Cacao Nirvana Brownies
12 oz Bitter Sweet Chocolate – 60 – 65% is good… 71% is better … 85% is best (Lindt)
3 cubes (1 ½ cups) Butter (Unsalted) (If you use Salted butter omit the pinch of salt to the chocolate)
6 Large Eggs -or- 5 Extra Large Eggs
1 1/2 cups Granulated sugar
1/4 cup Light Brown sugar
1 tsp Vanilla extract -or- 1/2 Vanilla bean scraped
1 TB Strong brewed Coffee or 1 tsp Espresso Powder
A Pinch of Salt
1 5/8 cups All-Purpose Flour
1/2 cup Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips (Ghiradelli or Schokinag baking pieces)
1/2 cup White “Chocolate” Chips (Ghiradelli or Schokinag baking pieces)
1/4 tsp Cayenne Pepper (Optional)
Oven – 350°
Pan – 13 x 9 (3 quart) lined with parchment (I don’t recommend aluminum foil, as it reacts with acids and Chocolate is slightly acidic).
In a large sauce of sauté pan, melt Butter over low heat then add broken the Chocolate, stir gently until almost melted, then remove from heat (the chocolate will finish melting).
Add a pinch of Salt and the Cayenne.
Let this cool while you whisk the Eggs and Sugars together with the Coffee and Vanilla, just until the yolks & whites are combined.
Once the chocolate is cooled, begin pouring in the eggs, in a steady stream, into the chocolate, stirring constantly.
This will keep the eggs from curdling; Chocolate scrambled eggs, while tastey, are not all that satisfying.
Your chocolate mixture should thicken slightly once the eggs are incorporated.
Begin folding in the Flour, just until combined, lumps are OK. (If you mix it too much, your brownies will be more like cake when they are finished baking.)
Once the flour is folded in, add the Semi-Sweet and the White Chocolate Chips and incorporate with a few quick strokes.
Pour into your prepared pan and, with a spatula, level out your batter making sure to get it into the corners.
Then bake in the oven for 25 – 35 minutes. (Brownies are not supposed to be cooked to complete doneness or they will be dry. You will know they are done when the top becomes shiny and mottled.)
Let cool about 1/2 hour before lifting from pan by the parchment paper and moving to a cooling rack, peeling parchment off to keep the bottom from drawing moisture and becoming soggy.
Let cool another 15 minutes before cutting.
Sprinkle with a little powdered sugar, Dutch processed cocoa or a mixture of both.
Kick back and enjoy with either a delicious mug of Guatamalen Antigua coffee or a tall frosty glass of milk.
Pairs Well With
This recipe is an adaptation of one presented by Nigella Lawson on Nigella Feasts. If you want REALLY fudgie brownies, like I do, please use an 85% cacao solids bar as well as the addition of the cayenne and coffee. The coffee adds a roundness of flavor and the cayenne give just a touch of warmth without being noticeably hot. One thing I can guarantee is these brownies are NOT low fat in any way, shape, or form. However, they truly are delicious.