Friday, February 28, 2014

Pheasants...not under glass...but in the grass...under the birdfeeder.


You never know who will show up at the birdfeeder. Here are two Ring-necked Pheasants. Last year we had one hanging around for three months. These two have been here about a month and a half and by March, they will most likely move on towards their summer range.  It has been enjoyable to look for them and watch them feed. We will be sorry to see them go. Hope they come back next year with a couple of mates.  

Monday, February 17, 2014

Reese’s Peanut Butter Fudge Brownies

 Reese’s Peanut Butter Fudge Brownies
  • 1 cup unsalted butter
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 (12 oz) bag mini Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, cut into quarters (divided)

Peanut Butter Fudge Frosting:
  • 1 (8 oz) block cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 4 cups powdered sugar, sifted
  • 1 (15 oz) jar natural peanut butter
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 6 oz milk chocolate chips, melted

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a 9x13 baking dish with parchment paper, set aside.
  2. Place butter in a large microwave safe mixing bowl, melt completely. Add sugar, cocoa, vanilla and eggs. Whisk to combine well. Add remaining ingredients. Whisk until completely combined, but do not over mix.
  3. Pour into prepared baking dish. Sprinkle 10-15 mini Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups cut into quarters over batter, press into batter with a spatula until they are covered. Bake for 20 minutes or until a tooth pick comes out clean. Place in the freezer to cool, about 15 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile: Combine cream cheese and butter in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Beat on medium speed until smooth and creamy, about 3 minutes. Add sugar. Beat on low until combined, then switch to medium speed and eat until light and creamy. Add peanut butter, vanilla and salt. Beat mixture until well combined.
  5. Spread frosting over top of cooled brownie. Sprinkle remaining peanut butter cups over the top of the frosting.
  6. Drizzle melted chocolate over top of brownies. Serve and enjoy.
COOK'S NOTE:  These brownies freeze very well. Be sure to wrap well and defrost for 30 minutes before eating.

Friday, February 14, 2014