Wednesday, February 26, 2014

The Brownie Trials: Part I

The average evening in our house consists of Henry dinner/bath/bedtime routine kicking off at around 6:00 and ending anywhere from 7:00-7:30, depending on his needs for a nice long cuddle. After that, I make my way into the kitchen to start on dinner. If I'm lucky, I'm kicked back in our big leather arm chair with my feet elevated by 8:30. At this point in the night I realize how tired I really am and toy with the idea of heading up to bed.. but its not even 9pm! This is adulthood, Janell.. breathe it innn.

Anyway, this week's routine has been slightly strange. After dinner, I've voluntarily stood on my feet just a smidge longer than usual in the name of baking, of all things! As someone who typically only enjoys savory or salty snacks, I've taken delight in not having to fight off cravings of the sinfully chocolate and fattening nature. That is why the past couple evenings have taken me by surprise. I've had brownies on the brain big time. And being an advocate of all things homemade, I set out to find a brownie recipe that fit a very simple set of criteria. The brownies 1. had to be simple (I didn't want to be washing a bunch of extra bowls at that hour of the night) and 2. had to be fast (I wanted my chocolate and I wanted it now). So, I found this recipe through a Pinterest search. It required a bowl and a pan but I got away with only using 1 bowl. The ingredients were items I always have on hand in my baker's cabinet. It also took a measly 25 minutes to bake. It was game on.

25 minutes and some change later, I was slicing off a hunk of warm brownie. I like my brownies a little on the rich side -the kind of brownie that requires a TALL glass of milk- with a crisp top and edges. These brownies had that for sure.  They were a little gooier than I typically like, but they weren't even cooled yet so I decided to give them another go in the morning. Why not, right? In the light of day, the extra gooiness has morphed into the perfect fudgey consistency that I'd been looking for. And the frosting... I don't think I'd ever had a frosted brownie before, unless Little Debbie's count. I'm not a huge frosting person anyways, but this frosting.. Dudes, it was just enough to put these brownies over the top. I really liked the addition of honey in the frosting recipe. It added an extra dimension of flavor and texture to the typical powdered sugar recipe.

When I searched Pinterest for this recipe, I came across a LOT of brownie recipes. Ranging from flour-less gluten-free brownies to s'mores brownies and everything in between. This gave me the idea to test out a few brownie recipes. My waistline will thank me later for spreading this brownie experiment out over the next few weeks (or until my newly found sweet-tooth disappears!) instead of tackling it all at once.

Feel free to follow along in your kitchen, if you'd like. I'd love to hear how the recipes measure up to your discerning brownie standards. Very official stuff.. because brownies are serious business, right "best brownies" recipe

brownie ingredients:
1/2 cup butter
1 cup white sugar
2 eggs
1 t vanilla extract
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/4 t salt
1/4 t baking powder

frosting ingredients:
3 T butter, softened
3 T unsweetened cocoa powder
1 T honey
1 t vanilla extract
1 cup confectioner's sugar

Preheat oven to 350 deg F. Grease and flour an 8x8" pan
In a large saucepan, melt 1/2 cup butter. Remove from heat and stir in sugar, eggs, and 1 t vanilla.
Beat in 1/3 c cocoa, 1/2 c flour, salt, and baking powder. Spread batter into the pan. Bake for 25-30 minutes. Do no overcook.
For frosting, combine butter, cocoa, honey, vanilla extract and confectioners sugar. Stir until smooth. Frost brownies when they are still warm.  Enjoy!

No comments:

Post a Comment

shoot me a line or two