Thursday, 16 January 2014

Ellie's Favourite Chocolate Raspberry Brownies

There is something so dangerously moreish about these brownies - my eldest's favourite! The raspberries stop the brownies from being too rich and add a delicious fruity zing.I love them best when they have firmed up in the fridge.

200g dark chocolate 50-70% cocoa solids (not too high a % or the brownies will be too bitter)
150g unsalted butter
200g light, soft brown sugar
4 large eggs
75g plain flour
25g cocoa
200g fresh raspberries (or thawed frozen) - any similar berries will do - I have done this with mulberries and blackberries. It works best with berries that have a little acidity to them.
100g white chocolate
icing sugar to dust

Heat oven to 180C (160C in my fan oven). Melt the butter and dark chocolate together. I do it for 4 minutes on high in the microwave (1000 watt). Don't be tempted to stir the mixture until the butter and chocolate have completely melted and then do it very gently. Watch them carefully in the microwave - the chocolate burns easily and the whole thing can separate and go lumpy and inedible.

Leave to cool a little whilst you measure out the flour and cocoa and sift. Usually I don't bother with sifting flour anymore, we don't get flour weevils here (!) but with cocoa it is vital to ensure no yucky floury lumps in the baked cake.

...and then, whilst the chocolate continues to cool, whisk the eggs and sugar together until pale and very thick - like whipped cream, I do it for 3-4 minutes in my Kitchen Aid.

Now add the melted chocolate to the eggs gently.

Then fold in the flour and cocoa, don't beat too hard or you'll lose some of the air you've got into your eggs, seeing some remnants of flour like this is fine:
Next grease and line with baking parchment a 23cmx 23cm baking tray and fill with half the mixture, then dot the raspberries over the top of the mixture.
Spoon the rest of the mixture over the top of the raspberries, it doesn't have to be perfect, some raspberries can be peeping through the mixture.
Now chop the white chocolate into fairly large chunks. I always make the mistake of chopping them too small and then they melt into the mixture on baking and I lose the "crunch" which provides texture to something that could be too rich and dense without it.

Finally, pop the tray into the oven for 30 minutes. When cooked it should have a slight wobble in the middle and the top will look cracked, with the sides coming away from the edges. Leave to cool then dust with icing sugar and cut into squares. I like to keep them in the fridge.
Enjoy (as quickly as you can - they won't last long!)

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