Brownies are a classic American dessert; they can be fudgy or cakey, served plain, with nuts, frosting or powdered sugar, ice cream or whipped cream. The possibilities for making and enjoying a brownie are endless. I've decided that I need to find the BEST brownie recipe, one that is perfectly fudgy, glossy on top, with a bit of crunch and loaded with chocolate flavor.
Starting this endeavour I've realized quite quickly that there a million + 1 brownie recipes; some use melted chocolate others use cocoa powder, some include brown sugar others do not. Sifting through the various recipes I chose Nick Malgieri's "Supernatural brownies" as the first recipe.
These brownies were very good, definitely dense and fudgy. The top had a glossy look that aesthetically makes a brownie. However, I thought they lacked the perfect deep chocolate flavor that I'm looking for. Many recipes to try, the search will continue.
Lastly a little brownie history: rumor has it that the brownie originated at the Palmer House Hilton in Chicago in 1893. Bertha Palmer requested that the chef create a dessert that was smaller than a piece of cake and easily eaten from a boxed lunch. The Palmer House brownie contained walnuts and was topped with an apricot glaze. An interesting combination and supposedly this brownie is still on their menu today.
adapted from Nick Malgieri via David Lebovitz
2 sticks (1/2 pound) unsalted butter
8 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
4 large eggs
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup sugar
1 cup dark brown sugar, firmly packed
2 tsp vanilla
1 cup all-purpose flour
Butter and line a 13x9x2 inch pan, set aside.
1. Set the rack in the middle of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees.
2. Bring a saucepan of water to a boil and turn off heat. Combine butter and chocolate in a heat proof bowl and set over pan of water. Stir occasionally until melted.
3. Whisk eggs together in a large bowl, then whisk in the salt, sugars and vanilla. Stir in the chocolate and butter mixture, then fold in the flour.
4. Pour batter into prepared pan and spread evenly. Bake for about 45 minutes, until top has formed a shiny crust and batter is moderately firm. Cool in pan on a rack. Wrap pan in plastic wrap and keep at room temperature or refrigerated until the next day.
5. Cut away edges and cut into 2 inch squares.