There really is something about still warm, fudgey, chocolatey brownies isn’t there? Even as I’m typing this my eyes keep straying to the pantry where I know there are 2 remaining brownies hidden away for dessert tonight. You see that’s the problem with being a baker. You have to eat the damn stuff you cook! And yes I do realize that that is not strictly a “problem”, but well, it is when you’re trying to be healthy and lose a bit of weight!
I realized the other day though that I hadn’t baked anything delicious for some time and I had a serious chocolate hankering… not to mention friends coming round for coffee in an hour. So you know. Excuses people. Excuses.
Now I pretty much keep a stocked cupboard, meaning I could bake just about anything at short notice. This is something I’ve been keen to do since I was a teenager and somewhat in love with Nigella Lawson… or her store cupboard rather.
So using our friends coming over as an excuse I decided to whip up these perfectly fudgey, delicious, dark chocolate brownies with raspberries. Mmmm brownies and coffee! Heaven I tell you. The point of these brownies though is to be able to create a delicious, moist dessert/morning tea without needing to keep random ingredients in your pantry that always end up going off because you don’t use them often enough. You want (or shall I say, I want) to be able to quickly whip up a yummy afternoon tea whenever people drop by.
That’s where we start our story today. In the pantry, with a selection of ingredients that you can keep on hand without a problem, providing you with the perfect dish to whip up whenever you need it…. even if you only need it because you need chocolate… like… now!
Perfectly Fudgey Dark Choc Raspberry Brownies
200g Dark Chocolate (good quality & at least 50%. Always check for contamination if making gluten free)
250g Unsalted Butter
1 3/4 Cup Lightly packed Brown Sugar
1 1/3 Cup Plain Flour (any will do, including gluten free. However I used this awesome All Purpose GF Flour blend)
1/4 tsp Baking Powder
1/3 Cup Cocoa Powder
1 1/2 Cups Fresh or Frozen Raspberries (I always keep a bag of frozen raspberries on hand for moments like this or an awesome smoothie!)
Preheat your oven to 180º Celsius and line a 25cm square brownie tin with a sheet of baking paper. Give yourself a few extra cm’s of baking paper overhanging on each side so as to make removal from the tin that much easier.
In a large saucepan place the butter and chocolate. Now I like to use chocolate bits or buttons in this case as they melt just so much faster than a good ole’ block of chocolate. If you are looking to make these gluten free please make sure that the chocolate you’ve selected is in fact Gluten free and not contaminated. Nestle dark choc bits and melts are all guaranteed gluten free, as are a range of other Nestle products!
Pop your saucepan of chocolate and butter over a low heat and slowly melt the two together until no lumps remain. Periodically take it off the heat and stir continuously just so as to avoid burning the chocolate and ensuring you get an even melt. Once beautiful and liquidy remove from the heat completely and add the eggs and brown sugar. Stir roughly a couple of times just to incorporate.
Now you can add in the flour, baking powder and cocoa and incorporate really well. Keeping all of your ingredients in the large saucepan throughout will help you here, so don’t feel the need to move them into a mixing bowl. Using the already warm saucepan will help keep the chocolate mix warm which will help it stay in a liquid state or longer and make the mixing in process just a tad smoother for you.
Once everything is nicely incorporated you can pour the gorgeously gooey concoction into your pre-lined tin and then sprinkle the raspberries on top pushing them just slightly into the mix. Now it’s straight into the oven from here for approx 45 minutes.
People always ask what’s the key to cooking a perfectly fudgey brownie, well I can tell you what it is. It is cooking only until the crust has set and the brownie still feels soft to the touch! It is very much a personal choice as to just how fudgey you like them but do not rely on the old skewer through the center test here. I wait until the edges have pulled away from the tin and the top has a nice crust on it and when touched in the center the brownie is still soft.
Some will tell you it is under cooked still at this point… and to a degree they are right. You must let your brownie ‘set’ fully now and cool before you can remove it from the tin or cut it. Doing so before it’s set will leave you with a running gushy mush everywhere! And though they may be deliciously yummy to clean up, it’s not always so fun.
Once cooled your brownies will have hardened somewhat, though the very center may still be soft to the touch. You can dust with icing sugar, cut into squares and serve warm with a glass of milk! Mmmmm delicious! I do advise you get in quick with these babies, they have a habit of disappearing very very quickly!… well at least they do while I’m around!
Serves: 16 pieces
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
So there you have it. The most delicious batch of rather naughty, dark chocolate brownies made just that little bit nicer with little tart bursts of raspberry. You really can’t beat it! Now I’m off to investigate those two pieces hiding in my pantry…. sssshhhhh!!!! I’m sure hubby won’t notice if I eat both.