We were lucky last week and had a visit from Bigg Sis and her crew. They were headed north, so we crammed as much fun and visiting as we could into 36 hours and it was absolutely splendid! So fun to be together, to cook together, and to celebrate our mother’s birthday together. We all met at a lake nearby for a day of fun in the mostly sun.
The question of celebrating a birthday in a state park presents a quandary for the cook. Mom is not a huge dessert fan, truth be told, and the tippiness of a cake while carting around beach gear and picnic lunches, towels and goggles for two developing swimmers was a little more than I could imagine carrying off well. So I turned to the natural picnic choice for dessert (at least for my family), brownies.
I remembered a recipe from my pal Sarah, a brownie recipe that delighted my crew and made my tummy happy, happy, happy. I knew it wouldn’t do for the gluten free members of our extended family, though, so it came time to tweak and do the usual “what I’ve actually got in my pantry” tango with the recipe. And here’s the final fabulous results. We liked them so well we’ve made a second batch today.
Super Chocolate Pumpkin Brownies (GF,V) adapted from Sarah’s awesome Sweet Potato Fudgy Brownies
- 1/4 c coconut oil, melted
- 2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa
- 1 c rolled oats, blitzed in food processor or blender until flour-like
- 1/4 t baking powder
- 1/4 t salt
- 3/4 c coconut sugar (or more if you are used to sweeter treats)
- 2/3 c canned pumpkin (Sarah used sweet potato puree and it’s stellar – I just wanted to try with what I had)
- 1 flax egg (1 Tbs flax meal with 3 T water) or whatever kind of egg works for your tribe
- 1 1/2 t vanilla
- a couple of handfuls of pecans and chocolate chips (because really, shouldn’t you?)
Set oven to 350. Oil a square pan. Combine coconut oil and cocoa in large bowl. If you live where I live, you needn’t melt the coconut oil. Northerly climes or those in winter, melt first. Stir until smooth. Combine dry ingredients (except sugar) in small bowl. In yet another bowl, combine the sugar, pumpkin, flax egg, and vanilla and whisk until the sugar is not so granular. Add chocolate/oil combo. Stir to combine. Add dry ingredients. Stir to combine. Add nuts/chips/whatever floats your brownie boat. Give one last stir and transfer (you will not be pouring) into waiting pan.
Bake for 25 minutes (or so), until the top is dry, maybe even has a crack or two and it feels firm to the touch. If you like em drier, leave em in longer. Let cool in the pan for a bit, sneak some crispy edges while nobody’s looking. Delish. Super chocolate. Super yum.