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Friday, December 21, 2012

Brownie Cupcake Sundaes

We are only days away from Christmas.  It's been really easy to tell how many days are left before the holiday weekend begins because of the following.  Each day this week...

My morning train has been emptier and emptier.  Friday morning promises to give me a three-seater all to myself!

There have been fewer and fewer people in the halls at work.  My company is closed next week for our winter shutdown and some people choose to extend this vacation by taking a few days this week as well.  I'm pretty sure there will be 10% of the people in the building and maybe 1% of them will be doing actual work.

My evening return to the city each night has become more packed with families.  They are all dressed up in their winter best, heading to the city to see the Rockefeller tree, shop at Macy's and view the holiday windows.  Oh yeah, and be loud and noisy on the train.  Shhhhh...

T minus five days - Boyfriend has fled the cold weather to visit his parents in Florida.  This is a good thing.  While we will be spending Christmas apart (I'll be heading to Buffalo this to visit my own parents), I get to use this time to shop and wrap for the guy. 

I finished my holiday shopping last night after work.  My antibiotics have helped me kick the bronchitis that took up residence in my chest.  And Perry's Ice Cream sent me two containers of holiday flavors.  It's time to celebrate!

Actually, the container of ice cream pictured is not the original one that they sent me.  I accidentally ate all of that one.  All by myself.  Don't worry, it took me almost two weeks to eat the whole container.  BF and I had to make our way to the New Jersey Wegmans and buy the last container of peppermint ice cream.

Before I ate all of the ice cream, I had plans to make these little brownie cupcakes.  These dessert treats are really simple and perfect for a complicated holiday dinner.  Make some brownie cupcakes, top them with your favorite mint/peppermint ice cream and add a dallop of whipped topping.  Hello delicious.

Happy Holidays everyone!  I hope that you get to spend some time with the ones you love.

Many thanks to Perry's Ice cream for helping it feel like home, all these miles away from Buffalo.  I've also found that if people know about Perry's Ice cream, they love it.  If you can find it, give it a try!

One Year Ago: Peanut Butter Rice Crispy Bars
Two Years Ago: Asparagus Risotto

Brownie Cupcake Sundaes
(Makes 18-20 cupcakes)

I'm sure your favorite brand of ice cream makes a peppermint flavor this time of year, so if you aren't lucky enough to live in Perry's territory you can use that.  I allowed my brownies to cool and froze them together with the ice cream.  This way they were all set to go for company.  No last minute scooping required.

14 tbsp butter
1/2 cup plus 2 tbsp bittersweet chocolate chips
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
4 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup plus 2 tbsp flour
pinch salt

In a small saucepan, melt together butter and chocolate chips over low heat.  Stir to combine.  Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly.

In a large bowl, beat together sugar, eggs and vanilla until smooth.  Add cooled chocolate mixture and stir until no streaks remain.  Add flour and salt and stir until combined.

Preheat oven to 350 F.  Line 20 muffin cups with paper liners.  Add 1/4 cup brownie batter to the liners.  Bake for 20 minutes.  Remove from the oven and let cool completely on a wire rack.

Add a scoop of ice cream to each brownie and top with a dallop of whipped topping.  Alternatively, you can freeze the brownies, add a scoop of ice cream and freeze the whole thing again.  Then you have treats ready to go when you are!
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