15 Jun 2013 Leave a comment
This is a sweet, chocolately treat, perfect on a rainy day (of which we’ve had several this week). Although these squares are definitely a favorite around here, we don’t make them very often as they’re not exactly low-calorie. Although I did this time, we don’t usually add any nuts, which results in a denser, more fudgy texture.
Generally speaking there aren’t usually a lot of ingredients in a brownie recipe, and it seems like a simple thing to whip up a batch in short order. There are however some brownie pitfalls that should be avoided: overheating the chocolate, overmixing the batter, over or underbaking, inaccurate measuring of ingredients. I know that’s these things seem like no-brainers, and apply to all baking, but brownies don’t seem to have the latitude for even slight inaccuracies that most baking has. If the chocolate is too hot, the eggs won’t be incorporated properly (ew, you want to really avoid having cooked bits of egg in your brownie!). Overmixing the batter producing a thin, crumbly layer on the top that that makes it hard to cut into attractive squares. Overbaking produces a dry, crumbly brownie, while underbaking leaves the middle of the pan a bit of a gloppy, eggy, unappetizing mess. Too much chocolate and the brownies won’t rise properly. I could go on, but you get the picture. Having said all that, don’t be put off, go ahead and make a batch, even when they are less than perfect, they are still delicious!
½ cup butter
2 oz ( 2 squares) semi-sweet baking chocolate OR 2/3 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 cup white sugar
1 tsp vanilla
¾ cup flour
½ cup walnuts, chopped (optional)
Melt butter over low heat, avoid browning the butter. Remove from heat and add the chocolate chips, stirring until mixture is smooth and chocolate is completely incorporated in the butter. Stir in sugar. Blend in eggs, one at a time. Add vanilla, flour and nuts. Mix just until combined. Spread in a greased and very lightly floured 8” x 8” pan. Bake at 350 degrees F for about 25 minutes. Brownies should be done when the sides have just barely started to pull away from the pan. The color should be even (if the edges are browner than the middle, that’s likely overbaked). Cool thoroughly before cutting into squares.