4th of July Cupcakes

…’Peanut Butter-Banana-Chocolate Chip Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting’…

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Chewy Cookie Bars

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On one my pinning adventures I found  this amazing cookie bar recipe from Pinterest that I had to pass on! I tried it right away and it was divine! Yes, past tense. That’s how quickly it goes! It’s a small recipe for a 9×9 or 8×8, it’s chewy, it’s sweet chocolatey, peanut buttery, and it’s irresistible! The recipe was for a basic chocolate chip, but I added peanut butter chips, oats and hazelnuts! I’m not gonna keep going on about how amazing it is because that would just be wasting your time. You need to make this asap!

Preheat your oven to 350 F.

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You will need:

1/2 cup butter

1 cup brown sugar(not packed)

1 egg

1/2 tsp vanilla

1 cup flour

1/2 tsp baking powder

pinch of baking soda

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 cup dark or semi sweet choc chips

1/4 cup peanut butter chips (instead you can add 1 tablespoon of peanut butter to the batter)

1/4 cup oats

1/4 cup chopped hazelnuts

Place the butter in the microwave for 30 seconds, or till the butter melts. Let it cool and add the sugar, vanilla and egg. Mix well. Add the flour, salt, baking powder and baking soda and mix till everything’s incorporated. Mix in the choc chips, peanut butter chips, oats, and hazelnuts. Pour the cookie dough into a greased 9×9 or 8×8 dish. Flatten the cookie dough out so it bakes evenly. The cookie dough will rise a bit. Bake it for 20 minutes. The recipe said 25, but the cookie was turning dark brown on top, so I baked it for 20 minutes, then turned the oven off and left it in so it could continue to cook through with less heat (about 10 minutes). The center will still be a little soft. Let it cool completely before cutting it into tiny squares of heaven.

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Brownies

I have been looking for the perfect brownie recipe since I was born. Yes. It’s true. And I have finally found it. Last year I thought I found the best recipe ever, but after a couple of months I found a better one, and then another. Then yesterday I realized there was something missing in all of those recipes. One was very rich but not gooey enough. Another was gooey, but if it’s possible to say, they were too gooey. And some were just like cake. And if anyone’s had a real brownie, they should be offended by cake that is sold labeled as brownies. I mean, who are you trying to fool? So anyways, I combined all my brownie recipes and out came the Godzilla (the movie’s on right now!) of all brownie recipes! It’s really simple, and it’s just the right combination of chewy and moist, but it doesn’t fall apart when you try cutting perfect little squares, and it definitely doesn’t leave a trail of crumbs when you try sneaking one.

Brownies

Ok so here it is. The recipe.
This recipe’s for a medium sized tray. I made them in a 8×8 inch cheesecake pan.

1/2 cup salted butter
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon each of salt, baking powder, and vanilla
2 eggs
1/2-3/4 cup flour
3/4 cup chocolate chips

Preheat your oven to 350 F. Grease your tin. For brownies I like using some baking paper or foil(baking paper is better), because they almost always stick.
In a sauce pan melt the butter with the sugar on low heat. Make sure it doesn’t turn into caramel! Keep stirring for about 3 minutes. Take it off the heat and keep stirring so it cools down a bit. Then, using a whisk, mix in the cocoa powder, salt, baking powder, and vanilla. You don’t really need to add the extra salt because of the salted butter, but I think it really helps in balancing out the dark chocolate flavor. Add the eggs one at a time. Don’t over mix it. The baking powder ensures the brownies rise a bit, so be nice to the eggs! Then, with a spatula, not a whisk, fold in the chocolate chips and flour. You can actually mix the two in one bowl before them to the mix. If the chocolate chips are coated with flour, they don’t sink to the bottom or cluster in one area. This mix is pretty thick, but while it’s in the oven the chocolate chips can sink a bit. I was short on chocolate chips so I added in some peanut butter chips, which actually tasted really good. You can even add in white chocolate chips, m n m’s, etc.

Borwnies

Pour the batter into the tin, and bake them for about 20-25 minutes. If you’re making a double batch add about 5 minutes to the baking time. The brownies should be set around the edges, and 90% cooked in the center. Kind of like a cheesecake. Take them out and let them cool for about 20 minutes before cutting them, if you can control yourself. They’re delicious just on their own, but some ice cream won’t do any harm!