Thursday, June 4, 2009

Brownies. Can this be love?

Oh how I love brownies. Oh how I miss brownies. Let me count the ways. During the last 3 weeks of my awful detox diet - to which I have proudly stayed the course - I have not baked. I don't know what is worse - not baking, or not eating. Anyway, I had to break my baking fast last night in order to bake a bunch of things for a party we are having at our house tonight for 70 people. We are having a rocking awesome crawfish boil and we needed some nice comfort food desserts to go with. I decided to make a few trays of my previously posted "Heaven bars", a few trays of some oatmeal raisin bars, and then some old school brownies. Everything looks wonderfully scrumptiddlyocious! I regret to say that I had to break my fast minimally in order to taste the brownies...after all, I don't want to serve my guests bad food - it needed to be tested. All it took was my one little bite and I was love at first bite! The perfect brownie. It was chewy, yet fudgy. Sweet, but not teeth wrenching. Melty, but firm. In other words...OFF THE HOOK! This recipe comes from the infamous Ina Garten - one of my mentors in recipe creating -I love how she makes simple things beautiful and impressive. I adapted the recipe slightly only because I didn't have enough of one kind of chocolate chip, and I went sans the nuts...mostly because we didn't have any, but also because they are expensive. I am sure my guests will be thrilled, as I hope you are!

Outrageous Brownies
adapted from Ina Garten

1 pound unsalted butter (4 sticks)
1 pound plus 12 ounces semisweet chocolate chips, divided (I used a combination of semi-sweet, milk, and white chocolate chips)
6 ounces unsweetened chocolate (I used the BAKER chocolate squares)
6 large eggs room temp
3 tablespoons instant coffee powder
2 tablespoons real vanilla extract
2 1/4 cups sugar
1 1/4 cups flour, divided- 1 cup for batter and 1/4 cup in the chips
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour a 13 by 18 by 1 1/2-inch sheet pan.
Melt together the butter, 1 pound chocolate chips, and bitter chocolate on top of a double boiler...or in a microwave safe bowl in the microwave. Cool slightly. Stir together the eggs, instant coffee, vanilla and sugar. Stir in the warm chocolate mixture and cool to room temperature.

Stir together 1 cup of the flour, baking powder and salt. Add to cooled chocolate mixture. Toss the chocolate chips with 1/4 cup flour to coat. Then add to the chocolate batter. Pour into prepared pan.
Bake for about 30 minutes, or until tester just comes out clean. Halfway through the baking, rap the pan against the oven shelf to allow air to escape from between the pan and the brownie dough. Do not over bake! Cool thoroughly, refrigerate well and cut into squares.

Detox update: It is going well. The first 2 weeks were the hardest...headaches, shaking, anger at carbs : ). Now, it is not so bad. I no longer find myself dreaming about bread and cookies - I even went to class and wasn't tempted to eat all the stuff we made. Weird. On the plus side - I have lost a lot of weight! I haven't actually weighed myself, but as far as the jean test goes - I now fit into my jeans that I haven't fit into for over a year and a half! Sweet! I plan on sticking with this until I get to SC - so only 3 weeks left!

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