Sunday, January 18, 2009

Chocolate Cocoa Brownies

So today is my birthday. Yay! I am always up for a delicious sweet treat, especially on my birthday. I decided that it would be best if I made something sweet with my own hands to enjoy on this special occasion. First, I thought I would make a cherry pie. Unfortunately though, I could not find my rolling pin. Watch out for the Cherry Pie blog next time, this time with a rolling pin in hand. For now, enjoy this Chocolate Cocoa Brownie recipe that I found on, with a few exceptions of almond and honey on my part.

* 10 tablespoons (1 1/4 sticks) unsalted butter
* 1 1/4 cups sugar
* 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder (natural or Dutch-process)
* 1/4 teaspoon salt
* 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
* 1/3 cup honey (I used orange blossom)
* 2 cold large eggs
* 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
* 2/3 cup nuts (I used crushed almonds)

* Confectioners Sugar for garnish
* Special equipment: An 8-inch square baking pan


Position a rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat the oven to 325°F. Line the bottom and sides of the baking pan with parchment paper or foil, leaving an overhang on two opposite sides.

Combine the butter, sugar, cocoa, and salt in a medium heatproof bowl and set the bowl in a 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 fairly 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.

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 flour and stir until you cannot see it any longer, then beat vigorously for 40 strokes with the wooden spoon or a rubber spatula. Stir in the nuts, if using. Spread evenly in the lined pan.

Bake until a toothpick plunged into the center emerges slightly moist with batter, 20 to 25 minutes. Let cool completely on a rack.

Lift up the ends of the parchment or foil liner, and transfer the brownies to a cutting board. Cut into 16 or 25 squares, and garnish with confectioners sugar.
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New Ideas? Alterations? Substitutes? I wanna know!