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Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Extra Dark Chocolate Brownies

Interestingly enough, I have never in my entire life been a brownie baker.  I've been a brownie eater, but I'd never ventured into that domain before.  Until, that is, brownies were requested from me.
It is hard for me to not fulfill a request related to food.  Especially when that request is for something American, Indian, or Mexican.
So I took on the request.. it really can't be that complicated to make brownies, right?
Well, it depends how you like them.  There are 3 categories of brownie preferences:  cakey, chewy, or fudgy.  The ingredients and cooking times will depend on what you are going for.  My requester obviously had no idea what I was talking about, so I first tried a cakey recipe.  My first try was awful.  I mostly followed the recipe, but I must have overcooked them.  Plus, I realized that my requestor was not a cakey fan.  That one didn't make the cut.
Then I found this one.. a nice fudgy heaven using cacao powder.. meaning REAL chocolate.  The result is absolutely perfect.  I did reduce the sugar a bit because 250g seemed a bit much.  This is one I will be making over and over with different variants (candied ginger instead of chopped chocolate).  It got a thumbs up from every person who tried them.  I never need to search for a brownie recipe again.  This is the ONE.
Borrowed from InspiredTaste.
145g (10 Tbsp) butter
200g (1 cup) sugar
65g (3/4 cup) 100% cacao powder
1/4 tsp sea salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 Tbsp ginger powder
2 large eggs
70g (1/2 cup) flour
75g (2.6oz) chopped dark chocolate (or chocolate chips or nuts)
1.  Place a mixing bowl on top of a pot of simmering water and melt the butter, sugar, and cacao powder while whisking.  This will help it melt gently without burning while nicely infusing the butter with the chocolate.  Set aside to cool.
2.  When cool, stir in the salt, vanilla, and ginger powder and mix well.  I used a wooden spoon.
3.  Drop the eggs in one at a time, beating well each time.  The mixture should go from grainy to glossy, but still nice and thick.  Beat this mixture very very well.
4.  Gently stir in the flour until fully incorporated, then stir in the chopped chocolate or nuts.
5.  Line a baking dish with parchment paper.  Mine was 20 x25 cm (approx 8x10 inch).  The smaller the dish, the taller the brownies. The inverse is also true.  Scrape the batter onto the parchment paper and level it out as much as possible.
6.  Bake at 165°C 325°F for 20-30 minutes.  Mine took exactly 25 minutes.  This may depend on the size of the dish.  Check it after 20 minutes.  A toothpick in the middle should come out almost clean.  The top should be crinkly.  That's good stuff.
7.  Let cool all the way before slicing.
I sliced too soon, but that's ok.
The sugar can probably be reduced to 180g.
The best is to pop in the fridge until cold enough to slice and peel off the parchment paper.. otherwise.. it is a delicious gooey mess and you'll have more on your fingers than in your portions.
This freezes and defrosts very well, too, from what I've heard, but they don't last long enough in this house for me to try that out...

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