I am not ready for the warm weather yet! Eighty degrees already this week. Students are begging me to take them outside, but warmer weather means we're that much closer to the SOL tests and SOLs mean we have no time to fart around. I would like to use the outdoors as an incentive, but if the reward involves work, most of these kids don't care (sadly). Maybe they'll surprise me as they do occasionally.
Another incentive I like to use is food. On holidays, I bring in food for no reason, but on most days, I'm bringing in baked goods because the students--surprise, surprise-- actually worked hard and I wanted to reward them. Today, I brought in White Chocolate Brownies. I've made these before for Valentine's Day and they were a hit. Now, I would have loved to have made these the way that Smitten Kitchen originally did, but I forgot to buy a heart-shaped cookie cutter, so I had no way of cutting them to make black and white brownies, so I just took them in plain. I've made them a couple times after that (plain) because the kids like 'em and I like making 'em. One bowl brownies! So easy.
One batch normally makes thinner slices than mine above, but I had a little mishap... What happened was... when I went to pour the batter into the baking pan, the pan toppled over the counter and fell all over me and my kitchen floor. I was able to save maybe half the batter, so I just combined that with the second batch. See, I'm still learning: Never, ever leave baking pans halfway on the counter because it will only result in a big mess. Good thing I bought enough white chocolate!
These come out chewy, but with crispy edges (and this is why I love corner pieces). Definitely butter the foil that lines the baking pan because I didn't once and it was so hard to get the brownies off. Parchment paper might be a better option, but still butter it. The regular chocolate version is also delish. Make both!
White Chocolate Brownies [Makes 16 2-inch squares]
From Smitten Kitchen
3 oz (85g) semisweet or good white chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 stick (4 oz or 113g) unsalted butter, plus extra for greasing pan
3/4 cup plus 2 tbsp (6 1/8 oz or 175g) sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp (5 ml) vanilla
1/4 tsp table salt or 1/2 tsp flaky salt (about 2g)
2/3 cup (83g) all-purpose flour
Preheat oven to 350F. Line an 8×8-inch square baking pan with foil, with ends of foil extending over opposite sides of pan. Repeat with second piece of foil in opposite direction. Butter foil.
Melt white or dark chocolate and butter together in a large bowl over a simmering pot of water until it is 90% melted; remove from heat and stir the mixture until it is smooth. Whisk in sugar. Whisk in eggs, one at a time, then vanilla. Add flour and salt together, stirring until just combined. Spread into prepared pan and bake for 25 to 30 minutes (for the dark chocolate version) and 30 to 35 minutes (for the white chocolate version).
Let cool and use foil handles the lift brownies out of pan. Freezing them will make cutting cleaner, but letting them cool to room temp works fine too.