Brownies are a classic American dessert. It is mostly presented as a square baked dessert. Baked in a square pan, it is sliced into square bars and can come in different textures. It is supposed to be a cross between a cake and a cookie in texture. However, there are brownies that are fudgy, chewy, or cakey, depending on whether you add cooking chocolates, cocoa or how much leavening agent you add.
From the Wiki and other sources that talk about the Brownie History, it is said that the brownie was developed in the United States at the end of the 19th century and popularized in the U.S. and Canada during the first half of the 20th century.
Depending on its density, it may be either fudgy or cakey and may include chocolate chips, nuts, or other ingredients. A variation made with brown sugar and chocolate bits but without melted chocolate in the batter is called a blonde brownie or blondie. While I have a huge list of brownies already posted, I felt I never really bothered about the history and the science behind the dish till date. I have always preferred a fudgy brownie, however many of my recipes have been cakey as well. Check out the Brownies already shared in Cooking 4 all Seasons and here.
Brownies are a standard dessert menu, where warm brownies are served with ice cream, topped with whipped cream, or sprinkled with powdered sugar and fudge. When serving plain, these are common lunchbox treats.
Before zeroing on Brownies, my initial picks were either Broa de milho and Basboussa, which has been on my todo list for so long. I guess it has to go back to the list for a while now. Some of the other Bs I had on the list were Baguette, Bara Brith, Barmbrack, Borodinsky bread, Bush bread. I had to drop checking out these as I wasn’t in a position to bake bread.
Today is B for Brownies from the United States.
Ever since I decided I would be making a classic brownie, I have been reading so much on the history and how it has evolved over years.
This is also my first ever dish that I have baked 3 times in a row because I didn’t get the right texture. All the attempts were immensely hit with my kids. However, I have not been satisfied. Even now, with this current measurement, I am not 100% satisfied with the texture. Today’s measurement gave me a slightly cakey crumb. I am looking at thick squares, that are also fudgy, gooey, yet holds its shape. The first thing I realized was that I do not have a smaller square pan. The measurement I have been experimenting has been with a bake that results in 1 to 1.5 inch brownie. So I need to get a smaller pan.
If I was looking at a regular recipe, I won’t have had any trouble. I am trying to recreate the exact texture with an eggless concept. Since in a brownie, there is a hardly any leavening agent added, egg works as a leavening agent as well. So when I am removing the eggs, I need to add in a substitute that works well. I have tried with Commercial Egg Replacer, Apples, Yogurt etc. Each one turned out different.
Today’s Brownie had Egg Replacer as the substitute and it turned out slightly cakey in texture. I am not 100% satisfied with it but have to go ahead with sharing the recipe. I felt the ones with apple was the best in texture, as apple will aid in both enhancing the taste and the leavening role.
Since I was looking for a classic brownie recipe, I wanted to try the Katharine Hepburn’s Brownies. This recipe is such a no fuss classic recipe. In the original recipe, I read that it really yields a rich and gooey brownie. However, with egg replacement, the texture changes.
Also with almost 2 cups of cooking chocolate, only 1/4 cup flour is used, but the butter was almost 1/2 cup which resulted in too much butter, that the brownie wouldn’t set at all. I reduced it to 1/4 cup butter, I think I might need to a bit more flour next time, along with apples.
So you see, instead of going ahead with the other bakes, I have spent a precious amount of time, redoing this brownie so many times. Though my kids were super elated by the never ending brownie supply. I have almost emptied my cooking chocolate and chocolate chips.
In the ABC Bake around the World series:
Step by Step Pictures for baking Brownies
Brownies from United States – Eggless
1/2 cup Dark Chocolate Chips
2 tbsp Cocoa powder
1/4 cup Butter unsalted
2 tbsp Egg Replacer mixed with 6 tbsp water for 2 eggs
3/4 cup Sugar
1/2 cup All Purpose flour
2 tsp Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips
1/2 tsp Baking Powder
Pinch of salt
Preheat the oven at 185C.
Mix the egg replacer with 6 tbsp water in a bowl and keep it aside.
Melt the dark chocolate chips in a microwave bowl for a minute. Using a spatula, blend well.
Then add the melted butter, semi sweet chocolate chips and stir well.
Next add the flour, sugar and combine everything together.
Add the egg replacer mix and stir to combine.
Finally, add the baking powder and ensure the mix is nicely mixed but do not beat the batter.
Pour this into a lined 8 x 8-inch-square baking pan. Bake 30 to 35 minutes.
Do not overbake; the brownies should be gooey. Let cool, then cut into bars.
The brownies should really come down to room temperature if you want to slice it properly.