Monday, February 17, 2014

Chocolate, Dark and Drinking, Makes Flourless Brownies


In my newly-adult, newly-baking days, I had a bit of a reputation where brownies were concerned. I would make them often and their fame spread across continents. When my cousins visited from the US and the UK during that period, they would ask me to bake brownies for them and I would. My baking days now are few and far between but I've never stopped loving brownies and love the idea of dark chocolate brownies after having made them once from a box mix. When I made these a couple of days ago, I could feel it in my bones that these moist, dark chocolate-drinking chocolate brownies would be a hit, and my bones were not wrong. They were cleaned out at work, and their numbers quite diminished when I got back home and checked the container in the fridge.

These days, the motivation to experiment comes more from a restless and guilt-induced funk to exhaust the ingredients groaning under the weight of their long wait in my kitchen rather than from an appetite or curiosity about something culinary. Very slowly, I am getting better at managing waste. I am still having to buy a few things to hasten the process of using up a few other things but this time I did not mind. I bought a slab of dark chocolate to finish my drinking chocolate. I know I will be making these brownies again. Very soon.

Recently, I cleaned out my kitchen shelves for a photo op for a 52-week project I did last year. With many sighs - of guilt and relief in varying measure - I threw away a few things. Maybe I hoped the drinking chocolate would be riddled with insects. It was not. It smelled heavenly and had not turned into a lump. While I like chocolate, I'm not a fan of it in liquid form. As it happens in my case with long-unused stuff, I do not recall why I bought the drinking chocolate. Probably because it is reputed to be a soporific, and I am a raving insomniac.

I have been thinking of flourless brownies for a few months now. Every recipe I read till my patience ran out suggested almond meal. I have made flourless cakes with it earlier but some reports about enzymes in raw almonds interfering with digestion made me wary. Moreover, as I do not get almond meal but have to make it myself, and that translates into more labour, I kept looking for ways to make brownies that used drinking chocolate as a replacement for flour and almond meal. I did not find any soon enough.

So I just launched into it myself and started looking for recipes which were close. I found this. I had all the ingredients, including the coconut oil. I was not too sure about the coconut oil though I was open to using it. One resource on the Internet said the oil had to be used in solid form, but that it should not solidify by being refrigerated. The recipe, and many other coconut oil-in-brownie recipes, called for the fat to be melted along with the chocolate. So what was I to do?

I searched for butter as a replacement for coconut oil in baking. And found out that it had to be browned before it could be used because a large part of butter is water. So I browned it, strained it and set about making the brownies.

Here's how I made the brownies:

Ingredients:

Dark chocolate chunks: Just over 1 cup
Butter, browned: Over 1/2 a cup, less than 3/4th cup
Eggs: 5 (The ones I used were small)
Sugar: A little under 1 cup
Drinking chocolate: 1 cup
Salt: 1/2 tsp
Irish Cream: 2 or 2.5 tsp

Method:

Brown the butter and set aside.

Melt the chocolate in the microwave on high for 3 minutes.

Add the butter to the chocolate and mix it lightly, it will continue to melt.

Whisk the eggs and the sugar.

Gradually, add the chocolate-browned butter mix.

Now add the drinking chocolate in ladlefuls, folding it into the mixture after every addition.

Add the salt and Irish Cream, mix.

Bake in a preheated oven at 180 degrees C for 20-25 minutes until a knife/fork/toothpick/anything else inserted in the centre comes out clean.



15 comments:

  1. flourless brownies look very yumm.. First time here. Nice space. Glad to follow you. Do visit mine if you find time.

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    1. Hi Nandoo, or should I call you Lisha? Thanks for visiting. Let me know if you try these.

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  2. These look really nice, Sra. Did it smell eggy with 5 eggs in it or was that smell masked by the drinking chocolate and cocoa?

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    1. Not at all, Jay. In fact, a colleague was saying it was so chocolatey that it needed something sour to cut it. I suppose all that chocolate overwhelmed the eggs.

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  3. this looks really good... especially since it is really chocolaty...
    http://sweettoothraf.blogspot.com

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  4. Are you trying to give me a heart attack, when i saw chocolate in your blog i had to look twice to see if it is yours :-)
    And then you tell i do too much stpes to make a dish, look at eyou making your own brown butter. Do you think i can use cacao powder than drinking chocolate. Brownies look really moist and yumm. Wish i had them right now.

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    1. Finla, :-D
      Kneading is not something I can do so when you make all those elaborate breads and pastries, I am full of awe. Brown butter was hardly a step, I just had to melt it.
      I suppose you can use cocoa, but you'll have to use more sugar. Drinking chocolate has a lot of sugar in it, and the amount I used was just right.

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    2. will try to make them with cacao, unless at the last minute i change my mine and make with drinking chocolate ( which i think i don't have anymore) don't buy them as i don't drink milk and shyama was th eone who used to drink them when she stayed full time home.

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  5. cant believe they are flour-less !

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    1. They are, Renu :) I checked the ingredients list on the drinking chocolate tin too!

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  9. These look sooo delicious. I love how you have added Irish Cream :-)

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