Monday, November 8, 2010

Boss Brownies - and I'm not talkin' Bruce Springsteen

Dutch Process High Fat Cocoa: Seriously, there's nothing in my pantry that sounds better than this...except maybe a lovely bottle of Italian red wine I'm saving for just the right meal.

But since I'm in the mood for chocolate, my son is begging me for something chocolaty and I just happen to have said Dutch Process High Fat Cocoa  from Penzeys on hand,  I set out to find a recipe that would yield a perfect batch of soft, chewy brownies with that glossy "crust" top, slightly bittersweet and rich, but without that cloying sweetness that makes me grit my teeth.

Milder and mellower in flavor than unsweetened cocoa powder, Dutch-process cocoa also dissolves easily in liquid. The butter, sugar and cocoa in this recipe are melted over simmering water until smooth and shinny. Next eggs are added one at a time and blended until the batter turns glossy.

Here's a recipe adapted from Epicurious that fits the bill and then some.

Boss Cocoa Brownies

  • 10 Tablespoons unsalted sweet butter
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 34 cups plus 2 tablespoons unsweetened  Dutch-process cocoa powder 
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pure Madagascar vanilla extract
  • 2 cold large eggs
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup walnut or pecan pieces (optional)

  1. Position a rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat the oven to 325 F. Line the bottom and sides of an 8-inch square baking pan with foil or parchment paper, leaving an overhang on two opposite sides.
  2. Combine the butter, sugar, cocoa and salt in a medium heatproof blow and set the bowl in t wide skillet of barely simmering water. Stir from time to time until the butter is melted and the mixture is smooth and hot enough that you want to remove your finger quickly after dipping it in to test. Remove the bowl from the skillet and set aside briefly until the mixture is only warm, not hot.
  3. Stir in the vanilla with a wooden spoon. Add the eggs one at a time, stirring vigorously after each one. When the batter looks thick, shiny and well blended, add the four and stir until you can't see it any longer, then beat vigorously for 40 strokes wit the wooden spoon or a rubber spatula. Stir in the nuts, if using,. Spread evenly in the lined pan.
  4. Bake until a toothpick plunged into the center emerges slightly moist with batter, 20-25 minutes. Let cool completely on a rack. If you cut it too soon, it'll be too gooey (which we did because we couldn't wait)
  5. Lift up the ends of the parchment or foil liner, and transfer the brownies to a cutting board. Cut into 15 or 25 squares.

1 comment:

KK said...

mmm...brownies, yum !