Let’s kick off 2019 – albeit belatedly – with these magnificent Brownies in part one of The Brownies Diaries! ❤
Hello hello! It’s a month into the new year (already!) and I’m truly hoping 2019 is off to a great start for you! The past few weeks have been all about content planning; an impromptu trip to spend time with family and lots of reading! Ah bliss! 🙂
There are a few big things happening this year and I’m beyond excited!
- The fiance and I are tying the knot!!!! Yep, THAT’s happening THIS year! (breathe, Winola, breathe!) Naturally, the blog is going to look a little different this year; I’m a bride on a budget, so there’s going to be some DIYs, some recipes for stress-relief, and a whole gamut of emotions a bride-to-be goes through. Wish us luck! 🙂
- An exclusive The Foodscape email list is coming! It’ll go live in mid-2019, and there’s going to be bundles of exclusive content, giveaways and guides for subscribers, stuff you’re going to want to get your hands on! Stay tuned.
- I’m doing a Brownies recipe series through the year – The Brownies Diaries! I’ll be trying and testing several popular Brownies recipes on the internet with twists and tinkering of my own, till I find one that sticks – one that gives you the most gooey, fudgy crumb; a crackling crust for texture and that lovely glossy film that makes brownies look like they deserve a modeling contract! We’re starting the series with this recipe for Tasty’s Best Brownies!
Sometime last year, I was a little embarrassed when I realized that my primarily-dessert blog didn’t have a single brownies recipe on it. (Such a transgression!) So last year I posted my recipe for these glorious Raspberry Brownies that received so much love, I was blown away! ❤
While those brownies were beyond incredible, sadly, they did not include a crackling crust or that mesmerizing glossy, cracked film. I knew that I needed to put my go-to brownies recipe on the back bench until I found one that ticked all the boxes. Does Tasty’s claim – ‘The Best Brownies’ – hold good? Let’s find out…
Here’s what you need:
- Unsalted Butter – 187 g
- 70% Dark Chocolate – 150 g
- Cocoa Powder – 54 g
- Espresso Powder – 1/2 tbsp
- Granulated Sugar – 200 g
- Dark Brown Sugar – 50 g
- Vanilla Extract – 1 + 1/3 tsp
- Salt – 1 tsp
- Eggs – 4, large
- All Purpose Flour – 91 g
- Sea Salt Flakes for sprinkling (optional)
Here’s how you make these drop-dead-divine Brownies:
- Prep: Preheat the oven to 180 ºC / 356 ºF. Grease an 8-inch square cake tin with butter/non-stick spray. Then line it with parchment paper. Use butter to grease the parchment paper as well. Set aside.
- Make chocolate mixture: Combine chopped chocolate, 27 g of cocoa and espresso powder in a bowl. Heat butter till it melts and simmers vigorously, then pour it over the chocolate. Whisk until smooth.
- Make the batter: In a large bowl beat sugar, eggs and vanilla on high speed for 10 minutes until light and fluffy. As stated in the Tasty recipe, at this point the mixture will resemble thick pancake batter (it really does!). Pour the warm chocolate-butter mixture into the batter and beat. Sift the flour and remaining cocoa into the batter and gently fold until just combined.
- Bake: Pour the batter into the prepared cake tin and bake until lightly risen, about 20 minutes. At this point, remove the cake tin from the oven and drop it onto the kitchen counter 2-3 times to crack the top and deflate. If you don’t have a cracked top yet, don’t worry. Just lightly slam the tin against the counter to deflate it. (Sprinkle sea salt flakes over the top, if using) Return the tin to the oven and bake for another 20-25 minutes. Do not at any point open the oven. When the 25 minutes are up, a skewer inserted into the centre will come out with fudgy, wet crumbs attached.
- Leave to cool: Beat the urge to place the brownies back into the oven despite the skewer coming out with fudgy crumbs attached. After having baked for 40-45 minutes, they are definitely cooked through. Trust they will firm up as they cool completely on the counter.
- Serve: As the brownies cool, they will settle and deflate, giving them a crunchy, cracked top and a moist dense crumb. Serve warm or cooled completely.
Can we all take a moment to appreciate how beyond stunning these Brownies look? I mean, look at them! They are tall and stately; commanding your eye; blowing your mind; and simply standing imperial and grand! It’s hard to beat, really. But for the purpose of this series, let’s dissect these stunners…
That Gooey Crumb
A fudgy, gooey crumb is non-negotiable in a good brownies recipe, and I’m happy to report that this recipe renders just that. The crumb is soft, gooey, oh-so-fudgy and completely bonkers! As you sink your teeth into this brownie, you’ll feel the buttery confection melt slowly and luxuriously!
Crisp & Crackle
I’ve long missed that almost-biscuit-like crisp on the top of a brownie, and I was over the moon when I first dug into these. That subtle crackle and crunch on the top provided oodles of texture and bite; placing this brownie in that sweet spot that is neither cake nor cookie. Surely a win!
The non glossy flop was quite a bummer. I stood in front of the oven the whole time as these brownies were baking, willing the top to turn into that flaky film that shimmers and shines. But it was not to be. No matter how much I wanted it, the top of these brownies stayed matte, but crisped up nicely. Not the best brownies to look at; but they really aren’t being looked at much are they? For they’re busy being eaten!
Remember that scene in Chef when Jon Favreau is losing his marbles at the restaurant critic, telling him that the perfect Chocolate Lava Cake entails placing a square of chocolate into the centre of the cake, so the centre melts while the outside cooks; and not simply undercooking the cake so the centre remains raw?! That’s precisely how I feel about brownies. I find that most recipes recommend undercooking brownies to ensure they are chewy and fudgy. While that method certainly works, I’d much rather have brownies that are completely cooked yet gooey, and this recipe does just that! Baked for a total of 40-45 minutes, these Brownies don’t have a raw crumb in their body!
Thick, for the win!
What I love most about these brownies is that they are dense, yet not in the least bit cakey. I hate when brownies bake to the point where they are cake, and boring at that. I’ve been guilty of a few batches of those myself. But with this recipe, you’ll get that lush, moist, weighty crumb every time. Hold a brownie in your palm and you’ll be mesmerized by how heavy and tall it is!
I give these brownies a sweeping 9/10! I love love love them! My mum was in awe, calling this the perfect brownie repeatedly. She appreciated the fact that these are cooked through as opposed to most brownies we’ve had, and I’m with her on that! The fiance – who is beyond excited that I’m doing a brownies series this year – couldn’t get enough! (And I know he’s going to ask for a repeat batch when he reads this!) My sweet cousin loves me just a tad bit more for bringing him homemade brownies while visiting (I adore edible gifts, and those cheeky smiles they set off on the receiver’s face all the time).
The only box that isn’t ticked by these brownies is that gorgeous glossy top, which makes them not-so-photogenic. The food photographer in me struggled with this, but I quickly decided to celebrate their dark, brooding intensity and grandiose through my clicks. Let me know if I’ve done justice to my vision!
These brownies are heaven! And I mean it when I say you’ll be missing out if you don’t give this recipe a whirl. Even though I will be trying several brownies recipes over the coming months, I know I’ll keep going back to this recipe for decades, and I hope you do too! ❤
Want to Pin This recipe for later? Here you go…
Psst… If you’d like to, you could come check me out on Pinterest! I pin a tonne of fun stuff – chocolate, lots of dessert, easy weeknight recipes; and home decor.
Also, for regular updates on what’s happening in The Foodscape kitchen, follow me on Instagram at @thefoodscape! You’ll love all the deliciousness there, I promise! ❤