It’s my birthday week! (Yes, I make a whole week of it).
Actually It’s my birthday tomorrow – woohoo! I’m celebrating it Saturday night as well, and had a lovely birthday lunch yesterday with my soon to be mother-in-law and sister-in-law, along with my adorable little niece.
Every year I try and bake something special just for my birthday and share it with family or friends. I have a few recipes I’m wanting to make for this weekend so I’ll share them next week. I made these brownies at 10:00 at night on Monday because it’s far too hot out right now to have the oven on during the day. Also, brownies are better (read: a must) if they sit overnight, usually in the fridge. This allows them to become dense and fudge-like without being too cake-y. Baking them the night before means you have no option but to wait, and you can go to bed dreaming of brownies without being tempted to eat them ;)
If I had a choice between a layered cake, a cookie or a brownie I would almost definitely choose a brownie. It has to be a certain type however, one that is dense, crisp on top with a layer of crackle crust, and a dense fudge centre that you can really sink your teeth into. I like cookies and cake too, but I would always go for a rich chocolate brownie over the other two.
Brownies are in the same category as cookies because they’re a ‘finger food’ dessert, meant to be eaten with your hands instead of a fork like cake. The ‘food legend’ goes to say a housewife forgot to add baking soda to her cake mix and the batter didn’t rise, therefore creating a thinner dense dessert. She cut it up into small pieces and served it as a bar.
I’ve made quite the collection of brownie recipes on my site to prove my love for the dense dark square including:
Vegan Brownies (amazingly dense, you’d never guess they were vegan)
Flourless Almond Meal Brownies (no flour! same texture if not better than regular and perfect for gluten/wheat sensitive friends)
Deep Dish Chocolate Chip Brownies a.k.a brookies (the best of both worlds, brownies topped with chocolate chip cookie dough)
Fudgey Banana Brownies (a delicious blend of fruit and chocolate to create a thick brownie)
Banana Brownies with Chocolate Avocado Ganache (the banana brownie taken to the next level with avocado ganache, believe me it tastes good!)
Chocolate & Blonde Swirled Brownies (blonde brownies with a touch of chocolate)
Pumpkin Swirl Brownies (perfect for fall, pumpkin and chocolate are a great duo)
A dense delicious brownie studded with raspberries.
- 1 1/4 cups whole spelt flour (can sub regular AP flour, Whole Wheat Flour or gluten-free)
- 1/2 cup cacao powder
- 1/4 tsp baking soda
- 1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter
- 3.5 oz dark chocolate, chopped (or 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips)
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup almond milk
- 2 eggs (flax or regular will work)
- 1/2 pint raspberries
- Preheat oven to 350˚F. Line a 9″ square pan with parchment paper; set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, cacao powder and baking soda.
- In a a microwave-proof bowl melt the shortening and chocolate, 1-2 minutes.
- Once melted, stir in the sugar and heat additional 30 seconds.
- Create a well in the center of the flour mixture and pour in the eggs (flax or regular) and chocolate mixture; stir with a whisk just until combined. Add in almond milk.
- Batter will be thick, switch to spatular and fold together.
- Pour the batter into the prepared baking pan and level with the back of spatula.
- Dot with raspberries (use as many as you want).
- Bake at 350˚F for 20-25 minutes.
- Allow to cool in pan entirely, transfer to fridge for an hour or two or overnight. The longer they sit the fudge-ier they will be.
- If your raspberries sink into the batter while baking, simply top with fresh raspberry halves as soon as the brownies come out of the oven.
- You could also fold in some raspberries into the batter before pouring it into the pan, and then top with more berries.
Adapted from Oh, Ladycakes
Adapted from Oh, Ladycakes
b a k e a h o l i c http://www.bakeaholic.ca/
Happy Friday everyone!
As a teacher, this marks the first day of Spring Break.
School today was a little hectic – especially when one parent brought in a 10-pack timbits for every kid in class. All 23 of them.
Sugar high + last of school before a two-week break? Crazy.
Luckily it’s sunny out, I’ve already gone to the gym and can begin my two weeks off.
I wanted to share this Flourless Brownie Recipe I created for Vancity Buzz this week. It’s the perfect brownie made with no flour, or flour substitutes. Just almond meal. It’s dense and fudgey with the must-have top crust.
Be sure to check them out – and make them for a sweet (wheat-free) weekend.
My dad had a sweet tooth – I’m proud to say that I’m certain that’s where I inherited mine from. Father’s day is tough each year, even though it’s been 9 years this upcoming Wednesday since he passed away. It never gets easier – how can it? Instead of celebrating with him, I thought I’d make him something in honour of him, and his sweet tooth.
I can remember every night after dinner my dad would want something for dessert, usually we would have ice cream, maybe a fruit salad. When my mom and I would go grocery shopping he would be sure to remind her to “pick up something sweet.” It was the way he would say it, “something sweet” with a grin on his face. One of his favourite desserts was a deep dish brownie from Safeway, the square one in the tinfoil packaging and clear lid, with a sickeningly sweet thick chocolate ganache frosting smeared on top in such a way that it left a distinct pattern. I’m fairly certain it didn’t last more than one night in our house. I can’t remember the last time I had one of those.
I thought I would make one of his favourite desserts to celebrate father’s day this year. And while I no longer have my own father, I am very thankful to have two father figures in my life who are there for me always.
These are a much healthier version than the Safeway brownies, but I think my dad would have approved of them for his sweet tooth craving. The ganache is decadent and silky, and the brownie is almost like fudge – sweet tooth satisfying.
If you’re lucky enough to celebrate father’s day with your dad this year, be sure to share it with him – and maybe a slice of brownie or two.
happy father’s day dad, miss you like crazy
Fudgey Banana Brownies
*can easily be made vegan by swapping out the butter for vegan butter, and egg for egg replacement*
*Wheat Free* *Gluten Free*
recipe by Bakeaholic, original post here
- 6 tbs. Butter
- 3/4 Cup Chopped Extra Dark Chocolate (can use dark chocolate chips)
- 2 medium Ripe Bananas
- 1 Tsp. Vanilla extract
- ½ Cup Sugar
- 1 Tsp. Baking Powder
- 1 Egg
- 1/4 Cup Unsweetened Cocoa
- 1 cup Rice Flour/Brown Rice Flour/GF Flour
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line an 8×8 inch baking dish with parchment paper.
- Heat butter and chocolate in a small saucepan over medium low heat Stir until everything is melted. Set aside to cool.
- Whisk together the flour, cocoa and baking powder. Set aside.
- In stand mixer with whisk attachment, or medium bowl and blender, mash the bananas, vanilla extract, and sugar. Add the egg and blend again.
- Add in the melted butter-chocolate mixture and mix well.
- Stir in the flour mixture and blend just until combined.
- Pour batter into the prepared pan and bake for 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean. You want it to be slightly gooey when you check it, not completely dry. If it needs another couple minutes increase baking time.
** These brownies are best after they are refrigerated! ** Make them the night before **
Tip: I always refrigerate my brownies – it makes them extra dense and fudgey. I recommend letting them come to room temperature on the counter, and then cover and transfer pan to fridge for a couple hours, or even better, overnight.
For these, you want them to be completely cooled before adding the ganache frosting. I refrigerated these ones for an hour or so, then added the frosting then refrigerated for another couple hours, or overnight.
Chocolate Avocado Ganache
This is a seriously amazing ganache – much healthier than the regular version, and includes healthy fats
*Vegan- sub agave for honey*
- 2 medium rip avocados
- 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
- 1/4 – 1/2 cup melted extra dark chocolate
- 2-3 tsp. honey/agave nectar
Cut avocado in half, remove skin and pit from avocados and scoop out the flesh.
In a food processor, add avocados and puree until smooth. Alternatively, you can blend it in a blender.
Once smooth, add the cocoa, melted chocolate and honey and blend again until smooth. Mixture should be thick and glossy.
Scoop onto cooled brownies and spread evenly over top.
Cover and refrigerate for an hour, or longer until ganache hardens. ** NOTE: Definitely refrigerate the brownies once you add the ganache, the longer it sits the ganache gets sweeter as the flavours medley together**
When ready to serve, take out of the baking dish by lifting the parchment – cut into squares and serve. Refrigerate any leftovers in container.