Welcome to ‘The Chronicles of a Reluctant Housewife’ where I document my love/hate relationship with my current occupation.
Today I present an awesome brownie recipe.* Now, I give you this with the full understanding that you promise to use it and share it often.
What you need:
A 25cm (or 26x27) baking tin/pan
Sifter (or whisk)
Medium mixing bowl
250g unsalted butter (I use a block of Lurpak)
200g dark chocolate
80g cocoa powder (sifted)
65g plain flour (sifted)
1tsp baking powder
360g caster sugar
Now these are enough for the basic brownie. I have to variations as well.
1) Christmas brownie Tangerine zest & 50g of chopped hazelnut
2) Black Forest brownie 75 g tinned black cherries (drained & cut up; fresh works just as well, if not better), 50g cherry jam
-I start by gathering ingredients and measuring them out, at least the dry ones. I then slice the block of butter to make it easier to melt.
-Preheat the oven to 180 C (350F). Line the baking tin/pan with baking paper.
-Gently melt the dark chocolate and butter together in small saucepan over low heat. I stir every few minutes with wooden spoon. When the butter is almost melted, turn off the heat so the mixture doesn’t burn. VARIATIONS: Christmas: Add tangerine zest and chopped hazelnut to the melted mixture. Black Forest: add chopped cherries
-While this is melting, gather together the dry ingredients; cocoa powder, flour, baking powder, caster sugar. I don’t have a sifter. I put all the dry ingredients in the mixing bowl and mix them together with a whisk. The effect seems to be the same.
-Once the melted chocolate mixture is ready and the dry ingredients are sifted (whisked) add the chocolate mixture to the mixing bowl. Mix together, gently, with a wooden spoon. (It will take a bit and feel a bit gritty, but keep going. It may clumps on the sides of the bowl. Use a rubber scraper along the side of the bowl to incorporate the clumps into the mixture.
-At this point, beat the four eggs together and add them to the mixture. They will resist, but mix gently with the wooden spoon until silky. The mixture should start to pull away from the sides of the bowl. VARIATIONS: Black Forest: when the mixture is nice and silky, add the cherry jam. Just mix it enough to create a visual swirl.
-Pour the mixture into the baking tin/pan. You may have to ease it into the corners. Into the oven it goes for 25 minutes.
-At 25 minutes the middle should be gooey and the top will be crisp with a few cracks around the edges. Allow the brownies to cool in the tin/pan on a cooling rack. After about 15 minutes you should be able to lift the mixture out by grabbing the paper edges. Allow the brownie block to cool the rest of the way in just the paper on the cooling tray.
-Cut into 20 squares. Store in an airtight container lined with parchment baking paper.
Zap a square in the microwave for about 20 seconds. It will be melt-in-your-mouth, buttery, chocolate heaven. Add a scoop of ice cream or a drizzle of Bailey’s. Or eat cold in secret as you pass through the kitchen. Either way, enjoy.
*The recipe is originally from Jamie Oliver. The variations are mine.