Here in the city, when the wind blows in just the right direction at just the right speed, the scent of melting chocolate fills the air. The Blommer Chocolate Factory sits in Chicago’s River North neighborhood, but just about every part of town has been touched by its aroma. Its sweet!
Whenever I catch a waft, the urge to make homemade brownies overwhelms me. I just have to make brownies! No way around it! Fortunately, I found a ridiculously easy brownie recipe in a recent issue of Bon Appetit. Rather than melting unsweetened chocolate squares, the recipe calls for cocoa powder. It is a genius twist on a classic recipe, and I’ll never go back to the old way.
As an added bonus: the brownie batter is DELICIOUS. When Mack helps me bake a batch he takes the whisk and I take the bowl. Ha!
Homemade Cocoa Brownies
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into 1 inch pieces
1 1/4 cups sugar
3/4 cup Scharffen Berger natural unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
Preheat oven to 325°. Line an 8x8x2 inches glass baking dish with foil, pressing firmly into pan and leaving a 2 inches overhang. Coat foil with nonstick spray; set baking dish aside. (When I make this recipe, I grease the baking dish with coconut oil instead of non-stick cooking spray as the recipe suggests. I believe coconut oil is better for my health, my wallet and the planet.)
Melt butter in a small sauce-pan over medium heat. Let cool slightly. Whisk sugar, cocoa, and salt in a medium bowl to combine. Pour butter in a steady stream into dry ingredients, whisking constantly to blend. Whisk in vanilla. Add eggs one at a time, beating vigorously to blend after each addition. Add flour and stir until just combined (do not overmix). Scrape batter into prepared pan; smooth top.
Bake until top begins to crack and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with a few moist crumbs attached, 25-30 minutes.
Transfer pan to a wire rack; let cool completely in pan. Using foil overhang, lift brownie out of pan; transfer to a cutting board. Cut into 16 squares.
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