Foolproof Brownies

My eldest son studies in a boarding school. There is a night out once a month when parents can go and meet teachers and take out their sons for a night. My husband had a last minute plan to go this month and I quickly got down to making these wonderful brown and chocolaty delights. My son loves brownies, especially this particular recipe and it is something that he too has made a number of times (needing help to melt the chocolate). This is kind of like one of our all time favorites. 13432313_10154560479946564_1024109094171989293_n

This recipe is from a book gifted to me by one of my aunts on my wedding. At that point of time, and even today for that matter, I make my own self-rising flour so if you do not have it at home, just follow the instructions at the bottom. Also, all ingredients are given by weight as this is very precise.

A Brownie according to Wikipedia is a ‘square baked desert something in between a cake and a cookie’. Well, yes. It is a cake and it is not a cake. You can have it by itself or with chocolate sauce and ice cream. You can have it straight from a box kept at your desk as you type or you can have it elegantly with tea. You can serve it cool or you can warm it up before you serve it (in case you are having it with ice cream). And of course they are cut into squares. the one most important point of difference between a cake and a brownie for me is the ratio of sugar and flour used. In a brownie, the amount of sugar is almost double the flour. This is the thing that adds that crust as well as the gooeyness to a brownie. Nuts are optional for many but for me, walnuts are a must. There are raisins in this recipe but if you don’t like them, just take them out and replace with more walnuts

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My then 9-yr-old with his first batch of Brownies

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Ingredients:

150 gm butter
125 gm dark chocolate. You can use cooking chocolate.
300gm fine sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
4 eggs
150 gm self-rising flour
90 gm chopped walnuts
60 gm raisins

Method:

Grease and line two square pans if they are small (8- 9′ square) or one if big.

Melt together the butter and chocolate in the microwave. One and a half minutes are enough. Stir and if you need more, give another 30 secs but not more. The traditional and best way to do this is over a bowl of boiling water continuously stirring, but for me the one and half minute in the microwave is perfect. Anyway, add the sugar and vanilla extract to this melted chocolate and beat well till smooth. Beat in eggs one at a time, beaten. Add shifted self-rising flour and fold well. Take a spatula to clean the sides. Add the nuts and raisins and fold well.

Pour the batter into the tin and bake at 180 deg C for 35-40 minute. If the centre is wobbly, it’s not done. A good brownie won’t give you a clean toothpick in the toothpick test. The top is supposed to be crusty, flaky.

Cut it into squares. If you want, you can sprinkle the top with icing or confectioner’s sugar.

For Self-rising Flour: Add 1 tsp baking powder, 1/4 tsp baking soda and 1/2 tsp salt to 1 cup of all purpose flour.

 

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