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With Christmas around the corner, I really think that these are a fantastic idea for any Christmas party. I mean, we’re all going to be eating around four times the amount of food we normally would, so why not end it off with the cutest little Santa Hat brownies?

These are fairly simple to construct – all you need is a brownie base, some strawberries and some form of icing.

To start with, here’s my favourite American brownie recipe that has been used as my secret weapon too many times:

CHOCOLATE BROWNIES

1 cup sugar
½ cup margarine or butter, softened
1 tsp vanilla
2 eggs
2/3 cups all purpose flour
½ cup cocoa
½ cup chopped walnuts
½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt

Heat oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Mix sugar, margarine, vanilla and eggs. Stir in remaining ingredients. Spead in a greased square pan, 8 x 8 x 2”.  Bake until a toothpick inserted in centre comes out clean after 25 to 30 minutes. Leave to cool. Cut into about 2 inch squares (makes 16 brownies), (but in order to make the round Santa hat brownies, we won’t be cutting them into squares! Instead, use a round cutter to cut out the desired shape of the brownies).

Next, we’ll need to make the icing. I quite like the idea of making a basic butter icing for this recipe, because it’s easy enough to do and won’t cost you much.
However, Daisy’s World suggested a Mascarpone Buttercream instead, and her recipe is as follows:

MASCARPONE BUTTERCREAM

1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
8 ounces mascarpone cheese, room temperature
2-1/2 to 3 cups powdered sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
pinch of salt

Using a stand mixer with a paddle attachment, beat butter and mascarpone cheese until light and creamy, about 2 minutes.  Add vanilla extract and salt.  Add 2-1/2 cups of sugar, half a cup at a time and continue beating until smooth.  Add more sugar, if needed to reach desired consistency and sweetness.

Lastly, to put together the Santa hats, you’ll just need to pipe a ring of ‘icing’ on the top of each brownie, cut the bases off the strawberries and place them flat on the brownies. Then to finish off the hats, dot a bit of icing on the tip of the strawberry.

Everyone will love these.

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