Monday, 6 June 2011

Heading Off-Campus: My Last Dish to Close out the Academic Year

I don't know if I've elsewhere mentioned this on my blog yet, but... I'm heading to France in a few weeks! Needless to say, the food journey will be a plentiful one and one that I hope will be one of many connecting strands throughout the group I'll be traversing with. Of course, there is much more to say on this experience in subsequent posts but, so I can finally catch up and mark an official close to my past semester of posts, let me at least jot down my take on an otherwise (surprisingly) standard recipe: chocolate pudding brownies. Intrigued yet? After reading through a multitude of recipes (and by multitude, I mean about nearly a dozen), I've decided that either every other website is paying homage to one person's recipe or that recipe's been granted the eternal seal of approval. All of this is to say there's a general trend of ingredients and quantities out there in cyber space for homemade brownies, yet if you've read other posts throughout this blog you'll know my approach is anything but "general."

And so, for my dark chocolate pudding brownies, begin by creaming together 6 tbsp butter (room temp is definitely better) and 2/3 c granulated sugar until you get a consistency quite similar to wet sand. Sift into this creamed mixture 1/2 c all-purpose flour, 1 pkg chocolate pudding mix (i.e., just the powder; don't actually make pudding and incorporate), 1/2 tsp baking powder, 1/4 tsp salt, and 1 tbsp dark cocoa powder. Combine all of these ingredients until the consistency is reminiscent to broken up puppy chow. In a separate bowl, whisk together two eggs, 1/4 c whole milk, and 1 tsp vanilla, and then mix this very well into your puppy chow-like mixture.

After everything has been combined into a very smooth pudding-like batter, fold in two handfuls (more or less) semi-sweet chocolate chips. And because I love chocolate so much, I'll push the chocolate button and cover the top of the brownie batter with even more chocolate chips.

Get your finalized batter into a pre-greased 13"x9" baking dish and then into a pre-heated 350 °F oven. Bake the brownies for 25 min or until they pass the toothpick/tester "test". If you prefer to go with the 9"x9" pans as the other recipes suggest, you're looking for a cooking time closer to half an hour. Once cooled (read: RESIST!), cut out your (now) brownies and, if you're in the mood for even more sugar (which helps cut down on any traces of bitter from the dark cocoa powder), dust them with powdered sugar. Incredibly fudgy (to the point where one could quite possibly be enough...possibly), these brownies are especially moist and melt-in-your-mouth yet are held together with bites from the chocolate chips. 

For more brownie photos, click here.

N.B. Pretty much all the recipes for chocolate pudding brownies on-line really are identical, at least ingredients-wise; adding the dark cocoa was my clearest alteration. Also, take note that for the standard 9"x9" recipes, the typical yield is 24; I got 40 brownies from my 13"x9" pan.

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