Saturday, January 4, 2014

Holiday Brownie Bites

Holiday Brownie Bites. Good anytime of the year.

During the Holidays making deserts can be daunting coupled with preparing the turkey, ham, roast and multiple side dishes. So, this might be a great alternative to satisfying your sweet tooth or highlighting the evening desserts with one single bite. Easy to make, minimal clean up and tons of fun to make with friends, family and kids.
First, you can either make the brownie bites with a at home or store bought recipe in small cupcake pans. Or, in this case go to either Lucy's or Trader Joe's and in the bakery area they will have small bites of brownies already made and very tasty.
Toppings are simple, too! Go to the local grocery store isle, fancy food store or kitchen cabinet and select toppings you'd like to taste. Samples below comprised of (from left to right):
Pure chocolate
Sprinkles with single marshmallows
Coconut and dark chocolate
Chocolate sprinkles
Chocolate sprinkles and pure chocolate
Maxi marshmallows
Coconut and marshmallows
Fan favorite ... Roasted pecans
Not seen:
Peanut butter cream cheese frosting the roasted peanuts.
Now, for the ganache! Simple too! I suggest this is where you splurge and treat you and your guest to a tasty treat. Find the best, not necessarily the most expensive, chocolate that YOU find tasty.
Trust your own taste buds, most likely if you LOVE it, your guest will like it too.
In my case I used Ghirardelli chocolate chips in semi-sweet and milk chocolate. Melt 3/4 of a packet with two tablespoons of heavy whipping cream over a double boiler. Melt the chocolate slowly using either a wooden spoon or a plastic spatula. Be patient, this part can be tricky. Chocolate is very temperamental. Rushing chocolate, stirring to quickly or having the water too hot or touching the base of the bowl and turn chocolate chips into a hardened hot mess or burnt chocolate. Which if this does occur... toss it out and start over. Nope, you can't recover chocolate once its gone into the troubled dark side.
Once the chocolate has completely melted, take the mixture off the double boiler and mix in one tablespoon of room temperature unsalted butter. Fold in the butter and watch the mixture change into a glossy gorgeous brown melted deliciousness. Go ahead, lick the spoon! I did!
Final step is to take a brownie bite and spread a teaspoon (or more) on the tops of the brownie with a butter knife, off set small spatula or just go gansta and use a spoon.  Leave the topping blank (pure chocolate #2 on board) or top with coconut, pecans, or a mixture of your favorite topping.
Looking forward to making these in different colors for Valentines, Easter, Black and White Ball, Independence day, Halloween... the possibilities are endless random of colors and imagination.
Remember, cooking with love makes everything taste better!