Brownie Brittle Chocolates

Crunchy and chewy brownie brittle crumbs covered in decadent chocolate. Sound good to you? If so, read on

I came up with this recipe because I was inspired by some chocolate that a good friend gave to me as part of my Christmas gift. The flavor was dark chocolate brownies and it was good but not what I was expecting. I decided to make a version of what I expected to taste!

The initial step in the recipe is making the brownie brittle. I came up with that part knowing that fewer eggs and more butter makes a crispy brownie, knowledge I came by after butchering a batch of brownies this summer. The first batch of brittle I made I used oil, no eggs, and not enough flour and boy, it did not work. It was oily, crisp, and just no bueno. I attempted again using butter, one egg, and more flour and it was a success! The recipe takes some time and several steps but it is worth it!

Since it is mid January, we have to start thinking about Valentine’s Day! These chocolates are a unique and homemade Valentines Day gift for a loved one who LOVES chocolate.

browni brittle

I decided to make some with white chocolate because I was hoping it would taste like the Hershey’s Cookies and Cream bars. Those chocolate bars were always a guilty pleasure of mine when I was a kid. When I would be allowed to pick out a piece of candy I would often buy a Hershey’s Cookies and Cream bar, or a Tootsie Roll Log. Why did I like these off beat candies so much? I don’t know, but it may have stemmed from being the youngest child and knowing my siblings wouldn’t want any of them and hence, wouldn’t steal any.

By the way, making these with white chocolate DOES taste a lot like the Hershey’s Cookies and Cream bars!

Either way, here is the recipe for these Brownie Brittle Chocolates, the Brownie Brittle itself is crunchy and chocolatey, and it can be made on its own.

brownie brittle
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Brownie Brittle Chocolates
A unique, homemade Valentines gift!
Ingredients
  • 3/4 C brownie brittle crumbs (recipe follows)
  • 8 ounces semisweet or white chocolate
Instructions
1. Melt chocolate in a double boiler over low heat or use the microwave method of microwaving in 30-second intervals until melted. 2. Prepare ice cube tray or other mold with a light coat of cooking spray. If making bark, prepare a piece of wax paper. 3. Stir brownie brittle crumbs into melted chocolate and pour into mold. Or if making bark, pour onto wax paper and spread out to desired thickness. 4. Let cool at room temperature, fridge, or freezer until hardened. I cooled mine at room temperature but stuck them in the freezer for a few minutes to make them release easier.
Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 9 large chocolates (from an ice cube tray)
chocolates
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Brownie Brittle Crumbs
Crunchy homemade brownie brittle, perfect for making Brownie Brittle Chocolates, a great topping for ice cream, or ice cream!
Ingredients
  • 1/2 C salted butter, melted
  • 1 C granulated sugar
  • 3/4 C all purpose flour
  • 1/3 C cocoa powder
  • 1 t vanilla extract
  • 1/4 t salt
  • 1/2 t baking powder
  • 1 egg
  • 1 T water
Instructions
1. Preheat oven to 350 F. 2. Beat all ingredients with an electric mixer in a medium bowl, adding egg and water last. 3. Line a 9x13 pan with parchment paper. Pour batter into pan and spread with a spatula, leaving about a half inch around the edges. 4. Bake for 30-35 minutes until edges are crisp but not burnt. Pull brownies out of the oven. 5. Turn oven to 300 F. 6. Use a spatula to turnover brownies and break up the pieces. 7. Place back in oven for 8 minutes, turning over brownies halfway through. 8. Take parchment out of pan and place on counter (if heat proof) or a cookie sheet. 9. Move pieces around more and allow to cool. 10. Place cooled brownie brittle in a food processor and pulse until fine, some larger chunks are okay for extra crunch. NOTE: As an alternative you can make just brownie brittle. Do not break up brownie as in step 6. Just leave whole and put the brownies back in at 300 F for 8 minutes to dry out more. Continue to let dry out on the counter. Break into large pieces and enjoy with some milk or coffee.
Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: approximately 3 cups crumbs

Excess brownie brittle crumbs make an excellent ice cream topping! You could even throw some on your popcorn, wait what? Who said that?

chocolate

Listening to: Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats

Peppermint Bark

This recipe is easy, no fuss, delicious, and perfect for a last minute hostess gift or to add as a bonus gift. 

peppermint bark

With this no fuss recipe, I am giving you a no fuss blog post with little writing and just a few pictures. 

I love peppermint bark and made it for the first time years ago and thought I was so clever for recreating a loved holiday candy but seriously is laughably easy. Feel free to replace the candy canes with roasted almonds, m&ms, or anything else you desire! Or even add something between the two layers of chocolate for a yummy surprise. 

peppermint bark
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Peppermint Bark
This recipe is easy, no fuss, delicious, and perfect for a last minute hostess gift or to add as a bonus gift. 
Ingredients
  • 2 4oz semisweet chocolate bars (I used Bakers)
  • 2 4oz white chocolate bars (I used Nestle, but prefer Bakers)
  • 8 candy canes, standard size
  • Wax paper
Instructions
1. Using the double boiler method or microwave method, melt semisweet chocolate. For the double boiler method, simmer a few inches of water and put double boiler top (or a glass bowl) on top of the pot. Add semisweet chocolate and stir until smooth. Take off heat. For the microwave method, place chocolate in microwave safe bowl and microwave for 30 second intervals until melted.2. While semisweet chocolate is melting, place a piece of wax paper on a baking sheet (the baking sheet is purely for easy transportation of bark so it is optional.)3. Dump melted chocolate on prepared wax paper and use a rubber spatula to smooth it into a square or oval. The thickness of the chocolate layer is up to you, I kept mine smaller so it is thicker. 4. Allow chocolate to harden slightly, about a half hour, or stick in the fridge for a bit.  5. While waiting, crush candy canes. The easiest way for me is to place unwrapped candy canes in a sealed plastic bag and use a glass cup to crush. Set aside.6. Melt white chocolate, using same method as before, and dump onto semisweet chocolate. (Make sure to read the melting instructions for the white chocolate because some brands require the addition of vegetable oil). 7. Quickly but gently smooth white chocolate over semisweet chocolate. The most difficult part is to not press to hard and mix the chocolates together. 8. Once smoothed over, sprinkle crushed candy canes over the white chocolate.  9. Wait for it to cool, or use the fridge, and then use a large knife cut pieces and package. You can break it apart as well but the knife creates straight lines. 
Details
Yield: 10-15 pieces of bark
peppermint bark

Listening to: (watching) Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

Peanut Brittle Play by Play

Peanut brittle is simple, cooked sugar and peanuts but, unfortunately, the actual process is a little more complicated.  

peanut brittle

I have been wanting to make some sort of candy for a while but have been intimidated by working with hot sugar and very specific temperatures. Candy making is chemistry and I've never been that great at science. I chose peanut brittle because I thought it would be a good stepping stone into making candy. Although I own a candy thermometer, it is in storage hundreds of miles away so this is done without a candy thermometer and at high elevation (approximately 6300 ft). 

peanut brittle

My first attempt at brittle was a failure, as I suspected it might be (picture on the left). I overcooked the sugar and was not quick enough with incorporating the butter and baking soda. The consistency was edible but was more like honey comb candy because it had many air bubbles. I was not too frustrated and promised myself to attempt three times before giving up. I quickly tried again and made a few adjustments including adding more peanuts, adding the peanuts sooner, and pulling the pan off the heat earlier since it will still brown after you take it off. Thankfully, the second attempt was a success! The brittle actually looks like peanut brittle, which is a good start. More importantly, it is crunchy, peanuty, and sweet. I look forward to perfecting my technique. 

This recipe was adapted from a culmination of peanut brittle recipes, not specifically one, as they typically follow a similar ingredient list and procedure order. 

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Peanut Brittle
Classic Peanut Brittle, perfect for gifts!
Ingredients
  • 1 C sugar
  • 1/4 C cold water
  • 1/2 C light corn syrup
  • 1/4 t coarse salt
  • 1 1/2 C lightly salted and roasted peanuts
  • 1 t baking soda
  • 2 T softened butter
Instructions
1. Grease cookie sheet and set aside, near where you are making brittle. Have softened butter and baking soda measured in a small bowl together and ready to use later. 2. In a heavy bottom sauce pan add sugar, water, corn syrup, and salt. Turn heat to high and whisk together until sugar is incorporated. Whisk in peanuts. 3. Resist touching it and allow it to begin to darken around the edges. 4. Once the edges start to brown, turn heat to medium, and swirl (do not stir). Continually swirl until amber color becomes even. 5. Turn heat off and remove from burner, if using electric range, and quickly add butter and baking soda. Use whisk to incorporate and immediately dump onto greased cookie sheet. 6. Shake sheet continually to spread mixture. 7. Wait for it to cool and then break apart. 
Details
Total time: Yield: 1 slab of peanut brittle

I look forward to making more in the future and giving some out for holidays since most people are fond of peanut brittle, why wouldn't they be? As I said, cooked sugar and peanuts. 

I will probably tweak this recipe but most brittle recipes have the same basic ingredients: sugar, water, corn syrup, butter and baking soda. 

peanut brittle

I used this Bon Appetit article to learn a few tips and tricks to better my success without a candy thermometer. Bon Appetit magazine and their website are places I love to get ideas, inspiration, recipes, and confidence. 

The first of many Christmas candy and cookie recipes!

Listening to: The Office season 3