This recipe is a new one for me. I first tried a brownie recipe from Vogue Entertaining and Travel magazine and it was the most luscious, chocolate-y and devilish tasting brownie. Ever. The texture was perfect too. Crispy yet chewy. Unfortunately the mixture in the recipe was too watery and took too long to bake. And it fell apart out of the tin.
This recipe was adapted from the Cooking for Engineers website and it baked as promised in the recipe but the taste wasn’t as good as Vogue’s. So my pet project now is to tweak both recipes to come up with my perfect brownie. Stay tuned for that!
Anyway I digress.
Last Tuesday can be summed up quite simply…..
Problem: Massive sugar craving. Need a chocolate fix. Now.
Solution: Quick and easy chocolate brownies (that won’t fall apart) with a quick strawberry sauce.
170g dark chocolate – broken into chunks
170g butter – chopped
1 1/2 C (300gm) caster sugar
1 C plain flour
1 tsp vanilla extract
pinch of salt
Preheat oven to 160°C. Butter a baking pan. You can leave it as it is or dust a little flour or cocoa to help the brownies release from the tin.
Put butter in a pan over a very low heat, Once it starts to melt, add the chocolate chunks and slowly melt together. Switch off the heat when it’s all melted and combined and leave to cool for a couple of minutes.
* You can use a double boiler if you want but because the chocolate is melting with a large amount of butter, there is very little chance that the chocolate will burn – provided that the pan is over the lowest heat possible. Also remember do not stir with a wooden spoon as the moisture in the spoon can cause the chocolate to seize.*
Lightly whisk the sugar and eggs together until just combined. Overbeating can add too much air to the mixture which will cause the brownies to rise too much.
Fold the melted chocolate and vanilla extract into the mixture.
Fold in sifted flour and pinch of salt until just mixed. Do not over mix it.
Pour into baking pan and smooth top.
Bake for about 35-45 mins. If you put the mixture in a smaller pan (for thicker and chewier brownies), the baking time will need to be adjusted accordingly.
Brownies should be cooked through but still moist and chewy in the centre. To test this, insert a skewer in the centre. The skewer should have a few crumbs on it but no batter. No crumbs means that the brownies may have overcooked (but it’s still good to eat!).
A punnet of strawberries
Wash strawberries, cut off the hull and chop finely.
Place ingredients in a pan and bring to boil until sugar is dissolved and simmer for about 5 minutes until strawberries have broken down and the mixture starts to thicken up to a syrupy consistency.
I didn’t provide measurements as I have never used a fixed recipe. Add enough water to make syrup but not too much to dilute it. If it’s too watery add a bit of cornflour (dissolved in a dash of water) to thicken it.
The amount of sugar needed depends on how ripe the strawberries are and how sweet you prefer it. Add a tablespoon, take a taste-test and go from there. I personally prefer the syrup to be a little sweet and a little tart -especially if you’re serving it with a very sweet dessert like chocolate. You can also add a tsp of lemon juice for extra tartness if the strawberries are too ripe.
After it’s done – let it cool completely before serving. If you like a smoother sauce push it through a sieve. Personally I love having soft strawberry chunks to chew on so I always leave it as is.
Alternatively you can place the strawberries and sugar in a blender and blend until smooth before pushing it through a fine sieve.
Yum…chocolate and strawberries…..is there a more heavenly partnership?