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Esurientes - The Comfort Zone

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Chocolate Cherry Brownies

Again with the chocolate and cherry?? Heh, well, theyr'e a good combination, and when I saw this recipe on Deborah's site, I immediately bookmarked it to make ASAP. I love brownies and I love bottled sour cherries. Combining the two? Why hadn't I thought of that before?!

This is definitely not a low fat recipe. It has a whole block of chocolate plus a bit more, a whole packet of butter plus a bit more and 5 eggs. Ahem. But as I was taking it for an Easter day brunch, I rationalised that it was a time to indulge and celebrate, particularly as we'd just spent a stupidly large number of hours in singing in church services during Holy Week.

I found the cooking time for this wasn't enough. I took the pan out after 25 minutes, left it to cool on the bench and slice it up when it was cold. To discover it was still liquid in the centre. Hmmmm. This may have been because I doubled the amount of cherries in the batter. So, I had to return them to the oven, already cut up for about 10 minutes. If you decide to double your cherries, watch your cooking time. And ensure the cherries are well drained. The liquid left behind makes a great drink mixed with soda water! I also reduced the amount of sugar to 300g because 400g sounded quite a lot! I think reducing sugar can have an effect on moisture absorbtion too.

Next time I would add some cocoa powder to the batter. Chocolate in brownies gives a great texture, but it lacks the intensity of flavour cocoa gives. I think the best brownies are made with a combination of the two, although I did discover a brilliant recipe from Cooking With Amy about 2 years ago, which only uses cocoa.
Read on for the recipe:

Chocolate & Cherry Brownies
From Green and Black’s Chocolate Recipes: Unwrapped - From the Cacao Pod to Muffins, Mousses and Moles

300 g unsalted butter
300 g dark chocolate (minimum 60%, broken into pieces)
5 large eggs
400 g granulated sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
200g plain flour
1 teaspoon salt
100 g of drained morello cherries (I used about 200g)

Grease a roasting or baking tray.
In a bowl (placed on top of a pot of boiling water) melt the butter and chocolate together until thick and creamy
Meanwhile beat together sugar, eggs and vanilla extract until thick and creamy. The mixture should easily coat the back of a spoon.
Once the butter-chocolate mixture has melted, remove from stove and beat into the egg mixture
Sift the flour and salt together, and add to the wet ingredients. Mix until mixture is well combined.
Drain morello cherries and fold into the brownie mixture.
Pour mixture into the tray and bake for 20 - 30 minutes at 180C
Once finished baking, allow to cool and cut into pieces.

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