Daryl Wood Gerber: Double-chocolate Caramel Brownies
From A Flicker of a Doubt, the 4th Fairy Garden Mystery
Do you love chocolate? Of course you do! That’s why you read this blog. Do you also like baking that’s easy? If so, I have a super easy recipe to share with you. I included it in my upcoming Fairy Garden Mystery, A FLICKER OF A DOUBT.
Wait, what? You don’t know what a fairy garden is? Think of it as doll-housing for miniature gardens. You can plant fairy gardens in pots, under trees, inside your house. There’s no set rule. They’re simply fun to make, and they open the possibility to invite magic into your life! The series is set in Carmel-by-the-Sea, California and features a fairy garden shop owner, Courtney Kelly and her fairy sidekick, Fiona. Courtney owns Open Your Imagination.
On Saturdays at Open Your Imagination, they serve tea in the afternoon on the outdoor patio. What could be more magical than a bubbling fountain, twinkling lights in the ficus trees, and a real live fairy readily at hand. Sometimes a harpist plays. The harpist happens to be Courtney’s good friend Meaghan Brownie. Meaghan owns Flair Art Gallery, which is located in the same courtyard as Open Your Imagination, and because of her surname, she has made brownies all her life. She’s always eager to try out new recipes. However, she is aware that some people don’t like to work too hard in the kitchen when making something delicious.
So . . . she came up with this recipe, and it’s easy-peasy.
Enjoy and fairy best wishes to you all!
Double-Chocolate Caramel Brownies
1 Devil’s food cake mix (may be gluten-free version)
⅓ cup evaporated milk
¾ cup melted butter, (1 ½ sticks)
1 (12-ounce) package caramel bits
¾ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
⅓ cup evaporated milk, additional
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9x13” baking dish with non-stick cooking spray. Set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, whisk together cake mix, eggs, ⅓ cup evaporated milk, and ¾ cup melted butter until smooth. Spread half of the batter into the prepared 9x13 pan.
Bake for 8 minutes.
In a saucepan over medium heat, melt ⅓ cup evaporated milk with the contents of a package of caramel bits. Stir until smooth.
When you take the brownies out of the oven, spread the melted caramel over the top. Pouring from the saucepan is the best way to do this. Then sprinkle chocolate chips over the top.
Top with remaining batter. Because it’s all warm, this will need to be done carefully. Spread gingerly.
Bake for 20 minutes more. Remove from oven and cool completely, at least 20 minutes. Brownies are easier to cut when cooled.
A FLICKER OF A DOUBT: What’s it about?
With a theater foundation tea and an art show planned at Violet Vickers’s estate, Courtney is hired to create charming fairy gardens for the event. It’s not so charming, however, when her best friend Meaghan’s ex-boyfriend turns out to be Violet’s latest artistic protégé. Even worse, not long after Meaghan locks horns with him, his body is found in her yard, bludgeoned with an objet d’murder.
There’s a gallery of suspects, from an unstable former flame to an arts and crafts teacher with a sketchy past. But when the cops focus on Meaghan’s business partner, who’s like a protective older brother to her, and discover he also has a secret financial motive, Courtney decides to draw her own conclusions. Fearing they’re missing the forest for the trees, and with some help from Fiona the sleuthing fairy, she hopes to make them see the light . . .
“Plenty of suspects, gardening tips, and fairy lore combine for a sweet treat.” ~ Kirkus Reviews
Agatha Award-winning author Daryl Wood Gerber is best known for her nationally bestselling mysteries, including the Fairy Garden Mysteries, Cookbook Nook Mysteries, and French Bistro Mysteries. As Avery Aames, she penned the popular Cheese Shop Mysteries. In addition, Daryl writes suspense novels and short stories. Fun Tidbit: as an actress, Daryl appeared in “Murder, She Wrote.” She loves to cook, fairy garden, and read. She has a frisky Goldendoodle who keeps her in line. And she has been known to jump out of a perfectly good airplane. You can learn more on her website: https://darylwoodgerber.com