Saturday, May 2, 2009

Mmmmm, Mint

Yesterday was 'sundae day' for the 3rd graders at Lincoln's school. Try explaining that to the 3 year old who was concerned that we were not dressing properly for Sunday and really, how could it be Sunday if Lincoln was at school and Daddy was at work? Trust me, it was an all morning discussion. Thankfully, by bribing her with a sundae to come seemed to do the trick.

When the sign-up came home last week asking for volunteers to take toppings Lincoln begged me to sign up to take a pan of brownies...his FAVORITE mint brownies. "Oh, and by the way", he says, "I've already told all of my friends about them." That's how I got tricked into making two (yes, TWO) pans of mint brownies yesterday.

You see, I'm married to a chocoholic, seriously a complete addict. He's not a social chocolate eater. If there is anything in the house chocolate he'll stake claim, whether it's his or not.

So....when Thursday came around I hesitated making brownies that would lay around for approximately 24 hours before being needed at Lincoln's school. They could easily be claimed by Mr. Chocolate himself and I'd be up a creek. (actually, the kids at Lincoln's school who were anticipating the minty goodness would be...) I decided I'd say nothing about my impending brownie deadline and make them fresh Friday morning. That's when the 3 year old decided to bring up the sundae/Sunday confusion at the dinner table. Nice, huh?

So, Friday morning rolls around. I start retrieving ingredients for the brownies x2. Realizing I don't have enough butter...(they're calorie free, I promise) I make a 'quick' run to the store with 3 children 3 and under. (see why quick was in '-'? Yeah) I arrive home and bake the brownies, meanwhile realizing that I didn't pick up another bag of powdered sugar for the frosting...(seriously fat free brownies, what a concept!)

Amazingly I have three kids down for early naps, in accordance with the self-imposed and majorly adjusted schedule for this day. So I make an executive decision that the frosting can wait until said children wake up from the naps that I don't think they ever fell asleep for (see further down).

Children decide that lying in bed for an hour but not sleeping qualifies for a nap on this infamous day, therefore I pack up the same 3 children 3 and under and head back to the same store hoping desperately to find a checker who did not see us earlier in the day. Thankfully it's only about 95° at this point in the day and the children are feeling only mildly irritated/sleepy/hungry, etc.

Glance at the clock in the car and realize I have 30 minutes to frost 2 pans of brownies, pack up 3 children and get to school, while still trying to look presentable myself (so as not to embarass the 9 year old, myself or the other mothers...) and these calorie free/fat free brownies have two layers of frosting. Crap!

Manage to get home, get brownies frosted, refrigerated, re-frosted, three children dressed and groomed, car packed, food/snacks packed for children and arrive at the school on time and with makeup applied. Amazing, I know, I take all sorts of congratulations on that one.

About the time that the first class of students started filing in the door my 3 children 3 and under decide that it would be the perfect time for a complete meltdown. Not just a hissy fit here and there...nope. A. Complete. Meltdown. It was almost comical. Actually it was completely hilarious. Imagine with me if you will, two children strapped into a stroller, wildly flailing arms because they want ice cream/food/attention/all of the above, a 3 year old begging for ice cream and climbing on the benches, and a mother looking apologetically at the other mothers who don't have litters of children. Two of these other mothers know me well, we see each other about 3 times a week at soccer functions. They know the situation well because this really isn't the first time. In fact they know the situation well enough to know not to attempt to help the tear covered infants freaking out in the stroller, because it will only make it worse. Yep, WORSE! However, the other mothers don't know this and therefore the situation ended with Lincoln feeding Savannah a bowl of ice cream and I was hiding in a far corner of the cafeteria just waiting for the moment I could leave. Thankfully Lincoln's teacher is a saint and released him a few minutes early so we could take our caravan and leave.  As I was leaving I reminded the teacher and the other mothers that this was exactly the reason I didn't volunteer for anything.  The help may be needed, but seriously - How desperate were they really?

By the way, the brownies were a big hit, and all kids who were pre-warned of their greatness agreed, whole-heartedly. So did my husband when he got home and saw a pan in the fridge, completely untouched.

So, when making these brownies, which I swear are the world's best, please keep a picture of me in your mind. If it helps, remember the 3 chaotic children around me too...

Yes, I've posted this recipe before, but it's so good and so good for you, you must try it again!


10 Tbsp. butter
6 Tbsp. cocoa
2 c. sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
4 eggs
1 1/2 c. flour
1/2 tsp. salt

Mint Filling
1/2 c. butter (very soft)
2 c. powdered sugar
1 Tbsp. milk
1 tsp. peppermint extract
1-2 drops green food coloring
(Beat together and spread on cooled brownies)

Chocolate Topping
1/2 c. butter
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
(Heat for 1 minute in microwave. Stir and pour over mint filling, coating evenly)

1. Melt butter and cocoa in microwave. Beat in sugar and vanilla. Add eggs one at a time. Add flour and salt; mix. Bake in 9x13" pan (grease bottom) at 350° for 25 minutes. When cool frost with mint filling. Then put in freezer for 10 to 20 minutes to harden frosting. Frost with chocolate topping.

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