If you use yellow coloured Candy Melts, of course you'll get a better likeness to little chicks. I was too lazy to dirty another bowl so I used the white coloured Candy Melts left over from the Bunnies. this chick's Canadian! notice the little orange maple leaf feet?
from Alice Medrich's Bittersweet
10 tablespoons (1 1/4 sticks) unsalted butter
1 1/4 cups sugar
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder (natural or Dutch-process)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 cold large eggs
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
2/3 cup walnut or pecan pieces (optional)
Special equipment: An 8-inch square baking pan [cakebrained note: I used a Wilton Brownie pop mold...you'll need two trays otherwise you'll have to wait for the first batch to bake and cool].
- Position a rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat the oven to 325°F. Line the bottom and sides of the baking pan with parchment paper or foil, leaving an overhang on two opposite sides.
- In a medium heatproof bowl, add the butter and set on top of a large sauce pan with barely simmering water. Melt the butter, then add sugar and salt, and stir until well combined. Next add the cocoa powder and stir until mixture is smooth and hot enough that you want to remove your finger fairly quickly after dipping it in to test. Remove the bowl from the skillet and set aside briefly until the mixture is only warm, not hot.
- Stir in the vanilla with a wooden spoon. Add the eggs one at a time, stirring vigorously after each one. When the batter looks thick, shiny, and well blended, add the flour and stir until you cannot see it any longer, then beat vigorously for 40 strokes with the wooden spoon or a rubber spatula. Stir in the nuts, if using. Spread evenly in the lined pan.
- Bake until a toothpick plunged into the center emerges slightly moist with batter, 20 to 25 minutes. Let cool completely on a rack.
- Lift up the ends of the parchment or foil liner, and transfer the brownies to a cutting board. Cut into 16 or 25 squares.
- Chocolate note: Any unsweetened natural or Dutch-process cocoa powder works well here. Natural cocoa produces brownies with more flavor complexity and lots of tart, fruity notes, which maybe more exciting for you. Dutch-process cocoa results in a darker brownie with a mellower, old-fashioned chocolate pudding flavor, pleasantly reminiscent of childhood.
Makes 16 large or 25 smaller brownies [cakebrained note: makes 16 large brownie pops using Wilton's Brownie Pop mold; or 24 small brownie pops...I initially sprayed the molds with Pam so they wouldn't stick. The large brownie pops baked for 20-25 min]
- Turn out the cooled brownie pops from the mold by inverting onto cooling rack. Trim any extraneous bits of brownie with kitchen scissors.
- Use 4" lolly sticks and insert one end into the brownie pop. For chicks and bunnies, insert in centre of flat end of the brownie.
- Tip: I wrapped a thin piece of plastic wrap at the base of the brownie so the brownie wouldn't slide down while I dipped it.
- Dip the brownie into melted white, dark or milk chocolate or Wilton's Candy Melts.
- Decorate with sprinkles. I used the Flowerful Medley. For the bunnies I used a little pink disc sprinkle while the birdies had orange "leaves" for feet and a little yellow disc for a beak. Use white discs and colour in the eyes with a food marker. Attach the decorations before the dipped brownies harden; or you can attach with melted chocolate or melts if they are already hardened.
- I used Gourmet Writer; but Wilton also sells its own brand of FoodWriter marker pens.
- For bunny ears: use a small rubber spatula to scoop and smear bunny ears shapes on parchment paper. Allow ears to harden. Peel off. Use a sharp pointed knife to cut 2 holes into the tops of each of the dipped brownies. While the brownies are still freshly dipped, insert the hardened ears into the holes. Ears are almost impossible to attach if the dipped brownies have hardened.
- The Lollipop and Treat Stand was also a coupon purchase I made :P It's great for drying your freshly dipped treats.
- Alternatively, to harden the candy coating, you can grab your kid's playdough and insert the sticks in that...or rest them on parchment. I think the treat stand is neat but luckily I had wrapped plastic below the bases of the brownies because the lolly sticks are smaller in diameter than the holders. This way you can dry the candy coating using the treat stand without having to pry the brownies off the holders. The plastic wrap can be removed after the candy coating dries.
As you can see, I've used quite a few coupons at Michaels... ;p