Sugar Rush

This past quarter, I have had the wonderful opportunity to get involved with YoungLife Capernaum. I’ve fallen in love with the ministry, the leaders, and all of the new friends I’ve made. It’s one of the most joyful and loving and humbling experiences I have had in my nineteen years of life. I cannot wait to continue to grow, meet more amazing people, and take any opportunity I can through this phenomenal organization. 

I brought snack for club this past week…and definitely caused a sugar rush. The reception of my baked goods was overwhelmingly positive and served as a reminder for why I love to bake so much: its a gift of love! There was an abundance of love, smiles, and sugar in addition to the heavy plate of cookies I had. 

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“Slutty Brownies” and M&M cookies were a huge hit with this group. To make the brownies, all you have to do is press cookie dough down in a greased pan, add a layer of Oreos (I used Mega Stuf, and yes, that is a real thing), then pour on some brownie batter. Bake at 350 for 30-40 minutes, let them cool completely, and then cut them out and try not to drool. They’re rich and delicious and you should prepare yourself for all of the mind-blown people you’ll offer them to. For the M&M cookies, I made up a batch of Junk in the Trunk cookie dough and used semi-sweet and mini chocolate chips and M&M’s as my “junk.” You could call me a chocoholic. But you could also bake these and be the one to blame for an epic sugar rush. Your choice!

 

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Gluten Free PB Brownies

So, a lot of people are gluten free now-a-days. It’s a sad life, because I love my carbs. But I don’t want my flourless friends to get left out of the baking I do so often! The solution? I’ve been tampering with gluten free baking. It’s a lot easier, and much more interesting, than I anticipated. I have gotten a lot of great recipes from Baby Cakes NYC— it’s a darling little cookbook with easy to follow recipes! 

But these brownies of which I speak are kind of a cop out. In a way. If you consider Trader Joe’s to be the easy way out. In addition to the pre-made mix, I added in lots of chocolate chips and a hefty swirl of natural peanut butter. And you know what? If I didn’t know these were gluten free, I wouldn’t think there was anything fishy going on! It’s been great sharing some wheat-free love with people who don’t often come across a good baked treat.

Brownies?

Okay, these are not just brownies. These are glorified. And decadent. And soon to be gone.  

I’ve always been stumped by making brownies from scratch. It’s in the same family as Funfetti: you can’t beat the box. Oh, was I wrong. 

These brownies are special. No, no, not the kind of special you’re thinking, silly! I mean I’ve never had a brownie like this ever. They have frostingI’m truthfully not exactly sure how I managed to make it to this point in my life without them. I’m so glad that I did, though. 

Here’s the link to the recipe (http://www.cookingclassy.com/2012/09/old-fashioned-ultra-chewy-brownies-with-chocolate-cream-cheese-frosting/). Make sure to taste the frosting as you go, I like it with more cream cheese, personally. I also took the liberty of adding a tad more granulated sugar and a bunch of chocolate chips, because, well, you can never have too much chocolate. Especially when it’s already week three and you’re avoiding papers and you’ve come down with an icky sinus infection. Yeah, I’d much rather bake some beautiful brownies than deal with any of that real life stuff, anyway.