Mothers and daughters and ... brownies
My mother passed away several years ago, but some of my fondest memories are the times I spent with her in the kitchen. She was a great cook and passed along to me her willingness to experiment.
That is not to say I enjoyed or appreciated everything she made (super salty creamed chip beef on toast comes to mind), but I have learned to appreciate the effort. My mom was also quite good with my three daughters. In fact, she taught stuff to them I never learned.
In the kitchen these days, with my kids mostly grown and out of the house, I have time to "re-think" ways of doing things. I love to experiment with taste combinations. I like to try the old ways and the new ways.
So, when I pick up a box of brownie mix, the first thought that goes through my mind is, "How do I make this better?" My mom always made brownies from scratch, and they were good, but they were ... consistant. LOLZ
Without a doubt, the best package brownie mix on the market is Ghirardelli. No sense in arguing. It is the best, because old-world-style Ghirardelli chocolate, made in San Francisco, is the best American chocolate. They have several varieties, but get the Double Chocolate or Chocolate Supreme.
Prepare according to the recipe on the box, but add to it, 1/4 teaspoon of almond extract, 1/3 cup of flaked coconut, 1/4 cup slivered almond (chopped), 1/2 cup of Ghirardelli white chocolate chips, and a smidgen more water.
Bake in a 8x8" (or 9x9") glass casserole. Do not overcook!
When they are done, but still warm, cut into 4"x4" (or 3"x3") squares, placing one brownie on each dessert plate. Top with a scoop of vanilla ice cream, a little whipped cream, and a cherry ... and enjoy immediately!