Tuesday, 3 June 2008

Birthday Brownies - TWD


Happy Birthday Violet - My lovely youngest little chicken is 2 years old today and what a proud Mum I am! I have no idea where the last 2 years have gone but we have had lots of fun (and the odd tantrum along the way - not all from Violet!)

To be quite honest Violet didn't seem that impressed by these brownies but as far as brownies go these were good. As I have said in previous posts, I am just not that much of a chocolate cake fan but if I was these would be heavenly. These were really easy to make (although my raisins didn't set alight - The neighbours had a good laugh though watching us try on the BBQ), not too many ingredients and were eaten in super quick time.

The Scores:
Easy to make? - 8 out of 10
Ingredients - 9 out of 10 - I already had the rum in stock from previous TWD recipes
Taste - 8 out of 10

Would I make again - Possibly if someone requested brownies - I do like nuts in mine though!

Photo - Once again I would love to say it is my own work but St Cara came to the rescue (You should have seen my effort!)

Next week = Strawberry tarts chosen by the lovely Marie from A Year From Oak Cottage

French Chocolate Brownies
- makes 16 brownies -
Adapted from Baking From My Home to Yours.
Ingredients
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon cinnamon (optional)
1/3 cup raisins, dark or golden
1 1/2 tablespoons water
1 1/2 tablespoons dark rum
6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
1 1/2 sticks (12 tablespoons; 6 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature and cut into 12 pieces
3 large eggs, at room temperature
1 cup sugar
Getting ready: Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 300°F. Line an 8-inch square baking pan with foil, butter the foil, place the pan on a baking sheet, and set aside.
Whisk together the flour, salt and cinnamon, if you're using it.
Put the raisins in a small saucepan with the water, bring to a boil over medium heat and cook until the water almost evaporates. Add the rum, let it warm for about 30 seconds, turn off the heat, stand back and ignite the rum. Allow the flames to die down, and set the raisins aside until needed.
Put the chocolate in a heatproof bowl and set the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water. Slowly and gently melt the chocolate, stirring occasionally. Remove the bowl from the saucepan and add the butter, stirring so that it melts. It's important that the chocolate and butter not get very hot. However, if the butter is not melting, you can put the bowl back over the still-hot water for a minute. If you've got a couple of little bits of unmelted butter, leave them—it's better to have a few bits than to overheat the whole. Set the chocolate aside for the moment.
Working with a stand mixer with the whisk attachment, or with a hand mixer in a large bowl, beat the eggs and sugar until they are thick and pale, about 2 minutes. Lower the mixer speed and pour in the chocolate-butter, mixing only until it is incorporated—you'll have a thick, creamy batter. Add the dry ingredients and mix at low speed for about 30 seconds—the dry ingredients won't be completely incorporated and that's fine. Finish folding in the dry ingredients by hand with a rubber spatula, then fold in the raisins along with any liquid remaining in the pan.
Scrape the batter into the pan and bake 50 to 60 minutes, or until the top is dry and crackled and a knife inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Transfer the pan to a rack and allow the brownies to cool to warm or room temperature.
Carefully lift the brownies out of the pan, using the foil edges as handles, and transfer to a cutting board. With a long-bladed knife, cut the brownies into 16 squares, each roughly 2 inches on a side, taking care not to cut through the foil.
Serving: The brownies are good just warm or at room temperature; they're even fine cold. I like these with a little something on top or alongside—good go-alongs are whipped crème fraiche or whipped cream, ice cream or chocolate sauce or even all three!
Storing: Wrapped well, these can be kept at room temperature for up to 3 days or frozen for up to 2 months.

29 comments:

Engineer Baker said...

What a wonderful birthday treat! I'm sure that as she gets older she'll appreciate these things a bit more :)

Jules Someone said...

I'm with you on baking brownies. I'd rather use my ingredients for something else. Yours look lovely, though!

Sweet and Savory Eats said...

I like the powdered sugar finish. It contrasts nicely with the chocolate. Happy Birthday to your little one.

steph- whisk/spoon said...

looks good! happy birthday to violet!

Tammy said...

they look great - I didnt rate mine quite as highly as yours though. happy birthday to Violet!

PheMom said...

Happy Birthday to the little chick and mama! Great job on your brownies!

kim said...

happy birthday to violet! the brownies look great, glad they were a success :)

noskos said...

Well done, they look great!

Christine said...

Happy Birthday Violet! Such a pretty name. Brownies look delish!

Jess said...

Violet's a lucky girl, even if she doesn't know it yet. Nice brownies!

Sarah said...

Glad you liked the brownies and they seem like a great birthday treat!

Marie said...

Great looking brownies! What a wonderful Birthday Treat! I had to chuckle at the image of you out there trying to flame them on the barbeque!

Marie said...

PS> I love, LOVE your daughter's name!!! I would so have loved to name my girls after flowers!

Liliana said...

Lovely brownies! And what a lovely name you daughter has!

Amy said...

Your brownies look great. And I will say that I would have been laughing with your neighbors while you were trying to light the raisins/rum on the BBQ pit!

Mevrouw Cupcake said...

Flambéing raising on the BBQ?! Too funny!

Heather said...

Great job! They look delicious! I hope Violet has a wonderful birthday!

Annemarie said...

PERFECT B-Day treat!!

CB said...

Happy brownie birthday to Violet!
Clara @ I♥food4thought

Cafe Johnsonia said...

My little guy went crazy for these--he's almost 2. They look great! I'm sure they were enjoyed by all.

Jaime said...

good job! happy bday to violet :)

Dolores said...

Hoping Violet had the happiest of birthdays. Caitlin's right, as she gets older she'll learn to appreciate the beautiful things that emerge from your kitchen. Great job with these!

ostwestwind said...

I am with engineer baker, what a wonderful birthday treat. I bet she 'll develop a special palate.

Ulrike from Küchenlatein

Jayne said...

Happy Birthday, Violet!

Garrett said...

I absolutely agree - I'd add some nuts to this if I were to make it again.

Shari said...

I like your ratings! Great job on the brownies, and a happy birthday to Violet!
Shari@Whisk: a food blog

LyB said...

Happy belated birthday to your little one! These brownies were really delicious and yours look fantastic! :)

Chris said...

Fun birthday eats! Looks fabulous

BAKE-EN said...

I wish I was like you. I (unfortunately) love chocolate...I lost count on how many of these great brownies I ate. Happy birthday to your little one :)