Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Classic Brownies

I have a confession to make: up until last week, I haven’t been able to make a proper brownie. Sad, considering I can make some pretty fancy desserts. I think this is due to the fact that I don’t really care for chocolate baked goods – I don’t ever eat chocolate cake and I very rarely eat brownies – and therefore I am not so familiar with their taste and texture. Every attempt of mine to make brownies over the last few years has turned out too dry, too gooey, too something. In the event that I was asked to make brownies, I’d use a box mix (I highly recommend the Ghirardelli Triple Chocolate Brownie Mix – it’s seriously the best box mix in existence). In fact, I probably will continue to use this mix if I’m making brownies for some sort of event (shhhh, don’t tell). 
However, sometimes a girl gets a craving for a brownie at 10 pm and what is she to do if the nearby supermarket is closed and she doesn’t have any brownie mix in the pantry? The answer is to make these brownies.
I created the recipe by combining two recipes I liked and then modifying it a bit according to my so-called baking expertise. The end result is a brownie that is chocolaty and chewy and just the right balance between cakey and fudgy. The quality of chocolate you use in these brownies will make or break them, so spend the extra buck or two and upgrade from Hershey’s or Toll House to, at the very least, Ghirardelli. These days, you can even find Scharffenberger chocolate in the supermarket. A high end chocolate like Valrhona or Callebaut will make these brownies even better.

Classic Brownies
(makes 16 brownies)

1 stick (4 ounces) unsalted butter
4 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate
2 eggs
½ cup dark brown sugar
½ cup light brown sugar
¼ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
½ cup flour
1/3 cup chopped walnuts, lightly toasted


Heat oven to 350° F. Line an 8x8 or 6x10 pan with parchment paper and lightly grease the paper.

Cut the butter into pieces and put in a microwave-safe bowl with the chocolate. Melt the mixture by heating on medium power for 2 minutes, stirring, and heating for another 1 minute. Stir the mixture well – there may be lumps of chocolate, but they should melt after about 30 seconds of stirring. If the chocolate is not melted after this time, return to the microwave for 10-15 seconds at a time, stirring after each heating.
In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, sugars, salt, and vanilla for 1 minute – the mixture should be light and frothy. Whisk in the chocolate and butter mixture.

Stir in the flour and mix until somewhat stiff and the mixture pulls away from the side of the bowl, about 1 minute. Stir in the walnuts. Pour into the prepared pan and bake for 35-40 minutes – the top should be shiny and starting to crack and a toothpick should come out with a few crumbs clinging to it.


kristen said...

why does this look SO MUCH EASIER than the last time i made brownies?

i'm totally making brownies tonight.

I'll blame you when i'm too fat for my clothes.

malini said...

I'm not a good baker. But this "classic brownies" make me want to bake.

Anonymous said...

These were really good.. I made them immediately after reading the recipe and they were easy and quick to make. Ready in 40 minutes with the perfect texture and flavor.. not too sweet and not too bland either.

Perfect! Thanks a ton for satisfying my week long chocolate craving!! :D

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