Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Smitten Kitchen Brownies

How about a recipe that's fitting for Valentine's Day? Would that be anything with chocolate? Growing up my dad would give us a small chocolate Whitman's heart every Valentine's Day. Unfortunately for me, I found out after reminiscing about those lovely memories it wasn't my father, but my mother who was providing the Whitman's. So depressing. So, no, I'm not going to wax on about how much I love to hate Valentine's Day. How much ridiculous pressure it puts on our men. The outrageous price of red roses and women's expectations to receive them. The day of love when all you really want is someone to pick up the toys so you don't trip and kill yourself and maybe unload the dishwasher so you don't have to do it for what feels like the gazillionth time, but you're suppose to want a dozen roses that are going to die in a week, but cost the price of a pair of Lululemon leggings and that's what you really want. No, I wouldn't share all that here in this space because that would be really weird and a total over share. So I'll just share chocolate with you. And theeese iiiis some guuuud chocolate (that's me impersonating a Mexican chihuahua). You're not still here, are you? If you are, get out. Now. 

So, yeah....brownies. These brownies are like, totally AMAZINGGGG! They are chocolatey. They are chewy. The edges are so perfectly crisp in all the right ways. They are tad bit doughy. They are soooo yummy. For reals! In my recipe I used chocolate truffles, but you could use dark chocolate chips or a rich, luxurious chocolate bar, too. Just make it rich and luxurious. MmmK?

I was just using up some truffles from (ahem) Christmas. The chocolate flavor in here is sooo very creamy, because you're using melted chocolate versus a cocoa powder. I had to do a double take on that - I thought I forgot the cocoa powder and was about to mix it in mid-pour into the baking dish. You know those moments where you take the dish out of the oven to pour it back into the mixing bowl to add a VIP ingredient? Yeah....that kinda moment. But, no - no cocoa powder. Bazinga!

From start to finish you can be eating these brownies in under an hour. Can you say chocolate fix? And they freeze beautifully. If you have any to freeze, that is! 

Printable Recipe Here

Smitten Kitchen Brownies
recipe just barely adapted from Smitten Kitchen's My Favorite Brownies

6 ounces chocolate truffles, roughly chopped, divided
1/2 cup unsalted butter
1 1/3 cups granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
2/3 cup all purpose flour

Preheat oven to 350ºF. Line an 8x8x2 baking dish with parchment paper so the paper comes over the sides about an inch. Spray with cooking spray.

In a large bowl, melt 3 ounces of the chopped chocolate with the butter in a microwave in 30 second increments, stirring each time until just incorporated, about 1 1/2 minutes total. Or, alternately, melt chocolate over a double broiler. Using a glass bowl that fits tightly over a saucepan, bring 1" of water up to a gentle simmer. Place the chocolate and butter in the bowl on top of the simmering water and stir with a whisk until just about completely melted.  Remove from heat and cool slightly.

Into the chocolate and butter, thoroughly whisk in the granulated sugar, eggs, and vanilla extract. Using a rubber spatula gently fold in salt, flour, and remaining coarsely chopped truffles. Do not over mix! Pour the mixture into the prepared baking dish and bake for 20-25 minutes in preheated oven. Test for doneness by inserting a toothpick in the center of the bars. Brownies are done when toothpick comes out clean. Remove from oven and let cool in pan for about 10 minutes. Pull up on the sides of the parchment and move to a cutting board. Slice bars into 1" squares. Freezes perfectly - if you have any left.

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