Brownies are the word of the day. I have this thing, that I can't make brownies. My kids will say the same thing. Can't do it. I can make many things more complicated, but not brownies. But here's a recipe from author of Aries Rising, Bonnie Hearn Hill. And she's giving away a copy of her book to one lucky commenter.
STAR CROSSED BROWNIES
1 8-oz. package cream cheese
½ cup sugar
1/8 tsp. salt
1 6 oz pkg. of the best chocolate chips you can find
1 ½ cup unsifted flour
¼ cup unsweetened cocoa
½ tsp. salt
½ cup oil
1 cup sugar
1 tsp. baking soda
1 cup water
1 Tbs. vinegar
Blend cream cheese, sugar, egg and salt. Beat until well blended. Then add chocolate chips. Set aside.
Blend together flour, cocoa, salt, oil, sugar, vanilla, baking soda, water and vinegar. Batter will be thin, but don’t panic. It’s supposed to be. Pour into greased 8-inch square pan.
Add first mixture in spoonfuls and swirl through batter with knife. Bake 50-60 min at 350. Cool for two hours, then cut into squares. These babies are dense, and they need time to settle.
In ARIES RISING, these are the brownies Logan gives her cranky, food-loving Taurus English teacher, Mr. Franklin (Frankenstein).
First of the Star Crossed Series from Running Press/Perseus Books
When Terra Bella Beach student Logan McRae discovers Fearless Astrology, all she wants is to win a writing fellowship for the summer to Monterey, and maybe catch the interest of Nathan, the senior she’s kissed only once. He seems more interested in Geneva, the tall, blond Libra editor of the school newspaper—until Logan uses some Leo-pleasing flattery on him. Nathan seems to be coming around, but Logan still has to convince Mr. Franklin, her gruff Taurus English teacher, that she deserves the fellowship.
Frankenstein says she doesn’t put enough of herself in her writing. She tries to appeal to him with homemade brownies. That falls flat, but her opportunity presents itself when the Gears, a group of boys causing mischief at school, streaks her friend Chili’s backyard while Logan, Chili, and Paige, are in the spa.
The Gears also paint nasty things about the Capricorn journalism teacher, Ms. Snider, on the wall at school. Logan decides to identify them using astrology. Frankenstein is intrigued.
Logan is Aquarius with a Pisces Moon. Pretty mellow, but her Aires Rising gives her some Fire. She decides to put it to work to get what she wants. With the fellowship—and Nathan—hanging in the balance, she resolves to trap the Gears on the night she is certain that they will strike again. It is a risky scheme that involves Calypso, a dress mannequin that the girls have dressed up to resemble Logan.
What Logan has failed to see in the stars is someone with a more deadly motive. Then suddenly, the stakes increase, and there’s more at risk than any of the threats by the Gears.