Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Our Favorite Blondies

Dear Kevin,

I think we should be friends. It’s quite obvious that we both have excellent taste in food, and when it comes right down to it, what better way is there is make a friend than to share a meal? In our case, however, I would recommend sharing dessert. After all, we both have an appreciation for anything chocolate. We both like our desserts warm from the oven – a soft crumb, a moist inside, and a melting scoop of ice cream spreading across the plate. Most importantly, however, we both have the same favorite blondie. It’s true that they were your favorite long before they were mine, but you’ll have to excuse me for spending a few years in the dark. When I saw the post on your wife, Kristen’s blog, and when I saw the photos of the perfect squares flecked with peanuts and oozing chocolate, I didn’t wait long before making them. I assembled the peanut butter and peanuts, the flaked coconut and semisweet chocolate, and I haven’t turned back since. I tasted a tiny square right out of the oven. Yum! I came back for seconds a bit later, and I came back for thirds and fourths and maybe even fifths. (We can keep the exact number to ourselves.) Somewhere in the middle of tasting and savoring and licking the last drop of chocolate off my fork (Yes, I eat blondies with a fork. I hope that’s okay), I realized they were my favorite blondies: that and my favorite bar cookie and maybe even my favorite dessert.

I’m writing this note to say thank you – thank you for having such good taste and thank you for inspiring the post that gave me my favorite blondie. I don’t think I can repay the favor, but if you’d like to be friends, I’ll gladly bake a batch of these blondies. Maybe, if I’m feeling generous, I’ll even let you have more than one.

Happy eating,


The recipe for Kevin and my favorite blondies is from The Kitchen Sink Recipes blog and can be found here. It is also below with a few of my notes added in.

Peanut Butter-Chocolate Chunk Blondies

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (using half whole wheat pastry flour and half all-purpose flour also works)

1 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened

1/2 cup all-natural peanut butter

1 1/4 cups firmly packed light brown sugar

2 large eggs

1 teaspoons vanilla

1 cup bittersweet or semi-sweet chocolate, coarsely chopped

1/2 cup unsalted peanuts, finely chopped (using other nuts works as well)

1/2 cup flaked coconut

Preheat the oven to 350. Butter and flour a 9-inch square pan. If you don’t have a 9-in square pan, you can use something that’s approximately the same size. Just be warned that the cooking time will vary accordingly. The blondies are best thick, so I would recommend an 8-in square pan above a 9x13in if you are going to substitute.

In a medium bowl, whisk or sift together the flour, baking powder, cinnamon and salt. Set aside.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, mix the butter and peanut butter until fluffy. Make sure that you allow the butter to sit at room temperature for at least 45 minutes ahead of time so that it softens. Add the sugar and mix until combined. Add the eggs and vanilla and mix until combined. With the mixer running on low speed, slowly add the dry ingredients, mixing until just combined.

Using a spatula or wooden spoon, fold in the chocolate, peanuts and coconut. Be sure to chop the peanuts very finely. The texture is much better that way. Bake the blondies in the center of the pre-heated oven for 30 minutes, or until the blondies have just begun to brown around the edges.

Allow the blondies to cool completely in the pan before cutting. If like me, you’re too impatient to wait, you can cut a piece earlier. Just expect the edges to be rather messy.

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