Friday, January 14, 2011
Hello & Happy Friday to everyone!! :o) It’s Kylie here again with a Food Friday post! Yummmm!
I think it’s always a great idea to have a few “base” recipes that you can play around with. Sometimes I feel like keeping things plain and simple and then other times I might have a craving for a particular flavor or texture or might have something in my pantry that needs using up , know what I mean?!! – so I get a little creative and ADD to my base recipes! A friendly warning: It pays not to be overly adventurous when it comes to flavor combinations and other additional ingredients that might in fact throw out your baking proportions, unless you are prepared for what just might turn out to be a ‘failure’ or not quite what you were expecting. Although, a cooking failure is not always a bad thing!! LOL! I guess it’s a bit like scrapbooking – sometimes it’s best to keep a page nice and clean and other times you just want to add cluster after cluster and embellish to your hearts desire! Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t! That’s the great thing about this form of creativity – you are pretty much only limited to your imagination – same goes for cooking!
Today I’m sharing a chocolate brownie recipe with a twist. And because most of you are experiencing the chilliness of winter, I have included a rich Hot Chocolate recipe that’s super decadent! With both of these recipes, you can just stick to the base recipe and be just fine, or you can add my suggested ‘extra’ ingredients, or go nuts and add your own!
My Choc-Cherry brownie recipe is, I guess, like a simple brownie version of the classic Black Forest Cake. It makes a very moist, extra chocolately dessert when served with a spoonful (or more!) of whipped cream and a sprinkling of grated chocolate. Here is the recipe:
- 300 g (10oz) dark eating chocolate, chopped
- 150 g (5oz) butter, chopped
- 1 ½ cups (330g, 11 ½ oz) brown sugar
- 3 eggs
- ¾ cup (110g, 3 ½ oz) plain flour
- ¾ cup (140g, 5 oz) Choc bits/chips
- ½ cup (120g, 4 oz) sour cream
- 200 g (7 oz) pitted cherries (fresh or canned or preserved)
- Preheat oven to 180C (356F)
- Grease 19-21cm (7-9in) square cake pan, line with baking paper.
- Stir butter and dark chocolate in a saucepan over low heat until smooth. Allow to cool.
- Stir sugar and eggs into cooled chocolate mixture. Add sifted flour, choc bits and sour cream. Mix well.
- Pour mixture into pan and spread evenly.
- Top with cherries.
- Bake 35-40mins.
- Cool in pan before cutting.
- Serve with cream & chocolate curls.
Tips and other suggestions:
- You can use fresh cherries – any variety is fine, or canned black cherries, or, I think morello cherries are the best and add a nice sour note to cut through the richness of the chocolate.
- Absorb excess juice from cherries prior to adding to mixture by leaving them to sit on some absorbent kitchen paper towel while preparing other ingredients. This will prevent the finished product from being excessively moist.
- If you want to add a ‘kick’ to your dessert, soak the cherries overnight in some Kirsch liqueur, cherry brandy or your preferred liqueur. Again, drain off excess moisture with paper towel prior to baking.
- The cherries will slowly sink into mix as it cooks – this is normal.
- If you want a firmer more manageable product to eat as an ‘everyday’ treat, instead of a dessert, do not add the cherries or any other ‘juicy’ fruit to the base recipe. Instead you could add nuts or dried fruits, marshmallows, etc. as per the more traditional brownie recipes.
- For this recipe my extras are the dark Choc bits and cherries. Other flavor combinations could be, but really aren’t limited to:
- White Choc Bits (140g or 5 oz) and fresh or frozen raspberries (200g or 7 oz)
- Candied orange peel (50g or 2 oz) and pistachio nuts (140g or 5 oz)
- Dried cranberries (110g or 3 ½ oz) and macadamia nuts (140g or 5 oz)
- Walnuts (200g or 7 oz)
- Milk Choc bits (140g or 5 oz) and strawberry & vanilla flavored mini-marshmallows (about a cup)
- (Please note for the extra ingredients: measurements may need to be varied, so please use your own judgement as well as your own personal preference! And coarsely chopped pieces are best.)
Now, if you want an extra chocolate hit, you can also make this Hot Chocolate drink to serve with your brownies, or you can simply make it on its own. I like to use dark chocolate and add some spices too – but you’re welcome to go with whatever type of chocolate you prefer and the spices (especially the chili) are optional. Here is the recipe:
- 330 ml (11 fl. oz) milk
- 330 ml (11 fl. oz) pouring (single) cream
- 300 g (10 oz) chocolate of choice (dark, milk, white or any combination of the three)
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
- 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
- Combine milk, cream & spices in a heavy-based saucepan and bring to a simmer over low heat.
- Add chocolate and stir continuously until melted and smooth.
- Divide among 4 heatproof cups and serve with marshmallows.
This hot chocolate is very rich and quite thick to drink so I recommend just a small mug at a time. And the marshmallows are optional, of course!
I have created two recipe cards as a FREE download. I used the Shabby Shoppe French Toast recipe card templates and a collection of Shabby Princess digital kits (see the TOU in your download for more details). Please feel free to add these two new cards to your home recipe collection, and ENJOY!! :o) You can CLICK HERE to download them, or simply click the preview below!
Hope you’ve enjoyed reading through today’s recipes and have fun making them! And even more fun devouring them!! :o) (Sorry to all those that may have made a NO-chocolate New Year’s Resolution! Just close your eyes and wait for LOTW!! :o) Enjoy your weekend and we’ll be back here on Monday with another gorgeous Layout of the Week post! Until then, take care and Happy Scrapping!!! :o) And, if you missed it – be sure to check out SP’s launch of PROJECT SCRAP (posted yesterday – scroll down)!