Out of all my baking exploits my mum repeatedly tells me that her favourite is my brownies. It has now been decreed that I must not enter her house without bearing a large tub filled to the brim with brownies. I must admit to not being very successful with a variety of recipes in the past until a friend bought me a wonderful book by Linda Collister devoted entirely the Brownie. My no fail recipe is simply called Classic Brownie and is a great base for many additions such as different choc chips or any type of nut that goes well with chocolate. Below are some pictures and the recipe.
Classic Brownies from Brownies by Linda Collister
100g good quality plain chocolate
125g unsalted butter, softened
275g caster sugar
1 teaspoon real vanilla essence
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
85g plain flour
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
100g pecan halves/ pieces (optional or replace with your choice of nuts)
50g good quality chocolate chopped or plain choc chips
– Preheat oven to 180C (350F) Grease & base line a tin approx 20cm X 25cm (I like to line with baking paper leaving an overhang of a few inches to lift the brownies out of the tin)
– Break the 100g chocolate into pieces and melt by your preferred method, either in a heatproof bowl over a pan of steaming water or in the microwave in short bursts. Leave to cool until needed.
– Cream the butter either with a wooden spoon or in a mixer until soft, add the sugar and vanilla and continue beating until the mixture is soft and fluffy. Gradually beat in the eggs then beat in the melted chocolate.
– Sift the flour and cocoa onto the mixture and stir in. When thoroughly combined add the nuts (if required) and the chocolate pieces or chips and stir in. Transfer the mixture the the tin and spread evenly.
– Bake in the preheated oven for about 25 to 30 minutes until a skewer inserted halfway between the sides and centre comes out just clean. Remove the tin from the oven and leave to cool until just warm before removing and cutting into pieces. Once cold, store in an airtight container and eat within 5 days.
The trick to a chewy, fudgy brownie is the take them out just a little before you think you should as they should seem slightly underdone while still warm. I realised that previously I was leaving them in the oven too long and they were becoming like bricks while cooling down!