My offering for Chocolate Friday this week is a fun recipe for Christmassy brownies. This recipe can be as easy or as hard as you want to make it. If you're a "from scratch" kind of person, or if you have a ton of time on your hands and nothing to do, you could make all the ingredients from the ground up. Or the bowl up, as it were.
I'm not fussy about brownies, and as I've said many times, I'm a lazy git. So I started with a brownie mix. I did make the frosting though, because you just can't get the same flavor from the premixed frostings. If you need recipes for "scratch" brownies, try the BCCY version or the healthy brownies from Recipezaar.
Christmas Brownies w/ Candy Cane Cream Cheese Frosting
Bake brownies using your favorite mix or recipe. Since these are VERY rich, bake medium to thin. Either split into two and spread over bottom of two 8x8 pans, or spread thin over a 9x12 pan. Allow to cool.
Cream Cheese Frosting
8 oz softened cream cheese (room temp.)
1 stick butter or margarine
4 cups powdered sugar
1 tsp peppermint extract
Red food coloring
4-6 candy canes
Mix together cream cheese, butter, peppermint extract and powdered sugar until creamy. Pour a few drops of red food coloring into mixture and stir lightly with a spoon or knife, just enough to get streaks but not thoroughly blend the color. Spread thickly over brownies.
Put candy canes into a sandwich bag and crush by hammering lightly. (If you have a lot of pent up frustrations, go easy. You don't want candy cane powder!)
Sprinkle crushed candy cane over the top and press the pieces down lightly into the frosting. Chill to allow the frosting to set up. Serve to your favorite elves.
Note: If you love the combo of chocolate and peppermint like I do, add some crushed candy canes to the brownie batter and bake the flavor right in. It adds a nice little crunch, too. Hershey's makes some great Chocolate Mint candy canes that you can probably find at your local grocery store.