Peanut Butter Brownie Bites

The weather has dropped considerably this last week and it now truly feels like fall. To celebrate, Lee and I made some fall inspired treats to snack on: Peanut Butter Brownie Bites.

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The recipe is quite simple, we use boxed brownie mix with the ingredients called for on the box. In our case it was water (which we replaced with equal amount milk), eggs and oil (which we replaced with equal amounts of applesauce). No one can tell the difference between the milk/applesauce combo versus the water/oil combo aside from the extra moistness. I love finding healthier alternatives that don’t affect the texture or taste at all.

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Because we wanted these to be easy to snack on we decided to bake our brownies in mini muffins tins, sprayed with Baking Pam (not a sponsored link but have you tried this stuff? It is the best and smells absolutely delicious, like vanilla cake).

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Because the mini muffins are so much smaller than a regular square/rectangular brownie pan, your brownies will cook much faster. Be careful not to over cook them. For us, 10 minutes was plenty. You will want a toothpick inserted in the middle of your brownie bite to come out almost clean but not quite.

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We set our brownie bites aside to let them cool to room temperature while we worked on the “icing”. We decided on a peanut butter icing and after looking at many many recipes online with varied ingredients/measurements, we came up with our own:

  • 2-1/4 cups of icing sugar
  • 1/2 cup of peanut butter
  • 3 TBSP of butter
  • 3 TBSP of milk

Simply mix all the ingredients together until uniform. We decided to use a disposable piping bag with a Wilton #10 tip to decorate our brownie bites with the peanut butter icing. the measurements above gave us enough icing for our 36 brownie bites as well as a little extra which we ate spread over apple slices.

Of course, we couldn’t resist topping them up with a single Reese’s pieces to add to the fall-ish/halloween-ish look.

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Peanut butter and chocolate, you can’t go wrong!

AudreeLeeBlog - Peanut Butter Brownie Bites 06Would these be the perfect treat to serve at a Halloween or fall themed party?

Crochet “Bucket” List

As we approach the end of the minion blanket (you can read more about it here and here), I can’t help but think about which project will be on my hook next. If I’m being honest, there’s a few times I almost put the minion blanket down and started another project, luckily Lee is doing a great job at keeping me focused and getting me to finish it before starting another project which is easier said than done.

That being said, I constantly have a list of future projects in my head, some for myself, some for the house and some for gifting as Christmas presents. So I thought it might be fun to make a crochet bucket list of sorts with all those patterns I’m dying to work on in the coming months.

01 Delia Creates - Crochet Shawl Scarf

Crochet Shawl Scarf from Delia Crates

02 All About Ami - Long Double Crochet Cowl

Long Double Crochet Cowl from All About Ami

03 Delia Creates - Crochet Leather Snap Scarf

Crochet Leather Snap Scarf from Delia Creates

04 All About Ami - Easy Ribbed Pom Pom Beanie

Easy Ribbed Pom Pom Beanie from All About Ami

05 Maira Valles - Granny Cocoon Shrug

Granny Cocoon Shrug by Maria Valles

06 All About Ami - Cozy Crochet Mittens

Cozy Crochet Mittens from All About Ami (I actually started those last winter but never got around to finishing them).

07 The Painted Hinge - Fall Leaves

Fall Leaves from The Painted Hinge

08 Eilen Tein - Cat Nest

Cat Nest from Eilen Tein

09 The Sweeter Side of Mommyhood - Chunky Crochet Blanket

Chunky Crochet Blanket from The Sweeter Side of Mommyhood

10 The Stichin' Mommy - Stuffy the Christmas Penguin

Stuffy the Christmas Penguin from The Stitchin’ Mommy

What’s even better is that all the above mentioned pattern are free patterns except for the Chunky Crochet Blanket.

I also have a few ideas in mind which don’t have set patterns, I may just give them a go and see if I can come up with a pattern myself. I will share them here if they turn out good.

Now, I’m not saying all these projects will make it to my hook (or that they will all get completed) but those are the ones I have in mind for now.

What projects are on your crochet list? Which ones are you currently working on?

Pumpkins, squashes and gourds

On Saturday morning, we woke up a little extra early so we would have time to go pumpkin, squash and gourd picking before Lee had to leave for work. The weather was perfect, a cold-ish wind with a warm sunshine and bright blue skies.

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We decided to try Courges & cie, a local farm here in Gatineau, Québec which grows over 100 varieties of pumpkins, squashes and gourds.

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Upon arriving, you are instructed to grab a wheelbarrow and head into the field to pick your own produce. A main path separates the field in two, pumpkins on the left and squashes and gourds on the right. The further you venture into the field, the more species of pumpkins, squashes and gourds you encounter.

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We saw all kinds of pumpkins; even pink ones!

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We found some funny shaped squashes…

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Some cute tiny pumpkins…

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And some ugly gourds full of warts.

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Once you’re satisfied with your pickings, you are invited to wheel you wheel barrow directly onto a big scale. No need for unloading and reloading everything here, they simply subtract the weight of the wheel barrow to get the proper weight as you pay for your products by the pound. Based on previous experiences at other pumpkin patches in the area, we were expecting to pay about 40$ maybe even 60$ for our small haul, but where happily surprised with our total of 15$.

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We wheeled our pickings to the car and unloaded them. As we walked our wheel barrow back, we decided to stop by the dome under which are the already picked produce that you can buy directly if you don’t want to go into the field and pick your own.

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The little signs above each variety, gave important information such as the name, color, flesh, taste, usage and conservation details. We had fun identifying our pickings and discovering new varieties that we didn’t venture far enough to see in the field.

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From what we can tell, we selected, a spaghetti squash, a butternut squash, one jack be little pumpkin, two baby boo pumpkins, either a blue doll or a jarrahdale pumpkin (the blueish/gray one) and a few non-comestible gourds. We didn’t identify the exact variety of our orange pumpkin, our bigger white pumpkin or the yellow/green/orange squash we picked.

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Outside, gorgeous wooden bins filled to the brim with various kinds of pumpkins, squashes and gourds. So many interesting colors and shapes.

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They even had corn stalks for sale!

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Before leaving we decided to order the squash-fries and the pumpkin doughnuts everyone was raving about and we were not disappointed. The “fries” are really deep-fried delicata squash and are delicious with a little salt sprinkled on top. The donuts were simply out of this world and it was pretty neat to see them being made right in front of us as well.

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All and all, we had an amazing time together at the Courges & Cie farm and we will definitely be back, though next time, we will bring proper footwear (a.k.a. rain boots) as our shoes got quite muddy walking in the field.

How did you kick off the start of your holiday long weekend?  Have you been pumpkin, squash or gourd picking yet?

Kent Street Bagel Cat Toy

A few weekends ago I decided to put down the Minion Blanket and take a few moments to make a quick project for the kitties before jumping back into the solid granny square madness (read more about the minion blanket progress here and here).

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I subscribe to the Lion Brand emails, every few days, they send me an email with new patterns, stories, etc. On that particular Saturday, the email contained patterns for pets, and I thought our cats would love the Kent Street Bagel Cat Toy.

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I grabbed some yarn from my stash (Loops and Thread – Impeccable in Aqua to be exact) and got to work. Within about an hour I had a completed bagel, stuffed with poly-fiber and cat nip.

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It was my first time stuffing a crochet item, so it was a let’s-try-and-see-how-it-turns-out type of project. If I had to do it again, I would either try to make my stitches tighter or would choose a smaller hook.  I would also add more cat nip, I had no idea of the proper amount to put so I only sprinkled a little, but the cats seem to think more would have been better (;

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Do you have any tips for stuffing crochet items neatly? Have you ever made a crochet pet toy?

Happy October

Happy first day of October! Lee and I have been working hard on various projects at once for the house, we can’t wait to share them with you, so while we are busy behind-the-scenes, I thought I would simply stop by to wish everyone a happy October.

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And also to share this October doodle I had fun doing (remember the September one?). I think this might just become a monthly thing. I’m having so much fun doodling them.

What are you doodling these days?