Stan's Famous (Almond Mocha) Brownies
Well, I said I'd engage in some testing of the recipes in the Epicure search for the perfect brownie article, and this is the first.
I decided to make Stan's Famous Brownies, which use cocoa powder rather than chocolate. This is a great recipe to make when you need to whip something up without having to make a trip to the shops. It contains things you're likely to have in your cupboards, and was a good one for me, deciding as I did at 10pm that I would start a brownie baking project without chocolate in the house. This is something I often do, and I should learn! I also wanted to make them as the day this article appeared in the paper, I was sitting in The European in Spring Street after work, reading it over a red wine and some aged cheddar croquettes (cheesy poofs!), and our waitress commented that she used to work for the Stan of the recipe's title and he personally showed her how to make the brownies. She reckoned they were pretty darn fine.
I didn't have walnuts, so used the almonds I had left over from a second batch of the fantastic granola recipe I use. I also decided to add a few tablespoons of rum to the batter. Rum can only make things good, surely. :-)
I even made the chocolate coffee icing to slather over the tops which makes them look pretty damn decadent. So far I've only tried a small sliver at fridge temperature, and it was very rich, dense and chocolatey. I would look forward to tasting them at room temperature, but I'm taking these to a cake stall tomorrow morning, and somehow I don't think I'll get a chance!
So, a pretty good, nearly perfect brownie recipe. Not quite as tall and thick as I'd like, but I had halved the recipe and a smaller tin could probably solve that issue.
Read on for the recipe:
Stan's Famous Brownies
From The Age Epicure, 21/6/05
Given the number of burrito-munchers who've eaten these brownies at the many Taco Bill's restaurants in which American Stan Teschke has an interest, the "famous" claim is hard to dispute.
1 cup unsalted butter
1 cup cocoa
2 cups sugar
4 large eggs
1 cup flour
1 cup chopped walnuts
1 tsp vanilla essence
1/4 tsp salt
· Preheat oven to 180C.
· Melt butter in double boiler, stir in cocoa. Remove from heat, then stir in sugar.
· Break eggs into mixture one at a time, then add flour and stir to combine.
· Add walnuts, vanilla and salt and stir to combine all ingredients.
· Pour into greased and lightly floured 18cm x 28cm baking tray.
· Bake for about 20-25 minutes.
Do not overcook.
Makes: about 18 large brownies.
6 tbsp butter, melted
½ cup cocoa
1/4 cup strong coffee
2 cups icing sugar
Combine all ingredients. Ice brownies while still warm.