On The Chew awhile ago, during the first segment, Clinton asked the other hosts if they’d ever not been invited to a wedding they thought they would be invited to. They all said no. But it immediately brought to mind two separate occasions when this happened to me. One was worse than the other, but they both hurt. The thing is, I was around ten years old for both weddings, and when you’re a kid, it’s different. People sometimes don’t want kids at weddings. Even if they have some kids there, it’s easy to cut kids, figuring they won’t care, they probably don’t want to be there anyway. However, in both cases, I wasn’t just a kid wanting to tag along with my parents; instead I was a friend of both couples.
In the first case, it was a co-worker of Mom’s. She came over to our house sometimes, came to my birthday party, we went to lunch and dinner all the time. Sometimes Mom, Dad, and I even met her and her future husband for dinner. Mom helped her find a house to buy. We shared a love of sparkly makeup and fancy jewelry. She was one of my best friends. Sure, it sounds odd since I was ten and she wasn’t, but I’ve never had many friends my own age, if any at all.
I was so excited to head to her out-of-town wedding. The chance to explore a new city, get dressed up, party. Except the invitation was addressed only to Mom and Dad. Upon questioning, she said she hadn’t even invited some cousins who were kids. But I wasn’t just some kid, I was her friend. Instead of going to her wedding, we stayed home and probably watched a movie or did some other mundane activity.
The second case was with one of Dad’s colleagues. For awhile we threw a summer party and a Christmas party at our house for Dad’s friends from work each year. They could be a lot of fun and introduced both Mom and me to lots of new, super nice people. We formed a really strong bond with one couple. We looked forward to seeing them. I would spend the whole party talking to the then girlfriend of Dad’s coworker. We planned celebrating my birthday together (which never happened) and even talked pretty extensively about their wedding and how much fun it would be. Mom and I were both invited to and attended the bridal shower. And then the wedding invitation came without my name on it. I don’t remember the explanation as to why, only that it broke my heart. Clearly since I’m writing about these situations all these years later, it still really bothers me.
But you know what makes everything better? Brownies. These Rich Carob Powder Brownies are sure to cure any blues. They are the deepest, darkest, richest brownies with intense chocolate-like flavor. They are ooey and gooey and fudgy. They are basically super insanely delicious. The recipe will work just fine with cocoa powder, but I’m not sure if they’ll be as dark, so try to use the darkest cocoa you can find. I liked mine drizzled with a little melted peanut butter. It mellowed the intense flavor, as my taste buds still aren’t used to it after not having anything like chocolate in a long time. I am becoming pretty obsessed with carob and brownies, though! And, if brownies make you feel better, brownies and peanut butter are sure to make you a whole new person!
1 ¼ sticks unsalted butter
1 cup granulated sugar
½ cup packed light brown sugar
¾ cup plus 2 tablespoons carob powder
½ teaspoon salt, optional
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 large eggs
½ cup all-purpose flour
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Line an 8 inch square baking pan with parchment paper, leaving enough overhang to pull the brownies out later.
In a large microwave safe bowl, combine butter, sugars, carob powder, and salt, if using. Microwave in 30 second increments, stirring in between until the butter is melted and the ingredients are all well incorporated upon stirring. Allow it to cool about 5 minutes. Then add the vanilla and stir. Add the eggs one at a time, stirring in between until fully incorporated. Add the flour and stir until just combined. Do not over mix.
Pour batter into prepared pan and bake 30-35 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with a few moist crumbs and the brownies are set. These are best served warm out of the oven, but may be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.
Recipe adapted from Mel's Kitchen Cafe