Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Making Lemons into Lemonade

So the last few weeks have been CRAZY!!! I went on an interview, ended up getting the job, had to give my 2 weeks, and then went to VA Beach for a relaxing vacation with my hubby. Needless to say I haven’t had much time to cook.

Anyway a few weeks ago was my nieces birthday party. I made vegan brownies and attempted to make chocolate chip cookies. Let me preface this by saying I made the brownies at about 10pm on Friday and took out the ingredients for the cookies so I could make them at 8am the next morning, BAD idea!

First the brownies: My friend and former co-worker, Andrea, gave me her AWESOME brownie recipe and I love it, but I decided to revamp it because lets face it that’s what I do. You may ask, how to do you revamp a brownie? You make it vegan. How do you make it vegan? By replacing the animal products for vegan products and if your me they are also soy free products, but replace at your will. Oh and vegan baking is awesome because the ingredients you use don’t spoil as fast as animal products do. I say they are my best brownies yet and they are completely guilt free, well in a vegan/moral/eco-friendly sense. Unfortunately, they still have fat and calories. Everyone liked them and they couldn’t tell they were vegan!
Vegan Brownies as adapted from Andrea Drazul’s recipe:

¾ cup Cocoa (I used Ghirardelli, yummmmm)
½ tsp baking soda
2/3 cup of your favorite vegan butter substitute, melted and divided (I used soy free Earth Balance spread)
½ cup boiling water
2 cups sugar
The equivalent of 2 eggs with an eggs substitute (my favorite is ground flaxseed and water, very nutritious, all natural, and delicious. 1 Tbs of flaxseed meal mixed with 3 Tbs of warm water = 1egg)
1 1/3 cups flour
1 tsp salt
2 tsp vanilla
1 cup of semi-sweet chocolate chips (I used 365 organic, which is whole foods brand)

Heat oven to 350. Stir together cocoa and baking soda in a large bowl. To that, stir in 1/3 cup melted butter sub. Add boiling water and stir until mixture thickens. Stir in sugar, egg sub, and remaining 1/3 of butter sub. Mix this until smooth. Then add the flour, vanilla and salt, stir until blended. Then fold in the chocolate chips and pour into a greased 9x13. Bake 30 minutes or until the brownies pull from the pan. You can serve as is or top with your favorite icing. Do not knock them until you try them!

Finally we come to the making lemons into lemonade part. So as I said I prepped my ingredients ahead the night before so they would be room temp for me early in the morning. What I didn’t notice even when preparing the recipe, is that it called for 2 sticks of butter aka 1 cup and I took out 2 cups of butter aka 4 sticks. I’ve been making chocolate chip cookies since I was what 2??? Who knows I may have helped before then. They have been a staple in our family since my mom and dad got married because they are my dads’ absolute favorite cookie! This just goes to show that even if you know a recipe by heart you can still screw it up so follow your directions carefully! Oh and it probably didn’t help that I used my iPod touch to obtain the recipe so I was reading itty bitty tiny writing. Note to self: wear reading glasses while baking! Anyway, after mixing the dough, I tried to make the cookies and they were all running together. I was like WTF, so I tried another pan and the same thing happened. I looked at the oven temp, that was fine, and then I looked the recipe on my iPod again. There it was clear as day, I used twice the amount of butter! What to do now? Make a pie cookie?? I didn’t have quite enough batter for a large one and a small one would have been pointless. Then I looked down and saw my mini muffin tins. PERFECT, I can spoon them into the muffin tins and make little choc chip cups! Well needless to say it worked and everyone loved them! I’m guessing I should email this recipe to Paula Dean, or the Queen of Butter as I like to call her. The moral of my story is that almost every recipe can be fixed. You just have to stop, think, relax and try something new! So the next time you screw something up, come on, we all do, make lemons into lemonade!

Chocolate Chip Cups definitely not vegan
2 ¼ cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
2 cups (4 sticks) butter, softened
¾ cup sugar
¾ cup packed brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 eggs
2 cups chocolate chips (once again I used 365 organic)

Preheat oven to 350. Combine flour, baking soda and salt in small bowl. Beat butter, sugar, brown sugar, and vanilla in a large bowl with your mixer. Beat until creamy. Add eggs, one at a time. Beat well after each egg. The gradually add in your flour mix. Beat until smooth. Then stir in your chips. Spoon into mini-muffin tins. I believe I baked these for about 10-15 minutes, but I was keeping an eye on them not on the time since I’ve never made them before. Take them out cool in the mini-muffin tin and then pop them out and serve.




  1. those chocolate chip cups look awesome! i really wanna try those vegan brownies. been meaning to try baking something again....it's been forever...

  2. Yeah come over sometime and we can bake and blog! I love baking!

  3. Cool
    Thanks for another egg alternative