I have been feeling terribly apathetic about cooking the last few weeks…too tired from life, I suppose. The real nail in my coffin of lackluster culinary exploration was when I made butternut squash zig-zags from Trader Joe’s. WTF?! They looked like french fries. It felt full of possibility. But they just tasted like ass. ASS. I think it was the french fry appearance that really sent me down the road of despair. It was all wrong. All of it.
Here’s the thing. I ordinarily love to cook and try new things, but right now I hate it. I want a personal chef. My husband went fishing and I was in survival mode last week. He came back, and now I’m just really freaking tired. Before that, there was school open houses and our family is in the midst of birthday season–pretty much our entire family (minus the twins) have birthdays in August and early September. I’m all out of celebration. Those zig-zags were symbolic of my mental state–tired, bland, limp and passionless.
As we all fake smiled and choked down our lifeless squash, I declared dessert would be my big comeback. “Yes, I shall make something epic,” I said. “E-P-I-C.”
My best friend, Nicole, was over for dinner that night, and like a true best friend, she encouraged me to find some passion again. “Let’s rock this, Dawg,” she encouragingly said. We got on the Pinterest for some inspiration. We both felt instantly inadequate as we scrolled through desserts called, “Sex in a Pan,” and “Ganache with Raspberry Liquor over Unicorn Horns.” I mean…shit. Nothing to make you feel more inadequate than moms pinning crap like that. They are probably making unicorn horn in their clean house while their kids gingerly comb each others hair. “I don’t even understand how the F to use Pinterest,” I said. “Screw this. I’m just making my brownies.”
“No,” Nicole insisted. “This is redemption. You need to create a new recipe and just name it something sexy. It will make you feel sexy again.” While my brownies are tasty and healthy, and leave me quite satisfied…she was right, I needed more tonight. Tonight was about new. I needed to prove to myself that I could still be sexy in the kitchen. Yes, I needed comfortable sexiness. CARAMEL SAUCE atop the tried and true brownies! Yaaaassss. It would be caramel sauce.
I’m not going to lie, this recipe is a bit of a pain to make. You have to heat it up, and cool it down multiple times. Nicole pointed out that it was only natural to name it something sexy, because it took some real effort to get it to its climax. You gotta heat it up, and cool it down…only to heat it up again. We laughed harder than I have in a long time. I’m talking tears down the face. So here you go…you have to try these Seductive Salted Caramel Dark Chocolate Brownies.
1 jar almond butter
1 cup honey or maple syrup
1 tbsp vanilla
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp baking powder
1 cup chocolate chips
Mix it all together. Bake in oiled 9×13 pan at 325 for 35 to 45 min.
1/2 cup maple sugar
1/4 cup coconut sugar
1/2 cup full-fat coconut milk
4 TBSP butter
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp sea salt
- Melt butter in a saucepan over low heat. Add maple sugar, coconut sugar, and coconut milk. Whisk until sugar has dissolved. Then add vanilla extract and salt.
- Turn heat up to medium and bring to a boil. Let boil for 1 minute and 30 seconds. No joke. Set a timer. Take off heat and whisk mixture until it becomes liquid again. Repeat this process 3 more times (a total of 4).
- Cool in refrigerator to thicken a bit more.
- When you have the desired consistency, spread caramel sauce over your brownies.
- Top with dark chocolate shavings