always makes me think of summer – warm, breezy days sitting somewhere near water and enjoying a meal without a care in the world. When my husband lived outside of Washington, D.C., we ate at a lot of restaurants when I would visit for the weekend. Crab dip was always one of our go-to appetizers, especially if it was during the spring or summer. If it was on the menu, there was a 99% chance we’d order it. Some of our favorite crab dips came from restaurants in Baltimore’s Inner Harbor and in Annapolis.

Unfortunately, you don’t find crab dip on menus nearly as often here in Pittsburgh as in the D.C. area, which means I had a kitchen project to tackle. It took a little while, but a few years ago I finally put together a crab dip recipe to rival those that we would enjoy in Maryland-area restaurants.

Crab Dip - Super easy and the best summer dip!

While the flavors and textures of the crap dips we enjoyed varied from restaurant to restaurant, there were quite a few similarities – plenty of crab, creamy, cheesy, with a pop of lemon flavor and a touch of spice. I blended together a lot of different flavors and textures to create this dip and was thrilled with the result. It reminded me of sitting outside, the warm sun on my face, enjoying a leisurely weekend lunch (sidebar: with two little ones around, that seriously feels like an entire lifetime ago! I no longer have any idea what a “leisurely” weekend lunch is, ha!)

This is a fabulous appetizer for any summertime get-together; it will be devoured in no time.

Crab Dip is so full of flavor and the perfect summer appetizer.

One year ago: Oven-Fried Onion Rings
Two years ago: Banana Cream Pie
Five years ago: Cookies and Cream Ice Cream Cake
Six years ago: Strawberry-Rhubarb Pie
Seven years ago: Black Forest Cake

Did you make this recipe?
Leave a review »

Crab Dip

An easy recipe for crab dip – warm, cheesy, full of flavor, and perfect for parties.

Ingredients:

For the Dip

  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 small red bell pepper, finely chopped
  • 1 small yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 16 ounces lump crab meat (drained, if canned)
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1 cup (227 grams) mayonnaise
  • 4 ounces Monterey Jack cheese, shredded (1 cup shredded)
  • ¼ cup (28 grams) Parmesan cheese
  • 3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
  • 1½ teaspoons Old Bay seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon hot sauce

For the Topping

  • ½ cup (30 grams) Panko bread crumbs
  • 1 tablespoon Parmesan cheese
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Grease a 1½-quart casserole dish; set aside.
  2. Heat the olive oil over medium-high heat in a large skillet. Add the red pepper and onion and cook until softened and all moisture has evaporated, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for an additional 30 seconds to 1 minute, or until fragrant. Remove the mixture to a large bowl and allow to cool.
  3. Add the rest of the dip ingredients to the bowl with the pepper mixture and gently stir together until combined, being careful not to smash the crab meat too much. Transfer the mixture to the prepared casserole dish.
  4. With a fork, toss together the bread crumbs, Parmesan and melted butter and sprinkle evenly over the top of the dip.
  5. Bake for 20 minutes, or until golden brown and bubbly. Allow to rest for 10 minutes before serving. Serve with baguette slices or your favorite tortilla or pita chips. Refrigerate any leftovers in an airtight container for up to 2 days.

Did you make this recipe?

Leave a review below, then snap a picture and tag @thebrowneyedbaker on Instagram so I can see it!

All images and text ©

This recipe was originally published on May 21, 2003.

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Sweet and Salty Brownies https://www.browneyedbaker.com/sweet-and-salty-brownies/ https://www.browneyedbaker.com/sweet-and-salty-brownies/#comments Tue, 20 Jun 2017 04:01:23 +0000 http://www.browneyedbaker.com/?p=12156 These are the ULTIMATE salted caramel brownie! The batter from the super popular Baked brownie is used, with a layer homemade salted caramel baked right into the middle. Sprinkled with fleur de sel and coarse sugar, it's a sweet/salty lover's dream!

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These are the ULTIMATE salted caramel brownie! The batter from the super popular Baked brownie is used, with a layer homemade salted caramel baked right into the middle. Sprinkled with fleur de sel and coarse sugar, it’s a sweet/salty lover’s dream!

Sweet and Salty Brownies - The ultimate salted caramel brownie!

When my husband and I first started dating, he was living and working outside of Washington, DC; we did the long distance thing for about three years before he packed up and moved back home to Pittsburgh. We would visit each other on weekends, and going out there always felt like little mini-vacations. We found so many fun things to do, and one of our favorites when the weather wasn’t too sweltering was going to the Leesburg Outlets to walk around and shop.

During one of our shopping trips, I happened upon a sidewalk sale that had a massive stack of Baked Explorations cookbooks on clearance. It is the second in the Baked cookbook series (you know, the book that brought us the Baked Brownie and Root Beer Float Cake, mmm!). I snatched it up, and couldn’t wait to get in the car to start browsing through it. These sweet and salty brownies jumped off the page at me, and I knew immediately they would be the first thing I’d bake from the book. All these years later, I’m still so happy I made that decision because if you’re looking for salted caramel brownies, look no further. These are THE BEST.

Sweet and Salty Brownies - Up close and personal with the best salted caramel brownies!

These brownies are a take on the fabulous Baked brownie, which are dense, fudgy and the most delicious brownie I have ever had. This recipe slaps a layer of salted caramel in the middle and then sprinkles a combination of fleur de sel and coarse sugar on top. I had previously made salted caramel brownies where I swirled the caramel into the brownie batter, but the salted caramel in these brownies are baked right into a middle layer, so it essentially becomes part of the brownie batter. You can definitely taste it in there and the saltiness it imparts, along with the salt sprinkled on top, is a wonderful balance to the sweet richness of the brownie batter. These are definitely killer salted caramel brownies.

The salted caramel trend has been around for quite a long time now, and I don’t foresee it going anywhere anytime soon, so might as well hop right on that bandwagon, whip up a batch of salted caramel sauce, and make these babies.

Taking a BIG bite out of the best salted caramel brownies

Four years ago: Chocolate Bundt Cake with Chocolate Fudge Frosting
Five years ago: Golden Grahams S’mores Bars

Did you make this recipe?
Leave a review »

Sweet and Salty Brownies

These are the ULTIMATE salted caramel brownie! The batter from the super popular Baked brownie is used, with a layer homemade salted caramel baked right into the middle. Sprinkled with fleur de sel and coarse sugar, it’s a sweet/salty lover’s dream!

Ingredients:

For the Salted Caramel Filling

  • 1 cup (198 grams) granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons light corn syrup
  • ¼ cup water
  • ½ cup (120 ml) heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon fleur de sel
  • ¼ cup (57 grams) sour cream

For the Brownie Batter

  • 1¼ cups (177 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon table salt
  • 2 tablespoons Dutch-process cocoa powder
  • 11 ounces dark chocolate, coarsely chopped
  • 1 cup (227 grams) unsalted butter, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1½ cups (298 grams) granulated sugar
  • ½ cup (99 grams) light brown sugar
  • 5 eggs, at room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

For the Topping

  • 1½ teaspoons fleur de sel
  • 1 teaspoon coarse sugar

Directions:

  1. Make the Salted Caramel: In a medium saucepan, combine the sugar and corn syrup with ¼ cup water, stirring them together carefully so you don’t splash the sides of the pan. Cook over high heat until an instant-read thermometer reads 350 degrees F, or until the mixture is dark amber in color (keep a close eye on the caramel at all times, as it goes from golden brown to black and burnt very quickly), 6 to 8 minutes. Remove from the heat, and slowly add the cream (careful, it will bubble up) and then the fleur de sel. Whisk in the sour cream. Set aside to cool.
  2. Make the Brownie Batter: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  3. Butter the sides and bottom of a glass or light-colored metal 9×13-inch pan. Line the bottom with a sheet of parchment paper, and butter the parchment.
  4. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, salt and cocoa powder.
  5. Place the chocolate and butter in the bowl of a double boiler set over a pan of simmering water, and stir occasionally until the chocolate and butter are completely melted and combined. Turn off the heat, but keep the bowl over the water of the double boiler, and add both sugars. Whisk until completely combined and remove the bowl from the pan. The mixture should be at room temperature.
  6. Add three eggs to the chocolate mixture and whisk until just combined. Add the remaining eggs and whisk until just combined. Add the vanilla and stir until combined. Do not overbeat the batter at this stage, or your brownies will be cakey.
  7. Sprinkle the flour mixture over the chocolate. Using a spatula, fold the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until there is just a trace amount of the flour mixture still visible.
  8. Assemble the Brownies: Pour half of the brownie mixture into the pan and smooth the top with a spatula. Drizzle about ¾ cup of the caramel sauce over the brownie layer in a zigzag pattern, making sure the caramel doesn’t come in contact with the edges of the pan or it will burn. Use an offset spatula to spread the caramel evenly across the brownie layer, leaving about a ½-inch border around the edges. In heaping spoonfuls, scoop the rest of the brownie batter over the caramel layer. Smooth the brownie batter gently to cover the caramel layer.
  9. Bake the brownies for 30 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through the baking time, and check to make sure the brownies are completely done by sticking a toothpick into the center of the pan. The brownies are done when the toothpick comes out with a few moist crumbs.
  10. Remove the brownies from the oven and sprinkle with the fleur de sel and coarse sugar. Cool the brownies completely before cutting and serving. The brownies can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 4 days. They also freeze extremely well!

Recipe Notes:

  • You will not use all of the salted caramel sauce for the brownies; store the remainder in the refrigerator for drizzling on ice cream (or eating with a spoon). Use within 2 weeks.
  • You can use your favorite homemade salted caramel sauce, or store-bought, if you’d prefer.

Did you make this recipe?

Leave a review below, then snap a picture and tag @thebrowneyedbaker on Instagram so I can see it!

(Recipe from Baked Explorations)

All images and text ©

BONUS! You get a little leftover salted caramel sauce to keep in your fridge for emergency situations!

A jar of salted caramel sauce from the Sweet and Salty Brownies

This recipe was originally published on June 7, 2011.

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The Weekend Dish: 6/17/2017 https://www.browneyedbaker.com/weekend-dish-6172017/ https://www.browneyedbaker.com/weekend-dish-6172017/#comments Sat, 17 Jun 2017 04:01:52 +0000 https://www.browneyedbaker.com/?p=37478 Hello hello! How is your weekend going? Are you doing anything to celebrate Father’s Day tomorrow? My husband requested burgers and hot dogs on the grill, so we’re going to be having a picnic-style Sunday dinner this week. I made a small dent in my purging last week, tackling two kitchen cabinets, and got rid […]

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Hello hello!

How is your weekend going? Are you doing anything to celebrate Father’s Day tomorrow? My husband requested burgers and hot dogs on the grill, so we’re going to be having a picnic-style Sunday dinner this week. I made a small dent in my purging last week, tackling two kitchen cabinets, and got rid of SO.MUCH.STUFF. Still so much to get through, but having free shelves is, well, freeing 🙂

As always, you’ll find a recap of what was posted to the site this week, the most shared recipes, my Sunday dinner menu, and recipes I’ve bookmarked from other blogs. Enjoy!

On Brown Eyed Baker This Week

Red, White & Blue Stained Glass Jello Stars – Stained glass Jello gets the patriotic treatment with a combination of red, white and blue, and is cut into the shape of stars. A fun and easy treat for your 4th of July celebration!

A plate of red, white and blue stained glass Jello stars.

Pretzel Strawberry Ice Cream Pie – A refreshing salty-sweet strawberry-vanilla ice cream pie with a sugar cone and pretzel crust, topped with fresh strawberry jam, hot fudge sauce, and more crushed pretzels.

A strawberry-vanilla ice cream pie with a sugar cone and pretzel crust.

Classic Gobs (a.k.a. Whoopie Pies) – An old family recipe for Gobs, otherwise known as whoopie pies – two cakey chocolate cookies with a creamy white frosting filling.

A big bite taken out of a chocolate gob cookie

Friday Things – Dominic’s 8-month update, Fitbits, sunglasses, the Stanley Cup, and more!

Dominic - 8 months old

Top 5 Most Popular Posts This Week:

1. Garlic-Herb & Parmesan Roasted Red Potatoes

2. No Bake Chocolate, Peanut Butter &
Oatmeal Cookies

3. Best Ever Potato Salad

4. No Bake Banana Split Dessert

5. No Bake Oreo Layer Dessert

Sunday Dinner Menu

Burgers and hot dogs on the grill!
Pasta salad
Fruit salad

What I Bookmarked This Week

Recipes and posts from other blogs that I thought looked especially delicious and that I thought you would like, too:

Angel food cake + strawberries and whipped cream was a summer staple when I was a kid, so I’m loving this triple berry angel food cake roll.

I’ve never had (or been to? not sure what the correct terminology is!) a shrimp boil, but I’m totally making these shrimp boil foil packs.

WANT! >> Milk and Cookies Layer Cake

Totally saving this American flag pie for the 4th of July! Gorgeous!

My summer needs this macaroni salad with smoked mozzarella and prosciutto.

Have a delicious weekend!

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Friday Things https://www.browneyedbaker.com/friday-things-226/ https://www.browneyedbaker.com/friday-things-226/#comments Fri, 16 Jun 2017 04:01:45 +0000 https://www.browneyedbaker.com/?p=37463 1. I can’t believe this little firecracker is 8 (almost 8.5) months old already! He’s zooming around everywhere (mostly chasing after Joseph and Duke), pulling himself up on furniture, and wants to do whatever Joseph is doing – he adores his big brother, a feeling that is very much reciprocated. Those two are going to […]

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Dominic - 8 months old

1. I can’t believe this little firecracker is 8 (almost 8.5) months old already! He’s zooming around everywhere (mostly chasing after Joseph and Duke), pulling himself up on furniture, and wants to do whatever Joseph is doing – he adores his big brother, a feeling that is very much reciprocated. Those two are going to have so much fun together.

2. Joseph has another allergist appointment coming up next week for a walnut test. Fingers crossed! He’s been doing great with the almond butter and Honey Nut Cheerios – no issues at all, phew!

3. I usually keep my sports talk saved for the bottom of Fridays Things, but the Penguins winning another Stanley Cup was pretty much the pinnacle of our week, so I couldn’t wait! It seemed absolutely improbable that we could win this year, so I’m stunned and elated and so very excited! It’s no secret that I’m totally emotionally invested in my hockey team, so watching the last few games have been so heart-pounding… I’m almost sad the season is over. When the season schedule comes out, I put it in my Google calendar, and I rarely miss watching a game (I know, I’m crazy diehard!); already looking forward to it again!

4. So, I’ve been entirely unproductive this week. Most of my time not spent wrangling children has been spent on Twitter and Instagram following the Stanley Cup around and hearing about all of the behind the scenes stuff. I need to get back on an organized routine, ha!

5. On that note, I came across this pretty cool exercise for small business owners that helps you identify the type of brand personality your business has >> Brandality Quiz. Fun to do if you have a business!

6. Talk to me about Fitbits. Do you have one? I’m contemplating getting one to motivate me to hit the treadmill more (or, actually, at all), and I’m wondering how helpful/useful it might be?

7. I want to get a pair of aviator sunglasses, but I have a really small face, and it’s so hard for me to find sunglasses (which is why I’ve had the same pair since 2012, that I have miraculously not lost or broken)… any other small-face ladies out there who successfully wear aviators? I know Rayban sells “junior” size and am not sure if that could work?

8. The hot weather this week has me seriously craving a pool. One day!

9. Due to all of the sports-watching we’ve been doing, we haven’t gotten past the first episode of House of Cards, but I’m hoping to get going on it within the next few days. We watched an actual MOVIE (like maybe only the 2nd or 3rd in the last year? Nothing that comes out sounds good!) last weekend – Jason Bourne (we’re huge fans of the Bourne movies) – and thought it was fantastic.

10. TGIF! I hope you have a fun weekend!

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Classic Gobs (a.k.a. Whoopie Pies) https://www.browneyedbaker.com/gobs-whoopie-pies-recipe/ https://www.browneyedbaker.com/gobs-whoopie-pies-recipe/#comments Thu, 15 Jun 2017 04:01:26 +0000 http://www.browneyedbaker.com/?p=24448 An old family recipe for Gobs, otherwise known as whoopie pies - two cakey chocolate cookies with a creamy white frosting filling.

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If you’re from western Pennsylvania, then what the rest of the world calls whoopie pies, you fondly refer to as GOBS. Two soft, cakey chocolate cookies sandwich a creamy frosting filling, and the combination is utterly addicting. Even if you think you’re not a fan of these types of cookies, this recipe will change your mind in a heartbeat! 

A big stack of chocolate gobs (otherwise known as whoopie pies)

Gobs are to western Pennsylvania what whoopie pies are to most other regions. They are quite simply two chocolate cake-like cookies that sandwich a fluffy white filling. While whoopie pies come in many different flavors and variations, gobs are most assuredly always chocolate with a white creamy filling in the middle. I ate a lot more gobs when I was a kid than I tend to do now. My mom would sometimes get them as a treat from the grocery store, and at most birthday parties, someone’s mom inevitably showed up with a plate of gobs. They were just one of those things that were always around as a kid, and now as an adult, I realized that I totally took them for granted, especially in the wake of the whoopie pie craze. My mom had given me a copy of her recipe, which she received from her friend Karen umpteen years ago, and here it is!

Piping filling onto chocolate gobs.

I love how incredibly easy these are to make, not to mention how fast they bake! You can certainly make them larger or smaller if you’d like; I experimented with a few different sizes and found these to be perfect in terms of my personal preference. They’re large enough that you don’t feel like you need to eat more than one to get your fill, and not so big that you feel as though you totally gorged when you’re done eating one.

The original recipe for the frosting used shortening, but I’ve since switched to using all butter – it tastes SO much better!

A big stack of chocolate gobs

While I still haven’t been able to nail down the origin of the name “gobs” (it’s bugging me!), I’m so happy to have resurrected this recipe. They stirred up great memories, and reminded me that I need to make them more often! I sent a large plate of these into work with my mom, and she had more than one coworker tell her that these gobs were the best they’d ever tasted. I have no idea where my mom’s friend got the recipe, but it’s definitely a winner!

Two perfect little gobs sitting on a plate.

One year ago: Kale and Brussels Sprouts Salad with Homemade Poppy Seed Dressing
Two years ago: Top 10 List: Best Breakfast Recipes

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Gobs (a.k.a. Whoopie Pies)

A classic! Cakey chocolate cookies with a creamy frosting in the middle.

Ingredients:

For the Gobs:

  • 2 cups (283 grams) all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup (43 grams) unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup (92 grams) vegetable shortening
  • 1 cup (198 grams) granulated sugar
  • 1 whole egg
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ cup (120 ml) buttermilk
  • ½ cup (120 ml) hot water

For the Filling:

  • 1½ cups (256 grams) marshmallow fluff
  • 1¼ cups (283 grams) unsalted butter
  • 1 cup (113 grams) powdered sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper; set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt; set aside.
  3. Using an electric mixer, cream together the shortening and sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the egg, egg yolk and vanilla extract and beat for another 1 to 2 minutes, or until completely smooth and combined. Reduce the mixer speed to low, add one-third of the flour mixture and beat until just combined. Add the buttermilk and mix again, followed by another third of the flour mixture, the hot water, and then the remaining flour mixture. Give the batter a few quick folds with a rubber spatula to ensure all of the ingredients are incorporated.
  4. Drop the dough onto the parchment-lined baking sheets using a medium cookie scoop (about 1½ tablespoons of dough). Bake in the preheated oven for 5 to 6 minutes. The cookies should look puffed and completely set. Let cool on the baking sheets for about 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
  5. Make the Filling: Cream together the marshmallow fluff and butter on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Reduce the speed to low and add the powdered sugar, salt, and vanilla extract; mix until all of the sugar has been incorporated, then increase the speed to medium and beat for another 3 to 5 minutes, until the mixture is light and fluffy.
  6. Assemble the Gobs: Using a pastry bag with round decorating tip, or a spoon, spread some of the filling onto the bottom side of half of the cookies. Top with the remaining cookies. The gobs can be stored at room temperature in an airtight container for up to 5 days.

Recipe Notes:

  • When this recipe was originally posted, there was a typo in the amount of water and buttermilk; the correct amounts are now reflected in the recipe. My apologies for the inconvenience.
  • This recipe is easy doubled.
  • You can make mini gobs by using a small cookie scoop (or about 2 teaspoons of dough). Reduce the baking time by 1 to 2 minutes.

Did you make this recipe?

Leave a review below, then snap a picture and tag @thebrowneyedbaker on Instagram so I can see it!

All images and text ©

A big bite taken out of a chocolate gob cookie

This recipe was originally published on February 25, 2013.

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Pretzel Strawberry Ice Cream Pie https://www.browneyedbaker.com/pretzel-strawberry-ice-cream-pie/ https://www.browneyedbaker.com/pretzel-strawberry-ice-cream-pie/#comments Wed, 14 Jun 2017 04:01:34 +0000 https://www.browneyedbaker.com/?p=37415 A refreshing salty-sweet strawberry-vanilla ice cream pie with a sugar cone and pretzel crust, topped with fresh strawberry jam, hot fudge sauce, and more crushed pretzels.

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A refreshing salty-sweet strawberry-vanilla ice cream pie with a sugar cone and pretzel crust, topped with fresh strawberry jam, hot fudge sauce, and more crushed pretzels.

A strawberry-vanilla ice cream pie with a sugar cone and pretzel crust.

It took until nearly the middle of June, but sweltering, disgusting heat and humidity has finally reared its ugly head here in Pittsburgh, and I am less than thrilled. Summer is, by far, my least favorite season (I know, I’m the worst) unless the days are in the 70’s, no humidity, and breezy, which never happens. Summer’s saving grace, though, is that it allows you to eat an abundance of ice cream without a single judgement.

If you want to jazz up your ice cream and serve it in pie form instead of scooping cones, let me introduce you to the ice cream pie. It’s ice cream… in a pie plate… with a crust and toppings. It’s simple, delicious, and the perfect solution to crazy hot days that cause you to sweat in the air conditioning.

A gorgeous Pretzel Strawberry Ice Cream Pie - super refreshing!

This ice cream pie is super easy to make and totally versatile – change up the fruit, the crust, the toppings – anything goes!

I took chopped up strawberries and made a quick little homemade strawberry jam and folded most of it into vanilla ice cream and loaded it on top of a crushed sugar cone and pretzel crust (oh my!). I love the little bits of strawberry inside the creamy vanilla ice cream. Once it’s totally frozen, spread more of that jam on top, sprinkle on a little more crushed pretzels, and drizzle with hot fudge sauce. (I still had a little bit of hot fudge sauce from the s’mores layer cake in the refrigerator, so I used that, but THIS is also a great hot fudge sauce recipe if you’re looking for one!)

Do you do ice cream pies? Tell me about your favorites!

Taking a big bite out of a slice of Pretzel Strawberry Ice Cream Pie

One year ago: Baking Basics: My Must-Have Ingredients
Five years ago: German Chocolate Cake

Did you make this recipe?
Leave a review »

Pretzel Strawberry Ice Cream Pie

A refreshing salty-sweet strawberry-vanilla ice cream pie with a sugar cone and pretzel crust, topped with fresh strawberry jam, hot fudge sauce, and more crushed pretzels.

Ingredients:

For the Crust

  • 6 sugar cones (72 grams), crushed
  • ½ cup (35 grams) crushed pretzels
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

For the Pie

  • 2 cups (12 ounces) finely chopped fresh strawberries, divided
  • ½ cup (99 grams) granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 4 cups (528 grams) vanilla ice cream, softened

For the Toppings

  • 2 tablespoons hot fudge sauce
  • 1 tablespoon crushed pretzels

Directions:

  1. Make the Crust: Combine the crushed sugar cones and the crushed pretzels in a medium bowl. Drizzle with the butter and toss with a fork until thoroughly combined. Press the mixture into the bottom and up the sides of a pie plate. Place in the freezer while you prepare the filling.
  2. Make the Filling: In a small saucepan, combine 1 cup of the strawberries, the sugar, lemon juice, and cornstarch; cook over medium heat until it is thickened and bubbling. Reduce the heat to low and cook for 2 more minutes. Remove from the heat and cool for 5 minutes, then stir in the remaining 1 cup chopped strawberries. Cool to room temperature, then transfer ½ cup of the strawberry mixture to a covered container and store in the refrigerator (it will be used for the topping).
  3. Using a rubber spatula, fold the remaining strawberry mixture into the ice cream until mostly combined. Spread into an even layer on top of the crust, cover with plastic wrap, and freeze for at least 8 hours, or overnight.
  4. Garnish and Serve: When ready to serve, top with the reserved strawberry mixture, the crushed pretzels, and drizzle the hot fudge sauce over top. Leftovers should be stored, covered, in the freezer.

Did you make this recipe?

Leave a review below, then snap a picture and tag @thebrowneyedbaker on Instagram so I can see it!

All images and text ©

An overhead look at Pretzel Strawberry Ice Cream Pie

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