Thursday, March 18, 2010
The Best Brownies
I just got a new 13x9-inch Goldtouch baking pan. I was so excited to try it out that I made two desserts for our St. Patrick’s Day dinner—just so I could try out this pan. This is our favorite brownie recipe—they are fudgy without being gooey, deeply chocolatey, and delicious.
(adapted from On-the-Fence Brownies from KAF Cookie Companion)
1 cup (2 sticks, 8 ounces) unsalted butter
2 ¼ cups (15 ¾ ounces) sugar
1 ¼ cups (3 ¾ ounces) Dutch process cocoa
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
4 large eggs
1 ½ cups (6 ¼ ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour
1 cup (4 ounces) chopped walnuts or pecans (optional)
1 cup (6 ounces) chocolate chips (optional)
¾ cup (6 ounces) heavy whipping cream
1 ¼ cups (8 ounces) semisweet chocolate (chips or block)
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease (or spray with Baker’s Joy) a 9 x 13 x 2-inch pan.
In a medium saucepan set over low heat, melt the butter, then add the sugar and stir to combine. Return the mixture to heat just briefly to help dissolve a little more of the sugar (don’t keep it over the heat very long at all). Alternatively, you can melt the butter in the microwave, then proceed as described as below.
Stir in the cocoa, salt, baking powder, and vanilla. Whisk in the eggs, stirring just until the eggs are mixed in. Do not over mix (over mixing will create a thick hard crust on top of the brownies). Then add the flour, nuts, and chips, stirring just until mixed in. Spoon batter into prepared pan.
Bake the brownies for 25 to 30 minutes, until a cake tester inserted between the center and edge comes out clean or with moist crumbs (check early). The brownies should feel set on the edges and in the center. Remove them from the oven and cool on a rack.
For ganache, heat cream in microwave or on stovetop just until whisps of steam form. Pour hot cream over chopped chocolate in a large bowl. Stir until smooth. Let stand until ganache has thickened to desired consistency. Pour/spread over brownies.