Okay, I’m just going to be real with you guys. Today I had a ginormous reminder of one of the main reasons I wanted to start a recipe blog…
How could imperfection be a motivator for starting a blog? Well for a while I told myself that I was not smart enough to learn how to run a website, that I was too old, that I wasn’t pretty enough to run a recipe blog or put my face on the internet, that my personality was too weird, that people wouldn’t relate to my experiences, that my crabshack themed kitchen was too ugly…the list goes on. If you read the about me page, you’ll see that this year has kind of reeked havoc on my self-esteem. I was at a low point earlier this year, but instead of dwelling on the things I wanted to label as wrong with me, I decided to own up to them instead and move on. Because, no matter what how someone portrays themselves, we’re all imperfect! Completely and wonderfully flawed in ways that make us humble, relatable and human.
The world tells us to cover up our imperfections, never show our flaws or weaknesses or no one will like us. Well, I’ve always been a non-conformist so it is inherent to my nature to go against that. More than that, I don’t really want to be perfect. Average and full of the flaws that make me me is good enough. I want to be a voice out here that you can relate to. Running a recipe blog, it is my job to show you dishes that are staged, plated, and photographed just as beautifully as they can be. I really enjoy that and I work hard to do my best at presenting my readers with beautiful, enticing dishes.
But guess what?
There are times when what I think is going to be a brilliant idea falls apart into a giant mess. Take for instance this idea, a brownie roll with spiked whipped cream and topped with dark chocolate ganache. An indulgent grown up Little Debbie Swiss Cake roll with fudgy brownie. Sounds yummy, doesn’t it?
You know what I ended up with? A tea towel caked with smooshed and broken brownie globs. Now, because I was born without that part of my brain that says, “Amy, you shouldn’t do embarrassing things in public,” I’ve decided to go ahead and share it with you. Sure I could have hidden it, but in real life I own up to my failures as well as my successes, so I don’t know why I would treat AHB any different. And boy was this an epic fail! (I used a brown tea towel so that if any brownie stuck it would not stain. I also sprinkled it liberally with flour to prevent sticking. It didn’t matter, this was destined to suck.)
After that ridiculous selfie session, I put on my big girl pants and got back to work. I threw away that brown, brownied, failure-iffic tea towel of mess (there was no way to salvage that thing) and tried again. This time keeping it simple–homemade fudge brownies with hazelnut ganache.
Fabulous in spite of the flawed start? Absolutely!
I hope that you guys will really enjoy these. If you are a hard core chocoholic, trust me, you will. These fudge brownies are about as simple to make as a boxed brownie mix, but taste soo much better. The hazelnut ganache is also a quick fix and it turns out so sinfully dark and rich. I dug into my hidden stash of “mental health chocolate” and crushed some Ferrero Rocher over the tops just for fun. Have a wonderfully flawed week being your own brand of you!
Fudge Brownies with Hazelnut Ganache
- 1 cup butter
- 2 cups sugar
- 4 large eggs
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 cup hazelnut spread
- 2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
- 3 Tablespoons butter
- 3 Tablespoons heavy whipping cream
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Grease a 9x13 pan with no stick spray.
In a large microwavable bowl, melt the butter in the microwave at 50% power. Add in the sugar, vanilla, and eggs, mixing well. Next mix in the flour, cocoa powder, salt, and baking powder. Spread the batter in your prepared pan.
Bake for 25-30 minutes. Do not overbake.
While the brownies are still warm from the oven, make the ganache. Heat the cream and butter in a small saucepan until it is almost to the point of boiling. Remove from the heat and add in the chocolate chips. Whisk together until they are all melted and smooth. Add in the hazelnut spread and whisk again until smooth. This may be kind of runny. Pour it over the brownies. It will set up as it cools, though if you desire it to set up faster you may stick it in the fridge.