"I'd make a thousand trips
to his lips
If I were a bee
Because he's sweeter than
Chocolate candy to me...he's confectionary."
~Billie HolidayToday a friend called to ask me how I was holding up under the teenage-angst-onslaught I've recently and relentlessly been subjected to. "Fine," I replied. "I'm making brownies because I don't know what else to do." So there you have it - when all else fails, and it has of late, make something chocolate.
A few weeks ago I posted a recipe for "Boss Brownies", not named after Bruce Springsteen, although I have been rockin' "Walk you all the way Home", on my iPod, but because they were that good. Sadly, they lacked that glossy, crusty top that I love in a good brownie, so today's mission was to achieve said crusty-glossy sublimeness.
The recipe that follows comes from my favorite chocolate cookbook, The Joy of Chocolate, by Judith Olney. My step dad, Michael, gave me the book when I turned 25 and had not a
|Copious amounts of butter and bittersweet chocolate |
are a heavenly elixir for all that ails.
|Instant espresso crystals deepen the rich flavor of the brownies: |
caffeine + chocolate = just what Dr. Feel Good ordered
|The trick to a lovely crunchy crust is to beat the eggs until they're thick|
Then add the sugar slowly and beat for 10 minutes
until you have a meringue- like concoction
|Voila - Glossy, rich, perfect brownies|
- 6 ounces bittersweet chocolate
- 1 12/ sticks unsalted butter
- 1 Tbsp. instant espresso powder
- 1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 1 Tbsp. Madagascar vanilla
- 4 eggs
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 2 1/3 cups granulated sugar
- 1 1/4 cups all-purpose four, sifted after measuring
- Preheat oven to 375F and butter and flour a 9x13-inch pan.
- Melt butter and chocolate together over hot water. Stir to blend, then put aside to cool slightly. Stir in coffee, cinnamon, and vanilla.
- Place eggs and salt in the bowl of an electric mixer and beat until slightly thickened. Add the sugar slowly, in 5 or 6 portions, and continue beating the eggs for 10 minutes. The consistency should be perfectly smooth (feel the eggs with fingers; there should be no undissolved granules of sugar).
- Stir in the chocolate until just blended, then fold in the flour, lifting and turning the mass only until the flour is fully incorporated.
- Pour the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top. Bake for 15 minutes, then cover the brownies lightly with a sheet of aluminum foil and continue baking for 15-20 minutes.
- Remove from oven and place pan on a cake rack. Remove foil and let the brownies sit for 2 hours before cutting.