TAG’s Monthsary & SSS Brownies (non-recipe)

Happy, happy 4th monthsary to TAG! 

:D :D :D

We are very sorry for not having done a 3rd monthsary post last month but we were both busy! Further apologies for the first ever non-recipe to make it on the blog but I have a very good reason, I promise.

My beautiful friend, M, came to visit today, bearing some rather terrible news. I don’t know if it’s because January is a difficult time for all of us – perhaps because, a few weeks into the new year, we realise that it’s not going to be all that different from the last – but I know that many of you are not having the best of times either, so in a way, these SSS Brownies are dedicated to all of you!

I may as well confess that I’ve never made brownies from a boxed mix before. Making them from scratch is just far too easy and far too fun for me ever to succumb to the temptation of using a boxed mix. I may have also mentioned before that I am incredibly fussy about brownies. Like, really fussy. And so, over the years, I’ve probably tried and tested over 50 different recipes, hoarded about 1000 more, and consumed many times my own body weight in rich, chocolatey goodness. So today, when I told M that I wanted to make us some brownies, she suggested that I finally try a boxed mix, and that was how I popped my boxed mix cherry.

Hence the reason why this post is a non-recipe.

I decided to try the ubiquitous, most widely-available brand. I don’t want to get sued so I shan’t tell you explicitly what it was, but it’s not that difficult to find out, I promise. Hint: Her first name is the same as that strange woman who bought a bit of better butter and put it in her bitter batter…

 

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The mix actually smelt surprisingly good. Kind of like hot cocoa mix. Almost promising.

 

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You literally just add 1 egg, some vegetable oil and some water, and mix. All in a minute’s work. It baffles me that the preparation time stated on the box is “10 minutes”. Hmmm… Still wondering if I should be worried? 

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Bake at 160°C for 20-25minutes. And it should look really pretty.

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Look at that! Full of promise!

Once cooled, I melted some white chocolate, tinted it pink (M‘s favorite color), and got busy piping.

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Strong, safe, sane.

I may as well tell you now. These were the worst brownies I have ever had. I thought I’ve had bad brownies before but these were so ridiculously bad that I couldn’t stop laughing for a whole minute. They tasted almost synthetic, without so much as a smidgen of chocolate in them. 

After M and I were done laughing – if nothing else, at least these brownies put a smile on her face – I threw the brownies out, made a fresh batch from scratch with pistachios, and we flopped around popping Charbonnel sea salt caramel truffles while waiting for them to be done.

Now, what’s a brownie post without some foodpornographic pictures of fudgy brownie innards? I know that’s what you’re here for, so while I did not feel the boxed mix brownies even deserved a picture to be snapped of their insides, here are a few pictures from other happier times just to keep the masses happy. A flower will keep the missus happy but a brownie will keep the masses happy. True story.

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This was a 24K brownie (essentially a brownie painted gold – such fun!) I had while back home over Christmas. There’s a funny story behind this brownie. Every so often I am overcome with intense brownie cravings, and one time it hit me particularly badly, and I ended up spending the better part of a week bugging my sister with chants of, ‘You want a fudgy brownie?’, to the tune of Brit-Brit’s Work Bitch no less. I was too lazy to make my own, and too much of a brat to let mom make me some – You don’t understand!!!!!!!!! I only want ONE brownie! ONEEEEE. And I don’t want chocolate cake! I want a brownie!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! … You get the idea. Until one day, I finally got myself some brownies – the 24K brownie pictured above, and another one with Brazil nuts and white chocolate chips. Mm…

And how did the Batch From Scratch turn out you ask?

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Why, pretty damn fine, thank you very much. I guess I should have heeded Brit-Brit’s advice. After all, if you want a fudgy brownie, you gotta work, bitch.

Or, in M‘s case, turn up on my doorstep at the crack of dawn.

Just kidding. Always happy to play doctor and deliver some sugargical intervention to help a friend achieve a very different kind of bodily integrity hahaha. Please pardon the terrible puns. Studying Medical Ethics will do that to you.

But anyway, while I will NEVER touch a boxed mix again (although N has told me before that Ghiradelli does an amazing one, so I maaaay try that at some point), the message remains: stay strong, stay safe, and stay sane.

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And finally, thank you one and all, once again, for visiting this humble space. Please keep up the amazing support! The TAG team thanks you for the bottom of our hearts! :’)

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