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Recipe-I Can't Believe There's No Butter Chocolate Brownie



This. All of this.


It's full-blown holiday season here. Starbucks has brought out its big guns with yuletide cheer a-blazin' from every corner of their stores, and drink concoctions that would make any one of Santa's elves do a little jig. It's the season of getting together with family and friends, of sharing good times surrounded by food. It's the season of lots of wine and office parties that get just a little out of control. When you only basically have a one time ticket a year to embarrass yourself that much around colleagues, you make use of it.

To be honest, I don't even mind that it starts right after Halloween, and in China it seems to last until after Chinese New Year. It's just one big long haul of red ribbons, fake snow, and light displays that I am sure can be seen from space. Around here, it's about sharing your favorite holiday traditions with those from other cultures, and making new memories with your children that won't be anything like what you had as a kid, but magical nonetheless.

Every year during this season, I am always taken back to my grandma's kitchen, where she would set up a pop-up bakery to fill every friend's and acquaintance's stomach with sweets made from recipes that had been passed down to all of the women in the family. Each would be wrapped in waxed paper and placed in a tin, awaiting it's turn to make someone's day.


I believe it was around this time of year when I created this brownie recipe for the restaurant. I wanted something super indulgent that no one would guess in a million years was 100% plant-based. We used to serve it with our coconut vanilla ice cream and drizzled caramel sauce. When I was pregnant, I ate this at least three times a week, once (or twice) on the way home because there was no way I was waiting to stuff that sweet stuff in my mouth.


80% baby, 20% cake.

Luckily, our customers loved them too, and that year we were given the opportunity to share them with so many kind people at the Animal's Asia Moon Bear fundraiser, the Blue Moon Gala. It's something that made my heart happy and I think would have made my grandma proud.


I hope this brownie recipe brings you and your loved ones a bit of happiness this holiday season.


Ingredients:


Brownie Base-


½ C melted coconut oil (I use refined) or vegan butter or margarine

2 chia eggs (2 tbs ground chia seed mixed with 6 tbs cool water and let to set for about 10 minutes)

1 C white sugar (can sub coconut sugar)

1 tsp vanilla extract

⅓ C cocoa powder

½ C flour

¼ tsp salt

¼ tsp baking powder

½ C chopped walnuts (omit to make nut-free)


Chocolate Frosting-


1½ tbs softened vegan butter, coconut oil or margarine (vegan butter or margarine are best)

1½ tbs cocoa powder

2 tsp maple syrup

½ tsp vanilla

½ C confectioner's sugar


Directions:


Brownie Base-


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and flour an 8-inch square pan.

2. In a large mixing bowl, beat butter, sugar, eggs, and 1 teaspoon vanilla together until mixture is thoroughly combined.

3. Slowly (or risk a snowy cocoa and flour mess on your ugly Christmas sweater) beat in 1/3 cup cocoa, 1/2 cup flour, salt, and baking powder.

4. Spread batter evenly into a lined 9x9 baking pan pan.

5. Bake in preheated oven for 25 to 30 minutes, make sure to check with a toothpick and as soon as nothing is sticking, take that pan of sweet, sweet brownies out of the oven.


Chocolate Frosting-


1. Mix ingredients together on low with a mixer or stir with a spatula until smooth.


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