About a month ago, the newest version of the Baked cookbooks – Baked Occasions – came out. The recipes in the Baked cookbooks are some of my favorites, and luckily I had pre-ordered this latest one so I got it right on the release date! It was gorgeous as expected, and I couldn’t wait to dive in and make some things. I really love the way the book is laid out – it follows the calendar year, and provides recipes for all kinds of holidays, from the usual suspects (e.g. Christmas and Valentine’s Day) to some lesser known occasions such as World Nutella Day (how could you go wrong?) and Julia Childs’ birthday (salted caramel soufflé anyone?). Last week I finally got around to making these brownies – in the book they were slated for Halloween and topped with royal icing pumpkins and skulls, but some simple rainbow nonpareils turn these into an any day treat.
The Baked brownie and its many variations are always fantastic, and these were no exception. I have to say, I’m not sure I could taste the malt powder, but that didn’t make them any less delicious. They are super rich and super super fudgy – just the way I like them Just be sure to cut your pieces small! Or don’t – go big or go home, right?
For the brownies:
- 1 1/4 cups (160 grams) all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup (70 grams) malted milk powder
- 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 6 ounces (170 grams) milk chocolate, coarsely chopped
- 4 ounces (115 grams) dark chocolate, coarsely chopped
- 1 1/2 sticks (12 tablespoons, 6 ounces) unsalted butter, cut into 1-inch cubes
- 1 cup (200 grams) granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup (110 grams) firmly packed light brown sugar
- 5 large eggs
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
For the ganache:
- 6 ounces (170 grams) dark chocolate, coarsely chopped
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
To make the brownies, preheat the oven to 350ºF. Line a 9×13-inch baking pan with parchment paper, leaving an overhang on the edges as a “sling” to remove the brownies later. Butter the parchment paper or spray lightly with cooking oil.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, malted milk powder, cocoa powder and salt; set aside. Melt both chocolates and the butter in a double boiler, or a large heatproof bowl set over a pot of simmering water. Stir occasionally until completely melted and smooth. Turn off the heat but leave the bowl on top of the hot water. Add both sugars, whisking until completely combined, then remove the bowl from the double boiler. The mixture should now be approximately room temperature.
Add three eggs to the chocolate mixture and whisk gently until just combined. Add the remaining 2 eggs and whisk again until just combined. Fold in the vanilla extract. Do not overbeat the batter at this point, or the brownies will be cakey.
Sprinkle the flour mixture over the chocolate. Using a rubber spatula, fold the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until there is a small amount of flour still remaining. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and smooth out the top. Bake, rotating halfway through the baking time, until a toothpick inserted into the center of the brownies comes out with a few moist crumbs sticking to it – approximately 30-35 minutes. Remove the brownies from the oven and place the pan on top of a cooling rack until completely cooled.
Once the brownies have cooled, make the chocolate ganache. Place the chopped chocolate in a heatproof bowl, then heat the cream in a small saucepan over medium heat until steaming. Pour the heavy cream over the chocolate and allow to sit for 1-2 minutes. Stir until smooth. Pour the warm ganache over the brownies in the pan and smooth out the top with an offset spatula. Top with sprinkles at this time if desired. Allow the ganache to sit at room temperature for 10 minutes, then refrigerate for an additional 15 minutes to set.
Use the parchment sling to remove the brownies from the pan, then cut into squares with a sharp knife. Freezing the brownies for 30 minutes first may make them easier to cut.
Yield: 1 9×13-inch pan of brownies (I cut 28 brownies from the pan; the book recommends 36-48)
Source: Baked Occasions