Ready, Set Weekend with Simply Beautiful Eating
When Ali Borowick Zmishlany, CEO and Co-Founder of Fatty Sundays asked me if I would like to try their pretzels, do you think I would say NO?
Uh....A BIG FATTY SUNDAY YES PLEASE! I was really excited to use their product in a custom designed recipe for Halloween. You can't go wrong with anything that has to do with Fatty Sundays pretzels. The sweet and salty mix is just heaven on a stick.
So let's talk about FedEx for a minute here. That's the route these pretzels were taking from NYC to T.O. I received a call from them early last week asking me to sign a "power of attorney release letter" to clear Canada Customs. Apparently, that's where these "pretzel immigrants" were being held. That's pretty darn official right? Wait. I'm not finished yet. I received no less than 16 emails from them about this package. I mean. They are pretzels! After signing, re-signing, scanning, faxing, emailing, sending and finally getting a confirmation that they received all the paperwork Fatty Sundays was cleared to pass through customs and make their way to ME.
I just want you know, it's a huge responsibility to have have Power of Attorney for a bunch of pretzels. Especially ones that taste like these.
A few days later I arrived home after work to find a Fedex Package dumped at my front door and guess what? I think those customs guys took a peek inside to make sure that these really were PRETZELS! I just hope that they didn't taste test any.
Once I opened the package, I spread out the contents of the pretzel goods. There were so many awesome flavours to work with I decided to incorporate them ALL into one outta control brownie recipe.
With the addition of pure pumpkin purée into my standard chocolate brownie recipe, the word FALL and HALLOWEEN made sense now. The smell that was wafting from my kitchen while these were baking was intoxicating. Rich dark chocolate laced with pumpkin and spices all atop of a pretzel crust.
OH MA GAWD! So dense, so delish.
And speaking of dense.
I checked my brownies at the recommended baking time and found that they were a bit underdone. Translation? The old stick the toothpick in the centre trick came out WET. So, I set my oven timer for an extra 5 minutes OR I THOUGHT I DID.
When I went back to check on them I noticed that they were in for an extra 10 minutes! NOTSOGOOD.
Basically I dried them out a bit, but to be honest they were still amazing.
And check out my new little ghost friend. Isn't he cute? I found him at Marshalls and he was cracked (something we have in common). The folks there discounted the little fellow for me and next thing I knew, he was supervising my photo shoot and looking out for pretzel crumbs.
One more thing.....I want to thank my hubby Steve for lending me his VERY spooky hunting knife. I have no idea what he hunts but it's kinda Friday the 13th-ish, don't ya think?
Dark Chocolate Pumpkin Brownies with Pretzel Crust
For the Pretzel Crust
1/2 cup all-purpose flour 1 cup crushed pretzels, I used Fatty Sunday's Toffee Chocolate Bites 1/2 cup packed brown sugar 1/4 teaspoon baking soda 1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
For the Brownies
6 oz dark or semi- sweet chocolate, coarsely chopped (I used Ghirardelli, 72% dark chocolate) 3/4 cup unsalted butter 1/4 cup milk or water 1/4 cup pure pumpkin puree, (do not use pumpkin pie filling - get the real stuff) 1 cup white sugar 3/4 cup packed brown sugar 2 eggs 1 teaspoon vanilla 1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour 1/8 teaspoon salt 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1/8 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice Additional Garnish - chopped pretzels - I used Fatty Sunday's Salted Toffee & Chocolate & Orange and Black Halloween Inspired Pretzels.
For the Pretzel Crust layer. Preheat oven to 350F. Line a 9 x 13 pan with parchment paper. Mix the dry crust ingredients together and add the melted butter. Mix well. Pour crust ingredients into your pan and pat down evenly with your hands. Bake for 10 minutes while you are preparing your brownie mixture. In a medium saucepan, combine the chopped chocolate, butter, and the milk or water; cook and stir over low heat until chocolate is melted. Transfer to a good size bowl or a stand mixer.
Add both the white sugar and brown sugar to chocolate mixture; beat (with paddle attachment or use a hand mixer) on low to medium speed until combined. Add eggs, pumpkin puree and vanilla; beat on medium speed for 2 minutes. Add flour, salt, cinnamon and pumpkin pie spice. Beat on low speed just until combined. Spread batter in prepared pan. Sprinkle with additional chopped pretzels.
Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near center comes out clean. (make sure your timer is correct and don’t get distracted like I do) Cool in pan on a baking rack. Slice and watch them disappear like MAGIC! Makes 12 large or 24 small brownies.