Take it from Oprah, “A little bit cakey, a little bit fudgey, a lot velvety—there’s nothing like a deep, dark, classic chocolate brownie.”
I’ve been wanting to try the famous brownie recipe from Baked: New Frontiers in Baking for quite some time now. To say that the recipe did not disappoint is a severe understatement. These are by far the best brownies I have ever made. Ever! Fudgey and decadent, any true chocoholic is sure to fall deeply in love with these babies.
And although their fudgey perfection on its own is enough to make me not think twice about having to chop and melt chocolate, it never hurts to add a little decorating fun to the process!
How To Make Baked Brownies
Get ready by setting 5 large eggs out on the counter to reach room temperature, preheating your oven to 350, and greasing a 9 x 13 baking pan.
Whisk together 1-1/4 cups of all-purpose flour, 1 teaspoon of salt, and 2 tablespoons of cocoa powder. The authors of Baked recommend that you use a dark unsweetened cocoa powder. In fact, they specifically suggest the brand Valrhona. If, like me, you’re not able to find it, trust me, your brownies will still be phenomenal.
In preparation for the next step, chop up 11 ounces of dark chocolate. Unlike the cocoa powder, I was able to find the recommended dark chocolate, Scharffen Berger’s Home Baking Bar 70%, at the grocery store. Rocking a sharp knife back and forth on the surface of the chocolate broke it up into coarse pieces without too much trouble.
Fill a saucepan half way full of water and bring it to a simmer. On top of the saucepan, not touching the water, set a bowl containing your chopped chocolate, 1 cup of unsalted butter that has been cut into 1-inch pieces, and 1 teaspoon of instant espresso powder (not ground espresso). Stir the mixture occasionally until it is melted.
While continuing to keep your bowl on top of the saucepan, turn off the burner. Add 1-1/2 cups of granulated sugar and 1/2 cup of light brown sugar to the mixture and stir to combine. Once you have a nice smooth chocolaty liquid that is making your mouth water, take your bowl off of the saucepan. Double check that the mixture is at room temperature before continuing.
Whisk 3 of your room temperature eggs into your chocolate and then whisk in the last 2 eggs. Stir in 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract, being careful not to overmix.
Fold your flour mixture into your chocolate mixture. Make sure you use a spatula and avoid overmixing by folding just until the flour has almost completely disappeared.
Finally, pour your mixture into your pan and set it in the oven to bake for 30 minutes, turning the pan half way through. Check your brownies using the toothpick test before the full 30 minutes has passed. The last thing you want to do is ruin these babies by over baking them!
Let your brownies cool completely before cutting them. Serve them as-is or do a little simple decorating to liven them up a bit!
How To Decorate Baked Brownies
To decorate your brownies, you will need:
- Powdered sugar
- A sifter
- Wilton Color Mist in any color (I used pink)
- Ribbon or a stencil of your choice
To add colorful stripes to your brownies, start by cutting strips of ribbon and setting them on a brownie in the areas you want to block out. Then, use a sifter to sprinkle powdered sugar over the entire surface of the brownie. Continue sprinkling the sugar until the surface is completely covered. Gently remove the ribbon from the brownies surface. Removing the ribbons before spraying your brownies with color makes it easier to cover all of the white sugar.
Follow the directions on your Color Mist can to spray color onto the powdered sugar. Since the brownie surface is dark, the color will only show on the sugar. Spray a light mist onto the sugar, give it a moment to somewhat dry and then add another layer of color if desired. Continue layering the colored spray until you reach your desired color.
If you prefer to decorate your brownies with a pattern other than stripes, simply replace the ribbon with a stencil of your choice.
These brownies will, without a doubt, be my go-to treat when I’m looking for something to satisfy a chocolate craving. I can’t wait to try another recipe from Baked: New Frontiers in Baking!
- 5 large eggs
- 1-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp. salt
- 2 tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder
- 11 oz. dark chocolate
- 1 cup unsalted butter, cut into 1-inch pieces
- 1 tsp. instant espresso powder
- 1-1/2 cups granulated sugar
- ½ cup light brown sugar
- 2 tsp. vanilla extract
- For decorating:
- ½ to 1 cup powdered sugar
- Wilton’s Color Mist in any color
- Set eggs out on the counter to reach room temperature.
- Preheat oven to 350 and grease a 9 x 13 baking pan.
- Whisk together flour, salt, and cocoa powder.
- Chop dark chocolate into coarse pieces.
- Fill a saucepan half way full of water and bring it to a simmer. On top of the saucepan, not touching the water, set a bowl containing your chopped chocolate, butter, and espresso powder. Stir the mixture occasionally until it is melted.
- While continuing to keep your bowl on top of the saucepan, turn off the burner. Add sugars to the mixture and stir to combine.
- Take bowl off of the saucepan. Double check that the mixture is at room temperature before continuing.
- Whisk 3 eggs into your chocolate and then whisk in the last 2 eggs.
- Stir in vanilla extract, being careful not to overmix.
- Fold flour mixture into your chocolate mixture. Avoid overmixing by folding just until the flour has almost completely disappeared.
- Pour your into pan and set it in the oven to bake for 30 minutes, turning the pan half way through.
- Let brownies cool completely before cutting them.
- To decorate brownies, place a stencil or ribbon in areas you don’t want colored.
- Cover the entire surface with powdered sugar using a sifter.
- Spray layers of color onto the sugar using Wilton’s Color Mist.
For more brownie decorating inspiration, check out Brownies for Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month.
Ready for more chocolaty temptation?
How about some Decorated Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Rice Krispie Treats!
Or maybe Chocolate Cookies with Raspberry Royal Icing are more your style!