Accidental Blondies

>> Friday, February 4, 2011

We ate these blondies so fast, I almost didn't have time to snap a photo of them. Inspired by one of Richard Simmon's recipes (in his Dazzling Desserts cookbook we have all come to know and love), we've made these treats vegan.

They were supposed to be rocky road brownies . . . but after I had mixed together the wet ingredients, I discovered we didn't have any cocoa powder.


The whole reason I was home on a Wednesday with time to bake (it was crazy wonderful to actually have time to do stuff I wanted to do) is because there was a horrible ice/snow storm. So, I wasn't exactly gunning it to the grocery store to replenish my supplies.

No cocoa powder? No problem! That's one of the best pieces of advice I can give you. Generally, what I mean is -- if you don't have the specific ingredients a recipe, don't worry. You can always substitute something else in a pinch. Just get creative!

(Print This Recipe!)

What you'll need . . . 
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon Bob's Red Mill egg replacer (whisked with 3 tablespoons water)
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup hazelnut meal
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup dry-roasted peanuts

Method . . .
  1. Preheat your oven to 375 degrees F. Spritz an 8 x 8 inch baking pan with canola oil. (My pan is glass, I don't really know if that matters much, though.)
  2. Whisk together the oil, sugar, maple syrup, egg replacer, applesauce, and vanilla extract. Combine until smooth and well incorporated.
  3. In another bowl, whisk together the hazelnut meal, coconut flakes, flours, salt, and baking powder. Then add the dry ingredients to the wet and mix until just incorporated. (I mixed by hand -- don't over-mix.)
  4. Fold in the chocolate chips and peanuts. Then pour mixture into the pan.
  5. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes -- until edges are golden brown and middle is set. (You can test middle done-ness by sticking a toothpick in and seeing if it comes out clean.)

Richard Simmons recipes? Yes. This is for real. And we've been baking our way through the book for a few months now. If you want to check out other recipes, follow these links:
In other news, I finished my cowl-neck scarf. I had planned to make it longer, more of a double-wrap, but I got inpatient. Plus, if I had made it longer, I don't think it would have turned out as nicely.

If you'd like to make one, all you need to do is:
  1. Get some colorful yarn (I used Stitch Nation "Full O' Sheep" in passionfruit pink and poppy red).
  2. Get some knitting needles (size US 9 / 5.5 mm).
  3. Learn the basic cast-on, knit, and cast-off methods (you can find links to instructions on my eternity scarf tutorial).
  4. Cast on 50 stitches. Then knit your scarf until it is your desired length (basically, it just needs to fit over your head with about a 2 inch gap on all sides so it will drape nicely).
  5. Cast-off and then stitch the two ends together with a basic whipstitch.
What are your weekend plans? Our treadmill is being fixed tonight! Otherwise, I want to organize the house more. I'm addicted to tidying up right now, so I must take advantage! Just leave a comment or email us at neverhomemaker [at] gmail [dot] com.

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