Friday, April 5, 2013

Chocolate Brownies with Chocolate Glaze or Nobody Doesn't like Sara Lee

Chocolate Fudge Brownies with Chocolate Glaze

 Growing up my mantra might have been "Nobody doesn't like Sara Lee!". If you know the jingle from  their television commercials I apologize for this being stuck in your head for the rest of the day. And even if you don't know the jingle I hope you know Sara Lee. Sara Lee was cheesecakes with cherries and graham cracker crusts all in a foil pan and a cardboard top. For all I know they still may make those, but I know what they don't make. They don't make their chocolate fudge brownies any more. And that is sad. Very, very sad.

Sara Lee's chocolate fudge brownies were one thing we always looked forward to when my parents went out for the evening or the weekend or on vacation. That and Gino's pizza rolls. And maybe a few Swanson TV dinners. But back to brownies. I don't ever remember my mother baking brownies. She did bake chocolate chip cookies. She made a Heath Bar cake. I remember a few bundt cakes and apple pies but I don't remember brownies. And I love brownies.

 I prefer fudgy brownies over cake brownies. I don't like mixes but one day I'll tell you my secret for mixes which comes in handy if you need a pan of brownies at the last minute for a school function. Though they involve a mix they are truly decadent. But other than those I stay away from mixes. Just because I can, I guess. However, I've always been on a search for something similar to Sara Lee. 

There was always something special about the cold brownies straight from the freezer. We would thaw them just a bit while getting ready to savor our first bite.  One bite through the thick chocolate glaze and then deeper into the fudgey brownie insides laden with tiny walnut chunks would send a child to heaven. But what really sent me over the top was our baby sitter's treatment of the brownies. No joke. I still remember the time she cut the 8' foil pan of iced fudgy brownies into 4 pieces. One for her and three for us kids. She was very clearly not my mother. My mother would cut us pieces that were 1 inch squares. We loved our babysitter. And she rewarded us with treasure in the form of  fudgey brownies.



Not long ago I came across this recipe from a site I read, Creative Culinary. Barb does a lot of alcoholic beverages which are fun to read about (though I'd be happier drinking them) and also a variety of other dishes. This brownie was one that featured pinot noir and though that sounded great, what caught my eye was the way the brownie looked. It looked like I remember Sara Lee brownies looking like. And for that alone I say, THANK YOU BARB! (Soon, I'm going to meet Barb and I can't wait. I've never personally met another blogger before. Oooh, my heart is pounding with anticipation!)

So to make a long story short I made the brownies. AND they are about as close to SARA LEE as I think I'm ever going to find. I didn't use the red wine but I did use milk the first time and coffee the second. Truthfully, I couldn't tell the difference. If you need a simple but decadent brownie this is it. And I know no one ever needs a brownie but sometimes your day goes a bit better with one. That's all I'm sayin'. Nobody doesn't like Sara Lee.

So I could type out this recipe but I really think you should just click HERE and go see it at Barb's site-Creative Culinary. Her pictures are much better than mine and well, it's always good to pass the love along. And I promise these are brownies you are going to love!

I promise these are 2" pieces!

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24 comments:

  1. Sara Lee baked goods were always a special treat for us, too! I will check out Barb's recipe...one cannot have too many brownie recipes :)

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  2. These fudge brownies look so good that I want to bake a batch myself too. Off to check the recipe. Thanks, Abbe, for sharing.
    I wish you a great weekened!
    Angie

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  3. Barb does good stuff - I know her only from her blog, but we somehow determined we actually went to the same high school! (She's originally from St. Louis, where I lived at that time, and returned to a few years ago.) Anyway, Sara Lee may still make their brownies, but sell them only to restaurants and such - I'm under the impression, perhaps incorrect, that they still have a wholesale-only business going. Anyway, great stories and great brownies. Love the milk bottle in your pictures!

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  4. Small world, isn't it? Well, it will be fun to meet her! I don't know much about Sara Lee but there brownies stuck with me! So to speak... I'm taking a photography class online for better photos in 30 days. So far I'm not sure what I'm learning but hopefully you will see some results!Just wish I knew how to use the camera!

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  5. When I first moved here, there was a Sara Lee "outlet" store but a few blocks away. I was there more than a few times but all good things must come to an end. About 2 years later, a "We're Closing" sign was hung on the door and that was that. I should make these brownies as a tribute to a beautiful relationship that ended far too early. :)

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  6. I think it was when I was a newlywed that the cheesecake came out. But whenever, my husband and I ate at least two per week. They were so creamy and delicious. Never had the brownies! But I'll take your word that they are great.

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  7. Kankakee never had an outlet, we just went to the grocery. You should make these to go with your ham sandwiches and split pea soup!

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  8. Ronnie, isn't it funny? I remember the cheesecake as great but I really remember the brownies!

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  9. I definitely want to try the recipe, i agree with you, fudgey brownies are so much better!

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  10. Julia, they are different than many brownies I've had but because they are chilled it makes the brownie very dense and chewey. Let me know what you think!

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  11. Oh...where have I been? I don't think I've ever tried Sara Lee's chocolate brownies! I only know about their pound cakes. Hm...glad I got this now. Can't wait to try them.

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  12. You are right. They do have good pound cake. I forgot about that!But the brownies are different than any other brownie I've had!

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  13. I love homemade brownies - I'm sure that yours are much more delicious that the Sara Lee ones!

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  14. Thanks Amy. Bur really Sara Lee's were pretty darn good especially when that was the only way to get a brownie!

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  15. Hey Amy! Thanks - I am now singing that song for the rest of the day! Love brownies and these are beautiful. Heading over now to check out the recipe. Thanks

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  16. Good deal Tricia! And I'm sorry but that song does have a way of sticking with you! You will love these brownies!

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  17. Those look incredible! Fudgy is always better than cakey!

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  18. Chocolate on top of chocolate?! I'm so there.

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  19. How did I miss this Abbe? They are lively brownies aren't they?

    Now we have met...time for coffee soon?

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  20. Well I have dreamed about Sarah Lee's Brownies forever, totally missed them.
    Tell my kids you have not had a real Chocolate Brownie until you had Sarah Lee's.
    Even my husband hadn't never had it, and I felt like he had really missed out lol.
    It was by chance I typed into google praying for something like the Sarah Lee's Brownies from you childhood days (now I am making myself feel old).
    Found this blog and recipe and got so excited, and actually started to squeal like a child who had just seen a carnival for the first time.
    Now Abbe, being a .au blog, am I right to assume you are in Australia?
    Oh gosh I hope so, because I would really like to know what you used for the 'Gjirardelli Sweet Ground Cocoa'.
    I am really looking forward to making this, and showing my family what they missed out on!

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  21. Lovely post about something I also remember fondly from my childhood. My post about these delights is here: https://playingintheworldgame.wordpress.com/2013/07/17/sara-lee-all-butter-brownies/ - I also had stumbled across the Pinot Noir recipe but included a different one which also comes very close. I pester Sara Lee a couple of times a year, hoping that they'll get tired of me and just bring them back. My post also includes a link to a Foodservice Direct website where Sara Lee brownies are offered in industrial quantities; I have yet to try any from that source. Thanks for posting this.

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    1. I did check their site a long time ago, but with my diet I best stay away from industrial quantities! Keep pestering! And thanks for writing!

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