It's the first time that I am giving out homemade cookies to friends for Christmas. And I started out with these scrumptious brownies adapted from a recipe of RFCer Barb Schaller. It won first prize in a Minnesota State Fair. I like my brownies 'cakey' rather than 'fudgy' which this perfectly fits the bill. Crumbly, moist, rich, and very chocolatey - quite good with a hot cup of tea or coffee. I have to give strict instructions to my kids not to touch it otherwise I will be left with an empty plate by the time I get home. I do hope they obeyed me. :)
Classic Chocolate Brownies
1 cup [250 g] unsalted butter
250 g unsweetened baking (dark) chocolate (70% cocoa content)
2 cups [400 g] granulated sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup chopped walnuts or pecans (optional)
1 1/3 cups [190 g] cake flour or plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
- Preheat oven to 350°F/180°C/fan 160°C/gas mark 4. Grease and line with grease proof paper (parchment paper) a 13 x 9-inch baking pan.
- In a bowl, combine flour, baking powder and salt (see note below).
- Melt the chocolate and butter in a separate heatproof bowl set on a saucepan with simmering water. Blend well. When everything is melted and blended, remove from saucepan and cool slightly.
- Mix in sugar. Add eggs one at a time. Mix well (if required use wire whisk at this point).
- Add vanilla, mix well. Add in nuts.
- Using a wooden spoon, fold in flour mixture and stir only enough to moisten dry ingredients.
- Pour into the prepared pan. Bake for 33-35 minutes. Do not overbake! The centre when pierced should have moist crumbs but not wet batter.
- Remove from oven and cool in the baking pan for about 10 minutes. Remove from pan and cool completely on a wire rack. Cut into 2-inch squares.
Note: If you do not have cake flour, use all purpose flour but replace 1 Tbsp for every cup with cornflour/cornstarch; though I've used just plain flour here and it didn't seem to affect the result much.