Sweet Treats

Stout Brownies


Instead of the usual artificially-colored-green treats for St. Patrick’s Day, try whipping up these fantastic, easy stout brownies from scratch. Inspired by a recipe from Bon Appétit magazine, this brownie recipe’s secret ingredient is a St. Patrick’s Day must-have, a rich dark stout beer (I prefer Guinness but you could use anything you like.) The secret: reducing the Guinness on the stovetop until its flavors are concentrated. As a result, these brownies are rich, decadent, and gooey. The glaze is definitely gilding the lily, but why not?

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Main Dish

Frogmore Stew
Small-Scale Low Country Boil

For as long as I can remember, my family has vacationed on the white-sand beaches of Fort Morgan, Alabama. The little beach cottage, affectionately dubbed Déjà Vu and destroyed by hurricanes and subsequently rebuilt, has been in my family since the late 70s. In 1988, we celebrated my grandparents’ 50th wedding anniversary in that house, crammed in like happy sardines in the front room. In 2002, my parents bought the house from my uncle and aunt, who built a gorgeous house on the lot next door. In 2006, I hosted my bridal party at the cottage before heading to our nuptials in Natchez, MS (ten years to the day this Friday). It’s safe to say that this house, and its surrounding coastline, has more sentimental significance to me than most of the things in my own home (people excluded, of course). Most people don’t realize that Alabama has a coastline, (and that’s fine–it’s crowded enough) but with the Hangout Festival held annually in Gulf Shores, our little “Redneck Riviera” is getting more and more popular, evidenced by the gobsmacking Saturday summer traffic on Highway 59.  Continue Reading