People tell me these are the best brownies they’ve ever had. I watch responsible adults turn into five-year-olds at the sight of them. Brownies may have nothing to do with my usual blog themes, but since I just finished a long semester—and on the Summer Solstice!—I can’t think of any better way to celebrate than dark chocolate brownies, crisp on the outside and nearly runny on the inside.
The secret to these brownies lies in the method as well as the ingredients, so here, just for you, are all my brownie secrets. (And yes, I made the plate too.)
Brownies to die for
- 7 ounces (or squares) semisweet chocolate
- 2/3 cup butter
- 1 2/3 cup sugar
- 3 eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 1/4 cups flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt (or a little less)
- 1 cup chopped walnuts
Notes on the ingredients
- I use Ghirardelli semisweet chocolate chips. Of all the chocolates I’ve tried, Ghirardelli provides the most complex dark chocolate flavor for this recipe.
- You can use unsweetened baking chocolate. If so, use 4 ounces of unsweetened chocolate and increase the sugar to 2 cups.
- Butter, of course. No cheating.
- Eggs: 3 eggs (instead of 4, as in the original version of this recipe) give the brownies a chewier texture. The extra egg would turn them a little cakey.
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Melt the chocolate and butter in a double boiler. I’ve never had a double boiler, so I use a small metal mixing bowl perched on top of a saucepan with some water in it.
- Mix the sugar, eggs, and vanilla.
- Add the melted chocolate-butter mixture.
- Stir together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Add to the wet ingredients.
- Fold in the walnuts.
- Spread in a greased, floured 9 x 13-inch pan.
The secret to a crisp exterior with a nearly runny interior is in the baking.
- Bake 10 minutes @ 400 degrees. (To crisp the outside.)
- Turn oven down to 325 degrees, and bake 10 to 15 minutes more.
- Take the brownies out before they’re done! Here’s how to recognize the perfect baking moment: The batter will puff up as it bakes then slowly recede. Take the brownies out AFTER they reach the highest puff but BEFORE they have gone down all the way. If you wait until the puff is gone, you’ll have dry instead of moist brownies.
Eat as many as you can before they cool.