Box-Brownies are for Babies

I don’t know anyone who doesn’t like chocolate. That might be because I don’t make friends with weirdos, but who knows?

I’ve loved making brownies since high school. I would get foil pans with plastic lids from WinCo (just like these) so that I could bake and deliver birthday brownies for friends in the same pan. Kinda cute, huh?

Unfortunately I was not a MasterChef Junior and was not advanced enough to bake brownies from scratch.

The first time I made brownies from scratch was actually when I turned 18. I used Alton Brown’s Cocoa Brownie recipe and have been using it ever since. Here’s a short video of how you make them, mess them up, and then rescue them:

I’m human. I’ve followed this recipe for 10 years and I still messed up. This is what happens when you get old!!

Anyway, I sprinkled some Maldon Sea Salt Flakes on top for visual and gustatory contrast. A light drizzle of caramel would go well with these, too!

If for some odd reason you are able to resist finishing the entire pan in one sitting (or two in the inevitable case that you have to get up to get more milk), it is best to store these in a closed container. It doesn’t have to be tightly sealed, but enough of a covering/seal to keep most of the moisture in. For this reason, I bake them in Pyrex storage containers and then pop the lids on when they are completely cooled. Yes, you can safely bake in Pyrex’s storage containers; you don’t need to get the “bakeware” with the handles. At least I think so. If you can bake in them in a toaster oven, why not a regular oven? ANYWAY.


Fluffy Pancakes

Pancakes. Some like ‘em fluffy, some like ‘em dense. Some like ‘em thin, some like ‘em thick. Most don’t know how to cook them without burning them or making them dry. I am here to help.

As in most cases, I don’t have my own magical ingredient or recipe; rather, the cooking method/steps are what make the difference.

Over the weekend, I really wanted to make pancakes because I hadn’t had them in a while. I asked my nifty Google Home Mini for an “easy pancake recipe” and Google-robot-woman guided me through this recipe from AllRecipes.

On a side note, I hadn’t used my Google Home Mini for cooking up until this weekend. I recall seeing advertisements of it mentioning how useful it is in the kitchen but I didn’t think much of it. Until I left my phone upstairs and was too lazy to go back upstairs to get it. So I Hey Google’d it and was VERY pleased. It gives you the option of skipping the ingredients list/prep, and it pauses after each ingredient to give you time to measure/grab it and also after each step. I wouldn’t always rely on it because I like to read ahead to be better prepared and understand what’s going on, but it is not a terrible option. I wish Google paid me to advertise for them but let’s face it. They don’t need me to advertise for them.

I decided to try something new and film the general process rather than type it out.

Some things to note:

  • The two teaspoons of baking powder are what help the pancakes fluff up a lot. You’ll notice the batter get more dense and thick as time goes by.

  • Stirring and folding with a spatula helps prevent whisking too much air into the batter.

  • Using a cast-iron pan is great because of how evenly they heat up as well as their ability to retain heat—all allowing the pancake to cook through more evenly.

  • Set the stove to a lower heat setting (not shown in the video, but I used 3 out of 10). Cooking them slowly helps them cook through evenly without burning. You’ll get a nice golden-brown color this way as well.

  • Wait to flip the pancake once bubbles have formed all throughout the top of the uncooked side of the pancake.

  • Don’t drizzle as much honey as i did because 1) diabetes, and 2) unnecessary.

I hope to post more often, but sometimes I don’t know what to cook/share.

Anyway, that is all, my friends. Enjoy!!!