We’re having a bake sale! It’s being held at the church that both Tiffany and I attend, and it’s going to benefit the teams from there going on short term mission trips to Bosnia and Burkina Faso this summer.
The idea was just one that kinda popped in my head after reading the book Christian Atheist. In one chapter, the author, Craig Groeschel, encourages the reader to be the church for others by reaching out to them. The one way I felt I could reach out is by using my baking and generosity skills to organize a bake sale.
And so that’s what I did. With the approval and encouragement from the church staff, I have been working on organizing this bake sale. The sale is set to be held next Sunday, May 20th, in between the church services and afterwards.
But these little goodies were what I handed out this past Sunday.
I thought it would be a good idea to tempt people’s tastebuds so that they wouldn’t forget about the upcoming sale. The people seemed to think it was a good idea, too.
Tiffany was my partner in crime. She helped me with the announcement during the service, which was a play on the woes of cooking with a toddler. (If you are interested in downloading the file for our script for your own announcement, you can find it here.) And she helped me pass out the goodies.
To make these little squares, I made two 9 x 13 pans, one of brownies and one of blondies. Then, I cut them into small squares, 108 squares each to be exact (9 rows by 12 columns). That seemed to be the perfect sized bite. But I guess not everyone agreed since they kept coming back for seconds or thirds. (Tsk, tsk) 🙂
I made the flags out of toothpicks and address labels that I got for free (after rebate) at Staples. (If you don’t jump on Staples rebate deals, you really should. You can score some awesome office supplies for free, because I always get my check in a timely fashion.) If you are interested in checking out the template, you can get it here.
Now before I get to these two delicious recipes, I realize that a lot of our readers are not going to be able to support this sale due to location, but I don’t want you to forget to support the missionaries that are readily accessible to you either through your church or friends. Did you know that missionary families that are based in the US but are living overseas are getting a much smaller discount this year for taxes? This means that they are going to have to pay more than anticipated out of pocket, and with only the limited funds from what we give, this is a big burden on some families. So, would you consider giving a missionary family a little extra this month? It doesn’t have to be much to make a big impact. So when you eat one of the delicious brownies or blondies, think about how much you would be willing to pay for that treat. And then send that amount to a missionary overseas. It’s that easy!
So here are the recipes so you can get to baking and then get to eating then get to giving!
The Baked Brownie
as seen on Divine Baking
Baked Note: A great brownie is easy to make, but you have to be aware of several factors. 1. Use a dark cocoa powder, like Valrhona. A pale, light-colored cocoa does not have enough depth. 2. Make sure your eggs are room temperature and do not overbeat them into the batter, and 3. Make sure you check your brownies often while baking. Once the brownies have been overbaked slightly, they have reached the point of no return.
1 1/4 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
2 Tablespoons dark cocoa powder
11 ounces quality dark chocolate (60-72%), chopped coarsely
8 ounces butter (2 sticks), cut into 1 inch cubes
1 tsp instant espresso powder (I left it out)
1 ½ cups sugar
½ cup light brown sugar
5 large eggs, room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Butter the sides and bottom of a glass or light colored metal pan 9x13x2 pan.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, the salt, and cocoa powder.
Configure a large sized double boiler. Place the chocolate, the butter, and the instant espresso powder in the bowl of the double boiler and stir occasionally until the chocolate and butter are completely melted and combined. Turn off the heat, but keep the bowl over the water of the double boiler and add both sugars. Whisk the sugars until completely combined and remove the bowl from the pan. Mixture should be room temperature. (I actually did this melting the chocolate and butter in the microwave in 30 second spurts, and then whisking in the sugars, beating it for a full minute by hand to combine.)
Add three eggs to the chocolate/butter mixture and whisk until just combined. Add the remaining eggs and whisk until just combined. Add the vanilla and stir until combined. Do not over beat the batter at this stage or your brownies will be cakey.
Sprinkle the flour/cocoa/salt mix over the chocolate. Using a spatula (DO NOT USE A WHISK) fold the dry into the wet until there is just a trace amount of the flour/cocoa mix visible.
Pour the mixture into the pan and smooth the top with your spatula. Bake the brownies for 30 minutes (rotate the pan half-way through baking) and check to make sure the brownies are completely done by sticking a toothpick into the center of the pan. The brownies are done when the toothpick comes out with a few moist crumbs.
Cool the brownies completely before cutting and serving.
vegetable oil spray or unsalted butter, to coat the pan
1 tablespoon all purpose flour, to coat the pan (I used Baker’s Joy spray instead of the regular spray and flour)
1 1/2 cup (3 sticks) unsalted butter or unsalted browned butter
3 cups packed dark brown sugar
3 large eggs, lightly beaten
3 teaspoons vanilla
3 cups all-purpose flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
Line an 9 x 13 inch baking pan with two crisscrossing strips of foil (I only used one), shiny side down. Coat the foil lightly with vegetable spray or softened butter and sprinkle on the flour. Tap the pan from side to side to evenly coat with flour and then tap out any excess (or use Baker’s Joy).
In a 2-cup glass measuring cup, melt the butter in the microwave. Pour into a large mixing bowl and add the brown sugar.
Cool the mixture until just warm but not hot. Stir in the beaten eggs and vanilla.
Over the top of the batter, sift the flour, baking powder and salt. Combine well.
Spread batter evenly into the prepared baking pan.
Bake at 350 degrees F for about 35 minutes, until the top of the cookies is set and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with a few moist, but not gooey crumbs. With these cookies, it is better to err on the side of under done than over done.
Cool on a wire rack, and then lift the blondies out of the pan using the edges of the foil.
Cut with a knife into squares.
What are you doing to support your missionaries this month?
Linked up on Totally Tasty Tuesdays and Sweet Treats and Swanky Stuff.