When I was growing up, my mom used to make what I like to call a “pumpkin face brownie” every Halloween and/or Thanksgiving. As I got older, I became fond of this tradition and even loved to help create the brownie through the years. When I got even older and moved into my own place and had a huge Halloween party one year, my roommate and I knew we needed to serve something other than keg-beer. Good ole pumpkin face brownie to the rescue. Now as a Mommy (let’s leave the even older part out this time), this morning I found myself making this classic with my little boy to take to a family Halloween party tomorrow night.
Not sure where my mom got the recipe idea, I googled for “pumpkin face brownie” and did a search on Pinterest for “pumpkin brownie” and all it did was make me hungry. Still curious, I called up my mom and asked her if she remembered where she found the recipe. “Oh probably a Good Housekeeping magazine if I could guess,” she rattled off, “Let me look in my recipe box and I’ll call you back.”
Low and behold, about 15 minutes later my mom called back with the original tattered and ripped magazine clipping in hand. She was right – the recipe came from a 1983 fall issue of Good Housekeeping. The idea was featured as a Betty Crocker recipe simply called “Halloween Pumpkin Brownie.” This childhood favorite of mine is most definitely worthy of sharing with others. It’s easy to make and will “delight the kids!” according to the clipping.
One box Betty Crocker Fudge Brownies (calls for two eggs and 2/3 cup oil)
One can Betty Crocker Rich and Creamy Vanilla Frosting
Food coloring (red + yellow = orange)
Circular baking tray
1. Bake brownie according to the directions on the box. Don’t forget to spray circular baking tray with cooking spray.
2. Allow brownie to cool completely.
3. Dye frosting orange; spread generously over the brownie.
4. Use candy to create the pumpkin face. Get creative with this step! This year I made mine according to the original recipe, but in years past I have used a variety of candy and colors to design my pumpkin face.
5. Eat and share with friends!
Here are a few other variations: (1) aforementioned pumpkin face the year of the keg party, and (2) pumpkin face cookies circa 1984 with my brothers.
If you are looking for a last-minute festive recipe this fall, a pumpkin face brownie will be a smash with kids of all ages. Make it, share it, eat it, pin it… because who doesn’t love a brownie smothered in icing with a pumpkin candy face?