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Mayan Chocolate Brownies

Mayan Chocolate BrowniesI really felt like baking yesterday and my heart was feeling chocolate. So a natural inclination was brownies. But as I was searching around, I found some recipes for spicy chocolate brownies. And so my Mayan Chocolate Brownies were born. Despite taking several hours due to a prolonged propane tank situation, they were baked and turned out delicious. The recipe I used was based largely on one in the Whole Foods iPad app, but I modified it a little bit. I added more “spicy” because I wanted the flavor to really push through the sweet brownie, and I loved that this recipe kept them from being too sweet. It really is not that spicy, but if you are nervous you could use less cayenne. I think next time I might try it with some of the local chili powder too.

What You Need:

This is the good stuff

This is the good stuff

2.5 ounces unsweetened chocolate (the Grenadian Chocolate company 100% cocoa bar worked marvelously!)
1/2 cup unsalted butter
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1/4 + 1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp. baking powder
2/3 cup flour
1/4 tsp. fine sea salt
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla extract

Preheat your oven to 350 and prepare an 8 inch pan by lining it with aluminum foil leaving enough to hang over two of the edges. This was different, but it made getting the brownies out super easy and no washing the pan! Butter the foil.

Melt the chocolate (chopped into pieces) and butter in a small saucepan on low until almost all of the chocolate pieces are melted. Remove from heat, stir until rest of chocolate melts, and allow to cool.

Whisk together flour, spices, baking powder, and salt. Pour chocolate mixture into a medium bowl and stir in sugar and eggs and vanilla. Add flour mixture and stir just until smooth. Pour into a prepared pan and bake until top is dry and a tester comes out without any raw dough, about 25-30 minutes. My oven is hot and I baked them about 25 minutes – I really wanted to preserve the moist centers and I think they came out perfect.

BeforeAfter

Allow to cool then remove from pan via the foil and then you can slice them up and a cutting board. I made the brownies into sundaes with some vanilla ice cream for a delicious summer treat!

Oh, and this also marks the first post where I am trying to stop being lazy and use our nice camera. Now naturally I tried to take most of these pictures at night and we still don’t have the best kitchen lighting, but I have hopes that they might improve. We will see.

Enjoy!

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5-minute Chocolate Cake

Seriously, this recipe is bomb! And a major go-to for emergency chocolate cravings, stressed out medical students, moody girl time, and treating hubby’s belly. A friend of mine found this and posted it on a Facebook group for all of us students. I must say that even though I do, in fact, have an oven – this is so easy to make. Plus, I don’t have a mixer or a huge supply of baking dishes here but I do have coffee mugs. We have played around with the recipe a little and we definitely recommend adding a chocolate bar in if you don’t have chocolate chips (so far M&Ms, snickers, and Grenadian Chocolate Bars have all been fine contestants). I would also say feel free to add a little extra liquid, I found that mine came out a little dry but one I added a splash extra milk – it was pure delight. Last tip, don’t overcook! Nothing like a dry, hard cake. But by the second try I had a delicious, fudgey, warm chocolate cake right out of the microwave – literally taking only 5 minutes. Check out how to make it here, or watch the video below. Enjoy!

 

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Chocolate Oatmeal No-Bake Cookies

So, living in Grenada, the one thing I notice is the lack of sweets. I mean, I need myself some good desserts close by. The sweets that are available are really expensive and mostly imported, which is odd when Grenada has its own chocolate factory. So I turn to my favorite easy-to-make cookie recipe to fill in the gaps. They are so easy to make and delicious. And since it is so hot here, not only do I not need to turn on my oven (or master the complication of non-temperature regulated baking – more on that later) but I can pop these guys in the freezer and they are a cool delicious treat.

What you need:

1 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 cup milk
1/4 cup butter
1/2 cup peanut butter (I recommend getting the natural stuff because it is way better for you -remember I am a Dr.-to-be. Peanut butter is expensive in Grenada, but I think it is worth it. Nevertheless, any creamy peanut butter will do.)
1 teaspoons vanilla (vanilla extract here is to die for)
3 ¬†tablespoons cocoa powder (HIGHLY recommend getting the stuff from the Grenadian Chocolate Factory because it blows Hershey’s out of the water. You can buy it at the regular grocery store)
3 cups Old Fashioned Oatmeal

In a saucepan combine everything except the vanilla over a low-medium heat until all melted. Remove from the heat and stir in vanilla and let cool for a couple minutes. Add oatmeal. Drop spoonfuls onto a cookie sheet (or if you are like me and lack a baking sheet, a plate will do fine) covered in waxed paper and then allow to cool until hard. If you are impatient like my husband, placing them in the fridge or freezer will expedite the process. Also, we can put our plug in for storing the cookies in the freezer to eat as a cold, delicious treat.

Enjoy!