Favorite dessert

April 11, 2010


You should answer this not taking calories into consideration, though it is true that last night instead of making brownies, I ate two grapefruit for dessert. This wasn’t because of any hippy skippy 5-A-Day thing. No, it was much simpler than that. I was out of white flour and wasn’t confident enough that brownies made with whole wheat flour wouldn’t taste, well, you know, like chocolate cardboard.

I wouldn’t say I’m a huge fan of dessert. Unlike my dad, I don’t feel like I need a little sweet something to finish off a meal. If something comes my way, I might eat it, but I don’t feel incomplete without it by any stretch of the imagination.

Once again, I am influenced by my mom on what my gut instinct answer is to the question of my favorite dessert—pecan pie. I prefer it without a dollop of ice cream, though I might like it just warm enough to take the chill off. And if I were being completely truthful, I would also say that really, to me the pecan nuts are at least 50% incidental to my enjoyment of this delight. I like the sugary sweet custard, plain and simple.

I like regular yellow egg custard, too. My Grandma H often made it when we’d go visit in the summer. She had brown ceramic custard cups. Not ramekins, just cauldron-shaped dishes. I suppose they could have been considered ramekins, but they weren’t the white ones you mostly see today.

I also like cheesecake—just plain cheesecake with no “fruit” toppings. My favorite non-plain cheesecake was the Butterfinger cheesecake at Pizza Lucé in the Warehouse District in about 2003, I’ll say. I never saw it other than that one day. Pizza Lucé’s pizza is amazing; the Butterfinger cheesecake was out of this world.

Ice cream is sometimes good. By ice cream I mean plain chocolate in a sugar cone, or a chocolate malt extra malt, such as the kind I get at Potbelly Sandwich Works.

By now you may be wondering why I picture brownies. The answer is simple. They are the easiest to make at home with the ingredients I have on hand anyway. Okay, I suppose technically it’s easier to scoop ice cream out of a cardboard carton, but you can’t just whip up a batch of ice cream with ingredients that are just lying around. Brownies you can.

And I like making them myself because then I know what’s in them. So this is the recipe I use. I don’t bother with the cream cheese filling because that would require forethought. I just make the brownie part, and I have adapted it as it is typed in. The original recipe is pictured below.

Today I ate my grapefruit in conjunction with my brunch (this is the best time of year for delicious grapefruit in the Northern Hemisphere and they’re my favorite fruit, so I’m eating them frequently right now). In honor of the question of my favorite dessert I went ahead and made the brownies using whole wheat flour, pictured above. I’m pleased to report that they don’t taste at all like cardboard.


(my adapted version)

3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/8 teaspoon salt

1 cup sugar
2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 cup butter or stick margarine, melted
1 tablespoon water
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large eggs

Preheat oven to 350°F. Coat the bottom of an 8” x 8” pan with cooking spray. Combine the flour through salt in one bowl. Combine the sugar through eggs in another bowl, stirring well with a whisk. Add the wet mixture to the dry mixture, stirring until just moist. Spread evenly in the pan. Bake for 40 minutes. Cool on a wire rack. Cut into 16 pieces.

(original version, pictured below)

One Response to “Favorite dessert”

  1. someToast Says:

    I’ve never had brownies with cream cheese, but I do love plain ones (or with chocolate chips). I think my favorite was a pineappley-cheesecakey thing my mom made that I got close to duplicating last Halloween.

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