I think it’s safe to say that they are perfect. Baked many times for various occasions, taste great hot or cold, with ice cream or without, first or third day after baking. Loved by everyone who tried: my family, my friends, my work colleagues. And don’t get me wrong, it’s not even my merit, it’s the recipe which is simply amazing.
How did I discover them?
There was a time I desperately needed to swap my shift at work with someone. Everyone seemed to be busy on that day, nobody was very eager to help me. I couldn’t really afford risking getting fired by not turning up at work so I decided to use my (now known as) brownie card. I offered fresh, homemade brownies to my colleague only if he takes my shift. Guess what. It worked! I ended up with a day off I needed so much, and my friend Gil – with a box full of brownies. I don’t think he actually believed me when I said I was gonna bake for him. He looked pleasantly surprised.
What happened was, I looked online for a perfect recipe for brownies but all of them didn’t look like they were going to work. I just combined few of them into one, and as proved later, perfect recipe.
Even if you are just making your first steps in baking, I’m sure it’ll work. Just give the brownies a chance to be fabulous. Let the brownie shine. And, how my friend Gil would put it: thank you much!
for a big, rectangle tin
370g unsalted butter
400g good quality dark chocolate
170g plain flour
200g white chocolate
80g good quality cocoa powder
6 large eggs
500g golden caster sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
HOW TO MAKE?
1. Cut the butter into small cubes and place it in a bowl. Break the dark chocolate into small chunks and add it to the bowl with butter. In order to melt the butter with chocolate, we need to prepare a medium saucepan, fill it halfway with hot water and place a bowl with chocolate and butter on top. This way we will be able to melt it nicely, without burning it. You should stir it from time to time, to have a pretty, evenly combined mixture. Remove the bowl from the heat and let it cool down. Do not put it in the fridge though because it will settle and become firm. We want it liquid but chilled.
2. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees. Prepare your baking tin. First, grease it with butter, then line with a non-stick baking parchment.
3. Mix cocoa powder and flour and sieve it to a medium bowl, so they are both nicely combined.
4. Chop the white chocolate into small pieces. The easiest way to do it, is to place chocolate on the wooden board and cut it with a big, sharp knife, pressing the tip of a knife against chocolate first and then bringing the rest of the knife down. Be careful not to hurt yourself, some chocolates are surprisingly hard.
5. Now, break all the eggs into a large mixing bowl. Add all the sugar to the eggs. Using your electric mixer, beat the eggs. You want to be using your mixer on a maximum speed, so the eggs will be really fluffy. You have to keep beating the egg and sugar mixture for at least 6-10 minutes. The consistence of the mixture should be similar to this of a milkshake, it should double the size and be really pale.
6. Now, time for hard labour. Add chocolate mixture (cooled) to the egg and sugar mix, pouring it over the top. Now, rather than mixing it in with your mixer, you have to use a rubber spatula. In order to preserve all your hard work from the previous step and keep the mixture fluffy and smooth, you have to delicately fold the chocolate in. Dip the spatula in at one side of the bowl, dive and bring it up the opposite side of the bowl. Repeat in the opposite direction. Imagine you are drawing figures of eights. Continue mixing the chocolate in until the whole mixture gets a nice, brown colour.
7. Now, time to sieve cocoa powder and flour again, this time, holding the sieve over the egg,sugar&chocolate mixture. Move the sieve from side to side, so the surface of the mixture is covered with cocoa and flour. When that’s done, take your rubber spatula again and delicately fold the flour and cocoa powder into the egg mixture. Be delicate. Work using the same method as before, moving your spatula in the figures of eights, bringing the egg mixture from underneath and folding the flour and cocoa in. Don’t overdo it though, we need to keep the precious air bubbles inside. Stop working just before you decide it’s enough. Add white chocolate chunks and mix them in delicately.
8. Pour the mixture into the previously greased tin, trying to even it out. Sometimes it’s difficult to make the surface even, especially corners tend to be much lower that the rest of the cake. You can spread the mixture evenly using a spatula.
9. Put the brownies in the oven, setting your timer for 25 minutes. After that time, open the oven and check if your brownies are ready. To do so, move the tin from side to side delicately; if the middle of the cake is still wobbly and visibly moving, put the cake back in the oven for another 5-7 minutes. Perfectly baked brownies should have shiny, paper-like, crusty top. Take out of the oven and let it cool in a tin.
10. I do not advise cutting the brownies before they are completely cold. It’ll just get messy. When cold, you can probably lift the whole brownies with the paper/foil and cut it on the cutting board (so you won’t damage your baking tin). This recipe is for a big tin, so if it’s too much cake, you can simply cut it in pieces and freeze for up to three months. From my experience: it’s not going to happen though ^^ My brownies disappeared in less than a day, even though I only have one person to share my brownies with (and to be fair, I only had one piece haha).
11. You can serve it warmed up with chocolate sauce and ice cream on top. To make a nice chocolate sauce, simply melt some butter and good quality dark chocolate together, mixing them well. Decorate with some raspberries and mint and voila! Beautiful dessert ^^
Polska wersja przepisu, specjalnie dla polskich Czytelników ^^