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Sitting on the fence

>> Sunday, April 29, 2007

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I admit brownie isn’t my thing. I would rather go for dark chocolate than brownie if I need a rush of chocolate in my system. Actually the thought of making brownie never occurred to me until Myriam announced a lovely event called browniebabe of the month. I thought this would be a perfect chance to indulge in some extra chocolate so my first brownie was “born”.

Although I have never made brownie before, I know good brownie must start with the best possible ingredients. I love the local brand Koko Black so I continue to use their cocoa powder and 60% dark chocolate in baking. If you have a chance to visit Melbourne, do check out Koko Black’s hot chocolate. It is really lovely.

Now, time to choose a good recipe. It is a hard job since there are many brownie recipes available. I, however, decided to stick to the “on-the-fence brownie” recipe from Baker’s Companion. This recipe promises a brownie that is “fudgy” but still rises nicely as “cakey” brownie.

My brownie turns out well but it is not as fudgy as the illustrated photo. I guess I can’t really sit on the fence. I like cakey brownie and it automatically transfers to the end product since I baked it a bit longer than suggested. But I get what I want – a brownie that is packed with real chocolate. One thing I am really happy with is the nice top crust on the brownie. The trick is to heat and dissolve melted butter with sugar twice. Don't you love little tips like this in recipes? I do since it really helps to improve my baking experiences .

This brownie is packed with my favourite chocolate and I love it. Next time I may try to add some nuts to see how it goes.

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On-the-Fence Brownies

Recipe from the Baker’s Companion

Yield: 24 x 2-inch brownies


1 cup (8 oz) unsalted butter

2 cup sugar

1 ¼ cup cocoa powder*

1 tsp salt

1 tsp baking powder

1 tbp vanilla extract

4 large eggs

1 ½ cup plain flour*

1 cup chocolate pieces (I used 60% solid variety)


Preheat oven to 350F. Lightly grease a 9x13 inch pan.

Melt butter over medium heat, take out and stir in sugar. Return the mixture to the heat briefly just until it is hot.

Stir in cocoa, salt, baking powder and cocoa.

Whisk in eggs, stirring until smooth. Add flour & chocolate pieces and stir until smooth. Spoon into prepared pan.

Bake for 28-30 mins for a super-moist brownie and longer for a cakey brownie.

(*) I used Koko Black (an Australian brand) cocoa powder. You can use any Dutch-process cocoa.
(*) This recipe is from King Athur's
publication so they recommend King Athur unbleached all-purpose flour, which is unavailable in Australia. I used Australian White Whing's plain flour and it works fine.


Ellie 1:38 AM  

Yes yes yes! I don't care what brownie purists say, they are ALWAYS better with nuts :D

Gattina 2:06 AM  

Anh, I love both... chocolate and brownie :D Your brownies really like great. Me too, like to see little tip/insight from the author.
(pssst... I only like store-bought brownie, must be some evilful ingredients that make them good)

Susan 3:57 AM  

OK, Anh, I'd jump over fences to eat some of these brownies.:)

eliza 4:17 AM  

a solid recipe for a brownie...yours look very yummy indeed.

Sher 8:23 AM  

I love them with or without nuts--but they are even better with them. I would sure like a couple of those brownies with a large glass of cold milk. Heaven!

Philly Sports 9:42 AM  

I am glad to see you have to come to the dark side, the dark brownie side. They are so good and yours is right up there with the best.

Precious Moments 11:07 AM  

oh i have been craving for brownies! but just too lazy to bake them. Throw some over! yum yum....

Truffle 12:00 PM  

Those gorgeous photos are giving me a serious chocolate craving. They look lovely!

Sushma 3:46 PM  

The Brownie looks so delicious and perfect ...

I also like to see and learn little cooking tips and thats why I started a Monthly Cooking Tipology event on my site. Hope you would participate sometime soon :-)

P.S.My website would be up on May 1st.

Anh 3:48 PM  

Ellie, Ok next time I'll try it with nuts! :D

Gattina, I know you love both :D I am simpler, just gimme chocolate and I'll be happy.

Susan, oh... No need to jump. Just fly to Melbourne, I'll prepare some for you ;)

Eliza, thanks. yours are delicious, too.

Sher, thank you. I love to eat mine with coffee.

Philly, thank you.

Edith, can I exchange this for some apple bar? ;)

Truffle, thanks dear.

Sushma, I will check your site tomorrow for the details... Thanks for the lovely compliment.

Lydia 4:16 AM  

There is, I believe, no such thing as a bad brownie. Nuts are a popular addition, but I prefer my brownies plain. I think of it this way -- no nuts, more room for chocolate!

Patricia Scarpin 4:59 AM  

Anh, I'm not much of a brownie fan either, but yours look so good I'd have several pieces!

steamy kitchen,  5:54 PM  

What a great recipe. Question- why does melting the butter twice make the crust? hmmm?

Sandeepa 11:53 PM  

Mmmmmmmmmmmm sinful to say the least !!!

Sharmi 8:10 AM  

lovely recipe with awesome pics. looks so yummy. I usually bring brownie mix, but this one is so easy.

Anh 9:20 AM  

Lydia, love your principle! Yeap more chocolate is always better.

Pat, thanks dear.

Steamy kitchen, the recipe says because more sugar is dissolved. I will have to go back to study physics (something I am really bad at!) to answer it perfectly. :P

Sandepa, thanks. It is sinful I agree.

Sharmi, do give it a try if you can. It is really easy!

Angela,  3:07 PM  

Great easy recipe! You can try brushing honey or light pancake syrup on top if you like your brownies to be fudgy-sticky then place in the refrigerator to firm. For nuts, I use cashews but plain peanuts will also do nicely. A brownie glaze of ganache is always a welcome treat for chocolate lovers like you.

Amrita 10:46 PM  

hey anh. u r really getting better and better by the day!!!! ive relocated to Le Petite its time to change the link! hahaha.......keep up the good work.

Helene 1:40 PM  

For a first time making brownie you did an fantastic job. The whole neighborhood is going to end up jumping over your fence!

Cranberry 11:07 AM  

Anh, i m falling in love with your brownie, simply awesome! die die also must try out your recipe one day huh *lol*

Erika of Sweet Pea Blog,  1:10 AM  

Hi, this is my 1st visit to your blog :) I feel the same way about brownies, but these ones you have made look great - I may be a brownie convert yet!! If you like dark chocolate please drop by my blog and check out the 'Earl Grey Tea Chocolate Cake' it is a little bit of heaven
Look forward to reading your next posts

PASSIONATE BAKER....and beyond. 10:19 PM  

Hi...frirst time on your blog....and LOVING IT!! Your posts make great reading, and pictures are fab!! The brownie recipe is almost like the one I use, though I use 1/2 cup sugar less. agree with Ellie...always better with nuts!!
Do drop by my blog someday...I'm at

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