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So my obsession, along with a lot most people, is Pinterest. I love scouring to find new recipes, my next outfit, or just general awesomeness. I refuse to call it “Pin-trest” like everyone else. I’m starting my own trend and I like to call it “Pin – interest”. It just makes more sense to me. I’m sticking with it. However, I have to admit when it comes to the desserts on Pinterest I’m a snob. I apologize in advance if this is offensive. But when I see something that looks good, click on the picture that takes me to a baking blog, and then the recipe is “1 box of yellow cake mix, 1 can of whip cream and 2 bananas”. That is not a recipe. I’m certainly no expert baker and there is still a lot of cheats I use (i.e. phyllo dough), but I at least pride myself in not using boxes of cake mix. It just drives me insane. Well this is what I came across when I saw a picture of a strawberry cupcake on top of a brownie (both made from boxes). It just drives me insane. But I was inspired, so I decided to make my own. These Banana Split Cupcake Brownies have a brownie base, a banana cupcake top with strawberry frosting. Have no fear, it may be slightly more work but is still quite easy.

Total Time: 1 hour                        Cook Time: 25-30 minutes

Brownie Ingredients

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) salted butter
  • 6 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup all purpose flour

Banana Cupcakes

  • 1½ cups all-purpose flour
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup (1 stick) salted butter, melted
  • 1½ cups mashed bananas (about 4 ripe bananas)
  • 2 large eggs
  • ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Strawberry Frosting

  • ½ cup whole frozen strawberries, thawed
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) salted butter, firm and slightly cold
  • Pinch of coarse salt
  • 3½ cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
  • ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • ½ cup of chopped walnuts

**I never like to admit that I agree with my mother, especially when it comes to baking (her idea of baking is putting Pillsbury cookies on a baking sheet). But she said my grandmother, an actual amazing baker, always used salted butter to add more flavor to her desserts. I have to admit I completely agree. So now I only used salted butter and my mother was right.

(1) Preheat oven to 325°F. Line a standard cupcake pan with paper liners. Starting with the brownie ingredients, melt butter and chocolate in a medium saucepan over low heat, stirring until chocolate mixture is smooth. While letting the butter and chocolate cook, beat eggs and sugar in a large bowl until light and fluffy.

 

(2) Once the chocolate and butter mixture is ready, beat the mixture into the butter and sugar with the vanilla and salt. Add the flour and beat just until blended (do not overbeat). Pour batter into cupcake tins filling till 1/3 full.** if you are looking for a good brownie recipe, follow the instructions above (same amount of ingredients) but you can add ½ cup of walnuts and stir until combined. Then add to a lightly greased 13 x 9 inch pan and cook for about 35 minutes (or until a fork/toothpick comes out clean). These brownies are pure decadence.

 

(3) Moving onto the banana cupcake ingredients, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl. Make a well in the center of the flour mixture. In the well, mix together butter, mashed bananas, eggs, and vanilla. Stir just to incorporate flour mixture (once again, DO NOT overmix). Spoon the batter on top of the brownie mixture until the cupcake liners are 2/3 full.

 

(4) Bake cupcake brownies for 25 – 30 minutes or until a fork/toothpick comes out clean (make sure you push the fork or toothpick down far enough to touch the brownie part as well). Remove from oven and make sure the cupcake brownies cool before frosting them.

 

(5) While letting the cupcake brownies cool, begin making the frosting. Place the strawberries in the bowl of a small food processor and process until completely pureed. In the bowl of an electric mixer, fitted with the paddle attachment, beat together the butter and salt on medium speed until light and fluffy. Reduce  speed and slowly add the powdered sugar. Beat until well combined. Add the vanilla and 4 tablespoons strawberry puree and mix until just blended. Do not overmix or frosting will incorporate too much air. Here’s the tough part, taste the frosting and make sure there is enough strawberry taste. If you want more add any left over puree one teaspoon at a time.

(6) Pipe or spoon the frosting over cooled cupcakes. Sprinkle chopped walnuts over the frosting if desired. If these cupcakes aren’t to be served immediately, leave the cupcake brownies unfrosted, but covered in an airtight container. Then before you serve frost them. I feel like cupcakes never taste as good in the refrigerator, but you can’t leave the frosting out all night.

 

(7) Enjoy!!

Recipe Adapted from Miss Martha Stewart

 

 

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