October 3, 2008

Chocolate Stout Brownies

With the economy quickly melting into a giant puddle of Velveeta, one must learn to cut corners. One must begin tightening one's belt for the difficult times that lie ahead. One must acquire the skills to kill two birds with one stone. Or four squirrels with one stick. Or 7 hot dogs with one gag. One must gather in the fine leathery reins of exorbitant spending and eat said reins, diamond studs and all. If one is not careful, one will be forced to eat oneself. One does not like the sound of that one bit.

Okay, it's time to get real with oneself--er, myself. When it comes to buying food, I find it hard to cut corners. I find it hard to sink my teeth into leathery reins when such things like dark chocolate, chocolate stout, and white chocolate exist in this world. Oh--and Dutch-processed cocoa. And semi-sweet chocolate chips. And butter. Oh my...

Call me crazy. Call me naive. But since I only have one life to live, I make it a point to indulge from time to time in my favorite treats. On any given Sunday morning, for example, you can find me munching on truffles, caviar, and saffron-infused creme brulee in my baroque-inspired gazebo.

Well, maybe my indulgences are not that extreme. I do, however, enjoy a good dark beer from time to time. And I find it hard to shy away from purchasing a good bar (or 10) of dark chocolate.

Could my obsession with chocolate and beer--an obsession made possible, as of late, by a plastic card--be the cause of this current economic crisis? Maybe, and for that, America, I am sorry. However, will a chocolate stout brownie suffice as a bailout? Run it by those guys in the House, and then let me know. In the meantime, I'll put my oven on preheat.

Below is my recipe for Chocolate Stout Brownies, stolen/adapted from the blog A Mingling of Tastes. The only change made to the original recipe (which was adapted from various online recipes) was this: Mingling's recipe calls for Guinness, and my version calls for Young's Luxury Double Chocolate Stout. Any stout beer will work...but why refuse to add another layer of chocolate to this chocolately dessert?!

Chocolate Stout Brownies:

1 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup unsweetened natural cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into cubes
8 ounces dark bittersweet chocolate, chopped
4 ounces high quality white chocolate, chopped
4 large eggs, at room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
1 1/4 cup Chocolate Stout beer, at room temperature
3/4 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a 13 x 9-inch baking pan with nonstick foil (or regular foil coated with nonstick spray); or, use a nonstick pan coated well with nonstick spray.

2. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa and salt; set aside.

3. Melt the chocolate in a medium saucepan. Combine the dark chocolate, white chocolate and butter. Over low heat, stir until chocolate and butter is melted and combined. Set aside.

4. Combine the eggs and sugar in a large bowl and mix on high speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add melted chocolate in two additions, beating on medium speed until combined. Add flour mixture in two additions, beating on medium speed until combined. Add one-third of the beer and whisk until combined. Repeat two more times with remaining beer.

5. Pour brownie batter into prepared pan. Sprinkle chocolate chips evenly over top. Bake for 23 to 27 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean (mine took exactly 25 minutes). Cool completely in pan, cut into 24 squares and serve. These are excellent eaten within 24 hours (possibly longer; I’m not sure), and they freeze very well.

(Pictures to come!)


cormac norwich said...

You have a gazebo!??!?! Let's break it in and indulge when I come over. Stout brownies sound deeee-lish.

Paul Allor said...

Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm, beeeeeeeeer

Anonymous said...

We have eaten these brownies and they are delicious!!

E & J