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Thursday, May 5, 2011

Homemade Brownies with Almonds

Brownies are a cross between a delicious decadent cake and a chocolate cookie. The best ones generally tend to melt in your mouth, filling it with all the chocolately deliciousness. I have eaten several brownies over the years (many from gourmet food shops) and  very few of them have met "the melt in your mouth" standard. I hadn't really ever baked these before, so when I finally decided to make them, I wanted to try a recipe that would be really good. Then I remembered an Alton Brown's brownie recipe that I had filed away sometime ago.  So, I dug it up and finally baked the brownies. I made a couple of changes and added in some almonds. The end result was absolutely delicious! I shared the brownies with a few friends, who then asked for the recipe. So here it is finally. I only had the ingredients list from the original recipe, so I have detailed the method that I used to make the brownies. 

1/2 cup all purpose flour/maida
11/4 cups unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup sugar
1 cup brown sugar
4 eggs
1 cup butter, melted
2 tsp vanilla essence
1 cup almonds (can substitute pecans/walnuts)

Preheat an oven to 300F. Grease and flour a square baking tin. Sift together the flour, salt and all purpose flour three times. In a bowl whisk together the eggs till they are frothy and then add the vanilla essence. Then add both the sugars to this mixture and mix well. Next add the butter. Then fold in the flour. Finally, fold in the cocoa powder and the walnuts/pecans. Pour this into the greased baking tin. Bake this for about 40 minutes. Insert a toothpick or sharp knife into the center and if it comes out clean, then the brownies are baked. Let it cool on a cooling rack and then remove it from the tin. Cut into equal squares. This makes 16 brownies.

It is important that you let the brownies cool so that they don't crumble. Using a cooling rack is very helpful so that air circulates around the baked good and condensation doesn't accumulate on the base of the brownie. Since, we are not using any baking soda/powder, we need to aerate the flour and the eggs enough so that the brownies get a light, melt in your mouth texture. So its important to sieve the flour and whisk the eggs till frothy. Also, don't over mix the flour and cocoa powder, but fold it in. These brownies are on the sweeter side. Experiment with a little less sugar (reduce both sugars by 1/4 cup each).


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