I think it was sometime back in the summer that I went on this campaign against sugar. I had high hopes of reshaping my palette to enjoy the organic delights supplied by Mother Nature, basically fruit and raw honey with the occasional indulgence in dark chocolate. Well, that was 2 months ago.
I’ve slowly veered from that path, shall we say. Don’t get me wrong, I still think it’s a worthwhile goal to aim for, but I don’t feel the urgency I once did. Right now, after a day of homeschooling, grocery shopping, laundry, vacuuming, and countless diaper changes, the last thing on my mind is denying myself the pleasure of a chocolate bar or a brownie should I want one.
I guess you could chalk it up to a lack of self-control, but I wanna be kind to myself, so I say that it’s my one well-earned indulgence. I might have to revisit this concept if my pants start feeling snug, but for now, it works.
So if, by some chance, you are looking for a sweet escape today or, more innocently, just a fun little treat to serve at a game night with some friends, here’s a wonderful and very easy dessert that gets me all kinds of fabulous compliments every time I serve it. (Unfortunately, Martha Stewart really deserves all the credit since it’s her recipe, but in her stead, I will happily receive the accolades.)
Rocky Road Brownies
1 stick butter, cut into pieces
1, 12 oz. bag chocolate chips, divided
½ c. granulated sugar
½ c. brown sugar
½ tsp. salt
2 large eggs
¾ c. flour
1 c. mini marshmallows
½ c. chopped nuts (I prefer pecans.)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line an 8-inch square baking pan with parchment paper, leaving some overhang so you can lift the brownies out of the pan when they’re done. In a saucepan over low heat, melt the butter and 1 cup of chocolate chips. Remove from heat and add sugars and salt, then eggs, and finally flour, stirring just until combined. Spread batter evenly in prepared pan. Bake for about 35 to 40 minutes.
Remove from oven and sprinkle remaining chocolate chips, marshmallows, and nuts over top. Place back in the oven and bake until chocolate is shiny and marshmallows are puffed, about 5 minutes. Cool completely in pan. Using paper overhang, lift cake out and cut into bars.
I hate to hide behind any false assumptions so let me make it clear right here and now--in the past I have used this concept with a boxed brownie mix. No, I'm not proud of it, but it worked beautifully nonetheless. I followed the directions on the box, then just added the toppings to take the end result up a few notches. No one ever knew the difference...except me. Yes, I felt guilty because I'm such a "from scratch" kind of girl. But we all have our dark hours. I guess that was one of mine.