Monday, March 10, 2008

Treat of the Week #5

The Spicy Maya Brownie has opened a floodgate. Now, all I want is brownies all the time. So I'm back on a quest to discover the perfect brownie recipe. If any of you have one, send it my way (it just might make treat of the week.) In the meantime, here's the first attempt at the perfect brownie. I doubled this batch and sent most of these to work with my husband for a company picnic on Friday; apparently they didn't last too long.
Triple Chocolate Brownies

1 cup sugar
½ cup butter, melted
2 eggs
½ tsp. vanilla
2/3 cup flour
½ cup baking cocoa
½ tsp. baking powder
½ tsp. salt
½ cup white chocolate chips
½ cup semi-sweet chips
½ diced walnuts

Mix together sugar, butter, eggs, and vanilla. Combine flour, cocoa, powder and salt and sift. Add flour mixture to the sugar mixture and combine. Stir in chocolate chips and nuts until just incorporated. Spread into a greased 8x8 pan and bake at 350 degrees for about 25 minutes. Toothpick should come out with moist crumbs, not completely clean. DO NOT OVERBAKE (brownie will come out dry-and who wants a dry brownie, YUCK!) Cool completely before cutting.

For any of you starting our with the whole brownies from scratch, not from a box endeavor; here are my three best tips:

1. Always use good vanilla. This pretty much goes for ANY baking, but just dig deep, suck it up, and buy the real vanilla extract. It's so worth it and you really can taste a difference.

2. ALWAYS sift your dry ingredients together for brownies and cookies before combining with the sugar and butter. For years I thought this was a wasted step and just a way to dirty another bowl, but then I finally started adding this once I realized pretty much every recipe asked you to. It makes a world of difference. The dry ingredients incorporate better, and since you are not mixing so much, the final product comes out more moist and tender.

3. Remember, you are not making whipped cream, you are making brownies, the ingredients do not need to be beaten into submission, just combined thoroughly. If you beat the brownie batter, they will turn out tougher and drier. Use no more than a medium speed on your kitchen aid and cranking it up faster does not mean you'll get to eat a brownie that much sooner.


Abi said...

I made a fantastic peach cobbler this weekend at the lake (if I do say so myself). I posted a link to the recipe on my blog if you're interested. I totally recommend it and it's SOO easy!!

joanna said...

This is what my mom made practically every sunday night when I was a kid and they are scruptious:
Lollie's Brownies (I'm not sure who Lollie is)
4oz unsweetened baking chocolate
1/2 C. butter

Remove from heat and add-
2 C sugar
4 eggs, beaten
1/4 t. salt

Stir in-
1 tsp vanilla
1 C flour
1 C chopped walnuts

Bake in 9x13 pan at 350 for 30 minutes.

The McPherson Clan--- said...

What if I like to beat my brownies into submission?? I mean, it's not appropriate with the kids and I need some kind of therapeutice release!