The whole world loves chocolate brownies. That might seem like a sweeping statement but it is, in its very essence, true. Myself, I'm not a great fan of sweets and desserts preferring the savoury end of the spectrum but even I cannot resist. Years ago I met up with a friend of mine to go to the cinema one afternoon. Andrea makes great sweet things - desserts, cakes, everything. But I was a bit surprised when she arrived and handed me a cake tin - turned out it was full of brownies she'd made that morning. Amazing things. We ate half of them on the tube home.
A big fan in general of the Moosewood cookbooks, she had made the brownies using their famous recipe. She wrote it out for me - I still have her elegantly written page, albeit a bit chocolate smudged now. These days there is google - put moosewood chocolate brownies into the search engine and you get 20,000 results in less than a second. About the same amount of time it takes to eat one.
Moosewood Chocolate Brownies
250g/ 1/2 lb. butter (don't melt it)
125g/5 oz. 70% or above dark chocolate
1 3/4 cups (packed) light brown sugar
1 1/2 tsp vanilla essence
1 cup plain flour
Melt the chocolate in a bowl over a pan of simmering water. Let cool.
Cream the butter with the3 light brown sugar then add the eggs one at a time. Add the vanilla extract. Beat in the melted, cooled chocolate and the flour.
Spread into a buttered 9x13" baking pan. Bake 20-30 minutes at gas 5/350 degrees.
Optional: chopped nuts, or 1 tablespoon instant coffee, or 1 teaspoon grated fresh orange or lemon rind, or 1/2 teaspoon allspice or cinnamon, or a mashed over-ripe banana, or none of the above.
Yet another option: instead of uniformly blending in the chocolate, you can marble it. Add chocolate last, after the flour is completely blended in
I had been thinking of attempting a comparison test with Nigella's brownies - made a batch Sunday. Though fabulous I took them out of the oven too soon (following the warning that they would continue cooking while they cooled down) and had a lovely outside ring of fudgy brownies and an essentially liquid central lake, which firmed up in the fridge to be a sort of chocolate surprise which then liquified to chocolate ooze again at room temperature. The niece is in seventh heaven.