28 March 2011

Brownie Bake-Off: Basic or Bombshell?

Dear Lissy,
I'll choose a quality piece of dark chocolate over almost anything else on a dessert cart.  But if brownies are offered, I go weak in the knees.  I like my brownies dense, chewy, fudgy, and chocolaty...no fluffy contenders accepted.  These two recipes are my favorites.

The first, Basic Brownies, are almost as simple as a mix, but have the distinct homemade flavor we love.  Basic brownies are great frosted or as a base for ice cream, but usually get eaten straight from the pan around here.  

Basic Brownies
adapted from Quick Cooking


  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup baking cocoa
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • eggs
  • 1 cup canola oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup (6 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips


  • In a large bowl, beat the first seven ingredients. Pour into a greased 13-in. x 9-in. baking pan. Sprinkle with chocolate chips.
  • Bake at 350° for 25-27 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool in pan on a wire rack. Yield: about 3 dozen.

The second brownie recipe is pure seduction.  These are my preferred birthday treat (hint, hint).  When only a rich, decadent, fudgy brownie will do, reach for...

Bombshell Brownies
from allrecipes.com
1 cup butter, melted
3 cups white sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
4 eggs
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Lightly grease a 9x13 baking dish.
Combine the melted butter, sugar, and vanilla in a large bowl. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each, until thoroughly blended.
Sift together the flour, cocoa powder, and salt. Gradually stir the flour mixture into the chocolate mixture until blended. Stir in the chocolate morsels. Spread the batter evenly into the prepared baking dish.
Bake in preheated oven until an inserted toothpick comes out clean, 35 to 40 minutes. Remove, and cool pan on wire rack before cutting.

Mom's Notes:

  • Notice that neither of these recipes have baking soda or powder.  The egg is the leavening.
  • Toasted walnuts are a yummy addition to either recipe.
  • Our family likes brownies just slightly undercooked.  If you're making them for another family, consider giving them an extra minute or two in the oven.
  • To ship brownies to a college kid or friend, bake them in a disposable pan, cool, place a plastic knife on top of the brownies, and seal well with foil.  DO NOT CUT or remove from the pan.  They fit, pan and all, in the priority cardboard mailer.  I usually have to add a couple of extra minutes to the baking time with the disposable pans.
  • It is imperative that the person you marry like the opposite part of the brownie.  If you like middles, he needs to be an edge guy.  If you like edges, be sure you marry a middle man.  This prevents years of fighting.
Happy Baking!

1 comment:

  1. those bombshell brownies look divine. Brownies are one thing I hardly ever make because of the eggs (they are super hard to make egg free) but I do love them!