Posted by: Stephlechef | December 17, 2011

Santa hat brownies

I have seen these/variations of these floating around on Tastespotting for a few weeks now, and they are too cute not to make… also very easy. I won’t include the budget, as I am ashamed to say I spent £3 on a punnet of December strawberries. If anyone can think of something that looks similarly Santa-hat-ty, please let me know! (Edit- sudden brainwave- you could also make very tiny versions of this using this strawberry-shaped Haribo sweet http://www.mamie-dine.com/images/HARIBO%20FRAISES%20copier.jpg)

Santa hat brownies (makes about 6)

(Idea stolen from various people on Tastespotting, recipe for brownie adapted from Allrecipes)

Brownies:

100g caster sugar

60g butter, melted

20g cocoa powder

drop vanilla extract

1 egg

50g plain flour

pinch baking powder

pinch of salt

15g chopped walnuts

Mix all the ingredients together and pour into a small cake tin, or I used a loaf tin as the base was about the right size.

Cook at 180c for about 15-20 minutes or until the brownie is done but still squidgy in the middle (I always overcook brownie. Also, mine always rises ridiculously and we want a nice flat brownie, so when you get it out of the tin, attack (press) it with a spatula and make it nice and flat :))

Leave to cool.

For the cream:

You only really need double cream, which you can whip up and add a drop of vanilla. However, I (my mum) had leftover mascarpone, so I beat that in with some double cream and a tiny bit of butter, and this made a lovely rich, thick cream which was good for piping. I also used vanilla pods. Apparently I was feeling flush that day. A tip if you’ve got a bit of leftover vanilla pod – wrap it loosely in a plastic bag and keep it in the fridge until you need it. It works as a gorgeous air freshener for the fridge 🙂

To assemble:

Cut the tops off the strawberries so that they lay flat on their “heads”.

Cut out circles of brownie to about 1/2 cm larger all around than the widest part of the strawberry. (If you don’t have a cutter that’s the right size, this becomes a fun/frustrating hunt around the kitchen for a suitable implement. I used a (cheap) champagne flute) Don’t throw away the scraps of brownie, I have a recipe for them coming up! Or just eat them.

Pipe/spread a layer of cream all over the top of each piece of brownie. Stand a strawberry on top of each one. Pipe/dollop a bit of cream on the top, et voila! Santa hat brownies. Keep them in the fridge so they don’t collapse… if they last that long!

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