Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Laura's Delicious Brownies

With Small Hope being closed for annual renovations and maintenance the live-on staff have been taking turns getting creative and making delicious dinners for everyone to enjoy. One of our divemasters Laura has been honing her baking skills to the delight of all the staff who have been testing her cakes, cookies and most recently her brownies! Now we are sharing the recipe so you can enjoy them as well.

Prep Time: 30 minutes | Bake Time : 30-35 minutes
1¼ cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
11 ounces dark chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 cup (8 ounces) unsalted butter, cut into 1-inch pieces
1½ cups granulated sugar
½ cup packed light brown sugar
5 eggs, at room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter the sides and bottom of a 9×13-inch glass or light-colored baking pan. Line the pan with parchment paper.
2. In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, salt, and cocoa powder together.
3. Put the chocolate, butter and instant espresso powder in a large bowl and set it over a saucepan of simmering water, stirring occasionally, until the chocolate and butter are completely melted and smooth. Turn off the heat, but keep the bowl over the water and add the sugars. Whisk until completely combined, then remove the bowl from the pan. The mixture should be room temperature.
4. Add the eggs one at a time and whisk until combined. Add the vanilla and stir until combined. You do not want to over-beat the batter here or the brownies will turn out more cake like. 
5. Sprinkle the flour mixture over the chocolate mixture. Using a rubber spatula (not a whisk), fold the flour mixture into the chocolate until just a bit of the flour mixture is visible.
6. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top. Bake in the center of the oven for 30 minutes, rotating the pan 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. Let the brownies cool completely, then lift them out of the pan using the parchment paper. Cut into squares and serve.
7. Store at room temperature in an airtight container or wrap with plastic wrap for up to 4 days.
1/2 cup butter, softened 
2 2/3 cups confectioners' sugar, sifted
1/3 cup half-and-half cream
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
3/4 cocoa powder
1. Cream the butter in a small bowl.
2. Blend in the cocoa powder (the amount desired for a light, medium or dark flavor), vanilla, confectioners sugar, alternately with the cream.
3. Beat with an electric mixer, until the desired texture is achieved.
Hope you enjoy them as much as we did!

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