Prior to Isaac leaving for 3 weeks of sleep away camp, he was very specific on what he wanted his “last meal” to be. His pre-camp meal was baked macaroni and cheese with bacon, lamb chops, and chopped salad. Not a meal that I would normally serve all in one sitting, but Isaac’s wish was my command. That morning, as we were driving up to camp, he congratulated me on the perfect pre-camp meal and in the same sentence listed what his wishes were for his post camp dinner. Three weeks away without mom’s cooking got him thinking. Upon his return his requests were blueberry coffee cake for the morning. For dinner; hot wings, homemade cream soda, lemon potatoes (made on the BBQ), a huge salad, and gooey brownies topped with vanilla ice cream. “You got it”, was my response.
After dropping him off at camp, with still a small tear in my eye, I had already formulated the shopping list and visualized how it would be served. I had found these cute, 4″ cast iron skillets at my favorite hardware store. It seemed like the perfect opportunity to make individual mudslides for each of my 4 boys. While he was away, I tested the recipe using gluten free flours and all Eli could say was, “wow”! I knew I had a winner on my hand. Another one to add to the arsenal!
With left over batter, I prepped an 8″ square cake pan and baked off a batch for one of my favorite friends; Eli’s former 5th grade teacher (4 years later, she and I still adore each other). Levi and I were very excited to meet her new baby twins. Cute Splendid outfits for the babies and a big box of brownies for the parents. Everybody wins!
Isaac’s homecoming was better than great. The best part about it was that while his two brothers were getting ready to start school the next day, Isaac and I had two weeks to hang before he had to go back to school. This past week he started middle school. Those two weeks spent together, just he and I was just what the two of us needed to wrap up the end of a pretty perfect summer.
Gluten Free Ooey-Gooey Skillet Brownies
if you don’t follow a gluten free diet, substitute the alternative flours for equal parts traditional all-purpose flour. These are best eaten the 2nd day with a huge class of ice cold milk!
yield: 16 2″ squares
8 ounces | 224 grams | 16 tablespoons unsalted butter
4 ounces | 118 grams | 1/2 cup unsweetened chocolate, chopped
1/2 teaspoon espresso powder
14 ounces | 400 grams | 2 cups organic, pure cane sugar
2 eggs, beaten
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
5 ounces | 140 grams | 1 cup gluten free flour blend , sifted
1/2 teaspoon xanthum gum
2 ounces | 56 grams | 1/2 cup walnuts, chopped
2 1/2 ounces | 70 grams | 1/2 cup bittersweet chocolate, rough chopped
• preheat oven to 325*
• lightly butter an 8″ x 8″ square baking pan. line with parchment paper and butter the paper as well. set aside.
• in a large glass bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water, melt butter and unsweetened chocolate. while this is melting prep additional ingredients.
• in a small bowl, sift the flour and xanthum gum. set aside.
• when melted, off heat, add the sugar, whisking to combine.
• mix in eggs and vanilla until the batter is very smooth. sometimes, when mixing by hand, the batter can look a bit grainy – you don’t want that.
• add flour mixture, walnuts, and chocolate chunks. mix.
• pour into prepared baking pan and spread evenly.
• bake for 45-55 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
• let brownies cool completely before cutting.
• best eaten within 3 days.
note: after the brownies cool, I like to stick the whole pan in the fridge for about 45 minutes. makes cutting much easier. when cutting, cut off the over done ends of the brownies and save (if your kids don’t get to them first) for toppings on ice cream or better yet, to mix into homemade ice cream.
More really great Brownie Recipes:
Walnut Fudge Brownies – In Jennie’s Kitchen
Brownie Sandwich Cookies with Salted Caramel Cream Filling – Bakers Royale
Chocolate Chip Brownie Double Deckers – Technicolor Kitchen
Orange Mocha Brownies - Daydreamer Desserts
Double Fudge Chocolate Brownies - Passionate About Baking
Espresso Fudge Brownies – Elana’s Pantry