A few days ago I was watching the Food Network (I have a feeling you'll see me write that line alot) and good ol' Paula Deen said "Today y'all, I'll be making orange brownies!" Orange brownies, I thought? Maybe regular brownies with orange zest? Interesting. So, of course, I decided to keep watching. As she started gathering her ingredients, I realized there was absolutely no chocolate in these brownies at all. ***As I start to blog more, I'm sure you'll come to realize I don't make a lot of ALL chocolate things---just not that big of a fan of all things chocolate. Love chocolate chip cookies, but would like them just as well without the chocolate chips in them. Love chocolate cake, but only if it's heated, or I just eat the icing off the top. Don't particularly like candy bars. I'm more of a fruit flavored, cinnamon loving, other types of sweets than chocolate person. Blasphemy, I know.*** I digress. These orange brownies she was making had flour, butter, sugar, eggs, orange zest AND orange extract in them. YUM. I could smell them already. But to top it all off, she was going to put orange cream cheese icing on top of them! Delicious. So while I still have a million other recipes to try and dozens of cookbooks on my shelf waiting to be opened, I put these at the top of the list and made them.
Once again, another trip to the store. Who actually has orange extract on hand? Probably most people, other than me. Picked up cream cheese, butter, and orange extract. Now I was ready to make my orange brownies. Wrong. Forgot I needed more eggs. Blast! Back to the store again, but went in a different entrance this time because I felt silly since I had been there just 20 minutes before. NOW I was ready to make my orange brownies.
The recipe actually says to mix all of the ingredients together using a "hand- mixer." I was so surprised that it actually specified using a "hand-mixer." I have a hand-mixer, but why on earth would I want to use it now that I have my pink Kitchenaid. Ergo, I deleted that part of the recipe and used my pink Kitchenaid. Easiest recipe ever and the batter was AMAZING. I love orange flavored things and these not only smelled spectacular but tasted wonderful. And as The Neelys say...if it tastes good before you cook it, it will taste even better when it's done. I actually think they were referring to making homemade BBQ sauce when they said that, but we'll apply it to baking as well. :)
After 30 minutes, my apartment was engulfed in orange smelling goodness. While they were cooling, I made the orange icing. Super simple-powdered sugar, cream cheese, butter, orange zest, and orange juice. These were definitely going to be very orangey brownies.
I cut the brownies and individually iced a few, rather than put icing on the entire pan. Now to taste. Buttery (what else would you expect when it's a recipe from Paula Deen), orangey (two forms of orange flavoring in both brownie and icing), sweet, and really good. The texture isn't really like a fudge brownie, nor is it the same texture as a cake. They are dense, but spongy, and have a slightly crispy bottom crust and edge. To be honest, after eating bites of batter and icing, I couldn't even eat a whole brownie, but give me a few hours and I'm sure I could make a dent in this pan. If you'd like the recipe, you can find it here.
In the picture on the site, it even shows cute little slices of orange on top of each one. I grated all of the zest off of my one orange and I sure wasn't going back to the store. So decorate how you please, mine will be just iced. Enjoy!