Autumn Apple Brownies

I hope your family is enjoying the spectacular skies and colorful leaves of this autumn season. I recall seeing the first bright red leaves appear in late August, and now, those same trees have many empty branches.

While pumpkins are everywhere, I’m still holding on to apple season! This is a very simple, quick brownie recipe that can be prepared in 15 minutes, with a bake time around 30 minutes. The bonus is that there is no need to use beaters! I’m all about quick clean up!

Ingredients:

    1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar

    ½ cup melted butter

    1 egg

    2 teaspoons vanilla extract

    1 cup flour

    1 ¾ teaspoons baking powder

    ½ cup toffee chips (I use Heath)

    1 ½ cups peeled and diced apples of your choice     

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350º.  Stir together brown sugar, butter, egg and vanilla.  Add flour and baking powder, mixing ingredients well. Stir in apples and toffee chips.  Spread batter into a greased and floured 8×8 inch pan.

Bake at 350º for 30-35 minutes or until a knife or toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Completely cool before cutting.

Tips: *Substitute chopped nuts for the Heath toffee bits, if desired. *Double recipe for a 13×9 pan.

Easy, Delicious Cracker Bark!

ToffeeBarkMy family never tires of good, old-fashioned cracker bark! This recipe is easy and is always a hit at summer picnics!

Ingredients:

1 sleeve or Saltine crackers – Club crackers may be used

1 package (12 oz.) semi-sweet chocolate chips

2 sticks butter

1/2 cup brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts – Heath toffee chips may be substituted for the walnuts

Kosher salt (optional)

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Line a large cookie sheet with parchment paper or foil.  Place crackers on the sheet in a single layer.  Break up the crackers where necessary to fit the size cookie sheet you are using.  In a saucepan, melt the butter, mixing in the brown sugar.  Add baking soda and stir.

Pour the mixture over crackers and spread evenly.  Bake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes.  Remove from the oven and sprinkle the chocolate chips over the crackers.  Place cookie sheet back into the oven for a few minutes to soften the chocolate chips.  Remove from the oven and spread the melted chocolate chips evenly over the crackers.  Sprinkle the walnuts over the warm chocolate.  If desired, sprinkle a small amount of Kosher salt over the chocolate. 

Place in the refrigerator to set the cracker bark.  I have placed it in the freezer as well to speed up the firming process.  When cooled, break or cut the bark into pieces and place on a platter.  Cracker Bark