Thursday, September 1, 2011

Rich Fudge Brownies with Cherry

Sometime after my last post, this blog hit 1,000 viewers. I never had any real expectations for the blog, so I’m pleasantly surprised that people are showing any interest. In celebration of this milestone, I made my mother’s rich fudge brownies. I should probably warn you that something as exciting as an odd-numbered day is enough excuse to “celebrate” with these brownies. They’re rich and super gooey in the middle, with the thinnest layer of crispiness of the top. I believe the last time this brownie recipe made an appearance was in our church’s cookbook back in 1990. There may be a handful out there in possession of said book that have gotten to revel in this chocolate deliciousness. If you haven’t, your wait is officially over.

As with a lot of the recipes I’ve tried, I added something extra this time. I have been somewhat obsessed with cherries over the summer, especially after my luck with pairing them with scallops. I’ve seen some recipes popping up, such as here and here, that involve putting roasted cherries in the brownie batter. I tend to be a bit of a purist when it comes to chocolate. Sometimes caramel is ok, but I have no use for additions such as fruit or nuts of any kind. Sometimes a simple square of dark chocolate is perfection, and we all know it’s a bad idea to mess with perfection. That said, I finally decided to make an exception. I should probably note that my poor mother, who dislikes cherry, probably would not approve of my addition to the recipe.

I started by roasting a cup and a half of cherries that were pitted and halved. I mixed those with a couple teaspoons of sugar and spread them out on a baking sheet.

The cherries are then baked at 450 degrees for about 5-7 minutes. The cherries will start to release some juice. The main thing to watch for is that the sugar doesn't start to burn. Once they are out of the oven, you’ll want your temperature down to 300. This gave the cherries a chance to cool as the oven did.

As for the brownies, the ingredients are as follows:

• 1 cup butter (original recipe says oleo)
• 4 squares unsweetened baking chocolate
• 4 eggs (beaten)
• 2 cups sugar
• 1 cup flour
• 2 tbsp vanilla

Start by melting the butter and chocolate over medium-low heat. You’ll want to use a pan large enough to add the other ingredients also. Stir pretty consistently until melted.

Next, add the sugar, followed by the eggs. I add the eggs after the sugar to avoid scrambling them with the hot chocolate mixture. Add the flour, followed by the vanilla.

Stir in cherries or other desired mix ins. Pour into a greased 9x13 pan. Bake until done, which is usually about 40-45 minutes. I go by the toothpick test.

Now you know these brownies are serious because they call for two sticks of butter and two cups of sugar. I’m not sure if this is enough to make Paula Deen proud, but I think we’d at least get a nod of approval. This makes a large pan, so there’s all the more for you to addictively snack on share with your friends.

I'll end this post with a picture of my Helpers, who have not made an appearance on the blog in awhile. Desserts do not hold near the appeal that other dishes do, so they spent their time lounging in the sun and observing.

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