If there's one thing I know it's chocolate. While I'm not too proud to admit I'm a full blown chocolate snob, I'm also not blind to my very real and palpable love for simpler desserts. Without a doubt my favorite part of a summer picnic is the brownies. Is there a more satisfying dessert? Sure, but only if you're referring to the corner piece of the brownie tray. But you see, this is sort of like therapy for a nutritionist. My love for brownies conflicts with my knowledge of the devastating consequences of too much sugar...but there are times when sometimes you have to simply meet people in the middle. So below is a recipe for brownies that has a LOT of sugar.
I adapted this recipe from Cook's Illustrated when my now sister in law requested brownies for her bridal shower, with the requirement of them being gluten free. I present this recipe to you, with the challenge of making it healthier. You can use my conversion chart to play around with this! Try agave nectar or mashed banana in place of some or all of the sugar...coconut oil for the vegtetable oil...applesauce for the eggs or butter...
Just try making it your own!
1/3 C Dutch-processed cocoa
½ C plus 2 tablespoons boiling water
2 oz unsweetened chocolate, finely chopped
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted
½ C plus 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 large eggs
2 large egg yolks
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 ½ C sugar
1 ¾ C Gluten-free flour mix (see my substition solutions page)
1 teaspoon xantham gum
¾ teaspoon table salt
6 oz bittersweet chocolate, cut into ½ in pieces
½ C walnuts or pecans – your choice
1. Adjust oven rack to lowest position and heat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 13 x 9 in baking pan.
2. Whisk cocoa and boiling water together in large bowl until smooth. Add unsweetened chocolate and whisk until chocolate is melted. Whisk in melted butter and oil (mixture may look curdled). Add eggs, yolks and vanilla and continue to whisk until smooth and homogenous. Whisk in sugar until fully incorporated. Add flour and salt and mix with a rubber spatula until combined. Fold in bittersweet chocolate.
3. Scrape batter into prepared pan. Lick bowl. Bake about 38-42 minutes. Transfer pan to wire rack and let cool completely, about 1 ½ hours.
4. Cut and serve.