Category: and preferably, baked goods

BROWNIES

(and preferably, baked goods) Per request, I am posting “The Farm” brownie recipe today. But I’m also posting another brownie recipe to follow. You’ll see that they follow pretty much the same procedure, which to me is key to making excellent brownies. The differences are in the amounts of some ingredients (butter goes from 3 to 2 sticks, eggs from 6 to 5) and the chocolate varieties. Basically, this one is more expensive and over the top rich. The next one is better for every day but still pretty awesome.* Sadly, I have no photos to share since they always just get eaten up fast. But you know what brownies look like. CHOCOLATE BROWNIES #1 I got this recipe from Gourmet years ago, who published it when someone asked for The Farm of Beverly Hills‘ recipe for brownies. I make them only for special occasions because they are really, really rich. The comment I get most often is, “I thought I had the best brownie recipe, but…” Good ingredients are important, and make sure you let them sit at least 2 hours before cutting or you’ll just have a big mess.  Otherwise, it’s an easy as pie recipe (way easier, actually). 3 sticks unsalted butter, cut into pieces 12 oz fine-quality bittersweet chocolate, chopped 6 large eggs 1 1/4 cups cake or pastry flour (I use All Purpose, honestly) 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder (not Dutch process) 3 cups sugar 1/2 teaspoon salt Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter and flour a 13- by 9- by 2-inch metal baking pan, knocking out excess flour. Melt butter with chocolate in a large metal bowl set over a saucepan of barely simmering water, stirring until smooth. Remove bowl from pan and whisk in eggs, 1 at a time. Sift together flour and cocoa powder in a separate bowl and stir into batter with sugar and salt. Pour batter into pan and bake in middle of oven until top is firm and a tester inserted into center comes out with crumbs adhering, 40 to 45 minutes. Cool completely in the pan on a rack, about 2 hours, before cutting into squares. *FULL CONFESSION: my kids prefer these brownies. Where, oh where did I go wrong?

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CHOCOLATE SOUR CREAM BUNDT CAKE

(and preferably, baked goods) from America’s Test Kitchen via Genius Kitchen For the first post in my new series “and preferably, baked goods” I had to share the recipe for this simple but rich and delicious cake, which my daughter baked for me for my birthday and I baked two weeks later for my book club getaway/friend’s birthday dinner. I don’t like frosting, so I like that this recipe doesn’t include a glaze, just a dusting of frosting (note the hint on a dusting tool at the end of the recipe). I’m not a food blogger so don’t expect step by step photos or videos here. Just the recipe and this one photo: INGREDIENTS For the pan: 1 tablespoon butter, melted 1 tablespoon cocoa powder For the cake batter: 3/4 natural cocoa powder (not Dutch processed) 6 ounces bittersweet chocolate pieces 1 teaspoon finely ground dark roast coffee 3/4 cup boiling water 1 cup sour cream, room temperature 1 3/4 cups all purpose flour 1 teaspoon salt 1 teaspoon baking soda 12 tablespoons butter, room temperature 2 cups light brown sugar (NOTE – I don’t pack it and often go light on sugar) 1 tablespoon vanilla extract 5 large eggs, room temperature confectioner’s sugar for dusting DIRECTIONS Combine cocoa, chocolate pieces, and coffee in a medium heatproof bowl. Whisk in boiling water until smooth. Let cool fully. Stir together the tablespoon of melted butter with a tablespoon of cocoa in a small bowl to form a paste. Use a pastry brush (this silicone one from Sur La Table is my favorite) to coat the inside, getting every nook and cranny, of a 12-cup Bundt pan. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Whisk flour, salt and baking soda in a medium bowl. In a standing mixer fitted with a paddle beater, cream together butter and sugar until pale and fluffy. Beat in vanilla. Add eggs one at a time, mixing about 30 seconds each time and scraping down sides of bowl as needed. Whisk sour cream into cooled chocolate mixture. Alternating, mix in half of flour mixture on a slow speed, then half of sour cream chocolate mixture, then repeat. Do not overmix. Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake until a wooden skewer comes out with dry crumbs attached, 45 – 50 minutes, but do not overbake! Cool for ten minutes and then invert onto a serving plate. When completely cool, dust with powdered sugar. Suggestion: serve with a dollop of whipped cream! NOTES

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