To say that my son (and ahem... my husband) love their XBox & their video games would be an understatement. For me?
I like the XBox for Netflix... and for playing DVD's... and for looking up yoga workouts on YouTube.
That was until my son introduced me to Forza 4 this past week. ;)
He has been prodding me to give at least one of his XBox games a go, and this was the one that appealed to me most. No, I am not much for shooting up bad guys or building a badly pixelated village or castle.
But racing cars? Yep. Count me in!
There was a HUGE learning curve for me... like learning which button was reverse, the gas, and the brake. Racing a car on Forza 4 is multi-tasking at it's finest, folks. (Which makes me question why my son can't take notes & listen to his teachers at the same time at school? Hmmmmm... ;) ) But once I got the hang of it (after maybe 4 or 5 races?), it was pretty easy.
Frosted Pretzel M&M's Brownie Bites
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 10-12 minutes
Ingredients (Approx 32 brownie bites)
- 1 box of dark chocolate brownie mix, batter prepared according to the package directions
- 1 cup of Pretzel M&M's, crushed
- 1 stick of unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 2-3 oz of Marshmallow Fluff
- 1/2 tsp vanilla
- 1/2 cup salted pretzels, crushed & then processed into a fine powder
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Line the cups of the mini muffin pans with liners (approx 32). Set aside.
Prepare the brownie batter according to the box directions. You could also use your favorite from scratch brownie recipe in this.
Dump the Pretzel M&M's into a food storage bag and seal. Crush with a rolling pin or meat mallet. Pour the crushed M&M's into the brownie batter & mix well.
Divide the brownie batter among the 32 mini muffin cups, filling each liner to about 2/3 full.
Bake for 10-12 minutes or until the centers are set.
Allow the brownie bites to cool 10 minutes in the pans, and then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
While the brownie bites are cooling, prepare your salted pretzel buttercream. In a medium bowl, beat together the butter, powdered sugar, and marshmallow fluff until nice and creamy, about 3 minutes. Then beat in the vanilla, and then the pretzel powder. (To make the pretzel powder, first crush the pretzels in a food storage bag with a rolling pin or meat mallet and then grind into a powder using a good blender or a food processor.)
Use a frosting bag & tip to prettily pipe the buttercream on top of each cooled brownie bite. Garnish each frosted brownie bite with a Pretzel M&M and a mini pretzel. Plate & serve.
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These little frosted brownie bites were perfect for popping in our mouths during a pit stop or between races. No utensils required, so we there was no need to even set down our controllers! :)
There is some serious concentration and racing happening here, my friends. I am by far no expert or even close to beating my son in a race yet, but we really had a good time hanging out together for the afternoon. As the mother to a teenage son, I find it more difficult as he gets older to find ways to truly bond and enjoy a little time together. I had been pretty stubborn about trying to play XBox games with him, & now I am wondering why!
I am actually almost excited as my son is as about the release of the new Forza 5 for XBox One on November 22nd.
These tasty bites kept us fueled up through our entire afternoon of racing! :)
Have you played Forza 4 yet? Are you excited for the release of Forza 5 later this week?
How do you find ways to bond with your teenage sons?