There are brownies which we all grab in a pinch (done-in-a-hurry, maybe shop-bought, from a packet-mix, for a school bake sale) and then there are BROWNIES. Indulgent, squidgy and made at home with the best ingredients and always eaten warm. Possibly never even shared. This is just such a brownie. Now, I have to admit I cheated a little. I got sent a small but perfectly formed luxury chocolate brownie kit, designed by none other than Michel Roux Junior, but the lovely people at Gousto. They are the people who can send you the makings of a complete meal, every ingredient, measured out with an easy-to-follow recipe card. You can check out the Cauliflower Curry I made here and you can get £25 off your first box using RELISH at the checkout. The brownie kit is just one of the stocking fillers you can add to your order.
On with the recipe. I had two very willing helpers – more keen on the ‘lick the bowl part’ it has to be said. They were firmly in charge, reading and following the instructions all by themselves. We loved add the icing sugar snowflake for a festive feel. Our kit came with a template to cut out but you download a similar templates here.
When we don’t have a handy brownie kit, this is my go-to brownie recipe. Layering all of the dry ingredients in a pretty jar can also make a great gift.
185g unsalted butter
185g excellent dark chocolate
85g plain flour
40g cocoa powder
50g dried cranberries
100g dark chocolate chips
3 large eggs
225g golden caster sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
a little icing sugar for sifting over
Preheat your oven to 200C and grease and line a 20cm brownie tin.
Place a bowl over a saucepan of hot water and add the butter and broken-up chocolate. Melt slowly and stir occasionally to combine. You can also melt using a microwave. Leave to cool slightly.
Whisk the eggs with the caster sugar and vanilla extract until light and fluffy. This usually takes about 5 mins until the mixture has roughly doubled in size and the beaters leave a trail in the mixture that lasts a couple of seconds.
Gently fold the egg and sugar mixture into the cooled chocolate. Sift in the flour and cocoa powder and combine gently.
Finally gently stir in the chocolate chips and cranberries. Pour the mixture gently into the greased and lined tin, use a spatula to move the mixture to the corners and bake for 25 minutes.
After 25 mins, give the tin a shake. If it wobbles a little in the middle, it will need a bit longer. You are looking for that shiny crust with slight cracks.
When cooked, remove the brownie from the tin, and sift icing sugar over your snowflake template.