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Cheesy Shrimp Ciabatta

For out last get together I made this delicious Cheesy Shrimp Ciabatta. This is an appetizer that shrimp fans will love. In our family this is one of our most favorite recipes. It's so delicious!

You can go with a baguette instead if you would like bite sized portions, but it is hard to beat a fresh loaf of ciabatta bread. The baguette slices will get much crunchier so if you prefer that mouth feel, you can go with a baguette. A fresh French bread would also work great.


New Orleans Praline Brownies

With this recipe I was reminded of the importance of thoroughly reading a recipe and following directions.

Luckily my brownies still turned out delicious but I did berate myself a little bit for not paying attention to the directions.

For the first dessert post for Mardi Gras Month I went with a deliciously sweet recipe for New Orleans Praline Brownies from Menu Musings of a Modern American Mom. I love Julie's food blog. She is truly a mom who does it all -- she is a professor, mom to a large family, a cookbook author and more. Many thanks to Julie for the recipe and be sure to check her blog out after you read through for the recipe. Enjoy!

Important notes:
~When you prepare your brownies, if there are specific instructions on the box for "fudgy" style brownies, make that and not the "cake" style.
~ To minimize cracks in the praline topping, cut the brownies while the topping is still a touch warm, about 45 minutes after you have frosted the brownies.

New Orleans Praline Brownies
Makes a 9x13" pan


  • Brownies:
  • 1 box fudge brownie mix
  • water, vegetable oil and eggs called for on brownie box 
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans  
  • Praline Frosting:
  • 1/2 cup whipping cream
  • 6 Tbsp butter
  • 1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans, toasted
  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla


For the brownies:

  1. Heat oven to  350 degrees. Line the 9"x13" pan with parchment paper or foil, letting it hang over the sides so later you can remove it easily from the pan.  
  2. Make brownies as directed on box for fudgy brownies (adding water, oil, and eggs).  Stir in 1/2 cup pecans.  
  3. Bake as directed then cool for about an hour until completely cool.

For the topping:

  1. In a small-medium sized saucepan, mix whipping cream, butter and brown sugar. Heat to boiling over medium heat, stirring frequently.  Boil and stir 1 - 2 minutes.  Remove from heat, then stir in toasted pecans, powdered sugar, and vanilla.  Cool 5 minutes, stirring frequently.  
  2. Spread frosting over the cooled pan of brownies.  Let stand for about 45 minutes or until frosting is set before cutting.

Recipe from Menu Musings of a Modern American Mom.


  1. I beat myself up when I've missed a part of instructions when making something new for the first time. I have to remind myself that as long as it's edible than it's okay!

    These brownies do look amazing and I would love to try that praline topping!! Yum!!

  2. I'm bad about assuming I have enough of an ingredient without actually checking the pantry, fridge, etc!
    My brother made praline brownies once. The topping was so hard we could barely bite into the brownie! Your praline topping looks perfect.
    Thanks for sharing your Mardi Gras treats!

    1. I'm really bad about that too Michelle. I'm trying to get better. :) Praline can be kinda fussy I have found. I think the key is to not overcook it and to watch your temperature. It takes a long time to cool down.

  3. A 9x13" pan makes enough to use 1 cup of pecans instead of 1/2 cup - pralines have a lot of nuts and so do brownies. It may be helpful to inexperienced cooks to provide some hints about how to stir in the powdered sugar without getting hundreds of little lumps - it's very hard to do, which is why I usually make a caramel-style frosting from a recipe that thickens without the powered sugar.The combination of the brownies and praline is wonderful - well worth making.


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