The Adventures of Kitchen Girl

October 1, 2008

Fudgy Frosted Brownies

Last month Robert Steinberg passed on after a long battle with lymphatic cancer. I post this entry in his honor and with many thanks for changing the way many of us see American made chocolate. -KG

We *love* brownies. I mean like make them once a week, we love them so much. I have baked many brownies in my time but this is our favorite of all the recipes we've tried. I started making it when I was given a cookbook for Christmas almost 2 years ago and I've not made another brownie since. It's *that* good. The book I'm talking about is "The Essence of Chocolate: Recipes for Baking and Cooking with Fine Chocolate" by John Scharffenberger and Robert Steinberg.

John Scharffenberger and Robert Steinberg started Scharffen Berger Chocolate Maker, an American chocolate company based out of Berkeley, California. So you can see why this cookbook would be an excellent place to find a great brownie recipe. Scharffen Berger has been my favorite American chocolate for a long time now and is the one I use most often for cooking and baking.

6 Tbsp. (3 ounces) unsalted butter, cut into cubes, plus more for the pan
8 oz. 70-percent bittersweet chocolate
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/4 tsp. salt
2 large eggs
1/3 cup all-purpose flour

1. Position a rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat the oven to 325 degrees.

2. Cut an 8-by-16-inch piece of parchment paper. Lightly butter an 8-by-8-by-2-inch pan and line it with the parchment, allowing it to extend evenly over the opposite sides. Butter the parchment, including the paper on the sides of the pan.

3. Place the chocolate and butter in a large heatproof bowl set over a pot of gently simmering water and stir occasionally until melted and smooth. Remove from the heat.

4. With a large rubber spatula or wooden spoon, beat the sugar and salt into the chocolate mixture. Beat in the eggs one at a time. Add the flour and mix vigorously until the batter is very glossy and pulls away from the sides of the bowl.

5.Pour the batter into the prepared pan and tap the pan bottom on the counter top to level the batter. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until a skewer inserted in the center comes out moist but clean.

6. Let cool in the pan on a cooling rack for 10 minutes. Remove the brownies from the pan using the parchment “handles,” and cool completely on the rack before cutting.

Frost when completely cooled if desired.

Chocolate chip frosting
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
2/3 cup cocoa powder
3 cups powdered sugar
1/3 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup mini semi-sweet chocolate chips

Melt butter. Stir in cocoa. Alternately add powdered sugar and milk, beating to spreading consistency. Add small amount additional milk, if needed. Stir in vanilla and chocolate chips. About 2 cups frosting.