Thursday, November 29, 2012

Chocolate Cherry Chunky Blondies

Posted by - Dorrie

The Have the Cake theme this month is brownies, and while I'm all about chocolate and brownies, sometimes, like I like my men, I like a good blondie...
Mike and Henry in the car
The blondies that I really love...
Dorie Greenspan's book "Baking: From my home to yours" has a lovely recipe for "Chewy, Chunky Blondies" that I adore.  Dorie's recipe includes practically everything in the pantry: chocolate chips, butterscotch chips, walnuts and coconut.  I've made it this way before (substituting pecans for the walnuts) and they are great, but I've also simplified this time, and added only dark chocolate chunks and dried cherries.  Yum!

Chocolate Cherry Chunky Blondies

2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 sticks (8 ounces) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
1 1/2 cups packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
6 ounces bittersweet chocolate chunks
1 cup dried cherries

(Dorie's original recipe has: 6 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chips/chunks, 1 cup butterscotch or Heath Toffee chips, 1 cup coarsely chopped walnuts, and 1 cup sweetened shredded coconut)

Preheat oven to 325 degrees and butter a 9-x-13 baking pan.  Place the buttered pan on a baking sheet.

Whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a bowl.

In a stand mixer bowl or bowl with a hand mixer, beat the butter until smooth and creamy.  Add both sugars and beat until well incorporated.  Add each of the eggs separately, beating after each and then add the vanilla.  Add the dry ingredients until incorporated and then add the remaining ingredients, using a spatula to mix. Add the batter to the buttered pan and spread evenly.

Bake for about 40 minutes until the blondies are light brown, and pull away from the edge of the pan.  Cool in the pan before cutting and devouring, preferably with ice cream...

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Baker's Chocolate Brownies

Posted by -Rhonda's Saucy Adventures

Recipe adapted from Cooks
 I looked for a recipe that called for Baker's chocolate, because that is what I had in my cupboard when I decided to bake. I made the cake-like version of this recipe and I don't think I will do that again. I give this 2 stars but hope the fudgy version is better. I am going to keep this recipe and give the fudgy brownie a try, because so many people gave this recipe 5 stars.
4 sq. Baker's unsweetened chocolate
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) butter
2 cup sugar
3 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
1 cup flour
1 cup chopped nuts, optional
1/2 cup chopped oreo cookies optional

1. Preheat oven 350.
2. Microwave chocolate and butter in large microwave bowl at high 2 minutes or until butter is melted. Stir until chocolate is completely melted.
3. Stir sugar into chocolate. Mix in eggs and vanilla until well blended. Stir in flour and nuts. Spread in greased 13 x 9 inch pan. 4. Bake 30-35 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out with fudgy crumbs. Cool in pan; cut into squares. Makes 24 fudgy brownies. Note: When using glass baking dish, bake at 325 degrees. For cake-like brownies, stir in 1/2 cup milk with eggs; use 1 1/2 cups flour.

Lemon Brownies

Posted by - bakingaddict

This is a really quick and simple recipe with lemons. I saw this on Me and My Sweets back in May this year and bookmarked it as I love lemon recipes. I made them in between packing so I couldn't find the right tin and used a foil takeaway container instead! It worked well though and although I didn't get a chance to try it, I was told it was delicious.

ready to go in the oven

lots of lemony glaze on top!

For the brownies
90g flour
150g golden caster sugar (I reduced it from the original amount so you may need to add more if you have a sweet tooth)
1/4 teaspoon salt
113g butter
2 eggs
2.5 teaspoon lemon zest (approximately 1.5 lemons)
2 tablespoons lemon juice

For the glaze
60g icing sugar
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 teaspoon lemon zest (approximately 1/2 lemon)

  • Preheat oven to 180C.
  • Add flour, sugar, salt and softened butter to a bowl and beat until combined.
  • In a separate bowl, whisk together egg, lemon zest and lemon juice.
  • Pour into the flour mixture and beat until smooth and creamy.
  • Pour mixture into a suitable baking dish and bake for about 20-25 minutes, or until golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center of the brownies comes out clean.
  • Allow to cool completely before glazing.
  • To make the glaze, mix all the ingredients together until smooth. You may want to add more lemon juice depending on the consistency required.
  • Spread glaze evenly on top of the brownies and add some lemon zest if desired.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Bacon-Bourbon Brownies with Pecans

Posted by - Gerri

I found this recipe in my Food and Wine cookbook. I love chocolate, bacon and of course, bourbon on occasion. What a great way to have all the flavors in one place. This recipe was developed by Kat Kinsman, managing editor of CNN’s Eatocracy.

The recipe was very easy to follow. I used pre-cooked Armor bacon that you finish off in the microwave, and substituted walnuts for the pecans.

These rich, intensely flavored brownies are the perfect combination of sweet, savory and salty. Chase with a cold glass of milk. You may have to stop yourself from eating the entire batch!

Bacon-Bourbon Brownies with Pecans
Active: Minutes
Total Time: 1 Hour, 40 Min
Servings: Makes 24 Brownies

1/2 cup pecans
1/2 pound sliced bacon
8 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
2 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped
1 stick plus 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 packed cup light brown sugar
3 tablespoons bourbon
4 large eggs
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1.    Preheat the oven to 350°. Line a 9-inch square baking pan with parchment paper, allowing 2 inches of overhang on 2 opposite sides. Spray the paper with vegetable spray. Spread the pecans in a pie plate and toast for about 8 minutes, until fragrant. Let cool, then coarsely chop the nuts.

2.    In a skillet, cook the bacon over moderate heat, turning once, until crisp, 6 minutes. Drain on paper towels and let cool; reserve 3 tablespoons of the fat. Finely chop the bacon.

3.    In a saucepan, combine both chocolates with the butter and stir over very low heat, until melted; scrape into a large bowl. Using a handheld electric mixer, beat in both sugars with the reserved 3 tablespoons of bacon fat. Beat in the bourbon. Add the eggs and salt and beat until smooth. Sift the cocoa and flour into the bowl and beat until blended.

4.    Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and sprinkle the bacon and pecans on top. Bake for about 50 minutes, until the brownies are set around the edges but slightly wobbly in the center; a toothpick inserted into the center should have some batter clinging to it. Transfer the pan to a rack and let the brownies cool completely. Lift the brownies out of the pan using the parchment paper. Cut into squares or rectangles and serve.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Chocolate & Redcurrant Brownies

Posted by - Maria

I wanted to make something easy. You know... To get things started with my "new kitchen"... Something that everybody in this house could eat... even Georgie's 93 year-old grandmother (her brain must look like soup from Alzheimer's, but amazingly her blood sugar is lower than mine!!!). 

I chose Brownies for Have the Cake. It's been a while since I stopped by Rena's blog. I made them gluten free because I still need to keep to my diet as much as possible. Walking everyday into a fully operational chef and pastry-chef school, you cannot imagine and I cannot describe what a temptation that is for me. 

Unfortunately, I did not have time for experimentation with a sugar and egg free version of this brownie, so I just kept out the main culprits, gluten and lactose. I replaced the pecans, with dried red currants, partly because I wanted to participate in this months Chocolate Party and partly because my biggest customer (the said 93-year-old grandmother), has no teeth!!! I soaked the dried currants in a couple of shot glasses worth of cherry liqueur to puff them up a bit. The recipe came together easily and the results were satisfying to all! So if you want a "kitchen warming" brownie recipe this is it!

Gluten Free Chocolate and Red Currant Brownies
Adapted from Every Day Food, June 2012
Prep time: 20 minutes
Total time: 50 minutes
Yield: 16 servings
85 gr unsalted butter, plus a bit more for buttering the pan
1/3 cup cornstarch, levelled
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon fine salt
340 gr dark chocolate
3/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
3 large eggs at room temperature
1 cup dried red currants, soaked for 30 minutes in 60 ml of cherry liqueur
Preheat your oven to 180 degrees C.
Butter a 20 cm square baking pan and like it with cooking paper, leaving about 5 cm of paper to hang on all sides - this will make lifting the baked brownie cake so much easier!!
In a medium bowl, whisk together cornstarch, cocoa powder, cinnamon and salt and leave aside. Melt the butter and chocolate in the microwave oven, using a large microwave-safe bowl or over a bain-marie (be careful if you go for the bain-marie that the boiling water in the pan does not come into contact with the bowl containing the chocolate and butter and that steam and water do not find their way into the melting chocolate!!)
When the chocolate and butter have melted, add the sugar and vanilla extract. Stir in the eggs, one at a time until absorbed.
Add the cornstarch mixture to the chocolate and eggs and stir vigorously until it becomes smooth. Drain the soaking cranberries - don't throw away the liquid, you can use it in another recipe or drink it and be happy :) and stir them into the mixture.
Pour the chocolate batter into the pan and smooth over the top.
Bake for about 30 - 35 minutes, depending on the oven - until a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out with a few moist crumbs attached.
Let it cool completely in the pan on a wire rack, then lift the cake and cut into 16 squares.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Black Bean Brownies

For the month of November, Have The Cake challenge was brownies and I immediately knew what I wanted to do- black bean brownies. 

Last time, I was very pleased with chocolate mint cake with red kidney beans.So why not brownies right? Even though I am trying to cut down on refined sugar to be acne-free someday,  its really hard to give up on sugar altogether. Blame that sweet tooth.

Incorporating beans into baked goods is a great way to cut down on fats, carbs, thus calories while adding lots of good nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, & fiber. 

My dough master was little hesitant about the "black bean" brownies in the beginning but you can probably guess what happened to the remaining brownies. Dough master & I devoured it over the movie- Meet Joe Black (a must watch). And I think he ate few more for breakfast too..

The end result was very moist, rich and adding almonds (or any nuts) gives some texture to the soft texture of this brownie. There is no after-bean taste at all whatsoever!!

Black Bean Brownies (recipe adapted from here)
yields: ~ 12 pieces

1-15.5 oz. can black beans, rinsed and drained
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon sugar
1/4 cup cocoa powder
3 eggs
3 tablespoons oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon instant coffee granules
unsweetened coconut flakes, chocolate chips ( I used semi-sweet, dark, and white chocolate), and chopped almonds

-Preheat oven to 350 F. 
-Place all the ingredients in a food processor or blender and blend until smooth. 
-Line 8 x 8 pan with parchment paper and pour the mixture.
-Top it with your choice of chocolate chips, nuts, and coconut flakes.
-Bake for 16-18 minutes or until the tooth pick inserted comes out clean.
-Allow it to cool then cut it into pieces then enjoy!  

Note: I used blender and the batter was runny. I would recommend using food processor and keeping the batter smooth rather than runny.  

Thursday, November 1, 2012

November Challenge: Brownies

Posted by - Rena

Hello fellow bakers! I hope all of you are safe after Hurricane Sandy. I live in NYC and we were hit quite hard. I was luckier than most in that I didn't lose power and wasn't flooded but most of my city was not so lucky. My heart goes out to everyone in Sandy's path.

Like everyone else in NYC who was ill equipped to deal with hurricanes - as we don't usually have them here - I ate. A LOT. I went to the store to get the "necessities" such as cupcakes and soda. Useless items in a true emergency but so tasty. Comfort food is key in this type of situation.

Our challenge this month is to make Brownies. Brownies are the ultimate comfort food. I visited my favorite bakery yesterday which had been closed all week due to the hurricane and they had trays and trays of brownies out. It made me smile.

You can make brownies or blondies. Put your spin on them! I'm thinking marshmallows... more comfort food!

Again, I hope all of you are safe and sound. Looking forward to see what you come up with this month.
photo from