Strawberry Rhubarb Pie, Oreo Truffle Brownies and More Busy Weekend

Let's see.  I left off with a picnic at the beach on Friday evening with the S family.  And that's only half the weekend.  I told you it was a busy weekend!

After the S crew left on Friday night, I had a few more errands to do.  Part of the point of going strawberry picking this week was to make dad his annual strawberry rhubarb pie.  I started the pie crust on Friday night so it could refrigerate overnight.

And then, because I wasn't sure if I was going to be headed out to another party on Saturday evening, I started my brownies for Sunday.  But that's a story for later.

After such a crazy and busy day, I figured I'd sleep like a rock.  But I didn't.  I was even up before NES, which is a rarity in and of itself, and started baking before he was up and about.  That is really rare.  It was his idea to have a fresh pie for mom and dad's visit on Saturday.  So I got up Saturday morning and sliced tons of strawberries.

This is what was left after my slicing party.  That's a lot less than the flat that I came home with.  I was amazed how fast they went!

I had great rhubarb from the S's crazy rhubarb plant last weekend.  It was amazing.  I wasn't scrounging for enough for my pie!  That's what I usually have to do.

I ended up putting in about a cup extra of both strawberries and rhubarb.
Over-stuffed pies are always better than empty ones!!

And of course, I made a lattice crust!  It wasn't my most beautiful crust ever, but hey.  It worked.

Then I baked it.  I got it in and had time to clean up before mom and dad came!  Huzzah!

When I pulled it out of the oven, I was very, very glad I thought to put a cookie sheet beneath it.  There was a LOT of extra juice that bubbled out.

It even ended up all over the extra crust I made for NES.  But the curlicues came out fine!  (I think that the word curlicues should have a q in it.  Seriously.)

So we had a fresh pie!

We headed out on a very hot and humid day to a great vintage flea market and craft fair!  NES and I found a chest for our blankets!  It was a lot of fun.  Even if it was a little hot.  Ok, a lot hot.

But there were lots of fun things to look at!  It was kind of like living inside Pinterest for a few hours.

We stopped at our favorite Mexican restaurant afterwards for lunch, and ate so much that we didn't have room for pie!  Oops!  After all that.

But we did eat it -- just in small amounts!
There was a lot left over!

There was time to digest while we walked around downtown.

I found Kinder eggs!  And I was not in a foreign country!  I was very, very excited.

And there was time for Father's Day and belated Mother's Day gifts!

I didn't make it to the party that evening, but maybe it was better that I had a little time to sit down!

I also had time to finish the brownies from Friday evening.  JK came over, and while the guys did their game thing, I finished off my brownies.

The brownies were for a picnic that KEB organized.  She's been trying to get us out on a picnic for a long time, but the weather hasn't been cooperating.  And although I'm not sure that the weather cooperated yesterday either -- 90+ degree weather isn't my favorite, especially not in the sun.  But it was still fun to see people.

We moved into the shade eventually, and that was much better.

Anyway, I decided I'd bring a dessert since I really wanted to bake a cake.  However, a cake and the beach didn't sound like the best plan.  So, finally I settled on brownies.  Between the red velvet, the oreo truffle and the chocolate chips, I figured that not much could go wrong.

Besides melting in the sun.  Oops.

I felt a little bad about using the cake mix to make the brownies, but I didn't exactly know how I'd get the right consistency for the recipe with a from scratch attempt at the brownies.

They were a tiny bit crumbly, but overall the texture was really good.  I'd cheat with the mix again.  It worked out well.

Then, there was the oreo layer.  MF (soon to be MA!!) introduced me to oreo truffles a couple years ago.  I loved them.  I've made them several times since.  They are so easy and sooo tasty.

These brownies had a layer of the truffle part in the middle.  Oh my goodness.  Yum.

I didn't use the food processor because I didn't feel like cleaning it.  I was feeling a little lazy.  So, instead, I used a bag and a rolling pin.  It worked just as well.

Also, this recipe mentioned microwaving the cream cheese for 15 seconds to soften it more.  It really, really helped!  That's always the hardest part.

Then I melted half semisweet and half dark chocolate chips and spread them over the top.

Finally, I sprinkled the leftover chips on top!  I think that totally makes these brownies.  It makes them look so much more interesting.

We had a fun picnic on Sunday!  KEB brought pizza pinwheels (mmmm) and cookies, and BMM brought orzo salad.  Also yum.  We also had carrots and dip, JK brought fruit salad, and JB and LB brought chicken salad.  Thank goodness for coolers!

Somehow, at the end we ended up at Friendly's, too.  It was air conditioned and cool in there!

And that's my busy weekend.  Phew.  Now, I have to choose between leftover pie and leftover brownies for dessert . . . hmmmm.

Red Velvet Oreo Truffle Brownies
from Pizzazzerie

1 box Red Velvet cake mix
1/2 cup butter, melted
2 eggs
1 package white chocolate instant pudding
6 tbsp. vegetable oil

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.

Combine the cake mix, melted butter, eggs, pudding mix (dry) and vegetable oil in a large bowl.  Mix until well combined.

Spray and flour a 9x13 pan.  Spread the brownie batter into the pan.  It will be very thick, and may require your hands to spread it.

Bake for 20-22 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Cool completely and flip out of pan.

Oreo Truffle Filling:
1 package Oreos
8 oz. cream cheese

Crush the Oreos either in the food processor or with a plastic bag and rolling pin.

Microwave the cream cheese for 15 seconds.  Mix the Oreos into the cream cheese until combined.  Often dragging a spoon over the cream cheese helps with the mixing.

Spread the Oreo layer on top of the brownies carefully.  Again, hands will be helpful here.

1 1/2 cups chocolate chips
extra mini chocolate chips for garnish

Melt the chocolate chips.  Pour over the Oreo layer, and spread gently to cover.

While still warm, sprinkle with extra chocolate chips and press in lightly.

Let cool before cutting.


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