Happy October!

October 8, 2020

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                                                             Enjoying an autumn walk.
(Okay, so to be honest, I actually took this selfie in late September.  :o))
.

Happy October!

I bring you today’s blog post from the vantage point of my back deck, soaking up the splendor of this glorious autumn afternoon. I love fall, don’t you?  Why not pour yourself
a cup of tea/coffee (I love me some Barry’s Irish tea!), find yourself a cozy spot, and spend the next few minutes “chatting” with me about some of the fun stuff that makes autumn so awesome? 

From my back deck, I enjoy the glorious autumn afternoon.
My special It’s a Small World Cup is filled with my favorite
Barry’s Irish Tea. 😮

Spiderweb Brownies!!!!

I know, I know….if you regularly read my blog, you know that I have been in brownie mode, (…not ala mode, hee hee) as of late.  Having tried Oprah’s favorite brownie in my last post, and Katharine Hepburn’s brownie recipe in the post before that, I came to the conclusion that I still prefer the Ghirardelli mix variety (shown below).

I am a fan of brownies made from this Ghirardelli mix .

 But I had one more brownie recipe in my culinary bag of tricks. I just had to give this recipe a try for Halloween; that being the Spiderweb Brownie. (I found this recipe on Pinterest.  You can see the original recipe, here.) Let me tell you, this brownie is a good one, with, or without the cream cheese topping! This recipe is a keeper!

This recipe is a keeper!

 I felt a bit of a failure, though, in my presentation. Nailed it?  NOT!  My brownie’s cream cheese topping resembled a toxic spill more than a spiderweb, but fortunately that did not affect how deliciously rich and chocolatey it tasted.

A spiderweb?  Not so much. :o)

Most of the ingredients for the recipe are items that I usually have around, which makes this recipe a dangerous temptation when the craving for chocolate hits.  :o)

The ingredients mix up into a thick batter, and would be good as just brownies.  But the addition of the cream cheese top (the spider web) adds an additional bit of yumminess to this already delicious creation.

The batter is quite thick.

The Recipe

Spiderweb Brownies 

Ingredients

1 1/2 cups sugar

3/4 cup  flour

3/4 cup cocoa powder

3/4 cup ( 1 1/2 sticks) (salted) butter

3 large eggs, lightly beaten

1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
(I used Ghirardelli )

3 ounces cream cheese, softened
(I used the light variety)

1/4 cup  sugar

2 tablespoons milk

Directions

Preheat the oven to 325°F.
Grease an 8″ round cake pan.
Spread a little sugar on the bottom of the pan.

Melt 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) butter.
Allow to cool, setting aside.

In a large mixing bowl whisk together
1 1/2 cups sugar, 3/4 cup all-purpose flour, 3/4 cup cocoa powder,
and 3/4 teaspoon salt.
Mix well.

Whisk in 3 eggs into the cooled melted butter until well blended.
Pour the liquid ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir, by hand,
just until combined.
The batter will be thick.

Gently fold in 1/2 cup chocolate chips.
Spread batter into the prepared pan.
Set aside.

Prepare the cream cheese mixture-
combine 3 ounces of softened cream cheese with 1/4 cup sugar and
2 tablespoons milk in a mixing bowl.
Using the whisk attachment, whip the cream cheese mixture until smooth and soft. (I used my hand blender with whisk attachment.)

Cut a small hole into the bottom corner of a quart sized plastic baggie, or use a decorator bag., and  scoop the cream cheese mixture into the bag. I used a small piping tip, but the hole in the corner of the bag should work well too. Pipe thin circles from the middle to the outside of the brownie batter.

Next, pipe thin lines from the middle of the pan out to the edge and across the circles, gently dragging the tip of the bag through the cream cheese circles as you go. Make these lines all the way around the pan.

Bake at 325°F for 45-50 minutes, or until a toothpick stuck into the center comes out with dry crumbs on it.
Remove from the oven and let cool in pan for about 30 minutes.
Before removing from the pan, run a butter knife around the edge, gently lifting as you go to loosen from the bottom of the pan as well.
Gently turn out onto a parchment lined surface and invert onto a cooling rack so the spiderweb is facing up.
Allow to cool completely.
Enjoy!

Cooking with Gammy

Acorns (or D0ugh NUTS)

When “studying” squirrels on Gammy Day, these cute little “acorns” were the perfect accompanying snack to create!

Ingredients

Donut holes
(I used Entenmann’s Glazed Donut Pop’ems.)

Chocolate frosting
(I used Duncan Hines dark chocolate in the plastic tub.)

Mini chocolate chips

Stick pretzels-broken into thirds

Directions

Dip the top of the donut hole in chocolate frosting, or frost with a knife.

Dip/roll frosted end into the mini chocolate chips to coat.

Push in the 1/3 pretzel stick into the middle of the chocolate chip end, for a stem.

                                            2-3 Ingredient Pumpkin Muffins

Pumpkin Muffins were another of my grandchildren’s kid-approved recipes.
(A friend of mine had suggested these, an old Weight Watcher recipe.)
Upon discussing these with my four grand girls, they excitedly shared that they had
recently enjoyed pumpkin muffins with chocolate chips from a local bakery.
So…this 2-ingredient recipe, became the 3-ingredient recipe that you see below.  :o)

Ingredients

1 Spice cake mix (about 15-18 ounces), any brand

1 small (15 ounce) can pumpkin

1/2-1 cup, or more, chocolate chips (optional)
( I use Ghirardelli dark chocolate)

Directions

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Line a mini muffin pan with mini cupcake liners.
Spray with cooking spray.

Mix together the cake mix and the pumpkin with a spoon.
Stir in chocolate chips, if desired.
(We also placed one chocolate chip on top of each muffin prior to baking.)

Bake about 8 minutes, until an inserted toothpick in the center comes out clean.

Place muffins on wire rack to cool.

Owl Cookie Faces

The “study” of owls with my preschool granddaughters was made complete with the addition of these cute little owl faces that they created.  :o)

3 Chips Ahoy! cookies 
4 Oreo cookies
Canned frosting (I used Duncan Hines)
2 m&m’s
1 candy corn

Directions

Place 3 Chip Ahoy! cookies on a plate with two on top and one underneath,
placing the cookies top-down. (Refer to photos above.)
(Allowing the smooth flat part of the cookie, face up, for frosting.)

Frost all three cookies on the smooth flat side.

Twist apart two Oreos.  Using the half of the cookie with the cream, place
the Oreos onto two the frosted Chip Ahoy! cookies.
(Eat the remaining half of the Oreos. :o))

Place one m&m/eye in the center of the cream of each Oreo.

Place the candy corn/beak, point down, in the center of the bottom frosted cookie.

Made Me Smile :o)
Sharing things that put a smile on my face. :o)

Autumn Colors

My friend, Caralee, snapped this beautiful fall photo in her native Minnesota.
Thank you, Caralee, for allowing me to share it!

Happy Mail 

I received this nice surprise, in the form of this cute Murder She Wrote postcard, in the mail this week, from my British “pen pal”. :o). Jenny is currently working on a cookbook based on the classic TV show, Murder She Wrote.
You can read about the talented Ms. Jenny here and here.

In My Neighborhood

What fun it is to see my neighborhood all decked out for Halloween! :o)
In keeping with the Halloween theme, there are even some very old and very real tombstones. 

Frankenstein guards my neighbor’s front door.

A nod to Disney’s A Nightmare Before Christmas graces this neighbor’s lawn.

A mummy keeps watch over the neighborhood from this window.

Six very old tombstones go mostly unnoticed in my neighborhood.

                      I have been known to wave at “Ruth” as I pass by on my daily walk.  :o)

Mickey Mouse Jack-o-Lanterns
I love pulling out my Mickey Mouse jack-o-lantern trio each October!
They really do make me smile!  :o)

Related Posts
Halloween/October and Brownie Recipes from Previous Posts

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Halloween, Not-too Scary, Movie Watching FunOctober 2019, here.

Trick or Treat!, October 2018, here.

October!, October 2018, here.

Autumn in October: Young Frankenstein, a Not-So-Scary Halloween, and Pumpkin Cake…, October 2016, here.

A Halloween Movie/TV Show, October 2016, here.

Dracula!, October 2015, here.

Time to Make Some Carmel Corn!, October 2015, here.

Happy-Not-So-Very-Scary-Halloween, October 2013, here.

Fat Witch Brownies

Fat Witch Brownies, September 2020, here.
The recipe for Oprah’s pick for her favorite brownie is here, courtesy of this brownie-filled New York bakery.

Katharine Hepburn’s Brownies

Katharine Hepburn’s (Movie Star)BrowniesAugust 2020, here.
A recipe from the star herself.  These brownies are chocolate deliciousness.

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Cape Cod Brownies

Lobsters and Clam Chowder and Birthday Cakes, Oh My!, May 2019, here.
This recipe is similar to the Katharine Hepburn recipe (above),
except Hepburn’s uses unsalted butter and 1/2 cup cocoa,
instead of the regular butter and 2 squares of unsweetened chocolate
that are called for in this Cape Cod variety.

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Brownie Hearts

Love and Chocolate, February 2018, here.
A heart-shaped cookie cutter help turn these brownies into a tasty Valentine treat.

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Ghirardelli Brownies with Aunt Liz’s Glossy Chocolate Frosting

Chicken and Dumplings & Ma and Pa Kettle, September 2014, here.This post includes my aunt’s recipe for the perfect brownie frosting.

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May your days be blessed, and your taste buds happy!
Thank you for reading!

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I’m Annette Stuff

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Look for my next post on, or around,
November 2, 2020.

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I giggled when I stumbled upon this nod to Star Trek on a recent walk.  :O)

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9 Responses to Happy October!

  1. Marjorie Mattson says:

    Good job.

    Like

  2. Jennifer Sharpe says:

    Not too many brownies Annette they are deadly!!

    Yes, I think where ever you are in the world Autumn is the best time of year.
    ….keep writing Annette.

    Jenny.

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

    Like

  3. Yay penpal! So pleased that the card got to you OK! I’m impressed with all your brownie making, I’ve made the Katharine Hepburn Brownies a couple of times but they didn’t turn out great for me. But, to be honest, I am no good at any type of sweet baking – must try harder! Lots of love to you from a sunny autumn day in London, UK. Jxxx

    Like

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