Gramma June's Birthday & Peanut Butter Brownies

Today my Grandma June would have celebrated her 89th birthday. Unfortunately, she went to heaven in April 2012. I was fortunate to have a close relationship with my Gram. I inherited my love of the kitchen from her I believe. As far back as I can remember, I think of her and she’s always in the kitchen. Through all the years of my growing up she fed us all….and by all I mean: hired men, hired gals, family, friends, branding crews, shipping crews, truckers, cattle buyers, horse buyers, feed salesman, bankers, etc. You name them and she probably fed them! If a person ever traveled out on Cherry Creek north of the Yellowstone River between Miles City and Terry, Montana I bet they ate something my Gram had made. She was famous for her cinnamon rolls and bread…..and her cherry tarts…..ground beef sandwiches….lemon meringue pie….crispies…..rolls…..fried chicken…..gosh, now that I think about it I can’t think of a single thing she made that we weren’t all crazy about! What a tribute to her today….thinking back about how she not only touched my life, but all of those who sat around her kitchen table…..branding fire….or where ever enjoying her cooking talents. A good friend sent me a message earlier today on Facebook that brought me to tears…once again….because I was missing her earlier today something horrible. It was a story told of eating her incredible food through friends who knew my Gram (this friend of mine never met my Gram, but she said what a neat lady she must have been)….and she was!!! Some folks might think of food as just something to eat and move on, but not my Gram. She clearly put more into it than just that. I believe there was a little bit of love and happiness in all she made. She made each meal special….and clearly that showed through because whoever knew her knew about her culinary expertise. 🙂

Here are some pics of my Gram that I’d like to share with you all. This one is a favorite of mine. I think she is somewhere around 17 years old in this picture….and to think they got that hay up there by hand!

Here’s another one of my Grandpa, Grandma, ReAnn (my cousin), and Me. I think we were about 3 in this picture:

Here is my Gram and Aunt Beryl (my Gram and she were close and married to brothers…and were neighbors). I’m in the middle:

Here is one of my favorites….Gram with her 3 grandchildren (ReAnn, Wyatt, and me):

Here is another favorite….just Gram and me:

My Gram was beautiful inside and out:

The following 2 pictures are very special to me. I remember her with Stone. She would light up so much whenever her great-grandchildren were around her!

You can see how special she was to me…..to all of us. I miss her so much and think of her often. I always feel close to her when I’m in the kitchen, which is probably why I’ve gravitated towards cooking/baking so much these last 10 years of my life. I truly find enjoyment in the entire process….I think I inherited a bit of my Gram. 🙂

Today, in my Gram’s honor, I decided to bake something. I’ve had a hankering for some peanut butter brownies. I don’t know about you, but I do not like recipes that use cake mixes or brownie mixes. I guess I might be a big of a cooking snob, but I think that takes the fun and creativity out of it. It might save you a few minutes, but if you’re going to dirty a dish I say why not do the whole thing? Anyway, I have been searching for some kind of recipe to follow. Guess what? I couldn’t find one….so I more or less had to piece my own together! I do this a lot so I wasn’t totally surprised….and I was worried about the outcome either. I have made a brownie recipe for some time that I stumbled upon somewhere….excuse me for not remembering, but I cruise a lot of sites! It’s pretty basic, but they always turn out really well. I basically just added a bag of peanut butter chips to see what would happen. The outcome? OH MY GOSH!!!! Yum! Here it the recipe:

Peanut Butter Brownies

  • ½ cup butter

  • 1 cup white sugar

  • 2 eggs

  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

  • 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

  • ½ cup all-purpose flour

  • ¼ tsp salt

  • ¼ tsp baking powder

  • 1 bag of peanut butter chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour an 8-inch square pan. In a large saucepan, melt ½ cup butter.Remove from heat. Stir in sugar, eggs, and vanilla.

Beat in cocoa, flour, salt, and baking powder.

After everything is mixed really well add the peanut butter chips.

Mix the chips into the batter then spread into prepared pan.

Bake in preheated oven for 25-30 minutes. Do not overcook.

The result?! I think you’d better just make these yourself and give me some feedback! 🙂

Let’s just say that I would have loved to sit down and enjoy one of these with a glass of milk….with my Gram! Here’s to you, Gram…..hope you are in the kitchen with your apron on and Grandpa is nearby….love you always! ❤

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