Thursday, May 28, 2009

Barefoot Bloggers: Absurd Brownies

I discovered that the Contessa put a warning label (outrageous) on this recipe for a reason. Unfortunately, I made this discovery after I added dark chocolate pieces, cayenne pepper and cinnamon resulting in my adaptation of the Outrageous Brownies recipe, which I am now calling Absurd Brownies. I am proud however, that despite the vulgarity of these coma-inducing beauties, I’m still “tasting” them three days after production. (I seriously need to get them out of my house!)

Inexplicably, I was going for an exotic Mexican chocolate. Don’t ask. I have very little experience with chocolate; I’ve never even made a ganache. To be honest, I was completely baffled by the selection of bittersweet, unsweetened, milk chocolate and dark chocolate “baking bars.” I never even found the Hersheys! (Was she referring to a regular Hershey’s chocolate bar?)

Nonetheless, like everything I do in life, I decided to jump right into this recipe as if I were a Belgian-born Chocolatier. I spent the better part of an afternoon (in heels) sweating over a hot stove stirring melted butter and chocolate, later realizing that I failed to add the 6 ounces of unsweetened chocolate, requiring a repeat of the melting process. My entire house smelled like a Chocolaterie for two days. It was truly decadent and I sensed these brownies were going to be rich. No kidding. Literally, the only person in my family who was able to down an entire piece was my sugar-fueled 3-year old niece who thinks she could live on confections alone.

Silly girl. I forgot to call my sister later that day to find out whether it stayed down!

Absurd Brownies
Adapted from Ina Garten’s Outrageous Brownies

1 pound unsalted butter
1 pound plus 12 ounces of semisweet chocolate chips
6 ounces of unsweetened chocolate (Don't forget!)
6 large eggs
3 tablespoons of instant coffee granules
2 tablespoons pure vanilla extract
2 1/4 cups of sugar
1 1/4 cups of all purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper (to preference)
1 1/2 teaspoons of cinnamon
6 ounces of small dark chocolate pieces ( I used 76% cacao)
3 cups chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 350
Butter and flour a full cookie sheet

Melt together the butter, 1 pound of chocolate chips and unsweetened chocolate in a medium bowl over simmering water. Once melted add the cayenne and cinnamon. Allow to cool slightly. In a large bowl, stir (do not beat) together the eggs, coffee granules, vanilla and sugar. Stir the warm chocolate mixture into the egg mixture and allow to cool at room temperature. In a separate bowl, sift the flour, baking powder and salt. Add to the chocolate mixture. Once cooled, break the dark chocolate bar into very small morsels and toss into the mixture along with 12 ounces of chocolate chips and walnuts. (The Contessa recommends to flour the chips and walnuts before tossing them so they don't sink to the bottom)

Bake for 20 minutes. Pull baking sheet out and tap it down on a hard surface a few times to get the air out from between the pan and the brownie dough. Bake for about 15 minutes more until the toothpick comes out clean. "Do not overbake!"

Happy Indulging.


chocolatechic said...

I love how you went for a Mexican flair.

These were just so fabulous.

Debinhawaii said...

I like your additions and your niece looks pretty happy with her brownie too. ;-)

Coco Bean said...

You are too funny! Absurd they were, great but absurd.

Suzie said...

What amazing inclusions. I never would have thought of throwing in cayenne, although I love chilli chocolate. Something to think about next time!

Meryl said...

This look so yummy! Haven't gotten to mine yet, but hopefully will this weekend!

Me! said...

Mexican flavors is definitely an interesting spin on these brownies. Plain brownies are good but they get boring. You definitely put an interesting spin on them!

TNF said...

oh! loving the modifications here. adding that to my list of things to try...