SMiLes by Meg

Caramel Peanut Brownies

“;.////////////////////////////////////p;//” – From Elwynn, who decided to walk across my iPad when I started typing this up.

He did capture how I feel about this week though – I could use another 3 weekends right now. But I think that’s just February for you.

Fortunately, I did get to spend some time making something new – caramel peanut brownies! Meg Fay, one of the other second years at my firm, has a birthday this week. She requested something “chocolate and peanut butter, or chocolate and caramel” and I was able to find something that was chocolate and peanut AND caramel. Plus, brownies are always a hit.

Start by making the brownie base. Whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, salt and baking soda in a medium bowl.

In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter, sugar and brown sugar on medium speed for a minute until creamy.

Add egg and vanilla extract and beat until incorporated.

Add the dry ingredients and beat in until moistened.

Add in ther chocolate and stir to combine.

Spread the batter, which is very thick, into an 8×8 pan lined with parchment paper. Bake at 350°F for 25 to 30 minutes, until the top is dry. Set aside to cool completely.

Next, make the caramel topping. Put the water, sugar and corn syrup in a small saucepan over medium high heat. Simmer until amber in color, about 15 minutes, swirling occasionally.

Add the butter and cream and continue to cook for 5 to 10 minutes, stirring, until temperature reaches 238°F.

Stir in the peanuts and salt, and spread over the top of the brownies.

Allow to cool completely. Use the parchment paper to pull it out of the pan and cut into bars.

The caramel will be a bit runny, but solid enough to put down some parchment paper and stack them in an airtight container.

Enjoy!

Caramel Peanut Brownies

Ingredients:

Brownie Base

  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar, packed
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped

Caramel Peanut Topping

  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup light corn syrup
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • 1 1/2 cups unsalted roasted peanuts
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

Ingredients:

Brownie Base

  1. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa powder, salt and baking soda.
  2. In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter, sugar and dark brown sugar on medium speed until creamy, about 1 minute.
  3. Add egg and vanilla extract and beat until combined.
  4. Add dry ingredients and beat until moistened. Stir in chopped chocolate.
  5. Spread batter into an 8×8 pan lined with parchment paper. Bake at 350°F for 25 to 30 minutes, until top looks dry. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely.

Caramel Peanut Topping

  1. Put the water, sugar and corn syrup in a small saucepan over medium high heat. Allow to simmer about 15 minutes, until amber in color, swirling occasionally.
  2. Stir in the heavy cream and butter and continue cooking 5 to 10 minutes, stirring, until it reaches 238°F.
  3. Remove from heat and stir in peanuts and salt. Spread the topping over the brownie base and allow to cool completely.
  4. Cut into bars.

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