Happy Cream Cheese Brownie Day! (and an excerpt)
Happy Cream Cheese Brownie Day! Seriously, it’s a real holiday.
In my upcoming cozy mystery series, Great Aunt Eve – who is dead, by the way – loves a good holiday. Her zest for life is shown through her excitement over the fantastic as well as the mundane. And today, we’re celebrating with her in mind.
Cream Cheese Brownie Day
In case you want a little history on the day, there’s not much. It’s a day to celebrate both cream cheese – which is awesome – and brownies – also awesome. Do you need a reason or explanation beyond that? Accept and indulge. You’re welcome.
Aunt Eve would have loved today’s holiday.
Just past the police station and down a few doors from the library sat Aunt Eve’s house. My house. My three-story, old Victorian, bright purple house sat on the side of the road with a huge maypole erected in the front yard. Brightly colored ribbons streamed down from the golden ball that adorned the top. Baskets of dead flowers littered the front porch. Wooden children were scattered along the walkway with fake balloons and pockets full of candy.
“Festive,” Isabelle said as she pulled the Mustang to a stop in front of the house.
“Just be glad that she died before she could decorate for National Sea Monkey Day, or as the rest of us call it, May 16th.”
“Underwater theme?” Isabelle turned off the engine. “This is going to be an interesting trip.”
She had no idea.
Excerpt from With Love, Your Dead Aunt by Stephanie Pitcher Fishman
In true Aunt Eve fashion, my family is celebrating Cream Cheese Brownie Day today (February 10th), and you should, too!
To celebrate, we’re going to be “pulling a Roy” which means to eat our dessert first in memory of my uncle who championed the practice. On today’s menu: Cream Cheese Brownies and Vanilla Ice Cream with Homemade Chocolate Sauce. I can’t think of a better way to wrap up the week.
Everyone has their own opinion on what makes a good brownie. Whether you like them chewy and gooey or dry and cake-like, you’ll be able to find a plethora of recipes available on the internet. Here’s one that I’m very pleased to make because it’s as rich as it is simple: Cream-Cheese Brownies by Martha Stewart.
The ice cream is the easy part. If you want to really be healthy you can make some Banana Nice Cream like my baby girl will be eating, but the rest of you can just drive your happy butts to the local grocer and get whatever creamy cold goodness you’d like.
But the chocolate sauce? You need to go homemade for that. My sweetie’s family kept a staple recipe clipped from a newspaper long ago, and we still use it today. It makes him happy to have a childhood favorite on the table, and I love that I can whip it up in a jiffy. It makes a ton, so be prepared to save it in the fridge or cut the recipe in half.
I’ve made this with various types of sugar, adjustments in the vanilla, butter, or cream (since I don’t tend to measure), and even increasing or decreasing the baker’s chocolate. The moral of this recipe is that it is fairly forgiving. Make it your own.
I hear this keeps in the fridge for a few weeks but it’s never made it that far for us. It will thicken, but I’ve yet to have it fully crystallize. It’s always easy to spoon out for a quick dollop in a glass of milk or to top off a late night snack. Not that I do that…
Homemade Chocolate Sauce
Prep time: 5 minutes
Total time: 10 minutes
- 1 package (8 squares) unsweetened baking chocolate – *Note: this seems to be equivalent to half a standard package in today’s grocery
- 1/4 cup butter
- 2 cups sugar
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
- 1-2 tsp vanilla
- Microwave the chocolate and butter in a large bowl on high for 2 minutes or until the butter is melted. Stir til combined.
- Add sugar, milk, and cream, and stir until combined. Microwave for 5 minutes stirring halfway, or until the sugar is completely dissolved.
- Stir in vanilla.
- Makes 3.5 cups. Keep covered in the fridge and warm as needed.
Look for my first cozy mystery, With Love, Your Dead Aunt, in paperback and Kindle on Amazon Spring 2017!
About Stephanie Pitcher Fishman
Author Stephanie Pitcher Fishman writes fiction and nonfiction rooted in personal stories. Whether it's her best-selling historical fiction novel, Finding Eliza, about the effects of hidden secrets in a family tree or the stories of her own battle with chronic illness, she loves to share stories of real emotions with others. She also thinks that Joss Whedon can strike creative lightning at will.