A cakey, fudgy, crunchy and decadent treat. The humble brownie. A bit like your favourite chocolate cake, but with a crunchy outside and a middle that isn’t quite cooked. This one is my favourite, from Donna Hay’s website and as usual tweaked a little to suit our taste. I made these for my dear friends Gemma and Oli last night for dessert after our Donna Hay burgers, for which I will add the recipe on the end of this blog post. Incredible!
- 200g dark chocolate, chopped (we use Nestle Club Original and a few squares extra of what ever is in the fridge as the block is 180g)
- 250g unsalted butter, chopped
- 1¾ cups (310g) brown sugar
- 4 eggs
- ⅓ cup (35g) cocoa powder, sifted
- 1¼ cups (185g) plain (all-purpose) flour, sifted
- ¼ teaspoon baking powder
- I also add between 50g and 80g of milk or dark chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 160°C. Place the chocolate and butter in a saucepan over low heat and stir until smooth. Allow to cool slightly.
Place the sugar, eggs, cocoa, flour and baking powder in a bowl. Add the chocolate mixture and mix until combined. Pour into a 20cm-square slice or cake tin lined with non-stick baking paper. Bake for 40-50 minutes or until an inserted skewer withdraws clean. Allow to cool slightly in the tin before slicing. Serve warm or cold. Makes 16 slices.
So now to the real notes. Does it make 16, yes it does. It also makes 8 or 25, just depends how you cut it and how much brownie you can handle in a sitting. Last night I cut 4 large slices for dessert and got about 14 pieces out of the rest. Do you have to add the chocolate chips, no you don’t, they aren’t in the original recipe, but really who doesn’t like chocolate chips?
This recipe is super easy, I got Daniel to help me last night as I was short on time, so he stirred the butter and chocolate in the saucepan while I measured out the other ingredients, but you can do it by yourself quite easily. It takes about 10 minutes to get the mix ready, then it’s the waiting game for them to be ready, it seems like such a long time when you can smell fresh baked brownie scent filling your kitchen but you know that they aren’t ready and won’t be for another 20 minutes. Be strong, it is worth it. Daniel likes his brownies with a crust but still gooey in the middle which is why I repeatedly use this recipe. I have made them about 5 or 6 times now and they have worked without fail everytime. Just don’t be tempted to take it out anytime before 40 minutes. Big mistake! You end up with 4 middle squares that have to be eaten with a spoon off the chopping board!
I find that these are best eaten warm, so fresh is best, but it is very difficult to eat this much chocolate in one sitting. After the first day I suggest a square of brownie in a bowl, into the microwave for between 10 and 20 seconds and it will be beautiful. Add a scoop of vanilla icecream and you have a bowl of deliciousness! I am not going to pretend that this recipe is good for you in any way, shape or form. Realistically if you can’t work that out from the ingredients list, you deserve the stomach ache that comes with eating too much of this at once. 250g of butter, 200g of chocolate and 300g of sugar doesn’t fit in with any diet I’ve ever heard of, that is why this is a dessert and not really for afternoon tea or a snack. Sure a sneaky square out of the container won’t hurt, but I certainly won’t be making these anytime again in the near future unless I invest in a gym membership. DO NOT however let this put you off, as described to me by Gemma these are “pure nommy”. That is what they are, I agree 1000% just make sure you have someone to share them with!I suggest serving these with icecream and some kind of fruit to help with the richness. I got Daniel to decorate the strawberries with some melted white chocolate and they were lovely. You could also serve them with thickened cream or custard. Take my word for it that once you make these, see how easy they are and how delicious they are for the minimal effort involved you will be whipping them out every chance you get. Oh and another thing, they freeze well, so if you want some for yourself but don’t want the whole lot you can always freeze the rest and just defrost them in the microwave.
I hope you enjoy them as much as we all did last night.
P.S Donna Hay Beef and Chorizo Burgers recipe as promised (it’s in this month’s magazine):
500g premium beef mince
1 chorizo, skin removed and chopped (good luck with the skin)
salt and pepper
1/4 cup sour cream
1 tbs horseradish cream
4 crusty breadrolls
For the beetroot relish; 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar, 1/3 cup brown sugar & 200g of tinned baby beetroot drained and chopped
To make the relish place the vinegar and sugar in a saucepan over a low heat and stir until dissolved. Add the beetroot, increase the heat to medium and cook stirring occasionally for 15 minutes or until thickened. Set aside.
Place the beef, chorizo, salt and pepper in a food processor and process until well combined. I did this in 2 batches and then mushed it all together with my hands in a bowl. Shape mixture into 4 patties. Preheat pan or bbq to high heat. Cook for 4-5 minutes each side (mine took 10 minutes each side, just use common sense, no one likes raw mince). Place sour cream and horseradish in a bowl and mix to combine. Spread the rolls with the horseradish mix and top with baby spinach leaves. Add the patties and top with beetroot relish. Serves 4 and is suberb. Definately worth a try!
Have a great weekend everyone x