What are they?
I only know a few things about them.
First and foremost, they’re freakin’ tasty.
They’re kind of cakeish.
Sort of cookieish.
And they’re a type of girl scout. You know, the younger girls who don’t sell the Tagalongs and Samoas? Boo.
I got an overwhelming urge to nerd out, so I looked up the definition of “brownie”:
According to dictionary.com:
a tiny, fanciful, good-natured brown elf who secretly helps at night with household chores.
…uhh…what? I’m not kidding when I tell you that this is the first definition of the word “brownie.” Strange, yet kind of awesome. There’s no way you can look me in the eye and honestly tell me you don’t want some miniature dude dusting the coffee table and doing a few loads of laundry while you catch some serious z’s.
The second definiton?
a small, chewy, cakelike cookie, usually made with chocolate, and containing nuts.
Much better! Let’s make some cakelike cookies, shall we?
If you are part of the blogosphere, then you know that it is blatantly obvious that The Baked Brownie is like, the recipe to try. The reviews vary, but in my opinion, it ultimately it depends on how you like your brownies.
Fudgy? Cakey? Super chocolately? “Yes,” “slightly yes,” and “hell yeah” are my answers to those beautiful questions. These brownies hit the spot.
And can I tell you a secret? You have a magical power. Yep, you heard me right. Not the pulling-a-rabbit-out-of-a-hat magic, but this incredible thing called brownie consistency magic. This recipe doesn’t call for any baking powder or baking soda, but I used my BC gift and added about 1/4 tsp of each to the dry mixture. Voila! Still fudgy, with the perfect hint of cakeyness.
Just be careful with this power. Use it, don’t abuse it. Too much will change the flavor, OR make your brownies not brownies anymore, and no one wants that…unless you want cake…whatevs.
The Baked Brownie
(with a few changes by moi)
1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp salt
2 tbsp dark cocoa powder
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
13 oz dark chocolate, chopped coarsely
8 oz unsalted butter
1 1/2 tsp instant espresso powder
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 cup dark brown sugar
5 eggs, room temperature
2 tsp vanilla extract
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease a 9×13 glass pan. Line the greased pan with parchment paper (weird, yes…but you’ll see why later).
2. Whisk the flour, cocoa powder, salt, baking powder, and baking soda in a medium bowl.
3. Using a double-boiler, melt chocolate, butter, and espresso powder, stirring occasionally until smooth.
Don’t have a double-boiler? Neither do I. Sighhh. But not all hope is lost! Just simmer water in a small saucepan, and set a heat-safe bowl on top, making sure the bottom of the bowl does NOT touch the water. Double-boiler. Boom.
4. Turn off the heat, and whisk in both sugars until completely combined. Remove the bowl from the pan, and set aside to cool until it reaches room temperature.
5. Add three of the eggs to the chocolate mixture, whisking until just combined. Whisk in the other two eggs and then add vanilla. Be sure not to over-mix this step!
6. Sprinkle the flour mixture over the chocolate mixture and FOLD the two together using a rubber spatula. Don’t over-fold, either. You’re done combining when there is a slight trace of flour visible.
7. Pour the mixture into the pan and bake for 30 minutes. The brownies are done when you insert a toothpick and it comes out with a few moist crumbs.
8. Allow the brownies to cool completely. (That’s what the directions say…but I did no such thing. I waited until they were warm because I have no patience.) Remove them from the pan by simply lifting the parchment paper. For me, this was a 2-person job. Thank your helper with a brownie.
Stuff your face with them. I won’t judge you.
Then leave the dishes for that fanciful Brownie fella.