Last week, I had a great day with Hallie and Sarah from Home + Garden Secrets; a home and garden referral service for local Los Angeles homeowners. I wrote an article about their business, their passions and their homes and after chatting and cooking for over two hours, we sat down to a delicious lunch. Everything we made was inspired by their organic garden.
One of the elements was a Tartine with a ricotta/cream spread, topped with breakfast radishes, chives, and sea salt. I cannot stop thinking about it and if I had some radishes in my house at this moment, that would be what I would be eating as I write this.
Although they do not grow cocoa beans, our meal had to end with dessert, a chocolate dessert. At least once (or twice) a week, I make a batch of my new favorite brownie recipe. Browned butter is the key element in making these brownies and now that I have made them this way, I am going to have a hard time going back. I have made these with chocolate covered cocoa nibs, adding a little espresso to the mix, and nixed the nuts. I have also added chopped bittersweet chunks and pecans. It simply doesn’t matter what you add to these, they are the perfect bite of goodness!
Cocoa Brownies with Browned Butter and Nuts
10 Tbsp.(5 oz.) unsalted, organic butter
250 grams | 8 3/4 oz. | 1 1/4 cups organic, white sugar
76 grams | 2 5/8 oz. | 3/4 cup natural, unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp. vanilla
1/4 tsp. sea salt
2 large, organic eggs, chilled
56 grams | 2 oz. | 1/3 cups plus 1 Tbsp. whole wheat pastry flour
100 grams | 3 1/2 oz. | 1 cup pecans (or walnuts), chopped (or other favorite mix-ins)
• preheat oven to 325*
• butter an 8″x 8″ metal baking pan, line with parchment and then butter the parchment.
• melt butter in a saute pan(not a non-stick), over medium heat. when brown bits form at the bottom of the pan, remove from heat(don’t walk away from it – it burns quickly – trust me).
• add the sugar, cocoa, 2 teaspoons of water, vanilla, and 1/4 teaspoon of sea salt, stir to blend. let cool for 5 minutes.
• add eggs to chocolate mixture, completely mixing after each egg.
• add flour and mix for 1 minute. add nuts.
• pour batter into prepared pan.
• bake 25- 28 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the center comes out with a few crumbs attached.
• cool completely in the pan.
• before cutting, I like to put in the fridge for 20 minutes. remove from fridge, lift brownies out of pan using the parchment overhang and cut into desired squares.
• hide a few of these because they do not last long!
The Urban Baker / SusanSalzman.com