Raspberry Brownies and The Wrap Party

Long, long ago when Carl was treading the boards as a professional actor and we were living in abject poverty, Carl gained a role in a Community Theatre production of William Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing.  And being ignorant I had no idea what ‘Community Theatre’ was but when we had no money for food I quickly realised that ‘Community Theatre’ means you do a whole lot of work for nothing.  The enticement being that if the show turns a profit, the profits will be equally distributed amongst the cast.

I was on a mission for this show to turn a profit.  Bums on seats were needed so I went through my address book and phoned all my family and friends and instead of asking them if they’d like to come to the show I just straight up asked, ‘How many tickets would you like and how many performances will be you be attending?’

Raspberry and White Chocolate Brownies

I did weave some magic as a few did respond favourably and I even bought some tickets myself.  But alas, the others in the cast didn’t have a partner sitting at home playing the role of promoter and so the three-week season failed to make a profit which is exactly what most of the cast had been expecting.  Apparently I was a fool for thinking optimistically.

After the final performance there was the wrap party.  Carl begged me to come and said how much everyone in the cast was dying to meet me.

‘But Archie’s only three months old’, I reminded Carl, ‘I can’t leave him home alone’.

‘Well just bring him’.   Yes, it’s as easy as that.

‘To a party?’

‘It’s just casual and only the cast will be there and I’ve told them all about Archie and I’m sure they’d love to meet him.  We’re all heading there straight after the show and you could meet us there.’

‘What time?’

‘About eleven’.


‘We’ll just stay for a couple of hours’.

‘Do I need to bring anything?’

‘No, they said they’ll take care of it.  It’s all organised apparently’.

It was, as I suspected, a very bad idea.  Late at night my new baby and I trekked out to Chippendale which was about an hour away from home.   The party was held in the run-down rented premises of one of the starving actors.  When they told Carl they had taken care of the catering they were lying.  There was nothing.  Not even a morsel.  Okay, now I’m telling lies.  There was something.  The starving actor had cut up some tomatoes and they were on a plate centred on the dining room table that was actually a card table.  And that was it.

The tiny terrace house was filled with cigarette smoke and I was holding Archie and wondering what to do with him.  It was too cold to be outside and too smoky inside.  Most of the actors did move outside so I sat on a couch all by myself and breastfed him while contemplating my exit strategy.

While on the couch one of the very friendly actors came up and offered me a brownie.  I was so surprised as I hadn’t seen these on the card table, only the quartered tomatoes.  She said someone had brought them and they were sharing them around and wanted to include me.  ‘How lovely’, I thought.

I took one of the brownies and it was the worst brownie I had ever tasted.  It was dry and crumbly with no real chocolate flavour with a really course texture.  So dry I could barely swallow it.  But there was nothing else so I ate a few more of them while the very chatty girl sat beside me.  And then my lips started to go numb and I started to feel really tired and became a bit dizzy and the girl left me all alone on the couch then Carl walked in and I told him I wasn’t feeling well and how the brownies were the worst I’d ever tried and that I was really thirsty and could we just go home.  And Carl said, ‘Those aren’t brownies’.

‘She called them brownies’.

‘She was joking.  They’re hash cookies’.

‘They’re what?’

‘They’re full of marijuana.  You shouldn’t be eating those, you’re breastfeeding’.

‘Oh.  Good point.  Well where have you been.  I’ve been sitting in here for an hour and a half hating this party and wanting to leave and you just disappeared and left me sitting here.’

We left soon after.  I never saw any of those actors ever again.

Here’s a brownie – a real brownie that’s more in line with what I would have liked all those years ago.

The best kind of brownie

Raspberry and White Chocolate Brownies

Makes:  16

Degree of Difficulty:  2/5

Cost:  Frozen raspberries and good quality chocolate aren’t cheap but these brownies are so much cheaper than the ones you buy in cafes and delis and when making your own you know exactly what goes in them.

  • 200g dark cooking chocolate
  • 150g butter
  • 1 cup caster sugar
  • 2 tspns vanilla extract
  • 3 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 cup plain flour
  • 1/2 cup SR flour
  • 100g white chocolate bits
  • 150g frozen raspberries

Pre-heat oven to 180C or 160C fan-forced (375F).

Grease and line a 19cm square cake pan.

Melt butter and dark chocolate in a medium heatproof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water.

Stir in the sugar and vanilla, then the eggs, sifted flours, white chocolate and raspberries.

Spread the mixture into prepared pan; bake in a moderate oven for about 35 minutes or until just firm.  Cool in pan.

Turn out; cut into squares.

This recipe is from The Australian Women’s Weekly.

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  1. OMG Charlie! You poor thing! You were drugged >_< they shouldn't put drugs in brownies omg! That's horrible and you were a new mum with a new born 🙁 I'm glad you went home afterwards and never saw those people ever again! That's one heck of a story!

    Have a great weekend and these brownies look DIVINE and agree it's so so so much cheaper to make yourself hehe 🙂

  2. Having just hypothetically come into contact with that cannabis chocolate in Vegas… I’d still prefer these brownies.

  3. Oh no! I can’t believe one of the actors offered you one knowing you had a baby there with you and didn’t at least tell you what they were!!! That’s just not right. Glad everything ended up ok. I’d much prefer your brownies to the hash brownies – baby or no baby. 😉

  4. Sounds like a rough time in your lives but those times give you a greater appreciation for the present and the hard work that got you here. I’m sure if YOU had made the hash brownies they would at least have been moist and tasty. 🙂


  5. Oh my god my friend, I cannot believe someone offered you a hash brownie while breast feeding!!!! That just makes me so mad! Things to be thankful for:
    you and Archie are fine
    You never saw those actors again
    You can make drop dead gorgeous brownies 🙂

    Choc Chip Uru

  6. hahahahaha there wasn’t a sign what kind of brownies they were? Oh my God thank God someone told you, such a tricky thing for a mom who nurse.
    I love the raspberries inside your “normal” brownies

  7. Eri Argyropoulos says:

    hahahahaha there wasn’t a sign what kind of brownies they were? Oh my God thank God someone told you, such a tricky thing for a mom who nurse.
    I love the raspberries inside your “normal” brownies

  8. InTolerant Chef says:

    I guess that explains a lot about Archie then 🙂 I mean his love of acting of course 🙂
    I’m glad to see no controlled substances in your brownies Charlie…but maybe the brownies themselves should be controlled to stop me scoffing a plateful at once!

  9. The minute you said brownie I knew where this was going. It’s definitely possible to make “those” brownies moist and delicious but it’s just something I heard about making butter first. heh

    Everyone would have slept well that night!

    I’ve never been huge on raspberry and chocolate together and I know it’s a match made in heaven – just not in mine. I LOVE raspberries and could happily stand in a patch and eat them right off the vine and I love chocolate.

  10. yummychunklet says:

    These look like the perfect combo of fruit and chocolate in brownies!

  11. Sweet Posy Dreams says:

    I’m with Maureen, I knew there was magic in the brownies that gal offered you! I’d rather just get high on chocolate myself!

  12. omg, I would have been so angry if that happened to me! Didn’t they see you had a baby with you! Ugh. Well these brownies look delicious.

  13. Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella says:

    Oh dear! What a foolish person offering you that brownie while you were breast feeding. Hehe I wonder if Archie has ever thought to use that as an excuse if he is ever caught with some “special” brownies! 😉

  14. Barb Bamber says:

    Wow.. I can’t believe someone could see you nursing a baby and be so rude! You poor thing.. I can just imagine your younger innocent self not knowing what to do. If it happened today.. well, that’d be a different story wouldn’t it.. you’d have told that young lady exactly what you thought. Well, if you wouldn’t, I sure would for you 😀

  15. Juliet Batten says:

    What an awful thing to do to a young mother. I look back on some social events of my younger life and think how self-absorbed everyone was. Sounds like it was the same with this one.

  16. Attending a party 50 years ago and you’d have been enjoying a glass of wine and a smoke while you breastfed Archie but 20 years ago people knew better than to even offer a mother a hash brownie, much less give her one. The dolt!

  17. God, I’m glad those days are behind me, but I’m surprised someone offered them to you when you were obviously breastfeeding. I much prefer just chocolate and raspberries in my brownies.

  18. They certainly look a lot better than your hash cookie from the past.

  19. Oh dear – I have been to some of those parties and wish I hadn’t ……and where are the men folk when you need them?! Nice brownies have never put frozen fruit in mine but these look great. And I bet they are not dry!

  20. Jennifer Cullen says:

    This story made me laugh so hard! The image of you on the couch with baby Archie, the smokey room and starting to feel the effects of the brownies. So funny. My daughter asked me what I was laughing at!

  21. Sophies Foodie Files says:

    Those brownies look utterly delicious, Charly! Real bombs but tasty ones too! 🙂 Yummm! xxx

  22. Claire @ Claire K Creations says:

    Oh dear doesn’t sound like much of a party. It baffles me that people can organise a party at their own how and not thing to feed people!!
    White chocolate and raspberry in a brownie? That sounds just a little bit too delicious!

  23. Hmmm that girl must have had a few too many of those cookies before offering you one if she thought it was ok to give them to someone who was breastfeeding!

    Look the look of these brownies – white chocolate chips in them are my faave 😀 x

  24. Oh gosh. That is like my worst fears of the acting world summed up! Your brownies look considerably better 🙂

  25. Victoria at Flavors of the Sun says:

    Great story, well told. I love the looks of these brownies. I’ve never added frozen raspberries (but I will now), but I have added raspberry preserves with a bit of chipotle chile thrown in. Am certain your version would be much better for a nursing mother. Poor you–not fun.

  26. Gretchen O'Donnell says:

    Oy, vey!!! Not good, the bad brownies! Your experience with Community Theater was very different from mine!!!

  27. Haha, well, I’d have come Charlie – I absolutely love Shakespeare. I’m sorry that I don’t get to see very much of it here in France. I could make an effort and try and find some productions but Shakespeare in French… well, it kind of loses a bit of the charm for me 🙁 Lovely looking brownies!!

  28. Oh my goodness…bad enough to be given a ‘funny brownie” without letting you make the decision for yourself, but really not a good thing to give a young mother! But it does make a really colorful story years later, doesn’t it. I’ll bet Archie thinks it’s a funny story picturing his mother high on a brownie! I think I’d really like the ones YOU made! Much safer, except when I eat them in excess. And I just might, they look that good!

  29. chocolatesuze says:

    HAHAHAHAHA Oh Charlie!

  30. corrie from corriecooks.com says:

    fantastic story! poor thing. Oh well like you said if you make them yourself you know what’s “in them” 🙂

  31. You set the scene so well, I knew what kind of brownie that would be! These white chocolate raspberry brownies look so moist and delicious.

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