The Opinionated Foodie: The Love (or Not) of Food and Everything That Goes with It

A Charity Case: Burned Brownies for a Good Cause

Recently, I volunteered to help with a fundraiser at work. My choices were to provide canned drinks, to provide sandwiches, or to make desserts for sack lunches.

I decided to make two desserts. I figured I could swing it.

What is it that they say? “No good deed goes unpunished.”

For sure.

First, I made chocolate-white chocolate-peanut butter chip cookies with walnuts. No problem. Cookies are no big deal. They turned out fine. I bagged them for the sack lunches, and they were done. One dessert down; one to go.

Then, I attempted to make brownies with a caramel cream cheese and pecan stuffing. I had no recipe since I made it up. I just figured brownies with caramel and cream cheese with pecans would be good.

Here is the part where I should have quit while I was ahead.

I took two boxes of regular size brownies and prepared one according to the directions on the box. I baked it for about ten minutes while I prepared the rest.

To make the stuffing for the brownies, I mixed one box of softened cream cheese with a jar of Tastefully Simple caramel sauce that I found in the pantry. Then, I mixed a cup of pecans and a half cup of sugar with two tablespoons of melted butter. I baked the sugared pecans for five minutes to toast the pecans and create a nice sugar glaze. When the pecans had cooled a bit, I mixed them in with the cream cheese. If I could do it over, I would beat in a half cup of sugar into the cream cheese mixture. The cream cheese just never lost its twang.

I spread the caramel cream cheese concoction on the first brownie batch. Then I covered that with the second box of prepared brownie mix.

I baked and baked and baked it at 350 for over thirty minutes. The top never got done, the bottom was who knows how done, and I was getting impatient since I wanted it to cool and cut it ahead of time.

What to do? Crank up the heat, of course.

I decided to broil the brownies for five minutes. Why? I don’t know.

I fired up the broiler and left to find another activity for my five free minutes. With about one minute left on the clock, a peculiar smell hit my nose.

I guess this has happened to everyone. That tell-tale smell of burned food that went a little too long. I jumped up and raced to the oven to find a charred clump of brownie.

I had managed to ruin what had started out okay.

The caramel cream cheese with pecans had been fine.

The brownie mix had been great.

But, I ruined the whole thing. The problem then was that I had committed to provide desserts to the sweetest lady ever who was counting on me to provide desserts for our fundraiser.

The pressure-what’s a girl to do?

Cover those burned bad boys with powdered sugar and send them on, of course.

Next time, I’ll provide the drinks.


The Buttah Experiment-Garlic Butter
July 18, 2011, 1:42 am
Filed under: Food I Make | Tags: , , , , ,


I love Tastefully Simple’s Italian Garlic Bread Seasoning. It makes wonderful garlic toast. However, I would caution you about eating it if you are friends with vampires or if you are the only person in your group eating it. It is gah-lick-e.

That being said, it was worth a try to have some in compound butter form on corn. Luckily, on the day I tried it on fresh corn, I was alone except for my kids, and no vampires (friends or otherwise) were within sight.

Beware of the Garlic Breath

I liked it a lot. The garlic/spicy flavor of the butter complemented the corn well. I can see using this in dishes with corn off the cob in the future. Yum.

Fried Green Tomatoes
June 21, 2011, 2:32 am
Filed under: Food I Make | Tags: , , ,

Fried Green Tomatoes

Tonight, we tried something new. I made burgers in the usual way-one pound of beef with one and a half tablespoons of Montreal seasoning.

They came out beautifully from the grill.

But then, we changed it up by adding a fried green tomato to the top along with the usual mayo and grilled onions.

You wanna talk about good?

I sliced them thick and dredged them in flour, an egg wash, and then an equal mix of plain breadcrumbs and Panko breadcrumbs that I seasoned with Tastefully Simple’s Italian bread seasoning.

I fried them for three minutes on each side and drained them on a paper towel before placing them on top of the burgers.

Wow. I didn’t know I could even make something so good!

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