Creme de Menthe Brownies

Maybe now that we've been grocery shopping and life no longer feels like a perpetual snow day, it's time to start cooking again.  In the last six days, we've gotten approximately 18 inches of snow, dealt with below zero temperatures and wind chills into the negative teens.  Oh, and temperatures well over 50 degrees.  Welcome to winter in New England.
Anyway, I guess the last baking and/or cooking (besides making chicken to go with a taco kit this evening for dinner or heating up the organic version of spaghettios) was for New Years Eve and New Years Day parties.  Two separate parties.  We aren't that intense.  
I was already making a dessert for one party, and was asked to make dessert for the other.  How perfect is that?  
I knew exactly what I wanted to make, even.  See, there are these brownies that have become a family legend.  On both sides.  They are called mo' brownies.  As in "more" brownies.  The original recipe was introduced into the famliy by SJM.  I don't know the whole story, but eventually dad started making them to bring to his weekend with his siblings.  I'm pretty sure they would kick him out if he stopped bringing them.  Well, maybe not quite.  He did forget them one year (it was my fault, technically), and they let him in.  But I'm not sure he will ever live it down.  
I knew I had to share the goodness.  So, I made them for, well, both parties.  I cheated a little bit. 
And there is kind of a story that goes with them too.  I didn't have the recipe on me when we were headed to the grocery store.  So, I forgot to get unsweetened chocolate.  And I really, really didn't want to go out again.  

Note: It is possible to use 1 oz. of unsweetened chocolate plus one tablespoon of sugar as a substitution for 1 oz. semisweet chocolate.  When working in the opposite direction, 1 oz. of semisweet chocolate and one tablespoon less of sugar does not quite equal 1 oz. of unsweetened chocolate.  It worked decently well, but was much, much less chocolatey than expected.  

The original plan was to make one batch of mo' brownies and one batch of Kahlua cream brownies.  
But the first brownie layer for the mo' brownies (a.k.a. the ones made with semisweet instead of unsweetened chocolate) just looked disappointingly light.  They looked plenty dense and chewy, which was right, but they looked way too light for the dark, dense brownies I was expecting.  
So, I started over the next night.  Well, with the mint ones.  I actually froze the intended Kahlua ones (to return later!), and transferred the first mint brownie layer into the first layer of the Kahlua ones.  It worked.  I just brushed it with some extra Kahlua on the brownies before I frosted them.  You couldn't even taste the mint!
Then came all the frosting and ganaching.  I had to run errands in order to have enough butter.  And then just as I was finishing washing the very last chocolate covered dish, the plumber showed up to install a new hot water heater.  Good timing.
I then had to cut them without water . . . that was a little messy.  And gooey.  And sticky. 
I've also decided that making the mo' brownies recipe with Kahlua instead of creme de menthe is totally a thing.  Even though it wasn't quiteee what I did.  Yeah.

Mo' Brownies
Maybe from the Star Tribune?

Brownie layer:
6 oz. unsweetened chocolate
1/2 cup butter
4 eggs
2 cups sugar
1 cup flour
2 tbsp. creme de menthe (or Kahlua)

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.  Spray a 9 by 13 pan with cooking spray. 

Melt the chocolate and butter in a double boiler or microwave, stirring often.   Allow to cool slightly.

Beat the eggs lightly.  Add the sugar gradually, beating after each addition.  Add the chocolate mixture.  

Add the flour and mix well.  Add the creme de menthe (or Kahlua) and stir well.  Spread the mixture into the prepared pan. 

Bake for 30 minutes.  Allow to cool.

Filling layer:
1/2 cup butter, softened
2 cup confectioner's sugar
2 tbsp. creme de menthe (or Kahlua)

Cream the butter.  Add the sugar and creme de menthe (or Kahlua).  Mix until smoothed. 

Spread over the brownies when they are completely cool (or the next day after the brownies have been refrigerated). 

Chill for 10-15 minutes, at least.

Ganache layer:
6 oz. semisweet chocolate
4 tbsp. butter
2 tbsp.  creme de menthe (or Kahlua)

Melt the chocolate and butter together in a double boiler or the microwave, stirring often.  Add the creme de menthe (or Kahlua) and mix well.

Allow to cool slightly, and spread over the filling gently.  

Chill the brownies until the chocolate is hardened before cutting.  


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