Spooky Chocolate Orange Brownies with a Kick!
- parchment paper
- 15 by 10 inch rimmed baking pan
- pumpkin, cat and/or moon cookie cutters
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- ¾ cup unsweetened cocoa powder, plus additional for sprinkling
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 2 cups sugar
- 1 cup unsalted butter, melted
- 3 eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Finely shredded zest from a medium orange, about ¾ teaspoon
- Use butter to grease a 15 by 10-inch rimmed baking pan. Line the pan with parchment. Preheat oven to 350ºF.
- Sift flour, cocoa powder, cinnamon, cayenne pepper and salt into a small bowl; set aside.
- Stir together sugar and melted butter in a large bowl until blended; add eggs one at a time, stirring after each addition until combined. Add vanilla and orange zest and stir to blend well. Add flour mixture and stir gently just until completely mixed.
- Spread mixture onto prepared pan (it will be a thin layer of batter) and bake 16 to18 minutes or until toothpick inserted into the brownie comes out clean (do not over bake). Cool in pan on a wire rack. If you are cutting shapes, cover and refrigerate brownies until chilled. (Brownies can be chilled overnight)
- To cut brownies into shapes, turn baking pan over onto a large baking pan or cutting board, peel away parchment paper and invert back onto a cutting board or directly onto clean kitchen counter. Use cookie cutters to cut out brownies, positioning cutters to maximize the number of brownies. To facilitate releasing brownies from cutters, dip cookie cutter into cocoa before pressing into brownie. If desired, sprinkle brownies with cocoa, using a fine strainer or sifter. (Keeps the scraps for nibbling.) Store brownies, covered, in the refrigerator.
- Makes about 25 brownies (depending on shape).
Thank you dear Lord for fun and laughter, for traditions and customs that unite young and old, and for the opportunity to pause our daily work to celebrate life with one another.